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Assignment in the Archives

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Assignment in the Archives

Post  Penelope on Sun Nov 15, 2015 3:49 pm

A whoop of glee broke the dusty tranquility usually afforded to the patrons of Garundi Antiquities Library B. In response, the rasp of scratching quills desisted only long enough for those most studious inhabitants to throw disapproving glances toward the delinquent before returning to their work and ignoring her altogether.

From atop a twelve-foot ladder, the delinquent in question gingerly pulled a scroll tube from the sixth shelf and cradled it under her arm to join three others before hooking the insides of her her feet to the ladder's side rails and with one arm clutching her quarry and the other stabilizing her decent, sliding down to the marble floors with only the slightest click from the heels of her sandals.

"Sorry!" She whispered as she passed a second year hopeful who had been trying to work in peace; a man with a perpetually flushed complexion and watery blue eyes. He didn't make eye contact, but favored her with a nod of forgiveness.

Tables filled the space that was not reserved for scrolls or tomes, but only a few of those were currently occupied. It was the middle of the day and the venture-captains had their recruits busy doing whatever nominal chores they could find to keep the over-eager novices out of trouble.

She and one of her fellow first-year initiates were assigned by Venture-Captain Ambrus to the task of digging up any information they could find on a particular item of interest, slogging through thousands of old texts and scrolls to find the proverbial needle in a haystack, and then transcribing the information so it could be sent to the Pathfinder lodge that requested it.

Penny couldn't be happier.

Penelope Quink -- Penny to her friends, though she didn't have any of those here quite yet, was as enthusiastic about her path as any dreams-driven, starry-eyed thirteen year old girl could be! She was going to find a place here among the Pathfinders, make a name for herself, by golly, and one day, come hells or high seas, write her own stories for the Pathfinder Chronicles! But first. . .

The girl shuffled over to the table where her partner sat, being careful not to trip over her two-sizes-too-large, formless grey robe in the process.

"I think I found it, Colin," she gushed in as low a voice with which one could gush. Penny deposited the old scroll tubes on the table beside the stack of tomes he was scanning, and pushed one in particular between them before popping the cap. "I was starting to doubt that we'd find any information on these Eye Orb things. That was a good call on the Garundi wing!"

Pushing her spectacles back up to the bridge of her nose with her index finger, she took a moment to appraise the fellow while he wasn't looking. Six-foot, five-inches tall, he was pale -- just all over. Silvery blond hair fell past shoulders clad in identical (though appropriately fitting) grey robes and he boasted light blue eyes not the least bit watery, which were so clear and bright as to almost appear to be lit from within.

Penny found him a bit intimidating though she tried hard not to let it show, but it was not his physical presence so much as his demeanor. Colin Marcus was quiet, but not in a serene sort of way. Not in a dim sort of way either. No, he was the type that seemed aloof until you payed closer attention. He was watching. Weighing the voices and opinions of others and sometimes it seemed. . .even their worth, which only made her more nervous and more desirous of impressing him.

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Post  Colin Marcus on Sun Nov 15, 2015 7:57 pm

"Actual orbs this time?" The dhampir looked past her toward one of the other patrons glaring at his young partner. The young man's eyes went wide as he caught the dhampir's own glare and quickly went back to whatever research he had been assigned.

He rolled up a scroll he had been translating into common tongue. "The Osirini's had a lot of peculiar items that I haven't heard of elsewhere... This seemed close. A rod that would restore sight that was damaged... but it isn't an orb." His mouth twisted up in mild annoyance. Translating ancient Osirani was more art then skill. Several pictures held multiple translations. "The gem on the top could have been one I suppose... but it seems unlikely...

"I copied it just in case."

She was an oddity. Dark Brown hair with a dyed shock of red that was a rare dash of color amongst the drab new recruits and at 5'4'' she didn't strike a very impressive stance. Perhaps if she was in clothes that fit... but even then she was very young. Giddy even. Unlike anyone else that was accepted into the Pathfinder Lodge to his knowledge. Which said a lot for her abilities.

