S4E6-ErysEdric

Erys Moongem

Erys exited Ona's room and steeled herself. It was going to be a fight. She wasn't going to involve anyone else. Maybe she'd even misunderstood the situation. She wasn't going to refuse to learn from the evening's prior example and rush headlong into a battle without giving the guilty party a chance to defend himself. That affirmed, she knocked thrice on his door.

Edric Crestrun

The response came slowly, as Edric dragged himself to the door. His mind spun with failure. He couldn't concentrate on anything but his own mistakes anymore, and his mind had gone to far more drastic places. He'd deal with whoever needed him now, get some sleep, and head out before the sun rose. No one would know he left until it was too late to stop him. He'd end this himself. Opening the door, he looked like he'd been through a rough year, not a day. "…'ey Erys."

Erys Moongem

Once again, a firm hand on his chest and a quick closing of his door after shoving him deeper into his room brought them face to face in a confrontation. "Hey. You kissed Dagger. After the day she's had. After the things she's been through. Explain yourself."

Edric Crestrun

Edric didn't resist, as if he'd lost the will to fight back. His eyes moved up from the floor to his 'attacker', and he sighed. "I fucked up. That's all there is to it, alright? I was…I dunno, amazed. She's amazin', Erys. You don't know what she just did in here. I got lost in the glow and thought I had somethin', but no, I just fucked it all up again."

Erys Moongem

Erys softened. "I know she is. I've called her Dagger just a few days now, but she…" Erys looked to the side, thinking about how badly she herself had wanted to kiss the girl. Remembering the thrill she felt at just her touch after DAYS without. "She saved Onys at the cavemouth, remember? Just… dove into danger and took care of business. Saw her do the same thing with the redbrands, though she paid for it with her injuries. It's a rare woman that can impress so quickly." She was almost commiserating with him, but she made firm eye contact. "But love doesn't intrude on a woman who's recovering from an abuser, lover, stepfather, whatever the fuck he believes he is to her. She needs time. To heal."

Edric Crestrun

His inner fire dead at this emotional assault, he looked her in the eyes weakly. "I…I know. I never should have done something like that to her. I'm…I'm gonna make it up to everyone. You, Onys, Quin, everyone. I'm gonna…gonna make it right." His expression looked desperate. He was willing to do anything to fix what he had broken at this point. "I don't know what I'm doing here, Erys. I don't think I'm cut out to be with anyone. Ever."

Erys Moongem

One of Erys' eyebrows rise at his confession, and she makes a face of displeasure. "And what is it you're planning to do, exactly, to make it up to all of us? You have some spell or something I haven't seen yet?"

Edric Crestrun

"I'm leaving, and I'm going to take care of something I should have done in the first place." He didn't see a need to lie, she wasn't going to stop him. He didn't owe them anything in truth, and they had no hold over him, right? It was time for him to do the right thing. "If I don't come back, then I'm probably dead, but at least I won't be your problem anymore."

Erys Moongem

Anger once again flared in her eyes, shocked beyond belief. "So now, let me get this straight, you honestly believe that walking away from us, abandoning us, is somehow going to make things right? What? What is it that you're going to take care of?" Incredulous, flabbergasted, taken aback, Erys can't help but start moving nervously around his room as she berates him.

Edric Crestrun

Her words only strengthened his resolve, as he felt every verbal blow and added it to his own mountain of pathetic self-pity. "I'm going to do the damn job we should have done already. Then we ain't got a reason to be together, and I can't inflict myself on any of ya again. Quin doesn't need me anywhere near her anymore, and I care about her too much to hurt her again."

Erys Moongem

Erys grabbed him by the arms and shook him fiercely. "You idiot, you've sunk so low in your self-obsessed cycle of loathing that now you've got yourself thinking that abandoning the woman you just initiated intimate contact with is somehow going to save her from you? What if she develops feelings for you? Whether you earned them or not. What if she considers you a friend, and could just as easily forgive you tomorrow?" She shook him again, tears welling up in her eyes. She cried often for a noble, sure, but this was getting ridiculous. "What about the rest of us who have come to care for you? Not only would you get killed in mere minutes by what are undoubtedly forces stronger than anything I've ever seen, you would put Roxie's life in danger by alerting them that there would be rescue attempts. And we're much more likely to succeed with you beside us, working with us… connected with us…" Her face hardened, staring at him, looking for any sign she was getting through to him.

