The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

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Nikola
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Nikola » Fri Aug 14, 2020 5:40 pm

She looked around the clearing as he spoke of camping there tonight. It was pleasant enough and they had brought gear to do that. She thought she spied just the right place to set their bedrolls and began mentally preparing the campsite as she nodded in response. He was right to try to find a reason for the creatures to have come so far inland again. Last time they had done a great deal of damage to the mines. There had been no sign of the creatures until they had attacked from the lake today, but their presence here was curious at the very least, and may bode ill for the land or even the kingdom, depending on what they could find. The King would need to hear of this, and it would be best if they brought an answer to the question of why they were here when they did report it.

She smiled up at him and wrapped her arms around his waist as he gave her a big hug.
“I’m sure we can find some way to entertain ourselves,” she replied and winked back at him, feeling her face flush with just a hint of color. As he left to gather wood and spices, she returned to the wagon and began pulling out what they would need for camp. There should be a half moon tonight and both of them had very good night vision so no lanterns would be needed, she decided. She gathered up their sleeping gear and carried it to the area she had seen earlier. After clearing the spot of loose rocks and fallen twigs, she spread their bedrolls on the ground and made sure anything they might need was within reach.

By the time she had finished, TK had returned and went to work on the hog. Back at the wagon, she went through the basket of food that had been sent with them and selected a loaf of bread and some potatoes to add to the meal. TK might not eat them, but there was enough for two in case he did. She wrapped the potatoes in a cloth and tucked them around the edge of the fire, away from the flame but covered in the glowing embers of the fire to cook while the hog roasted. Once she had finished with that, she sat back to watch TK with the hog.
“Let me know if you need any help,” she offered before settling into a comfortable position on the ground to watch him work.
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Texas_Knight » Thu Sep 10, 2020 11:44 am

With the hog prepared for the pit he carefully put the beast over the fire and sat down to rest next to Nikola. He picked up a bottle of brandy and took a good drink while recollecting on the events and what had, and had not, been found. After a while he spoke. "I think these were either left over from the last time, or perhaps they were blown in by a storm. They seem to have been isolated to this one pond, but we'll keep our eyes one the lookout for any other signs that may give clues to more as we travel." He noticed that his love had brought out some veggies and other items of food. That would be a good compliment to the meal. It would still be an hour or so before the hog was cooked, if it cooked fast. Otherwise it may be a couple hours.

He decided to change since things were more relaxed. He walked to the wagon and made the shift, dressed in human clothes and walked back to sit with Nikola. "Now where were we?" he said with a smile. He wrapped his arms around her and pulled her in close, kissed her and laid back on the bedroll. As they laid there they talked about many things that were in the future and the arrangements that would have to be made. The meat was starting to smell like it was well on its way to being cooked and the sounds of the forest had returned. The half moon was nearing the apex and the world seemed right. "Tomorrow we should be in the next village and can stay there and visit with the people who live there. I'll introduce us to them and let them know that they will be taken care of if they find themselves in need of protection. I believe I'll stay in this form so as not to frighten them. But I'll let the village chief know of my other form and let him decide how to handle that with his people."

He kissed Nikola and then checked the meat. "Still needs a bit longer." he said as he sat back down next to her.
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Nikola
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Nikola » Wed Oct 07, 2020 6:38 pm

The aroma of roasting hog smelled wonderful and made Nikola’s mouth water as she waited for TK to change. When he returned from the wagon, it was in his human form which she still found surprising, so accustomed as she was to his Orc form. Yet it was a pleasing form and easy for her to wrap her arms around as he kissed her and pulled her to the ground beside him. They talked for a long time, watching the stars as they twinkled into existence in the darkening night sky.

“I think it is wise to approach the villages in your human form initially. They will need to learn your other forms as well, but this one should cause less concern for the first meeting. You only get one first meeting, after all,” she smiled as he left to go check on the meat, returning back to sit next to her again. She had risen to a sitting position as she waited for him and picked up a loose twig with which she played absentmindedly. She considered the preparations TK was doing with his lands for the people who already lived there and wondered about her own estate. Her work at the castle kept her fairly busy and she had not even made a plan yet to tour her lands to meet the people who might live there. She would learn from this trip, she decided, and make a plan once they were finished with TK’s lands.

