Calypso didn’t feel it, necessarily. She watched as he spoke the spell, and she saw the figure reached toward her when it appeared. But after that, it was as if nothing was happening. For a moment, she believed that to be the case, but then she reminded herself that she knew better. Magic was tricky, but warlock’s didn’t so much as conjure an apple without reason. She didn’t feel it, but she could now sense her change. None of the other knights were left to notice, but a young handmaiden had been watching, and Calypso noted that her expression had changed from curious and doubting to a sort of awed admiration. She had no idea what she looked like now, but a small voice in the back of her head prayed that she was beautiful by the usual standards. And then she realized something, and her now hopefully beautiful face fell.
“Sir Wa- Sir Ahorld,” She paused, noting the considerably different voice that spilled from her lips. Her voice prior had been a run of the mill, common man’s accent, but this one… it was pretty. However, she found it difficult to say the vowel before the ‘h’, which made her voice now… exotic wasn’t the right term, but foreign wasn’t complimentary enough. Then she remembered she had spoke. “Sir Ahorld, the knight you spoke to before they left, won’t recognize me. I may not be welcome into the camp unless I have some way to prove that it is indeed me.” She wasn’t necessarily asking a question, and she wasn’t entirely sure of her statement, but her brow furrowed slightly in worry. She didn’t know where his help ended, whether he was only supposed to grant her one favor-wish or not. Was she entitled to as much help from him as she wished for?
Daemus had done what he had come to do. The spell completed he felt a sense of relief flood his body as the energy of the goddess engulfed him. The dragonic energy was potent and it filled his form. He slowly rose to his full height and then stood next to her. She had asked him a question, or maybe it was more of a statement of fact.
“Sir Ahorld, the knight you spoke to before they left, won’t recognize me. I may not be welcome into the camp unless I have some way to prove that it is indeed me.”
Tapping lightly with his forefinger against her head, ” Well then. You shall have to use this. Your wit and mind to do what the magic has changed. To prove whom you really are to him. He will know who you are once you do. The magic changed your form but not who you are. For those that can truly see they will know you for who you are. If he has a pure heart, he will know. ”
With that said he said his goodbyes and turned and left the small set of trees.
” Goodbye and Good luck my dear. May the creator shelter you. ”
and with that he was gone. he was walking down the road one moment.. the next he had disappeared.
Calypso yelled for him to wait, but he was already gone. How was she going to prove who she was to a man whom she’d known for less than a day? More importantly, why did it matter? She could easily just sneak into the camp as a servant again. It wouldn’t be that hard. But she had this block in the back of her mind that said no. You will be honest, Calypso… Honest. At least, honest to Sir Wayne. And Estelle, definitely Estelle. Perhaps no one else would need to know.
Speaking of Estelle. Calypso re-entered the camp, marveling at how well she blended in now. Luckily, she was still wearing the dress the handmaiden had lent her. Perhaps the angel would recognize it and know. Perhaps and hopefully.
The changed angel entered Sir Wayne’s tent once more, new blue eyes really taking in the comforting atmosphere for the first time. “Estelle? Are you here?” The voice was so different. Pretty, even. She liked it. It kept her unique, made her still stand out, but not quite so shockingly. It was funny. Make a tired old woman pretty and she suddenly became a teenaged girl again.
The training grounds were of course a hive of activity, with many dismantling the tents and getting the carts ready to take as many of the Knight’s belongings, weapons and servants with them. When Calypso entered the tent, Estelle was madly packing up the bedding and furs, into bags and boxes. She looked frazzled to say the least and jumped every time she heard the blast of the horns.
“Not enough time…not enough time.” The maiden muttered to herself. Her long tresses were awry and her face flushed from the stress and worry. Just then she heard an unfamiliar voice. “Estelle? Are you here?” Blinking at the sound, Estelle turned sharply, whilst folding a quilt. “Still here…just. What can I do for you? Has your knight not yet passed through? I am expecting mine any minute. Him and Sir Reginald. Oh…why did the King have to call for war?”
Estelle was fussing, as would be expected. Her faith and loyalty to Sir Wayne were unmatched by many hand maidens. But then she looked at the beautiful maiden again….and recognized the dress. She stopped dead, and then as her face creased with confusion, she asked. “Where did you get that dress?”