Colin did assess his fellow initiates whenever he could. He joined for knowledge, but he also wanted to know what other's knew too. At his age, he knew (unlike others at this lodge,) too well that he would never know it all. It was just as important to make contacts and find experts in these lost areas as it was to study himself. Penelope and her sister were both at the top of the class. Perhaps not always with the right answer, but always one of the first to try and answer. He was definitely keeping his eyes on them.

She was right more then she was wrong though... Her knowledge was impressive. This giddiness was a bit more troubling. Hopefully the venture-captains burned that out of her before she was forced to deal with the outside world. Even as he thought it, a hint of sadness crossed his brow at the thought.

He turned his gaze towards the scrolls she had brought. "So, what do we have?"
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Penelope Quink

Post  Penelope on Sun Nov 15, 2015 8:16 pm

"Well. . ." Penny took a seat beside the man, folded her sleeves back so that her hands emerged from the cuffs and and reverently smoothed them over the parchment. "It's written in Osiriani again. . . as you can see obviously," she chided herself, "but the preface is in Common. The scroll records the unearthing of a tomb in Thuvia by a Pathfinder named Akhaefet el Naqeb, who discovered a perfect crystal orb artifact buried within. He was able to deduce that it could give darkvision to the blind or to those who closed their eyes and held the orb up before them, though they gained some sort of. . .weird light sensitivity while doing so. It says here that he believed it had more capability but before he could get it back to the lodge for further study, he was set upon by a group of bandits sent by the local Waterlord and they. . . Oh." She stopped abruptly and adjusted her glasses. "Well that's rather horrible, isn't it. I must have skimmed right over that part before. Hmm. Well, I'll just skip it again." Penny cleared her throat and continued. "Needless to say, he didn't make it and the bandits took the orb, but the story was recounted by the man's scribe, Samtu, who barely made it out with his life. According to this, Akhaefet found evidence of Mwangi influence in the tomb as well as other non-magical artifacts native to the Expanse."

The girl looked up from the scroll and stared out over the table, pursing her lips and twitching her mouth from side to side in consideration. "I thought it might be a clue to the artifact origin, sooooo," she drawled, "I pulled out these other scrolls detailing known magical artifacts of the Mwangi. Maybe we'll find something here!

"And the best part?!" Penny beamed at him and unrolled one of the afore mentioned scrolls to show her fellow initiate. "It's in Polyglot! Completely untranslated! And I don't have a clue how to read it! This is gonna be great!"

The youngest Quink rifled through her overstuffed pack and pulled out another set of weights to hold fast the second scroll. "Of course you may very well know Polyglot, Colin, I really should ask you first. I've got to admit I was a little surprised that you were so familiar with Osiriani." She peeked up at him curiously as she continued rummaging for her scribing tools. "I mean. . .you don't seem to have spent a lot of time under the great Osirion sun, so. . . Did you learn it for business or for pleasure?"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Sun Nov 15, 2015 8:34 pm

"I can honestly say," he muttered as he looked at the indecipherable scribblings, "that I have never laid eyes on this... Polyglot." He studied it for a moment before his brow furled. "Or have I? A few of these words seem familiar... maybe a familiar root language somewhere in the far past?

"I took little joy from my few years in Sothis if that's what you ask." he said with a shrug. "I spent some time doing some research... little tomb hunting. Didn't find what I was looking for, and the leads I had didn't justify the sun there.

"Truly unpleasant place. I don't recommend it. Your day consists of either burning noon or cold dead of night. Nothing really in between. Especially in summer of 4686. It was brutal." Glancing at his pale hand on the scroll he chuckled realizing what she meant. "The sun and I aren't exactly friendly... I spent a lot of time inside.

"Learning Osiriani for example." His nose scrunched up as he considered his own past. Already Colin had put Osirion on a shelf in his memories and walked away from it. One more life in what would hopefully be many more to come. Looking at Penelope though, a thought occurred to him. Had it really been nearly twenty years he spent there? Longer then this girl had even been alive!

