The Gathering of Thingol's Kin (ATTN: Menegroth Reborn)
The landing bay 487th of the Aelosian Craftworld remained eerily silent, although it was fully crowded of the supossed "welcome" party arranged by the Everqueen to greet the representatives of Menegroth Reborn, the lost relatives from beyond the stars. Hundreds of guards stood in perfect and motionless formations, and dozens of diplomats and courtiers, dressed in their best outfits, waited eagerly among the top cream of the aelosian nobility. Sages and scholars revised their notes, although everyone, everyone remained in ultimate silence.
In the center of the huge gathering of people, the Princess Aliria watched and waited the transport that woulod bring her long lost and forgotten sindarin kin to her homeland, lost in the thoughts about the importance of this moment.
Finally, the aelosian dropship, decorated with grey designs and the blazons of the Sindarin, landed in the vast and massive pad, enough to host a small frigate of the aelosian navy. The hatches opened and the Menegroth delegation came out, drawing the stare of every soul in the landing bay.
But not a voice of greeting, not even a single clasp welcomed them, still the crowd remained silent. Just the eyes of the Princess Aliria, her silvery garment glowering even in the midst of the elegance of her peers, drilled through the entire hall to meet the eyes of the one she was expecting, of the one that, as her, descended from the purest blood of the Sindar...
Tar-Emerwen Palinde Aranel Ethuiltari nos Thingol stepped from the dropship first. By nature, she interpretted the silence to indicate gravity rather than hostility. It was often the way with her people. Palinde almost immediately adopted the same air, serenely moving towards Aliria without turning her head left or right to survey the impressive crowd. Palinde herself was dressed in shimmering mithril armor and bore the shining sword of her father at her side. Her luxurious dark hair hung nicely, though she wore it shorter than was the habit among Elves.
To Palinde's right and three paces behind her was General Eruantalon Kememmótar. The Elven man stood a head higher than his queen and wore a finely polished dress uniform. His light brown hair was neatly combed and he carried himself with a rigid, martial stride. Like Palinde, he kept his eyes ahead and resisted the urge to take in the scenery.
To Palinde's left and exactly as far behind as Kememmótar walked Lord Encaitar nos Elmo. The lord was fairer in complexion than the general, but certainly not more so than the queen. His features were elegant and refined and his eyes were ageless, shining with a wisdom born of a truly long life. He, too, was dressed in fine mithril armor and carried an ancestrol sword.
Right behind Kememmótar in precedence walked Colonel Lastande Erunyauve. The blonde Elf maiden wore a dress uniform like that of Kememmótar and betrayed only a slight hint of less discipline. She allowed herself a brief glance about the room before following the others and adopting their grave demeanor.
Behind Encaitar strode Doctor Erunámo Tarar, who looked around slightly longer than Erunyauve before falling into line. Tarar was dressed in formal civilian wear, resplendent in its own way.
When Palinde approached Aliria, she met her gaze evenly and spoke in Doriathrim, which is arguably a separate language and, at the least, a very archaic dialect of Sindarin. "I greet you, blood of my blood, after the passing of many long years." The four other Elves in Palinde's retinue bowed elegantly to Aliria.
A really uncomfortable silence followed Palinde's words, and noone even made a move or a sound, expecting the reaction of the Princess to the words of her relative standing in front of her. It was without doubt a tense moment, everyone expecting to react according the words of Aliria.
Finally, after what seemed to be an eternity, Aliria bowed, deeply and profusely, to Palinde, as low as her back and neck allowed her. Her motion was slow and careful, taking care of each detail, her body moving like in slow motion, with a grace and delicacy unparalleled in her entire Empire. Her hands, her neck, her legs, each inch of her body showing a marvelous harmony, coordination and exquisite perfection. Then, as a wave of a furious yet marvelous sea, the crowd went down to imitate her ruler and beloved Princess, every elf in the huge crowd moving at unison to show their courtesy to the visitors. Forced by aelosian etiquette to bow even lower than their Princess, many uncapable or not flexible enough to emulate Aliria's motion placed a knee to the floor, placing their heads lower than the Sindarin Jewel.
