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A Moment in Thyme

PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2017 4:06 am
by Songhue
Finally, some peace.

Thyme, simply put, was almost as sensitive to energies of the land as earth elementals. It was a different sort of sensitivity, one that had little to do with the growth and plants and everything to do with the spirit of the realm itself. The lands were alive - in certain places, particular realms. This, his birth realm, certainly was just as sentient as his homeland. It was also much, much quieter, almost slumbering.

Home had been healed, the land fully restored, and creatures of all kinds have been flocking in. There was something going on about twins, somewhere, and with the realm tied into the spirit of every creature it harbors it was rather a big deal; everyone felt it. Then there was the little pocket of shimmer points, portals to a sister land that would be linked intricately enough to lose all definition. Maybe. There was also an idea being tossed around about simply taking a piece of the sister realm completely off and reattaching it to home, like peeling moss off a living tree to let it feed on an old log. The trouble was detaching without damage, and then encouraging reattachment. And all of that was, of course, if such a transfusion would even be permissible.

The realm was practically singing with so much activity, so much fresh life being bound and wandering about to establish territories. As wonderful as it was, Thyme had found himself needing to step away. An oasis in the thriving hum was more than welcome.

He knew he'd be able to count on his birthland for that pocket of quiet. He had ulterior motivations, if he was to be honest with himself, but the driving factor was a need for peace.

He'd met a mare, once, some time ago; a mare who shared lands in his realm, lands belonging to the territory of another. His bonded had given strict instructions that they were not to wander from the personal territory of her clan. There was no danger, not worth mentioning, but if they were to remain under her personal protection then they had to remain within the borders of her territory. There were other creatures similar to their own kind that wandered freely as part of the lands; they could do the same, if they truly wished, but the moment they did they left her protection until they could make it home again.

Thyme had thought, more than once, of stepping away from that safety and crossing into the territories of Nymph and her bonded. They shared the realm, after all; it would be easy. But he worried, a rather new sensation for the large stallion. Did she even want to see him? He knew where her home was, yes, but she equally knew of his... Would his unannounced wandering bring trouble to nip at his hocks? Would the mare's bonded accept a stranger to her personal territory? With everything going on, it may be that such an extra distraction would be rather unwelcome. He knew his own bonded and her family were playing rather active roles in helping the influx of creatures rushing home; perhaps Nymph's bonded was doing the same. Thyme might not know the details of what his bonded did, but he could feel the draw on her own energy reserves.

So many ties; to his bonded, and through her to his bondmates, and to the realm itself, which tied him to all other lives that scurried and flew through the lands. He could sense the twins that came just as much as anyone else; one of them was in danger of overpowering the other, snuffing out the spark of light before they had a chance to start. They were stabilized for now, but everyone was holding their breath, even while watching the sister-realm from the corners of their eyes.

What if Nymph's bonded was helping with the twins, or with the sister-realm, or simply helping everyone who found their way back as his own bonded was doing? There was so much going on. Could he really add to that by trying to trail after some pretty mare?

At least here it was quiet. If he was lucky she might feel the same, may need a break as well... If not, he could enjoy the tang of a different grass, the feel of a different sun, the sigh of a different breeze.

He sighed, idly grazing as his tail swished around his legs, enjoying the sensation of quiet that made the rest of the noise faint and indistinct. It was all far away, now.

There was peace here. Life slumbered, in the small pocket of the realm that was the haven to his kind. Storms of magic still raged across distant hills, but not here.

Here, the lands were quiet.

A squirrel watch him for a time before hurrying off to gather a few last acorns for the winter store. Some few birds, not quite yet having migrated, chirped softly as the late afternoon light lay heavy between the trees. The sun was still warm, but the air was growing cool. The grass was still thick and juicy, but there were patches that had begun to dry and wither. Autumn was coming to this land; his favorite season, perverse as it may seem.

It wouldn't be long before the burning colors of summer's flowers was replaced with flaming notes through the trees.

Everything was beginning to prepare for winter's long sleep, and he absolutely loved it.

