July 15, 2018 at 9:59 pm #30007
It was the end of the evening and still sat at the bar. The maiden had drank more than she had since arriving in the strange lands of Hellifyno, and Harry- the worker at the Blue Moon had stood back and watched her, unwilling to intervene in any way other than service her requests. And she requested one ale after another. She appeared as someone who didn’t want to be bothered by any other person or their problems.
She had spent an unsuccessful day looking for work, being laughed out of job sites and catcalled regarding the sort of work some men thought she should be doing. There were half a dozen different occasions when she could have quite happily sank her axe into someones skull through their abject disrespect to a stranger in this land, but as someone she had met in the street explained with a shrug and a smile “This is Consequence.”
Disappointed and mildly bitter about it, she had spent the evening getting quietly drunk- unwilling to engage with anyone beyond a nod and a grunt and displaying the demeanor that one should really just let her get on with it. Kamen and Tyler had left her a little irked. One by judgments. The other by the sort of unadulterated cheerful optimism that would automatically annoy someone that had a dark cloud hovering over their head. When the shield maiden finally slid from bar stool, she moved with the slow and deliberate motion of someone who was really very inebriated and trying hard to give the impression she was not.
Oh she was regretting now not having a meal. Harry had offered of course, but she wasn’t one to spoil a decent buzz by eating. She bends to retrieve the shield that was always with her. Quartered green and black and made of wood and bronze embossed, she needed to stead herself with a hand upon the counter as she appeared to lean too acutely.
Harry was watching all of this with a dubious expression and suggested she get her head down under a table. With a raised hand she dismisses this idea
“I’m fine” she slurs with a neutral expression, a protest at her capability of finding a bed for the night earned a more strident repeat “I said I’m fine!” with the stubborn tone of one who wishes no help from anyone.
Hauling the shield upon her shoulder by it’s thick leather strap, it seems to have doubled in weight in the time she had spent in the Blue Moon. A groan as she adjusts it and then she strides towards the door with purpose, listing horribly as she does, stopping to readjust her progress and then was gone from the tavern. Harry watches her go and just shakes his head.
When she grinds to a halt a few dozen paces down the street and leans against a wall, she looks up at the night sky. At the unfamiliar constellations that spangle the sky like silver on black velvet. The streets of Consequence were wet with a recent downpour and silent and SIGRÍÐR takes in a lungful of air in an attempt to clear her grog addled brain and wonders what in Odin’s beard is she going to do next.
Hellifyno had thrown her about the world, taking her to Spout, to persistence, to the Northern forests where the wolves bayed at night, to the strange world of Paracosm where games seemed to be the focus of that crystalline land and of course- here- to Consequence.
But this child of an 8th century Earth could find satisfaction nowhere. She had just missed out on war that could have earned her some coin and war being so unpopular , no one required the services of a mercenary, and especially not one that appeared naught but a stripling of a farm girl in stature. An offer by someone called Aero, but she hadn’t seen him since to take him up on it.
With no way to get home, and no work, life was looking pretty miserable for the shield maiden. She would pray but she didn’t think her Gods could hear her.
Hellifyno had heard her, and demonstrating that it would sometimes give insightful aid to those that required it, there was a blinding ultraviolet flash and she disappeared from the city, leaving nothing but the pop of air rushing in to fill a vacuum.
To deposit her upon some open moor. It was night. There was gentle drizzle of rain that soon coated her clothing with a fine mist as though she had walked through a cloud. The rich, damp earth smelled clean and familiar as did the scent of wet heather.
SIGRÍÐR swayed for a moment, dropped the shield, leaned over and promptly deposited the evening’s ale between her boots.
When the retching had subsided and all that could be heard in the silence was a distant hoot of an owl and the pathetic groaning of one who was coming to the end of that rather ignominious process, SIGRÍÐR stood up, swaying a little less. Certainly the griping of her guts was over and she wiped wet lips with the sleeve of her tunic before picking up her shield and shuffling towards the light through the springy heather.
As she got closer, she could see the profile of an enormous building. A long and low rooved hall that was not too dissimilar from that created by her ancestors. SIGRÍÐR had thrown up everything but her dreams and was sobering up quite unpleasantly and feeling seedy.
There was trough outside that hall, filled with water, no doubt for the animals- horses and the like, but she drops to her knees on the wet ground and sinks her head into it up to the shoulders in an effort to awaken.
It is icy cold and seems to do the trick and as she sweeps her head back from the trough, soaked, water flings in an arc from her straggling braids and soaking into the leather of her jerkin, a clearer eye would show her the mettle of this place.
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