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The year is 2150, the month is February. The winter is getting colder, and the Arkers are nowhere near prepared for the harsh winter, especially not now that their supply runs to Mount Weather have become completely nonexistent. Despite the lack of Arker presence in the mountain, the tensions have not died down, and with the return of one of Mount Weather's missing residents, revenge on the Sky People will be top priority. In Arkadia, following the damage Clarke and the others caused in Azgeda, Chancellor Griffin and the Guard must begin taking action to prepare for a war with the Ice Nation that is well on its way. Little do they know, the war has already begun with the arrival of a certain Azgedan spy, and what lies ahead is far worse than anything they have faced yet.
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 a peaceful passerby, niylah
Callista
 Posted: Jun 28 2017, 12:45 AM
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rikru was a territory that Callista had come to really enjoy being in. There was something about the forests that was serene to her. She enjoyed riding the trails that weaved through the foliage and the tree coverage gave her plenty of places to sleep and make camp each night. It was much harder to avoid weather out in the openness of the Plains. There was a trading post somewhere near here, she remembered coming across it during her last time in Trikru. But she had been headed home and so had not bothered to take the time to stop. She wasn't on a time constraint right now, so wanted to get a better look at the place. See if maybe it was somewhere she could add to her regular route. Somewhere worth giving her continuous business.

She rode her stallion, Tyr, through the now familiar woods. Until she saw the building come view. It wasn't large, but it was a decent size and there were lots of different wares outside of it. She could only imagine what the inside might hold as well. She grabbed a satchel from one of her saddle bags. Inside which she had some things that could be traded should she find something worthwhile inside. She tossed Tyr's reins over a hitching post. Not tying them off. The stallion knew better than to wander when he wasn't supposed to. If his tack was on, he was to stay put. If she took it off, he was free to explore. He never went far and he always came back. She never worried about him in general.

With a tentative push, she felt the wooden door give way to her hand and she stepped inside. Letting her eyes adjust for a moment to the lower light inside the building. Once they had adjusted, she glanced around her before looking to the counter where a woman stood. With a smile she introduced herself "Callista Kom Ingranronakru." She had no problems stating what clan she came from, she just usually kept her exact position in that clan a bit more on the down low. As the last living heir in her family line, she didn't like advertising who she was. Not that she couldn't defend herself if needed, but she did prefer to not fight if she could manage it.

Her feet carried her around the shop. Looking at trinkets and other things here and there. "This is a wonderful shop you have" she complimented. Callie had always been extremely friendly and liked to get to know people. She had no reason to assume that people weren't also friendly unless they gave her a reason to believe so. In her travels she had connected with more people than she could count. Learning something new from each of them. She was someone who valued experiences, connections, and knowledge. Her father wanted her to stay home, learn to be the leader she eventually would be. But she just couldn't do it. Her spirit was too free, she needed to explore.


Niylah
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Niylah
 Posted: Jul 1 2017, 05:26 PM
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The day had been quiet, with little more than the sound of birds flitting by one of the small windows as they dove for the nuts and seeds she’d lost when she’d sat outside to eat earlier, and Niylah supposed she should have been thankful for that fact. It seemed her father was never around as much those days, and she found the seemingly endless stretches of time alone tiring. Logically, she knew that it was the hours she spent worrying over his safety that left her feeling so physically and mentally drained, but that knowledge didn’t make the situation any better at all. She wanted him to come home for good and leave the traveling to their visitors, but she knew he never would. Perhaps being there still brought too many painful memories of what they’d lost. For Niylah it wasn’t nearly as hard; she’d realized years ago that her mother’s face had slowly begun to slip from her mind until she could only recall a handful of important features.

Brushing the hair out of her face, she bent to grab a pile of skins that had been brought to her two days before by one of the rare traders from beyond Azgeda’s borders. She wondered if the majority of Trikru would have declared her a traiitor for the opportunities she gave them to prove they weren’t as cruel as everyone said, but she hoped to never find out. The peace between the clans was tentative, but it did exist and she hoped for it to stay that way. She lived too close to ever think she would survive an all out war between her clan and theirs - at least not without the aide of any allies willing to risk their own lives. She was convinced that those such people were likely few and far between.

