Post Word Count: 1,166
Job Word Count: 1,166/14,000
Items Used IC/OOC: Item 1, Item 2
Active Spells: None
Aeluri paced wall to wall and back again. The tiny room in the ship’s cabin felt like it was growing smaller with each tick of the clock on the wall. Her shoes and the timepiece were the only sounds within the space, save for the faint crashing of waves against the sides of the ship.
Fingers twitched in agitation as Aeluri moved around. She hated the ocean. She hated ships. Yet, here she was, traversing the Cloud Sea atop one. Why on Earthland had she taken this godforsaken job? Her self-confidence had led her astray again. “‘I can brave the sea again,’” Aeluri muttered, mocking her own thoughts from the other day. “‘The last time wasn’t so bad!’ Tch! What an idiot!” Footsteps became stomps for a moment. She was furious with herself for ending up on the ocean again. The one place she hated most on the planet was around her. As soon as she and her mentee, Louie, had boarded the ship, Aeluri had taken to her room in the ship’s cabin. The less she had to see the ocean, the less distressed she would be on the trip. The past few days on the water had been torture. She hardly slept.
The ship’s crew had said that today was the day they would arrive at their destination. Aeluri had asked enough times to annoy them. The minutes ticked and ticked. Each one sounded louder and louder in her ears. At last, the raven-haired woman couldn’t handle it. She grabbed a book from a nearby shelf and hurled it at the clock. Glass shattered as it collided with the timepiece. The annoying ticking subsided. Aeluri looked at the debris with a scowl. The ship lurched and so did her stomach.
“Five minutes until takeoff!” came a cry from a shipmate on the deck. Aeluri’s ears perked up. Takeoff? What could that mean? Though she had been persistent about asking when they would arrive, the dark mage hadn’t asked about how they would reach their destination. She knew the castle at the end of their journey was airborne but figured that there was some way to get up from the ocean. Maybe a ladder? An aircraft? Who knew.
Quickly Aeluri donned her waist-length cloak and pulled the hood over her feline ears. She had the ability to take on any feline features at any time, so she had been passing the time listening to the crew’s conversations with heightened hearing and carving pictures into the wooden walls of the cabin with sharp claws. Hopefully when they found her handiwork they wouldn’t be too mad. Black fabric fit comfortably over her ears, which she flattened to her head. The less the ship’s crew knew about her, the better. That included appearance.
Aeluri rushed from her room and climbed the stairs to the deck to see what was going on. She had to dodge a few shipmates rushing about. When she reached the surface, the sight of the water around the ship made her stomach churn. Choppy waves were obscured not far out from the vessel by low-hanging clouds. Apparently the Cloud Sea lived up to its name.
Mismatching eyes looked around for Louie. Aeluri hadn’t seen him much since she had holed herself up beneath the decks. She wondered how he had been spending the trip. Probably complaining to himself about the fishy smell in the air or how gruff the crew looked. Aeluri snorted at the thought. A quick glance around didn’t reveal her mentee, but surely he had heard the call and would show up soon.
The hooded woman approached the captain, who was directing his employees left and right. They seemed to be prepping the ship for something. When he caught sight of her, he gave Aeluri a nod. She nodded in response. When she had sought out someone to take her and Louie to their mystical destination, the person who had sent out the job posting had given them a list of sailors who might be willing to take them. Going down the list, many of them had denied the existence of the castle or curtly said that they would not agree. No amount of bribing could sway them. The last sailor on the list had sat down with Aeluri and Louie to discuss it in private. The three had taken up a quiet corner of a cafe where the sailor knew the owner. There, he had revealed that he knew the location of the castle and that he had little favor for the Magic Council. He was willing to take the two there to fulfill their mission and would simply look the other way. Should anyone ask him, he would feign ignorance.
Aeluri had a shred of respect for the ship’s captain. She wasn’t a huge fan of the Magic Council herself, and was glad that someone had been able to take her and Louie to their destination. He would be paid handsomely for his time. The hooded mage approached him. The captain paused his direction for a moment and turned his attention to Aeluri as the crew buzzed around them like working bees.
“Are we close?” she asked simply. “Aye,” he responded in a raspy voice. “Good,” Aeluri nodded and turned to walk back across the deck. As seasick as she felt, the sinister woman did well at hiding it. She only made it a few steps before she remembered the question she had intended to ask. “Oh,” she exclaimed, turning her shoulder to the captain once more. Crimson and gold eyes peered curiously. “What was that I heard about taking off?”
“HOLD ON, EVERYONE!” the captain cried just then. “COMMENCING TAKEOFF!” The ship lurched beneath their feet. Several crew members stumbled and grabbed onto whatever they could. The ocean churned and roared beneath them. Aeluri leapt to the nearest railing and clutched it as tightly as she could. Instinctively her claws detracted and dug into the wood for extra grip. The vessel tossed a bit before Aeluri could feel an odd sensation. Were they… ascending?
She rushed to the outermost edge of the deck. The boat was exerting a powerful magic from within that was lifting it from the ocean! Oars with winged extensions churned at breakneck speed. A massive sail had been extended. It was catching the wind and curved in a beautiful arc of cloth against the clouds. Only the last third of the ship was in the ocean. Water dripped, streamed, roared down the sides of the boat, returning to its source. The sound was tremendous.
Aeluri was fascinated. A ship that could go airborne! She had never seen anything like it before. At last the vessel was completely airborne, traveling at a much faster speed than it had been in the water. The hooded woman nearly let out a whoop. They were finally away from the ocean! She could already feel her stomach settling. Aeluri turned to the deck to look for Louie once more.
Last edited by aeluri on 29th March 2020, 12:13 pm; edited 5 times in total