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Ceres

[PP-2] <<Feeding the Enemy>> You're Never Alone

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Down the streets of Delilah she walked, new hair accessory glinting faintly in the morning sun. A white Lilly attached to her hair with a glimmering golden pin. It was a stark contrast to her wine red hair. Ceres wanted to head to a cafe, she was hungry - and nothing made her feel better like freshly baked bread with butter - and a nice hot cup of tea to accompany it. Despite her hunger her stead was slow, leisurely. Ceres had been very busy as of late and just wanted to take a step back to enjoy things. She had grown exponentially. There was no need to rush now.

"Hey...hey you over there..." Came an old withered voice.

"Eh? Me?" Ceres asked as she pointed to herself, an old lady was calling Ceres over to her. She had a small stall set up in a cramped space between two buildings. The stall was unassuming and made of wood - she couldn't tell if the woman was selling anything or not. She had a weary smile, and her left eye looked like it was made of glass.

"Yes you, come, come..."  Out came a spindly hand to beckon her forward.

Ceres glanced around awkwardly before approaching the strange woman. "Can... I help you?"

"You know you can tame monsters around these parts... you look a little lonely...wouldn't you love a companion of your own?"

Ceres stared at the woman like she was mad. Taming monsters? She blinked - and in that moment she realized what this was. She had seen others with it. Familiars. "Oh..oh....." Ceres' eyes lit up as she clasped her hands together - "Yes! I would! How?"

A chuckle came from the old womans lips as she reached down below the wooden stand and pulled out a small bag, handing it over to Ceres- once Ceres had accepted it she noted the items name. <<Familiar Food>> Beneath it was a quick explanation on how to obtain a familiar. Ceres gave the woman a small bow as she turned on her heel. Smiling.

"Well...I guess I do have something today...but first..." She patted her stomach. "Food..."

Ceres had ordered exactly what she was craving, freshly baked rosemary bread. Slathered atop its steaming surface was a creamy golden yellow butter that oozed into the pillowy crevices of the bread. She held it up to her nose and inhaled deeply. "Mmm this is nice..."
 

 

@Ronnel

 

CERES STATS
Level 15 | 300 HP | 30 Energy
DAM 3 | 1 MIT | 3 ACC | 5 LD
Gatherer + Fishing 




EQUIPPED ITEMS
1H Sword - +1 Damage
Peruvian Lily Corsage - +3LD
Gold Feather Hairpin +3 ACC

BATTLE READY INVENTORY
4 X Starter HP Potions (+50HP) | 3 x Silver Keys

Spyglass:  [3 Charges] | Use to reduce the number of posts required to search for a dungeon or familiar by 5 posts. Effect lasts for one thread. Item is destroyed once all charges have been used.
2 x Gold Keys ( +2 to LD when opening treasure chests)

 

 

Edited by Ceres

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Ronnel made his way through the city on the second floor slowly, taking his time. He hadn’t been here very often - most everything he had done had been on the first floor as he worked his way through the quests available so he could get familiar with the mechanics. So times like this, where he just made his way around and took in the sights, were few and far between. He ran one hand through his hair as he let out a slow breath. He would prefer at least walking and chatting with a friend - but the number of people that he knew could be counted on one hand with fingers to spare. Of those, only one was actually on his Friend List - and she couldn’t just come into a town. So on he went, walking the streets alone.

 

At least, that is what he thought, until he spotted bright red hair that was faintly familiar. It took him a moment as the girl ate, to actually place where he knew her from - then he snapped his fingers. Right - that was Ceres, the shop owner of “Best Kept Secret” - where he’d bought the spyglass that he was planning on using to search for a partner. The redhead seemed to be occupied though, happily munching away at a piece of bread as she sat at one of the tables at the cafe. Ronnel tilted his head to one side, then shrugged - no harm in it at least.

 

He ambled over in her direction, letting her finish her snack before he cleared his throat as he leaned against the rail at the edge of the cafe’s seating area. “Hoi there, Miss Ceres, fine day isn’t it?” He gave her a pleasant smile. “How are you doing today?”

 

 

Ronnel: 

Level: 9 

HP: 180/180 EN: 18/18

DAM: 5

Mit: 26

Acc: 1

 

Gear:

Armor:

Tem Armor: +1 Slot MIT ; +2 Slots Heavy Momentum 

Pup's Greaves: +1 Slot MIT

Weapon:

Varathra: 2 Handed Assault Spear +1 Dam, +1 ACC, +1 Bleed 

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“Oh!” Ceres cried out in surprise. “It’s you Puppy!” She gestured to the seat in front of her. “Please take a seat,” he chuckled and pulled out the chair to sit opposite her.

