plague village

in a lot of the older stories, the stake wasn’t what did the trick

a wooden stake didn’t kill a vampire, and any village plagued by the undead would be ruined to think so

all that the stake did was pin it down, freeze it in place. Some stories even specified the kind of wood, and/or that it had to be driven in with a single blow (two strikes? the vampire gets up and kills you)… others said it didn’t even matter whether it was a stake, a sword, or a bullet. In fact, a bullet to the heart was thought to be a finisher for a vampire where a stake wouldn’t do the job. But then, this was when having a bullet you could fire into a dead body was a new idea.

Restraining a vampire was the point of the stake.

What got rid of it? Decapitation followed by immolation. Set fire to the whole thing. Anything—insects, salamanders, etc.—that flees out of the fire is the vampire escaping.

Because in the end, vampires are a plague metaphor, or a plague in supernatural anthropomorphic form. And missing the smallest detail can ensure the contagion persists and spreads.

Dungeons & Dragons: Adventure Prompts

 1. Traveling through a particularly dense part of an elder forest, the adventurers come across eery, man-sized totems fashioned from animal bone, furs and hide looming over the roadside. Though dead and motionless, its almost as if there were eyes watching them from the dark, hollow sockets, following their every move.
They come across a small but heavily fortified village, a few simple cottages hiding behind a tall, wooden wall. The inhabitants wear grim and weary expressions on their faces and all are armed to the teeth. Salt is laid out in front of every doorframe and window board and talismans to ward off evil hang over every doorstep.
When questioned about the totems lining the road outside, the villagers seem to fall into complete and utter terror.
Then the lights of the village suddenly go out.


 3. A new religion has been founded and it is already passing pamphlets and sending heralds and priests to voice the new scripture out to the people. All’s well, you can never have enough gods to worship and blame for all your troubles in your life.
There’s only one problem.
Their new deity happens to be an ancient red dragon.

4. An elder entity from beyond space and time has been watching our adventurers for quite some time and finds their actions of chaotic heroics highly amusing. So much so, it decides to kidnap them and have them run through a dungeon of terror and geometric madness for its entertainment, promising three wishes to the victor.
Victor. Singular.

 5. An accident in an alchemists lab caused the many hundreds of potions stored inside to be shattered and their liquid contents to vaporize and spread and mingle in the form of a multicolored gaseous cloud that is now covering the town and infecting its inhabitants with random arcane effects.

6. A town painted in bloody smiles, an ivory altar rising from obsidian tiles
  Their eyes so hollow, as their god they follow
  To bring forth the lamb for the slaughter, all to appease to his eternal laughter
  They welcome you with open arms, and hide the bodies under the soil of their farms
  They wait for you to sleep so tight, then they slit your throat the same night.

7. The Vassa'li-Estate, once the proud and shining home of an old noble family, now stands abandoned and grey amidst its rotting lands.
Locust swarms surround the building and feast on the flesh of those poor foolish enough to set foot on the family estate, while the river that springs forth from a source on the Vassa'li lands has become as deadly toxin, poisoning the surrounding soil of the farmland, driving its inhabitants away.
They say the Vassa'li have broken the sacred laws of hospitality, and that the gods are punishing them for their transgression.
But what really lurks beneath the estate does not swear its allegiance to a divine curse…

8. They are there. You know they are. They creep behind the walls and crawl through the shadows of your home. They hide under your children’s beds, grinning and licking the drivel off their teeth.
Their arms are long and their hands are strong, as they take your child out of its crib and vanish into the night.
They dwell in the forests, under crooked roots and in dark leaved trees, their eyes lit with deceitful innocence and their smiles wide and sharp.
They wear crowns of thorns and berries, their faces as fair as a dying summer.
They are known as the lords and ladies. The Fair Folk. Fey or Fae.
They are beautiful. They are amicable. They are promising. They are gifting.
But they are not nice.
They are not good.
They are the Fair Folk, and they are coming.

9. Every night, people vanish. Old and young, strong and weak, poor and rich. They are robbed off the streets, out of the safety of their homes, always in the shadow of the night.
The only signs of a culprit even existing are the ripped off doors and foot-shaped craters in the stone roads and the cracks in the walls of the large, shovel-like hands heaving the creature’s way up the buildings.
The city does not dare to sleep. The guards too terrified and understaffed to deal with this creature. But one thing they know.
The creature is multiplying.

