foreverwarrior: (Miranda (fearless))

Wherever I May Roam ~ Metallica
[listen, lyrics]
When: October, 1792
Where: France
Alias: Gabrielle Valmont

Mist swirled around her as the horse galloped down the road. Dawn was only an hour away and she need to reach Calais. The country was roiling with words of "révolution" and "guillotine." She had to escape.

Wind tore at her coat. She wasn't so foolish as to try and ride in full skirts and corset. A tricorn was pulled to her brow and her long, red hair was tied back in a queue. Only her soft features would give clue that she wasn't what she seemed.

Though the night was silent, she could almost hear the shouts of the rioters behind her. In days past, she might've taken up their cause, but their new weapon turned her blood cold in fear. She knew it wasn't just the nobility that were hunted, but also those like herself.

Light crept onto the road and Calais was only a few miles ahead. She would miss the physical belongings she had left behind, but had decided to spare no time packing them. Instead, she simply changed into a man's costume, strapped her ages-old sword to her back, and had disappeared from the Valmont estate that very night.

Since then, she had called the road her home for nearly a week. She could've stayed at several inns along the route, but was wary of such establishments. Instead, she chose to make camp where she could. Luckily, she remembered enough woodslore to live off the land, as it were.

foreverwarrior: (Miranda (b/w sword))
April 16, 1746
Culloden, Scotland

A lone figure, wrapped in a drenched woolen cloak stood on a small hillock overlooking the battle, watching the dream of a free Scotland crumble under English cannon and musket fire. Shouts of men were drowned by the raw April day full of fierce winds and driving rain, and it was suicide to do battle in such conditions. Something had drawn the figure to the site. One of her kind was caught up in the fray, she could feel it. An hour, one bloody hour, and Scotland was changed. She knew what the victory meant: death to the old ways. The English would make sure the independently-minded Scots would be brought to heel. She watched as the English redcoats moved among the fallen, slicing and stabbing with their bayonets. She felt that tingling flicker and fade and waited to see a subsequent lightning storm. The figure breathed a sigh of relief when it never came.
Connor waited until darkness to rise from the spot where grapeshot had lain him down, and the Clansman glanced about bitterly at the death and destruction that surrounded him. The MacLeods had been at the front of the line, the very center of battle where the fighting had been fiercest. His countrymen had fought bravely but had been outnumbered and outgunned, and now the sessenach would make sure there would be no more risings out of the Highlands. "What a bloody waste," he muttered, disgusted.
Read more... )

…To be continued…

Connor's parts written by [ profile] immortal_connor's mun
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (b/w sword))
Quinn and Kit as pirates.
Two strangers in a pub griping about boyfriends past.
Quinn is one of Kit's teachers.

Sorry, I couldn't resist combining them. :D

The port of Tortuga was lively that night, and the Oar and Rudder was the rowdiest grog shop on the waterfront. Voices were raised either in song or argument while billiard balls clashed in another room and rum flowed like water. It was a grand escape from life aboard ship, and Captain Jacqueline Ravenwood, Jac to those who knew her, was glad to be on shore, at least for the next few days.

Read more... )
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (b/w orly))
Continued from here.

When: April, 1630
Where: Paris, France
Alias: Gabrielle Dubois Vicomtesse d'Anjou

Pacing always helped her think. She couldn't very well give Cardinal Richelieu what he wanted. A man like that? Immortal? She shuddered to think. She had to act, now. Staying there until morning would spell her doom.

Cautiously, she crept to the door and peered through the keyhole. Two guards stood at either side of the door. Getting past them would be difficult at best, but not entirely impossible. It was the rest of the palace that would present the real problem.

She continued to pace, toying with the the gold, dragon-crested ring on her right hand. Though Arthur had been dead for centuries, wearing the ring helped remind her of her role in history. A warm sense of determined fury filled her veins.
Read more... )
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (b/w orly))
Your muse has been captured or imprisoned and must rely on an enemy or a complete stranger to secure their release.

When: April, 1630
Where: Paris, France
Alias: Gabrielle Dubois Vicomtesse d'Anjou

Freyja exited the carriage with a sense of foreboding. When one was summoned by Cardinal Richelieu, refusal was simply not done. She had never before met the Cardinal, second in power only to King Louis XIII, and she was not aware the Chief Minister even knew of her existence. She tucked away her fear into a small corner of her mind and climbed the steps of Le Palais Cardinal as though it were an everyday occurrence.

