collapse

* Welcome!

CLICK HERE if you're interested in joining, or if you'd just like a little more info about Blood Rites.

News
« Feb. otM Winners
« Chaillot under petition
« Feb otM Voting
« March otM Noms
« Anniversary Celebration
« January otM Winners
« February otM noms
« Character Adoptions
« Jan otM Voting
« 2018 Snowfall Results
« Superlative Winners
« 2018 Superlatives Voting
« January Snowfall
« Winter Icon Winner
« Dec otM Winners
« Real Life Jewels Voting
« Dec otM Voting
« January otM Noms
« Winsol Charity Raffle
« Winter Icon Voting
« Jan Snowfall Challenge
« Dec Snowfall Results
« Hayll Petition
« Winter Icon Contest
« Update to Caste Additions
« Nov otM Voting
« Dec otM Noms
« Dec Snowfall Challenge
« Nov Snowfall Results
« Nharkava Petition Vote
« Secret Santa Signups
« Oct otM Winners!
« Nharkava: Intent to Inherit
« Nov otM Noms
« 2018 Winter of Writers
« Sep otM Winners
« Oct Nominations
« Fall Cleaning Event
« Aug otM Winners
« Sep otM Noms
« Dhemlan T Petition Vote
« Glacia Petition Vote
« Fall Icon Winner
« July otM Winners
« July otM Voting
« August otM Noms
« DT is under Petition
« Revamp of Succession Article
« New Production Member
« Hayll is open for Petition
« Removal of Co-Plot Leads
« NEW Awards Board
« Chaillot is open for Petition
« Shalador is Open for Petition
« June otM Winners
« Glacia is under petition!
« May otM Winners!
« June otM Nominations
« May otM Voting
« Superlative Category Poll
« Seasonal Icon Contest
« April otM Winners!
« March otM Winners
« Current Petitions Snapshot
« Tacea Petition Vote
« DaM Petition Vote
« Glacia is open for Petition
« DaM is open for Petition
« March otM Noms
« Spring Icon Winner
« Territory Changes & Updates
« Feb otM Winners
« Tacea is Under Petition
« Tacea Open For Petition
« Nharkava Open For Petition
« Spring Icon Contest
« Happy 8th Anniversary
« Advancing Character Ages
« Dhemlan Terrielle is Open for Petition!
« Change to Territory Petition Requirements
« Jan otM Winners!
« 2017 Snowfall Results
« February otM Noms
« 2017 Superlative Winners
« 2017 Superlative Love Letters
« Winter Icon Winner
« Tacea is Soft Closed
« Disallowing "Underage" Characters
« Revamp of Craft Article
« New NPC Registration Process
« The Value of Jewels

Winter, 194 Years after the Purge

* Important Links

* Chat Box

Guest Friendly. No advertising please.

* BR Councils

* COTM and TOTM

* COTY and TOTY

Character of the Year


Thread of the Year

* Affliates

Affiliate with Us

Blood Rites RPG

Listed At

RPG-D Nerd Listings

Our Affiliates

   

* Credits

RSS Feed  Facebook  Tumblr    E-Mail

Canon: © Anne Bishop
Board's Plot: Blood Rites
Points Scheme: Mother Night
Ratio System: Blood Rites

Blood Rites best viewed in Firefox.
Established February 2010
by Jamie, Gina & Bowie.


* Plot Information for Dena Nehele

With the full force of the Guilds at her back, Rilandra Vlas seized the Territory Throne of Dena Nehele. The common born Province Queen now owes allegiance to the Master of the Guilds for his assistance in both securing the throne and securing Darcia Glassade's continual safety. Trapped between the demands of the Guilds and the demands of the Aristos, Riley is struggling to rule, finding the palace more of a cage than she could have dreamed possible.
Culture of Dena Nehele
Court of Dena Nehele
Myos Guild
Shaos Guild
Jacks Guild
Guilds Roster
Guilds FAQ

* Welcome Guests

You are currently viewing our forum as a Guest. While you can see all we do, you can't participate. Please think about joining, we love new players. Click Here for more information.


Author Topic: You've done harm, others have done worse  (Read 261 times)

Description: nick!

