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Seven children are destined to save Pruul and shake the traditions of the territory to their very core. In response, factions have broken the peace of a previously unified territory and violence has erupted across the dessert. It is a battle between the past and the future, the young and the old, and blood won’t stop seeping into the sand.
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Author Topic: Can You Drown Under Waves of Sand?  (Read 122 times)

Description: trigger: depression and self-destructive behavior

Offline Sarina al-Sabbah

  • Character Account
    • opal2red
    • queen
    • Role

      Puppet Queen

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      The True Sabbah

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      Pruul

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      [Link]

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      Danika

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Can You Drown Under Waves of Sand?
« on: Sep 26, 19, 09:55:56 PM »
Set about a week after https://www.bloodrites.net/pruul-42/shred-my-heart-and-eat-it-with-sauce/



She. Had. Failed.

Every thought of every day circled back to that one.

The Queen was certain she saw derision or hatred in every face she saw, especially the one that looked out of her mirror every morning that showed both in ever increasing measures.

Prince Matin’s presence in her room and in her life was a constant hammerblow on her heart and Sarina couldn’t look him in the eye. It wasn’t easy avoiding someone who had moved into her suit but Sarina was giving it her strongest effort. She checked each morning and each evening to make sure she hadn’t dreamed that he was still alive, but other than that Sarina pretended he wasn’t even there.

Nightmares plagued what little sleep she managed to get. Food tasted like sand and sat  in her stomach like rocks.

Whispers followed her as she walked the hallways of the Sabbah Residence, even when no one else was around.

There was no comfort to be had from her males. There was no comfort in solitude.

Even making herself bleed only brought a fraction of a moment’s distraction.

Now though…

Sarina hadn’t eaten in almost three days. She’d been pushing food around on her plate until her males were distracted and she could vanish it. Guilt over that horrible waste threatened to make her buckle under the weight she carried on her soul. There were still people starving on the streets of Onn who would probably kill for the food she threw away. Every time she did it, Sarina couldn’t stop herself from digging her nails into her thigh until blood welled up around them. There was something wrong with her. Didn’t they see that? She didn’t deserve to eat, but Danyal and Ehsan wouldn’t stop putting food on her plate.

Sarina had memorized every crack in the wall by her bed over the last two nights as she stared at it through the night. Sleep wouldn’t come to her. She dug her nails into the cracks and pulled at the stones until her fingers bled. She didn’t manage to make so much as a single new crack, but seeing her blood smeared on the wall brought her the slightest measure of peace before she guiltily vanished the blood and pressed her fingers into her mattress to staunch the blood.

Morning came and Sarina dressed mutely. Breakfast was served and Sarina couldn’t even bring herself to pick up the fork. She simply turned away and moved to sit in her window without a word.

I’m done pretending. If I don’t eat it, surely they’ll give it to someone who deserves it. Then I won’t have to feel that failure at least.




Offline Ehsan al-Tair

  • Character Account
    • pd2green
    • prince
    • Role

      Bonded Escort to Sarina al-Sabbah

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      Pruul

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      Lene

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Re: Can You Drown Under Waves of Sand?
« Reply #1 on: Sep 29, 19, 09:46:26 PM »
Ehsan strode through the hallways of the Sabbah residence, a tight and a determined look on his face.   He wasn’t a stranger to this walk, he had been making it at least twice daily for the last couple of weeks that even all the changes of guards knew him by recognition and stopped giving him sideways glances.  The fact that he strode with arrogant authority into their Queen’s private room however did still earn him a few looks of distaste.   He ignored them as he always did.

As if I care what you think.  If her ‘husband’ hasn’t thrown me out yet, you really don’t have a say.

Eshan had an extra important reason for this visit.  It had taken him the better part of the last week and no end of negotiations but he had finally achieved his goal and gotten the permissions he needed.

Without even so much a knock, he pushed open Sarina’s door without breaking his stride, pushing it closed behind him with a loud slam.  She was taking breakfast in her room as she had been the last few days and as usual she hadn’t touched a bite of it.  He vanished the whole tray, plates and all from under her nose as he gave her a quick once over.  Her wardrobe opened at his will and he reached in to pull out a pair of soft leather boots, a long pair of trousers and a comfortable linen blouse with a dust colored burnoose that didn’t hang to her ankles and wouldn’t get tangled around her legs.

“Change, and quickly or I’ll strip you myself.”  His eyes flashed with something a little more heated than he intended at the thought and he couldn’t resist the smirk of a smile that shifted his lips.  “And then we will be doubly late.”   When she didn’t move right away, he stepped towards her.  She scrambled from her seat and quickly moved over to where he had placed the clothing.

