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Hayll has sought a suitable Queen to rule for years, but the one it has chosen has become the pawn of a manipulative Prince plotting genocide. While slaves fight for their lives in the Coliseum, Nero Augustus, Consul of Hayll, plunges the Territory towards war safely behind his puppet Queen.
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Author Topic: Serafina al Eirenemos  (Read 29 times)

Description: Opal to Red Black Widow Queen. Played by Vivian.

Offline Serafina al Eirenemos

  • Character Account
    • opal2red
    • bwq
    • Role

      Lady of the High Seas

    • Faction

      Sera's Privateers

    • Territory

      High Seas of Terreille

    • Character Sheet

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    • OOC

      Vivian

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Serafina al Eirenemos
« on: May 19, 17, 11:03:49 AM »
The Basics

Character Name:  Serafina al Eirenemos.
Nicknames:  Sera; Rene as a child. 
Age:  35 (157 AP).
Race:  ½ Longlived, ½ Shortlived (Hayllian & Raejian respectively). 
Caste:  Black Widow Queen.
Birth Territory:  Raej, Terreille.
Home Territory:  Home is where the heart is and her heart is where her ship is.

Birthright Jewel:  Cut Opal.
Offering Jewel:  Uncut Red.

Appearance

Play By:  Nina Dobrev.

Distinguishing Features:

Personality


Personality:

Serafina is the uncontested power of the seas in the Realm of Light. 

(And anyone who dares to say otherwise before her would probably be struck down within moments.)

A Black Widow Queen who wears the Red, there are few like her and even fewer of her caliber; her crew knows this best and on her ship, her word is absolute.  It is rare to see one of her caste on land and on the waters she is the one and only of her kind.  Confident, empowered, and adventurous, her façade is often given to careless joie de vivre – she is a potent and provocative witch, a virulent venom so darkly defiant in her embodiment of all that her castes entail and define. 

While she lives on a day to day basis in a life that is largely romanticized by the citizens of other Territories, sensual indulgence is a life philosophy she carries only so far as her whims dictate.  Free with her affections and even freer with a soft caress and sharp seduction, Serafina delights in the give and take of pleasure as many who bear the Snake‘s Tooth do.  Startlingly clean of a lover’s jealousy, she shares fairly well as a woman and even as a Queen, but expects and demands a loyalty from her people that few land trapped witches understand.  She cares not for their bodies, so long as their souls belong to her. 

Out at sea, when one spends months at a time with the same faces, the same hearts, the slightest unreliability could mean the deaths of the entire crew and so she keeps only the most worthy by her side.  They are closer than any Court and far more intimate than the stilted play of a Protocol-bound First Circle.  The Widow sees more in  people at first glance than otherwise possible.  The Queen makes judgments without batting an eye, so a first impression is often a lasting one.

It takes a certain set of qualities for one to withstand and weather the constant whirlwind that is this witch.  Driven by the mysterious and inexplicable tempers of a Queen, it is a constant dance to see if her caste as a Black Widow mitigates or exacerbates the circumstances.  Insight and caution of the futures and visions her every moment could beget has long been the only thing holding the dissonant conceptions of what it means to be a Queen together.  A childhood spent largely in isolation and a poor adolescent experience with formality and authority, Sera is typically uncompromising.  Her will is more often than not the law, as far as her crew is concerned.  What she wants, she wants.  What she hates, she hates.  There are very few occasions in which she begrudgingly temporizes her thoughts or opinions, which makes for lots of enemies very quickly.  And while she is in the possession of a moral compass with an exceedingly unyielding notion of right and wrong, the precise laws that govern its needle are far more fluid.  Like the sea she so loves, she is a tempest, a sanctuary, and a storm.

Playful and exciting at one moment and deadly in her silence the next, the transition from an inquisitive and nosy Black Widow who cannot tolerate not knowing something to disturbingly intense quiet is nonexistent.  While she demands to know secrets that others might hold, her pursuit of truth is entirely one sided, since the pirate Queen shares very little unless she so wishes.  In this, as she is in other things, she is selfish.  It is her right to know these secrets, her right as both a Queen and, more importantly, their captain. 

Flashing between the extremes of cruelty and icy violence, rarely does she ever explain herself or feel as if it is necessary to justify her actions - it is enough that she has acted and her people should accept that action.  And yet this is the same woman who pulls off daring raids on slavers and flesh peddlers, who ruins market day by vanishing with a gaggle of new lives meant for the auction block.  It is nearly enough to give one whiplash. 

Brash, Sera is larger than life - or at the very least larger than her small frame suggests.   She knows the world can be a dark place and she knows that trust is something that cannot be given freely.  The cost of her trust is often high, but also incredibly rewarding.  The Queen would go to extreme lengths for one of her own and the respect with which she treats those who are typically the downtrodden and disparaged is unexpected.  Serafina is a soul that roots for the underdog in most situations, a proclivity that spurs her to go out of her way to defy and rankle abusive authority figures, not the least of which are the scum of Hayll. 

