Monday, February 27, 2012

It seemed to Star that it was morning in Faerie, the sun light soft and golden on the plants and trees. Mera and Ru were wide eyed at everything, the different light and colors, and the small troop of demifae that started to follow them. Keon reassured Erik that he expected that and that by the time they reached the grove there would be more, and possibly races other than the demifae. Every time Star looked back there seemed to be more. And once she started paying attention to the forest alongside the trail they were on it seemed as if the plants and brush were moving along with the horses. Watching closely for gaps in the vegetation proved there were numerous tiny wood fae and creatures following that way, their modes of transportation using leaves and nut shells brings a smile to Stars face.

After some time, the group pauses in a small clearing with a quiet stream running through it. Star smiles, “It's so beautiful here...” The leaves are a strange combinations of the palest green and turquoise and shimmer with gold highlights in the sun.

“A good place for a break.” Inari returns the smile, enjoying the look of wonder on Stars face.

Star stumbles when she gets off her horse, “Oh... my legs....” Erik grabs her as she steadies herself. Star takes Ru from Wish who stays close, taking her role as Ru's guardian for this trip very seriously. Mera slips a hand into Star's free one, smiling at her Da as he leads the horses to water for a drink.

Ru is happy as can be, trying to talk to any demifae that flit close, eyes wide with curiosity.

“Mama!” and he points to the edge of the trees where in the shadows of the plants fairy lights can faintly be seen.

As Star watches she sees two tall dark forms step away from the trees. She gasps and looks around. Inari moves next to her, head bent and whispers, “They have been following us for awhile now. I doubt they mean any harm. They look young and their weapons are sheathed and are not those of full fledged warriors. If they had been warriors I don't think they would have gotten this close, not with the escort we seem to be attracting.”

Suddenly Inaris voice rings out, authoritative and demanding.

“Show yourselves! Or I will drag you out in the open.”

Wish and Pike move in even closer to the children, Raina and Ky right behind them, swords ready. Star holds her breath and senses all the creatures and fae following do the same. A sudden hush comes on the entire group.

Two young Drow step from behind a large gnarled tree. Their skin a bit lighter than what Star had seen on most in Underdark or it could have been just the light. But they didnt look very threatening to her. Empty handed, hands loosely at their sides. Star reaches out and lays a hand on Eriks arm, a silent cautioning to do nothing rash.

Inari asks, “Why are you following? You are a bit far from home...”

The taller of the pair nods. “We wanted to see her...” and he lifts a hand to point at Star. “Our legends speak of one who has the mark of Bal-Char and has survived. We mean her no harm, nor any of you.”

Right then Ru gave out a squawk, a small demifae having dropped an acorn on his head. He laughs and tries to grab the little fairy who starts to chatter and flits out of his reach. As Star shifts Ru from one hip to the other, her cloak falls to one side, exposing one of her arms.

The two Drow gasp, “She is the one....” they exchange a startled look and melt into the forest as if they had never been there.

“Should we go after them?” asks Ky, itching for a fight.

Inari shakes her head. “No. It would just slow us down and we dont have far to go. I dont think they are going to come back, they seemed in awe of Star and the marks on her arm. I know little of their legends or prophecy, but if they wanted to attack us they would have, not that they would have got very far with that...” Inari grins and her look takes in the entire group. “And they looked pretty young. Lets continue on. We should be at the Grove in a couple more hours...”

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