Eventually the meat was ready, as were the potatoes, and the bread was warm. She unpacked some butter for the potatoes and bread, and they feasted like royals on the wild fare under the stars. Sated, they banked the fire and covered the meat so it would still be good when they arose in the morning, and then settled in for the night. It felt good to be out in the woods under the stars with the one she loved most next to her and she fell asleep with a smile on her face.
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Texas_Knight » Mon Nov 30, 2020 11:50 pm

As the sun was just showing the first lights on the horizon TK was up and moving about. He was busy putting some meat in a pan on the fire that was rekindled from the previous night coals. Some bacon, eggs and hot klahua with cream was on tap for breakfast. As the meal was nearing done he gently woke his sleeping beauty. "Nikola dear." he whispered as he held a cooked piece of bacon under her nose "breakfast is almost ready." As she stirred he kissed her cheek and went back to the fire.

As she joined him by the fire he held out her plate already filled with food. "Eat, my love. Today we will move to the village and meet with the local leader. I've packed everything except these few wares to make the best of our time this morning. While we're not in a hurry, I'd like to arrive before the day gets too active in the village."

Once they both completed their meal TK set about cleaning the cookware in the small lake and putting it away in the wagon. Bedrolls were stowed and soon they were one their way to the small village. It occurred to him that the village didn't have a name, or if it did, it was unknown to him. "Do you dear, happen to know the names of any of the villages outside the city walls? I just realized that I have never heard the names of any places out in the local woods."
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Nikola » Mon Dec 07, 2020 3:50 pm

The dancing xanthreels faded into the shadows as the smell of bacon pierced her world of dreams and enticed her to swim to the surface of wakefulness. Sapphire eyes peered out from beneath dark lashes to find a slice of bacon under her nose. She smiled sleepily and snatched the bacon with her teeth, reaching up to caress TK’s cheek as she chewed. He kissed her cheek and left her to get ready. She finished the bacon and stretched lazily before rising and taking care of her morning ablutions. Once dressed, she saw to the horses, giving them each a measure of oats to enjoy before joining her beloved at the fire, accepting the plate of food he offered her gratefully.

She let him talk about the plans for the day as she enjoyed the fruits of his labor, savoring every bite of the delicious breakfast. She’d always felt that simple fare cooked over an open fire in the great outdoors was superior to even Cook’s superb meals, not that she would ever tell her that.
“I think that’s an excellent idea,” she agreed to his plan to get to the village early to meet with the local leader. She helped him clean up and load the bedrolls into the wagon, hopping up beside him as they prepared to take off.

When he asked about the names of places out in the local woods, she searched her memory to come up with a distant memory.
“Where is that map?” she asked. After he found the parchment and handed it to her, she spread it out and studied it, trying to pull up the memory of some of the old tomes documenting tax collections and land values throughout the kingdom. Most of the records centered around the main towns and peasant villages, but she had been interested to learn there were a number of tiny hamlets included in the listings. As she studied the map, she noticed a grove of oak trees surrounding the little village they were headed to. “I remember this one,” she exclaimed. “Oakheart! I remember because I thought the name was appropriate because of the grove there,” she said pointing to the marks on the map indicating a small, wooded area. “I wonder if it is as lovely as the name sounds?” she asked.

The road was not well kept, but passable, as they entered the wood. It was still cool in the morning air beneath the canopy of leaves filtering the sunlight as it sought to banish shadows from the wood. They eventually passed through the wood, entering the tiny hamlet through a gated fence that appeared to surround the village. At least there was a broken gate leaning against an old split rail fence and she could see from the weeds growing up through the slats of the gate that it had been in that position for some time. She was gratified to see an old wooden sign with the faded letters spelling out "Welcome to Oakheart." The street, if you could call it that, passed through the center of the hamlet. She could tell that the deeply rutted dirt path would become nearly impassable during a heavy rain. A few small cottages and huts lined the street on both sides with fields spreading out behind them. They quickly reached what seemed to be the town center where there was an area that appeared to be set aside for a market, but the few stalls there were empty. On the far side of the market was a modest low building that she guessed was what served as the town hall of the little hamlet.
“I think that might be where we’ll find the mayor, or whatever the leader of this little hamlet is called,” she told TK, nodding toward the building. “Are you ready?” she asked, giving him an encouraging smile.
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Texas_Knight » Sat Dec 19, 2020 10:42 am

Entering the town TK first noticed that the path was in dire need of repair and made a mental note to put that on his to-do list. The next was the lack of market activity "I wonder if they use the marketplace at all" he said out loud as a thought to himself. He would inquire about that as well. The sign would be an easy replacement, He noticed outside the town that there was evidence of wildlife and big game, he noticed hog and bear tracks, along with some fresh tail markings of Yvyrm and Zyrk. So there was no lack of food in the meat category at least.

