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An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri)

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51 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Sun Sep 16, 2018 10:23 pm

Glen's frown deepens. He's silent for a long time. "I want to say, 'no, we can't ask him to do that, that's wrong.' I want him to not have to be part of this." He sighs. "But it's his life, and he should be able to decide. I don't want him to feel like we're pressuring him, though. He cares a lot - I don't know if he'll be able to say no if we ask. Knowing that, is it right to ask him? I don't know. I'm worried. And I'm trying to just put it all out there, because I trust you three and because I don't want any misunderstandings." He smiles somewhat grimly at each of them.
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52 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Sun Sep 16, 2018 10:30 pm

Luther takes a deep breath, torn between caution and longing for a lead to Gwynnestri. "If Mokoz knows anything worth telling," he warns. "And if her suspicions aren't aroused by Thorn coming back after hiding from the Redfangs for a year."
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53 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Sun Sep 16, 2018 10:35 pm

Glen's grim visage becomes still more grim. "And if she doesn't try to charm him with magic into staying. And if she doesn't take him back by force if that doesn't work. And if, and if, and if." He shakes his head, worried. "It's so dangerous."

As if sensing his ranger's trepidation, Elen comes padding into the room, having been napping elsewhere. He climbs up onto the couch and into Glen's lap, which Glen obliges. "Oh, Luther, this is Elen. A friend from the slums. Long story. Elen, Luther." He has explained it so many times now that it's old hat and feels quite mundane. He pets the baby, glad for the soft and silky feel of his fur under Glen's nervous hands and the comforting weight on his legs. Elen briefly considers the commissioner, then puts his head down on Glen.
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54 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Sun Sep 16, 2018 11:04 pm

"Thorn knows her better than any of us," Sunrise says with a frown. "He might have a better idea of whether she would tell him anything, whether she would try to force him to stay, all of it. And if he does decide to talk to her, he wouldn't have to do it alone."
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55 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Sun Sep 16, 2018 11:08 pm

Glen nods, but says nothing for the moment, letting Elen's rumbly little purrs help him quiet his emotions and think on everything they've learned and everything they're considering.
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56 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:17 pm

Luther's eyes raise in surprise at the appearance of the big cat, but he merely nods and extends his hand for the cat to sniff and remember. "Well, I suppose it doesn't hurt to ask Thorn what he thinks, you're right," he agrees with Sunrise. "Though I... have concerns. Still, anything that could help recover Gwyn is worth discussing."
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57 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:25 pm

Elen sniffs Luther's hand eagerly and rubs it gently with his cheek. "He's friendly - he'll gladly come over if you want to say hello." Changing the subject, Glen adds, "Were your concerns different than those we've already discussed? If you don't mind discussing them, of course."
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58 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Mon Sep 17, 2018 10:08 pm

Luther sighs and shakes his head. "Everything you've uncovered is important to know," he says, giving Glen a regretful look, "so please do not take my disappointment to mean you have failed in any way. Even beyond the crucial personal knowledge this represents for Thorn, it is surely important to have now verified that the Redfangs have a powerful caster on their side. That makes it all the more reasonable, to me, that they would try to capture Laerdya. So we... we may not have a complete view of the picture yet, but pieces are coming together."

His lips turn up in a rueful smile. "But, yes, it would have been nice if Immeral's mind had a map to Gwyn for Sunrise to steal while she sang."
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59 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Mon Sep 17, 2018 10:24 pm

"Oh, of course. That would be very convenient." He matches the commissioner's smile. "But, we're working other avenues to find out where she is, do not worry about that for the moment. Actually, I was asking - you seemed to have concerns specifically about what we were just discussing. Thorn talking to Mokoz. It still feels cruel and makes my stomach turn to think about asking him. Would you mind sharing your concerns about that?" Glen tries to look understanding and adds, "I understand these are delicate and personal matters that may not be my business, so feel free to say so and we can leave it there."
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60 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Mon Sep 17, 2018 11:33 pm

"Oh! Ah." Luther hesitates again, choosing his words carefully. "I'm very fond of Thorn and respect him very much. But he is... not the best liar I have ever met, and I think we have to assume Mokoz can read minds at least as well as our dear Sunrise. And he only just escaped them after hiding for over a year. I share your concern about cruelty."
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61 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:45 pm

Sunrise frowns delicately. "Are... are we sure he'd have to lie?" She tilts her head. "From his description of her, Mokoz does feel maternal and affectionate towards him, despite her... questionable choices. If he met with her somewhere safe, revealed that he knows she's his mother and also about Gwyn, and asked her as her child to help him find the girl... are we sure she wouldn't say yes?" With a grimace she adds, "And given her history, I don't think she would need all that much of a push to come down on the side of not leaving a young woman in the hands of brutal men, especially when we don't know for sure whether she chose to go with them or not."
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62 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:58 pm

