At the Edge of the World

  • dezz

    dezz (100)

    :
    Ghoul of 2016
    Gender:
    Age:
    23
    Location:
    United States
    anfrih tigg
    member of the royal guard
    played by katahdin

    egon of cintra
    witcher
    played by dezzy


    Image


    verris ver crawwell
    princess
    played by dezzy

    geralt of rivia
    witcher
    played by katahdin
    January 17th, 2020 at 05:40am
  • dezz

    dezz (100)

    :
    Ghoul of 2016
    Gender:
    Age:
    23
    Location:
    United States
    Ver could hear her parents arguing out in the hall right outside of her bedroom door. It's time she knew! Her father's voice bellowed into the room and she could hear her mother's quiet sobs. He mumbled something about her age, she had just turned sixteen and that was the age a girl became a woman in their time. The arguing subsided and Ver looked up at the door when she heard it start to open. Her father led her mother into the room and over to where she sat, frozen on the bed. Her stomach felt like it was tied up in knots and she was terribly worried about what they were about to tell her. She feared it would be about being betrothed to another prince in a faraway kingdom she had never heard of or something similar.

    "Verris." Her father spoke in a soft tone, "There's something your mother and I have been keeping from you most of your life." The queen came over to sit next to the young princess, running her hand over her soft dark hair. The king, not caring to actually explain anything to the young princess, said in as few words as possible, "Before you were born you were promised to a Witcher. We fear he is on his way for you." The king's guards had swiftly brought him the information of Geralt's return to Redania the moment the Witcher stepped foot within the cities gates. Ver felt her heart hit her stomach. That was far worse than being betrothed to a prince. Instead, she had been promised to a monster slayer. Her hands began to tremble and she looked up at her mom, fear in her eyes.

    Her mother sighed softly, tears still feeling her graying eyes. "There's more to the story." Gentle fingers brushed through Verris's hair and her mother began to explain how the Witcher had saved her life barely a year before Verris was born. "As payment, your father offered the man the Law of Surprise. Strangely enough, I fell pregnant with you merely hours later. It was clear what destiny was trying to tell us. There's a reason for it."

    None of that helped explain to the young princess why she was now tied to this monster slayer. Her father had done a wonderful job of painting Witcher's as monsters themselves to the young girl, but now hearing that one helped save her own mother helped start an internal conflict. She didn't even have much time to process it before a guard came entering the room, the metal clinking of his armor alerting the three. "Sorry to interrupt, my king, but the Witcher is in the courtyard. He would like to see the princess."

    Her father grumbled under his breath, before forcing Verris to her feet. "You must, we don't want to upset destiny." The king's voice almost came out mockingly, like it was absurd to suggest that was even possible. He led the girl from her room all the way to the entrance of the palace. Guards opened the door for the king and his daughter and as large ornate doors parted, she could see a man leaning against their water fountain, his hair lying over his shoulder as pale as snow. He was dressed in black trousers and a jerkin, leather padding over his shoulders and two large swords strapped to his back. It would be a lie to say he didn't strike fear into the princess.
    Egon had followed Geralt to Redania on the promise of a great payday by the end of it. They were passing through the North and once they had gotten close enough to see signs on the dirt roads they followed pointing to Redania, Geralt had proposed they stopped in at the kingdom for a drink. Oddly enough, as soon as they passed the kingdom's gates, the Witcher from Rivia had disappeared as if he had vanished into thin air. Knowing he would be back, Egon continued on his journey for a stiff drink. Hopping down from his horse, he tied into the first stable post he came too. Patting the chestnut horse on the nose, he muttered for her to be patient.

    Passing through the market on his way to find any sort of bar, tavern, or even an inn, he stalled at nearly every vendor, perusing the wares they offered. It was also hard for him to not stop and admire the scenery of the towering castle that shadowed the rest of the kingdom. It stood tall with its many towers that almost touched the clouds. He would've never thought that was Geralt's destination. "Who needs so much room anyways?" He scoffed at the castle, turning back around to continue his walk through the city streets. His hand found its way running through his many curls, his fingers twisting around random strands of his hair. The younger Witcher could feel the many glares he was receiving, it was obvious what he was. If the two swords strapped to his back didn't give it away, the wolf's head necklace he wore around his neck certainly did.

    Witchers were rarely welcomed inside city gates.

    Hearing the galloping of horses behind him, he quickly turned around to see three city guards on horseback were racing through the market, causing handfuls of people to race to get out of the way. Stepping back without looking where he was going, he felt himself knock into someone and he cursed under his breath. Catching his balance, he spun around to see he had knocked down a guard, bearing the royal family's house crest on their chest. Great, been here five minutes and I'm already going to piss off the crown. He reached his hand out to the girl, chewing on the inside of his lip as he waited for her to accept it. "I'm sorry, those idiots on the horses didn't really care to watch where the were going." He laughed, trying to make light of the situation.
    January 17th, 2020 at 06:32am
  • katahdin

    katahdin (100)

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    @ dezzy

    Geralt had not wanted the girl. He's chosen the Law of Surprise as payment for saving the queen all those years ago because he expected some money or extra crops, not a child. And for the last sixteen years, he'd been avoiding her. He'd returned to Redania once shortly after the child he'd been promised had been born, wanting to check in on the newest prince. But to his surprise the child had been a girl, a princess, and that fact alone had made Geralt want to stay as far away from her as possible. The life of a Witcher was no life for a princess. But, with tensions high among many of the kingdoms on the continent, and with the girl coming of age, he figured he ought to check in on her and make sure that she was safe, and to offer his protection if she were in need of it.

    He hadn't told any of this to Egon, knowing that the other Witcher wouldn't have agreed to come with him had he known that it was to check in on a princess, instead promising that after he was finished with his business within the city, that they would take care of a few monsters that had been plaguing nearby villages for the past few weeks. That, and he'd told his companion that he would pay for their drinks in one of the city's taverns. Once within the city he'd slipped away from Egon to head to the palace, wanting to keep his meeting with the princess to himself, although once he'd arrived in the courtyard he'd been stopped by a few members of the royal guard. After demanding that he be allowed inside to see the princess, one of the guards had disappeared inside to go ask the king for permission or something, leaving Geralt to pace around the courtyard, counting the guards that were stationed there and looking for possible exits, in case this ended up being a trap.