Then Aliria rose, and as one, the crowd rose with her. The most important nobles of each of the Great Houses of the Sindarin Empire were flanking the Princess, every one of them with their stare fixed in Palinde. Most of them were ancient elves, elves that could trace their lineage, or even their life and deeds, to the most important counselors, warriors, artists and sages of the ancient doriath of legend. The first was the sinister ArchDuke of the Phaelos House, hidden beneath his black and hooded robe, standing next to the proud and gleaming figure of the Hyral Prince, clad in his silver and blue wraithbone armor, Aranrúth, the sword of Thingol resting quietly in his hip. Then came the small and thin figure of Aleinna Cúthalion, her cute glasses above her nose, dressed in strange and weird, although formal, human clothes, next to the tall and impressive form of Helios Mablung, the bigger and most muscular elf than many elves could ever see, showing proudly the axe of his blazon painted in the breastplate over his broad and huge chest. The colorful and smiling Great Minstrel of the Daeros House, dressed in her long and gleaming green dress with a parrot as colorful as her dress in her shoulder, turned to stare at the slithe and exotic face, showing her eternal wry grin, of the Mistress of Mystery, the drow Baroness of the Eöl House, and the tall and serious Viceroy and Duke of the D'nan, the raven black haired ruler of the Mars holdings. Finally two elves, male and female, dressed in the most purest and luxurious golden outfits kept smiling at Palinde and her companions, Lady Celestrianna of the Golden Beak, Imperial Chancellor and Master of Courtiers, and Marquis Lórindel of the House of Merchants. Every one of them were amazed to see the traces of ancient lineage that both Palinde and each of their companions showed in their outfits and appearance.
"Be welcome to the Home Beyond the Stars, Tar-Emerwen Palinde Aranel Ethuiltari nos Thingol. I am Princess Aliria D'Hyru nos Elurin nos Dior nos Lúthien nos Thingol, daughter of our beloved and unique ruler the Everqueen Aelosia Elurin nos Dior nos Lúthien nos Thingol, Heir to the throne of the Sacred Sindarin Empire of Aelosia, which encompasses all the lands of the sindarin far beyond the stars, or at least that we believed before this joyous occassion. Be welcomed to the halls of the sindar, designed by the forgotten Eldar of the stars and inherited by our kin, welcome to the place that we earned through our blood, nurtured with our tears and transformed through our sweat to emulate our own, ancient home of Doriath. It is a pleasure to meet you, Thingol's kin, Daughter of Lúthien", were Aliria's words, pronounced in the same Doriathrim dialect that Palinde used, very similar to the own aelosian dialect with the exception of the eldar terms and slight accent than the aelosians adopted after spending centuries amongst them.
On a side note....This is some additional information for you, both writeen and graphic:
More information about the Sindarin Empire of Aelosia and the Noble Houses of the Empire.
Standard appearance and wardrobe of Aelosian citizens
Typical interior of the domes of the Aelosian Craftworld
Princess Aliria nos Elurín, Sindarin Jewel and Heir to the Aelosian Throne
Palinde remained perfectly calm and perfectly even during the entire long silence. She held Aliria's gaze with a friedly yet intense gaze of her own. When Aliria bowed, Palinde returned it, moving with a measured grace, a warrior's grace. Her people bowed again, lower than their queen.
Palinde allowed her grave expression to be broken by a smile for the first time. "Your honor me, counsin. But, in truth, I had no lands until very recently. Long have I wandered, through blood and turmoil, among the lost Elves of the Wide World. But that time is over."
She gave some attention to her companions for the first time as well. "Your Highness, allow me to present General Eruantalon Kememmótar, Lord Encaitar nos Elmo, Colonel Lastande Erunyauve, and Doctor Erunámo Tarar. They are all trusted advisors of mine."
The group stood, now relaxed, though still sombre as befit the great occasion. They waited the chance to meet Aliria better and for Palinde's approaching audience with the Everqueen.
"Please let me introduce the aelosian nobility, those around me are the chiefs and heads of the Aelosian Noble Houses. I hope they will have enough time to tell you your names and titles accordingly to our custom" said Aliria still using her most formal tone of voice."It is a pleasure to meet such a dintinguished group of sindarin elves. It makes me proud to know that such people still exists".
"You can have lands if you want to. If the rumors are true, you are one of the older and closer to Thingol's kin elves in existence, without counting my mother, that is. All you need is to ask your place in our Empire and it will be given to you. even your people look more like pure and true sindarin than us, the aelosians", said Aliria, shifting her voice to a sad, depressive tone. Her words had a deep impression in those around her, drawing gasps of many throats nearby, horror and angry expression quickly appearing in the faces of most nobles and courtiers. Aliria just lowered her face, looking at the tip of her own feet as she did so.