Once inside the imposing structure, a valet took her cloak and gloves and another richly-clothed footman showed her to the Cardinal's formal offices. Gabrielle held her elegantly-coiffed head high, and tried not to gape at the opulence surrounding her.

The servant's footsteps echoed hollowly down the corridor. She spotted several other dignitaries along their route, nodding to those who acknowledged her, ignoring those who didn't. Guards dressed in the red tabbards of the Cardinal stood at several doorways and at intersecting passages. She couldn't imagine why Richelieu wanted to meet with her at all.

Read more... )

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Gabrielle Dubois
Highlander OC
1228 Words
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (b/w sword))
A priest opens the door, and ushers you inside. Sanctuary, you mumble wearily. Of course, my child, he answers. His voice is soft, kind, safe. The night blurs past you. A woman, a nun?, comes to help you. You're cleaned with shockingly cold water. Rough, homespun cloth settles around you. You're given a bed to sleep in, and suddenly, it's morning.

Breakfast is bread, cheese, an apple and some fresh spring water. You're ravenous. The fight last night has brought out your appetite. Who were you running from? the priest asks. The man with the sword, you answer. He was trying to kill me. The priest and the nun exchange glances. We saw no one. That doesn't surprise you. You know holy ground is your only haven. An idea tickles your mind.

I'd like to stay, you say, once the last crumbs of the meal have been eaten. You want no more of being what you are. You hate being Hunted. And if staying on holy ground keeps you safe, so be it. Of course, my child.

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Highlander OC
176 Words
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (b/w sword))
{Based on this picture from this post}

You run through the darkness. A sword gleams brightly in the moonlight. Nighttime surrounds you as you flee your attacker. You need safety, sanctuary, holy ground. He cannot hurt you on holy ground.

The air bites at your cheeks as the ground reaches for you. Leaves and dirt crunch loudly beneath you as you sprawl onto the forest floor. The sword abandons your hand and you search for it, your only protection against death.

He's coming. You can hear him breathing in the crisp air. You can hear his footsteps on the leaves. You can feel him crawling up the back of your neck.

You hate this life. You hate being vulnerable. You hate the dance of kill or be killed. You hate this curse that has kept you alive longer than a hundred men put together. But the warrior within you won't let you die.

Your fingers finally find the hilt of the sword, and not a moment too soon. He's right behind you. You swing the weapon wildly, feeling the crunch of bone beneath the metal. He bellows in pain. The sword has nearly cleaved his arm.

You use the distraction to regain your feet and run. A path unravels before you in the dim moonlight. You don't know where it leads, but anywhere is better than here.

Your heart pounds as your feet pelt the earth. The cold burns your lungs as skeletal branches reach for the eclipsed moon. You have only one thing on your mind: sanctuary.

You can hear him behind you, taunting you, running for you. He tells you no woman should have the power you do. That power should only belong to men. They are the only ones who understand how to wield it.

In the distance, an object looms above the trees: a dome, capped by a cross. Tears of relief and fright stream down your cheeks. You're almost there. So close!

A hand reaches out from the darkness, tangling in your cloak. You fling your sword backwards, hoping to fend off the attacker. You feel it slice through flesh, biting against bone. The hand releases you and you stumble forward.

It is a race. The race of your life. The one who can reach the church lives. The one who does not, dies. You are too much a warrior to lose.

An iron gate bars your way, and you scramble over it, the bars clinging to your skirts like beggars after coins. Cloth rips and you are free.

Gravestones gleam in the moonlight. Your fingers clutch your sword in the moonlight. Your heart is pounding in the moonlight.

You gather your strength and stagger up the stone steps to the oaken door of the church.

"Sanctuary!" your breath rasps in your throat as you pound on the wood. "Sanctuary!"

Your vision dims and you collapse against the steps in the moonlight.

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Highlander OC
480 Words
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (Guinevere))
“Death ends a life, but it does not end a relationship, which struggles on in the survivor's mind toward some resolution which it may never find.” I Never Sang For My Father

I didn't want to see him. I couldn't see him. I wanted to remember him as hale, healthy and whole, not laying on his deathbed suffering a mortal wound. It was because of me he was wounded. Mordred, damn him, had called my honour into account and Arthur could not stand idle any longer. Lancelot offered to take his place, but Arthur wouldn't hear of it. Later, Lance had told me that Arthur knew of his Immortality, and that trait would be seen as an unfair advantage. Arthur, himself, being an honourable man would not let another fight for him, especially when his wife's fidelity was called into question. It was a conflict of interest of monumental proportions should Lance fight in his stead. The guilt rested squarely on my shoulders. In my logic, twisted by grief, Arthur would only recover if I never entered his rooms. I counted myself a thousand times a fool for not listening to Merlin's warning.

