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About Gabrielle

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  1. Dear Diary, I gave my first Tarot reading tonight. I was looking for a place to sit and study my cards when I met a paladin. He told me to wait in the inn, where we were, because the Alliance was attacking the city! Naturally I did as he instructed, but while he was gone I had an epiphany. I was about to leave when he returned. I must confess, dear diary, I was in a horrible rush, and our interaction could have been more substantial. But I must attend to that epiphany. Goodnight, Gabrielle
  2. For the Count I drew the Five of Cups. He has lost much, but he does not let the sorrow consume him. He perseveres. *giggles and inspects her own hand* He has a musician's fingers.
  3. An elegant journal, with a small lock linking the covers together. It is hardback white, trimmed in blue, pink, and gold vine-like designs. The lock is never fastened. The handwriting inside is a neat and feminine cursive. Dear Diary, Today I was in Silvermoon City to place some items I had made up for auction. I found a stack of twenty linen pieces of sale for three silver so I snatched that up. They had it delivered to the mailbox. When I went over there, can you imagine what happened? A blood elf girl who was quite nearly naked began dancing with me! She had a little imp with her. "Oh, my!" I said. "You are nearly naked!" "I know," she said. "Aren't I sexy?" I offered to give her a dress and she accepted. I happened to have a simple dress in my bag, which I had planned for selling since they sell so well. I gave it to her and she put it on. She looked lovely in it. She thanked me and we wished each other luck. She offered to group with me to do things, but I was suspicious of what she wished to do and I needed to return to Mama and Papa so I did. I am happy to have made someone's day less cold. I do hope she keeps it on. Goodnight, Lady Gabrielle D'Esreth
  4. MARTHIN WHITSTONE MEETS HIS MATCH Marthin Whitstone inherited his parents' wealth, such as was left, when Dalaran fell to the Scourge. He used much of it to help re-fortify the Violet City, and wisely saved much of the rest. The horror of the undead army and the death of his parents did not stop his old habits though: He was a heart-thief, wooing fair maidens and bedding them, then discarding them. How he kept this up for so long without the girls banding together against him I do not know. Perhaps it was his innocent brown eyes, his roguish smile. Perhaps they did not mind so much to be ravished by this tall, firm-bodied wizard. His "victims" did nothing. His undoing, when it came, came in the form of a beautiful stranger named Beatrix Bellamoor. No one he asked knew where she had come from. A Lordaeron refugee, some said. She has always been here, only reclusive, said others. The mystery of her served to draw him nearer. Oh? What did she look like? Let me think... Imagine fiery orange hair, full and thick, reaching a tiny waist that tapered out into child-bearing hips. A bustline that was firm and high, but not overly large. Sensuous lips and a small, round nose; eyes a deep luxurious green. Her attire was always rich and elegant, provacatively tasteful. A woman of wealth and magical power. How he longed to possess her! He courted her for months, pursued her to the exclusion of all others he had previously been persuing. Yet she returned all of his gifts unopened, declined all his dinner invitations. She did not insult him, not ever, and was always gracious in her refusal of his advances. He kept at it for a year, and his friends said he was nearly mad with wanting her. Finally she came to him one night. The details were recorded by a scrying-crystal she had made, around which many young ladies of Dalaran were gathered. I was among them: He had never wronged me, for I am saving my virtue for the prince of my own story; but around me were friends desparate to see Beatrix's vengeance on their behalf. She came to him at night, appearing to him as he paced his garden anxiously, devising another scheme to win her heart no doubt; wearing a cloak of bright silver-white which concealed her form and much of her face. She greeted him, and he turned to face her. He tried a bit of poetry on her, by way of greeting. She stopped his recitations with a finger to his lips. "Hush," she said. "I have come to you to offer you a proposition." She stepped closer to him, their bodies inches apart, and we all saw his eyes flicker down, saw them widen as a bare knee poked through the folds of silver-white cloth. A leg wearing nothing but a high-heeled red boot. Beatrix continued: "Your affections are appreciated, Marthin Whitstone." "Are they reciprocated, my lady?" he asked, forcing his eyes