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Topics - Carmine Valerio

Pages: 1
1
Glacia / here comes the feeling, but not the words
« on: Oct 07, 19, 02:38:40 AM »
the first gift
an unexpected delight

Carmine could not remember the last time that he had been interested in someone like this. Not since his Alma but then Alma was his other half, practically a piece of himself, and she did not count as one did not count things that were part of you. He had not expected that his trip would lead to his discovering of a kindred soul but he delighted in it.

Markus Niksala was a gift to the world and Carmine was beginning to think that he might have been a gift to him from Mother Night as well. It was not his appearance that caught him, no. Nor was it the way he smelled, psychic or otherwise, but his demeanor. The way that he carried himself, the way that he looked at people whenever he was certain no one was watching. Markus Niksala was a predator, a hunter among prey, and Carmine felt as if he were called.

So he began to follow him. Unseen, of course, and unnoticed. Carmine did nothing to alert him, did nothing that might draw his attention. The Warlord Prince had to be sure, he had to know without a doubt, that this Prince was what he had been looking for. Someone else whose heart beat a heavy, sticky pattern of the blood of others that had been shed.

It meant that Carmine would begin to leave him little gifts. Presents and trinkets that might have seemed fortuitously placed and just where they needed to be for Markus to stumble upon them. Most likely he would think nothing of such things. At least not until the first true present, something given with thought and intent.

There was no message attached but there was a feeling. One that would curl in the pit of Markus’s stomach the moment that he opened the soft leather and ran the tip of his finger down the smooth metal of one of the blades that were contained within. It was a dark feeling, one that would call to him.

The message was clear as that feeling faded: Do you want to play?

Someone was watching, someone was waiting, but whomever it was was so very interested in the things that Markus did and wanted to encourage him.

2
Glacia / and i'll compensate your greed
« on: Mar 23, 19, 08:24:17 PM »
Carmine was not an uncommon sight where he was currently, intending to meet a client. The Warlord Prince had made a name for himself within the courts of Glacia, a charming Sapphire-Jeweled male that had found a calling within the cold territory. More than that, to some, he would admit that the Dark Religion spoke to him. Explained so much that he had always wondered about. On the surface, Carmine was a merchant. He provided unique and rare antiquities and otherwise to those that wished to buy them. To his clients, he brought rarities that could not be found any other way.

All that, quite frankly, was complete and utter bullshit. What actually mattered was that the Dark Religion, Glacia's silent war that came because of it, was actually good for his business. Carmine found that within the courts of Glacia there were those that wanted to make use of the unique skill sets that belonged to Veritas, not that of his cover business.

What he had never expected - years ago when it had happened - was to meet the acquaintance of one of the Ebon-Grays. Prince Aksel Winterton was an interesting man, one that Carmine had watched carefully when they had first met. The Prince was a man who recognized within the Warlord Prince those things that made him far, far different than the others.

Such a person was an individual that was meant to be ally, not enemy, and so that began a rather lucrative business arrangement between the two of them. Once, at least, Aksel had realized the value there was to Carmine. There was every chance that they should have immediately disliked one another, given their personalities, but they got along well instead. Well enough that Carmine never particularly minded if he got a last minute request to be seen that would see his entire day and schedule out of sorts.

The smile upon Carmine's face as greeted a servant was one that reached his eyes. He watched as the servant kept cutting their eyes back to him, their face warming. It was rather predictable, to be honest, but then that was his life, was it not? Knowing the predictable nature of those around him. The surface thoughts of the servant were obvious, barely requiring that he even touch upon his talents.

"Thank you," he said, charming to a fault, as the servant bowed and left. Once alone, Carmine turned his attention to the room and perused the bookshelves while waiting. Nothing was touched, of course, as that was a matter of respect. The other part of it was that it was simply part of the facade, the act, the actions that he went through so that the rest of the world never realized how much he simply did not care or operate as they did.

Besides: it was far more interesting to think on what it was that had Aksel calling for him today. It had been a couple of weeks since he and his beloved Alma had had a project. With all the recent turmoil, the death of the thrice-blessed Elisif Brendan, it should have not been a surprise. Then again ... Carmine truly did struggle sometimes with finding it in himself to care. Oh, he could put on the facade, truly, but that did not mean he actually did.

That was his secret, of course.

