Summary: Mesmers fight with spells, not snowballs. Mesmers also make it a general point to steer clear of the battles that rage between the other gods; nothing good ever comes from it.
A/N: Yes, I like writing about Maeve. She's a character with so many faults, lots of potential and not enough smarts to use said potential. Xiao just cracks me up and Lucas...well...every party needs a tank who's skull is thicker then a Stone Fury's bottom. I know this is a bit late as well; Wintersday ended January 12, but I was sitting on this chapter and trying to make it work. And while I don't think this is my best, it's certainly better then it once was. So enjoy and thank you to everyone who has deemed this worthy enough of their time and even their reviews.
Warnings: Repeat of previous chapters…has not seen a beta.
Disclaimer: All character professions, cities, and missions are a part of the game Guild Wars, taken from the first game known as Prophecies. This was only intended for enjoyment, not monetary gain or credit for the game's creation. Trust me; I'm too poor anyway for the game designers to even bother suing. Also, the characters, Lucas and Xiao Meilin have been loaned to me on the pretense that I will not torture them to the point of insanity. They are not mine.
What she wouldn't give for a pair of yak fur lined gloves, or a coat with yak fur in two layers. She wouldn't even care if those same articles of clothing didn't have a single rune stitched into them. Just as long as they were warm.
"Come on Maeve! You don't want them to win do you?"
Maeve's only answer was to glare at the entirely too cheerful Monk. It made her even colder just looking at Xiao's clothing which consisted of nothing more then her pants, sandals, and sleeveless vest. "I could care less." She spat before narrowing her eyes. "And why are you on Grenth's side?"
"Dwayna felt sorry and lent him my aid for the duration of this Wintersday." Xiao easily replied even as she scooped up a handful of ice and snow and lobed it at another of Dwayna's side; a Paragon. The poor fool was hit so hard he fell backwards into the snow, laughing as he did so. "Come on Maeve this is a holiday! Aren't Mesmers all about holidays?"
Maeve snorted from her spot huddled by a tree. "Mesmers make it a rule to stay out of the little tiffs between Grenth and Dwayna. Nothing good ever happens between those two."
"And yet here you are with Grenth." Xiao murmured.
"Entirely against my will I assure you." She winced as Xiao smashed another snowball into the Paragon's head just as the man was trying to get up. For a moment the Mesmer thought about yelling to the idiot to just stay down and play dead but it seemed that the Paragon actually thought being pummeled with snow was enjoyable. Or maybe it was just simply a side effect of being hit in the head one too many times with a snowball. "I think I'll stay here. You go on and have 'fun'."
Xiao actually frowned at her, clearly not liking the idea of leaving her all alone. "Are you sure Maeve?"
Maeve rolled her eyes. "Does it look like I'm going to be gutted by a Charr? Go, have whatever you call 'fun' and let me freeze to death in peace."
"You are not going to freeze to death…"
"Of course I am; you didn't even give me a chance to buy new clothes. These are summer clothes."
"Maeve…" the Monk's tone was the kind she used when struggling to remain patient with her and just about any Mesmer for that matter.
Maeve glared at her before pointing in the general direction of the free-for-all. "Go. Please, before Lucas finds my hiding place. Surely you can grant me that little request." At that bit of information even Xiao had to see reason, it would end badly for the new snowball fighter if the Warrior were to find her. The two of them had seen the almost magical transformation of man into monster at the start of the game; it made Maeve dead set of keeping out of his sights until the game ended.
"Alright, if you're sure…"
And it was then that the Fates (or Grenth) decided that one player needed some persuasion. It came in the form of a high pitched whistle of something falling down at high speeds thanks to gravity, the sound giving Maeve just barely enough time to lunge backwards as a beautifully wrapped present smashed into the snow with a loud thump. Snow splashed up in a rather beautiful display of frozen water before creating a small crater around the present. For a second no one moved, not Maeve, not Xiao, and not even the snow-covered Paragon who was just then stirring from his spot on the snow. They just stared at the pretty box which was faintly smoking, though not even the bright purple bow seemed singed. Maeve put this observation due to the fact that she was in shock, pure and simple.