back to her cowled face. "They could be," she said, "if you promise me something." "Name it, and it is yours!" "Promise me, Marthin, that you will wear my ring." With a small flourish, she held up a golden ring, pinched between thumb and forefinger. "Is that a wedding ring?" he asked, his voice uncertain. "Yes," she said. "I will be yours, Marthin, if you will be mine. Eternally, and to the exclusion of all others. Those are my conditions. In return..." She lifted the hood of her cloak and let it fall, shaking out her fiery hair. As she raised her arms, the cloth of the silver-white cloak fell back, showing she was wearing nothing but a red and black corset, with small panties, and those boots. "I will be yours, eternally, and to the exclusion of all others." Ah, what a brief dilemma he faced! To have his perfect woman, and lose the game of conquest? Or to decline her offer and continue loving and leaving the lesser ladies of Dalaran? A brief dilemma, for he was a somewhat clever man, and knew that he could not be satisfied until Beatrix was his; furthermore, infidelity was not an uncommon occurance in the Violet City. He would promise, and then renege; what could she do to stop the heart-thief? "I accept your terms, my lady," he said, his wild eyes giving away the lie of his somber voice. Beatrix slipped the ring on his finger while we all held our breaths in anticipation. Marthin staggered back, and cried out as the ring glowed on his finger, then gave a burst of light that hurt even our eyes. When the light cleared, and all eyes were adjusted, this was the scene we saw: Marthin, trying to take off the ring which now seemed fused to his finger. Beatrix, vanished; in her place, the dowdy librarian Genny, an old maid of thirty years. The look of horror on his face as he realized he'd been tricked! The cackles and laughter of the girls Genny had left the scrying crystal with! And what a look of despair he wore the next day, to his wedding. Yes, he went through with his promise; the ring was enchanted, and he had no choice. Genny the librarian forced a life of domestic fidelity on him. It was a cruel trick, a most wicked thing to do. But when I left, she had a babe at her breast, and her tummy swelled with the promise of another. No one has heard him complain about it, and one suspects he may even be happy. Who can say for sure?
  5. Gabrielle is stitching black pupils into the eye of the dragon. A fire has been lit in the hearth, and a maid has served the tea and biscuits. Gabrielle looks up from her stitching and smiles. "Another one? Very well." She giggles softly. "I will tell you the tale of Marthin, breaker of hearts and stealer of virtue, and how the trail of tears that he made his path was ended; how the lovesick girls he left in his wake were avenged."
  6. ANGELIQUE'S STORY Glace I call her my friend, because I had much affection for her, but I do not think she would remember me. She was a quiet girl, a perfect beauty. Her skin was whiter than any I have ever seen before or since, and so was her hair. Her irises were perfectly clear, and in some lighting appeared to shine red as blood, or sometimes violet, a deeper violet than Dalaran's flag. Dalaran had a fantastic library, and I learned a lot about eyes there. I learned why her eyes would sometimes move back and forth rapidly. Why she had such trouble learning to sew. What it meant to have colorless irises. Her father was Fearnorn Glasslenfaire, a teacher. I studied under him long enough to know arcane magic was not going to be my specialty! He was rumored to turn lazy, wayward students into chicken or sheep or pigs, though I never saw this happen. He also made passes at most of his young students, male or female indiscriminately, and married one of them, giving Angelique a stepmother. Mrs. Glasslenfaire was not a particularly wicked stepmother, but it was clear she loved her stepdaughter not. She feared her, I could see, and when a woman fears another woman, it turns quickly to hatred and jealousy. No one much liked Angelique, and so I liked her more. What a story she had! And how much was forgotten by her short-lived human fellows! She was the beautiful half-orphan, intelligent in ways unmeasurable by the academic standards of the city; sprung up whole out of her father's head, mistrusted by her stepmother. She was the porcelein doll, loved by those who saw her until they realized she was not made of flesh, but of glass and ice. She was Purity, pristine and untainted by any vice, not Pride nor Wrath nor Greed nor Lust, none of those things; and as befitting a passionless creature, she was sterile and unfit for marriage. Too pure for even the sun's rays, when she went out she was veiled and gloved, a ghost wandering the streets of violet Dalaran light. She was a silent, sinless