3
Glacia / Carmine Valerio
« on: Jan 31, 18, 08:26:47 PM »
The Basics

Character Name: Carmine Valerio
Nicknames:
Age and Birth Year: 42 (b. 151AP)
Race: Short-Lived, with ⅛ Mixed Long-Lived
Caste: Warlord Prince
Birth Territory: Little Terreille
Home Territory: Glacia

Birthright Jewel: uncut Opal
Offering Jewel: uncut Sapphire (free slot purchased)

Role: Specialist
Faction: Veritas

Appearance

Play By: Maiko Andara
Distinguishing Features:
From his height of six foot four to blue of his eyes and the color of his skin that hints at his ancestry, Carmine cuts a striking picture. It's his smile that is truly stunning, though few ever see it, and it can light up an entire room.

Personality


Personality:
Sharp-eyed, cunning, and with little patience to suffer fools and otherwise, Carmine is a Warlord Prince that knows himself through and through. In full view of the public, Carmine carries himself well and finds that the perceptions (and misconceptions) of his caste aid him more than anything else. He takes delight in being regarded as something dark and dangerous, so easily pushed to the edge, because it allows him to operate as he does. Not afraid of making it clear that a line has been crossed, that someone has earned his anger, Carmine will quickly make his ire known by taking someone in hand. What he does then, be it a verbal or physical lashing, all depends on the behavior of the individual.

True control is not something that known to him, unbonded as Carmine is, but he has managed a facsimile of it through the years courtesy of his particular skill set and habits. When it comes to intelligence gathering, gaining knowledge from the mind of an individual, the Warlord Prince is truly talented. The brutal nature of his caste shines through as he is relentless in his pursuit of an individual, finding thrill in the stalking and hunting of a target before taking them down. Within his grasp, he then lets loose and the violent desires of his jewels and caste find release in his work.

It is his own capability in handling and navigating the mind, plus the addition of his Black Widow partner, that enables him to continue onward should a target be required returned alive and none the wiser. In those cases where it does not matter? Carmine truly gets to let go of the reigns, to sink into the darkness of all that he is to savor the moment.

Such productive work and activities are what enable Carmine to play the part of the well-mannered beast around the population at large. He is charming to a fault, more than capable of navigating the social and political waters of the territory, and does so with ease even if he is another shark within already bloodied waters. Never is he without that edge to him, that knowledge that he is a Warlord Prince, darkly blessed, and should not be trifled with.

The only time that another Carmine is seen is within his personal life. This side of him is guarded against most discovering because it is the source of some confusion within him, even sometimes seen as a weakness that he would gladly be without. While he fundamentally understands emotions, as one must in his line of work, he struggles with actually letting his real feelings be seen, limited as they can be save for his anger. They are a weakness, a part of him that he would rather not be, but they cannot be denied. So he dulls this by only letting them out with those that are his. In those private moments, when Carmine is alone with someone trusted, he is able to let go.

Carmine's sharp-tongue is softened, that predatory gait not so prominent, and his gaze more tender as he takes the time to enjoy those that he desires to spend time with. Such individuals that see this side to him are rare and kept close, as not many are able to contend with the truth of what Carmine is. Even those that he has taken to bed may not know him for who he truly is, only able to claim that they have experienced his sexual hunger and nothing more than that.

The truth is that even Carmine longs for more than just one person who understands him. He craves to have even just one more person that could be considered an equal. This is what often spurs him forward, keeps him moving from place to place never satisfied with what he finds. Within the Warlord Prince is a need to know and be known in turn, though some part of him thinks that it may never be the case. Is it even possible that there exists someone out there that he does not need to see changed in some way? Until then he contents himself with his work, with his beautiful Alma, and continuing to slate his thirst upon those that have fallen within his sights as prey.

