Upon arriving in the castle of Elm’ril the party disperses into their own rooms and Elay sneaks off using his cloak to conceal himself and scouts the hallways. Kodomo grabs the bottle of Elven wine that she purchased on their first visit to Elm’ril and decides to bring it to Yasel’s room along with a couple of wine glasses obtained from the kitchen by a servant appointed to comply with each of their requests.
Kodomo stands outside of Yasel’s door and listens for anyone in the hallway and only hears Elay snicker at the sight of Kodomo going to see Yasel bearing alcohol. She decides to knock on the door and when it opens she says,
“Now that we are in the castle and protected to basically the same extent as the queen is…”
She lifts up the wine bottle and glasses, and Yasel opens the door wider to let her in. The two girls start drinking and having a good time while Elay goes to Joktar’s room and, while invisible, informs Joktar of what he has just seen.
After a few hours, Kodomo looks up at Yasel and says,
“You know, you’re a very beautiful woman” as she reaches over to push a strand of Yasel’s hair back behind her ear letting her hand linger on the side of Yasel’s face.
Slightly concerned and a little more alert Yasel responds,
“Thank you… you’re very pretty yourself…” Kodomo leans in to kiss her only to be denied by Yasel moving backwards.
Yasel informs Kodomo that it is against her religion to be in a relationship with a woman, and that it “…in fact, is considered taboo.”
“A lot of people and religions think it’s taboo… why do you care so much about what other people looking on would say? Can’t you just go along with your feelings?” Kodomo retorts.
“Kodomo, I do care about you, just not in that way.” Yasel says calmly.
Kodomo opens her mouth to respond, then she slumps over and passes out, drunk. Yasel picks her up and carries her over to her bed and tucks her in, then enters reverie for 4 hours. Upon awaking, Yasel notices Kodomo is fast asleep and she leaves to train.
Elay, having already meditated, watches invisibly as Yasel emerges from her room and glances in her room to see if Kodomo is still in there, but sees nothing. He continues pacing up and down the hallways going unnoticed by most anyone passing through.
Upon returning to her room, Yasel spots her mother and chats with her for a little while. She informs her mother of Kodomo hitting on her, and Scarlet looks off and says,
“And I thought she was a nice girl…”
“She is! And I want to keep a good relationship with her… just not that kind” Yasel quickly responds.
“That’s good, at least she hasn’t corrupted you.” Scarlet snorts.
Kodomo awakens to an empty room, with a splitting headache and sits up as Yasel opens the door. Yasel asks how Kodomo is feeling, and Kodomo greets her with a smile and says,
“I think I drank a little too much… it seems this always happens when we drink wine here <snickers /> … What happened last night?”
Yasel responds honestly, “You had a little too much, and made a pass at me.”
Kodomo looks away with while her face immediately goes red and apologizes, "I’m so sorry… " then looks back at Yasel, “Did you…” and trails off.
“No, my religion prevents relationships of that kind.”
Kodomo apologizes once again, then gets up and heads toward the door. “Again, I’m really sorry. If you need me, I’m going to go freshen up in my room.”
“I think I’ll take a bath too” says Yasel.
Elay had kept his scouting around Yasel’s room waiting patiently for her to come back. Seeing her preoccupied with her mother, he made larger laps, but did not let her out of his sight. When she opened the door to her room he looked in once again, and this time saw Kodomo with her head in her hands and Yasel shut the door. He then ran back to Joktar’s room, knocked on the door, and informed him of the recent events.
Joktar immediately interested decided to head over to Yasel’s room, and as he lifted his hand to knock on her door, Kodomo opened it almost trampling him. She stopped and waited for him to explain himself. The voice of Yasel came from behind her,
“So, Kodomo, would you like to eat breakfast with my mother this morning?”
Kodomo’s face went white as she said “Does she know?”
“Yes” Yasel responded.
“Sure,” Kodomo replied as Yasel entered her private bathroom.
Joktar, not knowing what had happened, said jokingly “So, you two getting married” and laughed.
Without notice, Kodomo’s hand set itself afire and came flying toward his face. Joktar was too surprised by it, that he had no time to react, and took the full blow to the face.
“Don’t you talk about Yasel like that!” Kodomo exclaimed almost in tears.
“Yeah… she should come out here and slap me too” Joktar looked down “Ya know, Kodomo, you don’t look so well, you want me to come with you? I could spend some points to heal you…”
Kodomo pushed him away and walked of to her room.
Later, at breakfast Kodomo and Scarlet would not make eye-contact with each other. Kodomo just plays with her food, ignoring most of the conversation. After a bite or two, Joktar’s burn heals leaving only a bruise on his face, where Kodomo had punched him earlier. Elay, sensing tension, decides to excuse himself after only a few bites, and conceals himself once again with his cloak, this time out in the open. While invisible, he runs into Vanos warning him that he will have a “fun” meal with his daughter and wife, giggles, and walks off.
Vanos, slightly confused, takes his seat next to his wife and greets Yasel. Getting right on to it, Vanos starts talking about the Vashta Na’rada base, and Kodomo decides to excuse herself after eating only one bite. Yasel realizing that her mother was completely ignoring Kodomo, gives her a look and says,
“<ahem /> Mom?”
Scarlet nodded at Kodomo, who nodded back and left. Upon reaching her room she sent for Ramina Silverfeather, and asked her to bring comfort food.
At the table continues the conversation regarding the base and speculations that Kodomo’s assailant may have been Nightcrawler and that a possible Nightcrawler/Soulcatcher alliance may be forming.
In Kodomo’s room, Ramina brings a tray of sweet rolls. Kodomo spills her heart out to Ramina telling her about how she fell for one of the adventurers in her party, but their religion prevents a relationship with her, and the events of the previous night that she doesn’t even remember, being vague about which party member it happened to be.
A knock on the door, and Kodomo wipes all of the tears from her eyes, and asks who is at the door.
“It’s me, Yasel” came the response.
“Come in.” Kodomo responded.
Yasel immediately apologized for her mother’s behavior hoping that wasn’t why Kodomo had left the table early.
“It’s okay,” Kodomo said, “I pretty much did the same thing to her… Want a sweet roll” Kodomo doing her best to smile.
Yasel declines and then asks Ramina, “Did you tell her about the position?” Ramina shook her head. “Do you mind if I tell her?”
“Go ahead” Ramina says and smiles.
“The queen hired Ramina to be a spy.” Yasel says grinning.
“Oh really?” Kodomo asks with intrigue, “And how is that going?” They all share a laugh and begin some light-hearted conversation.