"Over here! Guys over here!" the Paragon shouted at the top of his lungs before being knocked out by another well aimed snowball from a Monk. This time as he crashed into the snow he'd stay down for a bit longer.
"Maeve, get the present! Now!" Xiao ordered as she kneeled fluidly and expertly rolled another snowball. Horrified, Maeve could only look on as the Monk (the very same Monk who preached that even Charr had souls) poked a hole into the snowball with a finger and then slipped in a pebble from the ground.
"Maeve! Present! Move!"
Me? Came the disjointed thought before her mouth opened and the words slipped out. "What? You honestly can't expect me…"
"This is the perfect way to get into the spirit!" Xiao giggled, (Maeve gapped at her for that alone) before looking around warily. "Hurry up before someone comes."
Moving to her knees the Mesmer glared at Xiao through her mask. "You must be joking! I get into the spirit just fine without smacking people with snow, or spiking said snowballs with stone pieces!" Maeve jerked her head to the still-smoking present. "Go do it yourself since you're so into this. Just leave me alone." With that she began to turn away to find solace in the shadows of the trees.
"If you get it to Grenth I'll buy you a new pair of gloves, and a new mask." Xiao wheedled even as she threw her snowball at a Warrior who had come at the sound of the Paragon's voice. With a surprisingly feminine yelp, the man went down, his impressive helm knocked clean off.
Not even an assassin could have moved faster then Maeve when she dove for the gift. "I'm holding you to that Monk!" she shouted even as she swore at the weight of the box. Almost slipping on a patch of ice she righted herself in time and began trudging up the hill as fast as she could.
"Just go!" Xiao snapped back though it lacked any real edge to it as she was giggling like a girl with her first crush.
It was luck, pure and simple luck that got Maeve over the hill before anyone else came for the present. Huffing, she kept to the edges of the battlefield as much as possible, slinking in the shadows of trees, hills, and the odd giant candy cane. She supposed that Dwayna and Grenth had grown some form of humor during their yearly spat over seasonal control. Or at least Dwayna had made them enough times that Grenth no longer cared over something so trivial.
When she saw the giant green monolith of Grenth on the horizon she tried to quicken her steps as much as possible, still keeping to the safety of the trees and candy canes just in case someone tried looking for her. At the last tree she looked around suspiciously for anyone but there was no one, not even other members of her own team, so tossing it to someone else was out. The shadowy avatar of Grenth at the foot of the monolith noticed her and beckoned her quickly with its spindly fingers. Even the Grenchs seemed excited, leaping about but holding the hands over their mouths to keep quiet.
I'm coming. I'm coming. Maeve inwardly grumbled but as she made a slow and steady 'bolt' for the group she couldn't help but smile a little. Nobody was here to lob a snowball at her and she could just hand over the stupid box and then find the nearest tree to hide behind for the rest of the game. And no one could say she hadn't helped out even if Grenth lost the game.
It was then that she noticed that the Grenchs and even the gloomy avatar were looking on in growing horror, their excitement gone. The Grenchs were jabbering in their stupid little squeals and grunts, gesturing wildly at something just beyond her line of vision and even the gloomy avatar in its shadowy cloak was waving wildly at her to hurry.
"Going somewhere Priss?"
Oh no. Oh no. Oh please no. Oh if anyone has any sense of decency then please just make him go away.
"Seems like I found me a Mesmer, and all alone with no one to help her. Your hands look a bit full there Priss, why don't I just take that present from you?"
She didn't even stop walking, instead gritting her teeth and picking up her pace, her muscles screaming at her to stop. Every single spec of her Mesmer pride was in control though, shouting over the muscles 'don't you even think about stopping!'