What she fears is anyone’s guess, if she fears anything at all.  The mask Serafina wears is as averse to showing fear as a fish is of desert dunes.  The Red Queen of Terreille’s waters does not give way to fear; she has dared Chaillot’s Navy and laughed at their poor attempts at catching her.  Raej and Kemet never see her coming, but must watch her go, unscathed and untouched.  Her home is no place where she could be found, no anchored piece of dirt where she could be caught.  The waves is where she belongs and though she has never felt like most Queens, in the waters she finds a peace and sense of homecoming that is unrivaled.  Serafina would strike dead any who tried to take it from her. 

But here is a clue: what Serafina al Eirenemos fears is usually what she hates.


Likes:

  •   The Sea && Her Ship. 
    What is the sea, if not her home?  And what is her ship, if not the house in which she shelters for home and heart?  The sea means so much to Sera; it is the scene and scent she grew up with, the rocking hand that sent her to sleep as a babe.  It represents freedom and life, endless opportunity.  It is her escape and her past all rolled into one, shining and beloved.  It is a siren and she is a willing acolyte.  On land, she often feels stinted, like a part of her is missing, and walks with a swing of her hips that implies the song of the tides that she does not hear.

  • Swimming. 
    When she dives, when she floats dark in the depths of the oceans, the life that teems all around her is unmistakable, and what it means to be Queen, what it means to hear the call of life, is stunningly clear to her.  In the water, there is life abundant.  In the water, she knows what she was meant to be and feels abashedly connected to something.  Serafina does not know if this is what other Queens feel when they bind themselves to land, but she does know that without this connection, this bond, she could very well go mad.  It soothes and heals, the reassurance of life all around her, a shadow of primordial possibility and celebration.

  •   Early Mornings && Watching the Sunrise.
    She is usually one of the first of her crew up every morning.  Perhaps it is a habit formed from childhood, when she used to wake at the crack of down as her mother climbed out of bed.  These are special times for her, watching the first rays of the sun spill over the sky, an intimacy born of a time when most are still sleeping, unaware.  The Black Widow Queen does most of her Widow's Craft at dawn, the weaving of her webs beneath the first light of day.  It is right, she feels, that vision accompany the purest and first of light, for sight comes in darkness at the rising of the sun, but Sera does not always weave at dawn for her love of the early day is sometimes no more than the scintillating flecks of sunshine reflecting on the surface of water, the lull of a breathtaking gem formless and shifting before her.
Dislikes:

  •   Mindless Drones.
    While Sera demands loyalty, she deeply respects that others have minds of their own, especially since she is aware that she is not the most academically proficient of people.  Often open to hearing ideas and suggestions, particularly from fellow Black Widows whom she holds in high esteem, the Queen does not want unthinking sheep so much as cognizant and self aware compatriots and comrades.  She has to be able to trust them after all, and those who cannot think independently cannot really be trusted.

  •   Slavery.
    Her mother’s story is one she knows well and the nature of her pig of a biological father even better.  The Hayllian slaver is the reason for much of her antagonism towards Hayll and its Coliseum, as well as its corrupted taint.  Raised to despise and disdain slavery, the very concept itself is repugnant to her.  Serafina is no small thorn in the side of Terreille’s slave trade, making it a point to target ships and merchants known to place a price on the lives of other Blood and even periodic raids on slave pens.  She is hardly a bleeding heart of a crusader, but neither is she without compassion for those that are reasonably within her means to recover.   

  •   Uncleanliness.   
    You don't have to be squeaky clean, but she won't stand for stink and stench and illness on her precious ship.  If those on her ship want to keep a beard, they are welcome to it, but if it gets too long and unruly, one should not be surprised to wake up one morning with Sera looming over them, razor blade in hand.

Fears:

  •   Loss of Freedom.
    Serafina’s freedom means just about everything to her.  It means being able to keep her home, her life, her choices.  It means never fearing that the scornful eye of some distant figure could result in the deaths of those who are beloved to her.  Freedom is at the core of who Sera is and she is the first to reject all ties and bonds that she feels will bind her to people or places she does not want.  Even accepting the bond between a male and a Queen is difficult for her and is more likely to be something used and put away than something to be nourished and cared for.  At all times, she wants - needs - to have a choice.

  •   Ruling.
    Ruling would require her to leave behind all that she has striven for.  Ruling would require Serafina to surrender the ability to leave whenever she wanted, however she wanted.  It would nail to her a place with strangers and leave her bereft of the home she loves.  She would be stuck on land without the dance of the oceans to quell her, forced to face all her fears of her brokenness as a Queen and her ineptitude in fulfilling the usual destiny of such a caste.  But the pirate knows and wonders; how much longer will she be allowed to tempt fate?  How much longer before her visions and webs show her a need that cannot be denied and a miserable confrontation with all that she has been running from?