She pulled one from the pile, turning it over in her hands and brushing her fingers along the fur. It was softer than she’d expected for a creature from the north, and Niylah was certain she’d traded far too much for it but knew that it’s worth would be seen by someone. If not, she would keep it for herself no matter what her father’s feelings on the matter. The winters weren’t entirely unkind to them, but they were cold enough to warrant the extra protection at times. Maybe she’d make a coat out of this one.

Niylah heard the footsteps only a moment before the door was nudged open, and her eyes shifted to take in the sight of this new arrival. She would have been lying if she said there wasn’t something immediately refreshing about the girl’s appearance into her formerly solitary space; the friendliness immediately radiating from her in waves brought the hint of a smile to Niylah’s face. When was the last time that the first words from a stranger were an introduction? It seemed to be rare in a place such as theirs.

”Thank you,” she said, setting the fur-covered skin aside as she made to straighten her tunic and stand up a little straighter. ”And welcome,” she continued after a beat, “I’m Niylah kom Trikru.” She glanced around the shop, a place that seemed far more humble to her own eyes, before adding, ”I would be more than glad to help you with whatever you need.”

It was too formal and she immediately felt foolish. She had spent too much time alone, and she found herself hoping very much that it would not always be the case.

tags: Callista || notes: <3


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Callista
 Posted: Jul 13 2017, 01:36 AM
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T
he smile that came from the shop owner, caused the smile on Callie's own lips to broaden. It was hit or miss sometimes on whether people would greet her with as much enthusiasm as she tended to greet them. Not everyone was so inherently chipper. Sometimes she felt like a bit of an oddity among her people. Sure, life was hard and there were plenty of things to be sad about, but she liked to focus on more positive things instead. Because if she let herself wallow in everything that she had lost she would drown, it was as simple as that. "Niylah" she repeated, committing the name and face to her memory. She was usually very good about remembering people. "It is a pleasure to meet you" she added, as she started browsing the stuff around her.

Her fingers brushed over a soft fur, it was dark in color, but she wasn't sure what animal it had come from for sure. "I'm not necessarily looking for anything specific. I just enjoy seeing new things. Things I haven't seen before" she explained, as she made her way to a different section of the shop. Threading gracefully around a table as she looked at the goods displayed there. She decided she would probably see what Niylah was willing to trade the pelt for. It would be good to replace the one that she used under her saddle. It was getting worn and it was time for a new one.

The brunette made her way back to the dark pelt and picked it up, bringing it up to the counter that Niylah was standing at. "I would like this" she replied with a smile. She opened her satchel and pulled out a few odds and ends. An arm band made of metal with an intricate design carved into it. A headstall for horses that she had made from the hide of a cow. A small blade that had been carved from the bone of a steer. A horn that had been hollowed out from a bull's horn. She glanced up at Niylah to see if any of the things might interest her. "If none of this interests you, I can offer other...services" she added. Not at all bashful to say the words. She wasn't a companion in the real sense of the word. She didn't often trade her body for goods. But sometimes she did. If the person struck her fancy.

She had a bracelet in her bag as well that had been braided intricately out of horse hair. But this she did not pull out. It was something that she preferred to simply give to someone that she felt might appreciate it. Not something that she wanted to trade away. It was like the bracelet that she wore on her own wrist, except that hers was made from her own stallion's hair. She had always had a little ritual. Whenever she completed the training on a horse, she took a small chunk of their tail and made a bracelet of it. Keeping some for herself. For friends in her clan. And giving some to those that she encountered on the road. People that particularly touched her in one manner or another. People she particularly enjoyed being around.


Niylah
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Niylah
 Posted: Oct 1 2017, 06:17 PM
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Niylah’s gaze traced Callista’s movement through the room with barely restrained interest. She could not, for the life of her, remember the last time she had seen anyone who moved with such fluidity as this woman; certainly none of the men who frequented their establishment were capable of such a feat. She blinked, turning her face away to break the spell she’d momentarily fallen under, and cleared her throat as she hastily shuffled a few things around behind the counter. It was a feeble attempt to look busy, or at the very least like she had been hanging on every motion the woman made, and she worried that it wouldn’t be enough to cover the truth.

Eyeing the pelt that Callista brought forth, Niylah let a brief smile flicker across her face. It was a good choice, probably one of the finer items that had been brought in recently, and she recalled helping her father skin the animal that it had once been a part of. It gave her a tiny glint of satisfaction to know that it would likely be used well. She reached out to brush her fingertips across the fur, letting the smile grow just a little as she asked, ”If I say that it’s one of our best does it sound as if I’m trying too hard?”

