An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)   Posted by The Raconteur.Group: 0
The Raconteur
 GM, 2116 posts
 Teller of Tales
 Writer of Wrongs
Mon 8 Jun 2015
at 17:27
An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)

“You must attack low when your opponent guards high.”  The dark-skinned man and Kerr faced each other in the training yard, wielding wooden swords while stripped to the waist.  “Or high when he protects low.”  He swept his sword to the side in an acrobatic salute, then leapt to attack.  “You must use the openings given you.”  At this the bald-headed older man drove the younger back across the yard with a flurry of well-placed blows, ending with a yelp as Kerr suffered yet another bruise on a body that seemed purple with them.  “Every man will leave such openings—it is up to you to find them.  Your technique must be fluid.  Like water, your attack must flow to the place of least resistance.”

A thin sheen of sweat glistened from both men despite the coolness of the autumn air.  Kerr nodded, trying not to grit his teeth, and took up a classic dueling stance, ready to resume combat.

Liseth looked on as the swords’ sharp clacks signaled the bout’s resumption.  She thought Kerr had been doing much better of late, in relative terms; the first bout she’d seen had found Kerr spending the majority of his time receiving minor injuries at what seemed like a record-setting pace.  Now he could actually go toe-to-toe with the bigger man for a bit—sometimes a whole half-minute!—before suffering some sort of ignominious defeat.

Ser Minton Klerris, paladin of Iomedae from the temple in Magnimar, had arrived in Sandpoint with the express mission of training Kerr in the ways of his holy order.  The imposing man had almost immediately taken over Kerr’s tutelage from Father Zantus, keeping him late into the evening most days as he drilled the former acolyte on everything from the proper way to interact with nobility to Iomedaen theology to unarmed combat.  And when Kerr was done for the day, the young man was so mentally and physically exhausted all he wanted to do was fall into bed.  Liseth felt like she hardly ever got to see him!

But Ser Klerris wasn’t a complete tyrant.  He allowed Kerr one afternoon off per week, an event both the paladin-in-training and Liseth looked forward to with great anticipation.  This week’s free afternoon was scheduled to start right after Kerr’s swordsmanship lesson.  Liseth had packed a lunch.

When Liseth refocused on Kerr, he was bowing to Ser Klerris.  The older man nodded, said something unintelligible, then pointed at Liseth.  Kerr bowed again, then turned and strode toward his girlfriend, grinning broadly.

“That was better!”  He leaned up against the wall that shielded Liseth from the training area.  “I mean, wasn’t it?  Don’t you think?”  He paused, then laughed.  “On the other hand, maybe you shouldn’t answer that.”  He walked around the wall to retrieve his pack, where he took a long pull from a waterskin, used a clean white cloth to towel himself off, then struggled into his shirt with visible wincing.

“So,” he said, now fully dressed.  “What should we do today?”  He looked hungrily at Liseth’s knapsack.  “Lunch, maybe?  I’m starved!”

Liseth Thoradin
 Human Oracle, 2226 posts
 Deluge of Positive Energy
 HP 36/36
Wed 10 Jun 2015
at 17:34
Re: An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)
"You're the best, Kerr."  Liseth giggled when he was finally given permission to end his training session.  "I'm glad that you decided to go so easy on Ser Klerris!"  She giggled again.

Everything was so great now that there wasn't one catastrophe after another happening in Sandpoint.  Even if Kerr had to spend most of his time training with Ser Klerris.  But Liseth knew that his training was very important if he was to be a Paladin; and she was happy just being able to watch and support him.

It reminded her of when she was just a little girl and she would watch her brother training with her father.  And then later when she would train with her older brother and her father.  Of course, now that she thought about it, Liseth was almost positive that they had been going really easy on her during her training.  The girl certainly didn't recall ever being as exhausted as Kerr at the end of the day!

"Well, I was thinking that we might hold off on lunch for now..."  Liseth managed to keep a straight face for about two seconds; the look on Kerr's face was priceless!  She snickered, "Oh, okay!"