angel, who left one day to study fel magic, who left one day to consort with demons and creatures of the Nether, a shame to her father's house. They all remember her as the inhuman, almost mechanical girl who never made friends or lovers out of anyone. The albino, with all their superstitious ideas about such a person thrust onto her. The humans around her, so short-lived, were glad to forget what I remember. And what I remember is this: Before the world knew Angelique, Fearnorn Glasslenfaire had a son. L'Enfer I remember first seeing him peering out the windows of the manse his family lived in. He was very dark looking, though he was pale, and he captured my little girl heart. We were children, but I enticed and begged his mother to let him come out and play, and we did. This was Fearnorn's first wife, a beautiful but neurotic woman. The boy had something of his mother's wild dark looks about him, deep eyes and curly black hair on pale skin. He was sober and seldom smiled, but I learned what would bring out the smile in him. He was amused by puns and riddles, and by random acts of cruelty to insects and toys. I was so hopelessly in love with him. Sometimes we played in his yard, in a fine rose garden, and sometimes we played in the parlor, where a great white pird of paradise was kept in a gilded cage. We teased the bird, when adults were not looking, and vexed it most sorely. Though quiet, he was such a wild boy. I imagined he would grow to be dark, roguish prince who would use his wits more than his sword arm to protect his lady fair. Such a fire burned in his eyes. We knew each other only a brief while before the servants at the door began turning me away. My aunt took me aside and told me not to bother the Glasslenfaires any longer. Several months later, I learned the mother had died. A few years later, I met Angelique. Where had the boy gone? I asked if anyone knew what had happened to the son of Fearnorn Glasslenfaire, that well-respected philandering mage, and was laughed at. "He never had a son." Angelique was even more reclusive than the boy had been, but we did have occasion to be near each other, growing up. I recall how one day she was caught in the rain, and I took her into a house of a friend of mine. While my friend and I chattered, as girls do, about this or that, Angelique removed her wet clothing to change into some dry ones I had provided. Her back was to me. How I remember clearly the sight of the two long slashes of scar tissue, the only mark on her perfect white skin. Vertical scars, around her shoulderblades. After she had gone I asked my friend what she thought had made those scars. "Scars?" she said, perplexed. "Gabrielle, I do not know what you are talking about." She left Dalaran before I did. Where is she now? I do not know, though I imagine her clearly, in a humble cottage somewhere, with half a dozen or so dwarven miners, men of honor who cut her fine jewelry and worship at her feet but do not lay a hand on her. They bring her books to study dark magic with, and are hopelessly in love with her, but do not approach her for sexual favors. For she is still pure, and cannot be tainted by an outside force: No, Angelique's only Corruption will come from within. From beyond her still and perfect face, from behind those eyes that flicker a violent red in certain lights; where at her soul a dark-eyed boy rages quietly at the world, flexing his wings, preparing for escape, for flight.
  7. Gabrielle sits neatly in a blue-cushioned chair. She is working on a delicate cross-stich pattern, the cream-colored cloth held in place by a wooden spring tension hoop. She selects a length of green floss and threads it through her needle, and begins sewing. The pattern so far suggests a dragon, in a flower garden perhaps, but she is not working through it methodically; portions have been stitched in randomly, half a rose trellis here, a butterfly there, and there a pair of leathery green-black wings poised in front of a modest fountain. Not bending her back as she works, merely inclining her head, she smiles and looks up. "Dalaran?" Her voice is sweet. "I used to live there. It was beautiful, before the Scourge destroyed it. I might have liked to continue living there, but they no longer welcome my kind. My family is aligned with the Sin'Dorei, not the Quel'Dorei. That is not the story I have, not the story I will tell you." Her eyes glint with mischief. She ties off and cuts the green thread, having given the dragon three shapes which might turn into toes or talons when other shades of green are added. She selects a strand of purest white and begins stitching a round object, high in the sky, the first hint that the picture she is making is of night-time. "My tale for you today is of my childhood friend. Angelique."
