09.03.3013: A Lady, a Lord and a Red Ball of Fur
Summary: Elodie invites Sammel to the Aquarium at Shelter, then she's called out to be a part of a rescue party. And Sammel is introduced to a Red Ball of Fur.
Date: 02 September 2013
Related: Related to the ones about the group of volunteers lost in the wilderness
Elodie Sammel 

Underwater Aquarium, Shelter, Niveus
The underwater aquarium, known as the Northern Lights, is the most popular attraction on Niveus. An entrance in the lowest level of Shelter leads the way down through hard-packed ice, which in some places has been chipped away to reveal the skeletons of whales and other creatures long extinct on the moon. Large staircases carved of ice and elaborate lifts of bronze and glass lead the way down under the ice.
The aquariums themselves are mainly formed of twisting labyrinths of tunnels deep under the water. Pathways lead through the tunnels, and benches provide space for those who wish to sit and watch for hours on end. In the center of the aquarium is a large open space covered by an enormous dome. This space is filled with a garden made of carved ice flowers and trees, and filled with yet more benches and a few tables. Two restaurants (one specializing in local cuisine and one serving classic dishes from all over Haven) as well as an upscale hotel can also be found here, attached to the aquarium, for those wishing to stay long periods of time.
03 September 3013

It has been a few days since the events at the cape, and Elodie has invited Sammel down to the Northern Lights. Here, under the sea and in the corridors serenely lit in wavering blues, there are no bolo news vids, trying to second guess whether disaster could have been averted, or giving updates. While his sister's plight might always be on his mind, at least he doesn't have to be outwardly reminded of it. In her simple blue walking dress, the lady doctor of Iah leads him by the hand, letting him be still or talk, as he wishes.

Looking around carefully as they walk, Sammel offers a quiet smile for now. Looking around the aquarium area, his expression might be a bit distant at the moment, but if that's because of his sister, or because of the view, or both, that's not easy to say. "It looks quite wonderful here," he offers, a bit quietly.

The advantage of having a member of the house as your guide is that you can have the place virtually to yourself. And they do. Smiling up at her handsome knight Elodie agrees. "It is. Maybe we'll hear sea singers this afternoon. Their songs can be equally joyful and haunting."

Sammel smiles as he hears that, "That sounds quite wonderful." A brief pause, before he adds, "Thanks for inviting me here, I think I needed a bit of a change of scenery now."

"It is wonderful. Sometimes people bring their toddlers here for walks in their strollers to soothe them to sleep if they won't nap," Elodie relates. Her fingers give a gentle, reassuring squeeze to his arm. "No news feeds or anything else to follow us down here. Unless we want."

Sammel smiles as he hears that, "I can imagine how it might soothe them to sleep," he offers, before he nods a bit, that squeeze to his arm making him relax a bit more now. "Had enough of the news feeds for a while now. All they do is make people more worried than before, or at least that's what it feels like."

"Or trying to place blame," Elodie adds sadly. Her head rests on his shoulder as she stares off across the ocean floor. Then she straightens and gives a little smile. "Speakers on," she commands. After a couple moments, a faint, drawn out wail can be heard.

"Yes, that as well. Why is it so important to place blame for everything all the time? That doesn't bring people back, you know…" Trailing off as he hears the sound on the speakers, looking out there as well, with a quiet smile as he listens now.

Elodie doesn't have an answer about the blame, so she doesn't interrupt the song. Sammel may start to see the darker blue shadow coalescing at the edge of the underwater lights that Elodie had spotted. There seems to be a long silence, and then the call is answered. Standing at his side, she rubs his back soothingly as they listen.

Remaining quiet for now, as he listens to the song, Sammel relaxes a bit more, unable to hold back a smile, both at the sound and at the back rub. Watching the shadow out there as well, he finally speaks, voice just a whisper. "What is that?"

"It sounds like a Glacier Singer," Elodie replies. "I heard a legend once that people long ago called them the record keepers. They kept the stories and passed them on. Maybe it comes from our tradition of telling stories."

Sammel nods a little bit as he hears that, "Quite nice creatures. I must say that when I only had seen the surface, I didn't think there were this many interesting creatures here…"

"Niveus has many hidden treasures that few are pro elegies enough to see," Elodie murmurs, a proud smile curving her lips as she watches the second Singer come into view. "Mostly because few persevere enough to find them. When your moon is blanketed with a layer of ice it's easy to dismiss."

"Perhaps that's how the creatures manage to still exist, that not too many people know about them, so nobody will come hunting for them or anything like that," Sammel replies, before he looks to the second Singer, and then back to Elodie, with a quiet smile. "It's peaceful down here as well. A good place when someone needs to think, or needs to stop thinking."