  •   Hayll.
    The birthplace of a father she thankfully never knew and hopes to never have the displeasure of meeting (unless it is to put a knife in his heart, that is), Hayll is a territory Serafina avoids.  She docks there only with the greatest of caution and never stays longer than a day or two.  The Widow takes pains to weave illusions and mask her scent, leaving little behind in the way of tracks.  Should Hayll discover a halfbreed Red Jeweled Queen in her, she knows not what they will do to her, but that its depravity is boundless is not a comfort. 

Craft Strengths:

  •   Queen's Bond.
    Funnily enough, for all that the Queen is wary of accepting or embracing the Queen’s Bond between male and Queen, she is extremely adept at manipulating it.  How else had she survived?  Her bonds with others are uncommonly strong and she often plays this to her advantage; the existence of this tie between a stranger and herself does not in any way engender trust, but it does give her pause.  They are useful to have and ultimately only those whom she deems worthy are allowed to stay beside her. 

  •   Power Bolts.
    A blast of power from the Red depths is strong enough on its own - honed with a Queen’s sense of vengeance and promise, Serafina is even more deftly skilled with them than many a warrior.  The seas were not given to her on a silver platter and her place on her ship was wrested from its previous owner.  She earns what she has and fights to keep it on a daily basis; not a Queen to sit idly by while others duel on her behalf.

Craft Weaknesses:

  •   Queen's Gift.
    Even when she wore the Opal and the Red was distant and yet to come, the giving of power to the land was difficult for her.  What should have been a flood of strength and life into the soil of Raej was no more than a trickle; now that the dual casted female holds a Red, it is even more apparent.  Years at sea with little attempts to breach the chasm between self and land has caused what was once a weakness to deteriorate even further.  Serafina’s gift is no more than Opal or Blood Opal at best.

  •   Interpreting Visions.
    The Widow's Craft is one she welcomes and holds dear.  While being a Queen as prescribed by her teachers has always somewhat baffled her as nonsensical, everything about being a Widow calls to who Serafina is and it is only as a Widow that she ever submitted to Protocol.  As a Widow, she could see the connections, the tenuous strands running from point to point, the ripples from a quirked finger reaching across a series of webs.  Interpreting visions though, that was a hardship for her from day one and it was her inability to make heads or tails of visions that kept her back so many years in spite of her relative mastery of other skills.  To this day, the puzzles of the future do not come easily to her.  Perhaps she simply does not wish to know what tomorrow holds.  Perhaps she fears it. 

Life Story

Family:

Mother:  Eirene al Zahar, 52 (135 AP), Tiger Eye to Summersky witch.
Father:  Hetmas amr Kamas, 57 (132 AP), White to Tiger Eye Warlord.
(biological) Father:  Romulus Domitius , 1,329 (1141 BP), Purple Dusk to Sapphire Warlord.

History:

It began with a wandering eye and too many extra marks clinking in Romulus' pouch.  Or, more precisely, it began with a whore and a Hayllian, and a fisherman who loved that whore.  Saayida was a stunning beauty who never seemed to lack for enchanted patrons, but Hetmas was a sincere and honest man whose love for her transcended her occupation and her looks.  And eventually, with the help of a Black Widow, Saayida and Hetmas had the story book happy ending; running off into the sunset together. 

What they did not know was that, in her belly, Saayida carried one last reminder of the Hayllian who had raped her.  When the newly christened Eirene told her lover of the child she carried, it was with a pain unimaginable. 

For the next year they spent nearly all their time on their little boat, secluded from the world.  Nine months of a child growing in her belly was nine months for Hetmas to love the babe, to grow accustomed to the idea of raising another man's seed. 

The squealing noises and kicking feet of a Queen changed everything.

"How is she?"  Eirene croaked from the mat, neck craning as he hurried forward to ease her into a sitting position.  "Is she well?"

"She is perfect."  And as he kissed little Rene's forehead, he knew it to be true.  It did not matter how terrified they were (Queens were not for commoners such as themselves to keep), nor did it matter that Rene bore no resemblance to him.  From the moment she had cried out and quieted in his rocking arms, she had been his.

The pair need not have worried about how a babe would take to life on a boat.  Rene loved it.  The constantly rocking motion, the dip and rise of the sea, was better than any cradle.  She cooed and rarely cried, except when she wanted or needed something (then she was loud enough to raise the dead).  Her eyes were bright and in the color and hue of her gaze, Eirene could not help the pangs of her lungs gasping for air - her babe had the eyes of Hayll, a golden haze that glittered and shone.  Imperious, inquisitive, and vaguely doe-eyed as she watched the world. 

Rene grew at a pace that seemed to blind her parents; somehow, she had went from immobile baby to walking in months, and from walking to running within weeks, and from running... well, Hetmas did not enjoy the heart attacks she gave him climbing wherever she could stick her small feet.  Their Queenling was impetuous and brave.  She would have been insufferable if not for the solemn, too-serious set of her face as she absorbed their answers, as if they were imparting the secrets of the Realms by telling her how sometimes Craft could make the sails move even if there were no winds. 