Edric Crestrun

Something about the actual, physical sensation of her shaking him seemed to break his continuously building self-hatred, if only for a moment, and tears welled in his own eyes. "I…I can't deal with it Erys. I can't deal with being such a failure. Every time I screw something up, I just see their faces looking down at me. Mocking me. Judging me from on high as the scum they said I was." Memories of his early years filled his mind, of trying so hard to succeed and still finding himself under their heels, figuratively and literally. Then something darker emerged. "…I see my father, knowing why he abandoned us. Knowing I was going to be nothing but a fuckup. Erys, I don't know what to do anymore!"

Erys Moongem

Erys listened intently, and then softly, gently, interceded. "Sune has taught me a great many things over the years, Edric. And here's one of the most important ones." She lets go of his arms, breaking the contact but staring him in the face, even as a stray tear continues to stream down her face like a spring dewdrop. "We aren't complete. We're fragments. And when we strike out on our own, the vast majority of us don't have what it takes. Can you imagine where I'd be without my sister? Dead. A whore, at best, and don't get me wrong, a damn good one. But aimless otherwise, and useless to her as a servant. What of Valorn, without his beloved Bavina? Has he told you of his wife's passing? Have you seen the dwarf's tears, Edric? We were brought together for a reason. Synergy. Our whole," she says, reaching for one of his hands, to demonstrate the token gesture, "is greater than the sum of our parts."

Edric Crestrun

As she let him go, he wiped the tears away with his sleeve as if he was trying to hide their existence, as he listened to her talk, nodding as she talked about Bavina. His hand reached out for hers, holding it lightly. He felt defeated, but for a moment, he could sense some kind of light in her words that guided the way out of the hole he had dug himself into. "I…I don't know where I fit. Quinys is going to be a better mage than me by far, soon. I don't want to hurt any of you again. I…I really think I like this, no, I love this. I love being a part of somethin' that's actually changing things in the world, instead of sitting on a boat or sequestered in some high tower." He looked into her eyes, trying to make sense of it all. "I thought…I thought if I could rescue Gundren, or die trying, I'd accomplish some foolish goal and it would just, fix things. It wouldn't hurt as much for me. I wasn't thinkin' about how you would feel, any of you."

Erys Moongem

"I'll bet Dagger will be better than you. At what she does. If that's magic, amazing. Close your eyes, honey." She did so, too. "Just imagine the two of you tossing spells, light surrounding the two of you, working together in perfect harmony because instead of disregarding her feelings by leaving, you choose, here, now, to dedicate yourself to finding where you do fit." She swallowed, squeezing his hand, feeling a light trace of blush spread over her face as she imagined the two of them together. "You have a choice, of course. Two possible futures. Maybe more. Which looks better? Dead in a goblin's den, still thinking there's something wrong with being a whoreson? Or with us – Dagger, me, my sister, Valorn, even the druid, my Goddess, have you seen what she's capable of? We all have our talents, sweetheart."

Edric Crestrun

As he closed his eyes, something else happened entirely. He could hear her go on about their future, and it filled him with a strange pride, but he also glimpsed something else entirely. A piece of the future. A blurred, broken image, but he could piece it all together. They stood above a field of battle. They were surrounded by flames. An ice storm raged around them. Lightning filled their souls and hearts. They were heroes. It was all too much at once, but as he opened his eyes, he was…smiling. It was all true. It was all going to be true. If they were together, they could survive it all. "You're right…you're right! I can see it all, Erys! I saw it all, just for a brief and beautiful moment…we were glorious. We were triumphant." His hands gripped hers firmly, his face only inches away from hers as he drew close in a state of euphoria. "I believe you, Erys, and you should believe me, right now, that we're going to do great things." What those things were, he had no clue, but right now his mind swam with possibilities.