“We are leaving the city for the day.  I finally convinced Shira that you were going to be useless to her if she left you to wither in your room and Zhaleh isn’t going to get any healthy grandchildren from a weakened mother so they agreed.   We have until sunset so the longer you daudle the less time we have.  It’ll take us the better part of the morning to get to the oasis thanks to those blasted worms diverting the travelling roads.”   He crossed his arms and stared at her impatiently.

Offline Sarina al-Sabbah

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    • opal2red
    • queen
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      Puppet Queen

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      Pruul

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      Danika

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Re: Can You Drown Under Waves of Sand?
« Reply #2 on: Sep 30, 19, 09:26:11 PM »
She barely even looked up as Ehsan came striding into her room; his presence was familiar and welcome enough that it was only the abrupt way that he slammed her door closed that got a reaction through the apathy that engulfed the young Queen.

“Change, and quickly or I’ll strip you myself.”

Sarina blinked at her First Escort, confused by his words and not a little nonplussed by the clothing he had selected. It was a favored outfit from before she came to Onn and far plainer than anything Lady Shira had deemed appropriate for a Queen to wear.

Ehsan didn't seem to be in the mood to be patient though, and as he came towards her, Sarina scurried to follow his instructions, taking the look in his eyes to be impatient anger.

She had just picked up the clothes her Bonded had chosen for her and was about to turn her back to him out of a sense of modesty when Ehsan said they were leaving the city for the day. Sarina stared at him, sudden hope rising painfully in her as the Queen clutched her clothes to her chest. They were going out in the desert?! Even if it were just for the day, it would be wonderful.

Ehsan crossed his arms curtly and Sarina turned to change as her heart plummeted into a pit of despondency.

At least her simple gown was easy to shrug off as she suddenly felt numb. Cream colored cotton fabric pooled at her feet. Perhaps I can talk them into leaving me behind when they return. She shivered as a frission of hopelessness rolled through her as she hurried to finish dressing. Maybe she could slip away without them noticing? At last she stood beside Ehsan, fully clothed and head still bowed, waiting for something.




Offline Danyal al-Hague

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    • bo2red
    • warlord
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      Master of the Guard

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      Sabbah Clan

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      Pruul

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      DragonGirl

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Re: Can You Drown Under Waves of Sand?
« Reply #3 on: Sep 30, 19, 10:11:21 PM »
Dan stood by three horses in the courtyard and checked Sarina's saddle for the hundredth time. It was secure, but it was something he could fret over that was tangible and fixable. His Queen's depression, the dire circumstance they were in, and the madwoman running this show were not so easy to deal with. Danyal al-Hauge prided himself on being a calm man, but these last months had frayed and cut at that calmness like nothing before in his life.

Sarina was poisoned and in danger around the clock. She was emotionally wounded every day, made to do things her heart objected to, and exposed to horrors she did not deserve. He had thought service to Elenor would make the last of his hairs go gray, that the blond Queen was as danger and trouble-prone as they came.

He had been wrong.

But today, they were going to fix some of that. He and his Bond brother had talked over the past few weeks and months, made plans in secret where they would not give their Queen more worry. Both had agreed: her life and sanity came before theirs, and above all before Clan Sabbah. Not that Danyal wanted to see it fall, but he'd be damned before he saw it destroy his Queen.

After what felt like hours, Ehsan and Sarina appeared. She was wearing appropriate clothes but there was no spring in her step, no excitement in those soulful brown eyes. It made Danyal's heartache, and not for the first time he cursed Elenor, wherever she was hiding.

You said you would protect her, and you left her behind. This was your mess and yet every time you write, it is only to put more weight on her shoulders.

If he ever saw that girl again, he was going to shake some sense into her, and make sure that she understood the full weight of what she had done to a Queen far too young and good to bear the weight of this doomed Clan and its Spider.

"Lady Sarina, let me help you up." Though technically it was her First Escort's job, Danyal could not help himself. If things went to plan tonight, there was a chance he might not see her for some time... if ever again. As ever, a thrill of sedate pleasure coursed through him at the touch of her hand and unable to resist himself, he pulled her into a tight embrace before helping her onto the nearby mare.

As soon as they were all in the saddle, they departed. Ehsan led the way, being of the Jinan, and Danyal kept his eyes on the streets, tense and ready for trouble. He also watched for any tails, of which he was sure there were several. He spotted the first just as they neared the eastern gates from which they could access the rocky pass that was now the safest route in and out of the city. With a casual flick of his wrist and burst of Red Craft, a small metal ball shot from his hand. A second later a soft thud announced a perfect strike to the back of the head of the Warlord trailing them. Danyal coughed, covering up the gasp and thud of the man falling to the ground. 

