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The airship fields were busy, in one sense, but quiet in another. Illiserev's ports and fields, were active places, due to the immense amount of trade that came along with it, but by now, it was late at night, and the only people moving were the graveyard shift workers or the express airships that had to resupply without any rest for the crew. And thus, even though there were sounds of moving, lifting, grunting, and shouting, it was a din that was fainter than normal. Plumes of fire shot out at random intervals, while a constant 'film' of magical energy pervaded the environment. But despite the number of airships present, there was not one sign that indicated that the destination was Talze Utera. It was to be expected. The only airships that generally went to Talze Utera were for diplomatic relationships between less monstrous monsters, military assignments to hunt down particularly dangerous monsters, or for those crazy bastard knights that wished to go to Talze Utera to train themselves, so they may better protect their masters. Most of them rarely last as long as they plan to.
"A curse! Can you believe it?! A curse!!"
Lilian seethed in a hushed tone, they had spent an entire hour trying various cures before Meredith finally realized what had happened to Lilian. She extracted a dusty old book and showed her exactly the type of curse she had and explained to her the mechanics of curses. The three Illiserevians were walking in a close group through the airship fields that were the hub that connected almost all of the world together.
"Yes, I can as I just diagnosed it."
Meredith whispered to the young woman who was standing three feet away from them. Meredith was an old woman and she was not the adventurous alchemist that she used to be, traveling to remote jungles just to find a rare type of fungi. The only way to have a curse broken was by having another witch dispel it. As fussy, demanding, and irritating that Lilian was she still cared for her and wanted her young mistress to be healed. She would have to go to Talze Utera as no right minded witch would live in Illiserev, they would be burnt at the stake within a week.
"Still! What have I done to anyone?!"
Lilian stated as she fanned herself, her heels clicking against the ground with each step that they took. She was giving off a faint glow again, fearing that her shadow would appear and that someone would step on it. Meredith was shocked when she realized what Lilian had, as most people would be going insane by now. She hated to think it but it was probably the fact that Lilian was already so full of negativity and spite already that she was able to somewhat properly function with such an incredible amount of negativity and mental anguish spinning through her.
The trio looked around at all of the different airships, trying to find just one that was headed to the wilds of Talze Utera. "What about the Shimmering Phoenix?"
Lilian asked softly, wincing as more of the pain returned. "Milady, that's a luxury ship - there's no way that they would have any trips to where you need to get to."
Meredith responded back quickly before her eyes zeroed in on something.
It was a peculiarly battle-worthy airship. It was a sharp contrast to all of the fancy looking pleasure ships. Along with its clearly recently added weapons it had a swarm of people working to resupply the air vessel. Meredith quickly told Lilian and Jean to stay put before hurrying toward what seemed to be the captain. He was a middle-aged, tattooed half-beast and seemed to have a bored expression plastered onto his face. Youngsters were zipping back and forth past him with supplies to get the vessel into the air once again.
"What can I do for you?" The man asked with a hint of suspicion in his voice as he eyed the old woman in front of him.
"Where is your ship headed?"
Meredith asked, getting straight to business. He laughed a hearty laugh before speaking up again "And why do you wish to know?"
"I'm interested in purchasing a room."
The elderly woman stated. The guard eyed her up and down, her graying hair was tied in a tight bun and her glasses were on the bridge of her nose with her loose fitting robes covering her slipper clad feet. She looked the farthest thing from business savvy or intimidation. Right before he immediately spat out no he looked right behind her and saw two young blonde individuals.
The male seemed to be nobility, he couldn't really tell but when it came to the one right next to him it was obvious where she stood. What she was wearing was laughable, the young woman was wearing an extremely elaborate and poofy white dress as if she was about to get married. She was shimmering in the darkness and looked like a literal diamond to steal. She had on a light blue cloak and hood over herself as if that would hide the gigantic gown of the dress or the fact that she was glowing. There was no doubt that she came from money and he smiled softly to himself, although he was sure there was no way that these three were headed to the place the ship was headed.
"We're headed to Talze Utera, which I highly doubt-"
"Let my mistress and her companion on, name your price."
Meredith quickly intercut catching the man off guard.
He was just a guard, hired as defense against any types of threats but that didn't mean he couldn't make a quick buck. There were a few rooms that could be spared that were just being used for supplies that could easily accommodate a cot.
"Well, if you insist..."
"Oh my... You don't..."
Lilian glanced over at Jean and looked at him worriedly "You don't really think she's trying to get me to ride on that... thing. It looks like it could crash at any moment!"
The sorceress complained before her body started shaking in pain for a few seconds. She looked up at her healer and watched as the woman waved them over. "C'mon."
She told the boy next to her and quickly walked forward, glancing over her shoulder she saw Jean quickly walking behind her with her bags bundled in his arms.
"It was a pleasure doing business with you." The guard stated as Lilian watched Meredith drop a hefty looking bag of gold coins into the man's hand. "Giselle will show you the way to your room." He added quickly, gesturing to the young looking girl who was standing by the entrance to the air vessel.
"Oh, Meredith this doesn't seem as if it has the nicest rooms. Are you sure you're going to be okay? I mean you do have back problems..."
Lilian stated, glancing between the guard and her healer.
Meredith inhaled deeply before looking back at Lilian, "I'm sorry Lily but I can not go with you."
she whispered softly and closed the distance between her and Lilian. The elderly woman cupped the cursed girl's cheek and smiled softly at her. "Wh-what? B-but how will I talk to a witch on my own? I don't even know wh-where to..."
Lilian started as she felt tears starting to come to her, her mood was incredibly unstable because of the curse - even the smallest thing was setting her off and amplified at unbelievable levels.
The old woman started and looked between Lilian and Jean who had walked over "you are the most resilient and determined young woman I have ever known in my entire life Lily."
She smiled as Lilian started dabbing away at her tears with her handkerchief. "And you young man,"
Meredith whispered to Jean who had several bags bundled up in his arms "Please keep my Lily safe. I promise to you that when you two return healthy and unharmed that you will be honored in ways that you cannot even imagine. The king will personally commend you, I swear that to you."
She gave him a very serious look before turning back to Lilian.
Giselle, the young girl from earlier, took some of the bags that Jean was holding and led him into the airship. Tears were still streaming down Lilian's face and she was cursing herself for looking so stupid. She wondered if she would be crying if she wasn't cursed, then again if she weren't cursed she would probably be asleep in her bed right now.
"Lily, I have the utmost faith in you."
Meredith whispered and hugged the shimmering lady. Lilian nodded lightly and hugged her healer back. After several seconds the two parted and Lilian softly waved goodbye to the elderly woman. As she walked toward the air vessel she noticed that everyone was gone now, the large crew that was working on getting the ship ready for flight had dispersed and it was only her and Meredith left on the ground floor. The socialite walked up the steps into the airship and managed to calm her breathing. She gave one last wave before walking into the ship and hearing the door close behind her.
Her eyes widened as, interestingly enough, the sound of animals could be heard from another part of the ship.