"Go kiss a Charr." Maeve snapped, or rather gasped. The Grenchs were now all but leaping out of their skins in agitation. I'm not a bloody Warrior! What in the name of Lyssa's Spell is in this evil box? Oh yes, squeal at me to hurry up you overgrown piece of mold; you try holding this infernal thing!
"That's not very nice Maeve. Especially since no one's here to help you if I just decided to take that little present of yours."
"Torment someone else Lucas." Please you overgrown gargoyle, go torment someone else!
She heard the crunching of snow as someone knelt suddenly. Ducking on a whim she thanked whatever luck she had left as the snowball glanced by her ear and smashed itself into the ground. Lucas didn't seem too concerned though as he began whistling some stupid tune, following her slowly as she scrambled up the incline.
"Give it up Mesmer. We're already ahead by three." Lucas cheerfully pointed out.
"Then you won't mind if one measly present goes to Grenth." Maeve snarled. She ducked again but he caught her in the shoulder with a snowball and she stumbled, nearly dropping the gift as she did so. Gloves! Mask!
"I thought you didn't go for this kind of thing Maeve? Something about 'wanting to stay warm and ignoring the idiocy of Wintersday', were you words."
Shivering from the snow that had started to melt through her outer coat, Maeve didn't bother answering, focusing instead on the Grenchs as they hopped from one foot to another. She was almost there, barely ten feet away, if the present hadn't been so heavy she would have flung it at the stupid beasts. She sneered at the avatar, daring the specter to glower at her for detesting this stupid battle between the gods.
A snowball to the small of her back sent her sprawling and the present tumbled out of her hands. As it landed on the ground Maeve saw her new mask and gloves flying out of her reach and into someone else's, someone who didn't need them, someone who liked throwing snowballs.
"Give it up Maeve and go find a tree to hide behind." Lucas suggested as he came by her feet, lunging for the present with an irritating grace nearly all Warriors had in dealing with feats of strength. Out of desperation Maeve grabbed a fistful of snow and went for the first thing of Lucas she saw, his boots. Lurching across the ground she grabbed the tops of his right boot and stuffed as much of the snow as possible.
"Gaahh! You little twit! Cold! Cold, cold!"
Maeve didn't stop to laugh as Lucas wheeled around; hopping from one foot to another but instead picked up the present and heaved it up the rest of the way. A Grench cackled at her, smirking at her in admiration as she shoved the present in its green hands. Mangled fangs poked out of the thing's lips even as the present vanished, gone to where ever Grenth kept them. She flashed the Grench one of her own smirks, feeling cold and wet but giddy at the thought of not only beating Lucas at his own game and at his own level but also out of imagining her new mask and gloves. I want gloves with yak fur lining and a mask that would make even Lyssa jealous. Oh why the hell not…I want gloves with runes and dyed black to make my hands slim. That'll teach Xiao to let Mesmers be when they're by a bonfire instead of dragging them for 'Wintersday Fun'. Such thoughts caused her smirk to widen to the point that she even threw a wink at the snickering Grench, if only to keep up her reputation as a wily Mesmer. Presentation was everything after all.
Twisting about, she ran hand through her hair to appear unruffled and in control as Lucas all but tried to jump out of his boots. She'd tease him later about having beaten him, now all she wanted to do was find a tree to hide behind. Afterwards she'd find a bonfire, eat some candied fruits, nuts, and warm herself in hot spiced tea until the damn holiday was over.
"Take this you stupid Mesmer!" she whipped her head around just as a flash of snow came into her vision, there was time enough for her to curse Grenth and Dwayna, and then there was only a flash of cold pain and darkness.
"I swear it was only a snowball."
"You and I both know you like putting metal ingots in your snowballs Amun."
"So? She's a Mesmer, she should have known better!"
There was a deep growl that sounded more like a Stone Fury then a human. "She's also unconscious because you felt like being an ass. How the hell did you become a Paragon anyway with those kind of stunts? Hitting someone in the face?"
Snowballs…is it Wintersday already? I need to get out of the city then. Xiao might want to…
"She's waking up."