10. Ever since the Blood Moon rose above the village, madness has been spreading like a plague. Randomly does a villager stop dead in their tracks, gaze up at the dark-veined sky and laugh at the grinning moon, gouging out their eyes with their own fingers while screaming in a language foreign to this and any other world.
And the Blood Moon, it hangs there, watching and grinning and feasting on the madness, its insides bulging and boiling - ready to give birth to a new Child of the Far Elder Realms.

11. One of the party members comes across a mysterious goliath gentlemen, who offers them the opportunity of a lifetime, presenting them with a strange deck of cards and ushers them to pick a single card from it.

12. A rift to the Elemental Plane of Water opens in the middle of a green valley, flooding it and the surrounding landscape with currents of ocean water and spilling all sorts of elemental creatures forth into the world - and threatens to drown the entire land if it is not closed.

13. An ancient Vampire seeks final death - but his hunger for blood has corrupted his mind to such primal thoughts that he can barely even remember his name. In desperation, he sends a servant with notices into the nearby towns, putting an anonymous contract on his own head.

14. One of the town’s graves has upturned in the night - the grave of a man that died through a horrible accident. But now his course stalks the night as a revenant and seeks out vengeance against his murderer.

15. The heroes notice that curious posters have appeared throughout the land - and discover, that a playwright has apparently started to adapt their adventures for the stage! As they visit one of the plays, they discover that unfortunately, the playwright chose to ridicule a long-term enemy of the party in his adaptation, and now this enemy seeks grim satisfaction against the playwright.

16. A powerful Lich has awoken from his centuries-long slumber and seeks to further his arcane knowledge and magic experiments. The heroes hear of this, and rush to end this potential threat…
Only to discover that the Lich has apparently applied as a lecturer at an esteemed arcane university, and is thus as a member of this facility and protected by its sanctioned laws.

17. A glabrezu, a heinous treachery demon has taken on the shape of a deva and is guiding a solitary village down the path of corruption, disguised as wisdoms and commands of the gods.

18. A young humanoid approaches the party, face hidden under a cowl. They ask the adventurers in aid of finding their parents, whom they have lost sight of a long time ago. When asked to reveal their face first, the humanoid reveals the glowing eyes of a celestial and the dark, curved horns of a fiend.

19. The party is approached by a harvester devil, who promises them a wish if they aid him in claiming the overdue soul of a wizard, who plans to escape their contract by turning into a Lich.

20. A succubus has opened a lucrative business in the royal city, her customers including several high-ranking members of the court. Using her charm and skills of persuasion, the succubus goes on to sell information to both cults of demons and darchdevils.
Now, two representatives of both cults, one demon, one devil, approach the party and bid them to kill the succubus and extract whatever information she may have on the other cult.

21. A crafty bunch of imps have infested the holy temple of a good-aligned deity and start turning the residing friars and paladins against each other with their pranks, whispers and invisible shenanigans.

22. A high-ranking pit fiend appears out of nowhere in front of the party. But, instead of attacking, he goes on his knees and asks for redemption…

23.  A letter has been sent to bards and musicians throughout the land! An ancient copper dragon and self-called lover of the fine arts announces that he is about to host the greatest musical competition of all time: Whoever writes him the most beautiful song and performs it in front of him and the assembled crowd, shall receive a great, legendary artifact in the dragon’s possession.

24. Good is not soft. It is a fact that applies to many of the metallic dragons, as their sense of good and evil and the means necessary to do the one and end the other is vastly different from that of most mortals. A group of bronze dragons has therefor decided that the only way to achieve peace in the world, would be by subjugating the mortal races under their benevolent rule.

25. Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons. A well known idiom and wisdom that the common folk adhere to. Such an idiom apparently does not exist for the dragon’s themselves, as a young copper dragon believed it to be funny to steal two objects from the horde of two chromatic dragons and hide them in the other’s horde, laughing as the two chromatic drakes in their fury do battle over the landscape - and causing heavy casualties amongst the poor people that are helplessly stuck between them.