Re: A Moment in Thyme

PostPosted: Wed Sep 06, 2017 9:59 pm
by Talia
For all intensive purposes, there was nothing "wrong" with home. The cottage was the same; secluded, wonderfully tucked away from humanity, quaint, and full of loving presences. But something was still... off. Things were changing, far faster than Nymph would like, and she felt like she was being inexplicably dragged down by the all of the adjustments. She yearned for simplicity, the wind in her mane and the earth under her hooves. She wanted quiet- not the oppressive silence that seemed to go hand in hand with something forbodding, but the barest and gentlest of sounds, like a gallop at midnight with nothing but the owls to keep her company. Or the soft cooing of the birds in the trees at sunset while she made her way through stand after stand of trees.

The Rogues had just... left... one afternoon, as if summoned by some mysterious force. The cottage had been abuzz with speculation. Her Lady had not seemed phased by their disappearance. She, more than anyone, understood their nature, and knew that they would return when the time was right. The more motherly members of the herd fussed over their well-being. The less even-tempered Serians ranted about how inconsiderate they were, and worried over them in private. The stir they had caused at the cottage was enough to set off the gentle mare. She wasn't too keen on change, dissension... anything that disrupted the careful calm she had created around herself and in this realm. She didn't see the necessity in worrying- if the Lady had been distressed, she would have had cause for concern. But Shimmer and Galaxy had always been enigmas; she didn't think much of it, if truth be told.

It was more than that though. The very air seemed to thrum with energy, so much so that it set her skin on edge and incited that fight or flight (primarily flight) instinct of hers. There was no imminent danger, not that she could see at least, just something... else. She couldn't quite put her hoof on it, and the Lady wasn't sharing, not yet at least.

While the world unfolded around her, she looked for an escape. Her mind wandered back to times where she had been most serene, and on a whim she let her memories guide her as she galloped out of the valley and deeper into the wooded outskirts. She wasn't afraid, she had no need to be. While the forest was an unknown to most, there had always been this sense of familiarity and warmth every time she set foot into its depths.

She let herself feel the forest's gentle pulse; she inhaled the fresh earthy smells and smiled softly at the sensation of the earth giving way under her hooves. The wind was gentle, and the sun trickled in through the dense canopy, casting highlights and shimmers on her mane and wings. She flicked her tail lazily and blinked heavily. She felt sedated, fulfilled. Only one thing was missing...

Her thoughts drifted back to a time, not so long ago, where she had met a stallion who's instincts and mind were similar to her own. There was something in her very soul that called to him. It was inexplicable and intricate, a beautiful connection that she would have loved to explore more. But she had let herself be driven by simple fear. What if she wasn't enough? She had always been plagued by niggling self-doubt, it was one of her major flaws. He had been majestic, the very embodiment of the woods. He was most definitely a kindred spirit, but next to him she felt like a child that still required teaching. She didn't balk at learning new things, it wasn't that. She was just... intimidated, and she felt decidedly unworthy next to his near-elemental instincts. And yet, he had nuzzled her and settled down with her in the tall grass, his affection evident. She had wrapped his closeness around her like a safety blanket, and basked in his warmth. It had been but a moment, but it had meant more to her than she had originally realized.

She hadn't realized that she was standing still, daydreaming in place, oblivious even to the small field mouse that skittered across her path. She sighed, but paused mid exhale as she heard a similar noise not too far off.

She edged forward out of natural timidness, her ears flicking idly as she strained to pinpoint the source of the noise. She started to weave her way through the trees and underbrush until she came across a familiar Serian, grazing quietly. Her eyes lit up with surprise and warmth, and she surprised herself by feeling the heat hit her nose in a dainty blush. She had paused in the treeline- thank goodness he hadn't seen her in such a state. How embarrassing!

She gathered her courage and trotted softly up beside him until they were flank to flank. She smiled gently, her head tilted ever so slightly as she spoke; her voice was as light and musical as the songbirds, or so she had been told.

It has been too long, dear friend, she said, as she dipped her head to graze nearest to him. What must he be thinking? Hopefully he hadn't thought she had been avoiding him. He seemed much too sensible for that. None the less, she still feared that he might somehow be angry with her. Or had she imagined a connection between them after all? Perhaps their recent distance had been enough, and her careful use of the word "friend" was actually entirely accurate.