  8. The old crone, crouched under a bush with her painfully arthritic knees tucked up to her chin, watched the big dumb hunter following the tracks she'd magicked herself. He was a tall elf boy, with long flowing golden-red hair and a broad muscular chest tapering to a tiny waist. The crone's eyes gleamed with greed as the elf followed her tracks, bow out, arrow notched and ready. So intent was he on these strangely captivating "deer" tracks that he did not see the trap, the face-high tree branch tied back. He did not see until the crone released the trap, letting the branch fly square into his face. He dropped without a cry, his face bruised and bloody. The crone cackled to herself and stood painfully, and walked over to the elf. She searched his clothes for anything she could sell. One of the bags he carried was full of woman's things, pretty dainty things. In the fallen elf's quiver, she found a tarnished portrait frame in his pocket. "My, my, my. What is this? Your lady-love?" The crone grinned a toothless grin, turning the picture over in her hands. A wicked idea formed in her head. The dainty things in the backpack he carried would never fit him. He must be travelling with this girl. The crone knew it for certainty. She could see the tale as if it was happening: Th robust young hunter, escorting his maiden fair through the perilous woods. The old witch longing to be beautiful again. The maiden fair trading her life for her man's, her pure heart leading her to the ultimate sacrifice. "Ohoho. I love a good fairy tale." The crone began setting the stage. The maiden fair was a girl just into adulthood according to the custom of the Elves. Skin as white as snow, but with a rosy youthful glow. Hair as black as a frozen lake on a starless winter night, lips as red as blood. A trim figure, a soft and delicate face. She wore a thick red cloak over a simple dress, because it was cold this time of year. But the humans of Dalaran did not welcome one whose parents dwelt in Quel'Thalas, not any longer, so she and her escort were returning to their homeland, alone through the perilous woods. He had gone to hunt for dinner, and so she was gathering firewood, when a little brown bird landed on a bush in front of her. The maiden stood and looked at the bird, which said in a small sweet voice, "If you wish your man to live, follow this bird, my messenger." "Oh my!" The elf maiden looked frightened, and dropped the twigs she had been gathering. She followed the bird. It led her to a rotting and filthy cottage which was supported by three dead, lightning-struck trees. Timidly the maiden went up to the door and knocked. "Hello?" she called out, in Common. The door creaked open. "Oh my..." The maiden crept inside, the heals of her boots creaking every board she crossed. The inside was as unkempt as the outside, but a fire burned somewhere. The fair elf maiden went toward it, through rooms crooked and cobwebbed. "Hello? Please do not harm us, we are only travellers..." Her voice echoed in the near-empty house. The crone, the witch, limped over to the boiling pot, and dipped a rusty metal ladle into it. She pulled it out and the liquid cooled. It was a clear brown color, looking like broth, but it was not broth, oh no. The witch grinned and turned slowly, careful not to spill any. By the time she had turned around, the young maiden from the portrait was in the kitchen doorway. She looked perplexed. "Excuse me, human, have you seen a tall handsome hunter? An elf like me?" "Yes," said the witch, barely containing her excitement as she toddled over to the young maiden. "Yes." She paused, savoring the expectant, nervous look on the girl's face. "He's dead. Ha!" She flung the ladle's contents at the girl. Before the girl could even scream, she was frozen, paralyzed. The witch laughed. "Do not be frightened, my pet. It won't last long. You will be able to squirm and scream for me as I cut your heart out." She cackled again, and began maneuvering the girl toward the corner. In this corner, which had a shuttered window by it, was a length of dirty rope. "It will take a while to get the ingredients together. And then I will be young and beautiful again, and you will be dead. I will wear your face and have as many men as I want. Ha!" A tear escaped the fair maiden's eye and trickled down her cheek. The witch pulled the girl's hands over her head, and stood on a stool to bind them with a length of rope which hung from the ceiling. Satisfied with the knots, the witch then went to empty the pot and make the next spell ready. The evening darkened to night, and the paralyzing brew wore off enough for the girl to talk. To beg for her life, to weep. The witch ignored her every plea, only speaking to her just before dawn. "My pretty, it won't do you any good. Your huntsman will not save you. You walked into my lair of your own free will. Do you know what happens to fair maidens, without an escort, who walk of their own free will into a trap? Do you know the stories?" The elf sobbed, hiding her face against her painfully upraised arm. "It's called a virgin sacrifice, poppet." "How... how do you know I am a virgin?" The crone cackled. "A woman's intuition, popsy, a woman's intuition. Heh. I met your escort, my dear. Queer as a three-legged gnome." The girl shook her head. "Please..." Such beauty