Offline Asimov Licht

  • Character Account
    • greenBR
    • priestess
    • Role

      Ward

    • Faction

      Territory Court

    • Territory

      Dena Nehele

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Reid

    • Posts

      38

    • View Profile
You've done harm, others have done worse
« on: Nov 30, 18, 04:25:38 PM »
Asimov didn't care about the Welverts and their reports. Perhaps she should've, what with her (relatively secret) rise in social status, but she just couldn't be fucked. There was so much to do: lessons, studies, her own projects, her review of the state of her House (hers! her House). It left no time for observing the interplay of Courts and courtiers. Especially since she no longer had to worry about finding a position for herself while her mother lived, and would never be required to serve in a Court. Political interplay mattered to a leader of an aristocratic house, but this kind? No, not really. Instead, she'd set down with a thick folder of papers, her mother's report on the status of Aegle lands after recent... situations.

She got a few pages into it--a few, more like halfway--before another Green thread tapped at her outer barriers. Asimov paused, looking up from her work, and frowned. Who would be bothering her? There weren't that many who could send a natively Green thread. Neston Quertis (who cared; she never spoke to him) and Nick (a good friend, a solid companion for late-night library journeys) and Thomas (attractive, therefore to be avoided for now). The old Steward, maybe... But he was Broken, and lost in his own mind besides. No, the chances were good that it was Nick, so she let the thread distract her.

*Asimov, please meet me at the altar.  Bring whatever is necessary to perform The Offering.  I will explain when I see you.*

Ordinarily, she didn't enjoy being ordered around. A Warlord Prince almost certainly had the social clout to do so, but she didn't think it particularly mattered in this case. They wore equal Jewels and had equal social status (aside from her own bastardy, which was a temporary state). If she hadn't liked Nick, she would've refused outright, and as it was there was a frisson of irritation behind her terse alright. But even deeper than the irritation was the curiosity. The Offering? Surely he didn't intend to do it now. He was well old enough for it, she supposed, but they'd never discussed it at all. And there was always the danger of a forced Descent yielding less than the person was otherwise capable of...

Yet... Asimov had only walked a few people through their connections to the Darkness, and the majority of those had been Birthrights. Offerings, sure, she'd done them. But only observed by another. She had already begun to gather the things she'd need before she turned towards the disused altar at the outskirts of the Court complex, intuiting that the only reason Nick hadn't simply grabbed her on his way to the family wing altar was that it was too close to whatever had forced his hand.

When Nick arrived at the altar, Asimov was already waiting inside, balancing the long black tapered candles in a candelabra that she'd had to hurriedly dust with a quick application of hearth craft. "I hope you know I've never done this on my own before," she said, lighting each candle with a tongue of Green witchfire. "I'm perfectly confident in it, but next time, a bit more warning would be nice."

She called in the crystal chalice that was her personal possession and set it down before her. "I assume you're the one doing your Offering?"





Offline Niccolo Faa

  • Character Account
    • green2red
    • wp
    • Role

      Journeyman

    • Faction

      Myos Guild

    • Territory

      Dena Nehele

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Sol

    • Posts

      215

    • I can kill you with my brain.

    • View Profile
Re: You've done harm, others have done worse
« Reply #1 on: Nov 30, 18, 10:45:29 PM »
Nick had annoyed Asimov.  He could tell by her response.  He knew that she did not like being disturbed when she was doing her own thing, whether that was her own studies or tasks set for her by the Court.  She was not unlike him in that regard.  She liked to focus on her work, and disruptions were unwelcome, if occasionally tolerated.  She was not in Court, so Nick could determine that she was otherwise engage.  Asimov did not waste her time, not when every moment was a gift from Mother Night.  Whatever she was doing, she considered it important, even if it was only important to her.  Nick believed she would come to him as he had asked, though her irritation made clear that he had been less than diplomatic about the request.  She was his, even if she did not know it, and she was a friend, even though neither had said as much in words.

If nothing else, curiosity would bring her, but he knew that it was more than that.  She was already there, which meant she had not been as far away from the altar as he had been, which also meant he had definitely interrupted something”I am sorry for making demands of you.  I am feeling harried, and it is uncomfortable.”  Nick nodded, ”The Offering is for me.  I did not have time to let you prepare, I am sorry for that as well.  I trust your faith and dedication, Asimov.  I would not have called you otherwise.”  The Green Warlord Prince looked back over his shoulder, as if he half-expected to be chased.  ”A Lord and Lady Welvert have demanded that I be removed from the Palace, and taken to their home in Tulzbruja.”  He met the Priestess’ eyes, ”I hope that we both agree that is not a suitable outcome.”

