((Sorry! I got a nasty case of the stomach flu, todays the firs day I've actualy gotten out of bed))
Rings stood up quickly, a goofy smile crowding his face as he practicaly sipped towards Tholme. He stopped in front of her and a completly faked look of hurt crossed his features "That's not a proper greating for a long time friend" Tholme just raised an eye brow and crossed her arms. "Sense when have i been the touchy feely type?"
She broshed passed him and sat herself in one of the high backed wooden chairs he had around the room. "As you can see I'm back" Rings face once again lit into a smile at this, something akine to a hopeful look entering his eyes "Want back on again?" He asked, praticaly bouncing.
Years before, when Tholme had saved him, she'd also helped him overtrow the previous rag-Market lord, placing Rings on the top. In her opinion, it was a win win situation, because Rings would do anything for his 'friend' and she'd be able to have a semblence of control over the rag-market, where she could try to make things easier for the people living there, unlik the last lord.
"No Rings" She said "I'm on another mission, and I need some eyes and ears" AS she said this she looked at Miriam, who had followd her silenly up until this point. She knew the girl must be frantic at her for revealing this to Rings, who she knew she wouldn't trust. "I'm trying to get the new position opened by the king, to get more information." She looked back to Rings "And I can't stay long, we have to get back to the trials."
Rings nodded, looking worried, and serious for the first time sense they'd arived. "Do be careful Tholme, I'll let you know the happenings through the fountain." He held out his hand to her, which she took, bringing it to her heart, before extending hers to his. She then released, and walked out of the room, back down the winding passageways they'd come through before. As they left she saw Rings cast a curious look at Miriam.
(( Bump ))
((I'll respond in a moment, sorry for disappearing.))
Mir shot a glare at Rings before walking out after Tholme, carefully retracting her steps to avoid pitfalls and the booby traps that littered the hall ways.
They both entered the bar and left. Miriam walked silently beside Tholme, arms crossed on her chest her eyes glancing around,
"We have to hurry or we'll be late." She said, she picked her pace up a jog, not even looking back at Tholme. Mir knew her friend would catch up easily. She glanced at the sky, they definently ha dto get back, if they were late they risked looking bad in the King's and the trial master's eyes and probably also risked being disqualified.
Tholme shook her head in amusment, picking up her pace to keep up with the slightly shorter girl. Miriam confused her sometimes. Tholme could never quite tell what she was thinking most of the times, disregarding the few, sparce ocasion she actualy showed what she was feeling. And she wondered at her determination in this task, for it was usualy Tholme who woud try with no regrets. "You can slow down you know" she murmered, placing a hand slightly on Miriam's shoulder. "The castle and the king aren't going anywhere and neither are we. We'll win, dont worry" And though she said this to quench any worries Miriam could have had, she meant ever word. They were going to win this, regardless of what she had to do.
Mir nodded. She was still worried though it wasn't about if they would win. She was sure they'd win, they had the advantage after all, they were desperate and determined enough to doo anything and she was willing to bet they had the best 'training' and expeirence out of all their fellow testers.
Mir was worried about getting caught. She was afraid she'd be recognized and her secrets exposed to the world. She knew getting ecognized would at least jepordize the mission and probably destrot it entirely along with destroying Tholme's trust. Mir didn't even want to know how Tholme would react if she found out.
"Yes I know we'll do fine." she muttered knowing she was a bit snappish. "What do you think the next trial test will be?" Mir asked to cover for her snappy response.
Tholme sighed and removed her hand. It was not that she wanted Miriam to open up to her, because as far as Tholme was concerned she didn't need anyone. But Tholme couldn't help but wonder at that things Miriam must have experienced in her past to have ended up where she was when Tholme had found her. "I don't know what the next tests will be" she said, glancing at the sun barely visible in the sky. "But judging by the time I'd asume they'll be starting soon." She picked up her pace slightly, finally sharing Miriams feelings to return to the castle as quickly as possible.