26. Storm clouds gather and brew above the endless desert. A mysterious, blue haired stranger appears in the city of a wealthy sultan and bends the knee, proposing for the sultan’s eldest child’s hand in marriage. As the sultan refuses, the mysterious stranger angrily reveals his true form, that of an ancient blue dragon and carries the sultan’s child off to his lair. A typical damsel in distress-quest, nothing new to hard-boiled adventurers…
But under the golden facade of the sultan’s palace hides rot and deceit, and the sultan’s child does not seem too eager to return to their father…

27. After hundreds of years, a terrible doom has awakened under the ice of the northern islands. A terrible white archdrake, a beast of primordial winter and elemental fury, its mere presence causes summer itself to turn into the coldest winter. Soon, it will spread its eternal blizzard all over the world.

28. A city under siege - a chromatic dragon of great size and strength furiously lashes out against the city walls. The citizens ask the adventurers to slay the beast, but when confronted, the dragon reveals its true intention: To save their child, held captive as an exotic pet by the king.

29. The Hobgoblins have decided to play against the rules of land-based warfare and have taken to the seas, building an entire armada of ships under the command of their new Warchief.
Yet, when  one vessel of their fleet is one day captured and the crew questioned, not only is the ship empty of loot or even rations besides of weaponry and the Hobgoblin soldiers seem to babble only of one thing:
“The Deep Lord.”

30. A drunken sailor comes up to the party and tries to sell them some trinkets and garbage he fished out of the sea. Next to broken compasses, an old cutlass and some sea-glass baubles however, there is a shining, round stone stone as big as one’s head, pearl-like and shimmering.
And there’s something moving inside.

31. On a travel over sea, a terrible storm breaks out, capturing the ship the party travels on and shattering it against the rocky shore of a small island near the mainland.
As the party awakes, not only do they find their means of travel and return destroyed, but the coast of the mainland steadily growing smaller in the distance, as the small island swims away with them on it.

32.  Hiring afoot! The captain of a harboring ship recently lost their crew after a falling out and is now seeking a replacement. The goal? A fabled island in the far east, where according to old documents the captain has discovered, an ancient temple to a forgotten deity lies in hiding…

33. There are rumors going about of a shipment of actual dragon eggs having appeared on the black market, sold by an individual known as Kaveth Dyr.

34. An infamous criminal has escaped from prison where he was awaiting his execution. The town guard warn the population that the criminal was once a study of the magic school of Illusions - meaning he could be hiding anywhere or as anyone.

35. One of the temples of the gods has been desecrated - offensive graffiti smeared in goat-blood on the wall, feces stains on the doorstep, and symbols of the deity’s divine rival are hung over its gate.
The priests are now seeking aid in finding the culprit, before the angry planetar that  is currently residing within the temple and was send by the deity starts rampaging through the town.

36. A rat plague is rampaging through the town - not rats as in tiny vermin, but bloody huge, spike-sprouting, rabid Dire Rats as big as dogs.

37. A rich noblewoman is looking into expanding her collection of ancient artifacts and scriptures - promising a grand reward for any adventurers willing to retrieve or sell such artifacts to her.
Such a shame that these adventuring parties often never return from the same ruin she always sends each team to…

38. Over the course of the last three weeks, several of the young women of the village have gone missing. The party is hired to look into the mysterious disappearances, only to see that the women weren’t being kidnapped, but saved…

39. A young wizard has set up shop in the village and is promptly being swarmed by the locals for all sorts of potions and spells and charms to aid them in their every-day business. At first business goes well, but very soon things change as the various charms and potions show weird, nasty side-effects on the villagers…

40. Ominous calls and whispers echo through the night, sending chills down the people’s spine and causing the hooting of nightly owls to shush. In the morning there is much uproar and panic, as the villagers find the old graveyard entirely uprooted - every single grave desecrated and empty.

41. Near a small fishing village, a coven of sea hags have made their home on a offshore crag rising out of the sea. In return for worship and a yearly tribute, they gift the village with their nets full of fishes and clams that carry pure pearls within. A fair trade…
Where it not for the fact that the tribute consisted of this year’s firstborn child.

42. A farmer reports strange happenings to occur on his farmstead - the crops are withering, in the night whispers sound from behind the walls and tiny footprints are found on the wooden floor that belong to no human or beast.

43. A traveling merchant comes through the village, carrying nothing on him but a small satchel on his side. The merchant gives no trade, but sells exactly what anyone asks him for from his bag, but never demands gold - only a favor.