As they reached the town center they stopped at the market as they looked at the building across the marketplace. TK nodded "Yes, I think you are right." then he whispered "The residents don't seem too trusting of strangers, let's head to the Hall and see who we can find. But let's leave everything here and walk over there, it'll show trust and no fear. You know, set an example, leave all weapons here."

He dismounts from the wagon and offers a hand to help Nikki down. They wind their way through the market stalls, looking inside the ones they pass by to see if there are signs of recent use. There are a few that show signs of use and he smiles to himself to know that there are active trades being made here. It shows that they trust one another even though they may be leery of outsiders. As they get to the other side and to the Hall's steps they take a moment to read anything that might be on the bulletin board. There are only a couple items and they are dated about a month or so before. Nothing new really. TK takes the lead up the steps and opens the door to the Hall.

There is a man in the hall coming toward the door to greet them. It seems more out of duty than desire. "Greetings travelers, welcome to Oakheart. I am the Burgomaster of this humble village. My name is Villuhamne." TK's keen eye saw that the man was armed and his demeanor, while not betrayed by his words, was one of suspicion and distrust not unlike the faces he saw in the windows as he they made their way through the market place. TK smiled and invited, by motion, for Nikola to stand beside him as he introduced them to the man.

"I am Viscount of Northwood and Royal Guard of Fenia, Texas_Knight and this is my beloved, The Countess Nikola of Fenshire. We are discovering the Northwood lands and meeting those that call the land home to see if there are any needs that I may provide." TK presented himself as a provider rather than a ruler as he knew the latter would sour the situation. At this introduction the Burgomaster seemed to relax a bit and breathed an audible sigh. "I am taking notes and making lists of things that are needed throughout the land of Northwood so that I may make plans to improve the lands for all that live here. Is there anything that you can think of that needs attention?"
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Nikola » Sat Dec 19, 2020 3:45 pm

Nikola nodded her agreement at TK’s suggestion of leaving everything in the wagon and walking from the town center to the building they assumed to be what passed for a town hall. She was not quite as trusting as TK and was tempted to use her power to protect their belongings, but if there was anyone with keen enough vision, they would see the protections and since he wished to portray trust and no fear, she agreed to leave it unguarded. Although they were leaving all their weapons in the wagon, she herself was a weapon and TK was a skilled warrior, so she had no fear for their personal safety.

She smiled at TK as he handed her down from the wagon. Quickly brushing down the front of her dress she slipped her hand into the crook of his elbow and walked alongside him through the market, noting that the stalls that seemed to still be in use were well kept if crudely built. As they approached their destination, she released his arm to let him take the lead up the steps to the hall, following in behind him. Once inside, she joined him at his side at his invitation, smiling and nodding politely as he introduced her to the man who called himself Villuhamne. She remained silent as TK informed the burgomaster of his intentions.

The man visibly relaxed once he realized that they were there to help the village. He bowed awkwardly to them both, seemingly unused to such formalities, yet knowing what was generally expected for the nobility.
”I am relieved to hear that we have a Viscount again. Oakheart has been long without one. We have done what we can, but I’m sure you saw when you came in, there is much that needs doing. The folk are a stalwart people and good of heart, but we are wary of strangers here. The last noble to pass through here nearly wiped us out of the provisions we had set aside to get us through the winter months.” He stopped suddenly and a look of concern entered his eyes, as though he may have thought he had said too much, or would be punished for his lack of respect for those cruel noblemen who had brought harm to his people. She spoke up quickly in an effort to allay those fears.

“Please be at peace, Villuhamne. We have brought our own provisions with us and have no need of any more from your people. As my Lord has said, we only wish to learn what is needed that we may help to improve your situation if we can.” She referred to TK has her lord to show deference to his leadership in these lands.
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Texas_Knight » Sat Dec 26, 2020 11:13 am

TK heard what the man had said, and what had not been said, about the provisions. "So you are short on provisions right now? I think we have brought some extra supplies with us. If you'll come to the wagon and gather a few of your men to assist, I'll be glad to share what we have to help out until I can get back to Wyvernston and send a proper supply wagon to your village." TK turns to look at Nikola and smiles "I think we can get by with a little less than we have brought. Between the two of us we can hunt for food quite effectively." TK gave a wink and motioned towards the door. "Shall we?"

The Burgomaster smiled, but still seemed hesitant "I don't know how many I can get, but I'll see what I can do. If I tell'em it's a help or starve sitiatin they may see they have nae choice." With that they all headed out the door and across the marketplace to the wagon with Villuhamne leading the way and TK and Nikola following behind. As they reached the wagon it was undisturbed as TK uncovered the supplies. The Burgomaster's eyes went wide and he hurried off saying he'd be back with men in a moment.