"Gwen." Only when we were well and truly alone would Lance ever unbend as to use my nickname. "Guinevere, you must go see him."

I stopped my pacing in the torchlit corridor to face my protector, my champion and my best friend.

"Do not ask that of me," I answered softly. "You know I cannot."

"Guinevere," he chided softly, taking a shoulder in each hand. "He is your husband, and your King. If you do not make an effort, and he dies, you will be forced to bear that for eternity."

"Or until someone takes my head," I replied wryly.

"You are too much of a warrior for that to ever happen," Lance answered. "Do you want to carry the guilt of not saying 'good-bye' when you had the chance?"

It was a point he didn't have to make twice. I simply nodded, my unbound hair falling to cover my face and my shame. In a rare gesture of affection, Lance leaned forward and gently kissed the top of my head. It was nearly my undoing, but as Queen, I had to be strong, as strong as my King had been weakened. Stiffening my resolve, and my spine, I slowly opened the door to the solar.

The walk from the door to the bed was the longest twenty paces of my life. Arthur's face was pale and drawn. Merlin could do nothing to slow the poison Mordred had used on his blade. The blade itself had sliced into Arthur's belly, leaving him to languish for nearly a day and a half. I cautiously approached the bed, not wanting to disturb him lest he slept.

"Ahh, Guinevere," he greeted me, his voice barely above a whisper, and his eyes open only a fraction.

"Hush, my love," I replied, easing myself into sitting on the edge of the bed. "Save your strength. You'll need it to get well."

"Guinevere, I have never known you to be in denial," Arthur said. His voice was halting and with each breath, I could hear the death-rattle in his lungs.

"It is not denial, but faith," I answered, taking his hand. I tried to tell myself that it was warm when it clearly was not. Death's icy grip had already begun to claim his fingers.

"Then you must have faith that Heaven awaits me," he replied. "The one who has died for my sins awaits me there. If you have faith, believe in that."

Arthur had always been patient with my disagreement for Christian doctrine. He had never berated my pagan upbringing, nor did he condemn me, and for that he would have my eternal loyalty.

"You will hold the Grail, Arthur," I promised vehemently. "One day, you will hold it."

A vague smile crossed his lips. "And I hold you to your vow, Guinevere Pendragon."

Breath ceased to fill his lungs as his hand went limp in mine. "Go to him, Arthur." I whispered, fighting a losing battle with tears.

I slowly eased the ring bearing the crest of Camelot off his finger. I knew it would pass to Mordred who was Arthur's closest kin. I wiped my tears on a flowing sleeve before leaving our rooms. Lancelot, Merlin, and Mordred were all awaiting me in the corridor.

"The King is dead," I announced, pausing to give the ring to Mordred before soundly backhanding him. "Long live the King."

The passing days were a grief-stricken blur. Arthur hadn't been buried on Avalon a week when Mordred condemned me as unfaithful and removed me as Queen in the same breath he proclaimed himself King. Lancelot and Gawain escorted me to Gawain's family holdings on Orkney. It was there that I began to formulate a plan to retrieve the Grail for Arthur. In truth, it would take nearly fifteen hundred years, but I did indeed keep my promise to my husband and my King.

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Highlander OC
810 Words
[ profile] her_championis Quinn's headmate & mine to use.
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (Guinevere))
As requested by [ profile] rude_not_ginger

Tourney days were always the highlight of summer. Crowds filled Camelot lands, dotting the landscape with brightly-coloured tents. Merchants brought their wares, farmers sold their crops, and the scents of roasting meat, baking bread, and bubbling pies filled the air.

She loved walking amongst the everyday crowd. To that end, she had slipped out of her rooms and donned a more humble dress. Only her dragon-crested ring marked her as anyone out of the ordinary.

She wasn't simple enough to think that her disguise was foolproof. Many of the stall-keepers and some of the other gentry knew her on sight. Most tolerated her strange behaviour with a small nod of acknowledgement, and she knew that any stall where she paused would see an influx of business within moments of her departure. Everyone wanted to know what she had said, or bought, and the merchants would be busy for the rest of the afternoon. She had just complimented a fabric merchant on a particular bolt of fine blue velvet when someone caught her eye.