"Nothing to be ashamed or angry at. It is just the truth. Tar-Emerwen Palinde Aranel Ethuiltari nos Thingol carry that name for some reason, and it is nothing to fear, our true relatives have arrived to teach us how to return to the roots that we left behind centuries ago", she continued, now raising her head to look at Palinde with a pair of cristalline and magical tears in the edge of her eyes. "Because for that you came here, right, cousin?", she finished, giving the last word a more marked sad, hopeless tone.
Quickly, as she rose her head, several nobles reacted, in really different ways. The Phaelos Duke spitted top the floor at his feet, turned and left, visibly affected even as his face was still hidden beneath his hood. the Prince Kithail Hyral opened his eyes wide and placed a hand over Aliria's shoulder, turning her towards him and embracing her protectively with just an arm, hiding Aliria's face, as his other hand quickly posed over the hilt of the sword of the first sindarin king, looking at Palinde with a despiteful expression in his eyes. ArchDuquess Paelisi and the Cúthalion Marquise almost ran like the wind to place themselves between Aliria and Palinde, beginning to explain and calm the situation.
"Princess Aliria is not feeling good right now", were the first words of the Paelisi noble, in a calm and highly diplomatic expression.
"She is feeling ill lately, and her emotional state isn't exactly the best", marked right after that the Marquise Cúthalion, nodding to the other noble.
"I'm sure she will recover soon, a tragedy happened some time ago, a horrible tragedy, and I'm afraid she hasn't recovered from the impression", continued the Imperial Chancellor, extending a hand to Palinde.
"But I'm sure she will recover soon. Anyway the Everqueen is anxious to know you, and she is waiting you at the palace. If you're so kind to follow me, I will lead you all to her presence in a minute, I'm sure the Princess will be just ok at the moment of the gathering and will join us", continued the Marquise Cúthalion, visibly nervous but maintain a steady tone of voice gesturing Palinde and the other visitors to follow her to a big portal at the side of the landing bay.
((OOC: Done with Aelosia on mIRC))
Palinde sighed at Aliria, her formality breaking into what seemed to be quite genuine concern, before stepping into the Aelosian audience chamber. For this, Palinde wore her formal mithril armor and carried her father's sword shining at her side. As she approached the the throne she bowed ninety degrees. "Greatest Queen of our people, your niece greets you."
Aelosia was sitting in the huge wraithbone throne created by the Eldar farseer lords of the Craftworld thousands of years ago, and pierced Palinde's eyes with her furious and powerful stare for a moment, before rising and giving Palinde the honor of a slight bow of her head."Welcome again to the lands of your brothers and sisters, Palinde nos Elured. Please be welcomed to our empire, and in our lands I hope you can find happiness"
Palinde arched a brow ever so faintly the words. "Your Majesty? I am glad to be reunited with my family. However, I may not permanently stay upon the Craftworld. I have a duty to hundreds of millions of Sindar and other Quendi on Earth."
"I am Aelosia, Everqueen of the Sindar of this Craftworld. Elurin I was in the Middle Earth when the world was young, that was how they called me. But then why you cannot stay at least for a while? You are a fresh remainder of what we were, please stay with us, at least for a year more or less"
"I can stay for awhile. It gladdens my heart and soul to be here and to gaze upon my Aunt that I had never before known, the sister of my grandfather."
Aelosia barely smiled, showing a predatory look. "Everything for the blood. Is it true the rumors about your lineage?"
"How many steps are you removed from my brother, fair Palinde?"
"Two. I am his son's daughter, glorious Everqueen."
"What happened to your father, Palinde, in all these years of strife?"
"He was slain three years ago by human hands."
"By his own kin’s hands....So sad. I'm sorry to hear that. So many
of us are lost...but that makes you the closer to Thingol after me, Palinde of the New Menegroth"
"I am the eldest daughter of his eldest son's eldest son. Were I not, I would not have been so bold in naming my lands."