44. A young priest of the pantheon’s sun god, eager to prove himself and the authority of the sun deity has come to the village and moved into the old church. From there, he begins a crusade against the ancient traditions of the village - such as the reverence of the woodland spirits, fey creatures and calling to the forefather’s spirits for guidance and started to tear down the old stone circles meant for bringing peace offerings to the woods- thus starting a deep, escalating rivalry between him and the village pellar.

45. Thirty years ago, a child went missing in the woods near the village. All searching was for naught, and the villagers had to hold the funeral rites over an empty grave.
Now, thirty years later on the night of an empty moon - the child stands on its parent’s doorstep once again, not aged a day, asking what’s for supper.

patron of whaling and gulls

The Call

General Disclaimer

AN: My contribution for Sakura’s birthday. Quickly jotted down on my extra long lunch break ^_^ Enjoy!

“This,” Sakura Uchiha grumbles as she drives her fist into the face of a particularly grimy bandit, “is not how I expected to spend my birthday.”

Sasuke makes a vaguely inquiring noise as he carries out a variation of his Shishi Rendan, sending his opponent flying through the air with several cracked bones.

“Never mind,” she mutters, ducking a clumsy kunai strike and using her attacker’s momentum to throw him over her shoulder.

The large band she and Sasuke have stumbled upon have been plaguing the nearby village for months, according to the inhabitants. They’ve take up residence on the only bridge in the area and have been charging travellers a toll to get by. Those who refuse have been violently robbed and left for dead, according to the warnings of several survivors.

It should have been the work of ten minutes to neutralise them and tie them up, but neither she nor Sasuke expected the majority of them to be former Kusa-nin. Even in this time of peace, missing-nin present a constant problem – especially those who made their livelihood pursuing war.

At least the Akatsuki had an actual purpose – these creeps just want to bleed people dry for their own benefit!

In the end, in the name of expedience rather than anything else, Sasuke traps them all in a genjutsu and Sakura rounds them all up. She’s kept the use of her strength to a minimum, not wanting to accidentally destroy the bridge they are trying to liberate.

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me: i don’t like deh, but it’s an important show to a lot of people and it will probably win best musical, so i’ll try to be nice about it

also me: dear evan hansen himself came into my home, killed my crops, plagued my village, and murdered my family on the fateful night of june 11, 2017, when it beat the masterpiece natasha, pierre, and the great comet of 1812 for best musical in the 71st antoinette perry award for excellence in broadway theatre



IchiRuki AU where Rukia is a victim of a zombie virus plague in a small village and Ichigo is a medic/scientist from the city looking for the cure

((I’m not creative so I’m sorry if it’s way too mainstream… BUT I JUST WANNA SEE A ZOMBIE AU OF THESE TWO, let me have my fun!! *rips heart out of chest*))

Mercy Brown

In 1892, Rhode Island farmer George Brown tragically lost his wife and two daughters to a mystery illness. Mary Senior, Mary Jr. and finally 19-year-old Mercy Brown had all died within years of each other, leaving poor George alone with his son, Edwin. When Edwin became ill with the same illness, (which we now know to be Tuberculosis), George became angry and thought that the only rational explanation was that of Vampirism. He, along with several other villagers, believed that his dead family were members of the undead and were maliciously plaguing the village with disease.

Armed with shovels and chisels, a gang of villagers led by Mr. Brown proceeded to dig up the graves. Nothing was left of the two Marys but dust and bones, so they turned to Mercy’s grave. Her body was remarkably well-preserved due to the cold weather, though the rabble of angry residents put this down to her being a vampire.

In order to cure Edwin from this dreadful disease, the peasants-turned-witch doctors hatched a foolproof plan; They cut out Mercy’s heart, burned it in a blessed fire, and then had Edwin drink the ashes. After all this, he still died two months later, and as superstition subsided Mercy’s remains were buried at the local Baptist Church in Exeter. Her gravestone is a popular tourist attraction, with many people paying their respects to the innocent girl every year.

Gaston: The Beast poisoned our water supply, burned our crops, and delivered a plague onto our houses!

Villagers: He did?

Gaston: No! But are we just gonn’ wait around until he does?!

Source: Spongebob Squarepants (submitted by @adarafaelbarbas)

(( @audioerf / @audreykare on Twitter has this awesome werecrow/werecat AU for Haikyuu!!, and some recent sketches she made feat. kuroken’s origin story sparked my inspiration, and I just had to write my interpretation of it XD I hope you enjoy it, Audrey!))