"Maeve are you alright?"
I refuse to even think of an answer to dignify that.
"And hitting her in the back was honorable? Everyone sticks rocks in theirs and you throw whole snowmen at people Lucas!"
Lucas snorted, Maeve just wished everyone would kindly just shut up and leave her in her misery. "She'd already given the present."
Unfortunately, there was a Monk who couldn't seem to understand her need and kept gently shaking her shoulder. "Maeve? Come on Maeve open your eyes."
"Ugh." Maeve eloquently commented as she did so before scrunching them back tightly against the blinding light. She heard Lucas give a hearty laugh, a sound she was certain could scare children, as well as weaker men.
"Welcome to the land of the living Maeve." He said and she stuck her tongue out in his general direction, a purely childish gesture but one she felt was needed. She had been in a snowball fight for pity's sake so no one could say she was being childish.
"Well at least you're coherent again. And you can feel your face if you can do that." Xiao mused.
"Tell me Wintersday finished while I was knocked out." She begged as she opened her eyes again, forcing them to adjust to the bonfire. Even as she took in the sights of snow, snowmen, and running Grenchs she knew the answer though.
"You have to be the first Mesmer I've seen who doesn't like Wintersday." Xiao commented. "How did you like your first snowball fight?"
"Yes we're all curious about your thoughts of getting smacked in the face with a spiked snowball for the first time." Lucas added with a grin. Had she not felt like a Charr's chew toy she would have shoved a torch down his throat.
"I prefer the actions of being pummeled by a Stone Fury. And where is that Paragon who nailed me? I have several spells I'm sure he's never felt." She tried to move to get up but Xiao (and her protesting head) kept her from doing so.
"Revenge later. Amun ran the moment you groaned, I doubt you'll be able to catch up with him before he runs out of the city." Xiao said.
"Coward." She mumbled before bringing a hand and feeling her face, making sure everything was whole and in place despite the pain stating otherwise. "Please tell me there's some spiced tea somewhere." She looked hopefully at Xiao.
"What no eggnog? What's wrong with your sense of holiday spirit?" Lucas brightly asked before moving to the fire and pulling a long handled pot from the edges. Opening the lid he inspected whatever was inside before grunting in approval. "It's ready."
"It left the moment I realized I was being forced to use snowballs instead of spells." Maeve snapped before eyeing the pot. Inhaling she couldn't help the slight rumble in her stomach; beef stew. Blushing, she tried to ignore the grin Lucas shot her, evidently he had heard.
"I'm sure some of the merchants have some spiced tea Maeve. We could ask them after eating." Xiao suggested.
For a moment there was only silence amongst the group as Lucas carefully poured the stew into three bowls Xiao had handed him. The silence grew even as they began to eat and it wasn't until they were halfway done when Maeve looked up from her bowl and pinned Xiao down with a look.
"I'm not letting you get away. Be up and ready at dawn tomorrow with all of your money; we're going shopping." The Mesmer could only grin wickedly then as Xiao's face turned frighteningly pale at the prospect. Lucas gave another one of his great rumbling laughs and Maeve inwardly allowed herself to admit that even with a snowball in the face, this Wintersday might not be too awful.
A/N: Okay. While this isn't exactly what happened, I thought that at least this way would be a bit funnier. Only Maeve would get hit with a spiked snowball full in the face. The reality is that I didn't understand this stupid game (and yes, I thought it was stupid) and one click led to another before I was stuck in a snowball fight and as I was trying to stay out of the light, a present fell about a foot away from my head. I felt honor bound to pick it up (the truth was I wanted to see if I could keep it) and began running. Unfortunately I ran in the wrong direction and I passed the present onto the Dwayna side…literally handing it to them on a silver platter. Then this ellie comes up, bows at my donation before proceeding to hit me in the face with a snowball that knocks me out.
I proved to be a poor sport the rest of the time (all ten seconds of it) and hid out in a corner, mourning the loss of my real spells.