Just about anyone else would have been fine however the fact that the obnoxious Liam was now going to be traveling with them was perhaps the worst news the mage could have faced. Creus did not particularly care for the whole save the world thing however he had been looking forward to leaving for the exact reason of getting away from that chatterbox. After spending the majority of his life alone he was used to the peaceful bliss of silence. When traveling even Blitz was pretty quiet, though the wolf did get exited and vocal on occasion it was tolerable, even cute. It also didn't go on for hours on end and didn't stop. Was he going to be able to survive this trip or was his head going to explode?
The only placating thought was the possibility that Liam will hopefully settle down during the trip and quiet down. Hopefully. Creus didn't mind simple conversations but the kid going on and on about honor and knighthood was one hundred percent obnoxious. The look of dismay on his face was quite obvious when he heard this bit of news but Liam merely giggled like a happy child when he saw. For the mage this was rather disquieting.
As for the other new guy Creus really wasn't sure what to make of him, he sounded like a noble but something about him seemed a bit odd. There was something strangely alluring about his presence, it gave the naturally weary mage mixed feelings. He decided immediately to be careful around this guy, at least until he figured him out.
"Welcome to the group I guess..." Creus said trailing off as Blitz went over to greet the newest member of their group. The wolf paid little attention to Liam, perhaps do to meeting him before. Instead he snuffled all around Fernleigh, wagging his tail as he did so and shoving his nose against random places. Oddly the wolf seemed just a tad confused as well but unconcerned. "Thats Blitz, he won't harm you unless you try to harm him or myself. I'm Creus..."
Anything else that the mage thief might have said was quickly cut off when Liam suddenly let out a delighted squeal and shouted "Stormdancer!" It was so loud Creus couldn't help but flinch as Liam darted past him and greeted a small light dapple grey mare being led out by a stable boy. The mare greeted him with a gentle snort. Following the mare where several other horses all of which looked surprisingly good despite the poor treatment the people at the castle had offered them. Perhaps they did not care for the people that where dragged through the portal but this made it rather clear that they cared about their mission.
One by one the stable boys distributed the horses to each person, placing the reins of an elegant and strongly built grulla gelding in Zakhars hands, the horse appeared to be of the Andalusian breed or whatever its likeness was in this world. The next horse was slightly heavier boned a glossy pitch black in color with fluff on his fetlocks and gentle eyes, he appeared similar to the friesian horse breed in his world however while larger in frame than Zakhars horse he wasn't quite as bulky as the purebred friesian which probably served to make the horse better suited for long distant travel.
Another horse was led out and the shy stable boy led it near Kuro and then stopped. "H-his majesty wasn't sure if you needed a horse or not t-two, you c-can have t-this one if you want o-or I can take it back." The boy stuttered nervously as another led a black horse with three white stockings and a slightly shorter white sock on his left front and white blaze and snip down his face. The horse was built like a warmblood, though a bit lighter boned over all. It was perhaps a warmblood crossed with a lighter racing breed. All the horses where rather striking in appearance and had excellent conformation.
The last of the horses had caught Creus's eye with its striking black and white coloration and when its reins where handed over to him the mage gladly took them. The stable boys all seemed rather nervous, perhaps shy and they took off as soon as they where able too, leaving them alone with their horses.
Creus took a few minutes to get to know his horse, the gelding seem very gentle and pliant. This horse personality wise was the exact opposite of what he was used too. Shiro, his horse back in his own world was extremely aggressive to the point of being dangerous to just about anyone other than him. Even then Creus had been both bitten and kicked by the horse on multiple occasions. The only reason why he kept the horse around was that he couldn't bear the thought of what would happen to the horse if he ended up in someone else's hands.
Chances where Shiro's aggressive behavior would only serve to get him sent to a slaughter house. The stallion was a desert horse, caught in the wild and transported north by men who did not know how to handle a wild animal and given to a lord who was just as bad. Creus has witnessed the man attempting to beat Shiro into submission in town and later when he saw them camped out on a trail he had stolen the horse out of pity. He wanted to get the animal away from its abusive owner and failed to realize just how bad people has screwed that horse up.
Over the years he had been able to earn the horses trust and loyalty and having a good, nimble endurance horse made hunters fairly easy. That alone made it worth putting up with the horses nasty demeanor. Now as he stood in front of this gorgeous new horse, he couldn't help but make comparisons and wonder if Shiro was okay. The stallion was hardy and did fine being on his own for days at a time but would he be okay for such a long period of time? Would he be able to find him when he got back or would Shiro revert back to his wild state after being alone for a long time. How long would this journey take?
His thoughts where interrupted by Liam as the kind mounted his horse. "Are you all just going to stand there gawking or are we going to get this sweet new adventure started?" The chirped cheerfully causing a irritated sigh to escape the mage as he tied his back to his horses saddle and mounted as well. The gelding stood perfectly still and waited patiently for his command, something Creus was going to have to get used to. Shiro would have been dancing and raring to go.
