When solid ground grows soft with emerald moss and rivulets of black mud, and coffee-colored water pours slowly around the trunks of densely carpeted trees, this marks the beginning of Laod Mor: the swamp of Blossom Forest. Time itself seems to slow to a soporific crawl . . . the humid jungle air grows stagnant, thick with the scent of rich flooded earth and an abundance of green things that can be found nowhere else—except perhaps Caidir Olc. In some areas of the swamp, water rises so high the only way to cross it is to crawl across fallen logs or massive roots arching from their liquid beds; in other places a wolf might wade easily through the mire—or find a fortunate stretch of mostly dry earth. Pieces of the great river, Glaesfaet Sceawere, also slice through from time to time: small falls that feed into surprisingly clear pools, only to terminate into tar-like pits. Of course, Laod Mor’s beauty shines brightest at night. Here, fireflies gather at all times of the year . . . suffusing the shadowy place with millions of twinkling lights.

Those looking to hunt here of course find a myriad of water prey, including caiman, turtles, fish, crayfish, otters, and toads.


Time heals all most wounds...I heal the rest

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The fae offered her condolences quietly, and Hellene did not miss her body trembling ever so faintly. ‘I'm sorry for your loss miss... I too have lost loved ones, and I fear it is never easy.’ Hellene nodded her head and whimpered a single last time. There was more than one way to lose a loved one, not only through death. Even after the deaths of her friends in the fight with the stray pack, there had been another death – Universe’s – which she still knew nothing about. She had not wanted to push Brendon too hard, for the teenager was in even more pain that Hellene herself was. Still, Hellene was curious, and would get to the bottom of it before long. But even with the loss of friends and family, there was still the need to help others. For whatever reason – perhaps the pain had beaten down her cold extremity, temporarily disabled her firewalls – Hellene was been warm. She was being kind to a stranger, hell she was even welcoming her home. But this fae, reminded Hellene of herself when she was younger. Athene had always protected Hellene, who would protect this faeling… and so the timberess had insisted that Cliché follow her.

If you insist, then it would hardly be polite of me to decline. I'll journey back to your home with you, Miss Hellene, but I'll be gone at the first sign of hostility. I have no room in my life for any more pain. Should your family accept me I will do my best to help you heal their ailments, to repay the kindness you have extended to me in my time of need.’ Hellene tilted her head and smiled, near laughing. “Oh honey, I’m usually the one who is hostile. Kalgalath… well he describes our pack as a family. A home to those who need sanctuary – he has just made jobs for those in the pack that want them so that we can rely on each other to teach us what we are interested in, and then specialize.” Hellene smiled and turned, her nares pointing back toward the packgrounds.

The trip was a long one, quite a few hours of travel as the pack was almost on the other side of Blossom Forest, but the trip was an easy one. Staircase Falls fed the River that eventually fed the Lake that served as one edge to the pack. They traveled steadily down the river, and Hellene stopped once or twice in order to lower her head and drink from its cool, clean waters, sating her thirst. Finally, they reached the edge of the pack, made up of an intermingling sense of Sebring and Kalgalath. Tilting her head back, she inhaled deeply and let loose a howl before turning back to Cliché. “You only need to cross over, Cliché, and you will have a home… a home and a family.

||Hellene|| ||I hold my own heart|| ||Aurora Borealis–Delta || ||Adult|| || Mother to Khaleesi, Destan ||

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