Calypso politely waited for Estelle to notice the dress, a calm expression on her face. When the other angel did, she spoke evenly and calmly, so as not to alarm her further. She felt sympathy for Estelle’s hurriedness and confusion. Definitely sympathy, not pity. She found that she was too fond of the woman to pity her. “I got it from you, at Sir Wayne’s suggestion. It’s me. Calypso. I’m not entirely sure how to explain, but that travelling magician that came through just today… well, I’m really not sure what happened, now that I think of it, but he… Oh, to hell with it, I’m free now. I can repay the good Knight Ahorld for the kindness he has shown me, and the generosity that I do not doubt he will continue to. And yours as well, and Sir Reginald’s, and everyone else’s.”
Calypso took a breath. She’d spoken all her words on one, and the end had been flustered and hurried in her new voice. It seemed her new exterior was also bringing on a new interior, a happier one. It was all she could do not to smile, but she managed to keep her calm, level expression as she continued. “What may I help with? I’m quite good at packing, I can’t even go into how much experience I’ve had doing so. Oh, do you think they’ll let me fight? I’m quite good at that too, unless it’s wolves. Good Lord, I hate the wolves. Their like big furry infants with an intense blood lust, it’s terrifying. What were we talking about? Oh, yes, packing, I can do packing, what do you need? I mean, what do the knights need? I mean…” Happier and younger, it would seem. The years taken off her physical form had seemed to take some off of her soul as well, and some of the burden of guilt. It had restored a younger angel to the name of Calypso, and she did not know if it was going to better at the moment.
Estelle at first was dumbfounded by what Calypso was revealing to her. The fur cushion she held in her hand slipped through her fingers, as she just stared at Calypso’s new appearance. Everything about her seemed years younger, from her complexion to her voice. Even the way she answered her so hurriedly, like she was in a great rush to get out everything that happened to her. It was indeed incredulous, and Estelle mumbled to herself as she tried to reign in her own thoughts and questions on this new predicament. Slowly, the hand maiden of Sir Wayne stepped closer to this new Calypso and reached for a lock of her hair, as though to feel it through her fingers might give credence to the truth. But her eyes implored Estelle that she was in fact speaking the truth. Releasing her hair, it fell through her fingers and she chewed on her bottom lip. This was probably the worst time to be springing something like this on the Knight. He was of course heading off to the battlements to fight against the evil armies of the House of Brax. Demons versus Angel kind and its allies. Outside the shouts of the other squires alerted Estelle the Knights were approaching, and the pace to pack up everything would increase ten fold. Estelle creased her brow, and then another blast of the horns and she near leapt out of her skin.
“What may I help with? I’m quite good at packing, I can’t even go into how much experience I’ve had doing so. Oh, do you think they’ll let me fight? I’m quite good at that too, unless it’s wolves. Good Lord, I hate the wolves. Their like big furry infants with an intense blood lust, it’s terrifying. What were we talking about? Oh, yes, packing, I can do packing, what do you need? I mean, what do the knights need? I mean…”
All this was said in a rush, as Estelle flew into a panic of packing again. She raised her head as Calypso went on and on about wanting to know what to do, how to help.
“Start by going outside and getting the weapons gathered ready for the cart, then when Sir Wayne arrives, I really think you should try to catch him and ask him yourself if you can go fight alongside him.” She then looked concerned and said.
“You are not going to be able to go to battle in that dress, I can tell you that much. Go through this crate.” She pointed at a large wooden box, that had been packed. “Find yourself something like pants and a tunic…possibly chain mail. A breast plate. Its a war out there, not a dance.”
Never a truer word was spoken.
The large procession from the castle of Knights and soldiers that were now readying themselves for way was slowly making its way through the camp, and you could see the squires rushing out to greet their Lords and Masters. Gerald was no different, and he came out as Sir Wayne and Sir Reginald approached.
“My Lords, we are nearly ready to take down the tent, and Estelle is working to pack the insides, so we can follow along behind.” His words were said in a hurry, knowing that time was now of the essence. Sir Wayne dismounted his horse, and walked the few steps to Gerald, placing his hand upon his shoulder. “I knew I could count on you and the others. Soon as you have the tents down, follow the soldiers, and when we reach the forests before the battlements, we set up camp. I fear this is going to be a long and drawn out war, but with God as our Champion, we cannot lose.” He said, speaking with a firm belief they were favored in this fight against evil.
