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Thread: Sienna's Tarokka Deck Reading

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    Default Sienna's Tarokka Deck Reading

    Sienna

    Sienna followed the alluring exotic sounds, until she came to a break in the trees where she saw the camp. There, the passionate vistana played their music. Their skin was olive, their hair thick with raven locks, their clothes functional but adorned with gaudy trinkets of jewelry. Men wore earrings in one ear and embroidered vests, and women wore brightly-colored scarves and flowing dresses. The ring of musicians was surrounded by a ring of wagons and beasts of burden. In the center of the fire, a lone vistani girl of great beauty danced fiercely with tambourine and bold grace.

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    No one noticed Sienna, until she heard two thumps behind her. Her open arrival had paid off. A vistani man had dropped out of a tree behind her, but when Sienna turned her head to see him, he was already smiling at her with a wide grin of pearly white teeth and beckoning intrigue in his large brown eyes, as he slipped his dagger away into its sheath. Another vistana - a boy not more than twelve years with a loaded crossbow, had also dropped out of a tree. He looked at Sienna with wary wonder.

    "Welcome, giorgio," the vistani man said. "I am Arturi," he introduced himself, bowing graciously. "I have not seen such a lady of immaculate beauty, ever in my travels, and we wanderers have seen all." He took a booted step closer. "Do not be afraid, giorgio, I will protect you and lead you." He offered Sienna his arm, meaning to lead her into the camp.

    "Why is it that you have come?" he asked, once he was close enough to admire Sienna's beauty in the firelight, unabashed. He was charmingly reaching for an arm.

    "Is she an elf?" the boy vistana suddenly asked. Arturi turned and with a sharp hissing snap gave the boy a quick gesture and spoke a word Sienna did not understand. The boy quickly obeyed and turned and began climbing back into the tree. Arturi turned back to Sienna and smiled wide.

    "You seek shelter for the night, no? Perhaps food and drink and watch the dancing of the prastonata?? Or barter and trade? Or perhaps, yes, perhaps you have come to have your fortune told by Madame Polushka, our raunie?. The Tarokka Deck tells all."
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

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    Sienna hesitated for only a brief moment before surrendering her arm to the Vistana guard. She appreciated his compliments, and the open admiration in his gaze, though she was always slightly wary of a flattering tongue, knowing well how flattery could be used as a deception. This time, however, the half-elf had little cause to believe such flattery was necessary as a ruse, since she was alone and the Vistana were many. May as well just kill her or rob her outright if they meant to do so. There was little she could do, save flee.

    "I must admit, the wonderful smells coming from you camp are what first caught my attention," Sienna confessed, smiling coyly at Arturi. "And I am famished. However, I find that I am most intrigued by the idea of having my fortune told. I hear that your people have a genuine talent for that art, and I have many questions in need of answers."
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

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    Sienna

    "Your wish, is my command, giorgio," said Arturi. "The raunie is in her vardo. Perhaps she has already foreseen your coming." Arturi wiggled his eyebrows, as if to sell Sienna on the mystery that surrounded the Vistana, even among the elves. As if she needed selling. Sienna had heard, in addition to her father's warnings, that the Vistana were forever cursed to wander, and had no home. But they alone could navigate The Mists, and one seeking to travel to a far away land could arrive there in a night's journey among the Vistana, for a sum of coin. "Come. Entari-vira."

    Taking her arm in his Arturi led Sienna through the camp to a brightly-colored wagon. Sienna could feel the eyes of many upon her, but the vistana were mostly occupied with the dance of the prastonata.

    "Lela is her name," Arturi said. "Soon, she will not be able to dance as such, for she is with child."

    "I will wait here for you," Arturi offered at the three cracked wooden steps leading up to the vardo door. He let go of her arm. When Sienna stepped upon the first step it creaked and bent under her weight, but did not break. The door replied, by opening. Though no one had opened it. From inside, there was the dim light of a candelabra. Sienna stepped inside upon the wagon's creaking floorboards.

    "Welcome, giorgio, be seated," came the rasping voice of an old crone, ominous yet promising intrigue. The inside of the wagon was cluttered with shelves lined with jars of bat wings and newt eyes and other things best left alone. The scent of incense made Sienna heady, like she was in a dream. Madame Polushka sat in a chair at a table draped in crimson cloth. The crone smiled toothlessly, her flesh so old like the flame of the candles had melted it such. Her trembling fingers barely concealed the bone under a thin stretched layer of flesh. She wore red and violet silk scarves about her head. From deep sunken eye sockets, gleaming, shrunken, all-seeing eyes danced in the reflection of the candlelight. A raven cawed, perched on a wooden spool in a corner. Sienna rustled into her seat opposite the Vistani woman. The chill draft of night ceased and the air became still as Sienna heard the vardo door clack shut behind her. The music outside was muffled, sounding distant.