    He was leaning against the fountain at the center of the courtyard, staring down one of the younger guards when he heard the front gates open, straightening as he turned to watch the king and princess walked out of the castle, the Witcher bowing his head respectfully once they'd stopped. "Your majesty. Princess." He spoke in greeting, wanting to keep things brief and simple. The girl looked well taken care of, although it was obvious that she was terrified of him, and that her father was furious at seeing him again. "I've come to make sure that the princess is safe, and well taken care of."
    Anfrih was one of three women to be accepted into the royal guard this year. One of the first three women to ever be accepted into the royal guard, in fact. She'd grown up as a friend of Princess Verris, and she was sure that it was her who had convinced her father the king to allow her and a few other women to go through the training, and then allowed her to take the oath to serve the royal family of Redania. She'd been assigned as the personal guard of Princess Verris, but her friend had given her the day off, telling her to go enjoy the market, also asking her to collect a few things from various vendors for her that her father would normally not allow the princess to buy herself. She'd have much rather been at the Princess's side, doing her job rather than running errands for her, especially as most people within the city, as well as most of the other guards thought it improper for a woman to be a member of the royal guard, even if she had been the best out of all the trainees sworn in this year.

    She'd been haggling with a vendor, the older man trying to swindle her and get her to pay three times what the little bobble she wanted was worth, when she heard a small commotion as three guards galloped past on their way back to the castle. Before she had time to consider why they were in such a rush to get there someone knocked into her in order to avoid getting run over, causing her to stumble back, knocking into the vendor's table, which sent a lot of the goods tumbling into the mud, which only made the vendor more furious with the young guard.

    Looking up she met the gaze of the man who had knocked into her, staring at him for a moment before her eyes drifted to the wolfs head necklace he wore around his neck. A Witcher. In Redania. That was definitely odd, most Witchers kept as far away from cities as possible, only coming into the city gates when absolutely necessary. She reached up and took his outstretched hand, grateful for the help standing up, before she turned to face the vendor that she'd been dealing with, who was shouting at her for ruining his wares.

    "Oh, shut it." She snapped, glaring at the man. "You don't have a permit to be selling here anyway, and I know that you get most of things you sell illegally. So you have two options. Either keep yelling and I'll arrest you, and perhaps on the way to the dungeon my hand will slip and you'll end up dead in an alley somewhere, or you can give me what I've requested for a reasonable price, and then pack up and get out of this city." She wouldn't actually kill the man, but the threat worked, and the vendor promptly handed her over everything she'd wanted before taking off with his things.

    With a sigh she turned back to the Witcher, studying him curiously. When she was a little girl she'd wanted to be a Witcher, but girls weren't allowed. Girls hadn't been allowed to be royal guards, but here she was, wearing the armor and everything, so she'd proved her mother wrong. "What's a Witcher doing in Redania?" She asked curiously, tilting her head a bit as she looked up at him.
    January 17th, 2020 at 07:36pm
  • dezz

    dezz (100)

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    Ghoul of 2016
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    United States
    It was sad to say that the young princess didn't feel any comfort being escorted by her father to the stranger. Feeling more like a prisoner in her own home than she did a daughter, she almost was excited to meet a new person. She was never allowed outside of the castle walls, had never met any of her subjects. Unbeknownst to her, it was because her father wanted no one to know they had a daughter. They didn't want to give Ver even a slight chance at the throne, especially since her older brother was only older by a year. That was another reason why her father was furious at the Witcher. Geralt had never come and actually taken Verris away.

    Verris's eyes landed on the stranger the moment they walked through the entrance to their home. Out of nerves, she began to fiddle with the long gray sleeves of her dress. The witcher was resting against the fountain in the center of the courtyard and didn't stand up straight until he saw the royal pair exit the castle. I've come to make sure that the princess is safe, and well taken care of." Verris could feel her face get hot because of anger and she instantly wanted to ask why. She wanted to ask him why just because the Law of Surprise had been called did he care if she was safe now? Instead, she held her tongue, fearful of what her father might do in the face of her outburst. Truthfully, she was just angry at the whole situation that she had been placed in.

    "See for yourself." The king spoke with an annoyed tone in his voice, grabbing his daughter by the arm and forcing her closer to him. It was only then that the young princess looked directly into the man's face, her eyes widening in terror at how the shade of his was the same as glowing embers, a burning bright orange; completely unnatural. His pale white hair fell over his shoulders and his arms were crossed tightly over his chest and two large swords were strapped to his back. Even though the stranger was handsome she couldn't help feel pissed off by meeting him now. To her, it seemed like her father didn't want her because he had offered up as payment and it also seemed like the stranger didn't really care at all. He was probably just here looking for a hand out, after all, all a Witcher cares about is coin.

    "Safe and well," was all the princess spoke as her eyes flickered away from his.
    Egon's face quickly had turned a bright shade of red, completely embarrassed at the whole scene he had just caused. Now all the people passing by were looking in his direction, all immediately noticing what he was. Some people glared and others hurried by him as quickly as they possibly could, he didn't blame them. Egon knew what all of these people thought of him, that he was no better than the monsters he kills. That all he cares about is taking an honest man's coin.

    After helping the guard up on her feet, he was a bit shocked at the way the vendor immediately began yelling at her. It didn't take long for the fair-headed beauty to instill a bit of fear in him, though. When she turned around and he made eye contact with her for the first time, he couldn't help but feel his breath catch in his throat a bit. She truly was a beauty. "Oh just passing through. A friend had some business here, just waiting on him." He didn't see the point in lying, after all, he didn't even really know why he was here. "You buying that little toy for someone?" He pointed down at the trinket in her hands. Egon wasn't like Geralt in the way that he didn't care to be a tad bit more social, in certain situations. Especially when those situations involved a pretty girl.