She tried not to fret, and instead just focused on him, on being near him and enjoying the warmth of the late summer sun.

Re: A Moment in Thyme

PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 6:24 pm
by Songhue
He lifted his head just slightly as she stepped next to him, flicking an ear towards the delicate looking Nymph. She had nothing that would jingle, nothing to distinguish her by sound alone, and yet he already knew the ebb and flow of her breath, the beat of her step. He knew her without seeing her; it simply brought a smile to have it confirmed as she lowered her head next to his to graze.

A small shift of his weight was all that was needed to bring him just that little bit closer, an attempt to brush his shoulder against hers as he reached to nuzzle her cheek. Thyme couldn't help but want to touch her, to be just that little bit closer.

Far too long, dearest. Have you been well? Has the new buzz at home reached as far as your bonded's territory?

He never tried to be overbearing, and honestly most would never consider it a possibility. He wasn't quite used to fussing over someone; Thyme just hoped she wouldn't mind.

He should have braved the journey, that much was obvious as soon as she stepped near. He could always apologize to her bonded for leaving his own lands; they did share a realm, the lands of Enchantra, so it was honestly simpler than opening a portal back to Sionayra. Why had he hesitated?

I've missed you, sweet lady. I'm sorry I didn't come find you.

Re: A Moment in Thyme

PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:21 am
by Talia
(OOC: I'll call her Nymph for the purpose of continuing this thread. :) I know her name will likely be changed in the future))

She was suddenly overtaken by a fit of nerves. His gentle smile was enough to coax out out a tentative one of her own however. She resisted the urge to shuffle nervously, but he had always had this uncanny knack of knowing exactly what she needed in that moment. When he nuzzled her, her breath came out in a small sigh of contentment and relief. Apparently she need not have worried. His affection was proof positive enough for her that he has missed her, at the very least, although the extent of his affections were still relatively unknown. Her heart craved that verbal validation; she knew that without it, a tiny part of her would always guard her heart.

When he spoke, she smiled again, but hid it by lightly burrowing her muzzle into his mane. He had welcomed their closeness, so she felt that she would be remiss in not returning his affections. She drank in the smell of him and basked in his strength. She rested her cheek against the curve of his neck, so that she was hidden from view but still touching. She stilled then, and spoke softly to him.

I am sorry. I should have come sooner, she replied. I've been well, but kept quite busy lately with everything that has been going on at home. It has kept me from many a person and thing, unfortunately.

Her voice was tinged with regret. She knew she should have made time to see him, but she had hesitated. She didn't want to be a burden to him. He had already been kind to her, and so careful with her feelings. She didn't want him to worry over her, not when he had much more important things to attend to.

With his last admission, her eyes widened and she moved to press her cheek to his.

I was just thinking much the same thing, she said. I should have come. I've missed you terribly.

Re: A Moment in Thyme

PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 4:56 am
by Songhue
The touch, the scent of her was amazing, inducing him to track her movements as she returned the small touches he had offered in greeting. It was surprising that he even noticed her delicate aroma, since he was most renowned for his own aura of the woodlands - wet and wood and earth and all things green - but notice it he did, an almost leafy floral undernote that tangled and complimented his own. If he had wanted to resist pressing his nose into her mane as she pressed into his neck, he wasn't sure he could have. But he didn't want to resist.

And, oh, here she was, taking blame upon herself. Now that he couldn't allow.

Shhh, he crooned, lipping gently at the gem in her mane, no blame on you, beloved. You were right to stay. I may not be the strongest, not even within my circle, but I could have navigated the other species within the realm for the sake of seeing someone I love. The responsibility was mine. I know your bonded has been off running in circles with the mate of my bonded, and that makes home the safest place for you. I would not risk having you damaged by the earthshakers or watercallers while your bonded is so occupied.