    "Tell me, giorgio, what is it that you seek?" Madame Polushka wheezed. "Ask, and the Tarokka Deck will reveal all," she promised. "Things you wish to know. Things you do not wish to know. Even things, you were not meant to know. But for this, you must pay," she haggled, cackling slightly. "I do not demand a particular price. Pay as you will, and I shall read your fortune, as I will," she hinted. "But hear me. The more worthy the payment- the more precious to you it tis, the deeper into the cards I will delve, my pretty." Caw!
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

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    "the more precious to you it tis..."

    Sienna considered the woman's words carefully for a long moment. She had intended to pay in cold, hard coin, but it seemed that the Vistana raunie wanted something... more. The woman's small eyes seemed to bore into her skull, the weight of her anticipation hanging on the air.

    Sienna had many things of worth on her person, most of which she wasn't willing to part with, even for an accurate fortune that could lead her to her mother's kin. She did have one thing of worth that she was willing to give up, though it pained her to do so. It wasn't her most valued possession by far, but what did the old crone know of that? Surely what she had in mind was worth more than enough. In her own estimation, the value in gold alone should purchase a fortune that would lead her straight her nearest living human blood relation and prove her heritage all in one fell swoop.

    "Don't be alarmed," Sienna said, reaching for her belt and pulling a dagger, sheathe and all from the leather strap. Slowly, to show she had no foul intent, the half-elf presented the item to the raunie, hilt first.

    "It's cold iron. The workmanship is excellent, and the material is uncommon," she explained. Indeed, the workmanship was fine, down to the delicate vine pattern engraving on the blade.

    It was a gift... from my father," she added, almost as an afterthought.

    OOC:
    Sienna offers one of her MW cold iron dagger as payment.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  5. #5
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    Sienna

    The crone lifted both of her trembling hands, one gripping the dagger's hilt, the other its sheath. She drew the dagger, and the cold-forged iron gleamed orange-bronze and razor sharp in the light of the candelabra.

    "Behold!" she croaked like an old ghost. Caw! Sienna could hear the crone's breath rattle, as if her heart had picked up a pace quicker. Then the crone cackled.

    "You give such a blade, that which is the only thing that might save you from a horror in the night. Or in a crate. A forest, or a lake!" She cackled again, then admired the dagger. "Only a blade such as this, could kill a nymph of Valachan. And a father's gift." The Madame struggled to slip the dagger quaking in her weak grip back into its sheath.

    "Indeed, such is a worthy payment."

    Madame Polushka laid the sheathed dagger out of sight from Sienna, leaning deep under the table's cloth with back bones cracking. Sienna could still hear the fierce, passionate music faintly from outside the vardo. When the raunie straightened, she had lifted something wrapped in a crimson cloth and set it upon the table under the light of the flickering tapers.. Slowly she unfolded the cloth to reveal a wooden box with brass hinges, finely carved, decorated in a motif of ravens and wolves. She clicked upon the tiny clasp and opened the box's top, reaching inside. She pulled out an immaculate, but blood-stained, deck of cards, and placed them on the table. One by one, slowly, she laid out nine of them, face down, in a pattern the shape of a cross.

    "Into your past, and your future, we will see. Your friends and foes, who they might be. Bedbugs, or ballyhoo! You will learn, whoooo is who!"

    The raunie's voice become low and ominous.

    "But first, whoooo are you?" she asked, pointing a crooked finger in Sienna's direction, but seemingly at her heart.

    "Reveal," she instructed, her eyes boring into Sienna's, "the face of the center card! Your focus card, awaits."

    Caw!
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  6. #6
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    Sienna watched with a sinking feeling as the old crone made over the dagger. This had better be worth it, she thought grimly. At least she had the small comfort of knowing the the Vistana elder appreciated the true value of her payment. She also paid close attention to what the woman said about it's ability to slay a nymph. Her father had told her that cold iron was useful for defending against certain types of foes, but she could never remember his words clearly. She suddenly wished she had time to write this bit of information down.

    Time, however, was moving as Sienna was thinking. The raunie had stashed the dagger and brought forth an old, yet almost pristine deck of cards. The only thing marring the deck was an rusty stain. Was that... blood? Sienna swallowed and licked her lips, telling herself to stop imagining things.

    The half-elf watched as the crone slowly made a pattern on the table. The hair on the back of her neck stood more on end with each soft whoosh as the card went down, one by one. When the last card was laid, the woman turned her piercing gaze on Sienna, pointing a bony finger at her breast. The raven perched nearby punctuated the crone's command with a loud "caw!"

    Sienna reached for the card indicated by the Vistana elder, her hand trembling slightly, despite her best efforts to keep it steady. Taking the card between her first two fingers, she gently, but quickly flipped it over.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  7. #7
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    Sienna

    Sienna saw a face. The figure stared outward, eyes closed, indicating something unseen or hidden. The face was masked and each eyehole decorated with three glyphs. A larger glyph marked the forehead of the mask.