It was hard, also, not to be interested in each new item that was brought forth from the woman’s pack. Niylah’s eyes were immediately drawn to the intricately designed bracelet that was laid out first and she could almost feel her fingers itching to pick it up and turn it over in her hands. She wanted to admire every part of it and, probably, never set it down again but she knew that this couldn’t be the one that she traded the pelt for. She would covet the thing and keep it for herself and her father would not be pleased at all for the frivolity of the thing.

Niylah was so engrossed in studying the offerings that she nearly missed Callista’s soft remark. She sucked in a breath, feeling her cheeks burning as her eyes dropped to the counter in front of her and she mentally stumbled to find the appropriate words to respond. The other woman might not have specified what services she might offer, but Niylah wasn’t naive enough not to realize the meaning behind her comment.

Brushing her hair back behind her ear, Niylah replied haltingly, ”I think the knife will do just fine.”

tags: Callista || notes: <3
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Callista
 Posted: Oct 11 2017, 12:42 AM
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C
allista smiled once more when Niylah spoke. "I wouldn't say trying to hard, I would say being a good salesperson. It is easy to see that the pelt is of high quality, I would not expect you to undersell it" she replied warmly. Callie, being a clan leader's daughter, had never really wanted for anything. She had rather expensive taste most times but she was able to fund those tastes. It wasn't so much about the thing itself being expensive, just that she would only accept the best of something and was willing to pay the price for that. While haggling was sometimes needed, the brunette was usually a rather good customer and would usually pay what was asked as long as it was still fair.

The rider stood patiently as the woman inspected each item that she produced from her bag. Each one different in its own right and some slightly more valuable than the others. Value also very much came from perspective though. What was valuable to one person may not be to another. But she had a good feeling that someone that ran a trading post such as this would have a keen eye for what was considered wanted by the majority as opposed to the minority.

She didn't miss the scarlet blush that crossed Niylah's cheeks and it made her smile to herself. Callie had little shame and was not bashful very often, but she knew that not everyone was the same as she was. Not everyone was as comfortable with how open she tended to be. When the blonde chose the knife, Callista merely nodded "A very fine choice indeed" she responded. She picked up the weapon by the blade and offered it to Niylah by the handle. Once the trade was made she slid the other items back into her pack, resting a free hand on the pelt. "A good trade" she commented, satisfied with the business transaction that had just taken place.

After a moment of silent deliberation she looked back to Niylah. "You wouldn't happen to know of any lodging near here would you? I generally take my camp in the trees but it has felt like rain all day and I think I would like to find somewhere indoors to spend the night" she asked casually. She wasn't as familiar with the Trikru territories as she was with the territories that were closer to her own home. She hoped that someday all of the territories would be familiar and known to her. But that would take time and if she was being truthful with herself she knew that a day would come when she would no longer be able to travel at her every whim and fancy. A fact she refused to actually admit to herself because she didn't like to think of a time when her father might not be around anymore and she may be forced to rule her people. Because even though the idea of taking on that role terrified her, she refused to allow her horrid cousin to take up the role in her stead.


Niylah
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Niylah
 Posted: Oct 24 2017, 03:20 PM
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Niylah watched as Callista picked the blade up carefully, appreciating, once again, the graceful way in which the woman moved. Her own motions weren’t nearly as fluid as she reached a hand out to wrap her fingers around the handle, resting the side of the blade lightly on the open palm of her other hand as she further inspected the craftsmanship of the item. It would do whomever traded for it in the future well, of that much Niylah was certain.

Turning away from the counter for a moment, Niylah took a step towards a shelf that held some of the post’s more desirable items and placed the knife carefully atop a scrap of fur. In the dim glow of the store, the blade caught the flickering lantern light and reflected it gently back at her. The appearance of it brought a faint smile to Niylah’s face, and it hadn’t yet died as she turned back to face the woman on the other side of the counter.

The question caught her off-guard, if only because there were few people who had ever asked such a thing of her. One of the downfalls of both living and working at the trading post had always been the isolation, something that had slowly begun to wear on her as she’d gotten older and craved more than just the company her father and the occasional visitors provided. She’d wished that they were closer to a village, but none had formed anywhere near them and she was certain the proximity to Azgeda’s border had a great deal to do with the isolation she’d felt. The coalition had helped to calm much of the unrest in the area, but nothing would ever wipe it out completely, especially not while Nia was still queen.

