A Language Tutor

Xenofos — A Language Tutor

????, Storm Season, Season/Movement Week


Context

Storm Season/Movement Week/Clay Day/At dawn. [[[s02:session-29|Session 29]]]

Events

A bit before dawn Xenofos scribbles a note of explanation.
Taking a last look of the chamber he nods and puts on his helmet.

After leaving the temple he looks briefly uphill and starts walking towards the House of Earth.

Before dawn, Berra is already seeing her third Sword Lord of the morning. This one is the least scary, and yet the most terrifying. In her leather armour, twirling a spear shaft, she sets off. She goes at a fast clip, and is past the Temple of Knowledge by the time Xenofos leaves the Temple he is at. By the time he emerges onto the flat green of the lower city, she is seated by the side of the road, her spear shaft walking stick beside her. The little Humakti is tearing into breakfast.

Xenofos eyes lit up when he sees the familial sight on roadside.

Bread and cheese and a part of a dried onion seed-head. Berra is doing what infantry do, when they wait – filling time and her stomach. She glances up as footsteps come closer, and stands.

Xenofos smiles and nods.

“Hey. I have a thing to say.” She offers him half of her loaf, torn off with the cheese still in it.

“Good morning to you also, little cousin.” he accepts the bread ” I hear you.”

“You have to take much more care not to make it sound like Varanis might want to be Prince. It gets seen. Heard.” Berra bites at her food, delicate now that there is someone else present.

She talks in Heortling, her accent northern.

“Yea, I botched that royally.” He acknowledges.

“Time to speak this tongue?” she suggests. “To make sure you can.”

“Or show that I cannot. Maybe.” scribe looks at Berra “You are probably right. If we stay here longer than just few weeks this time.”

She looks back up at him, bold but not accusing. “Just for a few weeks, too. No puns about crowns. No words that go too close to it. She needs to not look like a threat.”

He strokes his beard “I don’t think I am capable of puns in Heortling, intentionally. So speaking Heortling publicly is probably to be avoided if we want to stay on safe side. “

“You need to talk it more. Let them all see – hear. That you have to work at it. Like you say.” She shrugs. “But that was all I had to say.”

“Were you instructed to say this, or is this your own advice, Berra?”

“Lord Eril said it was vital to pass on. I thought about what to say and how. And about how to say it in short words because he was a … well, he was himself to me about that, but watching him have to go back over ‘proficient’ was better than getting breakfast early.” She is smiling widely now, mostly at her food, but also quite obviously at the memory. Yelm starts to light the sky properly, picking out the western rocks.


“I see.” Xenofos nods thoughtfully. “In Heortling short words might- suffice erm be more hmmm appropriate erm safer.1 He turns to Heortling mixed with Esrolian

“Hard, isn’t it? It turns out that ‘better’ is a long word if you think about it right. But some words sound right in Esrolian and different in Heortling.” She gives no examples.

“Aye. ” He looks at Berra, seems to think of something, shakes his head, amused, and takes a bit of the bread instead of saying anything.

“And Valseena is going to want to learn Heortling too, so I’ll probably be speaking it with her.” She takes small bites, but from her own loaf, not by tearing them off like a civilised woman.2 Xenofos fails scan with 67 what adorably cute nose

Her scowl of concentration as she bites is so her… And so is her habit of looking around and about them as they walk, and ahead and, “I think Varanis is climbing up the Earth Temple.” She goes from hungry infanteer to reactive infanteer in a moment, scowling in a different way to get a clearer view.3 Berra specials scan, Xenofos passes love Berra…

Xenofos looks to the same direction when snapped into reality by Berra’s words.

He peers towards the Earth temple and there is low mumbling in what might be Firespeech as he touches his forehead with thumb and two fingers.4 casting Farsee

There is a little figure clambering with her usual spidery elegance up the building, right to the roof. Berra starts to hurry.

Xenofos looks startled, curses in Esrolian and follows.

“Nope,” Berra says. “Try that in Heortling. I won’t blush.”

Rushing forward he is struck silent, starts to say something but is unable to finish because he starts laughing.5 Earlier he managed not to comment on recommended natural way of learning language by finding a willing lover to teach, but irony is overwhelming him now so hilarity bubbles over

As Varanis nearly falls, Berra slows, raising a hand to be ready to cast a spell, but the Vingan holds onto the roof and then climbs back up again, and Berra goes rather more slowly, warily watching. “She… has no idea what a sky-line is, does she?”

“I have no idea what skyelain is?”

“When you put your shape above a solid thing like a roof or a hill, you’re easy to pick out. It’s why you wriggle up to them.” Or at least, she does. Berra taps her cuirass – she is in the leathers today, with two swords. “This is good for that sort of thing.”

“Ah – like do not ride direktly over a hill when scouting? She saluting Yelm. Wants to see and be seen.”6 GM:((A skyline is for looking SPLENDID on!))
Xenofos:((Shutup Tiwr, you are not here.))
GM:((That was the LSK, but same difference))

“Yeaaaaahhhh….” Berra sighs. “And I know, but she’s being very seen.” Then she shrugs, keeping a wary eye on Varanis as nothing untowards happens. “I’d race you there, but we don’t want to alarm people.”

Xenofos nods and walks with steady hurried pace forwards.

Shortly, they arrive at the Earth Temple. “Ask for her?” Berra suggests. “Run the words past me first if you want.”

“Wir are hear to see Thegn Varanis?”

“We are here,” Berra says. “Although you’ll talk like a peasant if you talk like me.”

Far above their heads, Varanis tells the recumbent Ernalda. “Well…. thank you for your company and your assistance. I should probably climb down now.” She holds her hand out in front of her. It no longer trembles so obviously. Rising, she carefully makes her way to the roof’s edge and sits with her feet dangling over the side. She rubs her palms on her legs as she considers the distance. There’s a deep breath, then she swings herself over and around and begins her descent.7 28/73. Nothing to worry about

Xenofos corrects his wording after the suggestion, with some mirth in his eyes.8 Xenofos passes scan ? 37/38, V:X passes scan? Who are you and what have you done with my cousin?
Berra smiles too, on seeing his amusement. Then, as Varanis comes down the wall in defiance of protocol, she steps back, letting him deal with the situation.

“Gut Morning, my Lady.”

“Good,” Berra murmurs.