He was unlike anyone else she had seen. His close-cropped brown hair stuck up at odd angles, and a most interesting suit of brown clothes hung from his wiry frame. Over the suit, he wore a strange, sleeved robe. What intrigued her the most was his manner of speech.

"Brilliant! Would you look at that?" he muttered to himself with all the wide-eyed enthusiasm of a small boy. "I've always wanted one of those!"

She approached him curiously. "Sir? Are you quite well?"

"Never better!" he exclaimed with a wide grin. "I must say, the things you humans have managed to create without electricity is absolutely fantastic!"

If she hadn't had half the conversations with Merlin as she did, she would have been utterly confused. As it was, she wondered if he was another wizard. She had just opened her mouth to speak when he spotted a jeweler’s stall and began walking towards it. Several people gasped as he turned his back to her.

"What? What is it? What happened?" he asked turning his head, looking around for the object of their chagrin.

She cleared her throat with a mild, wry smile. "My name is Guinevere Pendragon."

"Blimey! Are you really?" he asked, astonished.

"And you are?" she prompted, holding out her hand for him.

"The Doctor," he grinned, pumping her hand enthusiastically.

A few people looked at him in consternation, but she simply smiled, not letting his behaviour bother her. In fact, she found it rather charming.

"Well, then, Doctor. How do you find our little tourney?" she asked politely as they continued to walk down the row of stalls.

"Oh, I didn’t find it," he replied. "The TARDIS did. Simply mentioned I fancied a bit of jousting and here I am. Brilliant, ay?"

"TARDIS?" she repeated, confused. "What is that?"

"She, actually," he answered, almost distractedly.

"Alright, what is she?" Guinevere asked, curiously.

"Time And Relative Dimensions In Space," he muttered. Then his eye landed on a nearby fruit cart. "Gutted! No bananas! I mean, there wouldn’t be would there? They haven’t been discovered yet, have they? By Western Europeans, I mean."

"The TARDIS. Is that your…" she paused looking for the right word. "Ship?"

"Not really, no," he replied evasively and quickly walked to a glassmaker’s stall. "Hello! What have we here?"

He promptly picked up a multi-faceted prism nearly the size and shape of an apple. Holding it up to the sunlight, he was quickly covered in small rainbows.

"Do you know what this is?" he asked excitedly.

"A prism," she replied simply.

"Well, yes. Besides that," he answered. She shook her head in confusion. "I’ve been looking for one of these for ages! It’s a Multi-Beam Refractor Unit, and it’s exactly what I need to fix the TARDIS’ chameleon circuit! Brilliant!"

He then prattled on about the faulty circuit and its repairs. She quickly realized she had absolutely no understanding of half the things he said. Perhaps Merlin…

"Well! This has been interesting, but I need to be off," he grinned, and quickly started walking in the other direction.

"What about the jousting?" she called after him, most unladylike.

"Some other time!" he replied with a wave and disappeared into the crowd. "Nice meeting you, though!"

She stared after him, equal parts confused, amused, and indignant. It wasn’t often that someone rendered her absolutely speechless. Gathering her skirts, she walked quickly back to the castle to have a word with Merlin. Maybe he could explain the odd man’s even stranger behaviour.

{And thanks to [ profile] handysparehand for the beta/review! *G*}
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (Guinevere))
"His treachery runs deeper than you know."

Merlin's warnings were never idle, that much she knew from the old wizard. What surprised her was the adamant tone of his voice. Even the brown owl perched on the back of a chair fluffed his feathers in surprise.

"Mordred has always wanted the Crown for himself, and will do anything to succeed in his obsession," he added. "He will use any means at his disposal. Already, his lies have caused discord among Arthur's knights, and he will use your friendship with Lancelot to his advantage, Guinevere."

At the sound of her name, she turned from the massive stone fireplace that occupied one wall of the tower room. "Do you truly think Mordred that devious?"

Merlin nodded gravely. She crossed her arms defiantly. She refused to let that sot push her around, no matter how subtle his methods. If she quit her friendship with Lancelot, Mordred would think her easily manipulated. Should she continue said friendship, Mordred would very well use that against her to boot. It was a situation that would have to be handled with panache and grace.

"Is Arthur aware of Mordred's schemes?" she asked.

"I think not," Merlin replied, running a hand over his flowing white beard.