    Before he could get an answer from the girl, or even ask her name, someone came stomping up behind him only to jab him in the back sharply, before yelling, "Witchers aren't welcome inside Redania's walls." Apparently Egon had garnered more than just bystander attention, certain people here really didn't care to make their opinions known. He stumbled forward and almost fell on his knees but quickly picked up his balance and tried to turn around in time to see who had hit him. Unfortunately, the person had disappeared within the crowd, but Egon decided to just let it go, he didn't want to cause more of a scene. The Witcher, whose eyes had turned a glowing shade of bright orange out of anger, turned around to face the guard again. He shut his eyes quickly and ran his hand through his hair trying to calm down. "Cowards," He sighed before opening his eyes again to look up at the guard.

    @ katahdin
    January 18th, 2020 at 05:06am
  • katahdin

    katahdin (100)

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    @ dezzy

    Geralt glared at the king as he shoved his daughter forward, not pleased about the force he was using with the young girl. He'd known from his visit when Verris was a baby that the king was not happy that the princess had not been born a prince, but he'd assumed that her father would get over his disappointment in time. He'd clearly been mistaken, judging by the way the king spoke and manhandled his daughter. She also didn't look particularly happy, and while it was obvious that she was upset at being dragged out to see him, she also seemed a little too thin to really be a happy child.

    He held his hand out to steady Verris when she was shoved forward by her father, gaze softening as he turned his attention to her. He knew that she'd be scared of him. He was a Witcher, after all, and if he could avoid scaring her further, he'd do his best not to. He could also tell that she was angry with him, and he couldn't blame her. He'd be pissed if the person who should have taken her years ago showed up out of the blue asking if he was alright, even though he'd been left with parents that hated him.

    "Hm." He hummed as his orange gaze moved over her, making sure there were no obvious signs of injury before looking back at the king. "I've heard rumors of unrest in the kingdoms to the south. Many think war may break out. I've come to make sure that the princess is safe here, or offer to protect her, if she is not." He explained as he looked at the king, expecting him to react poorly to his offer. He didn't particularly want to have to take care of the girl, but if he thought it was the best thing for her, he would.
    Anfrih was surprised to see the Witcher blush, having assumed that the mighty warriors wouldn't feel emotions like embarrassment or guilt. She made sure the vendor was gone for good, and that the vendors nearby were minding their own business before taking what she needed from what was left in his stall, shoving the bobbles into the bag she was filling with the princess's requested trinkets. She looked up at Egon when he spoke. "I thought Witchers traveled on their own... Most people don't care for them." She pointed out, wondering who his friend could possibly be. Certainly no one from Redania.

    She looked down at the trinket in her hand when he pointed it out, wiping some of the mud off before putting it in her little satchel along with the rest. She was about to answer him when someone came from behind and shoved him, instinctively moving to support him as he stumbled forward, one hand on his shoulder and the other on his arm. She glared in the direction of where the man had probably disappeared to. It didn't help her mood when she heard someone in the crowd speak out against her either. "Figures the whore would side with a Witcher. Bitch had to fuck her way into the royal guard, and now she's opening her legs to monsters." She clenched her fist in an attempt to control her anger, stepping back away from him with a sigh as she looked up at him.

    "I'm sorry for them. They're... assholes." She offered the man a faint smile, hoping to lighten his mood a little bit. He was handsome, and she felt it a shame for him to get upset over what a bunch of dumb peasants who'd never left the city walls were saying about him.
    January 18th, 2020 at 07:18am
  • dezz

    dezz (100)

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    Ghoul of 2016
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    The king laughed at the Witcher's offer. "We've done an okay job protecting her so far, it seems. If war breaks lose and heads this far North, our armies will not only protect the princess, but the entire kingdom. You're not needed, Witcher."

    Verris felt strange with the man's hand on her shoulder. His touch that was meant to steady her had felt soft and cautious as if he had been worried of how she'd react, or worried of hurting her. She had been expecting to hate the feeling of his touch but it was calming instead. Verris looked over her shoulder to see her mother entering the courtyard.

    "Whether we believe our kingdom to be safe for the princess or not, Geralt is here and I believe that's an act of destiny." The queen seemed to be the only to use his name and actually be somewhat thankful to him. He had saved her life after all. "Whether he wants to actually accept payment or not, perhaps he should at least spend some time with Verris?" Her suggestion seemed unfavored by everyone she spoke too, but being the only person here to truly believe in destiny, she insisted.

    Her father sighed and looked back to the Witcher. "The queen has spoken, Witcher. Or are you going to object to her?"

    Verris turned her attention back to the Witcher, seeing what appeared to be annoyance written all over his face. If it was such a bother, why had he returned here in the first place? She clasped her hands behind her back, feeling a gentle breeze pick up and run through her hair. It ran through the Witcher's hair as well, sending a faint scent of pine and amber her way.
    Trying to calm his anger had failed when he heard the civilians around them calling her a whore and other profanities. His hand instantly went to the hilt of one of his swords, but he refrained from unsheathing it when he finally felt the guards hands on his shoulders. She had helped steady him and he was only now realizing it. He was easily blinded by rage. Taking a deep breath and relaxing his shoulders, he removed his hand from his sword and suggested they move along. "Perhaps we could find somewhere else to speak?"

    He realized that was probably why Witchers were frowned upon in most cities and kingdoms. They had their own morals and ethics and we're quick to pull their swords on anyone when they felt threatened. If it wasn't for the promise of coin from Geralt, and maybe a little for this guard in front of him, he would've cut down her insulters.

    But if he got thrown out of the kingdom before reuniting with Geralt, that would mean no coin for him. He led the guard away from the rows of vendors, stepping away further from the multicolored tents of the marketplace. "So you're doing a bit of shopping for the princess? I've ran right into a very special guard then, haven't I?"

    @ katahdin
    January 18th, 2020 at 07:57am
  • katahdin

    katahdin (100)

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    Geralt didn't particularly like the King's attitude toward him, and had he been any other man he likely would have given him a good punch to the gut. But he was a king, and he had no interest in fighting any of these guards, or getting locked in a dungeon. He moved his hand from the princess's shoulder, fixing the man with a hard look before his attention turned to the Queen as she arrived. He bowed his head respectfully, finding the Queen much more reasonable than her husband. Although, as she spoke of destiny and spending time with the princess he fought the urge to roll his eyes. Destiny was something people talked about to comfort themselves, it wasn't anything special.

