Still writing this thing! Since I don't really have anything better to post, here's a little stand-alone part from Lark's story. She and Lath have become good friends, and he offers to teach her some weapon skills. Enjoy! (Filler post mutter mutter....)
Lath walked beside Lark as she headed to her camp. "We have a month off this time," he told her cheerfully. "Did so well on the last trip that Boss wants to plan out how he can repeat it. Of course, that means we'll be heading out next time right at the start of the fall rains." He made a face, and she laughed at him. "So," he added as they reached her camp. "Did you want to learn how to swing that club around? Or are you too tired?"
She looked at him, then down at the club. "I suppose it couldn't hurt," she said slowly. "You never know, it might come in handy."
Lath set her to doing some warm-up exercises, then disappeared into the woods. He returned in short order with a club of his own and waved her over. "Come show me your guard," he told her, and Lark obligingly settled into a defensive stance. Lath immediately lowered his club and stared at her incredulously, one eyebrow going up.
Lark offered a sheepish grin. "I take it I'm doing it wrong?"
"Ahh," he replied. "You might say that." He dropped his stick and went over to her. "Let me show you a, ahh, better position." He spent several minutes giving her pointers on her stance, then stepped over to his club and picked it up again. "Now," he announced. "Try to hit me."
An hour and a half later, Lark was sweaty, tired, and aching, both from taking blows from Lath's club and from laughing. Contrary to her disheveled appearance, Lath still looked irritatingly fresh. The druid proved to be quite acrobatic, and the few times she had managed to land a lucky blow on him, his "deaths" were rather... dramatic.
Lark finally grew tired of the "game." The next time Lath baited her teasingly, she bull-rushed him, chasing after when he tried to dodge, and they both fell to the ground in a tangle of arms, legs, and sticks. For the next several minutes the only sound heard was the two elves catching their breath.
Finally Lath raised his head to look at her. "I take it you've had enough?"