Since they have the place to themselves, and they've stopped walking, Elodie swings around in front of Sammel. She knows he can still easily see the oceans beyond, and the long, graceful sweeps of the animals as they draw closer over her head. Her arms slide around him, holding him comfortingly to let him think, or not think, as he desires.

Sliding his own arms around her now, Sammel looks out at the sea animals for a few moments longer. "I guess it would have been much harder if my sister wasn't just as tough a fighter as the rest of us," he remarks, a bit quietly now, offering a bit of a smile.

Elodie's cheek rest sideways against Sammel's chest, rubbing against it as she nods. "Sir Kassie is a very capable knight. And she doesn't seem to have a target painted on her armor's chest piece," she adds, giving a little squeeze when she injects a little humor. "If anyone can get through there, it would be your sister."

Suddenly starting to chuckle a little bit now, Sammel nods. "You know, if she knew I was this worried about her, you'd probably have to repair my broken nose, or something like that."

Elodie chuckles and looks up to Sammel. "You're secret is safe with me. I won't breathe a word to her when she gets back about you being worried." She pulls one of her hands from behind his back, and runs it lightly down his nose. "I like your nose the way it is. I wouldn't want it being broken if I can prevent it." Her smile is mischievous, as is the spark in her eyes that tries to hide her deep concern for him.

"Thank you," Sammel replies, with a grin, before he adds, "What would I do without you?" Sounding a bit more serious at the moment now, before he glances out into the sea again now. "Hopefully, we will not have to find out something like that again, right?"

Elodie shifts her arms back around Sammel and holds him closely. "Please The Six, no," she says fervently. "I don't ever want to be without you." She pauses, and takes a breath. Then she lets it out. Then she takes a breath again. "I do love you, Sammel."

Sammel nods as he hears the first part. "I don't ever want to be without you either." Then, as he hears her say she loves him, there's a wide smile, before he replies, "And I love you too, Elodie. The more I get to know you, the more I find myself falling in love with you."

Elodie's hold on Sammel relaxes, and she sighs out with a smile lighting her features. "I've been wondering," she says quietly, then turns to look up again. "I'm happy to hear you feel the same way."

Looking a bit relaxed now, Sammel offers a quiet smile. "I'm glad we both feel the same way." It's said a bit quiet again now.

The companionable silence of new love admitted is occasionally pierce by the wailing calls of the Glacier Singers, and then by an insistent beeping. Grimacing, as she really doesn't want to be interrupted, now, Elodie loosens herself away from Sammel just enough to answer her emergency beeper. "Lady Doctor Elodie," she responds.

Sammel pauses as he hears the beeping, looking a bit worried now. After all, such emergency things usually means trouble, right? But he keeps quiet, letting the conversation run its course.

"Lady Elodie, you requested to be sent with the medical team when word was heard from the volunteers at Cape Amran?" the voice comes over her comm.
Elodie draws a breath, looking up to Sammel. She lifts the comm, uncertain whether to set it to private, or let him hear. Her eyes ask him if he wants to hear, or if she should switch, the unit held halfway to her ear.

Raising an eyebrow momentarily as he hears that, Sammel's expression seems to suggest that he wouldn't mind hearing the conversation at the moment. There's also a bit of a smile, meant to be reassuring now.

"Yes," Elodie responds, leaving the comm open, tightening her arm around Sammel for a moment. "Do we have any news?"
"We do, Lady Elodie. An Awakened has been able to make contact, and know where they are going. A medical team is being assembled with a knight escort to meet them."
The doctor bites her lip as she considers, looking to Sammel again. "Do we know the condition of the volunteers?"

Sammel nods quietly as he listens, unable to hold back a bit of a smile at the fact that they at least know where the group is now. Aside from that, he keeps quiet for now, it would seem.

Elodie echoes Sammel's smile encouragingly as she waits for the call to go on. "They are wounded, but alive. The extent of the wounds is unknown at this time. We are planning on leaving as soon as the supplies can be gathered and the party assembled. It is not an area that is conducive to riding, so it will be on foot. Will you be able to keep the pace, Lady Elodie?"
The news of the wounded but alive brings a breath of relief that she didn't realize she'd been holding. "I will suit up and I can most certainly keep the pace, sir," she replies affirmatively. She waits for the usual instructions to pick up her destination and list of needed provisions from her computer mail and the call to sign off before she jumps up to throw her arms around her betrothed's neck. "They've been found!" she tells him gleefully. "Sir Kassie is all right, she'll be coming home. I'll see to it, I promise."

Sammel takes a few deep breaths now, unable to hold back a smile as he hears that, and as she throws her arms around his neck. "They've been found!" A brief pause, before he adds, "Make sure you both come back safely, my love," he offers, words spoken a bit quietly now.

"Now you're just getting greedy," Elodie tells him, feeling a little giddy between the relief from the news, and the joy at being called 'my love'. Before she realizes what she's doing, the overabundance of emotion expresses itself in a quick kiss before she lets herself back down to her two feet. "I will. I'll bring us both back," her eyes glow warmly with the promise.