Eventually, Eirene told her daughter the truth of her parentage; the girl was too clever not to see the differences between her coloring and that of her parents. She made the tiny Queen promise to never tell a soul the name of her biological father.  He must never know, lest he wrest from the pride and joy from her life, lest he steal away by force once more all that was precious to the woman who had once gone by the name Saayida.  After that revelation, the sharing of such a secret between the two witches, the fiery and mischievous girl would slide into moods of such silence, of such complete quiet, that Hetmas and Eirene worried for her health. 

Hetmas was more worried than his lover.  Eirene knew, in part, that this slowing down for Rene was a good thing.  She wanted her daughter to think more and act less impulsively.  She needed her daughter to take her warnings to heart and so, every day after their noon time meal, when Rene sat beside her trying her best not to prick herself with a needle, Eirene poured stories, horrific stories, of Hayll and its taint in her child's ear.  The long lived of Hayll despised mutts like Rene and would not bat an eyelash at destroying her if need be.  Never would she want to see the day that Rene landed on the shores of the corrupted land.  These were cautionary tales the witchling took to heart.

When she turned seven, Hetmas took her aside and placed his hands on her small, slender shoulders, and told her that he had a very special gift for her, if the girl could behave for the next few weeks.  No dangling from ropes or getting into scrapes.  Keeping a low profile when they docked.  Promising not to give him an early death by spinning on the heels of her feet atop a teetering stack of wooden barrels.  Even then, Rene was cunning and relentless.  What would she get, in exchange for these promises?  For her promise was her word and her word was something she took gravely.  A good witch never broke her word, unless someone broke honor with her first. 

With a smile that lit up Hetmas' face - this was the smile Saayida of long ago had fallen for and this was the grin that shone down at him so often from his daughter's face as she endeavored to scamper along every remotely dangerous surface available to her - he brought her to the edge of the boat and pointed down at the sea.  "I am going to teach you how to dive."  The wonder that bloomed in Rene was brighter than any star and Hetmas was glad he had decided to show her the Craft behind it. 

Rene was treated to her first glimpse of a coral reef.  The colors and the shapes took her breath away.  She was stunned at the life that sung here, at the hum of the waters that pressed against her skin, spread out in an array of beauty she had never before imagined.  She felt like crying, like she was coming home.  And she did not know why, but surely this was what she was meant for, this beauty, this gasping beauty where the very essence of life tasted real and cool, where every dream she'd ever had of the Darkness seemed to spring alive and new into being.  Suddenly, it was as if the chants of the Priestesses, the stubborn block the existed between her and Mother Night, vanished, and all this joy and celebration, this chorus of greatness wrought by Her hand, was uncoiling from a dark and lonely place in her heart, filling her soul with a conviction stronger than any Jewel. 

Rene could not understand the heated looks that began to be exchanged by her parents, the way her father scowled and frowned or how her mother's face appeared to be perpetually stuck in a cross between fear and anger.  She did not know that she was well into, and possibly beyond, the proper age for her Birthright Ceremony.  If they waited any longer, it was no stretch of the imagination that their daughter might be adversely affected.  It worsened as the year went on, as spring reached the blazing heights of summer, until one morning Rene found her beloved and beautiful mother crying, eyes red and swollen and somehow wiggled the truth from her. 

And so nine year old Rene, daughter of Eirene al Zahar, was ushered into a riverside temple with a kind, spinster-like Priestess presiding, with only her mother to await her.  Hetmas spent the days at sea, working, but always, he would rush back in the evenings to spend it with family.  They wished to keep this as secret as they could and so the facade of normalcy by requirement remained.  In their hearts, they all knew Hetmas would be back in time.  He simply had to - there was no other time to claim paternity. 

The pair - what an incongruous pair they made, old and frail with a Green Descent and the young child strong and effervescent - emerged to the strained cry that erupted from Eirene's mouth.  The girl-Queen held in her hand a generously cut Jewel that caught the fading light in a sudden flash of pale blues.  Summersky?  Eirene's heart thudded, a howling drum, and yet she did not miss how her daughter's voice carried, surer and new and dear as if the girl had been gone for years rather than hours.  "Ummu," a smile splitting that solemn face, "I am Serafina."  Traditionally, Eirene would be next to speak, to stake the parental claims, but at Rene's - no, Serafina's - searching gaze, the shaking witch realized that Hetmas was not there. 

Hetmas, a Tiger Eye Warlord fighting for his life out at sea, their home bobbing like toy in a whirlwind storm.  Hetmas, who at the way two pairs of eyes (the same shape, the shape of pain and disappointment, for all their contradiction in color) widened, was not here.   