Nick watched her light the candles and prepare the chalice, conjuring it with casual ease.  ”My options were to kill them.  An option I was forced to immediately dismiss, or this.”  He gestured at the altar, ”If I have my Descent, the choices about where I serve become mine, and only mine—barring a Queen’s Bond, which has not happened to any Queen yet.”  He regarded the altar, the candles, and the chalice.  ”Tell me what to do.  I will do precisely as you say.”  He felt a small change around him, and realized that Aleia had supplied the hidden pockets she had been sewing into his clothes.  There would be dry food, jerky and the like, albeit in small amounts, and by the weight—another knife to add to his arsenal.  He did not think he would need that.  Nick then reached out to touch Asimov’s shoulder, ”Thank you for coming.”







Offline Asimov Licht

  • Character Account
    • greenBR
    • priestess
    • Role

      Ward

    • Faction

      Territory Court

    • Territory

      Dena Nehele

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Reid

    • Posts

      38

    • View Profile
Re: You've done harm, others have done worse
« Reply #2 on: Nov 30, 18, 11:59:12 PM »
"I was just reading some reports from my uncle," said Asimov, "it's not anything I can't do later." Right now, her decisions on that matter were unimportant, barely relevant. Uncle Menachem would take her aside and explain his choices to her, though he didn't have to, because it was important to him that she understand the various pressures that applied to an aristo house after such a disaster as what had befallen Tulzbruja. They'd talk it through, and whether Asimov had gone over the reports or not, the conversation would likely trend the same way. Still, she liked to do it. It made her feel involved.

In the Green light, flickering and fluttering like birds' wings, Nick looked sickly pale. She supposed she did as well, though no one had asked her her opinion on the matter and she certainly didn't have a mirror in the altar or on her person. It wasn't necessary for the Offering and so she'd left it behind. Asimov nodded along with his summary of the situation. His logic was sound, and she agreed with it entirely. It didn't quite dissipate the irritation of a studying fugue interrupted, but it did completely eradicate the directed annoyance. She wouldn't hold this against Nick, not when it was important, and not when she completely understood his purposes. "Well, I'm glad you didn't kill them," she said. "My family has a lot to do with theirs, and as I understand it there isn't a Welvert heir. Things don't need to be more complicated in Tulzbruja than they already are."

She placed a decanter of red wine on the altar, and rounded it to stand before it, rather than behind it. Her shoulders lifted and fell as she took a deep breath, centered herself, and reached out to the deep, Dark well of her personal power. The Green answered, singing to her. With cut Jewels, the voice was a choir, an unearthly chorus of every hand the Jewel had passed through before coming to rest with its current owner. Her Green, and Nick's, came to their hands uncut and near-silent, waiting to learn their rhythms. Now it seemed like it was a part of her, precious as the blood in her veins.

When she was ready, when the Green suffused her mind, she extended a hand towards Nick. He trusted her, and because of that trust he placed one callused hand in hers, and didn't resist as she sliced his palm open over the chalice with a bone-handled knife. His blood flowed, a steady drip that splashed thick red against the smooth insides of the glass. As it fell, she reached into his well of power and drew out a thread of his Green, guiding his strength into those few drops. When there was enough blood to fill half an inch of the slim chalice, she placed the knife aside and pressed her palm over his, channeled Healing into the gash. It healed over, a slim pink scar to show where she'd done her work.

Without speaking, she filled the rest of the chalice with red wine. It had a heady smell, a potent one. As she said, "You might want to sit down. Standing for twelve hours gets uncomfortable quickly," she knelt herself, the cup and its yarbarah in one hand. "Give me your hands."

She cupped his callused hands around the base of the glass, hers on the outside, and drew on their shared Green again. "There is a will which passes all understanding," she began. The words after the standard beginning came quickly, a whisper in the back of her mind that guided her. She could feel the presence of the Darkness, thick and cloying and wonderful, as if she were submerged in the drift of the Abyss. "May the spirit of Your will resound within this man, in the heart of this warrior, and in the life he lives with Your guidance and Your love. Awaken that which ought to be, Night Mother, who walks the abyss and dances between the stars. By blood and by our spirit You have given us the strength to change the world around us, to care for Your gifts.

"There is a will which passes all understanding. Give to this your son the strength to do Your will and walk in Your ways; give him the spirit of wisdom, understanding, and courage. Show him the ways of right judgement, of knowledge, and reverence. As he steps into You, and is surrounded by You, and is one with You, protect him with Your loving heart, and guide him to his destined place.

"Remind him of what we owe.

"There is a will which passes all understanding. May the fortitude and fidelity of his soul be made clear to You, Night Mother, may his time in Your embrace enlighten him. May his strength burn as a clear flame in the service of the Blood."

