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Established February 2010
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Recent Posts

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1
Archived Wanted Ads / Re: Wanted in Dharo: Court & Territory Politics
« Last post by Rated Em on Today at 05:25:19 AM »
*grabby hands at brent poole*

this will be miiiiiiiiiiiiiine.
2
Keep's Registry / Re: Nasir Vasile
« Last post by Phedre on Today at 01:23:50 AM »
Looks great for Dharo and references to Rhiannon'a family and the spies!
3
Pruul / Re: Not the Queen you had in mind
« Last post by Elenor Lirion on Sep 24, 17, 11:58:07 PM »
”What do we do now?”

The words were like a bucket of ice water, and what little composure Elenor had managed to string together in the presence of the other two witches vanished. Her shoulders slumped and she took a step backward, if only to combat the instincts that were screaming at her to move forward instead, into the protective arms of a man she did not know, and yet trusted to the core of her being all the same.

”I don’t know. I...I had been looking for you to ask,” her mind went blank. What had she wanted to ask again? The notion that she had expected to walk into the Sabbah Tribe and just offer herself up as their Queen now seemed too foolish. She didn’t know his people, how could she possibly be the best to lead and protect them? How could she have been so careless with their lives, lives this man must care about deeply. Yet, the Hague knew and backtracking now...impossible. ” I had come to offer my services to you and to the Sabbah.”

Elenor shifted uncomfortably as she waited for a reply, and when she realized that her answer while stating her intent had not even touched upon the topic he had probably asked about to begin with, she added, ”I’ve only ever had this happen once before. I don’t, umm, know the rules.”

Then, on impulse, because her fingers had been itching to do it since he had first walked in and because they were alone and because not doing so was starting to cause her physical pain, Elenor stepped forward, reached up, and touched his face. It was just the most feather-light of caresses and it left a smudge of flour behind, but the warmth of his skin under hers made the roaring inside her settle.
4
Rihland / Re: different persons
« Last post by Mia Kollen on Sep 24, 17, 11:56:28 PM »
Mia sat quietly in her office, papers stacked neatly to the side and a cup of coffee steaming in front of her.  She didn’t notice though, she was staring down into the dark liquid with her mind a million miles away.

She mourned the loss of her Steward, a man who had been almost a second father to her since before Prince Kalvar had liberated Rihland and given her Belaya to rule.  He had been her Steward before she had a court; working on her behalf even while she had been bound and chained to the Eyriens who ruled the land before.  They had only met in passing a few times, and had been careful to conceal their correspondence for years while too many careful eyes were watching.   He had been the first person she contacted as soon as Prince Kalvar had made his intentions known and within the next day, he had gathered males loyal to her to pledge their interest in forming her First Circle.    He had been her confidant, her secretary, and her friend.  His death had been a painful surprise because it had been so sudden and yet so silent.  She had experienced death before but through the violence of their oppressors.  The inevitability of being executed was far more common than a natural death. 

So when the maid had come running to her that morning, pale and crying about how the Steward hadn’t come down for breakfast and when she went in the room he was laying in his bed as if still asleep, the shock had been even more jarring for Mia.   She made sure he was given a fitting funeral, one that recognized all his hard work to both Queen and Province.

Now came the difficult part, finding his replacement.  The papers on her desk were resumes and letters of recommendation from across Belaya; some belonging to men in her own Circle seeking consideration to be elevated into the Triangle.  They all had good qualifications but she still hadn’t made a decision.  She had a meeting scheduled for this morning with one of the applicants, a man who hadn’t been present for the formation of her First Circle but came with strong references.  He was younger than the other men, but the Steward didn’t have to be an aged man to be good at the position.

There was a knock at the door and her butler waited a few moments before opening the door and stepping in.  “Lady, a Prince Ibsen here to see you.”  Mia looked up from her drink, nodding her head as she rose up out of her seat.  “Let him in, thank you.”  The man stepped aside and held the door as another man stepped in.  Well dressed, with a strange sort of curly red hair that she hadn’t seen on many men.  She took in the wardrobe and the glasses the practically announced this was a scholarly and learned man and wondered for a moment if the look wasn’t too perfect, too contrived. 