He checked to make sure Sarina had not noticed, then shot out his hand to retrieve the small metal ball - now covered in blood - and continued scanning the road.

The second one was harder to spot. She kept her distance but after they turned off the main road he spotted her.

He waited until they were rounding a band and Sarina was momentarily out of sight, then turned in his saddle and with the same deft ease, though a little more Craft to penetrate her Opal shield, pushed the second True Sabbah off the cliffside path.

Two bodies would look suspicious. One body and one broken leg, less so.

There was, unfortunately, a bit more noise this time, but the woman had been far enough away that a whistled tune covered the sounds of her yells of pain.

It was only then that he gave Ehsan the psychic command to break out into a trot, then a gallop as soon as they reached the rocky flats. They rode hard for a good hour. Danyal only relaxed after the first fifteen minutes, when no pursuit followed. Once he wasn't distracted with what lay behind them, he spent the rest of their journey staring at his Queen. She did not ride well; in fact, Sarina clung to the saddle and reins with a death-grip, but with the wind blowing through her hair she looked a little healthier. This was where a Pruulian Queen belonged - out in the desert not cooped up behind stone walls. 

It was near noon when they slowed and stopped at the top of a sheltered ravine. Here, at the foot of the mountains and sheltered from the harshest rays of the sun, a little vegetation had sprung up around a tiny, narrow oasis. Ehsan led them down a windy path then helped Sarina dismount, while Danyal scouted the area to make sure it was safe.

When his paranoia had been sufficiently indulged, Dan walked back over to his Queen. He ran his knuckles across her cheek, then under her chin to tilt it up so that she would look at him instead of the ground.

"I have something I need to tell you, Sarina, and you, Ehsan, but I need you here to listen, not the shell she's been turning you into."

Offline Sarina al-Sabbah

  • Character Account
    • opal2red
    • queen
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      Puppet Queen

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      The True Sabbah

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      Pruul

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      Danika

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Re: Can You Drown Under Waves of Sand?
« Reply #4 on: Oct 05, 19, 09:20:14 PM »
Sarina silently followed Ehsan with her eyes downcast as he led her to a courtyard where Danyal waited. Her heart tried to be happy to be together with both of them, but then she realized that Danyal stood with three saddled horses.

Why did they choose horses when she was so very afraid of them? The Queen started to wonder if she'd ever told them about her fear but decided it didn't really matter if they knew or not. Rasheed knew she thought. He wouldn't have let them do this to me. A fresh wave of depression swamped her as she wondered if her earliest Bonded would have even cared – he had abandoned her after all.

She didn't protest as Danyal embraced her and lifted her onto the saddle. Maybe she would get lucky and fall off and break her neck and have her problems solved for her.

She was even more quiet if that was possible as they rode through the city at a walk; she hunched her shoulders and trembled as she curled in on herself as much as she could over the horse's neck hoping to hide her face. It was a pointless, futile effort. Sarina was certain there were dozens of unfriendly eyes on her, eyes that judged her, eyes that found her weak and wanting, eyes that hated her.

Come on! she urged them silently. Take your Price from me. Just leave Danyal and Ehsan alone. They had no part in my failure.

As they left the city and began riding at increasingly faster paces, Sarina couldn't help the instinct to clutch tightly at both saddle and reins despite feeling like she'd be better off falling.

There was a small part of her that had the presence of mind to be grateful that the horse she was on was willing to follow Ehsan's horse without input from her because she was incapable of giving the creature direction. There was an even smaller part of her that was enjoying the fresh desert air in her face and she could feel the wind trying to sweep away her malaise if even just temporarily. Unfortunately the weight on her heart was too much for the wind to even budge and it was a quietly weeping young woman that Ehsan helped from the saddle when they finally stopped.

Danyal lifted her chin and Sarina willed her tears to stop, feeling ashamed of her weakness.

"I have something I need to tell you, Sarina, and you, Ehsan, but I need you here to listen, not the shell she's been turning you into."

Sarina lifted her hand to the one under her chin, shifting it so she could clutch it to her face even as she held out her other hand to Ehsan, feeling a desperate need to surround herself with them both.

"I – " As she spoke for the first time in days, Sarina's voice caught and she had to swallow and cough before she could try again. "I'm…. I'll try Danyal."




 

 

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