Erys Moongem

She pulled his hands to her lips as she let the tears of relief go, not entirely believing his silly little vision – wizards, right? – but accepting that it had at least brought him back from the brink. "We are. Together." She looked into his eyes and saw what she'd seen the day they met – that bizarre, unique, brilliant, masterful spellcaster. Not a bookworm. A rugged adventurer. She felt again the crushing need, but he'd turned her down, twice. A third request in such a short time was risky. But she remembered too, the arguments with her sister, the trouble with Quin. He wasn't focused. He wasn't truly what he needed to be. And neither was she. Oathday on the morrow. For a moment, her eyes looked downcast, then closed. She pressed her lips to his hands and then let go, breaking contact again.

Edric Crestrun

He seemed to still be caught in his most recent portent and it's implications, as he felt her lips on his hands and he smiled at her. "I…I guess I owe ya twice now, Erys. Thank you. I'm gonna…try to be better. Try to be the me that exists in that future, with all of you at my side." He sighed, thinking for a moment about Quin, and what had happened before. "Do you…really think she'll be able to trust me like that? After…what happened? I don't know if I'd trust me if I were in her shoes, and she's got enough trouble trustin' anyone already."

Erys Moongem

Erys shrugged her shoulders a little, working the tone back to friendlier realms. "You earn a woman like Dagger's trust simple, easily. You be a friend to her when she needs you. You respect her boundaries. You recognize that they are there in the first place. That can be difficult when you're not… used to it. Like many of the things we're all working on, it's a learned skill. Right? But so long as you're teaching her magic… it would be very foolish of you to act on your feelings. To try to kiss her again. Adonis used that connection to abuse her. You could be the best lover in the world and still hurt her immensely. Even I would."

Edric Crestrun

"Yeah…like I said, I ain't got much experience at this stuff. That was probably only my, uh….third or fourth kiss. Went about as well as this one did." He felt a bit raw at this whole deal, and realized he made the same mistakes with romance that he had made with magic as an apprentice. Foolish mistakes, but ones he learned from. "If uh…you were still interested in teachin' me more about that kind of stuff, I'd…well shit, I guess I'd owe ya thrice fold."

Erys Moongem

Erys' eyes lit up like lanterns, and her sharp intake of breath revealed her excitement. She scanned his face. No sign of a cruel joke, but her desperation might be blinding her. No sign of a lack of anything but earnestness. Maybe he meant to make an apology of sorts to her, but he wouldn't be so foolish. Maybe he honestly felt his soul crying for Sune, and she was the obvious vessel. "That.. that would be… wonderful… and a really big help to me, actually, Edric. Especially if you were comfortable… helping me swear my oath to Sune as we got started. It really ought to be made with a partner, and I've… I've kinda been drawing nothing but twos lately." She swallowed, closed her eyes, composed herself. "Do you find me beautiful, Edric?"

Edric Crestrun

Admittedly, the whole thing felt a little…strange to him, but he meant what he had said entirely. If he was going to ever get anywhere, with anyone, he needed to start somewhere that was comfortable, with someone patient, someone with far more knowledge in the subject than anyone he had ever met. "I've thought you were beautiful since the first time I saw ya, Erys, that ain't ever been in any doubt. I'd be honored to help you with yer oath, it's the least I could do, y'know? Ya might have saved my life tonight."

Erys Moongem

She nodded, knowing she had indeed. "I'll speak to Her, at first… don't be alarmed by anything I say. I've been practicing the words for years. This is… incredibly important to me, and very intimate between us. Don't be surprised if you feel something for me in the coming days. We can talk about it, alright? No strings, no pressure, no need to worry about a thing. You're helping a Paladin of Sune take her Oath and give herself to Her. So don't interrupt. But once the Oath is complete, and you'll know it is, because I'll say Her common name, Lady Firehair… Everything I say after that is between us, and you can feel free to respond."

Edric Crestrun

Edric listened intently as she spoke, the moment recalling days at the academy, where a wrong word could spell doom or destruction for one wrapped deeply in the Weave. He simply nodded, and took her hand in his own again. This was…different. Much like everything had been since he had joined up with these strangers, a number of who he could now call friends.