“I’m just finishing up some bread. Ohh It’s so nice here!” Ceres ripped it in half and grabbed his hand, placing the bread- still oozing with butter into his palm. “Isn’t it nice?”


Ronnel blinked once, then looked down at the bread before returning his gaze to her. With a slight tilt to his head and a shrug of one shoulder he lifted it up and took a bite of one end, and chewed it. "Huh. Not bad."

Ceres laughed as she sat back down. “Right! It’s one of my favorite things to eat - and I don’t have to worry about watching my figure, so I can eat as much of it as I want!” She took a big bite of the bread, and continued to talk with her mouth full.

“I’m goob tobay! Gon do the fabibmirar quest!” She said. Translation; Ceres was planning on taking the familiar quest today.

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It took the dark haired man a moment to process what she was saying, and he suppressed a wry chuckle. She was just so bloody enthusiastic about things that it was touching. "The familiar quest, huh? Mind if I tag along? I was thinking about doing that soon myself, but I don't mind helping you out if you'd like?"  

 

She swallowed and wiped her face with the back of her hand. “Sure! I’d love that! I want to get a cute little squirrel! We could probably find one on this floor~”

 

Ronnel spun the piece of bread that she'd given him around in his palm and nibbled off a bit of the bread as he listened/thought. Having a companion of his own sounded nice - and the familiar was someone, or rather, something, that he knew he could trust. So if he helped Ceres out he could get a glimpse at what went on during the quest so he wasn't caught off guard when he went to do it himself. 

 

“A squirrel, hmm? That’s…” He chuckled. Small and cute. He didn’t know if it was an intentional theme with the girl, but it did seem to come naturally to her. “Yeah, I think they’re easily found on this level. Alright well - go ahead and invite me when you’re ready, so you’re the party leader.” Ronnel chuckled softly as he sat back and took another bite of the bread.

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Ceres nodded as she opened up her menu, inviting him to the party. “You can tag along, I’d enjoy the company. We’ve only spoken in my store, so it’d be nice to get to know you more.”

Ceres tugged on her hair as she shifted her lilac eyes to the people in the streets. “Squirrels and chipmunks and stuff they’re foragers, right? That is what my build is based off. So I thought it fitting.” Ceres turned back to Ronnel. “Besides, its not like I’d ever be able to have one as a pet in the real world, so why not have one here? It’s small enough to take with me everywhere I go also its warm and fuzzy.” Ceres gave Ronnel a warm smile, “And...I think in these trying times, thats what we all need. Right?”

"Hmmm. You might be right there. People are all caught up in this whole debacle that we lose sight of some of the nicer things."

“Oh…” Ceres pulled out a small object and placed it on the table. “This is a spyglass. It’ll help us find it quicker! So I’m ready whenever you are Puppy.”

@Ronnel

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"Why do you call me that anyway?" Ronnel stood up slowly, stretching out his back as he gave his gear a final check over. Everything seemed to be in order, and unless they ran into something completely unexpected he would be able to cover for her. "Oh, right, you might laugh at this." He chuckled and opened up the description for his greaves, forwarding it over to her for her to read. 

 

"And I don't know what kind of build I'm going for myself, so you've already got more thought in on what you're doing and what kind of companion you want. I'm just kinda.. Going with the flow for right now." He shrugged slightly as he accepted the invite to her party. The dark- haired man popped the rest of the bread into his mouth and finished it off before holding out one hand to help Ceres up. 

 

"Shall we go then Miss Ceres?" 

 

@Ceres

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Ceres pursed her lips when he asked her the question. "Oh..." She laughed softly. "Honestly... I didn't even realize! I'm sorry! I just..." Ceres pointed to him. "You really look like a big lost puppy. I don't know why." She read the description of his greaves and gave a few nods of affirmation. "Mhmmm Mhmmm, See, even the game agrees with me. You're Puppy." Ceres said with another nod. "Err... Unless you don't like it?"
 

"Eh, it's fine. Puppies are usually well liked." The man chuckled softly. 

Ceres reached out to clasp his hand, it was giant and practically enveloped hers. “Okay. Follow me~” She cheerily said as she shifted past him, leading Ronnel out into the wilderness. 

“Oh…” She paused as they were leaving the safe zone. There was a boulder nearby. Ceres pointed to it. “Mind if we stop there before heading into the forest? I’m also kinda wanting to gather some materials...I’m running low for my store.”

Ceres didn’t wait for a response, she left Ronnels side and headed over to the rock. “Hrmmm..” Usually materials would be shoved just underneath it, it was too heavy for her to lift but she could see a few glimmers hidden amongst the grass, Ceres carefully pried them out from under the rock and held them up to Ronnel. "Lookit that! So lucky!"