"I see. Then you will be the eldest and the closer to the blood of the Singollo after I disappear"
Aelosia quickly moved her hand in a dismissive gesture, sending the rest of the attendants and the advisors out of the throne room, remaining silent until everyone except for Palinde and the Everqueen "Yes, disappear. See, what you look at right now is just a borrowed form, a temporal body. My real form was lost a millennium ago, when my soul was separated from my body, in the process that most of us use to call death"
"Then I will remain here for all the time you have remaining. It breaks my heart to lose my flesh and blood so soon after finding her again."
"I can leave whenever I want, but I am growing tired of this life and the boundaries of this form of existence...I am just waiting until I find a suitable heir to take this throne and command my people"
"You have Aliria."
"Aliria is not even a pure Sindarin, her blood is tainted. She's also too young, and she lacks experience. I'm trying to fix that, but it would take years, even centuries to finish her training"
"Dior himself had human blood in his veins."
"Human blood is another matter. I have Maiar, elven and human blood in mine, and I am proud of my three different heritages, but the case of Aliria is different. You wouldn't understand"
"If you are asking what I think you are, I already have the throne of Menegroth. I could not, in good conscience, take another."
"You wouldn't take the throne of Menegroth or the Aelosian one...you would take the throne of your grandfather, the throne of the New Doriath! The throne that is truly your heritage. You would be the true hope of the Sindarin, the true descendant of Singollo, the first leader of all Sindarin since the first age. You would...reunite all the Sindar under your banner, you could even rename the Empire as you wish"
*Palinde considered this for a long moment. "I do not wish to deprive Aliria of her throne."
"You're not depriving her of a throne. She acknowledges me as her superior. Why she wouldn't do the same to you? After all, she is a noble of my own house, and she will know her place when the time comes. I made her Princess, and I can take that place from her"
"Doriath, in its time, was not an Empire but a refuge. It was the one place in all the Earth free from the tainted touch of the Black Enemy of the World, a hall of safety and justice where Elves, Men, and all free people could seek refuge from the darkness. The Sindar of Menegroth have been chased and persecuted and tormented for millenia. We have at last been given safety and we would offer it again to others. I want to rebuild a haven for the world, a new Guarded Wood, a new Thousand Caves. Aelosia too is a great thing. A sword of righteousness, bound to the friends of the Light in many alliances and projecting power through a mighty Star Empire."
"Take refuge? Hide from the shadows?. Yes, we did that. Yes, we tried to hide, we tried to get away of everyone and look for our happiness alone. And what were the results of that? Seems like you know about history, then, tell me. What happened to Doriath, to the mystically protected perfect refuge, to the shelter of the first age?"
"That is how I see the future of the Sindarin people. A united people with two arms, one a sword and one a shield, ruled by two queens. And I am not speaking of hiding or running."
Aelosia changed her tone of voice to a cold, spiteful wind of hisses and words. "You don't need to feel generous with Aliria. That eldar sibling won't even appreciate it"
"You just called me the hope of the Sindarin people, Aelosia. You offered to entrust me with the future of my people. I am a daughter of the line of Elwe Thingol and a born queen of the Sindar. I have fought and bled for my people, been tortured for my people, known hunger and cold and pain for my people. I can say with no false modesty that I have born the responsibilities of my birth for all of my five millennia of life. If you can trust the future of the Sindarin people to me, then I ask you also to trust my vision for that future. It is not a vision lightly spoken but the result of much thought and much prayer to the Valar. And it is one I have the right to have by both blood and effort."
"And then, Daughter of Lúthien, What is your foresight? Enlightment the mind of this living relic. Don't come here and tell me of that....How did you called it? Four armed queen? Tell me about your own foresight, the foresight that grandmother Melian gave us, her childer? Tell me your part of the prophecy"
"Much is hidden to me still. Yet, I see myself on a throne set in a thousand glittering caves, a recreated version of Menegroth. I see myself forging a place in the modern world where no enemy shall ever come with strong defenses and the brave warriors of our people. I see an intimate link with the Empire where all Sindar may claim citizenship in both. I see the Sindarin people rising to new and greater glory in a Commonwealth of Sindarin States."
"Ambitious is your vision, then. Ambition is an emotion I like"
"Then, now that matters of state are settled, might I simply spend time with my aunt?" She smiled gently.
No one knows exactly what happened over the next hour except for Palinde and the Aelosia. It was seen that two petitioners entered the throne room and came out looking somewhat confused but with their case settled. Some time after they left, Palinde left the courtroom alone. She was rigidly composed and gave no visible sign of distress, yet she insisted on being shown to her guest residence immediately. This created some confusion as it had been planned for the Everqueen to personally escort the visiting monarch. Palinde did manage to secure transport and made the journey in total and utter silence.