“Prince Ibsen,” she said, stepping from around her desk, extending her hands in a greeting, “Thank you for coming so punctually.  Can I offer you a cup of coffee before we begin?
5
Pruul / Re: Not the Queen you had in mind
« Last post by Tavar al-Sabbah on Sep 24, 17, 11:39:07 PM »
Fin did not move when Elenor reached out to touch him, though Shadya tensed. The Black Widow was ready to lay this woman low, Queen or not, if she’d done something to her uncle. Only Amira’s warning halted the Black Widow’s attack. Minutes had passed and yet Fin had not moved. The two women communicated by thread while they tried to determine if this was some kind of trap laid by the Hague.

Fin watched Elenor, even when she regarded both women with suspicion. The Eyrien recognized then that this nieces still remained in the tent.

It’s a pleasure to meet you, Warlord.

Fin wasn’t given to needing the approval of others, not for a long, long time. But Elenor’s honest greeting made him feel better.

Shadya. Amira. Wait outside, please. I will be fine.” Fin said.

Uncle Fin, you shouldn’t--

Shadya, go!” Fin snapped at the young woman. Both women hurried out of the tent quickly. Fin didn’t bother watching them go, though. His eyes were still locked on Elenor. He hoped that no one was stupid enough interrupt this moment between him and this young Queen. His Queen. His Queen.

Lady Lirion, do you need any help? I came to speak to you about a few things, but now…” Fin’s voice trailed off and he looked distinctly uncomfortable in that moment. He didn’t want to say that the Sabbah’s problems were trivial, for they were not. He didn’t want to waste his time or hers. He did, however, want to inhale her scent and memorize it. He wanted to know it. He wanted to heal his clan. And now the very woman he wanted to aid him was his Queen, given to him by the Darkness.

Her gold eyes hinted at long-lived ancestry, but it was not pure.

Fin’s heart sank a little at that realization. He would not be able to spend the next four thousand years with her. He would be fortunate if they got a thousand years together. One thousand years and she would be gone long, long before he truly knew her. The knowledge sobered him. She was milestone in his life, but not a constant.

What should we do?” Fin asked. The world had shifted beneath his feet and now he had trouble finding his balance.
6
Graphics Claim / Re: Graphics Claims
« Last post by Myst on Sep 24, 17, 10:17:38 PM »
Code: [Select]
[b]Emily Rudd[/b];; claimed by Myst, Sep 24
7
Pruul / Re: Not the Queen you had in mind
« Last post by Elenor Lirion on Sep 24, 17, 09:14:32 PM »
The day Elenor had first held her Birthright Rose, she had almost died. That had been the first time she had ever seen an Eyrian like the man who stood before her now, and although the nightmares had faded after centuries, and even though she had prepared herself for the sight of him as best she could, it still sent shivers running down her spine. As his gold eyes bore into hers though, another memory from that night crashed through all the shield around her heart that Elenor had painstakingly built over the years.

Mine!

The thought sent her careening back a step, then, just as quickly forward, until she stood close enough to reach out to touch him.

Mine, mine, mine.

She had been a girl the last time, and that unnamed Eyrian hadn’t lived long enough for her to understand. Now that she was a mature Queen coming into her own though, the feeling wasn’t just alarming, it was overwhelming.

“Lady Lirion, my name is Fin al-Sabbah, Voice of Clan Sabbah.” Fin reached up and pulled the cloth that had covered his face away. Elenor sucked in a sharp breath, breathing in his Psychic Scent once more and almost missing his words altogether.

Then his eyes flitted down and some of her reeling mind got in gear enough to stammer, ”It’s a pleasure to meet you, Warlord.”

When he gestured to the side, Elenor actually jumped. Years of paranoia and care had made her an expert at being aware of her surroundings, but apparently today all that experience amounted to exactly nothing. Without even meaning to she oriented herself to face the Priestess, tensing. Perhaps it was unwise to turn her attention away from the Black Widow, who was probably the more dangerous of the two, but Elenor had never regained her trust for Priestesses. Still, these were members of clan Sabbah, and Fin’s nieces, so Elenor swallowed her fear and nodded to each in greeting, Thank you all for coming out to meet me, I admit I wasn’t expecting it.