Likes:
  • His Work & Projects - Carmine is a problem solver, the Warlord Prince that one would want on the job when they say it cannot be done, that a group cannot be swayed or that a person’s mind cannot be changed. He enjoys his work and delights in being able to bend and direct the wills of those around him; to do exactly what they say cannot be done. It takes a skilled hand to do what he is capable of, especially without it being so easily noticed or tracked, and Carmine takes pride in the fact that what he does, he does so well.
  • People Watching - Not always the most sociable person, especially so as a Warlord Prince, Carmine instead enjoys sitting back and watching people. There is so much to learn, to gain insight into, as he watches people going about their lives. That it satisfies his predator's need to watch and pick out prey is just another thing about it he enjoys. It is also one of his preferred ways of gathering intel and it is also what enables him to carry out his work as most do not even realize how much they give away when they idle or when they do something as simple as chitchat. With their minds otherwise occupied, he is able to slip right in.
  • Almandine - Beautiful Alma, lovely Alma. More than a friend, beyond even a lover, she is his pride and joy; his magnum opus. She is the one thing that has weathered the years from his youth, always by his side, and he cannot imagine what his life would be like without her. Not that he ever worries about such because where he goes, so too does Alma, because true friends never leave one another.
Dislikes:
  • Being Touched - Touch and contact may be something some Warlord Princes need but Carmine finds that he abhors it. Unless you are his, or likewise are permitted to do so, touching is a one-way ticket to finding yourself put down. Carmine is quick to lash out at an individual if they do not take the verbal warnings and otherwise he gives out.
  • Disruption - With so many carefully calculated plans and otherwise going on, Carmine does not take kindly to any sort of disruption while he is working. While he might forgive an interruption if there is a reason, in most cases disrupting his work or otherwise diverting his attention results in an irritable Warlord Prince right in your personal space.
  • Pretentious Nitwits - Nothing is so aggravating as those individuals who believe themselves greater than they are. The ones who think they are worthy of all that Mother Night has created but have little to nothing to show for being worthy of it. Carmine takes particular delight in tearing such individuals to pieces and particularly enjoys the moments where they just can’t quite believe that he was ever affronted in the first place.
Fears:
  • Losing Mental Acuity - It is his own sharp mind, his own intelligence, that enables him to act as he does. Were Carmine’s mind to become compromised, to start to fail, it would be a worst case scenario. As someone who spends a large deal of time perusing the minds of others, he knows how to recognize the signs of such and keeps tabs on his own state of mind. Yet it does nothing to stop the fear that something could happen one day. After all: he does not know what his parents would have been like had they grown into their old age, so what awaits him is unknown.
  • His Fall - The likelihood of this is nonexistent, Carmine extremely effective at covering his tracks and otherwise ensuring that there is absolutely no method of tracking him or his work. That said fears are often irrational and cannot be reasoned with, He would be a fool to ignore the whisper in the back of his mind that says be careful, be mindful, and never be found out or caught. There is a Price for everything and with every passing year he continues to raise it but as far as he is concerned Mother Night is the only one who can claim it from him.
  • Almandine’s Safety - Beloved Alma is collared and kept close, as she is meant to here within Glacia, but Carmine does worry about her safety. As she is near and dear to him, he goes to considerable lengths to keep her safe and protected (even if she is quite able to protect herself, Black Widow that she is). Yet within Glacia, those who are seen as not favored are sometimes considered lesser are treated poorly and worse and Carmine wants no such attention to fall upon her. Not when she is the most important treasure that he owns.
Craft Strengths:
  • Mind Delving - Years of practice and otherwise has enabled Carmine to be adept at slipping through someone's mind quickly and efficiently, leaving behind little trace. With his knowledge of how the mind and memory work, the Warlord Prince specializes in being able to locate and isolate relevant memories or information. This leads to an almost uncanny comprehension of people and their motivations and is extremely useful for securing himself with an individual or group as necessary.
  • Compulsions - Subtle and longer lasting than others of the same jewel rank, Carmine's compulsions are things of art. Once within an individual's mind he is able to use his skill in mind delving along with compulsions to shift an individual's perception of their memory. With the proper phrasing and application of compulsions, what was once perceived as a good memory - under his influence - becomes a bad one or vice versa as necessary. This enables him to use further compulsions to shift the individual’s opinion or thoughts to where he wants. In most cases, this requires him to periodically refresh the compulsions but this talent particularly shines when he works in tandem with Almandine turning it truly insidious.
Craft Weaknesses:
  • Warlord Prince Craft - With all the focus that Carmine has put upon his mental capabilities, his skills with even the most basic of Warlord Prince craft have atrophied to nothing at all. He is not at all capable of channeling his rage into others, cannot seem to mark a target with a touch of his jewel power, and struggles when it comes to fights that see the odds against him and multiple enemies around. It has forced him to pull out of situations, more often than not, and ensured that unless he knows for sure he can win with mental skill alone he may not press an issue for concern of a potential physical fight that might see him losing.
  • Physical Manifestation of Craft - Capable of using craft that remains invisible, such as telekinesis or shields, Carmine cannot - despite all the attempts to learn - manifest or coalesce his jewel strength into a physical form. This means that he cannot call forth power bolts or witchfire or other similar, and quite basic, types of craft. Trying to do so results in exhaustion at best and a blinding headache at its worst.
Life Story

Family:
Mother: Fiore Valerio (45 - d. 172AP) - witch - Rose to Purple Dusk*
Father: Rainieri Valerio (52 - d. 172AP) - Prince - Summer Sky to Purple Dusk*

Companion: Almandine Bone (41 - b. 152AP) - Black Widow - Yellow to Summer Sky

* selected jewels
** rolled jewels

History:
While his father might claim Glacian ancestry, Carmine can claim no such thing. His mother - Fiore, a native of Little Terreille - was fixated upon by a dark jeweled Dhemlanese Prince (barely such, for he was only ¼) for his Rut and, in the aftermath, was with child. While contraceptive brews and otherwise were a common practice among the population, they were not something that Fiore concerned herself with. The reason was a simple one: Rainieri was unable to have children, despite the influence of many Healers. So while many might have not seen the pregnancy through, Fiore and Rainieri seized the chance for what it was.