A sudden understanding lit Serafina's eyes and the fires there flashed like the angry power wriggling in the Jewel in her hands.  Eirene stared, speechless, and realized that the pale blues she had seen were not the familiar blues of her Summersky.  It was the Opal.  Serafina, get of a once Red Moon House worker, of a brutal Hayllian piece of trash, was a Queen who wore Birthright Opal.  In Raej, this alone guaranteed the future the Summersky witch had most desperately strained to avoid.  A bastard child by all definitions, but the Green Priestess would never let such a prize escape.  By the time Hetmas returned, haggard and worn away by his war against the sea, heartsick from missing Serafina's Birthright, a far worse scene had replaced the image in his mind.  In the small cabin they had rented was an overflowing amount of people, far more than the limited space could possibly hope to entertain. 

Representatives of Courts, districts and provinces alike, milled around, their plans for Serafina already spinning wheels in the gears of a larger machine. They wanted this Opal Queenling for themselves, for proper training they said, as was the way of Raej and her people, they said.  A subtle threat, those quiet words.

Eirene's fears were realized and they took her then, apprenticed her to a District Queen.  Serafina fought this tooth and nail, raging against these strangers who were tearing her world apart, trapping her in a cage that made her blood mourn for the sea, beg for the liberating, life quenching taste of salt water spicing the wind.  In anger, her eyes were dark flames, her every kick backed instinctively by her newly gained Opal, destroying bone and flesh and leaving savaged, cursing men in her wake.   

The fledging Queen within her reveled in the ebb and flow of the dance of power the Blood all played at, finally placed in an environment where her caste not only shone, but was pulled out of her at every turn by the people she met.  In spite of the joys she ferociously embraced, she loathed sitting around doing nothing, learning things from a mild, soft-handed and complacent older woman who didn't know the first thing about the real world.  (The real world, as far as Serafina was concerned, was out there, not cooped up in a room somewhere.) 

As the years dragged on, it became increasingly clear that she desperately missed life at sea and the freedom she had treasured on her father's boat.  Eirene resolved not to leave her daughter and after much discussion with the Tiger Eye Warlord, she decided she would stay with Sera, live nearby to the Court that Sera ultimately ended up in.  Defeated, Hetmas started to take out loans and incur debt to pay for a new house, unwillingly afraid of the mother daughter leaving him during the long stretches of separation that now existed between them.

Sera proved to be terrible at any of the spirituality of the priestess caste or even of the typical Raejian, fidgeting and growing distracted during temple every time they went.  She was good at silent prayer only when she was so inclined to and did not enjoy it as a discipline, but otherwise hated going to a sanctuary to be "cleansed," as if she were somehow dirty.  In fact, Sera often did stain her fingers plucking fruit or smudging her tunic and clothes in the rough and tumble life she was used to, but the girl never once forgot what her mother had told her. 

Without proper motivation, Sera had always been the sort of child that made learning a chore; her separation from her father only made her more difficult.  Looked to as a street urchin, country bumpkin, and behind closed doors as a bastard, life at Court was far from easy for her and she was not capable of keeping her mouth shut when it needed to be shut, nor was she able to say the words people often wanted to hear.  Rather, she demonstrated a predilection for simply saying whatever was on her mind, a habit acquired from her childhood and not one that the Queenling was at all inclined to grow out of.  Ever on the bad side of her authority figures and teachers, Sera's friends were unsurprisingly those among the servants, the casteless, all people considered to be socially below her in rank, but kin to her as outcasts.  Without friends among the district court, her experiences of adolescence only served to cement her dim outlook on what life as a ruling queen would mean.  A dead life without adventure or passion was one that she rebelled against in every way she knew how, flagrantly breaking rules whenever she thought she could get away with it.

As a teenager, she did not take well to submitting to another's will, even if it was another Queen's will.  With her parents, she had afforded them respect and yielded to them out of love and affection, but she felt no such things for the Queen who trained her.  For much of her life, her world was simplistically composed of only three people after all.  Sera's ability to selflessly put others before herself was thusly compromised; empathy was not so much a weakness as it was elite in its choice of whom the young Opal witch felt for.  The Queen she trained under certainly did not make the cut, especially since the woman kept slaves and Sera abhorred slavery.  Her mother had came perilously close to being sold to the Hayllian warlord long ago as a slave and she remembered well the disgust Eirene had filled her with. 

