Lorsalian looked out through a break in the upper foliage of the tree onto the forest below him. The view from up here is simply wonderful, he marveled. The leaves around him had begun to turn a golden red from the bright green a few weeks earlier, but he tried not to let it get to him. Not everything is a symbol.
He looked down to see ice blue eyes staring up from a pale face framed by silver hair as Lilira climbed the tree and looked around. “This tree appears to be occupied now,” she observed, grinning wryly, then added as explanation, “I've come here before to practice my music.”
Sensing something, Lorsalian chanted briefly, and a frowning smoky form of ash resolved, hovering, to Lilira's left. “Referring to me, or the form to your left?” Lorsalian asked calmly.
Lilira's cheeks flushed, and she looked apologetically at the para-elemental. “Oh. Him. He's under my control, for the moment.”
Lilira looked sadly at the smoke para-elemental. Her eyes brightening, she changed the subject. “Actually, this is fortuitous. I wanted to speak to you.” Her expression then changed again to nervousness, and she glanced furtively to the base of the tree as if looking for something.
She apologized again. “I'm jumpy.”
“Not altogether a wise thing to be in a tree, but occasionally better than eternal stillness,” the ranger replied, then after a few moments, chuckled self-deprecatingly, and added, “Sorry, this view occasionally makes me over eloquent. You were saying?”
“I need your assistance, but I can't tell you why. But first I must ask you a question or two.”
His eyebrow raised, he listened.
“When we were on the isle at the court of the Queen, you behaved as though it were not your first time? I don't mean to be intrusive,” she quickly apologized, “Certainly if you do not wish to give me the details, I will not press you for them.”
He sighed, pondering. Turning back towards Lilira, he replied, “Far from it. Many times during, well,” he nodded at her, “you know.”
She nodded in return, and he continued, “I answered the call for aid, and escorted Llandrien until he wandered away. I imagine I was more civil then than recently, however.” With a brief smirk, he concluded, “But that is too much of my own problems – unless you want to hear them.”
“Certainly good sir. One day after I have finished getting up to my no longer existing eartips in trouble, perhaps one day we can swap tales.”
Lorsalian frowned consolingly as he again noticed the scars on either side of her head, but Lilira merely shrugged, “Tis something I have put in the past. No longer does it matter.”
“What kind of woman is the Queen? I have met her only once,” she asked, warming to her subject.
“Stern, engrossed in traditions, yet not quite as ... intolerant, as some. She regrets letting those brigands land, but she will not move against.”
A band of shipwrecked humans had been allowed to make their homes after contributing some aid to the court in the swell of goodwill that followed the destruction of the vile one. They had turned out to be among the worst that humanity could offer as examples – slavery, and rampant logging with no efforts to rebuild their ship had followed. Lor feared the current renewed conservative stance was influenced by these miscreants.
Correctly anticipating a long-winded tale, Lilira settled to a sitting position in the structure atop the tree, as Lor stood and continued, “And she lets me into her presence, which is more than some, but that's the other tale again,” he smiled, looking again to his guest.
“I have the misfortune to be related to one who is intolerant. That audience recently was the result of some machination on the part of a relation of mine. I am waiting for a message. If it is the one I hope for, I will be once more entering into the presence of Her Majesty. However my reason to see her is to deliver a message. I thought at first to go alone.”
Lorsalian rolled his eyes slightly. "To deliver a message to summon a messenger from across the seas to deliver to a neighbor is either foolish or arrogant."
“Tis my doing. I am incapable of walking to the gates of the palace and asking for an audience. I requested that someone beg an audience on my behalf”
“Ah. I misinterpreted. I thought it a summons, not a response to a request.”
“I apologize for my reluctance to divulge all. If you choose to accompany me, you will learn all.”
“Little problem,” Lorsalian replied, “Such trust needs to be earned, after all.” He shrugged, and pondered for a moment, then added smirking, “I would ask, however. This message doesn't include the words "war" "death" or anything of a seditious nature, does it?”
Lilira looked at Lor solemnly, and Lorsalian's bright expression melted off his face. “I swear. It is nothing that I can determine will harm the isle,” she said. “There are those fanatics within the elven people that may see what I am doing as treason.
She gave a half-grin, “However as I am not a citizen of the isle, I care not what they think. I only want what is best for everyone. Faerun, Toril, as a whole, not just one part”
“I personally would say you are as much as they, although with your will your own,” Lorsalian replied with a shrug. “That is good to know, though. That look frightened me.” It was Lorsalian's turn to chuckle nervously.
“It concerns the health of Evermeet as well as Faerun.”
Lorsalian leaned forward as much as the tree allowed, and whispered, "The 'magic'?" to Lilira's silent nod.
He sighed loudly. “I too think it folly. A child holding a candle in one hand, and refined spirits in the other, beginning to pour.”
Only by the grace of the elven pantheon (or more, perhaps) had the creation of the isle – the last time the magic was used – resulted in a success rather than a destruction perhaps worse than what would have been had Auzorm'Tvorl not been defeated.
Lorsalian chuckled again, and shrugged, “This view again - even when I'm serious.”
Lilira pondered solemnly. “I should have listened closer to the tale spoken by the Oracle. The whole mess may be greater than it was indicated. All this is the reason for my.... nervousness,” she said quietly. Scanning the shadows at the base, she added, “And the reason for my - odd - companion.”
“You seem jumpy again,” he noted.
“Not jumpy - just watchful. The shadows move on occasion and silent footfalls have passed me unseen. I was once attacked by a creature and a figure stepped out of the shadows to slay it. Before returning to them. Hence my watchful gaze, and not panicked.”
“Ahh.. the delight of being a bard,” she grinned, “Feckless and nosy.”
He could only blink incredulously. “Hmm,” he pondered, “So many possible meanings. I'll not pry, since you seem unwilling, but you've raised more questions than answers. I will accompany you if you wish, and I think we're of a similar mind, but I'm no Seer. I can't say how I'll react to this.”
“Well,” he smiled, extending his hand to the sitting Lilira, “Seems we're waiting for a message, then, aren't we?”
She extended her own hand nervously, unsure. Lorsalian held his still, not advancing, nor pulling her to extend further.
Of course. That business with Teflor, he would conclude later. Lilira had followed one who had seemingly switched sides during the fight against the vile one, then switched again, and once more. Lorsalian had made no secret how he had felt of Teflor's actions. She must have really been wondering if she could trust me. I think I know how she felt, he would think,
After a moment of hesitation, Lilira leaned forward and placed her hand in Lorsalian's and felt the ranger balance himself before pulling her to her feet with a nod.