"Maybe I am, but who could blame me, hmmm?" Sammel replies a bit lightly. As he's kissed, he waits until she's lowered herself, before he gives her a quick kiss in return. "One now, and more of them after you've done as promised," he says, with a bit of a chuckle now.

The whole kissing thing take a moment to sink in, and it's a good moment or two after Sammel offers his bargain, the Elodie catches up. Then she gives the front of his collar a little tug as she chuckles. "You sure know how to give a girl incentive," she tells him, then turns and takes his hand. "We should go. I'm sure your family has heard the news and you should be together. And I have to pack." Leaning slightly against him as she walks, she takes him back through the still populated sections of the aquarium, and up to the Ways of Shelter.

"I do my best," Sammel offers in return, before he nods a bit again, moving along with her now. "Be safe out there…" For once it's him that gets to say the words, and stay behind.

<Forward a littleā€¦>

The happy news of the volunteers being found, and well, heck… other bargains made, had pushed some other thoughts from Elodie's mind for the time being. It wasn't until they arrived at the Ways and she was about to say good bye, that she remembered the new ball of red fluff that's recently entered her life. "Oooh! Douley!" she exclaims, stopping in the middle of the Ways courtyard, her hold on Sammel's hand bringing him to a stop as well.

Sammel blinks a bit at the stop now. "Douley?" he asks, after a few brief moments of pause, before he adds, "Who's that?" Looking around for a few brief moments now, to see if that person called Douley is around there somewhere.

"My new kitten, I was going to introduce you later, after the aquarium…" Elodie trails off and starts leading him towards the lift to the family quarters instead. "Sir Kaedin gave him to me the other day, and he's been living in my quarters, and he sleeps with me every night." She grins up to him. "Sir Kaedin named him, and I decided not to confuse him by trying to change his name."

"Ah," Sammel replies after a few brief moments of pause, letting himself be led now. "And it's probably a good thing that you're not changing his name." Another brief pause, before he offers a smile, "What would you like me to do with him?"

Elodie waits until they are in the lift to answer, her eyes turning up to him again, this time with gratitude. "Would you mind taking care of him while I'm gone? Maybe introducing him to where his new home will be in a few weeks?" she requests, both of her hands coming to his as she faces him. "He doesn't like to sleep alone, so he will probably curl up next to you at night."

Sammel smiles as he hears that, "It will probably be good for both him and me to get to know each other, right?" A brief pause, and and another smile, "Of course I'll take care of him."

Elodie chuckles. "Yes, it would be a good idea. You can keep each other company while I'm gone, too." Her smile turns a little rueful as she thanks him, and she leans her forehead against his chest, still holding his hands.

Sammel smiles as he hears that. "Does he like beer, then?" he asks, a bit lightly, before he smiles, squeezing her hands a bit gently. "Time for me to meet my new friend, then."

Elodie chuckles, swaying against Sammel a bit, then straightening as the lift doors open and they step out into the family quarters. "Maybe if it's a creamier stout?" she offers, looking up to him with a wink, then they're walking down the hallway to her quarters. When the doors open, they are confronted by a regally sitting mini feline, fluffy red fur and green eyes that seem to demand who this new intruder to the domain of Douley happens to be. With another smile, Elodie lets go of Sammel so she can stoop down to scoop him, and turn back to introduce the two.

Sammel chuckles, "I'll keep that in mind," he replies, before he smiles as they enter the quarters, looking to the little feline now. "Ah, so this is Douley, he replies rather lightly.

The cat nuzzles against Elodie as he's picked up, then climbs onto her shoulder to turn around and survey Sammel. With a chuckle, Elodie nods. "This is Douley. He likes perching on shoulders, too. He will probably start to prefer yours because it's higher than mine," she surmises. Stepping closer to the knight, she turns her body a little to bring the cat on the shoulder closer to him. "Douley, say hi to Sammel. He's going to be taking care of you for a few days. And we'll all be living together soon."

Smiling as he sees the cat climbing onto her shoulder, offering a smile to the animal. "Hello, Douley. It's nice to finally meet you." Holding out his hand for the feline now.

The cat gives a sniff to Sammel's hand, then reaches out a paw… finally he stands on hind legs so that he can rest both front paws on Sammel, eyes now intent on the man's shoulder. The haunches lower a couple of times, then the red fluff ball makes the transition to the higher perch, turning around to curl against the side of Sammel's neck. Elodie grins, and reaches up to give him a scritch before she moves over to her library and gives verbal commands to the computer to print out her orders, then moves to her lockers to begin assembling her gear.

Sammel is unable to hold back a bit of a laugh as the cat makes his way over to his shoulder, moving one hand to gently pet the little ball of fur now. "I hope you approve of the perch, and I think we will be good friends, Douley." Gaze following Elodie now, as she starts assembling her gear.