Palinde stepped off the train, looking at the lodgings provided. She headed for the building. The house was a luxury manor placed inside one of the best cared domes of the Craftworld, surrounded by a garden resembling the old lands of the Sindarin, the forest near Menegroth. The huge door was open and flanked by guards, and as Palinde arrived, her companions were already waiting for her at the door. Palinde nodded in passing to them, going to the master bedroom and closing the door, locking it. She sat down on her bed and began to sob. After a half an hour or so, a soft knock echoed in Palinde's door, a shy, quiet touch of a hand over the other side of the door of her chambers. "Come." she said tersely, sitting up.
The door opened, and revealed the short, slim and delicate figure of Princess Aliria at the other side of the door. "Tar-Emerwen Palinde Aranel Ethuiltari nos Thingol. I am here to talk with you. I believe you deserve an apology for my improper conduct at your greeting"
"I saw no impropriety in it."
Aliria tried to manage a smile and failed, and stared right into Palinde's eyes. "A Princess is not allowed to cry in public, even more after welcoming one of the most important people she has ever met"
"I have been crying too, Princess Aliria." She rose to her feet.
"You were in your room, after containing yourself, like a capable and wise ruler should do"
"I must realize I lack both the wisdom and determination to control myself and control my own feelings"
Palinde smiled a little. "Have a seat."
"Don't worry, I am comfortable this way"
"Very well." Palinde looked around thoughtfully. "I feel we should have a lot to say to one another."
"I do not know what you mean", answered Aliria, shaking her head a bit and lowering her head to the ground. "Nothing prepared me for this"
"It is a bit..surprising, isn't it?" Palinde commented.
"It is...you came out of my dreams and fantasies, like a fairy tale come true. You have make myself and my people to be embarrassed of ourselves with your perfection"
"Perfection?" Palinde laughed lightly. "I am hardly perfect. Look at all you've been able to create for your people. I'm nothing next to it."
“We didn't create these things, we stole them from the eldar, they taught us how to use their technology"
"The Teleri are a race of the Eldar."
"Not the Eldar as you know it. I talk about a mysterious kind of aliens that lived through the stars and were somewhat akin to our elvenkin. They were masters of stellar advanced technology, and taught us their secrets"
Palinde nodded a little. "That does sound...interesting."
"But they disappeared centuries ago, and left us with their secrets. We adapted ourselves to them, and adopted them to our own life style"
"Aliria, I am proud to call you kin. I want you to know that."
"Why should you do that, you doesn't even know me. You don't know who I am, you probably haven't heard of my stupid mistakes and silly wrongdoings"
"I did not keep my people alive by being a poor judge of character."
"I guess so. You look like a wonderful ruler to your people and a smart and wise person. I don't doubt of your capabilities anyway"
Palinde smiled gently. "Thank you. But there has been enough talk between the Queen of the Menegrothrim and the Heir of the Aelosians. Now might there be talk between Aliria and Palinde, between cousins?"
Aliria sighed, with a sad expression in her face "Everything to make our guest happy. What do you want to talk about, Queen Palinde, or Empress Palinde"
"Just Palinde in private. We are blood." She sighed a little.
"That doesn't answer my question, fair judge of dilemmas"
"I can tell you that I was actually rather nervous meeting you." She smiled shyly. Palinde studied Aliria with deep curiosity.
"I cannot find a reason, I am just the Princess of this Empire by the will of the woman that adopted me. I wasn't of the Royal House, only thanks to the fact that Everqueen Aelosia adopted I was allowed to belong to the House of Dior and be the Heir to the throne. Why I did make you nervous?"
"Because you have lived as a noble of our people while I have lived most of my life as a hunted animal with thoughts only for the next day of survival."
"You are talking like my mother, looks like you are really similar"
Palinde frowned slightly. "Your mother...I...Aliria...I'm not sure what to say. By rights, we are cousins. We should be as close as any two women and yet I have never met you before. I am not sure what to say."
"Me neither, I just came here to apologize for my weakness and lack of right behavior of before"
Palinde impulsively and somewhat nervously gave Aliria a tight hug. "Cousin."