The small blonde reached into her knapsack and retrieved a peach for Kerr.  "I think you might need an extra bit of energy just to make it to lunch.  Because we have to walk all the way over to the beach before I can set up our picnic!"  Liseth giggled; Kerr was so much fun!

"But don't worry!"  She slid her arm into Kerr's, "You'll love what I brought for lunch.  There's even a surprise!"
Kerr Mollin
 NPC, 141 posts
 Acolyte of Desna
 Chosen of Iomedae
Thu 11 Jun 2015
at 07:44
Re: An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)

“Yeah, I’m sure he’s grateful I held back.”  Kerr grinned as he rolled his eyes.  “You would have been so impressed if I had really been going full bore!”  He flexed.  “I’m sure I could have gone, oh, almost a full minute without embarrassing myself!”

“Wait, no lunch . . .”  Kerr sighed as he saw Liseth’s grin.  “Haha.  You’re so very funny, Liseth Thoradin.  Hilarious.  Really.”  He was interrupted by his girlfriend’s peach presentation.  He grabbed the fruit possessively.  “But I’ll forgive you as long as you continue to bring peaches.  As you know,” he eyed her suspiciously, “they’re my favorite.”  He took a big bite.  “So good,” he grinned, mouth full, peach juice running down his chin.

Kerr suddenly realized it was a good thing Ser Klerris was not around to see this very un-paladinesque display.  He was sure the man would have a few stern things to say about propriety and Kerr’s lack thereof.  But that just made him grin all the more.

“A surprise, you say?”  Kerr wiped his mouth clean with a cloth before taking Liseth’s arm and beginning their leisurely stroll to the beach.  He craned his neck, trying to get a glimpse inside her knapsack.  “Do I get a hint?”

But hints were not forthcoming.  Curiosity unassuaged, Kerr resolved to just enjoy the short walk to the beach.  Not that such enjoyment was very hard to come by.  The sun was shining, there was hardly a cloud in the sky, and the cries of hunting gulls punctuated the crash of the waves of the shore.  It was a perfect day—the trials and tribulations of Thistletop seemed very far away.

Kerr waved at a few people he knew as they walked but mostly he just enjoyed talking and being with the most amazing girl in the world on this beautiful Sandpoint afternoon.  When they arrived at the beach, Liseth handed him a blanket and they spread it out on the sand before lying down on it.

“So here we are,” said Kerr, stomach growling.  As good as the peach had been, it hadn’t been very sustaining.  He grinned.  “What’s the surprise?”

Liseth Thoradin
 Human Oracle, 2230 posts
 Deluge of Positive Energy
 HP 36/36
Fri 12 Jun 2015
at 17:39
Re: An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)
"If I gave you a hint, it wouldn't be a surprise!"  Liseth playfully batted Kerr when he tried to peek into her knapsack.  Then the girl giggled, "Besides, a little curiosity is good for you."

At the beach, Liseth produced a blanket from her knapsack and had Kerr help her spread it out on the sand.  She loved being near the water, and with the warm, pleasant sun it felt as though the whole world was smiling at the two of them them.  This was going to be a good day, and Liseth was certain that it could only get better.

Her knapsack saw itself set upon the edge of the blanket before Liseth layed next to Kerr with a contented sigh.

"Not yet!"  She laughed when Kerr asked about the surprise again.  "Everything else has to be set up first."  Liseth sat up and moved towards the surprise-containing knapsack, "You're really hungry, aren't you?"

First she removed three small plates and set them next to herself on the blanket.  Next was a cut of roast beef wrapped in paper, "Merrith let me have that after I said that I was looking for something to prepare for lunch today.  She's really nice; make sure to thank her when you see her!"  The beef was set on to one of the plates.

Next followed a loaf of fresh bread; baked that very morning.  Then a small knife from the amateur chef's cooking kit saw the bread sliced up.  Then the roast beef beef sliced and placed onto the bread slices.  From the knapsack now came a tomato, then a small sweet onion, followed by a small wedge of cheese.  Each of these were sliced and placed on the forming sandwiches; Liseth hummed as she worked, trying not to smile as she pretended to ignore how intensely Kerr was watching the food be prepared.

