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Old 04-05-2020, 09:37 AM   #40
Hauntress of the Havens
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: IN it, but not OF it
Posts: 2,724
Lhunardawen has been trapped in the Barrow!
“It’s like the Red Arrow,” whispered Lhuna, staring at her computer screen, as one who receives a summons long expected and yet dreadful when it comes. She trembled. It had indeed come to that, as she had predicted. Had it been entirely up to her, she would have heeded the call with all the strength and speed she could muster, but there were other factors to consider. A comrade in arms counselled her to wait until the stores of personal protective equipment were adequate, and the siege was better under control. She, in turn, decided to start sharpening her best weapon. Long had her mind — and stethoscope — been idle.

In the midst, however, of studying the local clinical practice guidelines for COVID-19 management, her concentration began to waver. Before long she found herself wandering along long-forgotten halls; dark they were, but with a tinge of mint green light that seemed to emanate from no particular source. As she walked, a musty scent filled her nostrils, making her sneeze. She was careful to cover her mouth with the crook of her elbow, as health authorities advised. The sound echoed faintly in the empty hallway.

At the end of a hallway there was an elaborate door from which came a steady hum of voices, some oddly familiar, as though she had encountered them often in years past but had since been absent, some entirely unknown, all filled with excitement. Lhuna found herself drawn to the sound. She started pacing towards a glitter near the slightly ajar door, which revealed itself to be a frying pan reflecting sunlight from the room inside. “What’s a pan doing here?” She picked it up, wiped it with a piece of tissue soaked with 75% isopropyl alcohol, a bottle of which she always brought everywhere she went. She also poured a generous helping of alcohol on her palms and rubbed them briskly together, as she had done countless times. She then peered cautiously through the door.


Lhuna had not said the word in years, yet was surprised at the ease with which it escaped through her lips. “I must have fallen asleep reading that CPG. But if this is a dream, I hope I don’t wake up yet.” She stepped inside soundlessly, and walked along the wall to keep herself inconspicuous. She had not seen or heard from any of them in ages (her own fault, she had disappeared even from Facebook) and she was not certain they would remember her. She looked at the familiar faces and, as was her wont, gave herself a few seconds before each one brought to mind a name, and a particular memory. She saw a walking pile of pots and pans (“SpM! I must remember to give this pan back to him”) speaking to a long-haired woman with her back towards her (“Esty! I’d recognise Princess Fiona’s hair from anywhere. I wonder if she remembers swooning over Aragorn”). She realised she was not up for socialising just yet.

She saw Elempi sitting in a corner and knew he would not mind quiet company. Lhuna made her way to his corner and sat gently on the seat beside him, before turning to face him and answering his wide-eyed look with a huge smile.
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