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  1. littletto_


    You’ve just arrived in a swampy, dim town. As you look around, your gaze is met with shacks and cabins. It smells of rotted wood and wet moss. You duck and step into a tattered tent, illuminated by a series of candles suspended in the air. At the back of the tent, an old hag raises her head, “What brings you to this dingy town? she begins, then pauses to study your face—”Ah, it’s you. I’ve been expecting you. Sit,” she gestures at a cushion, “Tell me your story.” ((How do you respond?)) With the twinkle of candlelight in her eyes and the fetid smell of bog and decay filling her senses, Marietta takes a moment to register the old woman's words. Her gaze drops slowly, brows knitting in confusion. “Me? How would you know who - ” She pauses, shaking her head as if shaking off a stupor. She can tell questions will do her no good, this strange encounter will finish out whether she wants it to or not. She sinks to the cushion on the ground awkwardly, digging one hand into the dirt of the earth as if to calm herself. Fingers dancing on the blade of her dagger, hanging accessibly off her belt, she takes a deep, grounding breath. “My name is Marietta Darith, Rhett to those who know me dearly,” Her eyes rake up and down the old woman’s form, “But something tells me you knew that already.” “I am a wanderer…well, ranger, to some.” Her eyes wander up to the candles floating above, placing her hands flat on the table in front of her. Her bangles clank softly against the wood. “I’ve been on the road for what must be years now.” Though her face remains neutral, there’s a tinge of something bitter in her voice. “My story is a common one, so I’m not sure what to tell.” “I’m a half-elf, the result of an exciting, illicit tryst between a Highlander and a Wood Elf.” Her gaze drops back to the elderly woman, something venomous in it, sarcasm dripping off her words. “I beg you not to ask me to claim that which is Elven in me. I never knew my Elven mother. Seems the call of the wild was simply too strong.” A quirked eyebrow and a steely gaze are all that needs to be said for years of resentment that has built up, bubbling in her stomach. “My father is a farmer, on the outskirts of Haense, though he claims our bloodline runs through the Kaedrini. I’ve certainly never seen heads or tails of proof of it.” She snorts but smiles softly at memories of home. “That is where I grew up as a babe. It was just the two of us out there. After my mother left, all he could strive to do was survive. But we lived on the edge of this expansive, ancient forest and I spent all my youth in it while my father worked the fields. Regretful as I am of my mother, she did leave me her affinity for the forest and its complexities.” She clears her throat, tracing a finger along the wood grain. Something about the elderly woman’s penetrating gaze leaves her feeling unsteady. “I sometimes say I was raised by the forest, though not to discount my father. I learned the forest, though. What was in it, what changes meant. I learned it like I knew myself and there was always something new to satiate my curiosity.” It’s hard not to see the influence of the forest where she was raised on the young woman, now, dressed in greens and browns, looking like perhaps part of her turned flora while in its depths. “When I grew old enough, I set out on the road looking for…something. Something more fulfilling than our farm.” She went quiet for a second, then her gaze snapped up, sharp and warning. “I am not looking for my mother.” Marietta bristled, the accusation unspoken but in her mind already suggested. “I take myself from town to town, taking odd jobs here and there. I’ve a decent enough knowledge of herbology and I wager I’m a well enough tracker or guide. I’ve even begun working on a field guide and my travel aides with that.” Her hand pats a leather lump at on her right thigh, presumably the safe-guarded location of her writings. She hesitated, pressing her lips into a thin line. Glancing behind her, out in the murky night, she felt deeply as though she was being watched, a feeling she was familiar with in the late nights in the forest. Marietta sighed, shoulders sinking. “I am looking for a place to call my own. To establish myself.” She affirmed finally. A breeze swept in from outside, bringing a humid night air into the tent that swirled her dark brunette hair around her face. “I have been to many places, but I have not yet found those among who I feel I belong and I can aid. I’m hoping to amend that, above all else. Send minas back to my dad on the farm and finish my guide, even.” She fixes her eyes on the ground, her foot rotating slowly in the soft dirt ground, digging into it. “I believe, one day, I will figure it out.” Though her voice is confident, there’s a waver to it and a look of uncertainty in her eyes. “At least, I hope so. Until then, I’ll continue as I am - a ranger who aids where she can.”
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