Last to go on the sandwiches was a bit of lettuce, and finally there were three big sandwiches right there on the blanket with them.  Kerr could eat a lot more than Liseth could ever hope to, so she had the foresight to assume that he might want seconds.  They then separated onto the plates; two on one and one on the other.  "But wait!  That's not the surprise!"  She giggled at Kerr again; he looked desperate to start eating!

Once more going into the knapsack, the diminutive blonde produced a wicker basket; complete with carrying handle and lid.  "This is the surprise..."  She opened the lid, "Dessert!"

Inside was two slices of cake; complete with red sides, pink frosting, and half a strawberry sliced on the top of each one.  "Strawberry cake with strawberry frosting!"  She exclaimed happily.

"I told Ms Kaijitsu that you said it was your favorite, and that I wanted to bake a strawberry cake but had never made one before.  She was so happy to help!"  Liseth giggled, "It was so much fun to work with her in her kitchen.  The rest is still at the Rusty Dragon; I only baked a small one this time, but I don't think that Pisca would ever forgive me if I didn't save her and Kellan and Cato a slice."

"You'll have to tell me what you think.  I had to practice before baking that giant cake we talked about.  So I can give everyone a slice."  She smiled; it looked like Kerr couldn't decide where to start eating now!
Kerr Mollin
 NPC, 142 posts
 Acolyte of Desna
 Chosen of Iomedae
Sat 13 Jun 2015
at 23:22
Re: An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)

“A little curiosity is good for me.  But a lot of curiosity is not!”  Kerr gave Liseth his best puppydog look, using his soulful brown eyes to their best effect, and tried not to be impatient as she set up the picnic.  “I’m ravenous!”

In short order the food was revealed.  “You know,” opined Kerr, watching from his end of the blanket as his girlfriend set out the roast beef, then started slicing the bread.  “This sandwich preparation process is really.”  He drew out the word.  “Really slow.”  He paused.  “Agonizingly slow!”

At long last, the sandwiches were prepared.  Kerr gazed at them hungrily, but was quickly distracted by Liseth’s production of the wicker basket and . . . .

“Strawberry . . . cake.”  Kerr looked at the frosted-pink dessert.  He was stunned.  “It is my favorite!”  He laughed.  “Wow, you were really paying attention!”  He grinned at Liseth and gave her a quick kiss.  “Thanks Liseth!”  He stared at the dessert as if he were afraid it might disappear.  “Desna, I haven’t had strawberry cake since,” he paused, then laughed, “you know, I can’t remember the last time I had strawberry cake!”

Finally—after the two acolytes said a short prayer thanking the gods for their food—it was time to eat, and Kerr wolfed down one of the sandwiches before Liseth even had time to pick hers up!  He blushed as his girlfriend looked on in awe then, hunger somewhat sated, started on the second sandwich at a more-civilized pace.

“This . . . this is amazing, Liseth.”  Kerr finished the sandwich, hunger mostly banished at this point.  “So I guess it’s time for the moment of truth!”  He took his slice of strawberry cake and the proffered utensil, taking a bite and putting it into his mouth.  His eyes closed as he savored it.  “Wow, Liseth,” he said as he finished chewing.  “This cake is amazing.  You and Ameiko did a fantastic job of it!  And you say there’s more?”  He rubbed his hands together greedily, chuckling.  “I don’t think anyone else needs to know about that.  It shall be mine, all mine, I tell you!  Hahaha!”

“Ahem.”  Kerr’s best attempt at an evil chuckle was interrupted by a polite cough from Derren Poliska, the Scarnettis’ majordomo.  Even Derren seemed to realize that his extremely-proper finery stood out terribly on the sandy beach—he looked awfully uncomfortable.  He seemed to be trying to stand an inch above the sand so as not to get any on his fancy-looking shoes.

He was not succeeding very well.

