Prologue: Rua.   Posted by DM.Group: 0
 Dungeon Master, 4 posts
Sat 3 Jul 2021
at 06:14
Prologue: Rua
Rua's beginnings.
 player, 3 posts
 What is out there?
Sat 3 Jul 2021
at 21:31
Prologue: Rua
The summer breeze, bringing the news of the coming autumn, pushed the girl’s hood back. She was bent over her work by the river, mending a fish net that had torn the night before.

Rua lifted her freckled face to meet the wind, taking a deep breath.

“Paradise,” she whispered, not wanting to disturb the birds and squirrels chattering above her. She finished, and laid the net back into the water. It was a slow and lazy river, and Rua caught her reflection: soft features greeted her, and as she leaned over, her fiery hair tumbled over her shoulders, dipping into the water and framing her. Rua didn’t want to think of herself as pretty, as she had no one to compare herself to and vanity was strongly dissuaded from her as a child. Still, Rua preened and picked at her braids, the jingle of beads and other accessories followed.

Rua’s cheeks burned with embarrassment when she stopped herself.

“Now I’ll really get it,” she hissed to her reflection, “Of course why am I talking to you? You’re the one who got me into this mess.” She stood up and brushed off the dirt and pine needles. The sun was entering the middle of its arc, and the air had warmed significantly since the morning. Rua removed her cloak, wrapped it over her arm, and set on her way back up the mountain. She was careful not to leave a trace of her passing.
 player, 4 posts
 What is out there?
Mon 5 Jul 2021
at 23:10
Prologue: Rua
Rua picked up the empty stone cup off of her master’s desk. The old man was off somewhere, probably getting lost in thought over a weed or some other plant. The rest of the desk was covered in parchment and a few piles of books. The hut they shared was mostly bare. Muds wall and a thatch roof, with two cots, the desk with a chair, a table with two stools, and a small hearth in the middle surrounded by stones. Rua returned the cup to its rightful place on the table, dodging the drying herbs hanging from the ceiling. Prep for the coming winter had been underway the past few days and would continue until the stores were full.

She draped her cloak over her cot, ducked her head through the door and returned outside. The grove where the hut squatted mostly consisted of pines, with some birches weaving between them, battling for sunlight. Rua shaded her eyes and looked up at the sky. It was bluer than blue, with no clouds in sight. There were perhaps 7 to 9 hours left of the day. Taking one braid, she tied her hair back at the base of her neck, and set off eastward, where most of the truffles and nuts fell over summer. Hopefully, the critters of the forest would share their bounty with her.
 player, 5 posts
 What is out there?
Wed 7 Jul 2021
at 19:04
Prologue: Rua
“What did you learn today?” the old man dapped at his long wispy beard with a cloth. Some rabbit stew had dripped on it.

Rua sighed, and snapped, “That three hours in the sun without a covering is very irritating.” Her back and shoulders itched beneath her shirt even as she spoke.

Her master gave her a long, exasperated look. Rua was cowed down.

“That likening myself to some form of greatness - vanity - only feeds the desire for power.”

“Indeed, child,” his eyebrows went far down, his tone serious, “We must never feed our natural selves, or it will overpower us and cause chaos. Fires we cannot put out that harm others in our paths.”

Rua said nothing, she only stirred her stew in her bowl. Her master had never looked so old to her as when he talked of self-reservations. Yes, his snowy white hair and long beard gave him a wise appearance, but his wrinkles deepened and his eyes would go dark. Every evening meal time, he would ask her the same questions in ritual form, never straying from routine.

By the time that their beeswax candles had gotten halfway down, Rua had nearly finished with her nightly duties: clear the table, wrap the bread, and rinse the stoneware in the nearby spring. Her master would take one of the two candles off the table and return to his vigil at his desk. She knelt in the grass beside the pool with her basket and carefully stripped off her shirt. Her skin was already peeling after her long exposure, and Rua knew she would have some blisters tomorrow. She dipped her shirt in the water until it was soaked, ringed out the excess and laid it on her back while she rinsed the bowls and utensils.

The cool water was soothing, but was soon gone and replaced with irritating heat. Rua repeated her action a few more times before returning to the hut.
 player, 7 posts
 What is out there?
Sun 8 Aug 2021
at 17:12
Prologue: Rua
Rua healed much faster than she thought she would. But then, perhaps that was usual for her anyway. Many of the physical punishments given to her didn’t take for long, even if they looked to turn serious, or even infect.

It was also because she had healed so quickly, her master decided to set her to work with the beehives.

“The bee is the wisest of all creatures,” he said, though it was muffled through his woven mask, tucked securely into his hood, “Its work is truly divine and of the greatest use to us. Every part of their labor is useful with no room for waste. They follow their leaders with obedience and are extremely clean. They want nothing of the impure.” He bent low and waved his hand at the small flame. The smoke was thick and sickly smelling.
“Hence their distaste for the dung fire,” Rua piped in, smearing a mixture of ash and more dung on the side of the hive. The hives were made from beechwood boards, and only required maintenance every now and then. The colder months were soon upon them, so it was high time for last minute checks and harvest. This particular hive needed new paste, and it had to dry quickly before the bees returned.

“Exactly, dear one,” her master stood and resumed his preaching, “Bees are not greedy, and do not spoil the work of others, but it will defend its own to the death. It is also the only animal that looks to a leader to care for the community. Always honoring them, following them, and protecting them.” He lifted the top of the hive and gently placed it on the ground. He hummed as he inspected the inside, “One third for us, and two thirds for them,” he mumbled.

He pulled out a piece of comb that was overcrowding a larger piece, and then another.

“It particularly hates laziness; bees unite to kill ones who do no work and use up others’ production. Its mechanical skill and near-logical understanding is shown by the fact that it makes hexagonal cells to store the honey.” To make his point, he lifted one comb and pointed at the capped honey. Rua was more interested in the way the sun shone through the honey, and just how beautiful it was. It varied in color, but not by much. Most of it was a light golden color from the flowers most near the hive. Rua’s master replaced the top, and moved onto the next hive, leaving Rua with her work and her thoughts.