The grain of mischief that finally offset the tenuous balance between the two Queens, though harmless, was preceded with a long string of such moments.  Sera was not a simple child to rear or even a simple charge to watch over - she was constantly slipping out from under the eye of her guardians, blatantly using her Craft and her Birthright Jewel to twist through shields, take short rides through the Webs of her Opal to escape to the water side and driving her watchers insane.  Everything about the little Queen irked her mentor; the way her hair veils were always slightly askew, her hair tumbling out in loose curls, her golden eyes flirting with boys curiously as early as the age of thirteen and at fourteen she was recklessly smiling at the District Queen's Consort, testing her newly discovered sense of maidenhood.  The admonishment and reprimands doled out to the half-breed rarely affected any change upon her behavior and often served only to incense her further.  Perhaps the only punishment that had any perceivable impact on Sera was the threat to strip her of her weekly visits home, brief periods of one or two days that she spent with her mother.  If they thought her wild before, she would become exponentially more feral, less and less reasonable as they insisted on carrying through with their reprisal.  Ultimately, one overture too much became the crack in dam of recrimination and in spite of the girl's Birthright of Opal, she was instead further handed off to a village Priestess, in hopes that a Priestess could help Sera attain some semblance of compliance. 

Unfortunately for the poor Priestess involved, concurrent with this transfer of responsibility, Serafina exhibited far more irritating signs - namely, the actualization of a Widow's Tooth.  For a while, the Priestess attempted to school the girl in meditation and prayer, but she soon realized the futility of her attempts.  Daughter of an ex-prostitute, rowdy and aggressive, she was nothing like the sort of spiritual rulers Raej wanted and often clashed with the Priestess that lectured her unceasingly.  The Priestess was just as relieved as the Queen before her to pass on the troublesome teenager onto the hands of another at the ominous manifestation of her dual caste.  In this case, the Coven took on the monumental task of rearing and raising the explosive handful a dual casted Queen presented.  The Black Widow Queen was uncommonly intense for either of her castes, made worse by the depths of the Abyss she already stood in, and exacerbated by the imposed distance from her family.  Unaccustomed to not getting her way, Sera fought the Coven as cattily as she had once opposed the District Queen who mentored her.  And yet, she respected these Sisters, her regard for them stemming from the stories her mother used to tell of a Black Widow named Hesra who had helped the Red Moon House worker escape from her worst fears.  It was a truth she remembered, unconsciously, that Widows had been trusted at her mother's time of greatest need, and so she gave them more room to maneuver, more space to corral her. 

Her mother she saw often, but Hetmas had become increasingly absent from her life, struggling with loans and debt payments, unsettled by the potent woman his daughter was growing into.  Years with fellow Black Widows and strict, unforgiving teachers that would never tolerate the behavior she typically showed outside of the Coven, tamed her somewhat and imparted a fraction of social graces to her.  Serafina came to understand the consequences of actions through the careful navigation of her webs, the reality of class and poverty.  She had taken to her second caste like a fish to water and, miraculously to outsiders, even allowed herself to be submitted to the teachings of someone else for the first time.  She was greedy and hungry for knowledge, but discarded the warnings the Coven gave her of how she chose to cope with the unbearable psychological itch of being a Queen.  She did not consider herself "spiritual" by any stretch of the word. 

The Coven tried to keep her as long as possible to teach her as much as they could about other aspects of both her castes, but Sera demonstrated proficiency clearly enough for independence.  The acquisition of formal training, although not in her caste as a Queen, finally managed to leash the wild cat to a moderate level - which was a credit to the Widows who trained her. 

To the dismay of the Courts interested in her, the Black Widow Queen was a great disappointment.  For although Sera wore Opal, her contributions amounted to no more than perhaps the Gift of Rose or Summersky.  Perhaps, as a natural Black Widow, she was subconsciously inhibiting herself, placing mental and psychic blocks on the Craft that existed in a channel of power and intimacy between the Land and a Queen.  Her secret fear was that she was a broken Queenling somehow (that she was a defected Blood female, tainted and defective) because she could not seem to bridge the spiritual chasm everyone else did with ease.  Her discomfort drove her more surely into her identity as a Widow and more surely into the confidence and security that she had deeply lacked from life as just a Queen (a useless one at that).

At seventeen, Serafina was a deadly beauty.  The combination of her castes and her strength made her a challenge irresistible and an adventure daring.  It was not difficult to see that she had benefited greatly from her mother's looks and a Hayllian father's coloring, the slight delicacy and grace of a long lived race refining her small face into a work of art.  Her flirtations grew more lively and common with the growing interest of the men around her, and yet that was not drew the most dangerous eye. 

By eighteen, she had undergone a successful Virgin Night (a very, very successful night in her opinion and among the eligible escorts, it had been hotly contested on who would receive the honor), so the advent of her Offering Ceremony was closely watched, especially by a certain ambitious Purple Dusk Priestess with dreams of power and destiny.  But none more closely than by the budding lady in question.  Since her Birthright Ceremony, Serafina al Eirenemos had never, not once, experienced the encompassing and exhilarating symphony of Mother Night's touch.  She longed for it, the direct kiss of Darkness beneath her skin and in her blood, the shadowy world filled lightning chasing phantom veins upon her ivory bones.  Even if she never experienced that connection again, as only a Queen could, that she would find the cavern of midnight and stars at least once more.  Just as she had during her Birthright, her Offering would be her most cherished communion with the Darkness.