“Mister Poliska!”  Kerr said, his surprise causing him to give the butler a not-very-polite greeting.  “What are you doing here?”

“My master’s business, as ever.”  Derren’s thin, reedy voice reeked of both propriety and condescension.  “In this case, it is to tender you an invitation to dinner this evening, seventh bell, at Scarnetti manor.”  He gave Liseth a pointed look, then turned his attention back to Kerr.  “You are to attend alone.  My master wishes to hear an account of your adventure to Thistletop, a matter of no small interest—and no small expense—to both Sandpoint and the Founding Families.”

Kerr gaped at Derren, his mouth open.  The strawberry-cake crumbs adorning the side of his mouth might have made the scene comical if it weren’t for the young paladin’s obvious distress.  It was clear that he had never been invited to such an event before and equally clear that he had no idea how to respond to the invitation.  He looked over at Liseth.

“I . . . I have plans for tonight.”  He responded weakly.  “If you could offer Mister Scarnetti my apologies?  Maybe I could meet him later, if he talks to Ser Klerris?”

Now it was Derren’s turn to look shocked.  “You are . . . declining?  No one declines . . . very well.”  He turned in a huff.  “Perhaps I shall talk to Ser Klerris.”  He shot a look back at Kerr before marching off towards the cathedral.  “Perhaps I shall!”

Liseth Thoradin
 Human Oracle, 2235 posts
 Deluge of Positive Energy
 HP 36/36
Tue 16 Jun 2015
at 03:38
Re: An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)
Kerr's reaction to the strawberry cake was everything Liseth had hoped for and more.  She beamed as he laughed and continued beaming even as her boyfriend kissed her.  Then she giggled happily once Kerr performed a disappearing act on his first sandwich.

"Don't eat so fast just because you want dessert; you'll give yourself a stomach ache!"  The girl giggled again before starting to nibble on her own sandwich.

Before long, the time came for Kerr to try his slice of cake.  Liseth watched intensely as he took his bite, and was absolutely thrilled at his reaction.  "I don't know Kerr," the blonde acolyte snickered, "Ms Kaijutsu already knows about it, and..."

Interrupted suddenly, Liseth stopped mid sentence.  It was very unexpected for someone to come find them while she and Kerr were on their picnic.  It wasn't as though they had an incredible amount of time to just be alone!

And the girl had no idea who this Mr Poliska was either.  Except that she did recognize the name Scarnetti.  They owned the mill in town where she and Pisca had searched for Katrine that day.  And there was something else...

It hit Liseth suddenly when Kerr's invitation to dinner with Mr Scarnetti was revealed.  And that he was supposed to go alone.  That was exactly what Cerlynne had said she would do...why else would Mr Scarnetti want Kerr to tell him about Thistletop when someone like Cato could do such a better job of it?

There was a surge of emotions that Liseth didn't know what to do with going through her.  "Umm..."  The small teen watched Mr Poliska leave, her afternoon suddenly disrupted terribly.  "Why would he insist that you go to dinner alone?  There were five of us at Thistletop...shouldn't Mr Scarnetti want everyone there to tell him about it?"  She looked at Kerr, her eyes almost frantic, "Or he could ask Cato...Cato knows the most about what was happening there.  Or even Pisca...she's good at telling stories, and she knows about goblins..."

"Kerr...I don't..."  I don't want you to go, Liseth stopped herself from saying; she didn't want to tell Kerr what he could and couldn't do.  "I don't...think that it's right that only you were invited.  I think it's rude to say that no one can come to dinner with you as a guest, especially while we're having lunch."

That sounded better.  How could they tell Kerr not to bring his girlfriend to dinner?  While his girlfriend was sitting right there?  These Scarnettis didn't seem like nice people...

"Maybe we should tell the others about this invitation...ask if they've already invited Kellan or Cato or Pisca."

This message was last edited by the player at 04:57, Tue 16 June 2015.