    But he liked the Queen, and didn't want to upset her, so after a moment of consideration he nodded, casting a hard glare at the King when he spoke before turning back to the Queen. "I wouldn't dare go against what the Queen requests of me." He said with a little nod of his head, a sign of respect.

    He didn't really know what he'd do to spend time with Verris, but he knew he didn't want to spend that time in the castle. That felt like a trap, in his eyes, even if the Queen had no ill will toward him, her husband certainly did.

    "Perhaps I could accompany the princess into the city for a few hours." Geralt offered, hoping that the king would find the request reasonable.
    Anfrih instinctively tensed when she saw his hand move to the hilt of his sword, ready to move and draw her own if needed. As much as she also wanted to cut down those who were insulting them, as a member of the Royal Guard it was her job to uphold the law, and if the Witcher decided to draw his sword, she'd have to fight him.

    She relaxed as he did, however, stepping back and nodding in agreement when he suggested they leave the market, adjusting her braid as she followed him through the streets. It must be an odd sight, a Witcher and a royal guard walking together, and the unlikely pair definitely warranted the looks everyone gave them. But now that they were away from the market, there were less people, which meant less dirty looks and people spitting at them as they passed.

    She couldn't help the laugh that escaped her as he refered to her as a very special guard, rolling her eyes as she shook her head. "Oh yes, very special indeed." She teased. "One of the first three women to be allowed into the guard, assigned personal guard to the princess, and I'm running her errands for her." She looked up at Egon, a bit of a smile on her lips. "What about you, Witcher? What are you and your friend doing in Redania?"
    January 18th, 2020 at 04:45pm
  • dezz

    dezz (100)

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    The king stiffened at the Witcher's suggestion, his whole body tensing. They had never let her leave the castle grounds and the kingdom had no clue of the little princess. Verris had a different reaction, however. She perked up at the thought of actually getting to see the kingdom, explore the market, see all the people... "I don't think-" the king began to speak, but was quickly interrupted by the queen.

    "Come, Verris, we will need to change your clothes first." Her mother held her hand out for the young girl. Before taking it, she looked back at the Witcher for a moment. It was still written all over his face that he wasn't too happy about the predicament he found himself in, but perhaps it would be fruitful for her. Finally a chance to be out from under her father's thumb for just a little while.

    The princess and the queen disappeared back into the castle and the king turned to the Witcher, his face reddening with anger. "Why did you come back? She's not going to forget you when you disappear this time." The Witcher had only seen the princess once before, when she was first born. "The civilians in my kingdom believe the princess is to sickly to leave the castle. Keep it that way or I'll have your head." The king was finished with the Witcher after those words. He wanted Geralt far out of his sight. He turned on his heel quickly, his fur lined cloak spinning around his heels as he headed back inside, leaving the Witcher all alone to await the princess's return.

    ***


    The princess returned to the courtyard, completely changed out of her more regal attire. Verris now dawned a heavy black dress with a cord around her waist and a black fur cloak with a hood to conceal her identity if needed. The young princess was alone this time.

    "I know you are not happy about this." Verris walked up to the Witcher, feeling a bit more relaxed now that her parents weren't hanging over her shoulder.
    The Witcher was relieved once they had escaped the congested area of the market. Now, just walking down old cobblestone streets they didn't see much of anyone. It was much quieter and relaxed. "One of the only three women, huh? You must really know how to use that thing then." Egon teased, pointing down to her sword. He thought about her pulling that on him and he shuddered. What a wonderful first impression that would've been, cutting her down after helping her to her feet.

    "Truthfully, I don't know. I'm on business with a friend, a small village to the east of your kingdom has been having issues with monsters in their forest. That's where we were headed, but he insisted when he stop here and then he disappeared on me." Egon hadn't the slightest idea why he was giving all this information to the guard. It wasn't much detailed information, but still, Witchers weren't men of many words.

    "The princess, you mentioned? Even more impressive. One of the only women in the guard and also the princess's right hand." Now he almost wanted to see what she could do with that sword she carried. She had to be a master. "I don't think I caught your name?"

    @ katahdin
    January 18th, 2020 at 07:45pm
  • katahdin

    katahdin (100)

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    Geralt was pleased that the king did not like his suggestion, enjoying pissing him off, even if it probably wasn't the best strategy. And he'd certainly noticed how the girl had perked up at the suggestion, which made him feel a bit more justified in his actions. He stiffened though when the king angrily asked him why he'd come back. He didn't really know the answer, beside wanting to make sure that the girl was safe and take care of in case war broke out. He didn't think it was any more than that, and even if she did remember him leaving her this time around, it's not like she'd be happier coming with him anyway.

    With a sigh he took a seat at the edge of the fountain as he waited for the princess, taking the time to attempt to relax and get his thoughts in order. He'd need to find Egon sooner rather than later, but the more talkative Witcher would likely ask a lot of questions regarding Verris, and he wasn't sure he wanted that. Looking up when Verris return he moved to his feet, orange eyes studying her change of clothes before nodding in approval, turning to lead her out of the courtyard.

    He let out a little sigh when he heard her speak, noticing how much bolder she seemed now that her parents were gone. More specifically her father. "Would you be pleased if you were suddenly responsible for a child you never expected?" He asked as he led her past the guards and through the gates leading out into the city, eyes scanning the crowd for threats, to both him and the princess.
    Anfrih rolled her eyes at his teasing, adjusting her armor and cloak around her a bit as they walked. She preferred avoiding the busy streets when she could, even if it was her job to patrol the market and bustling streets for thieves and criminals. "The other two are fools. Only got accepted because they flashed their tits at the right people." She scoffed, obviously not happy about it. "Hard work gets you nowhere these days." She sighed.

    "You keep mentioning your friend. What sort of business in the city requires a Witcher to tag along?" She asked curiously. She wanted to ask a million questions about monsters and fighting techniques and magic, but she did her best to refrain, knowing he probably wouldn't be pleased about it. "What kind of monster are you off to hunt?" She asked instead, hoping it might lead to more adventure stories.