She opened her eyes, but there was nothing of Asimov behind them. The Priestess had descended into the Abyss, and from her mismatched eyes there was only the Green. "Drink," she said. "And I will take you into the Abyss."

Once the cup was drained, she drew Nick down, down, down, until they reached the Green. And as they descended there was a closeness, an awareness: the mote that was Asimov and the mote that was Nick. As close as she had ever come to another person as the Darkness drew them deeper. There was peace in her heart, a low hum of contentment. Here was her place. Here the Mother surrounded her so true and so deep that she felt known, down to her bones, down to the very marrow of her and her unworthy heartbeat. Here was the love that could only spring from knowing and being known, totally and completely, flaws and freckles.

*Sink,* she commanded. The command was not only hers but the Mother's order. Her prayer, the blood wine, the Craft she had created from his Jewel, all three served to prime his spirit, to turn the insurmountable barrier of his inner web to something permeable. *Sink,* she ordered, as if he could resist. To resist was to Break, and Nick would never do that.

She let him go.

Watched him Descend.





Offline Niccolo Faa

  • Character Account
    • green2red
    • wp
    • Role

      Journeyman

    • Faction

      Myos Guild

    • Territory

      Dena Nehele

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Sol

    • Posts

      215

    • I can kill you with my brain.

    • View Profile
Re: You've done harm, others have done worse
« Reply #3 on: Dec 01, 18, 01:28:06 PM »
Nick allowed time for Asimov to absorb what he had told her, and he had spent enough time with her now to understand, to some extent, how the information would trickle down through her mind.  He was not blameless for her irritation, but that was balanced by necessity, a thing she clearly understood.  ”I had not considered the potential impact on Tulzbruja.  That is a gap in my thinking I will correct in the future.”  He had not considered the larger picture, only Sway’s Rules.  He had thought of Riley and Jeremiah, of course, but he did not see their lives being worse after the Welverts were gone, but Sway’s  certainly would have been had he chosen that time to break the rules so very egregiously.  It would have meant no only an uncontracted death, but the uncontracted death of ruling leadership.

He did precisely what was expected of him, his eyes never leaving Asimov.  Nick did not truly know if The Offering represented a risk for his friend, for she could be nothing else but that.  What he did know was that he had called and she had answered.  He would remember that most of all.  He had been ready for his Offering for some time, he knew that to the depth of his soul, that his time had come—and was waiting, but—he had been worried.  As a Green, he was absolutely a danger, a worry, something and someone to fear, if not respect.  That was the right view.  Nick had nearly killed people that had never harmed him, all because of what he had endured in his past.  Asimov’s presence reminded him that survival was its own reward, and he had survived.  He wanted to wait until he felt more certain, but he would not have these strangers pull him from his home, he would not have his choices made for him.  Not ever again.  Nick had scales to balance, and he would balance them in Bidea, or die in the effort.

Asimov held his hand in hers, and cut open the palm of it.  He felt her move within him, and restrained the gasp it inspired.  It was a feeling like no other.  Sway had held his very soul in the palm of her hand, but she had not drawn from it.  Nick followed what Asimov did, but made not sound or move or exertion beyond what she needed of him.  She continued her work, filling the chalice, and the scent of it was strong, heady and rare.  He nodded when she advised him to sit, and he knelt with her, sitting on his heels, his back straight.  Sitting with Sway had prepared him for this, though Asimov could not know that.  The Priestess pressed his hand around the chalice, and Nick could not express the value of her touch against the backs of his hands.  Everything had become very real, very quickly, and she was his Guide.  Nick’s head tilted as she prayed, as if he wondered if something would respond, and bright cat-like eyes widened slightly when something DID.

<<  "There is a will which passes all understanding. Give to this your son the strength to do Your will and walk in Your ways; give him the spirit of wisdom, understanding, and courage. Show him the ways of right judgement, of knowledge, and reverence. As he steps into You, and is surrounded by You, and is one with You, protect him with Your loving heart, and guide him to his destined place.  >>

Love?  Who could love him?  Only one, and even then, Nick felt unworthy of it, though he clung to it with unseemly desperation.  Jeremiah and Riley cared for him, certainly, but they cared for so many, it was how they were built.  What did Nick know of it?  Nothing, and less.  How could Mother Night love a thing like him?  She was—what?  Everything?  Nothing?  There were better things, better people for such a goddess to attend.  He was nothing at all.  A murdered boy grown into a broken man.  A killer given purpose, for good or for ill, a Warlord Prince claiming territory by instinct alone.