"Yes, lets go." Creus stated simply feeling more reluctant than ever as glanced at his comrades. Obviously the people from this world could ride horses and he came from a world that had horses as well, Kuro had his dragon form so he probably didn't need to worry but what about Zakhar. Did he know how to ride? He didn't voice this thought as he nudged the black and white gelding into a walk. Even if he didn't horses where heard animals in nature, his horse would surely follow the rest. His horse compliantly stepped through the castles gates, though the gelding did sidestep nervously when Blitz got close. The horse was clearly weary of the wolf unlike Shiro but he didn't put up too much of a fuss. Likely within a few days the horse would be fine with the wolf around.
Once they where outside the gate, before anyone took off Liam stopped them all urging his mare out in front and blocking their path. "Hey, before we go I just wanted to be clear on one thing. This is not something welcomed in the castle, they don't really like this sort of thing so I kept quiet about it. I'm gay and you lot are incredibly handsome. I cannot believe I got so lucky as to get to travel with so a many hot men. So I would like to apologize in advance for any flirting I might do, kay? If you all are against that speak up now and I will try to refrain from doing so though I won't make any guarantees."
The usually obnoxiously cheerful Liam suddenly seemed quite serious as he spoke, as if he put a halt to their journey before it even got started for a very serious matter. His words fell well short of a truly serious matter. Creus was a loner and that kind of thing was not something he was familiar with other than the occasional advance of a passer by which he usually ignored. Traveling with someone as obnoxious as Liam whom openly admitted to trying to hit on them was indeed worrisome. So when the kid made the offer to try and hold back if they where uncomfortable with it he immediately spoke up. "Please leave me alone." The mage said automatically, his tone deadpan.
"Well of course you would say that now wouldn't you? I know I annoy you." Liam responded completely unruffled by the mages behavior. "Does that mean you don't like other guys or you just don't like me? Cause I know you don't like me."
"Lets get going." Creus said dryly choosing not to dignify Liam with an answer as he attempted to guide his horse around the kid.
"Oh, won't answer huh? I guess this mean you do like guys right, am I right?" Liam pressed, glancing slyly at the others. "What, we might as well ,make things clear now? We are going to be spending a lot of time getting to know eachother."
"Shut up, this is not some romantic expedition, we are here for a purpose. That purpose is to save this country so we can go home." Creus's irritation leaked heavily from his voice but he didn't deny Liam's questions, instead he simply tried to redirect them by reminding him what they where here for.
"Ah-hah, you won't deny it will you because you do in fact like other guys too right?! Don't worry, I promise I'll leave you alone but I'm not going to stop pestering you until I get an answer from you!"
"Why does it matter to you?" Creus asked glaring daggers at Liam. How could this kid be so annoying? Would it be a bad thing if he made sure the kid took a nice long nap under a tree somewhere in the forest while they continued on without him? That thought was seriously tempting.
"I promise I won't bother you if you answer, what if one of the other guys hear wants to know?" The promise of being left alone was certainly tempting but Creus failed to see what this had to do with anyone else. They would after all go back to their home world in the end, it wasn't likely that they would encounter each other ever again which currently was alright with him.
"What does it matter? We are all going back to our separate worlds in the end." The mage retorted, again not quite relenting to Liams questioning though he absolutely did want it to end. This whole thing was very irritating and quite tiresome as well, the truth was he never even thought about things like that before. It was hard enough just trying to survive in his world, romance not something he had even considered.
"Why does it matter? Well good bonds can absolutely transcend worlds and well we actually have the ability to do it here so even after words we can come visit you guys and even let you guys visit each other. They said your a magic user right? I bet if I ask the king nicely enough he will give you the information required make portals!" Liam gleefully didn't give an inch to Creus's excuses and attempts to put off the conversation.
"Fine, I don't know okay? I live in a world where magic users are tortured and burned alive at a stake. My kind has been hunted to near extinction, I have not seen another mage in ten years and the last one I met was killed days later. In order to survive I and if there are any like me still alive avoid normal humans as much as possible. Its hard enough just trying to survive I have never had the time or a chance to consider such things. Are you happy now?" The mage finally snapped and rode past Liam, his words finally silencing the kid.
"Wow, well I suppose that explains this but still if your worlds like that than why not take the time to find that out for yourself while your here? I know I'm out of the question by why not give someone else a chance? Besides me what do you think of the others? Do they look good, attractive even? Do ya like looking at a good looking guy? If so the answer is right there!" Liam called after Creus grinning triumphantly as he swore he saw the mages face flush slightly in response. Liam than sheepishly glanced at the others. "I guess I probably went a little too far with that one. At least I got an answer of sorts though, did y'all see his face flush when I asked him that. It was awfully cute but clearly I got no shot at him, I'm pretty sure he'd drop me off a cliff somewhere if he could. Anyway, lets all get along well okay? Oh and did I tell you all about the honorable knights code?"
(Note; A blaze and snip, stockings and socks are all names of markings on a horse. Stockings are a marking that go from the top of a horses hoof up to its knees or close to the knees, a sock is a marking that goes up just past the horses ankle. A blaze is a white stripe down the horse face and a snip is a white marking on a horses nose. Fetlock is a term for ankles)