    She looked up at him with a small smile as he spoke about her being the princess's guard, giving a little humble shrug. She didn't think it was that impressive, and he figured he was just patronizing her, but at least he wasn't harassing her or worse. "That's because I didn't give it to you, just like how you didn't give me your name, Witcher." She teased, scrunching her nose as she tried to hide a laugh. "Anfrih. My name is Anfrih."
    January 18th, 2020 at 08:10pm
  • dezz

    dezz (100)

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    "You're not responsible for me." The princess was quick to correct him. "You could've been, I guess. But you aren't." She crossed her arms over her chest and kept her eyes away from him. It already felt like there was some weird tension between the Witcher and the young girl. "but I'm glad you showed up, even if I don't know you. I've never had the chance to leave the castle." She kept the hood to her cloak up over her head while they walked through the castle grounds. Even if she was excited to step out into her kingdom, she knew she'd have hell to pay if anyone became suspicious of who she was.

    If anything, the princess felt responsible for herself. It was clear to her that her father had wanted an heir. Every chance he got he reminded her of that. "Before you leave, I can pay you some coin for saving my mother all those years ago. Then you shouldn't feel the need to return." They walked up to the great gates of the castle and Verris watched as all the soldiers hesitated before letting them exit. No one here trusted a Witcher.
    "Egon." He returned the pleasantries as they continued their little walk. "I'm not even sure what business my friend has within the city. He's actually a Witcher, as well." He continued on his pattern of talking to much. Egon could tell the girl was curious, which was better than her being disgusted at the revelation of what he was. He'd answer her questions all day if it meant she wasn't ready to toss him out of the city.

    "I think this village has an issue with a wraith. What kind, I'm not sure of yet. All we've been told is that a few hunters have seen sightings of a ghoulish specter in the woods. We won't know for sure though until we actually investigate." He looked down at Anfrih and rose an eyebrow in her direction. It was peculiar to meet a stranger who wanted to hear all about his tales of adventure. He wouldn't really call them that, to him it was just another way to make a living, to ensure he had plenty of ale and a place to sleep at night. He could tell Anfrih had an adventurous spirit and something told him she wouldn't be just a royal guard forever.

    @ katahdin
    January 18th, 2020 at 08:35pm
  • katahdin

    katahdin (100)

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    Geralt simply hummed in response to her telling him that he wasn't actually in charge of her, knowing that that wasn't the case. By the Law of Surprise, she was his. He'd just been avoiding the responsibility for the past sixteen years. He frowned though when she mentioned that she'd never left the castle's walls, glancing over at her as they walked through the gates, noticing the hesitance on the part of the guards. "For someone who is supposed to be too sickly to leave the castle, you're very lively." He murmured in teasing. They walked for a while, the Witcher glancing around every so often to make sure that they weren't being followed. He wouldn't put it past the king to try to murder his daughter, especially how seeing how much he hated the poor girl.

    "I don't want your coin." He states simply as they got closer to the market, keeping his eyes on the street ahead of him, ignoring the dirty looks and whispers by those that they passed. Witchers weren't usually welcomed with open arms, so he was drawing quite a bit of attention to the pair at they walked. He did need coin, though. He'd had to repair his armor poorly one too many times, and was in need of a new set, along with more clothes. And it'd be nice to get some carrots for Roach. But that was why he'd brought Egon along with him, so they could travel between villages on their way south, fighting monsters and collecting coin.
    "Egon the Witcher." Anfrih mused teasingly, blinking in surprise when he mentioned that his friend was also a Witcher. "Don't Witchers usually avoid one another? I'm surprised to hear that you consider another one a friend, let alone travel with him." She fell a few steps behind him when someone purposefully knocked into her shoulder, the girl glaring daggers at the woman who had bumped into her before letting out a sigh and hurrying to catch up with the taller man.

    She perked up though when he began to talk about what kind of monster he believed he was going to go fight, listening curiously. She'd found a book in the royal library once when she was younger that told of all sorts of monsters, but she had no idea if any of it was true or not, so it was nice to speak to someone who'd actually encountered some of the things she'd read about in stories. "When I was a little girl I wanted to be a Witcher... But my mother said that I'd be lucky to be a baker's wife, like her." She said with a shrug. "She said that Witchers were never girls. She also said the same about members of the royal guard, but here I am." She gestured to the royal crest on her chest, letting out another sigh. "Too bad she died before I could prove her wrong."
    January 19th, 2020 at 12:34am
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    dezz (100)

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    Tess ran a hand through her dark hair, tucking a loose strand, that had fallen out of her braided hair, behind her ear. "Is that what my father told you? I was sickly?" At first Tess looked up at him in disbelief. That's what her father told people about her? The too ill princess to leave the castle? She looked around the city as they walked, worry written across her face. She was worried that people didn't even know she existed. "I'm not sick. I'm just not a boy."

    It had always been clear to her that her father hadn't been happy about her birth. She had always suspected it was due to him needing, or rather, wanting an heir. Not an heiress.

    The girl followed the Witcher into the marketside of the kingdom where an array of colored tents where set up and what seemed like a thousand people were all perusing them. What really shocked her was the amount of what appeared to be homeless families. You couldn't turn down a street or alley way without seeing at least one homeless person curled up against the bricks of the buildings. People lived this way? Under her father's rule? When she couldn't count the sad faces anymore, she finally stopped at a hopeless family of four, a mother with three starving children. She bent down to the mother and pulled off one of her bracelets, solid gold with encrusted rubies, and handed it to the woman. "Sell this for some food." She whispered, before patting the woman's hand and getting up to her feet again to quickly catch up with Geralt. She told herself to just keep walking and try not to think about it anymore.
    "Well, your mother is right. There never has been a female Witcher." Egon didn't say it so matter-of-factly, "whose to say there may never be one, though. And you're also not wrong about Witchers usually avoiding each other. But lately it's been a little harder to find jobs, more and more people now of days are shunning us." Egon raised an eyebrow at the woman who had purposefully bumped into Anfrih. "Are the people here not intimidated by guards?" He couldn't help but chuckle, trying to lighten the mood. It was clear the pair were similar, shunned and rejected by most people around them. Perhaps that is why they had found each other.