"His own son and he doesn't realize the lengths he'll go to. And, again, my hands are tied. Arthur refuses to believe me instead of his bastard son."

"Men are often blinded by their offspring," Merlin replied sagely.

"And the only heir to the throne to boot," Guinevere grumbled. "Oh, how I hate politics!"

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Guinevere Pendragon
Highlander OC/Historical Legend crossover
262 Words
This is not binding to any Arthur, Merlin or Mordred muses.
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (fearless))
When: October, 62 AD
Where: Venonæ, Britannia (High Cross, Lutterworth, Warwickshire, UK)
Alias: Boudica

Bodies littered the ground, broken and bloodied. Half her forces had not survived to see sunset. Half or more of those that remained told the story of the battle in wounds and severed limbs. Over a hundred thousand against maybe five hundred and still, she had lost. Carrion birds squawked and argued amongst themselves for the best morsels. Her stomach churned in revolt, knowing they feasted upon those she had just that morning called friend and ally. Wind whipped at her cloak, bringing with it the vile stench of death as the sun slowly slid below the horizon. For a moment, the sky turned as bloody as the field below.

"Lady Boudica." She knew the Druid, Irial, by voice alone.

"I am dead," she said without turning.

"My lady?"

"Tell them I am dead."

"But... why?"

"How do you expect me to face them after this?" She waved a hand in the direction of the mutilated carnage. "Taya and Ciara will understand. Our lands belong to the Romans now. There's nothing for me here."

"Where will you go?"


"To the land of the Prydyn?"

Her only answer was mounting the horse standing nearby.

"What should I tell the others?"

"That I took poison and was given a proper funeral."

Of course, that meant a pyre and her ashes scattered to the four winds. The Druids would find no shortage of volunteers to play her part.

"Be well, my lady. The gods have honoured us with your presence."

"And you have honoured them, Irial. Be well."

The Druid raised his hand in solemn salute and watched in silence as she rode into the oncoming night.

In response to [ profile] _call_me_snake_'s question here.
Note: Names (aside from Boudica's) are fictional. Ciara is pronounced Key-ARE-ah.
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (fearless))
A rewrite of this.

{For Immortal Knowledge Only}

The white ribbon the Romans called “Wæcelinga Stræt” coursed through the landscape. I scowled. It was yet more proof of Roman intrusion into lands that were not theirs. They defiled the land just as they had deflowered my husband’s daughters. Nothing was sacred to them. They made their Emperors into gods and made my people pay for their temples.

The Iceni they had claimed as “savages” had systematically ruined three of their precious settlements. And the one and only Legion that had dared stand against us was slaughtered. Still, I wouldn’t rest until every last Roman left Britain without a backward glance. I would be free of them, or I would die trying.

At last the dawn came. I took to my chariot, my husband’s daughters beside me. With a flick of the reins, I urged the two horses to ride to the front of my forces. 230,000 strong; it was a sight to behold. I raised my voice to the clear morning air and spoke to them not as a Queen but as a mother avenging her daughters and a woman fighting for her freedom. Although Immortals couldn’t scar, my back still twinged at the memories of being flogged for trying to keep my husband’s daughters intact. That fury added power to my voice.

“On this spot we must either conquer, or die with glory. There is no alternative. Though a woman, my resolution is fixed: the men, if they please, may survive with infamy, and live in bondage.” I raised my voice to the dawn, praying the Gods would hear my cry. “Nothing is safe from Roman pride and arrogance. They will deface the sacred and will deflower our virgins. Win the battle or perish, that is what I, a woman, will do!”

To their credit, each raised their arms and roared with battle lust. Men, women, Iceni and Trinovante alike had answered my call. Rome must know that their deeds would not go unpunished, and we would not be conquered easily.

“Fight the foe!” I cried.

“Fight the foe!” Over two hundred thousand voices echoed in the dawn.

The Battle )

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Highlander OC
351 words (not including wiki info)
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (fearless))
When: Early First Century, AD
Where: Nærøyfjorden, Norway
Alias: Freyja Gundersdøttir

It isn't the birds or the spring sunshine that awaken her that morning, but the stench and incessant buzzing of flies. Her back is still to the unyielding granite escarpment, her legs tucked underneath her awkwardly. Slowly, she breathes, feeling life flow back into her veins. Her mind can't comprehend what's happened.