There were other names for the creatures, he knew that, but at the moment he couldn't remember any for the life of him. There were stormweavers, firewalkers, all kinds of creatures, and each held a name. Their names hadn't ever been too important to him, though. Before all of this started up there had rarely been interspecies interactions, much less incidents. Now, there were some who would come to play with his bonded's kind - earthshakers, the whole species, and oh were they ever prideful beasts and so easily spooked. They were easy to navigate - the only true need was never to betray them - and yet it had seemed safest to hover at home just in case something had gone wrong.

Except there had been no true danger; nothing more than the teeming of change surging through the land, change greater than the seasonal shifting. Thyme loved the predictable cycle of the seasons. He loved peace, comfort. It had been hard to adjust to, but it was only when she was beside him again that he realized his sweet forbidden mare might have also had visitors of strange kinds as her bonded scrambled to all corners. He could have helped her navigate any strangers, or at least shown her the best places to avoid them while they came to play.

I should have been there, should have found you, he whispered, and dropped his nose to the autumn leaves that graced her neck, I'm so sorry, Nymph. For having been uncertain, having had questions on how welcome he might be, for being afraid of being turned away, of somehow failing in this great effort - for being scared. Sorry for so much. Already, he had made mistakes. He didn't dare - not quite - ask for forgiveness. Afraid, once again.

At home he was one of the protected. So gentle a soul that normally, he would never venture forth alone. And yet there were two even more delicate than himself, there were still responsibilities of his own. He wasn't helpless. Thyme simply hated confrontation and with all the recent upset - well. Enough excuses. He had been perfectly capable of traveling to her. Had it been one of the two who looked to him for help, he could have seen them back to safety. She had been safe, she had been at home, but he had both the reason and ability to find his way to her.

It was her guilt that brought his own failures to light. If he had been there...

Re: A Moment in Thyme

PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2018 11:33 pm
by Talia
The warmth in his voice was soothing; she could bask in those gentle tones like she would the sun at the beginning of summer. Not warm enough to scald, but just warm enough to make her completely content. She drew in a deep steady breath and sighed softly. Everything about him reminded her of home. Here, with him, she truly belonged; surrounded by the woodlands, the sunshine, and the underbrush, she knew that this was where she was meant to be. He was just the final piece of the puzzle.

She startled slightly at his voice. She had been so lost in thought and sensation that time had seemed to stand still for a few moments. His touch brought her back to herself, but she stilled as his words washed over her. His declaration of love and his whispered apology made her legs begin to tremble. She tried to hide it by laying gracefully at his feet. She rested her cheek against his chest, but her position made it so that she had to tilt her head upwards slightly to see him, lest she hurt him with her antlers. There was no avoiding his eyes; he would be able to see any emotion that played across her face, as she was terrible at hiding what she was thinking. She had never been good at those kind of games, and had never wanted to be for that matter.

Love. she stated, more to herself than anything. She smiled softly, and shook her head ever so slightly so as to not move her cheek too much from its warm resting place. I am the fool Thyme. It was my own ridiculous insecurities that kept me away from you. And yet here you are, shouldering all of the blame yourself. I had doubted how you felt. I knew it was unreasonable. I should have trusted in myself, and in you for that matter. This was not solely your responsibility, it was shared. Here you were, worried for my safety. You have always been a noble, chivalrous stallion, one of the many things I adore about you. We both worried after the other unnecessarily. Don't apologize my love. We both refused to see that the safest place for me was by your side.

It was true that her bonded was often out as of late, as were the Rogues, Elementals and Warriors. It was as if the world was holding its collective breath. She wasn't sure what was amiss, but she was almost happy being blissfully ignorant for now. She never feared for her own safety; there were many a fierce stallion or mare in her herd. But it was true that she would have felt utterly at ease with Thyme by her side.

She touched her nose to him and nuzzled him gently, trying to comfort him. They had both been frightened, or so it seemed. But she refused to let him feel like this was all his doing. He was too gentle a soul, too kind, for any of this to have been deliberate. She couldn't bear to hear that slight note of hurt in his voice, or see that bit of disappointment in his eyes. She tried to chase it all away with a smile, and a playful nudge.

I've decided that the name Nymph no longer suited me, she said, trying to lighten the mood. Her rustling dragonfly wings were the only indication that she was still worried and anxious. I've taken a new name, Sylvansprite.