Aliria looked very nervous, and didn't reacted at all for a pair of seconds before placing her arms around Palinde. "Is there...Is there something wrong....Pa...Palinde?"
"Is there a reason I shouldn't embrace my cousin?"
"No...It is just that...that breaks the formalities. We...we here don't believe in that kind of....."
"Do you want me to stop?"
"No, it's not that. I just want to understand the reasons motivating your conduct"
"My heart, Aliria."
"I have lived my life ruled by my heart, and that hasn't helped me"
"I didn't come here to play court games. You're my cousin."
"Here in Aelosia, everything is a court game. I tried to change that and failed"
"I am not an Aelosian."
"But I am, I was born one. Even as I do not like it"
"Please don't play games with me."
"I don't like those games, neither am I playing them here. Do you think it is my desire to deceive you?"
"No, but I think you are keeping your distance."
"I am trying to"
"Then why did you come here?"
Aliria with wet eyes looked directly at Palinde's face, and finally embraced her with a warm and close reaction, after all, Aliria was known between her people to be the warmer and most emotional of the entire lot "To apologise, I already told you, and to know Palinde, the maiden, and not Palinde, the Queen"
Palinde held her tight. "Tell me of yourself?"
"Just tell me, what do you want to know?"
"I do not know where to start, Palinde, I am a young elf, but many things happened between the day I was born and today"
"Are you very spiritual?"
"I do believe in the Valar, and in something that wait us to the west. I pray to Oromë and to all those high spirits that protect our people"
"Do you ever pray directly to Eru?"
"Sometimes, in times of strife"
"Are you betrothed?"
"I am engaged to the Menelmacari Prince, Maglor nos Feänor, son of Lady Sirithil, but he hasn't shown interest on me anymore, I think I am too small and insignificant for such a great man as him"
"Or too great and beautiful for such small eyes as his, cousin?"
"That isn’t news, anyway. I seem to be invisible to most men I like"
"I do not know that, maybe he has the answer"
Palinde sighed a little. "Can you keep a secret?"
"Too many secrets I already keep in my heart, but I can keep another one safe, I guess"
"The noblemen in my entourage were all very attracted to you. They hid it well because they are trained to and because you are too far above their station for them to act on such thoughts. But I could tell from having known them long years."
"But they would never marry me, so I am still damned to be alone due to the fact of being a Princess. Now do you see why I hate this title?"
"At least you have a fiance, however absent. I am painfully single."
"Because you want to. I spend mostly all the time alone, with just my dogs and my good friend Kithail as company. And even so, he usually is away busy with his own assigments"
"Now you have a cousin as well."
"But you will go away as well"
"Well, I do have a country. But we will stay close. I promise not to ignore you."
"Are you going to keep that promise?"
"My word is my bond."
"I will accept it. Then I can count you as a friend?"
"We are friends, then. What do you want to do?, or do you want me to just give you a surprise?"
"A surprise would be nice."
"Want to come to my place, so I can surprise you?"
Palinde rose easily. "Certainly."
Aliria also rose, and as soon as she did so she closed her eyes and a faint blue halo appeared around her head, illuminating her hair and bringing a shower of electric blue sparks all around her "Let's go" Palinde followed. Soon they arrived to Aliria's palace, a simple yet marvelous palace entirely covered by green grass and careful breed bushes. The silouettes of trees made entirely of crystal stood proud around the huge building, decorated like a chapel of some sort
Palinde looked around, smiling. "It is lovely, cousin."
"It is artificial. That's not grass, and those aren't true trees. It is like the frozen image of something lost even before I was born" said Aliria with a sigh.
Palinde shook her head. "I will take you to see trees."
"Oh, I have seen them, many times, in several places away from here"
Suddenly a shadow placed them under its darkness, hiding them from the strange yet comfortable warm and light of the artificial sun of the dome, it was a bit menacing, although Aliria, as she felt the shadow, just said..."Tell me, cousin, Have you ever flight over something alive?"
Aliria just opened her arms, just as the powerful humming sound of a pair of huge wings almost shocked the ground and agitated the wind around them into a small hurricane. "I do it all the time, it's your chance to share it with me"
"I will gladly." The last words of Palinde were lost in the air as she was snatched, firmly and hard and yet gently by what looked to be a giant claw, sending her into the air and dragging her into the powerful flight of the creature who owned it. Palinde blinked, looking over at Aliria