A deafening roar shakes the table in front of Kenma, causing his inkwell to tip over. He watches in dismay, as the ink spreads across his parchment. He frowns then, annoyance forming a headache that twitches above his eyebrow.

It took me two hours to draw that.

For the past three days, some creature in the woods beside his village has plagued them with growls and roars ranging from soft and pitiful to loud and threatening. Preliminary reports bring back a tale of a horrifying monster that appears to be stuck in some trees, and although everyone seems bothered by it, nobody has ventured to take care of it.

“It’ll probably eat us on sight!” one villager exclaims.

“Maybe if we send an army they’ll be able to defeat it!” another one suggests.

“Where are we going to get an army? Just let it be. It’ll starve itself eventually,” yet another says.

And on and on it goes. Kenma has grown tired of it. He hasn’t been able to sleep. His work continuously gets interrupted. Meditation is impossible.

Someone has to do something.

Gathering some meager supplies and picking up his wizard’s staff, Kenma sets for the woods the next morning. Those on the street call to him, warning him of the danger, telling him he’s a fool. Kenma ignores them all. If he dies, then maybe at least it’ll be quiet.

It doesn’t take him long to find the source of the noise, and he slows to a stop before it. Caught in the bramble and brush of the forest, sits a large beast. It’s easily three times larger than Kenma, towering above him. It has piercing golden eyes, a giant muzzle with rows of sharp, glistening teeth, and long thick fur covering its entire body. It resembles a giant wolf, or a lion … some massive animal-like creature.

Kenma stares, as it howls and roars and thrashes in the underbrush. Peering closer, Kenma can see why. It’s long fur has gotten tangled in the branches of three gnarled trees. Leaves surround the forest floor beneath the trees, the beast having shaken them off with its attempts to free itself.

As terrifying as the beast might’ve been under different circumstances, all Kenma feels in this moment is exasperation.

“You’re telling me all that noise was really just you throwing a temper tantrum?”

The beast stops abruptly, looking down at Kenma with a sharp gaze. Kenma suppresses a shiver at the power he feels emanating from the beast, but he can’t help but think that if this beast was all-powerful, it wouldn’t be stuck in a bunch of trees. It’s probably not as dangerous as it looks. So, squaring his shoulders, Kenma reaches into his knapsack and pulls out a large knife and sets to work.

At first, the beast wiggles around, attempting to free itself as Kenma hacks away at its fur.

“Stop that,” Kenma snaps. “You’re just going to make it worse.”

Surprisingly, the beast listens. It stops and simply watches, as Kenma carefully picks his way around the beast, finding the knots in the fur and sawing them away. He can hear the heavy breathing of the beast, feel its eyes on him, but he remains resolute in his mission. It hasn’t tried to attack him, so Kenma figures it’s safe enough, and he has his magic to defend against it if it decides to attack afterwards.

Finally, the last bit of tangled hair falls away. Kenma steps back slowly, as the beast moves to stand. Tucking the knife into his obi, Kenma grabs his staff, holding it in both hands in front of him. As the beast shakes itself free of the branches and takes a step forward, Kenma takes a step back, throwing up a ward between him and the creature.

The beast stops, tilting its head. It looks down at Kenma for a moment, before slowly lowering its head toward him. It opens its mouth, and Kenma doesn’t wait. He whacks the beast on the nose, grabs his knapsack, and sprints back toward the village.

His heart pounds wildly in his chest, as he reaches his home. He slams the door shut and locks it, not entirely sure why he’s shaking so badly. Nothing went wrong. In fact, everything went very smoothly. Perhaps too smoothly?

Not wanting to overthink it, Kenma draws himself a bath and gets ready for bed. In the blissful silence, he settles down for a long, well-earned nap.

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Quite a sight to see

We were staying in a village plagued by an unknown thing that was stealing women from their beds. During the night our gunslinger started sleepwalking.

Instead of waking him the rogue wakes up the sorceress and they begin to follow him out of the village and into the forest. They stopped to wake him as he approached the thing! Which turned out to be devil worshipping cultists.

The rogue then initiated combat leaving the gunslinger to fight in only his underwear with a metal arm for punching things and six bullets (kept in a ring of storing) now that really was a surprise.


In which Klaus is besotted with the new girl and Caroline wants to know how the hell she ended up in Viking times.