<<  "Remind him of what we owe.   >>

Survival is its own reward.  He had been tested, and he had persevered.  He had survived.  At what cost?  What more could he pay?  All he had was burdens, not riches, not advantage, not reward.  Everything he had flowed from one moment in time, and one person.  He was balancing accounts because that seemed right.  No, that was not honest.  He balanced them because it was the only way he could understand all the good that was happening to him, the only way that he could make any sense of it.  What more could he give that had not already been torn away from him?

<<  "There is a will which passes all understanding. May the fortitude and fidelity of his soul be made clear to You, Night Mother, may his time in Your embrace enlighten him. May his strength burn as a clear flame in the service of the Blood."  >>

Bare my soul?  No.  Asimov would see him.  He was a dark and twisted thing, murderously scared of small spaces and the things that happened within them.  She was see how weak he had been, how worthless and small, with parents murdered before his eyes, and a family wiped out by his own boundless rage.  It was the only way.  A tear broke from the corner of his eyes that he ignored, his focus still on the Priestess.  He met her eyes, beautiful and perfect even as they were mismatched.  Nick drank as he was told to do, and nodded slightly when she told him what would come next.  He hoped that his soul would be found  worthy enough not to be tossed into the Abyss and forgotten, if that was even a thing that happened.

They slowly sank together, and he could feel Asimov beside him in a way that he never had before.  It was intimate and deep, and the sense she had of the Darkness, of the Mother, made him cry openly now. Tears flowed freely, as if he grieved again for the boy that would never know his flesh and blood mother, and feared that he would never know this Mother again.  There was an honesty in this place that pulled a thread of fear through his heart, but Asimov was there, steady and bright.  Then, she was about to let go, and for a moment, he thought he would deny it, thought he would turn back, and cling to her presence in desperation, and then he remembered.  He remembered who he had become.  He remembered who he was.  Hello, Little Nico…  Memory and rebellion swelled, and his heart and soul departed Asimov with a spiritual kiss of gratitude, and he sank.  He would not let fear steal away his choices, any more than he would allow the memory of his Uncle to do so.  Defiant, Nick sank as he was bid, and then reached down and down and down.

WHITE
YELLOW

The Abyss pulsed like the beating of some great heart.  For someone else, it might have seemed cacophonous, simply discordant drumbeats, no two the same.  There was a greater rhythm that sounded above them all, that vibrated through the Warlord Prince like the shudder of pleasure one might discover with their partner.  There was something, there was no void in the Abyss.  It was a great organism.  Mother Night surrounded him, the Abyss was her heart, and her blood and body were the Darkness.  She had brought him close, and let him sink into her heart, to flow with her Darkness.  He could feel it, but more than that, each and every White Jewel he could perceive sounded out to him, each one individual and perfect, sparking like the electricity of the nervous system.  Even in their numbers, he knew Archimedes Belmont, and others, like crossroads in the nervous system of Mother Night.  The sound was a glorious chorus, proof a life, and proof that death was not his only purpose.

The Yellow Jewels added their beat to the chorus of thrumming life, and here he knew some as well, but one in particular called to him.  He found Sway easily, and his heart ached for the loss of her Summer-Sky, but her Yellow shone beautifully, beat with strength and certainty, and that something that was only Sway.  Nick felt a smile in his heart, rare and true and tried to share with this soul, before he continued to flow with the Darkness, down through the Heart of his truest Mother.  His Soul laid bare, he had yet to be rejected, to be bled out like a poison.  Down he went, deeper into the heart of Darkness.

TIGER EYE
ROSE

Nick had been blind to the wonder of this Power.  He had been focused on one aspect of who and what he was, and had not looked deeply enough within himself.   He found Orianna, one of three, the Queen that had given him art and a means to express himself without Craft or violence or remembered pain.   Sora was here, one of the three Queens he would gladly serve in life, she who did not judge him for his fear or his temper.  He sensed Prince Bane, both his worries and his grudging respect, a man of purpose.  Each new depth, added a new rhythm to the already constant living greatness that surrounded him.  The deeper beats of Rose hearts called to him, and he reached out for a moment as though to touch the one he knew to be Jeremiah’s, who struggled for him even now, for every Ward, and for Laszlo.  Nick could do no less.  He thanked his friend for the example he set, and with renewed courage, continued along the arteries and veins of Mother Night, flowing with her Darkness, marveling at how one great heart could contain everything.