@Ronnel

 


ID# 133906 LD 12+5 =17=SUCCESS
CD: 4 =1 Bonus
2 T1 Materials Gathered Total

Edited by Ceres

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"That's fine, I don't mind." Sweet goodness she's this enthusiastic about everything, isn't she? She seemed ecstatic to find the materials that she did, and Ronnel laughed softly. 

"You've far better luck at that than I do, that's for sure. I basically stumbled across all the materials I needed when I was doing the lessons are free chain." He gave her a rueful smile. "Sat on one, actually." But she was right - if she was this adept at foraging and gathering, then a squirrel or a chipmunk would make a perfectly suited companion for her. And he knew there was some way to specialize them, either to cover one of your own shortcomings or to make a strength stronger. 

"I guess if I can ever settle on a trade I'll make it a note to visit your store for any materials I might need." He grinned. 



 

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Ceres pouted when he mentioned that quest line. "I really don't want to think about that whole quest line....I did it all in a single day and regretted it so much! I had nothing! No real useful skills, back then I had a dagger instead of a sword ...and I just..." She buried her head in her hands. "Hannah was so lovely...why couldn't it just end with her....why did the last thing have to involve a Sword Fish?"

She hated thinking about it, how her throat was hoarse and dry as she shouted at a Sword Fish... no skills, no idea how the game worked. The most basic of gear. If she could do it again - and she wouldn't unless someone paid her 10,000k Col she'd make sure she had a few more Sword Arts under her belt, or at least buffs that would help her aim better.

"Puppppyyyyyy...." Ceres groaned as she tugged on him, practically hanging off the hem of his sleeve. "Did you find that fish annoying too?"

@Ronnel

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Ronnel blinked as the girl hung off his sleeve, tugging at it for his attention. In this moment she reminded him of his youngest sister, when she was whining and trying to get his focus for something or another. Automatically he reached up and ruffled her hair as he chuckled. 

"Haven't fought it yet. If it's a single target I don't think I'll have too much trouble with it though - unintentionally I've kinda become a combat focused guy, mostly because I can't figure out what I want to do." He laughed. "Honestly. I had more trouble with the boar pups, because they wouldn't drop the bleedin' tusks I needed. I feel like I set back the boar population by a generation or something with how many I killed." He gave a rueful smile. Since then he'd gotten a bit better equipped, so that wouldn't be quite as bad. 

" And Hannah was nice enough. Her drawing skills were quite good." 

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Ceres pulled away from him, her cheeks hot with a flush as he had reached out to tousle her hair. She swatted him away and smoothed out her rose-red bangs. Pouting at him. "Y-yeh...well..." Her blush grew as she admitted to him that she fought it with no skills whatsoever, and that she was a dagger user at the time. Ceres gave an exasperated sigh. "Could you imagine me hanging off the side of that boat, uselessly waving around a tiny dagger!?"

 

He laughed. Threw his head back and laughed. "Oh you poor little thing. I bet you looked just this side of a cute drowned rat." He was clearly bemused, a wide grin splitting his lips as he looked back at her. 


“What! N-No!” Ceres said as she uselessly batted against his armour. “It was the fish that was drowning! In uhm…” She shook her head and pulled out the Spyglass.

“Did you know this should cut our search time in almost half and that I could totally see all your pores if I held it up to my eyes like this.” She said rather quickly, holding the object up to her eyes to stare at Ronnel.

The flustered embarassment she felt quickly left as she laughed, seeing nothing but one big reddish eye. “Eye see you!” Ceres said with a laugh.

“C’mon Puppy. We got cute fuzzy creatures to catch.” Ceres said as they continued forward into the forest.

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It was official. She certainly wasn't his sister but she had nearly the same reactions to being teased - including a rapid, drastic subject change. Ronnel laughed and shook his head as he followed after her. And thinking of her as his sister definitely helped ease any tension from the girl having just about zero concept of personal space. He knew she didn't mean anything by it - it was likely just a part of her enthusiasm - so having a way of categorizing it helped. 

 

"Well, just one probably. Honestly, if I had a choice on what my companion would be… It'd be an owl, probably. I love the things." 

 

“I bet it’d be a Hoot!” Came her cheerful reply. Ronnel blinked and looked at the back of her head for a long moment. 

 

"I don't know whether to laugh or try to slap the back of your head for that." He deadpanned. "Besides I haven't even seen an owl on this floor, so I'll probably have to go to a different one to find them."