He rolled the scroll up and looked at his partner more pointedly. "What of yourself? You're no stranger to languages yourself. Exaclty how old are you again?"
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Post  Penelope on Sun Nov 15, 2015 10:18 pm

"Thirteen. . .but I don't see how that's of any consequence," she sniffed indignantly, setting a flask of ink on the desk along with a few sheets of blank parchment. "I've had plenty of time to pick up languages and have been lucky enough to have plenty of teachers willing to feed me as quickly as I could devour them. Mom taught me Varisian, a friend taught me Draconic and dad left me enough material to begin piecing together Thassilonian. Compared to that, Polyglot has got to be a cakewalk!" Pausing in her rummaging momentarily, the young girl frowned at her pack in thought. "What exactly is a cakewalk? What is that even supposed to mean?" She muttered mostly to herself.

The final item Penny removed from her pack was what appeared to be a needle. Seven inches long and black as pitch, it was wrapped in fine linen in order to provide a comfortable hand grip, with only about an inch left at the end as the nib. "Anyway, what I have not had until now is the opportunity to get out of Magnimar and experience for myself some of these amazing things I've read about in the Pathfinder Chronicles. Clearly you have, Mister Tomb Hunter!"

She grinned at Colin and dipped the tip of her needle into the ink, holding it there a moment before tapping it off on the rim of the flask and beginning the long process of scratching out a copy of the unfamiliar characters that they might pick it apart and decipher it. Of course, she could simply have used magic to translate it, but where would be the fun in that?

"Quid pro quo, Colin Marcus," she stated without looking up from her parchment. "You say you were in Sothis twenty seven years ago, so you must have been very young yourself to go gallivanting through the desert. What is it that you were looking for in those tombs that you could not find?"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Sun Nov 15, 2015 10:58 pm

"Well... I wasn't that young," Colin said with a smirk with just a bit of fang. "However when I first started out, I wasn't much older then you are now. I was about fifteen myself. But that had nothing to do with Sothis."

"Sothis was a trip to seek out ancient secrets. Knowledge lost to the centuries and buried with powerful necromancers." He couldn't help but grimace at that lost time. "Ancient Osirion was known for their necromancers and they have uncovered certain spells and such not found in other places. Things like the Aleh Almaktoum... Very rare, but not unheard of. I had heard rumors that there was even older things buried in those tombs... but I came out with little to show for it.

"Pretty much the same thing I'm doing here." He waved his hand out around him. "The Grand Lodge... the next great repository of knowledge. Soon I'll have access to a lot more then I did in Osirion.. or Kyonin for that matter.

"What of you? Looking for something specific or just fortune and glory?"
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Penelope Quink

Post  Penelope on Mon Nov 16, 2015 12:56 pm

Startled, Penny blinked and setting down her quill, removed her spectacles to check for any smudge that may account for that abnormal flash of white that accompanied Colin's smirk. She saw nothing, but in order to give herself a moment to process this new clue about her enigmatic classmate, she cleaned them off anyway using the sleeve of her grey robes.

Races of all variety meandered the streets of Magnimar. She'd met elves and dwarves and gnomes and halflings, half-elves, an infrit once who was driven out of the Library for safety reasons. There was even a couple of tieflings that had regular occasion to visit the Great Library. She'd heard that ratmen also lived within the darker parts of the city and many others that eked out a living on the fringes of the mostly human society, but she couldn't assign a race to this particular fellow initiate. Maybe he just liked to file down his canines in his free time. Pathfinders take all kinds after all. . .

"Immortality," the girl finally stated in response to his question, but she didn't expound. Instead, fixated on the mystery at hand, she set her spectacles back upon the bridge of her nose and looked over to the pale man with a quizzical eyebrow raised sky high.

"It's probably impolite for me to mention, but. . .my what sharp teeth you have!"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Mon Nov 16, 2015 1:46 pm

Colin's eyes narrowed and he closed his lips. That may have been an error in judgement on his part. The dhampir had long stopped being ashamed of what he was. He had already flashed his fangs to scare a few people into getting out of his way.

He found intimidation to be a useful alternative to violence. Most notably in this place where violence could get him blocked from his goals. However... having the retched undead blood pumping through your veins was a touchy subject with most people. While he was surprised word hadn't reached her yet, he wasn't entirely sure what he wanted to say at this time.