Calypso nodded to Estelle, but refused to smile in such a dire situation. She changed hastily after finding a tunic blouse, some rather tight leather trousers, and a sturdy but bare breast plate (and unfortunately no mail), but still folded the dress nicely and packed it away, and then ran outside to start gathering the weapons as she had been told.
She stumbled on her feet slightly when she saw Sir Wayne, but continued with the duty she had been given. It would be selfish of her to abandon her task to ask him a question that she would ignore anyway if the answer did no benefit her, and on top of that shock him with her new appearance. She would need to ease into the request, and would need to have done whatever preparation she could before that.
Just as she was finishing up, she noticed a flash of light just a bit outside of the camp. After a few seconds, she decidedly ignored it, and, having gathered all the weapons she could find and given them to a squire that had asked for them, slowly approached her knight and savior. “Um, pardon me, Sir W-Ahorld.” Excellent start, stupid. “Forgive me for the timing, but… It is I, Calypso. The travelling warlock granted me my wish to serve unbound by my appearance, to repay my debt to you as best I can without limitations. It is unfortunate that I must ask more of you, but I only ask so that I may repay some of what you gave me without my requesting it. My request is that I be allowed to fight alongside you and your fellow knights. I may not be a knight of Casterly, but I know my ways with a sword, and even one sword could turn the tide, though I doubt it would be the one that is lent to me.” She tried to keep her speech as even as she had with Estelle, but there was a slight treble to her tone this time. She was nervous, and her new voice was showing it.
Just Outside the Training Grounds
“And the nerve of that man to leave before we arrive!” “Lucius, he IS the king.” “And you’re a half-blood of the two most useless races in exi- Forgive me, my Queen, I had forgotte-” “Lucius, could you please be quiet for a moment? You and Winona are giving the Queen a headache.”
Celandiam almost laughed at the young nobles she was guiding, but she kept her composure, albeit allowing a smile. “We will walk with the knights. Surely they will not deny Storwick Misreline’s son and an old friend among their ranks. However, Lady Karena and I will return to the castle to meet with Metia.” All three nodded, but a smile broke out on Winona’s face when she caught sight of a familiar head of white hair. “Lucius, throw some fire at the elf with the bow.” “And get myself shot? No.” “He won’t shoot you, it will just get his attention. Fire doesn’t alarm elves.” “You must be joking. Everything alarms your folk.” “Get off it, you’re wrong.” “Lucius, Winona, hush.”
Celandiam approached a younger knight, her kind smile still in tact. “Who is your leading knight, might I ask?” The knight seemed to know that she held some importance, even if he couldn’t quite place it. He gazed at her in awe for a moment, before eyeing her companions for a moment. Then he returned his eyes to her. “Sir Wayne Ahorld, the handsome fellow speaking with the- oh, that handmaiden is gorgeous… apologies, the one speaking to her. May I ask who seeks his audience?”
“I am Celandiam of the Free Elves. I do not wish to disturb his council with his handmaiden. When they have parted, I will request his audience again.” The knight’s jaw dropped and he made a sort of gurgling sound. The Queen of the Elves, Daughter of the Moon stood before him and he’d made a fool of himself over a pretty serving girl. Lucius and Winona bit back laughter, but Winona’s eyes were still trained on Reginald.
The procession of Knights and soldiers grew in size and number, till the vast army was now well back over the hill, and more were coming, as it made its way through and around the training grounds. This would be the last opportunity for many to meet up with their knights and Lords till reaching the battle fields at the edges of the Vaas lands that borders with that of the Night lands. Sir Wayne was giving his instructions to Gerald, when approached by the changed Calypso, who was dressed in the tunic, tight leather strides and breast plate, looking hopeful to join the Knights on their venture into war. At first Sir Wayne was puzzled by what Calypso was saying, for she looked nothing like the statuesque woman of White that he had left by the stream.
“Forgive me for the timing, but… It is I, Calypso. The travelling warlock granted me my wish to serve unbound by my appearance, to repay my debt to you as best I can without limitations. It is unfortunate that I must ask more of you, but I only ask so that I may repay some of what you gave me without my requesting it. My request is that I be allowed to fight alongside you and your fellow knights. I may not be a knight of Casterly, but I know my ways with a sword, and even one sword could turn the tide, though I doubt it would be the one that is lent to me.”