For the days leading up to the descent of the dual caste Queen, Serafina obediently bowed her head to Priestess at temple.  She sat in prayer rooms and breathed incense, stiller than a statue of sand stone or an image drawn on the sand.  She purged every unnecessary word and motion from her, baffled her mentors and teachers, grimly made her mother proud.  What else could Eirene be?  After all, the Summersky witch had come a long way, from the rooms of a Red Moon House in Kemet to bearing a clever, self aware, and strident daughter.  It did not matter to her that Serafina wore Opal, bore the black tint of a Widow's Tooth, or held the precarious blessing of a Queen's caste.  In the end, she was proud of a young woman raised with a heart worthy of any prayer of praise, but careful enough to guard it from the avaricious bellies of monsters.  No one would ever force her child into anything the girl did not want (it was how she had raised Sera, anyways, and too well was this lesson learned by the impressionable child). 

The Offering Ceremony was sacred among all the people of Raej; the Offering of Serafina al Eirenemos even more so.  She approached it in a rare solemnity, serious and severe, revealing to her audience that the impish, teasing brat they remembered lived on only as a skin when she wished to don it, masking the genuine woman within.  This meant far more to her than it meant to those gathered, except, perhaps, one woman miles removed: Ramla Khaldun.  Ramla's son was close, too close, to bringing her dreams into fruition.  Odji was already High Priest, but more could be done and certainly much of it would not see the light of the Realms if a mouthy, spontaneous Black Widow Queen wearing dark jewels stood in his way.  The Purple Dusk Priestess subtly arranged for a notorious pirate gang to settle the issue, although the kidnapping was done on land with her backing and her power.  Sera caught a look at the woman, but it was fleeting and the night dark, the hands many and the faces strange.  Caught unawares, it took several blows to her head and a vicious concoction of sedatives and poison to knock the Opal lady unconscious.

Aboard that ship - it would become something of a favorite tall tall - the legend of Serafina was born, for somehow, someway, she made her descent to Red and exacted her vengeance.  Salt water graves for them all. 

The only ones to survive her bloody coup were, unsurprisingly, the rare few that Serafina was stunned to find belonged to her, who had secretly aided her, and a small clutch of slaves that had been destined for Kemet.  Serafina was not such a Queen to deal with things of the past that would only impede her current survival.  The slaves she freed and gave the option of being returned to their homes, as long as it was an acceptable journey.  She wasn't about to sail across the Realm just so a stranger could go home, but she would see them to a safe port if she could.

And she too, she thought at the time, could return home.  Only news of her tragic disappearance and subsequent death, news orchestrated by Ramla, had spread throughout the land.  This news was accompanied with a tidbit that broke Sera's heart.  Grief had driven the mother of Raej's rising star to insanity and finally wasted the woman away to her death.  Eirene had died and Hetmas, in mourning so deep, the father who had never been acknowledged as such by the eyes of the law, had followed not long thereafter.  Stricken and lost, there was nothing left in Raej for Sera to return to.

Burdened with this life rending sorrow, Serafina took to the seas with reckless relish, fearlessly and exclusively gathering a small, but tight crew of her own.  She had strident demands of her people and never accepted less than what she expected from them; she spent the first few years making a name for them, merrily interrupting trade routes to and from Raej, sneakily sabotaging ships bound for Kemet and alleviating them of their riches.  When she came upon slaves, she often opted to free them, and once or twice she had even tripped over a few that wished to stay with her.

Aged by her trauma and hardened by memories that broke a more tender girl, Serafina rules the waters now.  No ship or vessel has been known to keep apace with her and for all her forays with multiple Navies (Raej and Chaillot alike), the Queen remains untouched.  She has become something of a legend, if legends could be infamous, and so little is known of the persona Sera has crafted for herself.


Show Us What You've Got

Writing Sample:

Nothing had ever felt like this.

Nothing; not the time she had lost track of her Craft and salt water had flooded her lungs.  Not the first time her body had wakened with hungers for a toxin that no other caste could fathom.  Her flesh crawled with hazy pain, clinging hands of poison sweetly looping through her veins.  It had not been so muddied, the window of consciousness Serafina had clawed her way towards last. 

But then again, she had lunged for that laughing face made ugly through the veils of her hatred and he had bled so pretty.  It was a shame that there had not been more blood, that her Snake Tooth had missed the vulnerable glance of his cheekbone.  The man had slapped her, hard, and poured something so foul down her throat she was surprised it had not burned through something as delicate as her vocal chords.  She’d choked on it, on the stench of his psychic scent, but then there were no more scents.  The shadows swelled from the corners of the room, the Green locked cabin hissing in snapping snakes at her, around her wrists.  No, no, not so quickly, the Black Widow raged, surged against the crooning oblivion, screeching for something, for the bite of rope into her skin, the throb of bruises blooming purple and invisible on her shoulders and face. 