SUMMER-SKY
PURPLE DUSK
OPAL

Down and down he flowed, not yet having reached where he wait, where his Green called to him  He found Riley, and did not go near here, for her own safety, her Jewels drained so that she could be the Mother she always was.  Here he found Savi, another casualty of the Decimation, another friend, as he understood such things.  Their bond had been formed in what mostly amounted to silence, but that did not make it any less real to Nick.  He wished he could somehow embrace Riley, wished for the encouraging grunt of his now broken sparring partner, and instead pressed on in their name, in their honor.  He had debts to pay.  He had people to protect, and there was power yet to collect so that he could do so.

GREEN

Home.  Familiar and new, with a deeper, more primal beat than the others.  Each heart called to him each and every Jewel almost echoed his own.  Asimov was here, but also far above waiting for him, protecting him, holding his soul beside her own.  Gratitude ran through him, and after taking comfort in familiarity, after looking ahead to that shinning Sapphire place that awaited him, he pressed on.

SAPPHIRE
RED

Hello, Little Nico.

You do not belong here.

Of course I do, it was you that returned me to the Darkness, where did you think I would go?

You do not belong here.  Nick realized something, a truth of his soul.  I carried you here, I brought you with me.

You cannot be rid of me; this is where your journey ends.  You will not surpass me, Little Nico.

Nick was still, silent, and felt not only the embrace of Mother Night, but also the nearness of Asimov’s soul, and every heart that beat with him.  Every life that had touched his own, every heartbeat, every Jewel, every stroke of kindness, every Queen’s Touch, every one of Savi’s affirmative grunts, and every fighting dance he’d ever had with Jeremiah.  He remembered the fear that Julian demanded not only from their family, but from his conspirators, and then he realized who was afraid, who would be obsolete when Nick came to power.  For the sin of being Blessed by Mother Night, he had suffered, he had paid, and here now was what he owed.  I already have.

He could not kill what was already dead, and so he dove past the memory, past the Sapphire he did not want, and could not stand, and he came to the Red.  His soul brushed fingers of regard across the sound of Aleia Sala’s heart, and it was then that he heard a voice, no a choir.  It was many voices, calling to him, raised in a song of praise and love and family.  He saw it there floating before him, saw the singing Red Jewel, and reached out to it, only to find something reach for him.  His Mother’s Father, the previous owner of the watch in his pocket, a man he had never known, a man that had, like so many others, touched the Jewel that shone before him.  Nick gasped with emotion, with the sense of the embrace Asimov had prayed for, and the warmth he had never known until that very moment.  His soul reached out, and while the Gray beat deeply and seductively, he claimed this Jewel for his own.







Offline Asimov Licht

  • Character Account
    • greenBR
    • priestess
    • Role

      Ward

    • Faction

      Territory Court

    • Territory

      Dena Nehele

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Reid

    • Posts

      38

    • View Profile
Re: You've done harm, others have done worse
« Reply #4 on: Dec 02, 18, 04:42:20 AM »
Nick disappeared slowly into the dark water of the Abyss, drifting down, down. It didn't matter how deep he would Descend. The Sapphire, the Gray, they'd both take the same amount of time. An Offering didn't require its officiant to remain in the Abyss for those full twelve hours, dusk to dawn or, she supposed, mid-afternoon til dawn. It seemed to her that it would be an abandonment of her friend if she left him alone in the abyss and went to sit outside, or dusted. She stayed, tracking Nick, the mote of masculine Green that was the counterpoint to her own moonlight-jade of a soul. Dimly, somewhere far away, she heard the slow beat of her own heart. Her knees ached where the cold stone of the altar ground up against her bones. She could feel the tension in the small of her back, twinge in her hips. It didn't matter, though. She was with the Mother, and the Mother was with Nick, and they were together in the Abyss.

At the Sapphire, the mote of Nick's consciousness stopped. She wanted to reach down to him. Don't stop, don't stop, she thought: but it was only a thought, and not a sending. To intervene in a soul's sacred communion with Night would be the greatest impiety, near enough to blasphemy that she shuddered to even think of it. She kept her thoughts to herself, pressed them deep within her own psychic barriers, where they wouldn't reach out and interrupt this most holy of rites. They still sounded there, a ghost beating its fists against the fence-post: Don't stop. A little further. Nick would never be happy with the Sapphire. Less importantly, Asimov would feel such guilt if he stopped there. What if her inexperience had crippled him? What if she had robbed him of what could have been his? But the Red?

He slid further down, inch by agonizing inch--or so it seemed to her, so far away, isolated from what he thought and saw--and as she felt the ritual's power begin to dwindle, he dove past the barrier that marked the end of the Sapphire, and found his place in the Red.