Shaking her head, the smile slipped a little from Niylah’s face as she said, ”There is nothing nearby. Trikru doesn’t trust Azgeda to keep the peace between us, so few live this close to the border.” She glanced around the room as if it might offer her some appropriate answer for the woman’s plight. There was, in fact, an easy solution, but one that made Niylah nervous nonetheless. She knew so little of Callista that trusting the woman not to rob her, or worse, in the night was taking a huge leap of faith she wasn’t certain she was capable of. Still, she didn’t want to see someone, at least outwardly, seemed so kind suffer the cold.

”We have space here,” she said hesitantly, ”it isn’t much, but it’s dry.” Her father, if he returned home that evening, likely wouldn’t mind. If the rain did come, she suspected he would halt his travels at whatever location he’d arrived in earlier in the day and what was occurring at home would matter little anyway.

tags: Callista || notes: <3

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Callista
 Posted: Oct 26 2017, 01:06 AM
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allie watched as Niylah took the blade from her and placed it on a scrap of fur that adorned a shelf behind the counter at which the blonde was stationed. It seemed that each woman was rather interested in watching the other in one manner or another. It didn't bother the brunette in the slightest. She didn't mind being observed, not usually.

The answer didn't surprise Callie really. She had a feeling that not much would be near this area. Niylah was right, it was close to the Azgeda border and not many people got along all that well with the Ice Nation. Callie's own clan was not an ally of theirs. Too much wrong doing in the past during the wars, too many grudges. One of her brothers had been killed by Azgeda and that was something her father was not keen on letting go of. She simply nodded in understanding at Niylah's words. She didn't mind sleeping in the forest once again. If anything she could probably find a cave to shelter in for the night if the weather did as she predicted it would.

Callie picked up instantly on the hesitation in Niylah's voice as she offered to let Callie take refuge in the shop for the night. The girl understood the hesitation though and didn't take offense to it. This woman didn't know Callie, she had no way of knowing whether she was really a friend, or a foe. But similarly to Callie, Niylah seemed to have that desire for the company and was willing to take a chance in order to achieve that desire. Callie had done the same thing many a times during her travels. Staying with people she had only just met or inviting them to stay with her. Because even though there was a risk, the reward of interaction was almost always worth it. Being alone wasn't something that the Grounder reveled in. She liked people.

Even still, she didn't want to be an inconvenience and so she shook her head "Oh no, that's okay. I can manage on my own. I don't want to burden you" she smiled softly. Closing the flap on her bag after stowing away the items that had not been traded. Part of her did hope that the woman would insist, but she would also understand if she didn't. Not everyone could or wanted to take the risk on new people. The world wasn't always kind and Callie wasn't naive enough to not know that. That was part of why she was always so friendly to people. Because there was too much tension, too much hatred. Sometimes people just needed to be shown kindness to realize how good it could be.


Niylah
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Niylah
 Posted: Nov 24 2017, 06:45 PM
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Letting a small smile slip onto her face to hide her disappointment, Niylah nodded in kind as she watched Callista pack away her remaining items. It was silly to be disappointed, given the fact that she hadn’t been sure even while she was asking that she’d wanted the other woman to agree, but there was no denying that was the sensation that settled over her. As the seasons changed, she knew there would be fewer visitors than before and her isolation would grow deeper.

It was moments like those when she wished that moving to Polis was an option, but she knew she could never be happy there. She had grown up in the forest around her, with the grass and moss underneath her feet and the sounds of animals moving around her in the night, and she had no idea how she could ever adjust to being in such close quarters and in such drab grayness. It was an interesting place to visit, but she couldn’t think of it as anything more.

”It would be no burden, but I understand,” Niylah replied, shifting her weight from one side to the other as she moved to lean an elbow lightly on the counter. She could think of nothing else to do to occupy her time, at least not until the other woman took her leave. Afterwards, she supposed there would be cooking to be done and some tidying up before her father’s eventual return. It wasn’t the most exciting life she could have been living, but it was a steady one. She had come to appreciate that a great deal over the years.

”Where will you go next?” she asked curiously, wondering at the places that this other woman had seen - likely places that Niylah’s own eye would never take in. Maybe someday her father would decide he no longer wanted to travel and it would fall on Niylah to explore their world, seeking out new items to offer in their little post, but until then she would live vicariously over those who did visit her there.

tags: Callista || notes: sorry this is so short

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