Erys Moongem

She held his hand and squeezed, smiling up at him, pulling him to her and kissing him, neither the timid kiss of a child at play nor that of a passionate climax, but one with all the recognition of the beauty she saw in him. It felt amazing to finally taste another person, another beauty, another unique individual… but she didn't want to get distracted. Tonight, it wasn't just about sex. Even more so than usual. She broke their first kiss holding his eye contact for a moment. She smiled reassuringly, and reached for the belt still holding the dagger she'd thought she might thrust into his heart this evening. The best laid plans, she supposed. "My Truelove, my Goddess, my highest, my truest, my love above all loves." She pulled on the belt, letting it slide down her legs until it came to a stop against the ground. "I swear to you, this night, with this lover in my arms," She embraced him, holding him tightly, pulling away far enough only to kiss him again. "The Oath of the Heartwarder." She pulled away from him, still looking into his eyes with all the love in her heart for her Goddess. "I swear to spread love, to kindle the light of love in the world, to beat back ugliness and despair." She pulled at his belt, loosening his robe. "To always believe in romance, as true love wins over all. Where romance cannot, or should not blossom, I will spread and honor friendship and admiration in your name." With his robe loosened, she took a step back and again focused on her own clothes, turning and motioning for him to untie her. "I swear to shelter love, to stand against the wickedness that would swallow it. Where there is beauty and good, there is love. Where love flourishes, I will stand against the forces that would snuff it out." Her dress slides away, revealing the barest possible undergarments an elf could get away with – naturally. She turns to face him again. "I will not hide away, but always seek to move those around me to love," she runs her hands against his chest, up over his shoulders, pulling away his robe and letting it drop to the ground. "and desire." She smirks, taking a step back to admire the view. It had been days. She felt herself already ready to pounce on him, but she wasn't finished yet. "I swear to pursue my own love, to delight in its pursuit, and in song, and beauty, and art. If I were ever to allow the quest for love to die in my heart," she reached for his hand now, guiding him to the bed she realized she'd technically paid for. Neither the time nor lover to make that particular joke, but Mina would have laughed. "I would not be able to spread it to the world." Seated on the edge of the bed, she again brought his face to hers and kissed him, again and again, each time with a deepening intensity. "I swear…" she continued, her breath quickening, "to stand as a beacon for all without love. To let the light of Your love shine through me in all my deeds. To love none more than myself," she once again uses a single hand to push him, only this time, downward, "save You, my Truelove, my Goddess, my highest, my love above all loves. I swear to lose myself in my love of You, my Lady Firehair." She closes her eyes, inhales, exhales, and once again felt the breath of Sune just barely along the back of her neck. Just the lightest touch of the Goddess in response to her most sincere prayer. The passion hit her like a wave. "Edric," she whispered, breathlessly, "get the fucking lights."

Edric Crestrun

Swept up in the passion of her speech, and the intensity of her purpose, Edric moved his hand away from her only long enough to extinguish every light in the room with a simple gesture, the darkness falling upon the two of them, even cast as they were in Sune's brilliant light. "D-Done…"

Erys Moongem

The lights went out, and suddenly Erys feels Sune's presence around him, and a translucent figure of Lady Firehair herself surrounding him. She feels a peace like none other she has ever felt in her life. The figure reaches out a hand and gently strokes Erys' cheek, and she hears a voice in her head. "Erys, my child, do you promise to always spread, shelter, and pursue love every day, and never run from its warm embrace?" Erys' voice quakes as she takes a sharp, ragged breath, as much as in shock as in delight. "I do." Erys instantly feels a sense of great purpose, and knows that she has indeed pleased Sune this night. "Then stand as a beacon for all who live without love. Let the light of your love shine forth in all your deeds. Love none more than yourself, and lose yourself in my love. Rise from this night as my Paladin, my conduit for this world, and be at peace, my love." As the figure fades, Erys kisses Edric with an gentle intensity, pushing him forward into their night together.

Edric Crestrun
And that was it for him, as he found himself rapt in the first night of passion of his short life, going in with an intent to learn as much as he could, but leaving it with a far greater sense of the world itself.

S4E6-ErysEdric

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