"So I've been told," he stated simply. "Hereditary I hear. From my father's side.

"Now... Immortality? In my experience it is usually old men dreaming of immortality. You fit neither quality." His eyes narrowed as he thought of the many dark and twisted ways he'd heard of to achieve the goal.

"How do you plan on achieving that goal?"
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Penelope Quink

Post  Penelope on Mon Nov 16, 2015 2:35 pm

Accepting his brief explanation for the time being, the young girl turned back to the topic at hand. "Well. . ." She picked up her quill and held it out before her. "With this! Not to put too fine a point on it." She poked the tip of her finger with the quill and grinning a goofy grin, waited for him to appreciate her pun. Realizing that would be a wait she didn't have the lifespan for, she chose to elaborate instead.

"The names of the Pathfinders that have written the Chronicles will remembered forever. Their tales are taught to us in our initiate classes and lodges all over the world know their names and study their deeds. . .seriously, Durvin Gest has that twenty foot statue out in the atrium! Immortality," Penny beamed at him excitedly.

"I mean sure, there's a lot of. . . stuff that's got to happen between graduation and immortality, but I figure it'll work itself out. I'd rather not end up like poor Akhaefet here," she motioned to the Thuvian report, "but it's a risk I'm willing to take. Better that then molder in the shadow of the Irespan all my life touting theories. Nope, nope, I'd rather prove theories by uncovering proof of my own and then writing my own Chronicle. Maybe more than one! One day they'll be teaching the initiates about discoveries I helped make and that I wrote about!"

Penny sighed happily and started scratching at the parchment again, carefully duplicating the strange characters. "Do you not have similar aspirations? You say you are seeking particular knowledge and knowledge is a tool. What do you plan on accomplishing with this particular tool?"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Mon Nov 16, 2015 2:48 pm

"Ha!" Colin barked out with a grin. Of all the ways he's known of to live forever... a statue for writing a book hadn't even crossed his mind. In Ustalev one of the lessons he'd learned early was that trust was hard earned. Had this girl been intending on cheating Pharasma through undeath... he would have had to eventually take action. Glancing over the youth, he would have had time before she was true threat to humanity... but this was much better.

"No... I'm more interested in the actions then whether anyone knows that I was the one who did it... Set a goal, Survive, Set another goal. Leave the storytelling and fame to the bards I say...

He leaned forward and whispered conspiratorially. He didn't want this broadcast for all to hear... but on the other hand if someone beat him to his goal, he wouldn't shed many tears. Again, he wasn't interested in the credit. "As for my particular goals... They're lofty, but I haven't given up hope on them yet. My homeland... has an infestation of undead. No one knows where they came from... how they came to be.

"Some how magic had to be involved... and that means scrolls and books." He let his eyes drift over the dusty stacks in the library. "Long forgotten... tomes... What do you say? Think I'm in the right place?"
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Post  Penelope on Mon Nov 16, 2015 3:49 pm

"I would say that if there is an answer to be found, than you should be able to find it among the Pathfinders!" Penny smiled proudly as if her acceptance was already a foregone conclusion and she counted herself among their ranks. Sure, there would be a good deal of work to do over the next years before it became official, but this was a bone far too meaty to allow to be wrested from her jaws.

If there was at all a place for her in this world, this was it!

"You know Colin, Elle Quink. . .my sister," she clarified, still clearly astounded at finding such unexpected familial relations at all, not to mention so far from home! "Well, she also has expressed an intense dislike for such life-challenged creatures. Perhaps you two should discuss the matter."

She looked up from her parchment to regard the man. "I'm sure she would be interested in helping with your search."

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Re: Assignment in the Archives

Post  Colin Marcus on Mon Nov 16, 2015 3:59 pm

"Your sister?" Colin thought back to the classes. Blonde... Half-elf... alchemist... "Right, the other Quink girl..." He hadn't dealt much with Elle yet, but she was one who he suspected recognized him for what he was. There had been a lot of hard gazes sent his way. Not something he was unused to. He wasn't entirely certain if she hated him or feared him... or if it was some combination of the two.

