(( Once again, the OOC note below this was written by "Wendy", Nadezhda's writer. ))
((Once again, Adri and I each wrote parts of this section of the story.))
The odd pair of friends rode up the barest hint of a twisting path. The dreadsteed bearing the almost preternaturally self-assured blood elf in fine silks was leading by default, while the nervous Forsaken in black mageweave kept her mount nearly apace. Through the brush, an old, partially repaired manor house grew more visible as they advanced.
"Ah!" Jendria exclaimed with a smile. "It would appear that Maltus has been here since I last was, given the state of the repairs."
"Maltus?" Naddie said, the mention of the familiar name breaking her out of her thoughts. She chuckled and gave a quick shake of her head. "It would be good to see him," she continued as she looked up to survey the manor. "He has certainly made this place something of a home once again."
As the two dismounted to enter, the sin'dorei dismissed her steed. From the shadowy gateway of its disappearance, an imp tumbled forth to trail after its mistress, making only token protests as it cavorted along. "Yes, Rupgup, you'll get to burn some brush again... but only after you've helped clean up some. I won't ruin Naddie's lovely new dress by having her lie in dust and common cobwebs." The imp cackled something incomprehensible in reply as the three entered into the building.
Pausing only long enough for a brief look around, Jendria looked over to assess her friend's anxiousness. "I suspect my room here is in the best condition for what we're about. Shall we?" Only half listening for any response, she started up the stairs and toward the third room along the hallway, which opened in response to a flash of green from her hand as she approached. Sweeping in, she set her imp to work on dusting, which did not take it any longer than it took her to move one of the chairs next to the bed and arrange it to her satisfaction.
The Fosaken, having followed Jendria up the stairs, then slowly lowered herself onto the bed, leaning back slightly onto the array of opulent pillows behind her. "I suppose," she began hesitantly, "that it is best for me to lie down?"
After settling into the chair, Jendria eyed her reclining companion and sighed softly. "When used between those practiced with these crystals, it is possible to be seated, or sometimes even strolling about. Given that Wendy will not have been able to keep intensity or... hmm.... inadvertent associations from being part of her sending, and that you don't have the experience to distance yourself from what's recorded, however, I don't want to risk any injury to you. As such, it is best to proceed as though sending you into a dream... or perhaps a vision, if you've ever been guided by the Light that way?"
Naddie nodded as she settled herself into place on the bed. "I have experienced sendings such as you have described, when the Light has been gracious enough to grant me such a privilege."
Nodding to herself, Dree sighed softly. "Well, then, to get it started for you... you'll need to open yourself to what's inside the crystal. This will probably be helped if you think about things you had in common back when. By that I mostly mean songs, or perhaps silly phrases, or other memories that would be of just the two of you." She unwrapped the sliver of ruby-like crystal as she spoke, keeping the part she was touching still in silk, but with the rest exposed for Nadezhda to take. "I suspect Jehanne will have given Wendy similar instructions in how to focus it upon you, in any case. I'm afraid I can't do this part for you, or I would be the one receiving the message instead. I can't do that to her or to you, even if you were to ... well, shock me, really... and ask it of me." With a smile, she added, "Really, just don't try too hard... it's a matter of letting down barriers while holding the crystal, and even the touch only helps. Relax, don't be too tense about it, and focus on the fact that it's contact with her... the rest will follow on its own."
The woman sighed as she reached out to take the crystal into her hands. She gave it an odd look as it touched the skin that remained on her fingers - she had expected it to have some sort of instant reaction the second she picked it up. Instead, she felt its slight weight in her palms, and she stole a glance out the window at the evening sky before she attempted to focus her thoughts.
A memory of her and Blodwyen, Naddie thought, a song. She fixed her eyes on the crystal and tried to envision the farmhouse in Westfall - the small bedroom in which her two children slept. Blodwyen's bed had been at the farm end of the room, under the window, she recalled; and Edward's had been near the door. Each night, when they were quite young, she had sat on the stool between their beds and told them stories or sung songs until her children fell asleep. But how would she remember such things now?
And then, as Naddie stared at the crystal, a few bars of an old familiar song drifted into her mind. At first, it was just some wandering notes of the melody, over and over. She began to hum the song, pausing to go back to the beginning when she could make it no farther. Though it took her several minutes, Naddie finally made her way through the entire song and then began it once again.
Finally, as the song neared its end, she remembered the words and began to sing softly, aloud.
"The primrose in the sheltered nook,
The crystal stream in the babbling brook,
All these things the Light has made
For very love of thee.
The twilight and the shadows fall,
Peace to the Light's children all,
Angels are guarding
And they watch o'er thee."
The Forsaken's eyes closed, though her frail hands remained wrapped around the crystal.