Even taking her eyes off of Fin for that long had been excruciating, so as soon as he spoke again the two witches stopped existing. ”I...I think so too. I wasn’t expecting...might we speak alone?”


8
Pruul / Re: Not the Queen you had in mind
« Last post by Tavar al-Sabbah on Sep 24, 17, 08:49:49 PM »
The problems of the Sabbah still existed and Fin al-Sabbah did not know how to solve them.

Clan Sabbah required much in order to function, now that Adramelech was dead. A new Master of the Guard needed to be appointed to take Fin’s place. Before that, however, the Clan Sabbah needed a Queen. A Queen who could mend the divisions that Adramlech’s death caused. Shakira al-Sabbah, a Priestess who’d served under Adramelech, now stood as the de facto leader of the separatist wing of the clan. They were calling themselves the “True Sabbah” to anyone who’d listen and calling Fin’s claim to be the Voice of the Clan illegitimate.

Despite his best efforts, despite the promises he’d made to Farrah’s father and the elders who’d come and gone since, Clan Sabbah was now divided against itself.

He’d worked on drills with the guards during the day while Judiah prepared for her own daily work. Her suggestions about reforming the salt mines stuck with him. He’d cleaned himself and then set his mind to examining that issue. He scribbled down a number of notes on parchment and was midway through the things he wanted to see when the messenger arrived. 

"Lord Sabbah, we’ve found her."

You’re certain?

The runner, a youth named Tamir, nodded once in assent.

Gather me ten men plus Lady Amira and Lady Shadya. Assemble them outside in ten minutes.

That was hours ago.

He arrived on foot, with Shadya and Amira, at Clan Hague’s makeshift camp while the sun was high in the sky. Centuries of experience with the hammering heat of the desert forced Fin to become proficient with Cooling Craft and to teach his nieces the same. He’d covered his skin and head, leaving only his golden eyes visible. A Hague spokesman stepped forward, sepentine armband visible on his bicep. He bowed to the Voice of the Sabbah.

Right this way, Lord Sabbah.” the male said.

Shadya narrowed her dark brown eyes at the male, forcing him back half a step. Fin did not bother speaking to him. He opened the tent and stepped inside, expecting to find someone much like Zaehrah al-Bali, Queen of the Bali. Fin had found that Queen elegant and intelligent, someone who might help him mend the divide between the Sabbah and the Bali after centuries of enmity.

Inside, he found someone utterly different.

She was dirty, disheveled, and wholly inattentive to her surroundings. Shadya snorted in derision at the pale-skinned, sunburt woman before them. Amira shot a sharp glance at her younger sister, quieting her. Fin cleared his throat, hoping to avoid startling her.

The girl whipped around so fast that Fin’s hand was halfway to one of the two knives at his belt, opposite his khanjar, years of training and honed reflexes taking hold. It froze, however, the moment his eyes locked upon hers.

Amira and Shadya fell silent. Or they vanished, the desert swallowing them whole. Part of him knew that he should care, but he couldn’t bring himself to do so. There was someone else he should have been thinking of just then, someone who mattered, but Fin found himself caught in Elenor Lirion’s gaze. A lifetime of warfare, of rage, of wholesale slaughter followed by centuries of attempted atonement, all finally made sense. Ever since the Hunting Camps when he was a boy, he’d dreamed of finding the purpose of his life. First, he thought it was to be a warrior.

Then he believed that purpose in lay in being a husband.

Then a protector and adviser to the short-lived.

Now he understood.

I am hers.

Lady Lirion, my name is Fin al-Sabbah, Voice of Clan Sabbah.” Fin said, his voice low as he uncovered his face. His wings stretched out, black and membranous, before tucking in tight to his body. He never spoke this softly, not even to Judiah. He averted his eyes from Elenor’s, suddenly unsure of what all of this meant. After all these years, how was this happening now?