Glen pauses a moment. "That's an intriguing idea." He considers, then looks worried. "It's still an enormous risk. She's in Arnem's inner circle and her loyalty might run much deeper than we think. If she doesn't agree to help him, she might be just as inclined to take him back or kill him for betraying the family. We would be betting a great deal on a person we don't really know much about."
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63 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Wed Sep 19, 2018 4:23 pm

"That's why I recommend talking to Thorn," she says calmly, "because he does know her. Speaking of..." She frowns. "He's been gone a while. Glen, do you think you ought to check on him? This has been... a lot."
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64 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Wed Sep 19, 2018 4:37 pm

Glen nods, concerned as well with how long Thorn has been gone. As he rises, Elen hops down and goes over to sit by Sunrise's feet, sniffing and hoping for some pets.

Glen, meanwhile, crosses to the door through which Thorn left a few moments before, and heads towards what he believes is the nearest washroom. If he does not see anyone in the hallway, he calls softly, "Thorn?" He listens carefully for the direction of any response.
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65 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 4:46 pm

From the sound of the restroom, he can hear quiet crying.
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66 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 4:56 pm

Glen walks over to the door and gets quite close to it. He lowers his voice and speaks softly, but in a voice he believes should be loud enough for Thorn to hear over the crying. "Thorn? Are you alright?" He hesitates - clearly he's not alright, what a foolish question. "Can I-- I mean, would it be helpful--" He takes a breath. "Want some company?"
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67 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:39 pm

Back in the parlor Sunrise sits back with a sigh, turning her head to regard Luther with tired, wry eyes. "I really wasn't kidding about offering a robe," she says, smiling. "I shudder to think what would happen to the city if you fell sick."
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68 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 6:24 pm

Thorn opens the door, looking abashed. His eyes are red from crying and he keeps his gaze downcast, aware of how deeply embarrassing this situation is. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to disappear for so long."

Luther is lost in his own thoughts, but Sunrise's wry smile draws him back out and his lips curl slightly in response. "Such a tragedy that would be," he says quietly, but there's a sliver of old sorrow in his voice. "But since you are so determined to keep me alive, I acquiesce to your better sense."
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69 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 7:15 pm

"Hey." Glen's voice is quiet and kind, with a very gentle hint of chiding. "Thorn, you don't owe anyone an apology. This is so much to take, and so soon after you've returned from a year in hiding, in a tougher situation than any of us could likely bear." He reaches up and puts a reassuring hand softly on the young man's shoulder. "Are you okay to head back out? I can sit with you for a minute if that would help. Or, I can go and you can take a minute to yourself. Whatever you need."
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70 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 7:49 pm

She chuckles. Taking his hand, she pulls him to his feet and leads him back - not to her bedroom, but into the suite of rooms she calls hers.

"There's a changing screen over there," she says, handing him a robe. It is, as advertised, dry and soft and fluffy, and not as pink as she'd implied; more a soft peach color. "I won't peek."
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71 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:30 pm

Thorn's gaze is soft as he studies the floor. "I... I know. I know lots of people would have trouble with a revelation like this. I just." He takes a shuddering breath and blinks back more tears. "I didn't... have a happy childhood? But I tried to believe that my parents were doing their best for me. Like. Father didn't love me, but he claimed me as his own even though I was my mother's shame. Mother was distant and faraway sometimes, but I tried to believe that whatever good she saw in my biological father, maybe she saw in me."

"Now I find out all that was... a lie I made for myself. I was forced onto Mother, after Father forced me onto another woman. They raised me as penance to hand me over to a family of orcs, to be used for their political ambitions. It's a lot to take in."

---

Luther can't help but chuckle as he moves behind the screen. "Why, when you've already seen everything worth showing," he jokes easily.
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72 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:33 pm

She laughs freely at this. "Oh believe me, when I walked into that room I covered my eyes pretty quick," she teases.
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73 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:38 pm

She can't see his face, but the silence while he changes is confused in nature.
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74 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:40 pm

If she notices the silence she doesn't comment. "Hand out your wet clothes? We'll dry them out before you leave."
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75 Re: An Apt Apertif (Glen, Sunrise, Ka'Ri) on Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:59 pm

Glen nods slowly, blinking quickly and suddenly gratefully that the young man's eyes are on the floor, as tears prick at the edges of his own eyes. He doesn't know what to say - there don't seem to be better words than 'I'm sorry' and those don't feel like enough. Without really thinking, he brings up his other hand and puts it on Thorn's other shoulder. He pulls Thorn forward very gently, inviting him in for a hug, if it will help, but if he feels the slightest hesitation, Glen will stop and not pull him in any further.
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