They would have a child and raise him as if he was the child of their union. So when the time came for Carmine’s Birthright Ceremony that became a truth as Rainieri was given his paternity, finally a true family within the eyes of the Blood at last. Yet Carmine’s Opal Birthright was somewhat troubling with his Warlord Prince caste. There was something not quite right about their son that they could not place their finger on. He did not have the normal reactions that a child his age should have. Carmine watched all that went on around him with a predatory glint to his eyes but disinterested at the same time.

The only time his reactions seemed normal was when someone managed to trigger his anger as a growing Warlord Prince. Then - and only then - would Carmine lash out, every bit the frustrated and agitated young child that he was tempered by his caste. There was only one individual that seemed to be spared his temper and that was the child of Quinia and Cordovan Bone, Almandine. She was barely a year younger than Carmine but they had been inseparable from even before their Birthright ceremonies. The young witch was the only calming influence upon the Warlord Prince, able to put a hand upon him and refocus his ire.

Due to this there were talks, of course, between the families that they might eventually wed when the time came. Those talks solidified more when, not long after her thirteenth birthday, Almandine’s snake tooth came in. Carmine was enamored with Almandine even more, especially once her lessons began as a Black Widow. While he had no desire to walk the paths of the Spider (he was content, thank you very much, that it was Almandine’s place to be), he did find interest in that of the mind. When she came back, speaking to him about the mind, what she had learned, his focus was stolen.

It was from that moment forward that the Warlord Prince began practicing and working upon his own abilities. There had always been something fundamentally wrong with Carmine, something that made him look at all others, save for Almandine, as if they were things to be used or otherwise manipulated. So as she grew as a Black Widow, Carmine grew into something far more insidious.

He started with his parents Fiore and Rainieri. To Carmine they were weak, ruled by their emotions, and flawed in so many ways. For a little while, as he began, Carmine thought that he might have been able to make them better. After all, they were lighter than him and it was so very easy to break into their minds. First was his father, who was not even truly the male that sired him, and Carmine found him wanting. Looking over his thoughts, his mind, Carmine found that his will was practically non-existent. It was easy to weave his Opal through his father’s mind, to make him forget what had happened.

Then he turned to his mother, repeating the process. Over the next few months, Carmine learned to hone his abilities, especially when it came to delving within the mind of another. With their minds already opened to him, it was easy to pick up their surface thoughts when he went looking. Yet throughout that he never saw a way to make them better, to make them more than they were. It left Carmine itching to look within others, to move beyond them.

Yet he did not account for one thing, something he would never do again: his darling Almandine. Closer and closer to the time of their Offerings, she had truly come into her own as a Black Widow and recognized the signs within Carmine’s parents. It was after confronting him, pushing Carmine into a fit of rage, that he used his skill to break through Almandine’s barriers and into her mind.

... and it was exquisite. The mind of a Black Widow was like no other and Carmine did not find it wanting. What he found instead was one word that had flitted through her mind: monster. The word did not even register, completely unfathomable to Carmine. How could he be a monster when he simply wanted to understand?

So Almandine became his first true project. The process was not an easy one, it took time, effort and keeping Almandine with him. With mind delving and compulsions at his fingertips, refined from use on his parents, he was able to at least put her under his thrall. As she was always with him, never far, the need to refresh what he kept upon her was never a worry and he grew more aware of the length of time before such faded. The emotional trauma of such an attack lingered but then what did it matter? She was with him and he could smooth things out over time.

When it was done, Almandine looked upon him with not horror but wonder. With more love and understanding than there had been before because he cared for her so. How ever had he survived all these years with parents that did not understand him? Carmine now had the perfect partner, one that would always be by his side. The problem was, of course, that if Almandine had noticed his parents then others probably did as well. Staging their deaths as an unfortunate break-in by Jeweled Blood murderers was far too easy.

Covering their tracks was the harder part but they managed it with the Valerio home burned to smoldering ruins, done by the attackers to ensure there were no tracks. With his Sapphire in hand, Carmine was the only heir to his family and all the money that that entailed. He still had no home, of course, but the Bone family was quick to offer him a place to stay. Especially since he was so kind and attentive to their daughter for all that he was a Warlord Prince, their tendencies well known.