    The couple moved through the streets before coming to a beautiful garden with a monument in the center of it. Egon imaged it was for a prior king or some great hero because it was a statue of some man. The gardens surrounding him were beautiful though, rows and rows of hedges and multicolored flowers. "You don't need to be getting back to the princess, do you?" He only asked because he remembered the trinkets she had been buying.

    @ katahdin
    January 19th, 2020 at 04:36am
  • katahdin

    katahdin (100)

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    Geralt gave a simple nod of his head, confirming that her father had told him that she was sickly. He wished he knew the right words to comfort her, but he couldn't find them, instead reaching out a hand to gently pat her shoulder in an attempt to comfort her, although it was a bit awkward. "You have an elder brother, don't you? Why would the king be so upset at having a daughter when he already has a son?" He asked. Most kings were content when they had a male heir, and didn't care about the gender of any children they had after that, so it was strange that the King of Redania would be so upset over a female child when he already had his male heir.

    He watched her reaction as she took in the market, surprised to see her getting visibly upset over all of the peasants and beggars that she was seeing. He stopped when she did, watching as she pulled off one of her bracelets to give to the family, knowing that that one pieces of jewelry would buy them food and clothes that would last months. He also knew that it would paint a target on that family's back, and they'd be lucky if none of them were killed when it was stolen from them. But he didn't want to upset Verris further by pointing that out, and he wanted to keep moving, as with all the people watching him because he was a Witcher, there was bound to be someone who had noticed the princess's charity, and who would try to take advantage of her. Placing his hand on her back he led her further into the market, hoping perhaps they could disappear into the crowd, or at least be harder to track, although he didn't know the city as well as he probably should, and the last thing he wanted was to get cornered in some alleyway.

    "What do you do, if you're always cooped up in the castle?" He asked after a few moments of silence, wondering just how controlling her father was over her life.
    Anfrih hummed a little in thought as he spoke about Witchers, looking up at him. "Wouldn't traveling in groups put a bigger target on your backs?" She asked. She certainly knew that if there were two Witchers sighted together within the city walls, the entire guard would probably be put on alert. She shook her head when he asked if people within the city weren't intimidated by guards, rubbing at her shoulder sorely. She'd injured her shoulder during training a few months ago, and it was still healing, which meant it hurt considerably more than it should have when the woman had bumped into her. "No, they respect the guards. Only the ones with cocks though."

    When they reached the garden she relaxed a bit, realizing that they were rather close to the small apartment that she had been given upon her promotion. She usually only slept there, given that she was pretty much constantly with the Princess, but she supposed that since it was her day off, she could maybe spend some time tidying up the place. She looked up at Egon when he spoke, glancing down at the bag of things she'd bought for the princess before shaking her head. "No, I'm in no hurry. It's actually my day off, but I figured I could buy the princess's things today, so I could deliver them to her tomorrow morning... Do you have to be somewhere?" She asked curiously. He had mentioned more than once that he was here to help his friend with his business, and even though he'd been walking with her for a while, she knew he'd likely have to go find his friend sooner or later.
    January 19th, 2020 at 06:06am
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    dezz (100)

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    Verris tensed when Geralt's hand moved to her lower back, guiding her close to him. He had also seemed to pick up his pace a bit, which the princess wasn't sure if that should alarm her or not. "Usually spend time with my guard Anfrih. Sometimes I get bored enough to help the handmaidens with their tasks, sometimes my mother makes me learn to knit, sometimes I read," Verris was too embarrassed to say most of her time was spent alone in her room, staring out the window. "Why do you ask?"

    Then a brilliant curiosity went off in Verris's head. Hear she was, saddened over her own boring life that she completely forgot who she was walking next to. "Geralt!" She exclaimed, grabbing his wrist as they walked. "Can you tell me about some of your travels?" Moments before she had felt absolutely nothing towards the Witcher, if not except for distaste, and now, she felt a completely different way. Most of the books she read were about knights saving princesses from dragons, or boys fighting giants or some other fantastical print, but, here she was walking side by side someone who actually lived it. "The monsters you've slain? Have you saved any princesses?" She instantly let go of his arm and pulled her arm back to her side quickly.

    "Sorry." The princess instantly grew quiet again, pulling her cloak tighter around herself. She probably made him uncomfortable, she didn't want to upset him with all of her questions, or annoy him any further than he already was. He was already aggravated he was having to put up with her, she could tell.
    "That's probably why Geralt disappeared from me the moment we stepped through the gates." Egon couldn't help his thunderous laughter at the thought of it. He stopped laughing when she mentioned they didn't respect her only because of her womanhood. "Fuck that." Egon grunted, looking at the young guard out of the corner of his eye as they entered the garden. "No, no, I've got nothing but time until Geralt comes looking for me. Hope you don't mind some company for a little while longer."

    A smile spread across the witcher's face, hoping the girl wouldn't mind a monster slayer hanging over her shoulder for a few more hours. Or however long it would take his friend, he wasn't quite sure. "But if I become a bother, just kick me out of your hair, okay?" He chuckled, a twinkle in his sharp, icy eyes. He turned his attention back to the gardens, admiring all of the perfectly planted tulips and roses. Anfrih had caused a few questions of his own to pop up in his head. Why did his witcher friend have business with city walls? And such secretive business that he couldn't have at least told Egon where he would be going? He wondered if Geralt might be in danger, but he was sure if some trouble started up with a witcher inside the city gates they would hear about it.

    @ katahdin
    January 19th, 2020 at 06:28am
  • katahdin

    katahdin (100)

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    Her life didn't seem so bad to Geralt. A bit boring, maybe, but not so terrible. He instinctively tensed and moved his hand to his word when the princess suddenly said his name, eyes scanning the crowd for any sign of danger he might have missed. He relaxed when she simply asked to hear about his travels, his hand moving away from his sword with a sigh as they continued to walk. He was glad that the princess seemed interested in something and had perked up, although he also noticed that she was quick to apologize and tug her cloak further around her, like a snail hiding in it's shell.