she had, that her tears came down in neat streaks, and she only sniffled a little. "At least open the window, that I may see the sunlight one last time." The witch stirred her brew, and shrugged. She went to the window by her captive, and opened the shutters. One of them broke off, so frail it was. "Look, my girl, I think there was a garden there once. Do you like gardens?" "Y-yes..." "Good, because I'm going to bury your remains there! Hah!" That day was spent listening to the fair maiden plead for food, for water, for mercy. She recieved none. Tonight, towards dawn, the moon would be ripe, and the spell's power would peak. The witch would lose her old age and the maiden would lose her life. There was a necessary mushroom the witch was growing out in that garden. That night, just before dawn, while the exhausted elf girl slept, the witch went out and gathered the mushroom. So excited she was that she danced and kicked her heels, singing softly to herself, "Old Gab, Old Gab, you'll be crowned the fairest of Stormwind!" Gab was her name, though not a person alive remembered it. She would take a new name, to go with her new face and body, and her story would not end out here in the miserable wood. It would end with this: And she went back to the city, where the men fought for her attention and the women envied and admired her. And she went back to the city, and lived happily ever after. She looked up, and felt the moon was right. She did not see it, for it had long since sunk beyond the horizon; but she and it were old friends, and she knew its moods. Gab went back in the cottage to where the sleeping elf maiden hung. She removed the pot, the witch's brew, from the fireplace, grunting with the effort. But she did not spill. Oh no, Gab was careful. She crumbled the soft, moist mushroom into the brew, grinning and imagining the adventures she was about to have, using this girl's face. From behind her came a chuckle, sweet and innocent. "Gab." The witch froze. She cursed herself for a fool. "How careless! You do not know the right stories, Gab. Or you would know not to reveal your true name to your enemy. Turn and face me, Gab, I have power over you." And it was true. The witch turned, against her will, and faced her captive maiden fair. The girl was wide awake, and no longer seemed weary or frightened. Her smirk was all the more devillish for being on such a sweet, innocent face. "This--This is not how it ends!" The witch's voice was a shriek, a squeal. "There is no hunstman to save you! You are alone, and--" "Be quiet, Gab." She used the witch's true name, and the witch could not do anything but obey. "I am alone, yes, and my hunstman is not here to rescue me. But you have my role wrong. I am not the virgin sacrifice, whose kind heart and fair face must be destroyed in the end, because they are too good for this world." She smiled, like a cat, her green eyes glowing in the dark. Like a cat... "What are you, then?" the witch demanded, still unable to move. "I am the clever maiden, Gab. And the pretty, clever maidens always win." With that she twisted her hands to grip the rope above her, and pulled herself up, lifting her feet. A whoosh of wool and lace and high-heeled boot came towards Gab, hitting her sharply in the chest, and her frail body fell backwards, tripping over the pot, stumbling into the fireplace. The fireplace, which still burned hot and bright. The witch tried to stand, but something was wrong with her hip, and she could only crawl towards her captive, burning and cursing. The fair maiden whistled through her teeth. At the window her hunstman appeared. "I never thought I'd have occasion to feign death! Did we win again?" "Not yet. You still have to rescue me." He grinned, and stepped in through the window. He batted away the witch like she was an insect, sending the burning old woman sprawling, and used his hunting knife to cut down his maiden fair. She fell into his strong arms, and he carried her out the window. By now the kitchen was on fire; soon, the cottage and the three dead lightning-struck trees would burn. "I am so very glad," her huntsman said, setting her on her feet once they were beyond the garden, "I met you, Gabrielle." Gabrielle smiled up at him. She felt weak, after a day without food or water. As if reading her mind, her escort handed her a healing potion, which she drank gratefully. "And I you, sir." She pulled her red riding hood up over her head and shivered. "To Quel'Thalas? I am done vanquishing witches. I hear there are dragons to slay..." "To Quel'Thalas!" They linked arms, and Gabrielle glanced back at her escort. His golden-red hair was lit from behind by fire, the fire that was cleansing the wood of the evil witch's cabin. Queer as a three-legged gnome indeed. Why would she want an escort who would lust after her? She could not be unfaithful to her future prince. "Shall I sing for you, my lady?" "Oh yes, do!" In a marvelous tenor voice which rang in the night, he sang: Early one morning, just as the sun was rising, I heard a maid singing in the valley below Gabrielle smiled and joined in, with a soprano voice as sweet as honey: O don't deceive me, O do not leave me! How could you use a poor maiden so? And they walked from the burning cottage towards the east, towards the dawn, where their true adventures would begin.