Even Sir Reginald pulled up and was listening to this, incredulous tale, and the courage of a woman that sought to take up arms and fight alongside the Knights of Casterly. Sir Wayne had no clue as to her training, if any. Had never seen her with a sword in her hand, and now of all times, she wished to join them. It took him a good minute to consider this, for after all it was not just her to think of, but all the others that would be fighting alongside them. Finally, he gave his answer, much to the surprise of Sir Reginald, who thought the Knight had lost all of his senses.
“It is not customary for a woman to join the ranks of Knighthood, but under the circumstances, what we fight for is the very freedom to be what and who we are. I shall allow you this request, on the privso you understand, that many will not return. To die in battle is the highest honor. Have Gerald get you a horse, and make sure you are well prepared. Then yes, you may join me.”
Estelle came out of the tent just at that moment, and was somewhat shocked to see what was taking place, but knew that there was no time for argument, and went about with her packing. Gerald too, looked at Calypso oddly, and went to find her a horse, as Sir Wayne waited patiently for her to be ready to join him on the march to the battlements.
Just Outside the Training Grounds
The Knight that had me with Celandian of the Free Elves had made his way over to Sir Wayne, when he concluded his talks with Calypso and bowed before asking. “Sir Arhold, the Queen of Elves, daughter of the Moon, wishes word with you.” This got Reginald’s attention and he looked behind him and saw Winona. He raised a sharp brow and then got down off his horse.“What the devil do they want?” He asked, looking concerned, that they would come down here and not be up at the Castle meeting with the Queen.
“Very well, I shall speak with her.” Sir Wayne said, leaving his horse with another squire and marching over in his suit of armor. Sir Reginald followed along, keen to hear what she had to say.
Calypso took in everything Sir Wayne said, resisting the urge to grin at him, She nodded her understanding when he had finished, and walked over to Estelle to help her continue the packing. When Gerald returned with the horse, she looked at him and nodded, a sort of half-smile of thanks blooming on her lips as she reached to take the reigns from him, while simultaneously tying up a bag.
She could not believe that Wayne had said yes. She had expected to simply remain with the other handmaidens, and act as a sort of last resort and guard. She almost regretted not being to take that position also, but then she observed the group of four that had appeared during the flash of light moments ago. She recognized the jet black hair and fought the urge to throw some profane words at Lucius, only just managing to hold her tongue as she continued to pack. She was wrapped up in the Misreline warlock’s presence that she didn’t notice the majestic elf beside him that began to speak.
Just Outside the Training Grounds
As Wayne and Reginald approached, Winona shot them a wide grin, which Karena noticed was both affectionate and excited. Lucius looked like he was about to say something, but at a look from the youngest member of the company, he remained quiet. While this all too casual exchange went on, a soft smile from the Queen of the Elves graced itself upon the Casterly knights. “Seeing as I would recognize Reginald on a raging battlefield, you must be Sir Wayne Ahorld. As I am sure your loyal knight has informed you, I am Celandiam of the Free Elves. Lady Johanna Jameson of Stormwind Keep has entrusted me with her daughter, young Lady Karena,” She gestured to the young, grey-winged angel, whose attention had returned to the white flower. “so that she might find peace and safety from an unknown enemy within her mother’s home kingdom. On our travels to these Plains, we caught word of the war that will soon wage between House Casterly and House Brax. Lucius Misreline, son of Storwick (who needs no further introduction), and Lady Winona Latuline of House Laegaess-” “Casterly. I was once a Hunter of Casterly, a title I never forfeited willingly.” “Hush up, will you, she’s trying to make it seem like you’ll actually be able to help.” “You watch your tongue, wizard, or you might not have it anymore.” “I don’t even understand why we are here. A Lady of Laegaess, a Lady of Shyhawks and Stormwind, the Queen of the Free bloody Elves, and the warlock that cannot be tied to any house that is myself? This is not our fight.”
Celandiam, with an interested look in her ever-mysterious eyes, tilted her head to the side as she watched her companions. Winona’s eyes were widened slightly in her glare at Lucius, and she took in a harsh but slow breath before she spoke to him in a tone that was much more serious than the banter she had shared with him prior, letting the words out of her mouth slowly. “It is our fight.”