She should be dead. She had been dead. She doesn't remember anything of Valhal, only cold, all-consuming darkness. The gods had sent her to Hel. They had tested her, and she had been found wanting. She wants to scream at the unfairness. She had fought against at least six others. Hadn't that been enough for Oden?

She opens her eyes and pain rips through her. The bright sunlight is harsh against the small glen. Smoke rises up through the trees. A few paces away, she sees someone laying amongst the leaves. She stands slowly, the front of her dress is stiff with dried blood. Her blood. Her stomach clenches.

Her legs are unsteady as she stumbles over to prone form. She touches an arm, but the flesh is already cold. Flies feast on the exposed meat. The sound makes her cringe. She continues through the trees towards home. She is ill prepared for the carnage that greets her.

The feasting table has been toppled and chopped to splinters. The remains of the food litter the ground. Bodies lay nearby, cleaved and bloodied. She finds aunts, uncles, cousins. The Chieftain and his family are little more than charred remains buried under the soot and ash of the meadhall. She wanders among the wreckage of her life, numb and cold.

Her foot catches on something and she stumbles. It takes her eyes a few moments to see what lays upon the ground. A child, a girl, her eyes plucked from their sockets by a carrion-bird. Brynhildr was the first child she had helped from her mother's womb. This should have been her fifth summer, yet here she lay, broken and cleaved. Her stomach could not contain its horror any longer, but it has nothing to give. Dry retches wrack her body as she collapses to the ground.

She doesn't know how long she lays there, but she knows she cannot stay. She doesn't know where she'll go, but she can feel the pull of the sea. She gathers what supplies she can and even finds a reasonably clean change of clothes. After washing her face and mouth in the frigid waters of the fjord, she says one final prayer for the fallen, and begins her journey.

She never returns.

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Highlander OC
429 Words
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (looking down/soft smile))
When: Early First Century AD
Where: Nærøyfjorden, Norway
Name: Freyja Gundersdøttir

The blanket of glittering white cast a spell across the forest, but it was a spell that was quickly broken by boisterous, joyous voices. Tomorrow was Winter Solstice, a time of celebration on the darkest night of the year, and the traditions of her village held that the fathers and eldest, unwed daughters of each family would go into the woods surrounding the settlement to fell a tree for their Yule log.

The tree would be felled and then dragged by a team of four sturdy fjord ponies back to the mead hall. Each father would cut branches and sections of the trunk to bring back to their own homes with the largest part of the trunk to burn in the meadhall. Celebrations would continue day and night until the last of the Yule log had turned to ash. And, aside from nominal chores, no one worked.

So, on that night, her strawberry-blonde hair hidden by a reindeer-pelt hat, thirteen-year-old Freyja followed her father and the others through the darkened forest. The light from the fathers' torches glimmered off the snow-covered boughs as the other, older girls whispered stories of snow spirits who would capture anyone who ventured too far from the torchlight. Underneath her fur-lined cloak, Freyja could feel the comforting weight of the antler-handled knife her father had given her for her thirteenth birthday. Usually, such a weapon was given to the son of the house, but since Freyja was Gunder and Sigrùn's only child, she was treated as both son and daughter. And she was proving to be an avid hunter much like her father as well as a skilled healer like her mother.

A chill wind pinched her cheeks and brought her back to the task at hand. It was tradition that the youngest to pick which tree to use for the Yule log. She looked at the expectant faces of the others before roaming quietly around the sacred clearing where past logs had been felled. She took her duty very seriously, and did not want to disappoint the others.

Hearty firs could not be burned. Their soft needles stayed green throughout the long winter and were better used as decoration rather than fuel. Though birches made for good carving, they wouldn't provide enough wood to last two days, much less the hoped for week. Oaks were sacred, and no one wanted to encur Thor's wrath. Finally, she paused at the trunk of a great ash.

She remembered climbing through its branches during the bygone summers and was sad to discover that its outer branches were slowly dying. It was an old tree, and one that had spawned many offspring during its long years. It was one of her favourites in the forest and she would miss it come summer, but it was time the old ash served another purpose.

"This one, Fader," she said finally.

Gunder, a great golden bear of a man, approached the tree and ran his enormous bare hands across the rough bark. A faint smile played on his lips as he looked at the strange girl the goddess Freyja had chosen for his daughter thirteen springtides ago.

"I once played in its branches, too," he said softly, remembering his own childhood. "He was a grandfather even then. He has given many years to this forest and I do not think he should wither away like an old man."