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Ceres pulled the spyglass away from her eyes. They were well and truly in the forest now. "Owls....ooh I know where to find them." Ceres said with a wink. "But it'll cost you and - Oh Hang on! I want to search for some more materials..." Ceres ran a few steps up toward a log. "Did you know the last time I looked in a log I found a treasure chest!" She exclaimed. Ceres ducked her head in to peer into the log. Instead of finding a treasure chest a small bat screeched at her.

Ceres screamed a she stumbled backward, landing on her behind. The tiny bat screeched again as it flew up and out of the log. It's dark wings carrying it away to its next hiding place. Ceres could feel her heart beating fast, and it had scared her, but instead of reacting negatively she couldn't help but laugh. She pointed at the log, "Hahaha....what was a bat doing in there? The poor thing! Imagine trying to sleep only to see my stupid face shoved into its bed!" She managed between fits of giggles.

"That poor bat!"

@Ronnel

ID# 133983 LD 9+5 =14=FAIL
2 T1 Materials Gathered Total

Edited by Ceres

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Ronnel had his spear equipped the moment that Ceres began screaming, his heart beating rapidly as he imagined something attacking her face. When the woman fell back and a small, non-hostile bat flew up and out - and then immediately fled - he had paused, blinking. Then her bright, tinkling laughter started. "Uhh.." He hesitated for a moment then shrugged and put his spear away - she was safe and fine. 

 

"I bet it was more the shock of it than anything else. You're small Miss Ceres, but that little guy was absolutely tiny." Ronnel chuckled and shook his head as he held out one hand to help Ceres to her feet. 

 

She placed her hand in his and he wrapped his fingers around hers, his hand almost engulfing hers. With a gentle steady pull he helped her to her feet, his other hand holding her shoulder for a moment to steady her. "There you are, right as rain again." He stepped back and clapped his hands. 

 

"Sticking our faces in unknown holes is a good way to get them bitten, yeah?" His lips creased in a grin as he winked at her. 

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Ronnel lifted her up with ease. Her Lilac eyes widened at how easily her petite hand fit in his, but she didn't say anything about it. Her mind drifted elsewhere, especially when he mentioned that she shouldn't stick her face into unknown holes. "Bitten?" Ceres laughed as she brushed it off. "I don't mind!" She pointed to her nose. "Maybe I'll be lucky enough to catch what we're looking for. Do you think I look enough like a nut?"

Ronnel blinked a few times then chuckled nervously. "I...am going to plead the fifth here." He opened his mouth to say something more but Ceres was already by his side, leaning on him so she could stare up into the trees above.

"Hmmm......" Ceres pursed her lips as she bought the Spyglass to her eye, peering into the treetops. "I don't see any fuzzy lumps around here...Let's go further into the forest." Ceres reached up and grabbed his wrist. "C'mon Puppy, follow me!"

@Ronnel



ID:#134014 LD:9 + 5 = 14 FAIL
(Spyglass in use- next attempt in 10 posts)

Edited by Ceres

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"I feel like I need an adultier adult here." Ronnel laughed as Ceres dragged him on deeper into the forest. He gently disengaged his wrist from her grasp with a light chuckle and shook his head. "Come on now Rosy, you aren't going to just find them tromping through the woods. Slow down and relax - squirrels are skittish little things ya know. Never know who or what might be trying to eat you up when you're that small. So if we're just racing around, they're all gonna hightail it with those fluffy tails." Ceres hummed but didn't really seem to be listening to him, her amethyst eyes busy scanning the tree lines. Though she did slow down a little bit, but that might have been just from the fact that she wasn't hanging onto his arm any more. 

"At least we can rule out any squirrels being deep in caves or out in the fields so it'll be easier to look for them.” Ronnel looked up and frowned, wincing as the sun glinted against his eyes through some of the tree branches. He didn’t see any squirrels himself, but kept quiet so he didn’t upset the girl any. It was a bit refreshing to be out walking in the woods like this and not have it be for hunting some monster or another down.
 

“Haven’t just taken a walk in a fair minute, I suppose.” Ronnel paused when he thought he saw the glint of a material through some bushes - but when he got closer to look, he saw it was just a shiny rock that other than its shine, was completely pointless. He grunted and set it back down, likely fallen from a crow’s nest or something. 

 

Material Search

ID: 134040

LD: 6 FAIL

Edited by Ronnel

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"I'm an adult." Ceres said simply in response. "But who ever said you needed to loose your innocence when that happens? Who dictactes how an 'adult' should act. Why can't we jump in rain puddles or create fantasy stories? I do my taxes. I pay my rent. I'm an adultier adult thank you very much!" Ceres ended with a snort as she reached out and lightly jabbed him in the chest with her spyglass.