There's little hesitation in Elodie's movements. She's used to assembling Search and Rescue, and all her motions are methodical as she checks her equipment and lays it out. Her bow is taken out, checked over, and the same with her quiver. She considers, then takes out a fighting axe and lays it alongside everything on a table that's obviously been used for this operation many times before. Once it's all set, she takes out a pack for the supplies that aren't attached to the armor or belt. She goes back, and pulls out the thin, under armor pants and shirt.
Douley's eyes join Sammel's following her movements, and he purrs soothingly underneath the man's ear. When the hand stops petting him, he'll head butt it, demanding more scritches.

There's a brief pause as Sammel looks to that axe for a few moments, before there's a brief nod. "Looks like things are ready," he offers, before laughing a bit at the cat's action. "Okay, so I'm turned into your personal scritch machine already, hmmm?" he offers to the feline, a bit lightly now.

Looking up, Elodie chuckles and nods. "Well, of course," she tells him. "Cats are equal opportunity scritch receivers." She nods to his assessment and disappears into her wash room to change into her under armor clothes. She comes out and puts on her skin suit, and then begins to put on her armor. "It looks like we'll be going into the mountains in Khar-Mordune. A lot of walking, and it might get tight. Ronan's been teaching me to use some weapons in case things get close."

Sammel chuckles as he hears the part about the cats, and keeps on giving some scritches to the furry little thing. Nodding a bit to the part about using weapons when things get close. "Always a good thing. That's when I'm glad I can use the spike on the poleaxe," he offers, with a quiet smile now. "Your brother's a good teacher, I hope?"

Elodie chuckles to Sammel, and nods. "Ronan is a very good teacher. He wanted to make sure I would take him seriously, and not try and goof around just because he's my little brother." She pulls her greaves onto her forearms, then pauses, and giving him a little grin, turns her arm over holding it in place so he can snap it closed. "Hopefully, though, I won't have to put his lessons to the test."

"Hopefully," Sammel replies, with a smile, before he smiles a little, still scritching the feline on his shoulder now. "I'm sure you'll do well out there. And then both Douley and I will be looking forward to when you come back." he adds. "Won't we?" he offers to the animal, a bit softly, before he moves to help with fastening the greave now.

Elodie smiles as Sammel helps, and then, without speaking, she starts holding things in place to let him fasten her in and get her ready, enjoying the closeness and kind of intimate feeling it takes on. "So I'll have two of my favorite boys waiting for me when I come home," she surmises, reaching up a hand to scritch at Douley as Sammel fastens her breastplate, as the kitten has been patient during the process.

Sammel smiles as he helps to fasten the equipment now, enjoying the same closeness. He pauses for a few moments as he hears what's being said, raising his eyebrows a bit lightly. "Two of your… You hear that, Douley? She's got other favorites than us?" It's said rather lightly, as he fastens the breastplate.

Elodie gives a little poke to Sammel's shoulder just under where the cat is sitting, but resists the urge to kiss him for his impudence. Just barely, but her look says it all about his teasing as she reaches for her leg pieces and kneels down to put them on. "As long as you're here when I get back… or I'll probably meet you in Phylon. See how Douley is settling in."

"Who knows, if I get to know it in time, I might decide to drop by Khar-Mordune when you return, if that's where you return to," Sammel replies with a grin, before he adds, but otherwise, it's always good to get to see how well Douley's settling in, I believe."

Elodie's eyes brighten at the idea. "That would be wonderful," she tells Sammel, then she puts her hands flat on her chest, all armored up except for the helmet and ready to go. "The sooner I get to see you again, the better," she admits quietly. Then she takes a breath and turns to the table to pick up her pack, bow, quiver… the axe being holstered at her belt. "Time to be on my way, then."

Sammel nods as he hears that, offering a smile now. "I'll miss you while you're gone," he offers, before he adds, "Be safe out there…"

Elodie nods towards her door, leading him back towards the ways. "Staying safe is the number one rule in Search and Rescue," she informs Sammel with a bright grin. Once in the lift, she reaches up to give the little red fuzzball his final petting before they step out and head to the Ways.

Sammel smiles as he hears that, making sure to keep the kitten safely on his shoulder, or in his arms, should he be permitted, as they move for the Ways now.

Despite the fact that he said she only gets the one kiss now, and more later when she keeps her promise, when they reach the ways, she stands up on tip toe to kiss him on the cheek. "Try not to get hurt while I'm gone," she instructs Sammel, then gives him a smile to move off towards the proper Waygate.

"Me? Get hurt without you there to patch me up?" Sammel replies with a grin, before he adds, "I'll be safe." Watching her head off to the Waygate, he remains watching until she leaves, before he looks to the cat again now. "Shall we head off then? So you can get to know Phylon a bit better."

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