Gunder rested a paw on Freyja's slender shoulder, and turned towards the rest of the group. The mindless twittering of the other girls as well as the gruff undertone of the men slowly died into silence.

"Freyja has made her choice," he started. "And it is a good one. Most of us have enjoyed this tree. It was here that Sigrùn and I met, and he has weathered many a storm as much a warrior as any of us. He should not be condemned to die an old man's death, but should have a hero's pyre."

The other fathers nodded in agreement and everyone moved to stand in a solemn ring around the trunk of the great tree as they all intoned the hero's prayer. Then, the daughters would all stand with the ponies to ensure they wouldn't spook as the tree crashed to the ground. As the men worked with their axes, they sang not the songs of Yule and the coming of warmer, brighter days, but warrior songs of battle and glory.

Finally, with a groan that almost sounded to Freyja like a sigh of relief, the great ash tumbled to the ground. They all then began to reduce the felled giant to smaller, more managable pieces. It would take them, all told, ten trips through the dark and bitterly cold night to bring the old ash to the village.

Each time they returned, more villagers ventured forth to watch them bring home boughs and branches for their individual homes. Everyone knew which tree Freyja had chosen, and all had fond memories of the ash, and knew it was time to celebrate the tree's great life.

Dawn was nearly breaking when they at last reached the village with the enormous trunk in tow. The fathers, the daughters and especially the ponies were exhausted from the long night trekking back and forth through the snow. A grand breakfast was prepared for the loggers, and after which, they all went to their respective homes to sleep until evening set in.

As the sun set on the longest night of the year, everyone gathered in the darkened meadhall where the families would bring a spark from their own home fires to light the great Yule log. Only after the log was fully aflame could the celebrations begin. This was Freyja's true test. If the log failed to catch fire, not only was it a bad omen for her and her family, but it didn't bode well for the rest of the village.

But she was soon rewarded as the wood began to smoke and then flames began to gnaw at the bark. Before long, the meadhall was awash in firelight and warmth representing the waxing days of sunlight to come. Everyone cheered as mugs of mulled mead were passed from table to table and the roast haunches of venison were brought forth.

To everyone's amazement, the log continued to burn for an unprecedented two weeks. Those who had been against Gunder and Sigrùn adopting this strange girl of unknown parentage, began to think differently. Some even wondered if she just might even be a child of the gods. But all agreed that there was something special about Freyja Gundersdøttir.

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Freyja Gundersdøttir
Highlander OC
1105 Words

Mun Commentary: This was one of those times when the muse takes the idea and runs with it. I have no idea if the actual traditions mentioned are true, but I'd like to think so. This is also one of the few times that Quinn Freyja has talked about her life before her First Death.
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (looking down/soft smile))
For years they had tried to have a child, but remained barren. Everyone in the small village took pity on Gunder and Sigrún. Most had known the pair since the two were children themselves, and all thought they were well matched. He was one of their best hunters and trackers and she was a gifted healer and midwife. All could see the joyful sadness in her eyes each time one of the other village women gave birth. All knew she wanted a child of her own.

It was her twenty-third springtide when she, along with healers and midwives of other villages, made their annual pilgrimage to a holy site dedicated to the goddess Freyja. As always, Sigrún felt an outcast. She was the only one of the women who had no child of her own. Nightly, she prayed that the goddess would favor her, bless her with a bairn.

On the last night of the pilgrimage, each woman entered the small, wooden temple alone to commune with the goddess. Some reported visions of Ragnarok while others said that the Freyja had appeared to them. For herself, Sigrún simply hoped that the goddess had heard her pleas.

The shrine was lit only by a small brazier of coals and incense, and she knelt in the flickering light, hoping to feel the presence of the goddess. She quieted her mind, and let her thoughts take her where they would. She was ultimately disappointed when no visions appeared, nothing of the goddess touched her. With a leaden heart, she stood to leave.

But something caught her attention. It was a sound so soft, it was easily lost in the rustle of her skirts. She paused a moment, waiting to hear the noise again. When she did, Sigrún looked around for the source. Placed just inside the door to the shrine was a small bundle. At first glance, it appeared to be a simple bundle of clothes, perhaps something left as an offering to the goddess. But when Sigrún picked up the bundle, she heard another soft noise. Instinctively, the midwife knew just what the bundle contained.

With hope in her heart, she carefully carried it closer to the light and eagerly peered inside. Swaddled in the cloth was an infant girl. Sigrún knew the child couldn't be more than a few days old, and none of the others had brought any of their bairns with them, much less one so young. This truly was an answer to her prayers.