In the real world, her shoulders twinged as she pressed her thumbs between Nick's palms, levered them open so, so gently. Every one of her muscles ached, the bone-deep tiredness of someone who's stayed up the whole night without preparing for the ordeal. But there, glimmering in the sputtering light of the burnt-out black candles, was a beautiful cut Red stone. Already set, full of brilliant bright fire, and indubitably Nick's.

"There is a will which passes all understanding," Asimov whispered. Awe shaded her voice soft, not strident. Sweeter than she'd ever been. "The Mother knows you, and here is a piece of her heart. A scale of her armor. Yours now, Prince."

Yes. His now. And he'd be a Ward no longer, and though Asimov was inexpressibly happy, she found herself inexplicably... sad. Tears pricked at the corners of her eyes, and she squinted through them.

"Traditionally, someone would be waiting for you outside," she said. "But this hasn't really been traditional. You should eat." And I should sleep.





Offline Niccolo Faa

  • Character Account
    • green2red
    • wp
    • Role

      Journeyman

    • Faction

      Myos Guild

    • Territory

      Dena Nehele

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Sol

    • Posts

      215

    • I can kill you with my brain.

    • View Profile
Re: You've done harm, others have done worse
« Reply #5 on: Dec 03, 18, 08:41:57 AM »
The great heart of Mother Night beat around him, as he flowed through the Darkness, rising now, rather than sinking.  He clutched his prize in his hand, his Offering.  Even though he had come for something, he had been given so much more.  He wondered of “The Offering”, as a name for this ceremony was a subtle riddle?  Had he offered himself, or had he been offered his Jewel, in exchange for being whatever it was he was meant to be.  Nick flowed up and up, and his perspective changed, now that he had a certain amount of clarity.  A certain burden had been taken from him, though he would need to think long and hard about how he had changed, because he was that; Changed.  It was not merely the Red, but something more.

As he cast he senses back to that wondrous place, back over the Mother, the Abyss and all he Darkness, he realized something.  Mother Night had accepted him, embraced him, folded him into Her heart, and now was letting him go, letting him drift back to Asimov and the Altar.  Nick realized that he was returning with a piece of the Mother, a shining scale, and just as he broke the surface, changing from a realm of the soul to realm of flesh.  He saw her in the depths of his soul and his heart.

A Great Dragon.  Infinite.  Endless. Pure.  Aware, and watching.

Nick felt his flesh return to him, felt the weight of his bone and muscle and skin once again.  He gasped, and felt moisture on his cheeks, as his eyes fluttered open and he beheld Asimov before him once again.  The Priestess murmured her prayer, perhaps as taken by the moment as he had been.  She had pulled open his hands, and there cradled within them was his Jewel, cut and Red, and singing with all those that had held it in their grasp before; a family that had embraced him.  It did not take away the scars of his life, but it lessened the regular pain, and bolstered his certainty that his life, though a struggle, was still more valuable than his death.  Asimov had given him more than one gift in that ceremony, and for that he had no words.  He could not vanish the Jewel away, that Craft had always escaped him, but he secured it in one of Lady Sala’s hidden pockets, and then lifted his hands to cup the Priestess’ face.

He stroked Asimov’s cheeks with his thumbs gently, and then pulled her into a hug, with both of them on their knees.  ”Thank you.”  He whispered, as the world came to him now through the power of his Jewel; every heart, every rush of blood, every hint of weakness, every place that his Craft could drive a wedge, and put an end to life.  Nick pulled in his senses, and focused on the Priestess in his arms.  He nodded at her advice; he had food on him, and then gently cradled Asimov in his arms and lifted her into them.  ”You were waiting for me.”  He got to his feet easily, strength and vigor infusing him, and he gave her a moment to vanish the things that were hers.  Nick carried her out of the temple, away from the altar, with something new in his step, something more in his already too bright eyes.  He carried Asimov to her room, where he let her easy the door open, lest he tear it from its hinges with a far too clumsy telekinetic push.

Nick managed to pull her blankets aside, and then settled Asimov onto her bed.  He gently brushed her hair from her face for a moment, favoring her with the briefest, slightest smile, before he pulled the blankets over her and tucked her in.  He pulled a chair up beside her, and pulled a hard biscuit from a hidden pocket and a bit of jerky from yet another.  ”I will wait here, until you sleep.”  He ate, and as he did, he cast his mind out for Sway.  Her Mark shone like a beacon for him now.  Along a Green thread, he spoke to his lover and mistress, *I am alright.  I have completed my Offering.  I would like to see you soon, but I must let Riley and Jeremiah know.*  And then along a Red thread, he reached out for Lady Aleia Sala, *I am well, and I am eating, Aunty.  You will see me soon.*  Asimov, Mother Night, and his maternal Grandfather had taught him something.  Nick did have family.  Not by blood, those that had not been innocent had been undeserving, or worse, and were now Returned to the Darkness.  Not by blood, but by choice, either theirs or his own.