    FOCUS CARD: SEVEN OF GLYPHS, THE CHARLATAN
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    Madame Polushka purred with a low hum, as if amused. It might have been tinged with anticipation, Sienna was not sure. The only thing she was sure of was the mucus rattling in the old crone's lungs.

    "Who is who, indeed! It appears, my dear, even you do not know who you are."

    Caw!

    "But much is revealed. You are of the blood of the charlatan, my pretty...malevolence lurks where none is expected. Tis the card of spies and tricksters. It warns caution for others, if they believe in you."

    When Sienna finally looked up from the card at Madame Polushka, the raunie's eyes were averted downward at her side, where she had laid the cold iron dagger crafted masterfully by the elves of Sithicus.

    "Yet, you believe in me?" she said half-teasing, before an ominous tone reigned. "A wise choice, if it was a choice." Her eyes darted back to Sienna. No one had offered such a prize as payment for a Tarokka reading to Madame Polushka in many moons.

    "The card also reveals a need for you to watch carefully, and understand the motivations of others, lest you forget...especially those you might take for granted or those who go generally unnoticed. Perhaps you suffer from a lapse of memory. And woe!...to those who take you for granted, or not notice your coming...." she cackled. Even Madame Polushka seemed intrigued.

    "Let us delve deeper into your past, and perhaps, you will of yourself, learn something more you do not know, nor I..."

    The raunie pointed to the card lying face down underneath The Charlatan...

    "...until the card of your past is revealed."

    OOC
    I swear by Odin's beard I don't fudge this stuff.
    Give me a reaction post and turn the next card Michelle!
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

  8. #8
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    The smooth, featureless mask on the face was unnerving. The card seemed to hide more than it revealed. The fine hair on Sienna's arms had joined the hair on the back of her neck in standing at attention. Madame Polushka was certainly right about her memory. Sienna hoped she could recall everything the crone said later. She repeated the words in her head, hoping to forge a stronger memory.

    "Blood of the charlatan," Sienna murmured as she reached out for the next card. It certainly sounded interesting and would explain why her father had always been so tight lipped about her mother.

    Watch carefully, understand motivations, the half-elf mouthed the words silently as she flipped over the next card. Somewhere on the inside, Sienna's human blood was stirring and a vague sense of satisfaction tickled her brain. Yes, she thought, woe to those who take me for granted...
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

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    Sienna

    Long fingernails turned over the second card.

    A smiling young woman dressed in the clothes of a dandy brushed past a scowling rotund merchant dressed in rich, but food-stained clothing. One of the merchant's many sashes dangled, obviously cut, and the mischievous rogue had a fat purse in one hand, while her other hand was flipping a gold coin into a beggar's bowl on the street. A small black rat watched the exchange.

    PAST: ACE OF COINS, THE SWASHBUCKLER
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    "I see your mother. Your mother stole from the rich, and gave succor to the poor," Madame Polushka said low, her eyes drifting into the back of her head leaving bloodshot milky white orbs staring blankly. "She sought money, but not out of greed, but as a means to help others. She disregards the law of possession in the face of other's needs."

    Slowly, the raunie's eyes returned to the world of the living, and she leaned in, examining closely the gold coin on the card that fell through the air from the woman's hand. Suddenly Madame Polushka's eyes widened slightly.

    "A gold...nightshade. The coin of Borca. The card is the ace of coins, revealing nobility. Your mother was a noble of Borca, most likely of House Boritsi or Dilisnya, for these are the richest families of the realm, and always at odds. The human blood of one of these family lines runs through your veins...half-elven." Sienna noticed a glance Madame Polushka had made at her pointed ears. Until now, perhaps the Vistani had taken her for an elf, Sienna could not be sure. Sienna could do nothing but hold her breath. It was the way the raunie was now staring at her.

    "The bloodline of each of these families, is forever cursed!!" she blurted loudly in dire warning.

    Caw! Caw!

    "But your mother was good of heart. It is no wonder, then, that you do not know who you are. Whoever she is, she operated in secret from her siblings. Many talents, you two share."

    Madame Polushka looked back at Sienna's focus card, The Charlatan. When she spoke again, her tone was flat, as deadpan as her stare had been.

    "But in...other ways...you are not at all like your mother."

    Caw!

    The seer's eyes drifted to yet another card underneath the Ace of Coins, unrevealed.

    "We can delve deeper into your family's history. Whether it be your elven blood or your human blood, even the wisest cannot tell...until the card is revealed..."

    "I shall warn you dear," the raunie said abruptly, just as Sienna's muscles twitched to lift her arm, causing her pause.

    "If you are truly of Boritsi or Dilisnya blood, you may not like what you find. Proceed, at your own risk..."
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

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    Sienna was well and truly shaken, though she tried not to show it. A noble? A good-hearted mother? Then why the secrecy from her father? Maybe it was this curse the crone was warning her about. Sienna shuddered involuntarily, yet she reached for the next card without hesitation, curiosity a stronger lure than fear was a deterrent.
    The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."

    I will, Darvig uttered.

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