She is mine.

These are my nieces, Lady Amira and Lady Shadya.” he said, introducing the Priestess and the Black Widow, respectively. Both women were clearly Pruulian without a trace of Long-lived ancestry in them. He wanted to send them away, send them out of the tent. They were intruding on a private moment and he wanted to tell them to leave and go back to Onn. He didn’t, though.

I...I do not know how this works. I think we have more to discuss than I originally planned.

Mother Night and may the Darkness be merciful.

How am I going to explain this to Judiah?

9
Pruul / Re: Finding where we belong
« Last post by Judiah Vidanic on Sep 24, 17, 07:32:34 PM »
Judiah laughed softly, “Well if you are entertaining ideas of bringing another woman to bed, I’d have to properly vet her first - make sure she’s up to the standards you deserve.  I’m sure you understand.”    Not that she would - which was a surprising realization to her as well.  She didn’t have any problem with that sort of arrangement but the thought of sharing Fin with another woman make something curl up in her stomach in a strange, bitter way.

He moved, turning to face her and she suddenly felt shy and a little uncertain.  She didn’t like this feeling - like she was tiptoing carefully to a precipice when she would usually just leap forward.  She had never been someone to mince her words, guide them carefully and with diplomacy perhaps but never to hide from them.  And yet, she felt the weight of the moment and pondered backing away from what she wanted to say, needed to say.

She wanted to stay in Pruul, she knew that.  Had begun to think about the possibility even before she had met Fin.  She couldn’t deny that her final decision had rested quite a bit with him, this developing relationship and the feelings she had finally begun to let herself feel.  It wasn’t easy, to leave behind her home and everything she had worked for and while she didn’t doubt her ability to succeed and progress in this new land; what worried her the most was the concern in the path she wanted to proceed with him.

The visions she had seen, had experienced opened up worries and fears that she hadn’t been able to quell since the day in the desert.  She never doubted her ability to seduce men with her body and her talents but with Fin she wanted more than that and she now feared that there were obstacles buried deep within his psyche that would be more than she could break through.  She folded her hands on her lap and swallowed before looking up at him.

“When we were in the desert, when you were injured...there were things that I saw - call them visions or ghosts that you battled.  There were things said.”  She paused, recalling.  “I am not a mind healer, I have no skill in those things but I have wondered- have worried that perhaps what was said by those illusions were more than just fevered dellirium.  Perhaps it was a part of you - brought forth while you were weakened that your waking mind might not think of but some part of you still believes.”   She swallowed again, and her usual confident composure shrunk back.

“I want to stay in Pruul,” she said finally looking up at him, “and I want to stay with you.  This time with you has made me realize things that I want, futures that I had once believed impossible with my life that could be possible here.  But I need to know in truth Fin, if there isn’t some part of you that cannot reconcile who and what I am, what I will always be?  I’m not talking about the Courtesan.  That was a means to survive and a means to rise above my station.  I will always be a woman of sensual desires, a woman who will always seek to bring pleasures of the flesh to those who seek it, even if it isn’t by my own hand.   I will want to open another Red Moon house and train women and men who seek that lifestyle.  I want to continue the work I began with Kesare and help women who have been brutalized to rediscover pleasure with another.  These are things that I have become and may someday change.”

She reached out and placed her hand on his, light and nervous.  “I can never stop being Hayllian, no matter how much of Pruul I absorb.  A year from now or a thousand years from now I will always be Hayllian.  And I wonder, no I worry that perhaps that is the part of me you cannot accept and that someday those ghosts will remind you too much of the past and you will resent me.”  Her voice dropped.  “And leave me.  We might eventually part ways, our feelings fading as can happen but I would rather that then to look in the face of my beloved and see hate where I had once found affection.”

Strange stinging in her eyes and she lowered her gaze, blinking quickly to vanquish the tears.
10
Keep's Registry / Re: Eskandar al-Sabbah
« Last post by halyonix on Sep 24, 17, 06:38:26 PM »
ready for review!
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anything