[Screenshots] LOTRO – Jester Pony

And Hobbit got her pony today! She also got the giant flower hand-held which I hadn’t got before. Love it!

Jangles

Jangles

[Story] A Tangle of Brambles 84: Binding

Hiding a dragon — even a small one — in the room of an inn is not possible for long. Uldred finally had to accept that truth. While he yearned to further his contacts in Stormwind’s darkened underbelly, the dragon was important to him too. Very important. He’d never seen — or even read — of such an animal growing to maturity. They were bred as experiments, never meant to amount to much. Yet the little whelp had thrived in his care, growing larger almost by the day. Now the size of a pony, Uldred had to find more suitable lodging for the both of them, where people wouldn’t ask questions.

But he couldn’t just leave Naxitarius alone for long periods of time. He’d finally chosen a name for the dragon, and names were power, as Uldred knew well. He’d have to call upon one of his demons for aid, one who could travel quickly and not attract too much attention in human lands. Succubi were the best at this, of course, looking the most like humans and capable of illusions to hide their tell-tale wings and horns. But Vilwena was trouble, far more trouble than Uldred was prepared to deal with again. Aside from mistreating the young dragon, she’d drawn too much attention to herself with her meddling. And maybe there was a streak of jealousy too, though he’d not admit it.

He’d have to bind another. Uldred didn’t see any choice in the matter. It was a time-consuming process, though made slightly easier by the fact that he’d already bound one before. And there were a great many texts dealing with the attraction and binding of succubi — it seems that they were a favorite of lonely summoners. While the dragon’s sickly-yellow eyes watched curiously, Uldred drew a summoning circle upon the floor of his room. He’d have to take a good scrubbing brush to the floorboards before he left. But simply drawing the circle wasn’t enough, not for binding. Some demons must be bound by brute force, such as the felguard. But others — like succubi — were usually amenable to a mutually beneficial arrangement. The chance to feed off humans, near a large city like Stormwind, would be irresistible to nearly any succubus.

It didn’t take long for an unbound demon to wander close to his circle, stepping through the Nether into Uldred’s room in the inn. Her dark eyes blinked at the warlock, sitting beside the curled-up dragon on the floor nearby. He spoke before she could.

“Hello, succubus,” said Uldred, scratching the soft scales between the dragon’s eye ridges. “I have an opportunity for you, if you’d care to listen.”

She did. She offered up her name — and her wrists — readily in exchange for the chance to roam freely among the humans. Within reason, of course, Uldred reminded her. But first, he had a job for her to do: find them somewhere quiet to live.

[Screenshots] LOTRO – Simbelmyne Steed

Anders got his pretty teal horse today. I swear, it’s always night-time when I go to take pony pictures.

Much as I like this one, I don’t think I’ll get any others, because 40 leaves take a long time to collect!

Edit: Daytime picture!

[Story] Vassanta’s Journal

Hi journal,

I guess I haven’t written for a while. Not too much has happened, except just now which is why I’m writing. Things are good at the temple. Tumbles is pretty much the size of a regular bear now, which is really funny when he tries to sit on Jaeyn’s lap. I don’t think he knows he’s that big. Even though it was my idea, I’m going to be sad to leave the temple behind. I wonder if maybe Tumbles could stay behind and keep the ogres out for us. I should suggest it to Jaeyn.

Ellorian came and made a portal for us to Draenor. He only knew how to make one to Shattrath, not the islands, so we had to ride the rocket over there. Not that I ever mind that! The islands were still there, just as we’d left them. I was relieved that nobody had come and tried to live there while we were gone.

When we flew over the ruins, Jaeyn said he wanted to go explore in them. I kind of had a bad feeling about it, I mean, it’s full of ghosts and I told him that. But hearing that only made him more excited to go see it. They’re draenei ghosts, people who died and can’t rest now because some cult people woke them up. They could be my father and mother, they’re someone’s father and mother for sure. I explained how the ruins used to be a really big temple and he asked if I ever saw it when it was like that. I said it hadn’t, because my family never had anyone to bring here to get put in the crypts.

It didn’t take long before we saw a ghost. It was a young girl, probably not too much younger than myself. I wonder how she died, and I wondered if her family was here too. After that, Jaeyn didn’t really want to see any more ghosts. I’m glad for that, because being in there made me want to cry. Outside we saw a few of the Auchenai, the creepy draenei who live there. I had to explain how they’re not good draenei and they might try to hurt us if they saw us. The one we saw was big and he had no tendrils at all — gross. He was fighting with a long wooden staff and his bare hands. Jaeyn thought that was cool and we should try practicing like that. I don’t really see the point, I mean, a wooden staff is just like a fake sword. He’s graduated onto using real swords. But I don’t see the harm in it, so I said yes.

The Commander was still on the islands too, the one with all the other striders. I think he was the biggest one. He really is a Commander!

Bye journal,
~Vass

[Screenshots] LOTRO – Steed of the Jester (again)

Today’s last box held a Jester steed for Rathanil, my Minstrel. He’s the one I really wanted it for, doesn’t he look great?

I also opened two boxes on Morthorn yesterday and he got one too! I wish the quest wasn’t quite so time-consuming, but I’m happy that the horse drop rate seems to be pretty high. I’ll probably try to get a pony one for my Hobbit too.

Gotta go do Andarthir’s dailies so he can get the new festival horse, he’s over halfway there. Shrew-stomping is the best!

[Story] Isandri’s Diary

Dear Diary,

Thero is such a good cook! I can’t believe some woman hasn’t snapped him up yet. I don’t really believe that his limp would keep them away, so maybe he hasn’t really been trying to be noticed. Whatever the reason, I’m happy to be able to experience it. The other night he made the most amazing steak, he said it was from an animal that lives up here called a shoveltusk. The name sounds awful, but believe me, it was good. In fact it might be the best steak I’ve tasted. Of course, it didn’t hurt that he cooked it with his shirt off either.

