[spoiler]Another story about Skye’s search for Errol. Considering the length of this one, I will post one of her memories separately. I’m posting this a lot later than I initially wanted to, so had to rush my writing a little just so that I can get some progress going... that being said, criticisms are definitely welcome.
Just a story and not open for roleplaying, though I hope to host one soon.[/spoiler]
Skye arrived at Kleinton just before nightfall. The forest was so dense in that area and the little town so well hidden that she had been traveling a few days longer than she anticipated. Relief swept through her at the sight of the place. It was rather primitive compared to the rest of Offtopic, and would make one think of a medieval village. Then she saw a sign hanging from a particular building, reading: The Silver Stag Inn. With a tired sigh she approached the door and walked through. She entered a large room which was lit with candles and lanterns and complete with tables and chairs. Men and women sat comfortably with food and drink set before them. However, contrary to how she remembered them in her last visit, none of them appeared to be enjoying themselves. A few of them turned from their food to watch her wearily. Confusion rose within her, then a flash of red and green caught her eye from nearby. The auburn-haired, green-clad barmaid, Cara McEwan, approached with her head down as she wiped her hands on her apron.
“‘ello, welcome ta the Silver Stag Inn! If ye will take a seat I can—” when she looked up, she stopped herself, and her friendly demeanor quickly vanished. “Oh, no, not [i]ye[/i] again, bodach!”
Skye took off her helmet to reveal a nervous smile. “Hey, Cara! You’re exactly the person I wanted to see! It’s Skye, by the way.”
Cara stared at Skye before she began to shove her back out the door. The pressure nearly made the archer drop her helmet.
“Get out,” the barmaid ordered, her tone almost urgent, “I don’ want any o’ the trouble ye bring with ye! Get out!”
Skye reached for the doorframe to hold herself steady. “No, wait! I said I was really sorry about the wall. Besides, it looks like you got it fixed! I’m surprised you still even remember what happened!”
“I remember [i]everythin[/i]’ tha’ happens here, and tha’ is not even the reason why ye aren’t welcome! Out!”
One final push finally sent Skye stumbling completely out of the building. That comment caused her to lose her focus for a moment as she wondered what was meant by it. She snapped back into reality when Cara turned to leave.
“No, Cara, wait! I need to talk to you. It’s… it’s very important. I’ll even leave right after, and you won’t have to see me ever again. Please!”
Cara looked over her shoulder at her and back into the inn before she shut the door. Then she peered around the corner of the building to be sure no one would be listening. She stood in front of Skye with her arms crossed.
“All right, wha’ is it?”
Despite her question, with the expectant tone in her voice Skye couldn’t help but feel she already knew something.
“I’m looking for someone. The last I heard, he was heading toward the Capital before turning back. But it’s possible that he came through here, and I was wondering if you might have seen him. He is tall, wears a grey—”
Cara quickly cut her off. “He’s not here,” she said flatly.
Skye was taken aback. “He… what?”
“Errol; he’s not here. He came lookin’ fer ye, and then he left. I never told him where ye went.”
“D-do you know where he went?”
The barmaid hesitated. “Enough has happened here because of the lot o’ ye. If ye have any decency in ye, leave! I don’ want my town ta be put in any more danger because he knows ye were here.”
Dread crawled up Skye’s spine in a chill. “Any more danger? Did he do something? What did he do?”
“I’ve seen him and told ye he isn’t here anymore. Aren’t ye satisfied? Just [i]leave[/i]!”
Silence suddenly fell over the two young women, and neither one of them moved. Skye realized that Cara’s countenance had completely changed. Her words were laced with urgency, her crossed arms had adjusted to a comforting self-embrace, and her eyes had grown wide. She was just as afraid as Skye was, and that made the archer drop her face into her hands in shame. The guilt that she had been struggling with ever since her memories returned to her came flooding back. It was no wonder, then, why the people seemed so cautious of her and Cara wanted her out.
At last Cara spoke, barely above a whisper. “How can ye be friends with someone like him?”
“We used to be more like siblings,” Skye replied honestly, lowering her hands. “He was… better; more kind; more sound. Then I… I messed up. He became angry, and people are getting hurt. But that’s why I came here, so that I can find him and stop him. If you know anything about where he went, Cara, I need to know.”
The red-haired one glanced down at her feet in thought. “West. He came here about a week ago, then went further west, towards the sea. I don’ know why or where specifically.”
Skye nodded. “Thank you... that at least gives me a direction. I should get going, now. Have a good night.”
Before she could turn away, Cara stepped forward.
“Wait,” she said with a sigh, “I’m sorry fer tryin’ ta push ye out. Ye can stay here fer the night if ye want ta.”
“Oh, no, it’s all right, I understand. I’ll be fine out in the woods.”
“If ye are ta face him, ye will need some good rest. Ye will get tha’ better here than in the woods.”
“I... I would really appreciate an actual bed to sleep on. And I’ve got the money to pay for it, this time!”
“Ye don’ need ta pay fer it. Just promise me ye will stop tha’ man.”
Skye paused. “I’ll do everything I can.”
With that, Cara nodded and moved to enter the inn once again. Skye followed her inside, and after a satisfying meal she retreated to her room. It was quite simple, fit with a bed, a window and a desk, but for someone passing through it was perfect.
Errol was heading west. That bit of information may have been very vague to some, but upon looking at a map, Skye was closing in on him. Eventually he would trap himself between her and the sea, and her search would be far easier.
She had settled herself beneath the covers of her bed when a question came to her. It was one she had asked before, but it wasn’t until that minute as the moon filtered through her window that she began to ponder it. Why further west? He had proof that she was near the Capital; he knew she spent time at Blaze’s bar before, and though Cara hadn’t told him where she went, he knew she was there at some point. It was impossible for him to know for certain that she would be pursuing him. If anything, he would most likely be expecting her to be running away. Why would he go in the complete opposite direction? He wasn’t one to abandon a plan without a good reason. Whatever his goal was, she had to find out as soon as possible.