Regardless, she was on his list of useful people in the lodge. If she truly hated the undead as much as I did, and knew half as much as he thought she did... she would welcome addition to his cause. It would take time though. Perhaps a lot of time...

"I don't think your sister likes me all that much..."
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Post  Penelope on Mon Nov 16, 2015 4:44 pm

"I'm still not sure that I like you all that much. . ."

Penny snickered and pushed her spectacles back up to the bridge of her nose. "You're quiet but you clearly know a lot. Tomb hunter is definitely a point in your favor and then of course you'll actually speak to me and not at me. All things considered I think that makes you my best friend here in Absalom!"

Colin felt a sharp kick to the ankle as the girl grinned up at him. "I'm just teasing you know. Mostly. I'm not going to start stalking you or anything. Probably." She bit her lip to keep from laughing and went back to her transcriptions.

"Elle and I are still getting to know each other, but I'm not convinced she's the type to formulate such quick opinions about someone. Have you even spoken to her? No offense, but she's not mentioned you at all and you don't exactly go out of your way to make yourself known among the other initiates. So what makes you think she doesn't like you?"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Mon Nov 16, 2015 5:01 pm

"Gut instinct..." Colin stated simply. Some things were hard to explain. For example, that he had the blood of the undead flowing through him and yet despite his half unholy nature... meant no harm to his fellow students. If this Elle hated his lineage as much as he suspected... that would be difficult conversation for later.

"If I'm the best friend you've made so far... that doesn't say much for your social skills Ms. Quink," he said with a dry chuckle.
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Post  Penelope on Mon Nov 16, 2015 6:05 pm

"Yeah well, you're not wrong," she muttered down at the parchment. "In fairness though, the other initiates don't exactly see me as someone who could run in their social circles. . . Like having your baby sister around I suppose. I can't really blame them but it makes fraternizing a bit of an uphill battle."

Penny shoved the sleeve of her formless grey robe back up to her elbow and dipped the quill into the ink.

"Elle says I try too hard," the girl admitted, "and she's probably right. Best that I just stick to my studies and let them all flock to me." Snickering, she peeked up at him over the rim of her spectacles.

"You don't seem all that interested in socializing with the initiate throng either, and you don't seem the shy type. Not here to make friends?"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Mon Nov 16, 2015 7:56 pm

"Acquaintances. Contacts... I think that's a safe enough term use at this point," he said with a moment's thought.

"The Pathfinder Society stretches all across the world. My goals are to increase my contacts... accumulate favors... open doors... that sort of thing." He shrugged as he considered the young girl.

"I wouldn't worry too much about fraternizing. In my experience friends, true friends, the ones you'd die for and who'd die for you... they just happen. They require very little work on your part."

His gaze clouded over as he lost himself in a memory. A sad little smile crept up as he added, "I've had a few friends like that, I'm sure I'll have more in the future. Friends like that have a way of raising the standard. It's easier to identify who is a true friend and who is merely someone that you knew that one time..."
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Post  Penelope on Mon Nov 16, 2015 9:02 pm

"I wish to find that some day," she sighed wistfully. "I can't exactly be a solo performance. I mean, it's not like I can achieve my goals here all on my own, even if I wanted to. If I'm going to write Chronicles worth publishing, then I'm going to need to attach myself to some worthy individuals who don't mind mixing things up a bit, for I'm sure you'll agree that all the best Chronicles involve discovery in the midst of an unhealthy amount of danger!" The girl offered him a grin that only one who had never been close to any real danger could give.

Lowering quill to parchment, she continued her task. "For now, I'll need to concentrate on becoming someone valuable enough for a team of said worthy individuals to take on.

"But considering your expression right now, maybe I shouldn't hope for the "dying for" kind of friends at all and just settle for people I can trust. Seems like deep attachment to the former can lead to deep sadness down the road." Penny peeked up at him. "Is it worth it?" She asked bluntly. "The pain of losing them?"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Mon Nov 16, 2015 9:07 pm

"Oh yes..." Colin said softly at the unexpected question. Memories flooded into him. "Syfer, Kymil, Llyndrathyl... I only have to think of who I was before knowing them, and realize I wouldn't be who I am had I never met them.