I haven’t started looking for my dress, though I’ve talked about it with Lali and Kestrae a little bit. Maybe we could go shopping together? Just to look, I mean. I don’t even know what to begin looking for in a wedding dress. Kestrae seems a little undecided about it too, she said something about eloping. She had better not! I want to see my brother get married, and I want to see her dress too. She’s going to be my sister, she deserves something nice. Even if it’s just a little ceremony like Lali and Raleth’s.

That reminds me, at the park last night we were talking, and we saw Sanimir there. That’s the mage that makes my evening portals for me. Well, as it turns out Kestrae knew him too, and we invited him to sit with us. He’s really quite pleasant, but he was worried that he couldn’t find any girls to like him. He was worried that his hair didn’t match his robes, isn’t that funny? We assured him that his hair was fine (it was) and that his robes were nice (they were). He may just be coming on too strongly, or perhaps he lacks confidence. He kept asking how he could tell if a particular girl liked him, and what he should say to her. I told him to just be himself, but he said that doesn’t work. It will in time, I tried to tell him, but then he said I didn’t have to look for Thero at all so somehow my opinion was invalid. I don’t know. There are plenty of people here in Dalaran though, so I’m sure he’ll find a nice girl soon.

We talked about Teniron too. They both think I should just get along with him, as if he’ll suddenly stop being horrible. I said I didn’t want to invite him to our wedding but I haven’t told Thero that yet. I’m afraid he’ll say that I have to. Maybe if we don’t have any alcohol. Kestrae said that if Sath has to get along with Thero, I have to get along with Teniron. Except Sath and Thero don’t get along, still. I talked to him about it and he said he’s not even going to try anymore. Honestly, those two are so stubborn. I could try talking to  Teniron, I guess, but I really think it would just make matters worse. I don’t know.

[Story] A Tangle of Brambles 83: Pup

Pup turned the knife over in his hands, feeling the cold weight of it. The blade was short, only about four inches long, and it looked as if it had once been longer, salvaged from a longer blade into a dagger. Leather wrapped the handle, allowing a comfortable grip when his fingers wrapped around it. He closed his eyes and drew the letters in his mind.

N-I-F-E.

Pup frowned slightly. No, that wasn’t right. He was missing something, but he couldn’t remember what it was. He couldn’t ask Josie. The elf made him promise not to tell her. He said Josie would take it away if she knew. You need to be able to protect yourself, the elf said. Keep it in your boots or somewhere you can reach easy. If someone tries to hurt you, use it. Even if the guards see you. Run if you have to.

They’d spent more time together lately. Pup liked that. While he was doing well with his reading, he liked going with the elf too. They practiced climbing roofs, he showed Pup his clockwork animals, and he could ask the elf things that Josie didn’t understand. Sneaking things. And sometimes, man things.

Pup pulled on his boots, the leather well-worn and supple. He tucked the blade carefully inside the flap that the elf had showed him how to make. The feeling of the hilt nestled against his calf felt good, comforting. No one would bother him. He picked up his practice book too, tucking it under his arm. Mostly it was in case Josie saw him, but he might find time to practice his words, too. Each week she gave him some new ones to learn, and he spent a great deal of time staring at the letters, trying to distinguish the code of their meaning. Some words were easy, and he learned those quickly enough, but they were getting more complicated.

P-U-P, that was an easy word. That was his name now. He didn’t like his other name, it sounded like a name that would make other people hit him. He wasn’t sure how to spell that one either, but if he thought about it hard, he could probably have found the right sounds to put together. He didn’t want to think about it, though. He didn’t want to think about lying in the bone-chilling mud while it rained, his leg burning with the fever of his bite. He didn’t know how long he lay there, but someone picked him up and washed him off. It was inside a church, and other hurt people lay around on the floor with him. There weren’t any other kids. Pup didn’t think about when he saw them change, and how the lady in the white dress looked at him with worry in her eyes. But though they watched him closely, Pup hadn’t changed. Not yet. He heard them talking about it. Maybe he wasn’t bitten enough. Maybe it would happen when he was older. Maybe it wasn’t the right kind of bite.

His mother and father weren’t at the church. When they had to leave Gilneas, Pup realized that they weren’t coming. They were dead, or they had changed too. He found he did not feel much about it either way. Even before, he’d spent a lot of time in the dark streets, looking for food or dropped coins. He’d just have to find his own place to sleep at night now. The other adults gave him concerned looks, but none of them offered. When he stepped off the boat onto the Stormwind docks, he was alone. Until now, that is.

J-O-S-I-E. She was warm and smelled nice. But he knew she didn’t really want him to stay. She wanted to go without telling him where, and she wanted to do woman things. Sometimes she went out and came back smelling of the woods. He sometimes wished he could go with her, but he never had the courage to ask.

E-L-F. Pup couldn’t spell Harrier, but he could spell elf. That’s what the Lady called him. He was big and fast, and he knew everything. Pup looked up at him in awe. But the elf didn’t really want him to stay, either. He’d gone away for a while and just forgotten about Pup, just like the grown-ups in Gilneas had done. But maybe he felt bad. Maybe he was trying to make up for it now. Pup enjoyed their time together of late, and the elf had even given him the knife. He’d shown him how to climb and he’d promised to show him more. Pup had a feeling that someone had forgotten about the elf, too.

Down at the lakeside, Pup settled beneath the spreading branches of a tree. The morning was still cool, but the day promised to be a hot one. The boy unspooled a length of string, tying the end to one of the tree branches. On the other end he tied a hook, skewering a worm he’d scratched up from the ground nearby. He tossed the baited hook into the lake, and he opened up his practice book to study.