(Arien meets Kal. Enjoy!)
Arien's father had finally been talked into letting her go to Stormwind to be trained as a paladin. She was happy for the opportunity, and she enjoyed her training, but going into the second year at the Cathedral, she began realizing that she was lonely. The rare short visits to her family helped, but as her training progressed, her relationship with her father began feeling strained, as he continued to criticize her teachers and mentors. Her mother remained supportive, but Arien still didn't really have any friends close enough to talk to.
One day, during a break in her studies, she heard someone crying as she was walking across the courtyard. It was fairly common for people to come to the Cathedral to seek comfort or grieve, but the absolute heartbreak in these sobs made Arien pause. Unable to help herself, she sought the source of the sobs, only to stop in surprise when she discovered it was a Night Elf. The female Kaldorei was sitting, hunched over, on one of the benches under a shade tree. Arien stared for a second, then approached. When she reached her, the elf looked up with pain-filled eyes. "She's dead, I know she is. Oh Elune, why?" Arien felt a stab of pity for the elf, and quickly sat down, offering a shoulder she was quick to accept. Her sobs started again, and Arien simply held her, murmuring softly in her ear.
Finally the elf seemed to regain control. She sat up, as Arien kept one hand on her shoulder. The paladin dug a hanky from a pocket and handed it to her. After wiping her eyes and blowing her nose, the elf looked at Arien with piercing, pale blue eyes. "Thank you," she said. "I'm Kal." "I'm Arien. I'm studying here to be a paladin." Arien replied. She gave Kal's shoulder a comforting squeeze. "You want to talk about what happened?" she asked gently. The elf's eyes began watering again, as she looked away, and began speaking quietly.
"My sister is,... was, a Sentinel. Her squad was sent to Northrend almost a year ago, and what was left of them just got back a few days ago. Riatha wasn't with them." Another tear slowly ran down her cheek, only to be wiped away. Kal blinked at Arien in surprise, seeing the sympathetic expression on her face. This was something the proud elf would have normally spurned, but it seemed so honest and genuine, coming from this paladin. It touched the solitary warrior, seeing a human acting so selflessly.
The Cathedral's bells began ringing at that second, startling both of them. Arien glanced towards the doors, then back at Kal with an apologetic expression. "I'm afraid that means I have to go back, but we could meet later, if you want?" Kal nodded, reaching up to touch the hand still on her shoulder, simply saying, "I'd like that." Arien smiled. "Do you know where the Pig and Whistle Tavern is?" Kal nodded, and they arranged to meet for supper. Arien stood and went back inside, pausing to wave at the door. Kal waved back, then leaned back against the tree, closing her sore eyes wearily.