For those interested in knowing how Arthion and Raen’s interlude concluded, off screen the players met along with Arillian to determine some timing issues and reactionary responses.
It appears that after sitting by the fireside in the conference room comforting Raen in her moments of feeling somewhat homesick, lost, and lonely, Arthion held her within his arms and when she raised her head with tears running down her cheek, he became concerned. Feeling embarrassed at the show of weakness, Raen began to rise to excuse herself. As she began to pull away, Arthion gently pulled back against her with a whisper of, “Raen?,” a look of concern, compassion, and something else within his eyes.
She didn’t want to take advantage of him as she could tell he had taken a bit more to drink than usual, but then she saw clearly into what that something else was. Arthion had love in his eyes. She was confused and relieved at the same time, for it seemed what had started as a convenient cover for them to share as a guise for their time together to train him in the rogueish arts, had somehow rooted a real feeling within Arthion. She didn’t want to mislead or deceive him. She simply looked deep into his eyes and asked if he would allow them to wait for words in the morning and agree to grant her solace in his arms that night.
They retired to Arthion and Arillian’s room which was empty, locked the door and shared a night of sanctuary and passion with each other.
Arillian, upon finally returning to his room from the library to find the door locked, was slightly confused, but then listened in the room and could hear soft whispers and rustlings. He could tell it was Arthion inside, but did not know who his roommate had brought to his bed. With a smile of approval, Arillian left his roommate be, and found a spare bed in Thakorn’s room.
In the morning, Raen and Arthion spoke with each other. He appeared happy and made no excuse for the night before. Raen was somewhat more reserved, but appeared to be content from their night together. They discussed how they would handle the consummation of this relationship with the others and those around them. Raen felt sure the others would figure it out and they needn’t make an anouncement or show of it. If anyone asked they could simply say they were exploring the nature of their relationship.
Raen expressed concerns that it was possible that her people may not look kindly on her fostering a relationship. She was very honest with Arthion that she had a duty and a mission for her people that she could not throw aside. She also spoke frankly that she would most likely never be able to share everything with him, but placing her hands on either side of his face and looking directly into his eyes, she boldly stated, that what she does and what her mission is holds great weight and it serves to protect everyone, not just her people, but the entire world, from harm. She awaited his response to the fact that there would ever be secrets between them if they pursued a relationship; she prepared herself for a courteous, but kind withdrawal from her new lover. Instead, he confirmed that he could trust in her enough that he could live with the unsaid things between them. He mentioned her home, and she grew quiet and sad for a moment in non-response. He realized that this was a token of what she couldn’t talk about.
“I’ll most likely never see it, will I?” he asked.
She could only softly shake her said and respond with a soft, “No.”
Seeing that he was fully accepting of this, whether he understood fully what it meant, Raen teared up again, this time in joy as she kissed him gently on the mouth. Their kiss turned more passionate and they again joined as one in their new, blossoming love.
When they showed up to breakfast together, Arthion with a face of joy and Raen with a blush-tinged glow, Arillian knew at once who had been with Arthion in their room last night. He was glad that Arthion had found a moment of pleasure and as he left from the breakfast room passing behind the couple, he quipped that he hoped they had enjoyed themselves last night.
Later on, Arillian pulled Arthion aside for a discussion. After confirming what had happened and receiving Arthion’s almost astonishment at what had occurred with a half-spoken, “….I…..I never thought…” Arillian stated his happiness for his friend, but then began to speak frankly to Arthion about the implications this may have for their party. He was quite forthright in that it was something that he prayed would not become a detriment to the group. He was concerned about a possible distraction or neglect of duty at the wrong time being dangerous. Arthion assured him that Raen and he would take every measure that the couple’s state would not hinder or endanger the group.
Raen had shown up at Arthion’s room before dinner to speak with him. She seemed honestly bothered by what she was about to say, but continued on. She shared with him that she was receiving some new training of her own and that through this training she was in part fulfilling her mission. She became even more reserved and bowed her head as she gently spoke to Arthion. She brought up the magic dagger that he had gotten after one of their battles. Afraid she would be perceived as taking advantage of their situation she softly continued on. She explained that with what she was learning there would soon be a time when her shortsword would no longer be ideal to her needs. Haltingly, she continued that daggers would be instrumental to her, and almost pained she pointed out that she had yet to see him use his. It was clear that she was asking for his dagger, but she was fighting with herself over even bringing it up. She said she had little to trade for it, some potions or she could swap her own for his as to not leave him fully unguarded. He simply walked to the dresser and unlocked the drawer pulling out the item.