Mir led the way back through the back alleys of teh castle through the halls and into the training arena. They were the first back but Mir could hear the other coming in behind them.
Mir went and stood where they'd stood before, her arms crossed on her chest, she looked around still carefully avoiding staring fully at the king. SHe watched the others file in, some rushing in some stumbling in like they'd gone to a bar adn drank on break. Mir studied the competition again some people hadn't returned. Either they'd been cut, they'd quit, or they were too late.
((What trial is next? DO you want to continue with adn to hand? (Maybe pit partners against each ither or we could save that for a ruthlessness test...
Or we could move on to the next set of trials.))
(Partners against partners would make an excelent ruthlesness test...we should probably move onto the next set of trials and then probably call that day of trials to an end perhapse?))
They entered the training area and Tholme followed Miriam to where they had stood at the last trials, near the round table filled with weapons. She glanced up at the king and found him staring back at her and Miriam. She quickly lowered her eyes and bowed in fake respect, her anger from before returning full force. She stood and turned around, forcing her body to relax and not stiffen in her anger. "Don't turn around" she murmered to Miriam, casting her eyes to the side "The king is watching us"
((So we'll move on too the Agility tests then...starting with speed.))
"We'll be testing your speed now...we'll test it for various things though we won't be able to do too much mor etonight. We'll start with a mile adn a two mile test. THen you will eat and go to bed at the assinged quarters you have here." he explained
"Tomorrow we'll test long distance." he added.
"Come with me." adn heled the group or testers outside,
"You will do one lap on the outside of the castle, that is one mile, you will start here. We'll send you in group." the trial master explained.
Mir stood quietly next to Tholme, though she was already bouncing on he rtoes, warming up before the run,
"The king as decided the ladies will go last." he added. Adn then the trial master went on to list of people, two groups or two went at a time.
"GO!" the trial master yelled to the firt group.
Tholme watched the first group disapear around the wall of the castle and she turned to Miriam, "Sprint it" She said, her voice leaving no room for argument. "We've got the enderence, and they want speed, so sprint it." After a few minutes the group could be seen rounding the corner and the man running the trials raised his hand, bringing it down hard, signaling for them to take off. Tholme burst forward, running on the tips of her toes, almost flying across the ground. She saw Miriam running beside her easily keeping up in the begining. "Race you!" She said, smiling and putting on a burst of speed, remember just that morning when they'd done this very thing.
Mir gave Tholme a crooked attempt at a smile and she pushe dher speed harder. Teh castle of round and easy to run around. THey'd been off roading this morning and Mir had been going fast she was practicly flying now. Mir wasn't the strngest person, she couldn't lift endless weights, her fighting style usaully involved her enviroment she'd never be abel to win a straight up knock down drag out fight. But Mir was fast. She pushed ahead of Tholme pushing forward, barely touching the ground,
"Gonna whoop you." she said through gasps as she whipped around the castle.
Tholme felt a laugh bubble up from her chest as she fought to keep up with Miriam, knowing there was no way she'd beat her. The other contestants were keeping it easy for the begining of the race, and many were far behind them, only now starting to catch up. Some had used the same tactic as them however, running it full out at top speed. A few were up with Miriam and her, but by the time they finished the lap around the castled they'd left them behind, Miriam winning of course.
They slowed down when the finished, and Tholme bent in half, stretching to the ground, and smiling, breathing deeply before standing. "you were flying out there" She said with a chuckle "I should start calling you little bird!" She nudged Miriams shoulder with her own in a teasing mannor before walking up to the training director for the directions of the next race.
Mir gave another crooked smile, a better one this time and nodded. She rested her hadns on her knees as she caught her breath and then joined her friend by the trial master.
"Next we'll do the two mile, it will be two laps. The ladies will be in the last group." The man said, he jerked his hand sending the first group off. Miriam bounced on her toes preparing for another run, her brearhing had already calmed form the last one she knew she'd probably not slow to much for this one, two miles wans't anything for her.