"The pain is still there... Friends found... friends lost... but it fades with time and the good memories outshine the bad ones. Syfer was the first to help focus me on my mission... I still remember the lessons he taught and the drinks we shared much more then the battle he fell in."

Seeing her expression he realized he was mistelling it. "No, Syfer didnt' die there... He just retired due to massive injuries." He drew a line across his right arm about the middle of his bicep. "He lost his arm right about here. Skeleton with a sword I believe ripped it right off. He nearly did die... and many that day did... but Syfer and I survived. He ended up retiring after that and raising a family.

"Of course... he must be dead by now... that was a hundred and twelve, no... thirteen years ago?? Before Aroden fell anyway."
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Post  Penelope on Mon Nov 16, 2015 9:30 pm

The girl's eyes grew as big as teacup saucers.  "Seriously?!"

"SHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!"  Came the inevitable response from the other patrons around the room to Penny's all-too-loud outburst.  She turned tomato crimson and ducked her head down in contrition.  

"Sorry, Colin.  I mean, I'd guessed you were a little. . .human plus, if you catch my meaning, and sure you look kind of old and all but I didn't think. . ."  Grimacing awkwardly, she cleared her throat.  "I didn't mean it like that," Penny apologized again before starting over.

"I've met all kinds of people working at the Great Library in Magnimar," she peered over to the man, "and my father worked with a group of racially mixed -- and mixed up heroes, some very unlikely indeed, and one thing he made sure that I learned was that everyone makes their own choices, no matter what type of blood is pumping through their heart.  It's our actions that determine character."  

Staunching what was about to become a rambling diatribe, Penny reversed tack and suddenly blurted out, "On a scale from one to ten, how rude would it be for me to ask what your heritage is?"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Mon Nov 16, 2015 10:59 pm

"Depends on who you ask... and when you ask them I suppose," Colin answered with a grin. It was taking a lot of willpower to not burst out laughing at her wild enthusiasm. "When I was younger... I would have rated it about a nine. Now? Now, I rate it about a four. It's not something I talk about often... but I don't shy away anymore either.

He leaned in and whispered mischeviously. "What I am is called a Dhampir. It means my father was undead... a vampire. Making me half-undead myself. Hence my gut instinct about your sister.

"In Ustalav, it made life difficult. People who know, treat me like a monster. Sometimes I can use that to my advantage... sometimes it's an inconvenience.

"Hopefully, that doesn't frighten you. I'd prefer if you just see me as... Wait? What was it you said? Kind of Old?" He ran his hand over his still smooth face and frowned. He'd lived a while now, but by his understanding he was still fairly young by his standard. Much like elves he wasn't even middle aged yet.

"What do you mean by old?"
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Post  Penelope on Wed Nov 18, 2015 2:43 pm

Colin could see the gears turning behind the girl's eyes as she peered at him intently. She didn't seem frightened just. . . . puzzled, with an unhealthy shade of morbidly curious. How could half undead be possible!? Penny pushed her spectacles back up to the bridge of her nose, her eyes never blinking. Funny, for half-undead, he certainly seemed fully alive. Except for maybe the sickly pallor. Were full vampires so well-shrouded in the trimmings of life?

"I don't mean old, old," she poorly explained after a period of awkward silence. "Just like you've lived a long time, you know? Seen a lot. Like a thirty-year-old or something." She shot him a silly smirk and patted his cheek kindly. "Don't worry, you don't really look all that old. You're still very pretty." Nope, his skin wasn't even cold or clammy! Interesting. . .

"Just so you know," Penny whispered, inching closer, clearly unafraid. "I don't think you're a monster, Colin Marcus. You don't seem the type. Then again, I really don't know you very well yet, do I? Still, as long as you don't try to eat me, I won't treat you like you will. I think that's a pretty fair arrangement."

