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The Pen is Mightier than the Sword
Peredhil

A weary traveler returns

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"What is this stuff you're drinking?" Tanny looked at Mynx's glass, sniffing at it carefully and stoppign a reaction sneeze just in time. "Whatever it is - too volatile!" She grimaced, looking at her friend fondly. Then, getting a glimpse of a new face, Tanny tilted her head and waved the peeking figure in with a smile.

 

"Hello! Come in - room for all here!" She showed the table, that continued to grow in extension while Guido and Nuncio bickered amiably about where and how to put the several individual tables together.

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Peredhil was thrilled to see so many in the Pen.

 

"Tzimfemme! I'm so glad you could show up. I've looked for Ozy, and sent messages but there's been no reply yet." He blinked around, counting, "Do Patrick, Jechum and Zool count as animal women? From the way you talk, it sounds like you're thinking I'm setting up a harem. My only interest in THAT direction, as ever, is my wife - but this one is living.

 

"I do hope you'll feel welcome here, or if not, at least speak plainly as to why you'd protest a dead Pen being brought back into a form of life."

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Tanny noticed Peredhil approaching Tzimfemme but, not truly interested in that conversation, let her eyes wander around while still playing with the glass in her hands. Then she saw the slightly glowing announcement board. Hmm... something new?

 

She frowned, trying to make out the few announcements on it. The board had been spelled at some point so that it glowed softly in slightly different colors whenever there was something new or ... some repeated event? What was it, actually? I've updated the Open Activities notice, so that might be it... but changing colors... OH!

 

Blinking a few times, Tanny almost smacked her hand on her forehead - thankfully, she remembered she was holding a glass of wine. Getting up, she tugged at Mynx's tail, urgently.

 

"Kitty, come - there's a birthday today!" Pointing at the announcement board, she dragged the feline with her, apparently deaf to her friend's squealed, indignant protest. "I need your help!"

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The drink came extra glossy on top. Tzimfemme tapped the bar and watched the light bounce off the ripples in the drink. Yes. That was a layer of practical joke. And Guido had ears. And sympathy for the room.

 

What I want, I get. But with a bitter gloss to it. This drink is my life in liquid form.

 

Where had that easy double tongue been back when she wanted it? But why now and here, when a word would--

 

She stopped thinking and listened to Peredhil.

 

"It was almost all men last time the Pen stirred, flighty ones. It is just interesting. People return to the Pen in groups and it has nothing to do with the Reality." She unfocused her eyes and gave Peredhil another once-over. "Almost nothing. I see. Congratulations.

 

"But by the gods, they are proud and happy one and all! And should be. I am not blind to the difference. And what's more--"

Tzimfemme grabbed her glass and gave it a sharp shake. The light lifted off of the one large ripple and floated up into the air. The point of whiteness hung there and lit the people with warmth.

 

"--I am free. I am in the light. And that might mean free to stop haunting and darkening the Pen every time it stirs. And if what I said was the best I could say, and it was at the time. . ."

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"Absolutely free, to do whatever you choose, this time," Peredhil agreed warmly, "Free to be, to write, to lurk, or to do whatever interests pull you elsewhere." He looked around, and tried to focus on physical bodies instead of auras and hearts. "Huh, when surrounded by magicians and shapechangers, there is a superficial likeness indeed. I once had a friend, looked very much like a octopus hardened for land-use, tell me that he couldn't tell the difference between an Elf and a Gnome. I see things differently, and there are as many perceptions as there are persons. When it comes to opinions, I personally believe that they may be inaccurate, but if sincerely held, they aren't "wrong" as long as they are honestly communicated - opinions come from the meeting of emotion and intellect."

 

He turned and looked carefully at Guido. "Well, how surprising. You DO have ears. It's interesting to look at bodies - that's rather cute."

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Zool listens to Tzimfemme, and smiles. "Free. At last, " the painting thinks wistfully, his face frozen in it's portraitured pose, "She has verbalized the difference between us. That alone makes the pain of our near-meeting worthwhile - to see. Someone. Truly. Free. It's well worth it just to see what that looks like."

Edited by The Portrait of Zool

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An avatar of death, a Frenchman, and a cat-man with no pants walk into the Cabaret.

 

Wait, you've heard this one?

 

Bugger.

 

 

The Cat-man spoke first, mouth agape, yellow eyes wide under a beige stetson. "Cor. Fancy, it is."

 

"Stranger indeed than my home, gentlemen. And this is saying something," replied the Frenchman, drinking it all and everyrone in, but much more critically.

 

SQUEAK, rejoined the tiny, toothy, tailed avatar. The three stood resolutely, but seemed for the moment unininterested in moving forward as yet. Well, the tiny avatar did, but- even skeletal as his body is - made a small show of waiting impatiently for his companions to get on with it.

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