The trial master gave the signal and Mir took off glancing to see Tholme near her,
"Ready to lose again." she teased nudging her friend's shoulder before pushing past her.
((Hey could read some of my work? I'll return the favor if you do.))
((Oh yeah sure! :] I don't have anything new on my account though, so be warned!))
"You bet!" Tholme said, grinning and taking off. The other contestants were giving them weird looks at this point, because they were all competing against one another, yet Tholme and Miriam were acting like this was natural, almost like a game. And they were two slim, young girls to boot, both on the shorter side. One or twice while running the next two laps Tholme would catch the eye of one of the other contestants and flash them a grin, not because she liked them, because anyone who wanted to work for the king willingly was no friend of hers, but because it unsettled them. Anything for an advantage she thought, somewhat bitterly. She didn't think she'd ever smiled this much, be it for show or not.
By the time the race finished, Miriam was of cource, in first and Tholme herself had placed 5th. She was fast, but not that fast. And her enderence made up for any amount of speed she may have lacked. Slightly out of breath Tholme jogged up to Miriam after the race "Show off" she teased lightly. There was something about her somewhat silent companion that make Tholme feel like talking. Like joking. Like acting like a human being who actualy cared for something other than fighting and death. And though she wasn't used to the feeling, she kind of liked it.
((Anything imparticular you want me to read?))
Miriam, who still ha dthe adrenline adn rush of running racing through her veins smiled back at Tholme,
"Yeah well somebody has to make us look good." she teased back. The trial master looked at them like theyw ere crazy and shook hsi head as the last people crossed the line. Immiedetly the last wto people were emlinated becuase of bad times. Everyone else was led back to the training hall.
"You will be sleeping here. Girls on the left side men on the right!" The trials master said. Miriam noted how he called them girls and the guys men. He didn't seem to have much confidence they'd succeed, he seeme dto think even after theri performances that they were weak little children.
"You will be given bedrolls" the man continued, "And the cook wil bring you food. If it isn't enough you can risk going into town, but I will not tell you when the next set of trial will begin, if you're late you will be disqualified!" the trial master explained.
Miriam leane dinto Tholme,
"If the food ain't enough I can get us some more for free without risking disqualifaction, don't ask me how though." she muttered. She doubted the ration would be too little, it might be too little for the men but Tholme adn Mir had smaller stomachs adn would eat a lot less then the men adn needed a lot less, plus they were used to surviving on small rations.
Tholme laughed slightly at Miriams sneakyness, wondering exactly how familier her companion was with the castle, and the people in it. "We should be fine in regards to food" She said, remembering her bag, which she grbbed from the ground near the weapons table. "But i want to get a good place to sleep tonight" If they weren't going to tell them when the next trials were, there was a chance they could be ambushed while they slept to determine their reaction in unexpected situations. Already many of the men and some of the woman competitors were leaving the room, most likley heading towards the kitchen, or a nearby tavern to find something to drink.
Tholme surveyed the room and noticed a place on the other side, against the crumbling stone wall of the arena. "Let's go over there, the only way someone could get to us was to come across the field" She grinned a little, glancing sideways at Miriam slyly "Unless you know somewhere else to spend the night little bird"
((And anything or nothing, it doesn't matter that much to me. Most everything I have up are poems from a course I took in 8th grade, so "What he hid, his strength", "What is love" and "Broken but not shattered" are probably the only ones I'd recomend even concidering reading. But you can read one or none or all, I don't really mind))
"We have to stay in the training room so..." Mir thought for af ew moments, the only time she'd spent in the training room was cleaning it so she didn't know it was well as the castle,
"The spot you picked is teh best spot unless you want to sleep in the rafter loft." she said, nodding her head upwards towards an odd looking bit of cieling,
"I don't know how stable it is up there anymore though." she added. She shrugged.
Mir agreed with Tholme they shoudl get something to eta and get to sleep so they would be ready for whatever was too come.