It did not take long for Carmine to get that itch again, however, as he watched Quinia and Cordovan. This time, however, he had an assistant in Almandine. She was at his side as he broke the barriers of their minds and started shuffling through their memories. Once again he found them lacking, could not understand why they were so weak. They were flawed, pitiful creatures, unlike himself or Almandine.

So they had to go.

Carmine had been the one that had taken the lives of his parents, it was a rite of passage not unlike his Offering, and so he placed the blade within Almandine’s hand a few months after her Offering. Encouraged her when she briefly hesitated in killing them and - when she broke down crying afterward - gently picked her up. He looked within her mind, saw the weakness within it, and saw it undone. Now she had wanted to do it, she had not hesitated, and she even found enjoyment in the death of her parents.

She was free, just like he was, and their deaths - just like those of his parents - were covered up with no trails to point to them. After the death of Quinia and Cordovan they did not stay very long. Carmine wanted to travel, to stretch his wings, and see what the rest of the realm had to offer with Almandine at his side. With the coin afforded to them with the death of their families, they were able to begin their travels. When that coin started to run short, neither of their families was truly wealthy, Carmine decided it was time to truly put himself to the test.

This was how Carmine and Almandine started to make a name for themselves. They worked efficiently, able to gather information or an individual, as necessary. It was with one contracted job that they truly took off. Told to sway someone’s opinion, Carmine’s particular skillset came to the forefront as they captured and altered the mind of the individual. All it took was access behind their barriers, Carmine making use of gratuitous of his skill with delving and subtle compulsions to change the tone of certain memories, and their opinion would begin to slowly change. All of their own free will, or so they would think and say.

With Almandine with him, to help ensure the spellwork was solid and could not be found, no one would ever know. As long as the two of them were together, that they worked together, there was nothing that could be done. They eventually took the name Veritas, something that people could search out to find them if a job was needed to be carried out.

One successful job led to another and another, the pair following where each took them until they found themselves in Glacia. It bothered him to collar his lovely Almandine but that was - and is - the way of things within the territory, the will of the Dark Religion. Carmine presents himself as a devout follower of it and he plays the role well for someone that isn’t native to Glacia. Yet there is little that Carmine truly believes in outside of himself and his Black Widow.

The silent war within Glacia is a boon for their business, though they operate as shop-owners, a pair of merchants who trade in antiquities and otherwise for the aristocrat that wishes to furnish their own. Between their two jobs, Carmine and Almandine are able to live comfortably while the Warlord Prince moves in and out of the social circles of Glacia, a charming novelty of a man from outside the land that has found his calling and faith within the territory. When it is not his tales and travels that are sought after, or the wares that are sold within their shop, there's always use for someone who can change the opinions of those around them.

With words alone, Carmine will say, because it is his secret that it can be far more than that.

Show Us What You've Got

Character in Play:
She was so beautiful, his Almandine. Even as her eyes stared at him vacantly, silent tears rolling down her cheeks, she was still absolutely entrancing. It hurt him to do this, to have to take a stronger guiding hand, but it had to be. Carmine had no choice if he wanted to make sure that she would always be his.

He pressed his lips to her forehead, cradled her face in his hands. "I am so sorry, dear Alma, but you know I cannot abide weakness." His breath washed over her cheek, nose brushing along the skin before he whispered into her. "Not even in you."

Carmine gathered himself and reached out for her mind. It came to him, easy as it always did, but her barriers did not open to him. Not like they had in the past, not like all those times she had willingly lowered them so that he could look within and see as she did. They were closed, unwilling to lower, but he knew how to fix that.

It hurts me to do this, you know, he murmured to her gently as he felt a tremble go through her body, but it is the only way. You must always be perfect, Almandine. Never anything less. Carmine pulled himself back, reached within and gathered up a few sips of his Opal, and surged forward.

Almandine's barriers never stood a chance, not against him. Not against the Warlord Prince that she had let within - in so many ways - time and time again. The first of her barriers fractured, a gap left behind for him to go through. Carmine felt as she clutched at him, a sob stuck in her throat.

"Please ..." she breathed out.

"This is the only way, beloved," he said, an Opal-fueled compulsion layered within his voice. "This is how it must be. Be still. Be calm. It will be alright soon. I promise."

She clutched to him harder as he gathered another sip of his Opal and surged forward again. Another barrier gone. His Black Widow would have fallen were it not for him holding her upright. Yet her eyes slid shut, no longer vacantly watching him. It was alright.

When she opened them again she would know him and the world would be as it should.

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