    He chuckled softly when she asked if he'd saved any princesses, glancing down at her with a faint smile. "A few." He said simply as they continued to walk through the market. He wondered if he should offer to stop and buy her something from one of the stalls, but he also knew he didn't really have the coin to spare, and that any vendor he approached would either refuse to sell to him or triple the price for no reason other than because he was a Witcher.
    Anfrih found his laugh infectious, and soon she was laughing along with him. It must have been a sight, a royal guard and a Witcher laughing with one another. She remembered reading at one point that Witchers weren't supposed to feel emotions, but it seemed to her like the one she was speaking to felt things. Or at least had learned to seem like he did.

    She laughed again when he practically told her that she was stuck with him, rolling her eyes teasingly as she shook her head. She'd stepped away to look at some of the flowers growing in the garden, admiring the daffodils that were blooming. Although, she turned around when he mentioned his companion's name, eyes widening slightly in excitement. "Geralt? As in Geralt of Rivia? The Witcher from the song?" She asked curiously, humming the tune to herself as she leaned down to pick a few of the flowers, knowing she had a vase somewhere in her tiny apartment that she could put them in. They'd help brighten the place up a bit, make it feel a little more like home.

    "Do you have any songs written about you?" She asked with a little teasing smirk, looking up at him as she stood, before gesturing toward one of the streets leading away from the garden. "I should bring these back to my home and change out of my uniform, before I get robbed.." She wanted to continue their conversation, especially because she thought he was interesting, not to mention handsome.. but if he didn't want to continue spending time with her, she wouldn't force him to.
    January 19th, 2020 at 07:19am
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    dezz (100)

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    Verris raised an eyebrow once he answered, wondering what he had saved them from. Probably not a dragon. She had felt a bit guilty for startling him, watching his hand instantly shoot to the hilt of his sword. "Sorry for scaring you." She teased him, feeling a little more relaxed about the man now. "What kinds of monsters are real?" She decided to simply ask one question at a time, hoping that wouldn't annoy him. Perhaps if she could get him to like her, even a little bit, he'd be willing to let her leave with him. After all, the Law of Surprise called for that right? Could she convince him?

    Her eyes drifted down to the necklace, it hung proudly over his armor. A pendant with a wolf's head inside. No, I don't think I could convince him, she thought to herself. She could already hear his voice in her head telling her the life he led wasn't anything for a princess. It was an easy enough excuse for him to give. She would just get in his way. Maybe if she asked Anfrih to teach her how to handle a sword herself, maybe that would help convince him.... She had gotten so lost in her own thoughts that when he began to answer her she had almost forgotten what the question was.
    "No, no songs about me." He shook his head, almost proud of his answer, "And I'd like to keep it that way. That little dandelion gets on my last nerve." He was of course, referring to the bard who had written the ballad of the white wolf. "When he tags along with Geralt, I make sure to take my leave." He had grown more stern now, though he wasn't really sure why himself. He just didn't like thinking of people who annoyed him, and oh how that bard annoyed him.

    He perked up at the thought of retiring to the girl's home with her. "Lead the way." The smile came back to his face as he watched her picking the daffodils that were blooming all around them. How lovely she looked with the sun's rays washing over her pale skin, her hair falling forward towards the earth whenever she leaned over to pluck another beautiful flower. He shook his head, wondering why he had been watching her so closely in the first place. She was a very pretty girl, but that was just it. A pretty face, one that he would no doubt forget the next morning when Geralt and himself were far away from Redania. He didn't understand how wrong he was in his own thoughts.

    "Has that song really made it all this way? You know it's not even accurate right?" Perhaps he had gotten a little jealous at the way she had responded to hearing his name. He had done his own amazing feats too, all of which were just as deserving of a song.

    @ katahdin
    January 19th, 2020 at 07:30am
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    katahdin (100)

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    Geralt glanced down at her when she apologized for scaring him, shaking his head a little. "You didn't scare me, Princess." He said simply, thinking over her question about monsters. "Most of the ones you've heard of are real. Have any specific ones you want to know about? Looking for a new pet?" He asked teasingly with a slight chuckle, keeping her close as the market grew more crowded. He could tell she was thinking, and he could only hope it wasn't anything bad. She seemed like a decent enough girl, and she didn't seem to like her life here, but it was certainly safer here than it was traveling with him.

    He was drawn from his thoughts when a small rock hit the side of his head, hand moving to his sword as he glared in the direction that it had come from, only to be met with shouts telling him to leave the city: "Get out of here, Witcher! Your kind aren't welcome here!" With a sigh he began to lead the princess away from the market, hoping to find quieter streets where they wouldn't be bothered. "You're not hurt, are you?" He asked once they were away from the crowd. He'd felt a few things hit him, and he worried that perhaps she'd been hit as well.
    Anfrih laughed a little as he complained about the bard, shaking her head. "I believe I met him once. He came to Redania a few months ago, that's how I first heard the song." She explained as they walked. "I also remember him spending most of his time at the tavern trying to convince me to spend the night with him, in exchange for a song written about the female royal guard." She rolled her eyes at the memory, although a faint smirk appeared on her lips. "His face was much improved with the black eye I gave him. And I'm sure you can tell me all about it's inaccuracies, and about your own adventures."

    She took a few steps ahead of him as the streets narrowed, turning the corner to head to her apartment, but there was a brief commotion, a clash of metal and a grunt before there was silence. When Egon rounded the corner the vendor from earlier lay dead in the mud, his throat cut and a bloody dagger in his hands. Anfrih had drawn her own dagger, which was bloody as well, the girl leaning against the wall of the alley as she pressed a hand against her side with a wince. The vendor's dagger had found a break in her armor after giving her cheek a good slash, and when she pulled her fingers away to see them covered in blood she winced, looking back at the Witcher with a frown. "Figures.." she sighed before pushing away from the wall with a groan, keeping her hand pressed to her side to slow the bleeding as she continued the last few yards to her home, where she knew she had bandages and a needle to sew up her wound.
    January 19th, 2020 at 05:22pm
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    dezz (100)

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    The thought of Anfrih unloading her fist in the bards face had a other large smile breaking onto his own. "He deserved it." Egon laughed, imagining how the scene must've went his head. He didn't hate Jaskier, he was just very, very annoying. The mention of him trying to get Anfrih to sleep with him wasn't a surprise to the Witcher's ears, either. That lute player was always trying to get into someone's bed because he didn't have his own. Sad.