He looked at Raen seeing that it pained her that she didn’t have more to offer, and knowing that she didn’t want to take advantage of him. He sat next to her and said perhaps there was something she could help him with in return. This snagged Raen’s attention and she waited patiently for him to continue. He expressed that perhaps she could speak with Daggerwing about his mother to see if she had any ideas on where she might be or what she might be up to. With that Raen got a strange smirk on her face. She agreed that they could indeed see if Daggerwing had any information for him, but what she said next fully caught Arthion by surprise. She stumbled slightly over the words in some small feeling of guilt, but told Arthion that there were other sources that she had already reached out to for the whereabouts and doings of his mother. When he had first shared with her his story and his fears about his mother, she had sent in the inquiry along with her report to her people back home. She said that she did not know when or if they would respond or even if they would know anything, but that it had seemed important enough worth mentioning, and so she had already moved to seek knowledge on the woman. Arthion was taken aback a bit, but appeared truly happy that Raen had judged his own interests as something that might be very important indeed. He gave her a great hug, and then added that there might be something else that she could help him with in exchange for the dagger. He said that he desired a large pearl that he would find useful after he had completed his own training. It should be worth at least 100gp. She laughed. Easy enough. She could definitely keep an eye out for such an item. The laughed turned wistful as she softly said, too bad we’re not back home. The thought of a pearl leaves me in mind of the shores of our land, which I am certain would hold that type of treasure within its waters. At that, Arthion took her hands and softly laid the dagger in them, gently placed her hands around it, and lovingly cupped his own over hers.
It was shortly after when Arillian arrived at the quarters himself. The couple got a small razzing from Arillian as he began to change his shirt before going to dinner. It was when he was standing with his back to the couple that Raen looked upon Arillian’s bared torso for the first time. She was taken aback at how the dragon scales that had started to appear on both of them were dramatically similar in color, shape, and pattern. She gave a nudge to Arthion and directed his gaze toward Arillian. Arthion gave her a sheepish nod as Arillian turned to continued their conversation.
Being a gentleman, Arillian inquired if they needed to change the rooming arrangements. Arthion paused at that and looked to Raen. Deciding for the time being to leave things as they were, the three did work out a code to let Arillian know if the room was being “used.”
Once again Raen became somewhat sheepish and asked Arillian about his own magic dagger, the twin to the one she had just received. After some discussion, Arillian agreed to hand it to her, but in return she was required to lobby for him to receive one magic item of his choice should they come across something that interested him. Cautiously, Raen agreed with the stipulation that she would not assist him to retain an item that was inherently evil or would pose a threat to him or to the group. They agree that items are as a whole only as good or evil as their owner, but that there are indeed dangerous items abroad. So it was agreed upon that as long as proper identification of the item showed it to be safe to wield that she would indeed support him receiving the item of his choice. After that, Arillian left for dinner with the couple stating they would be there shortly. He gave them a knowing grin and left the room.
Arthion looked to Raen not knowing for sure what her purpose was, but when he looked at her he could see she was all business. “Your markings. You two could pass as twins. When are you going to talk to him?”
Arthion hestitated, and said that he was concerned about what would happen if he breeched the subject with Arillian. She stared at him and stated that it needed to be soon, and here, in a safe place, where he had time to contemplate what they had to discuss if Arthion was truly concerned by Arillian’s reaction. She inquired if Arthion was concerned about his own safety as well as that of Arillian’s. The answer boiled down to both. Raen offered to be with them when they spoke, if Arthion desired it. He committed to speak with Arillian that evening after dinner. Raen asked again, “Do you want me to be with you? If you want me here, I’m here. If you want me near, I’ll be near. If you want me far away, I’ll be near.” Arthion said that indeed, he would appreciated it if Raen was near when his talk with Arillian started. To which she said, “Done. Tonight, after dinner.”
We await to see what topic could have Arthion so on edge and to see what the dwarves will make of the new group dynamic once they come up from drinking.