"Rosy?" Her brow furrowed as she turned to stare at him. What kind of name was that? It was...kinda...odd? Maybe? Ceres shrugged her shoulders. She wouldn't tell him not to call her that, besides she had been calling him puppy since they met.  Ceres didn't like the fact that he had told her to slow down. She was simply moving to a different part of the forest. "You're putting a damper on things yanno." Ceres said simply as she turned to face him, now walking backwards. "We aren't stomping through the woods, and I am relaxed. Very much so." Ceres wagged the spyglass at Ronnel. "If anything you're the one worrying about everything."

Ceres crossed her arms over her chest. "You know...Ronnel...If you don't want to be here just tell me." Her voice was a little more quiet than it usually was. Did he change his attitude? Or was he always like this and she was simply barrrelling him over? Was this what NIGHT meant when NIGHT said Ceres could be extremely forward at  times?

"I'm used to gathering and searching for things on my own anyway!" Ceres said as the smile returned to her face.

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"Hmm?" Ronnel blinked twice and stared at the young woman, scratching the side of his head with one hand. "What? No, no." Rosy just didn't fit the image of the girl, and trying to think of something that actually did work for her was distracting him. Not enough to miss the worry in her voice though. 

"No. Miss Ceres, if I didn't want to be here, I wouldn't be. Remember, I asked you to let me join you for the company." He gave her a slight smile. "Sorry. You've just reminded me of my own little sister and the walks we would take on camping trips. She was always running off and bouncing off the trees, and you've got the same kind of energy about you. Even if you're an adultier adult." He chuckled then reached over and plopped a hand on her head, ruffling her hair. 

"Besides little firecracker even if you're used to doing it on your own - that doesn't mean you like it. I for one hate being alone even if I'm used to it myself." For some reason the thought of this vivacious and bright redhead being left to her own devices, without company, just struck Ronnel as wrong. And he wasn't sure, but he felt like that last smile was a little too forced. 

"So no, sorry not sorry, you're stuck with me til you tell me to take a long walk off a short pier."

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Ceres sighed when Ronnel assured her that he was happy to be here. "I know I can be awkward with my mannerisms...." She mumbled, turning her lilac gaze away from him. She knew, but she often was so lost and caught up in the moment. She knew she was overenthusiastic about everything, she knew she took joy in the smallest of things and it annoyed others. "So I get that if you wanted to rescind your offer, I'd be fine with it." Ceres gave him a grin. "I have lots of fun, even on my own. And I have others who I could invite out too. It's not like I'm lonely."

Ronnel approached her, apologizing for treating her like a kid. And that it was because she reminded him of his little sister. Ceres tilted her head to the side, tugging on her earring. "Ohh... that must be hard, how old is she?"

Ronnel smiled faintly as his gaze shifted up to the treetops. "She was 15 when I started...so she'd be 17 now I guess."

Ceres wasn't good with comforting others. She reached out and squeezed his arm. "I bet she misses you just as much as you miss her." Came Ceres' simple response. That was the best thing she could say to him in this moment, right? And it wasn't too forward or inappropriate, right?


It was then that Ronnel changed his name for her, now using the term firecracker. "Eh? Firecracker?" The word lifted the mood between them. "I'm not a firecracker!" She retorted with red cheeks. "You are! And I don't mind being alone. I'm used to it. We can find peace in solitary moments, I think we all need them." Ceres snorted as she held the spyglass up to her eye again, using it to focus on the trees ahead. "I don't like piers. I Love water and the ocean...but as long as its not deep. That's just scary."

@Ronnel

 

-6 posts till Familiar Search-

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The dark haired man wasn't about to ruin Ceres' mood now that she was happier. His sister hadn't been able to, or hadn't wanted to, speak to him since his family had disowned him. But he didn't blame the girl - she was young and lived with their parents, and hadn't been getting the abuse and pressure he did. He'd at least been able to shelter her and their brother from that. 

Ronnel laughed as she saw her cheeks turn red. Looked like that was a far better nickname for her, and he didn't blame her. "Hey, I'm not the small and energetic one here. I'm the big dopey puppy, remember? Firecracker?" He gave her a wink and stretched out his back as he looked upwards. She liked oceans, huh? He couldn't blame her, there was something soothing about watching the waves roll in and out. 

"If I went out, which wasn't often because I'll be honest, as you can probably guess from the fact that I'm in here I am a geek," the red-eyed man chuckled softly before continuing. "I always preferred forests like this. Being surrounded by nature was about the only way I could stand some people I knew." Camping trips were about the only time his parents weren't trying to hound him about following his father into business. 

 

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