Okay, so this is my obligatory time travel drabble and I don’t really think there’s anything special to say about this one that would constitute an author’s note, but it’s definitely one of the fluffier things I’ve written, and kind of short too (at least, for me). Be warned, there is smut here and some Viking-esque misogyny as well but not so much, but if any of this offends you, I suggest you scroll past. Oh, and by the way, my Viking name for Mystic Falls was a result of searching through Old Norse dictionaries for the translation of ‘Mystic Falls’; from what I could tell, they didn’t have a word for ‘mystic’, so I just went with ‘mysterious’ as a close synonym. One last note, when I say ‘Klaus’, I’m mostly referring to our friendly neighbourhood Original Hybrid, and when I say ‘Niklaus’, I’m mostly referring to human Klaus. In circumstances where this is not true, it should be obvious which Klaus I’m referring to. Hopefully.

When Caroline’s eyes finally fluttered open, she almost wished that she was still knocked out, considering the anvil that was currently being dropped on her skull, again and again and again. A hand (female, by the feel of it) spanned her forehead and brushed her hair back against whatever her head was lying on. It was the touch that prompted her to pluck up the courage, push past the splitting headache and open her eyes. Only to scramble upwards and hurtle backwards.

“Hell.” She breathed, because Esther Mikaelson (dead Esther Mikaelson) was leaning over her.

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Crazy Collection of Characters

Figured my blog roll was overdue for an update, so here it is after a long delay!

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decisions in the witcher vs dragon age

dragon age: kill this person.. or let them live?
me: let them live!!
dragon age: well done! he is safe and sound! congratulations! you’re a great person, you saved someones life, and now everyone is happy! want to reload and see what would happen if you didnt?

the witcher: kill this person.. or let them live?
me: let them live!!
the witcher: well done! you have allowed a future mass murderer to continue terrorising villages, a plague has been released on all the kingdom, peoples crops will wilt and their farm animals will die, everyone hates you. want to reload? your last save for this decision was 20 hours ago good luck

  • Bisexual as heck
  • Has no social skills due to her upbringing
  • Is seen as weird and creepy for her interests
  • Wants to make friends regardless
  • Masks her insecurities and terrible self-esteem behind a cold exterior
  • Uses her magical skills to help people in need multiple times, occasionally utilizing the very methods that people derided her for taking an interest in
  • Does cute things like sneaking good luck charms into someone’s belongings to repay them for being kind to her
  • Tried to stop a plague that assailed a village, only for people to believe she was the one who caused it, upon which she devoted herself to creating a cure for said plague
  • Initially afraid her love interest might think she’s gross for being in love with a person of the same gender as her
  • Has prodigious Seer skills, that make her very popular with fellow female army members
  • Goes to tea parties with other girls in the army, even though it takes some convincing for her to attend.  Seriously, how cute is that??
  • Develops as a character in her supports with the female Avatar, whilst also not losing her eccentricity
  • Suffered a traumatic, near-death experience which changed her personality when young
  • Is currently older than her father due to time shenanigans, though despite his childish tendencies and her own attitude, loves him dearly and yearns for familial affection
  • Utterly loyal to people she loves 
  • Self-taught in the art of divination, though she can also branch out to oh, this little thing like raising the dead
  • A true determinator when dealing with things she actually cares about
  • Hilariously deadpan
  • Queen of snark
  • Claims not to care about how people see her, though she has walled herself so far from others that it deeply affected how she perceives them as being out to get her
  • Actually asks someone to teach her how to laugh without being creepy. I cannot handle this, my gosh.
  • Mall goth
  • Is amazing and I love her
Writing Prompt #126

When plague struck the village, we had expected nothing more than death and suffering. Somehow, things actually ended up better than before.

Iron Heart 4

And another update!

Thank you @kiss-me-khaos and @aya-eisen for beta-testing this!

Some pern based terminology; Glows = glowing shrooms. A’reus = worthless, drunken bum —


Please leave a review if you liked it! :D

Makarov loved a good party; there was usually lots of merriment, singing and dancing and good food with the best wine available. He loved watching his Weyr having a good time, despite the hard times they would experience sometimes. Especially now, with the Rogue riders plaguing the villages and haunting those whom escaped them. He could see it in his own people, the quick looks of pity to the survivors and flashes of fear that the rumors brought. He desperately wanted to wipe that fear away, and see them smile in peace. But to say that it was a problem he could solve easily was foolish, almost imbecilic.

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