Quote
Lady Sala replied on the Red, *I am both relieved and proud. Now get yourself home where you belong *

He finished eating, and opened his hand, regarding the faint scar left behind by The Offering.  Nick resolved to keep the scar, rather than have it completely healed away.  Then he brushed his hands clean, rested his hand atop one of Asimov’s and quietly waited for her to fall asleep.  As he relaxed, he sent out another thread, this one meant for Jeremiah and Riley, and something new suffused that communication.  Nick’s mind was always steady, always sharp, but it was always precise, coldly logical in some ways.  Rarely, very rarely, there was a sense of emotion, a sense of feeling, but what made this thread unique was not that there was a sense of heartfelt emotion, but rather what that emotion was.

It was joy.  It might be brief.  It might not happen again for years, but in that moment, it was his.

*My Queen, my Friend…Mother Night saw fit to give me a Red Jewel, and both of you.  I am well.  Once Asimov is asleep, I will come to you.*  He shared the drumbeats, the bright choir of those that had gone before him with his Red Jewel.  They sensed his fierce pride at having acquired it, and his wonder, at Mother Night and the Abyss.  *She was—wondrous.* 

Quote
There was almost an immediate response, though Riley's was mostly wordless. It was excitement, joy, pride. She was so happy for Nick, that much was clear, and it was wordless along the newly discovered Red that was now Nick's. He had the distinct sensation that the Queen was bouncing up and down with glee.

Jeremiah's response, however, was different. There was darkness around it, as if someone was shrouding and protecting the Rose-Jeweled male. Still, Nick would almost feel as if Jeremiah's response - his presence - was from the deep he had just returned from. The Black Widow Warlord Prince reached from there, brushed fingers along the Red that was Nick. You've touched the Abyssal sea and went deeper than the horrors that lurk within. Your voice is stronger, louder, and will never beat alone. If there was more, it was lost to the strange warmth of Jeremiah's presence - being in front of the fire on a winter morning - then it was lost to the rush of emotion that were almost a mirror of Riley's.

And then the thread closed, and Nick settled back in his seat.







Offline Asimov Licht

  • Character Account
    • greenBR
    • priestess
    • Role

      Ward

    • Faction

      Territory Court

    • Territory

      Dena Nehele

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Reid

    • Posts

      38

    • View Profile
Re: You've done harm, others have done worse
« Reply #6 on: Dec 03, 18, 08:01:36 PM »
Asimov squeaked when Nick lifted her, but there was hardly anything to do about it. Her Jewels weren't drained; she'd spent the last twelve hours in the Abyss, where one's power never quite ran out, but flowed and flowed. Her Jewels weren't drained, but her mind was, and by the time she formulated a plan to get out of being carried by a child, she'd already set her cheek against Nick's chest. She'd been so focused on the Craft she'd committed that she had failed entirely to react to his hug, except to stiffen and flush with embarrassment that he'd seen her start to cry.

"Of course, dummy," said Asimov. "I like being in the Abyss as much as you do." And they were friends, weren't they? There was a bond between them, more than just the moment they'd just shared--the long hours of an Offering--something forged in the ashes of the Decimation, among all of those bodies. Too smart, too Dark, for the younger Wards. (Though she supposed the Heartlys and the Orfan Warlord Prince were both older than she was, she never thought of them that way; to her, they seemed inestimably childish.) Of course she'd wait for Nick, even if it had been another Priestess performing the ceremony.

Even without much experience with Warlord Princes, she knew better than to argue when Nick tucked her into bed. She could feel his messages to others, or at least a few moments of them as they flitted past her to Lighter-Jeweled minds, but the effort to eavesdrop--and the disrespect required--kept her mind to herself. "You don't have to stay," she yawned, unsure whether she wanted the Warlord Prince to stay or go. One moment, she thought one way. The next, another. But she'd always been that way, just a little unsure about which way her mind was trending. She shoved one of her pillows into the proper shape before settling down again.

Despite the inner conflict over Nick's continued presence, Asimov fell asleep very quickly.





 

 

anything