TK elected to not disclose his secret to the townsfolk based upon their reclusiveness and suspicion of outsiders. Perhaps later, on another meeting, he would let the Burgomaster in on the secret.
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Nikola » Mon Jan 04, 2021 8:24 pm

She smiled and nodded in agreement as TK suggested they could get by on less than they brought in order to help share with the townsfolk. He was a good creature, this beloved of hers, and she admired him more than he knew. After the Burgomaster hurried off, she began to help TK sort through the supplies, separating out their personal belongings and what little they would need to keep for the road so that when Villuhamne returned with several villagers, everything was ready for them to unload.

TK had, of course, helped the men carry the supplies, but none would let her lift a thing, so she had been somewhat free to observe. The men were wary at first, and suspicious, but by the time they had carted off the last of the supplies, they seemed slightly more relaxed. They were still wary, but the suspicion that had been obvious in their eyes seemed to have paled. That was a good sign, she thought, as she watched the last of them carry his burden into the town hall where Villuhamne would oversee the distribution of goods to those who needed them most.

She glanced around the town square, such as it was, and noted curtains fluttering closed at a couple of the cottages, indicating that the inhabitants had been watching. She would have liked to meet some of the women and assure them of TK’s honest intentions, but none had ventured out yet, and it was not her place to go pounding on doors, demanding to meet everyone. In time, she hoped, the townsfolk would understand that TK meant to manage his lands fairly and that they could trust him to do what was right and what he felt was best for them all.

She had remained at the wagon, more to stay out of the way than anything else, and smiled when TK and Villuhamne returned walking and chatting together as the other men departed back to their homes, or fields, or wherever they had come from. She had not noticed an Inn or tavern in the little town and wondered whether there might be such a place perhaps away from the village center. It would be time for lunch soon and she was not sure whether TK intended to remain here for the rest of the day or if they were going to move on.
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Re: The Barony of Wyvernston [ORP]

Post by Texas_Knight » Mon Jan 18, 2021 11:58 am

Once the supplies were unloaded TK and the townsmen talked a bit and then dispersed to their separate ways. The Burgomaster and TK walked back to the wagon, spoke a bit more and prepared for TK and Nikola to head on their way. "Oh, one more thing Villuhamne. If you come the my estate, make sure you go to the front sentry gate. Wouldn't want you to get eaten by a wild animal." With a chuckle at that and a final wave of the arm TK and Nikola were off in the wagon.

They travelled a bit thinking about what they had seen and the Burgomaster's, Villuhamne, words about how the village was doing and the repairs that were needed. "I think, once we get back, I need to send a unit there to fix things and provide security. A unit of 5 should do the job I think. Did you know that Villuhamne is fond of brandy as well, but rarely comes across it in the sparse trade caravans that come through. I think I'll send a few bottles from the cellar with the unit. Besides being in need of a few repairs and a bit of security, they seem to be doing well enough."

They had been riding along about 3 hours and were nearing the north border of the Wyvernston lands and entering the at large area of Northwood. The path was getting a bit rougher but was still negotiable enough for the wagon as they made their was slower. The land was more flat with just a few hills, but the ground was softer than before with a red tint that is common with the name of the County of Redmoor. The path was now seen as a line of reddish dirt that wound through the way. There were various ponds and redwood trees that had seen some harsh conditions but thrived despite their environment. This land was not for the faint of heart and it took a hearty being to live out here in the wilds. As they travelled another two hours the land suddenly came through a very large clearing, and there in the middle of the clearing was a huge estate that had seen much better times. From afar it looked, rough, to say the least. TK stopped the wagon and looked at Nikola. The sun was fading in the short winter days and they could either go investigate the estate, or they could spend the night at the edge of the clearing and start investigating and rummaging in the morning, he would leave that to his love.

He spoke with a bit of surprise in his voice "Oh wow! That was quite a transition!" he said looking over his shoulder at the dense woods and then back to the clearing where the estate stood. "I think this might be the main estate of Northwood." The way he said it was almost in disbelief that they had actually found it, and that it was his. Just from the view they had it appeared to be twice the size of Wyvernston and while it was not set on a hillside or any sort of noticeable defensive position, he was sure there must be a tactical reason it was set in this location. "Shall we continue on and see what lies inside, or do we wait till first light? I'm inclined to wait just to be on the safe side so we don't get any nasty surprises, and I am hungry. But I leave the decision to you, my love."


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