When she emerged from the shrine with the child, the other women were wholeheartedly in agreement. Sigrún had indeed been blessed by the goddess. All hailed it as miraculous, and when asked the child's name, she answered "Freyja." It was the only name appropriate.

In time, the child grew into a young girl, and was both both her father's son and her mother's daughter. She would spend days with Gunder in the woods, learning to hunt and track. From Sigrún she learned small medicines and poultices. Though the villagers had been skeptical of the girl at first, they quickly embraced her as one of their own, and all knew that the strange, blessed child, named of the goddess, had a destiny all her own.

Freyja Gundersdøttir
Highlander OC
540 Words
foreverwarrior: (Default)
When: Summer, 61 AD
Where: SE Briton
Alias: Boudica, Iceni Queen

"My lady, what you are proposing is to go to war against Rome itself!"

She glared at the man standing across the war table.

"What would you have me do, Irial? Pretend they didn't desecrate our holy sites with shines to their Cæsars? Forget they brutalised my daughters? Dismiss the fact they publicly humiliated me?"

The air in the tent was charged with her fury. Ever since her husband died, the provincial Roman government had treated Iceni lands as their own. The Romans had disregarded their customs, and had raped their lands just as they had raped the heirs to Prasutagus' crown.

"It's a fight we can't possibly win!" her General argued. "Going against better trained, better armed soldiers is suicide!"

"By all means, Conmael! Roll over like a dog to be whipped!" she shouted. "You're welcome to tend your gardens and live in cowardice! I, however, will not!

"I may be a woman, but the gods also know me as a warrior!" she raged. "I refuse to let these conquering brutes bully their way onto Iceni lands! If you want to be their slaves, so be it! Go! Throw yourselves on their mercies! But as you are offering them your arse, know that I, a woman, fought while you decided to live in bondage!"

The men all exchanged looks. She had struck at their most vulnerable point: their pride. And well she knew it.

"What do you suggest, my lady?" her Chief Councillor, Irial, asked.

"We must take back what is rightfully ours," she stated. "We take Camulodunon."

The rest of the evening and into the night, they planned. Strategies were planned and routes were plotted. By morning, all had heard that Boudica would revolt against Rome.

Within two years, three outposts were sacked, over seventy thousand were killed, a Legion was annihilated, and even an Emperor feared her. Her!

A woman.

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Highlander OC
313 words
foreverwarrior: (Miranda (fearless))
{OOC: I know some community somewhere has posted a "fury" prompt, I'm just too lazy to look it up.}

October, 60CE
Near present-day Norfolk
Alias: Boudica

I stormed into the tent where my generals and council had gathered. The wounds to my back still oozed blood and the warm liquid trickled down between my buttocks. They (five generals, two advisors and a Druid) looked up from the war table around which they all stood. Braziers of flame illuminated their curious glances.

“My lady,” Chief Councilor Aedan greeted me.

I ignored him and the glances of the others. Instead, I stripped bare to the skin so all could witness the results of the flogging I had received at Roman hands. They fell silent as the welts and gashes were revealed. I slammed my hand on the war table, feeling the wood shudder beneath my wrath.

“I will have vengeance!” I shouted. “Not for myself, but for my daughters.”

“Your daughters?” the Druid asked, confused.

“Yes, Irial,” I hissed. “Both were raped. By Romans.”

Scowls formed at my blunt words. Each began to murmur to the others in angered tones. This was worse, oh so much worse, than the Romans taxing our people to build their temples on our holiest of grounds.

“Someone needs to be made an example,” I seethed. “I don’t care who, or how, but they will pay for this. I will have my vengeance, or I will die trying. Rome needs to learn that they cannot simply deflower my daughters without retribution. I want Nero himself to remember my name, and my fury. And I want every last putrid Roman to leave these lands and return to Gaul with terror in their hearts. Now go!

Each bowed their heads and murmured a “yes, my lady,” before leaving the tent until only the Druid remained. I shook my head, feeling my coppery locks sticking to the blood of my back. I did not want to know what the gods had in store for one hapless Roman whose only crime was his chosen occupation.

Quinnleigh Kincaid
Highlander OC
316 words

Mun note: This does not reflect on any other character(s). As far as she knows, the Roman could've been strung up by his balls to rot drawn & quartered.


foreverwarrior: (Default)

October 2010

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