The thunder of the drums and the cracking wood in the fire filled Maeve’s ears. The soft dirt beneath her feet rose in a mist around her ankles as she danced. Her anklets and bracelets chimed gaily with each move and turn. Someone in the crowd gathering around her pulled out a flute to play in time with the drums. She harmonized her movements with the music and the flames, a macabre ballet of tragedy that fuels the blood.
She teased the fire with her hands as she danced, feeling the warm hug over her skin. She moved until she was so close to the flames they were almost one. The short sapphire skirt that clung to her hips and the matching tube top were flame retardant and had been doused with water for good measure prior. The flames wouldn’t hurt her body she could leave her dark blue hair down and let it float about her with out fear, but she would just soon not have the flames consume her clothing. Images manifested in the flames along with her. The fire was big enough that she could create a dance partner made of flames and together they glided gracefully around the fire. It looked like a shadow, if shadows could be made of light, malformed and intangible.
When Maeve was done there were applause, there were always applause. She picked up the small bag that had collected her night’s earnings and the long grey cloak beside it. After brushing the dirt off she put it on without the hood and wrapped it around herself. She headed into the bar and away from the bonfire. She ordered a pint of what she assumed was something with alcohol that would hopefully not kill her or blind her. She had been fully prepared to pay for the drink herself but and wrinkle man with about three teeth and the same number of hair on his head offered to pay for her after proposing marriage. With a companionable laugh she declined the ring but took the drink and made her way to a table in the corner of the room.
From here Maeve could see the front entrance all the windows and was close enough to the back entrance to make a quick getaway if need be. No one knew her here, she was safe, but still she watched the people in the bar, spotted and memorized weapons, strengths, weaknesses, loyalties. She saw people watching like her, drifters with haunted and cold eyes. She was always leaving, a nomad through and through. She never stopped to wonder if there was no one to chase her if she would stay in one place. No reason to question it when she did in fact have people looking to find her. Unconsciously she rubbed at her wrists and the scars that were kept hidden by her bracelets. A man at the bar caught her eye. He was enthralling a half drunk woman with his ability to turn water into ice. Her hand instinctively clutched around the hilt of the knife she hid in her cloak when someone bumped into her. He muttered an apology and staggered off. She made her face calm and hoped the momentary jolt had gone unnoticed. After checking to make sure he hadn’t stolen anything from her she leaned back in her chair to enjoy the drink, which wasn’t half bad and hadn’t made her go blind.
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