Kerr Mollin
 NPC, 144 posts
 Acolyte of Desna
 Chosen of Iomedae
Thu 18 Jun 2015
at 19:43
Re: An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)

Kerr looked pensive as he watched the Scarnettis’ majordomo stalk off towards the cathedral, then turned back towards his girlfriend.  “Who knows why the Scarnettis do anything?”  He responded.  Seeing her distress, he swept her up in a hug.  “It’s nothing to worry about,” he reassured her, misinterpreting the source of her anxiety.  “While Mister Scarnetti is, um, well, maybe not the most upstanding leader among the five families—you’ve heard the rumors, I guess?--he’s never had anything against me personally.”  Kerr laughed.  “I mean, why would he?  I’m Kerr Mollin, not anyone who might challenge his influence.”

He released Liseth from the hug and held her at arm’s length, looking into her eyes.  “So there’s really no danger or anything.  Although you’re right, it’s strange that you weren’t invited as well.  That was kind of rude.  Although gods know the Scarnettis aren’t renowned for their courtesy.”  He looked back towards the cathedral.  “Maybe Mister Poliska didn’t know who you were?  Although,” he cocked his head to the side and looked over her shoulder, eyes unfocused, as if thinking, “that’s hard to believe.”  He laughed.  “Sandpoint’s a small town.”  He gave her a grin.  “Everybody knows about us.  We aren’t exactly keeping it a secret.”

“Or maybe they just wanted someone they knew and thought was trustworthy?”  Kerr’s eyes snapped back to Liseth, as if he felt he’d solved the mystery.  “They can be provincial like that.  I mean, I’ve known the Scarnettis all my life.  So has Kellan.  But you, Cato, and Pisca are relative newcomers.”  He nodded, then hugged her again.  “That’s probably it.  See?  Nothing to worry about.”

“But,” Kerr suddenly spun away, thrusting one finger up in the air and striking a heroic pose, “there’s no way I’m going to let Titus Scarnetti ruin our only afternoon together!  Mister Poliska can go bother Ser Klerris about taking up some of his training time.”  He chuckled.  “I wish I could be a fly on the wall during that conversation.  I can’t think of two more different men.  Maybe Mister Poliska will persuade Ser Klerris, and maybe he won’t.”  Kerr stretched, suddenly aware of the soreness in his muscles.  “I could certainly use a break!”

He wrapped an arm around Liseth, snuggling comfortably.  "So, did you want to go track down the others?  Or should we continue with our afternoon?"

This message was last edited by the player at 19:45, Thu 18 June 2015.

Liseth Thoradin
 Human Oracle, 2240 posts
 Deluge of Positive Energy
 HP 36/36
Fri 19 Jun 2015
at 23:02
Re: An Acolyte's Intermission (Liseth)
Liseth snuggled against Kerr, letting him pull her against him with his arm.  She felt like he was drawing the wrong conclusions about her distress; which was probably correct. Kerr was too sweet to even think about ulterior motives behind this invitation to the Scarnetti house.

Liseth saw the way that Cerlynne glared at her; and talked as though Liseth wasn't even there.  And those things she said to Kerr.  The girl could not picture anything other than Cerlynne Scarnetti behind Kerr's invitation to come to dinner; there was no other reason why he'd be required to go alone.

But how could she let Kerr know that without sounding jealous?  Or needy?  Or even controlling?  She should trust Kerr, but that did nothing to keep the tiny blonde from being scared to death of letting him go to dinner with that dissolute Cerlynne girl.

So Liseth just sighed gently as she rested her head against Kerr's chest and stared out into the ocean.  As though the horizon stretching before her might somehow present a solution to her unexpected problem.

"We'll see Kellan and..." Kellan, "the others at the Rusty Dragon tonight, I'm sure."  Kellan was there when Cerlynne ambushed Kerr that time, he would know what this dinner was really about.  "Can we just stay her a while longer?  I like the ocean."

"Then maybe we should go and find Sir Jaspar.  We still need to tell him about Father Gabriel."  She smiled and wormed her way even closer to Kerr, managing a short laugh "And you need to spend more time around Paladins who aren't drilling you so relentlessly.  Before you get soured on the whole idea!"