    Egon was shocked when he found Anfrih, her head pressed against a wound in her side. She had disappeared in front of him, rounding a corner quickly into a small pocket of people. He has only lost her for a second and that was all it had taken. Seeing the dead vendor on the ground, blood pouring from his throat, sent him into a shock. Not for him, but for Anfrih.

    If you would've just kept up with her, you could've protected her, he couldn't help curse himself. He stepped over the dead vendor, not even giving him a second glance. He was nothing to Egon. He hurried up behind Anfrih and held his large hand over hers, his other hand holding her shoulder to help her. "Its clear your fine on your own, but let me help." He didn't want to hear her argue with him, so he decided to nip it in the bud before she could start.

    Holding onto her now, he began to wonder why he was so surprised. He felt the warm thick blood seep through her fingers and onto his and it only served to make him angrier. Why did he feel the need to protect her? "Did he only attack you because of the choice words you have him back in the market?" Egon scoffed, annoyed someone, especially a man, could be so petty.
    "No, I'm fine," the princess lied to the Witcher. "They had great aim." Verris tried to make light of the situation, teasing him once again. Truthfully, two of the rocks had pelted her between the shoulder blades and she could feel her skin stinging where they had made an impact. "Do people treat you like that everywhere you go?" She ignored the pain in her back, continuing to walk forward with him. Verris didn't want his fake sympathy.

    "There should be a garden somewhere... Anfrih has always told me about it. To the east side of the city, I believe. It overlooks the sea, she always says it's pretty quiet there. Could we try to find it?"

    She was hoping if they could, it would be a nice place for her to sit and enjoy the freedom she had away from the castle. They could take in private and he wouldn't have to worry about anymore rocks hitting him in the head.

    @ katahdin
    January 19th, 2020 at 08:08pm
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    katahdin (100)

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    Anfrih tensed as Egon placed his hand over hers, not because she was uncomfortable being so close to him, but because the added pressure of his hand over her wound hurt. She gave a faint laugh as he insisted on helping, although it was quickly replaced by a wince when laughing proved to hurt too. Not to mention the cut on her cheek stung awfully bad. "Are you going to insist I give you all of my coin in payment for your help?" She asked teasingly. By the time they reached her front door he was practically holding her up, the girl having lost a decent amount of blood. After fumbling for her key and unlocking the door she let him lead her inside, breaking free of his arms once the door was shut to shuffle over to the table, beginning to take off her armor so she could tend to the wound, although her hand was shaking, which made it more difficult than usual.

    "There should be bandages and herbs and a needle and thread in one of the cupboards by the fire.." she informed him as she finally got the last of the pieces of the top half of her armor off, slumping down in the chair by the table. Her undershirt was soaked in blood around the wound, and the blood dripping down her cheek and neck from the slash to her face didn't help, although both injuries could have been worse.

    "I'm pretty sure I've yelled at him a few times about his illegal wares... That, and I think I beat the shit out of his son during training, and I don't think he really appreciated that." She tried to smile as she looked over at him, but it was clear she was in a decent amount of pain. "Don't look so upset, Witcher. The worst it'll do is scar and make for a good story. I'm sure you have plenty of scars with good stories behind them." She teased lightly, hoping to lighten the mood a bit.
    Geralt nodded with a little hum, noticing how her shoulders tensed and shifted like she'd been hit, although he didn't want to say anything about it. If she were seriously injured he'd know, but a little bruise from a rock wouldn't kill the princess. "Sometimes they throw worse." He said simply in reply to her question. The life of a Witcher was a hard one, and he hoped that seeing how everyone treated him would make the girl understand why he couldn't bring her with him, why he'd never come to get her after she was born.

    He nodded as she asked if they could find the garden her friend had spoke about, leading her away from the market and down the quieter streets. He thought he caught a whiff of Egon's scent along the path they were taking, along with the smell of blood in the distance, and he could only hope the other Witcher was staying out of trouble. Soon enough they found the garden, and Geralt led the girl over to a bench so that she could sit and rest.

    "Who is this Anfrih you keep mentioning? Your chambermaid?" He asked. He doubted she could have many friends given her father's strictness and how shy she seemed, so he assumed that the girl she was speaking of had to be a servant of hers.
    January 19th, 2020 at 08:53pm
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    dezz (100)

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    "You're laughing because you can't see how pale you've gotten." Egon wasted no time heading straight to the cupboards by the fire pit. He gathered all of the necessary things in his arms and bringing them back to her. Taking the seat next to her at the table he pushed the herbs towards her, "I'm not really familiar with herbs for humans." He couldn't help feel embarrassed for the cluelessness. "Witcher potions are deadly to humans. I could kill you if I tried, however..." He picked up the needle, "I can stitch you up."

    He was trying to keep a smile on his face, but he couldn't completely hide the anger he felt inside. It was strange, he hadn't felt angry in so long, or protective over anyone... "Well, the bastard got what he deserved, at least." His eyes flickered up to the gash on her cheek and before even thinking to ask her if she had a rag, he ripped a piece of fabric off of his shirt and held it to her face to stop the bleeding there.
    "Anfrih is a royal guard, my protector. She's been my best friend for a very long time." Verris stopped by a row of hedges, placing her hands over the leaves. Just past it was the sea, a brilliant light blue under the glistening sun, it also seemed to sparkle.

    "This might sound pathetic, but I've never seen the ocean before." The city blocked it from every window she could see out of in the castle. The air out here was so fresh and she could smell the salt water. She broke her gaze from the sea to look back over to Geralt, seeing his orange eyes absolutely glowing from the sun's ray's. His pupils looked like fire.

    @ katahdin
    January 20th, 2020 at 12:00am