Sera wore the Opal.  She bore the two most dangerous and feared of castes.  Death would come before submission, but to do it with her teeth sunk deep into the jugular of that disgusting Warlord would be the greatest gift from Mother Night. 

He is back again, the snakes were happily hissing, coiling in a sibilant dance, their eyes glowing at her from the holes of her vision.  We will be your friends, your last friends little Rene.  We are the only ones left who care that you are here.  Who know.

Fuck off.

Actually, she had not been sure her voice still existed, but it scrapped against her ear, loud and tinny as it bounced off the bastard’s aural shields.  Laughter rustled her lungs in a heave of dry reeds whistling in the wind and even that faint movement pressed the coarse flax against the raw wound at her throat.  Fierce joy rushed through her, chased away the emerald serpents (she was a sister of the Wicked Tooth and she feared no snake, never had, not once, but they were sisters and these sisters tormented her so).  There was pain, fresh and new, and it could keep the maze of mist and stubborn silt from trapping her mind again.  Long enough for her to see the man’s face in the dim light streaming behind him, to catch the mean spark in his petty gaze. 

“A present for such a well behaved bitch,” he snarled and yanked her forward. 

Sera tsked gently, condescendingly, at him and tasted the crusted blood on her lip.  “Now, now.  So eager for seconds?  I guess another set of scars will give that repulsive face of yours some character.”  Her nails had raked from ear to chin, though it would have been far more satisfying if had managed to start from his eye.  He had learned that metal was a poor choice for restraints, for the Queen had been all too eager to break her own wrist to weasel out of them. 

She wondered why she was still alive.

But he grinned and any wonder in her fled.  The pig was a sadist.  A monster, really.  She did not know what traumatic abuse had twisted him in his past or if he had just been born with taint pumping sludge in his heart and she did not care. 

Waggling a finger in exaggerated good humor, he towered above her and traced the hand that had left glaring red streaks upon his face.  “Such a small hand.”  The grin that spread his mouth was wide and dark - a jackal doling punishment.  Dog.  Flea bitten bag of rotting shit.  Alarm stiffened through papyrus thin walls of her body when his fingers held her overlapped hands steady, spreading them wide and the girl who was only eighteen whimpered, fear shooting up her spine.  That gentle touch was worse than all his violence, the sleepy glaze of his eyes screaming at her in warning. 

In his large, bulky hands he had a nail.  A long nail, an iron nail - meant for keeping wooden planks affixed to rowboats. 

His canines flashed and he smashed the point of it through muscle and bone, driving the tip through a palm as she convulsed, dangling from the cabin’s ceiling.  Such pain, such terrible, engulfing pain, white hot and greedy, laying waste to every thunderstruck nerve.  Was this what it felt like, to die by a Snake Tooth’s kiss? 

The snakes were hissing again.

Slowly, agonizingly, he drew it out.  That eager smile grew and grew as the ragged edges of her torn flesh stuck to iron, dragged against its metal surface.  Sera did not realize that it had been her screaming until he crushed her jaw together with Craft.  Her voice contorted into a crowing wail of such malevolent reprisal that nothing less would serve to satiate her - had she scared him?  What a pity, the grapevine murmured as it climbed up her limp legs, sinking roots into her carcass.  Such a feast.

He flicked a bit of Craft at her, demanding her attention, but the Queen was haughty and the Widow glazed with ice.  Less than the smallest grain of clay at the bottom of the Vaal, this one.  The Warlord deserved absolutely nothing less than her contempt and not a single bit more.  Still, she was ashamed that tears had left tracks of clean skin in their wake, that she had cried for this man.  The vines were drinking her blood now, growing heavy with dark bulging spheres of fruit.  Sweet, so sweet was the flesh just under the skin, and the acidity that was razor sharp beneath it. 

A second jerk of his hand and he slammed the entire length of the nail through both her hands, her eyes dilating and for a moment her back arched so sharply it was a miracle all her vertebrae stayed in one place. 

“Pretty bones,” she sang, voice on the coldest of winds, and then darkness took her.


Petitions (if any): 
Tacea Territory Petition.
Reactivation petitions.

Why did this character became inactive?
Illness in the family.  Personal emotional state bleak.  So basically, health reasons?

What will you do to prevent this character from becoming inactive again?
Plot with Dani!  And Phe!  And Dash.   Vive la révolution!

What are your plans for this character?
Join the rebels.  Make trouble.  Sera likes to kill things, so there will probably be dead peoples everywhere.  Maybe, JUST MAYBE, someone can convince her to settle down and accept ruling somewhere. 

Number of previous Reactivations:
On Sera?  0, I think.

Changes Made to Application for Reactivation Process (if any) :
She's in Hayll.  With Judas.  Sleuthing.


Player Name:  Vivian.

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Re: Serafina al Eirenemos
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 17, 11:43:46 AM »
gmail: tiboctavian@bloodrites.net    aim: rakalsigurd 

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