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Colin Marcus

Post  Colin Marcus on Wed Nov 18, 2015 2:51 pm

"Indeed..." Colin whispered as he considered the girl. His pale face almost grew whiter as she made light of his particular issue. It had been a long time since he had slipped, and it wasn't a pleasant memory. Certainly not something that he would mention to Penelope. He still wasn't sure how close he should let her get. The fact that she didn't fear him was a bonus, however if she was equally cavalier towards all dangerous things, then she could be a serious liability on a team. Something that he would have to remember in the future. For now however, he consciously put on a grin

"That seems perfectly fair to me," he said as he leaned in conspiratorially. "But lets keep this agreement between us. No sense letting everyone know which threats are real."
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Penelope Quink

Post  Penelope on Wed Nov 18, 2015 4:55 pm

"Of course," she narrowed her eyes, mildly offended that he would even feel it needed to be mentioned. "It's not like I'm going to go spouting the news all over Absalom or anything. I'm not even going to tell Elle. No way. . ." Penny waved her hands in the air as if shooing away the very notion. "That's your nest of spiders to open, not mine. I'm staying out of it!

"But on the whole I think you'll find a comfortable niche among the Pathfinders just being yourself. I've read that they take all kinds as long as the members work to advance the organization's goal to further their knowledge. I'm not saying you need to go spill the beans right away or anything, but maybe around here you won't feel like you have to hide."

A world of bright, naive optimism shone out from the smile she offered the man, then Penelope Quink scooted back into her territorial bubble and snatched up her quill.

"We really should get to work here, Colin," she eyed the problematic parchment in polyglot print dubiously. "You mention real threats. . . The threat of NOT finishing this assignment in time is very real indeed, and I don't think Venture-Captain Ambrose will take 'partially dead' as an excuse for tardiness!"

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Post  Colin Marcus on Wed Nov 18, 2015 6:30 pm

Colin chuckled in agreement. The idea of using his biology as an excuse to slack on the work wouldn't have even occurred to him. Admittedly, there were issues with sunlight that made him a less then ideal choice for some assignments. Still, he was the type to push through a weakness instead of complaining about it.

He glanced over the scroll and made a few notes. He wasn't particularly fond of translations... but still felt a bit giddy at the idea of unlocking secret knowledge. They worked in silence for a while, occasionally comparing notes as the scroll slowly became legible. Unfortunately the more he learned about eye orbs, the less they seemed to focus on his own quests... and thus his attention waned.

"Tell me about your father Penelope." He said as scratched a few things down on his notes. "You said he taught the Thassalonian and that he worked with some 'racially mixed' heroes, didn't you? Is he a Pathfinder too or merely a run of the mill adventurer?" He couldn't contain a smirk considering the best they could hope for before passing their tests was 'run of the mill adventurer'. Something he'd taken some pride in before signing up with the pathfinders and one he'd undoubtedly take pride in again should he choose to leave the lodge someday. "Are we going to see him wandering around here?"
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Penelope Quink

Post  Penelope on Wed Nov 18, 2015 9:35 pm

"My dad isn't 'run-of-the-mill' anything." Penny spoke with pride as she peered up at him over the rims of her spectacles. "He's neither Pathfinder nor adventurer, but a scholar and historian of ancient Thassilon. It was due to his knowledge, theories and leadership that the Heroes of Sandpoint were able to go off to defeat the awakened Runelord of Greed and save the world!"

She stuck her quill in the inkpot and stretched out her cramping fingers. "Maybe you've not heard anything about that yet, but you will. One day," she added with a frown. "Academia moves slowly and they have no love for my father. His theories on the dates and activities of the Thassilonian empire have challenged long held beliefs and texts taught as fact, and head-bloated scholars do not appreciate being informed that they're wrong.

"But now the archaeological evidence is there. An ancient library has been discovered," Penny shrugged. "It remains to be seen how long they will deny it while continuing to vilify dad.

"No man should be put before the furtherance of knowledge. No ego should be put ahead of the truth." She shook her head incredulously. "So maybe that's part of why I'm here. . . I've read the evidences on both sides and based on that proof I have formed my own opinion, but I want to go out into the world and discover for myself how much more evidence can be found. I want to write about it and have it published in the Chronicles, so that knowledge will no longer be theory but fact, and if dad is right -- and I believe he is, then he will be remembered as a great scholar and not a quack."

Penelope shoved her spectacles to the bridge of her nose, as if dotting her speech with a bold period.

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