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 Post subject: Cataclysm
View Likes PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2017 2:43 pm 

you catch more flies with honey but you catch more honeys being fly

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Pale cream walls, even more muted now thanks to the moonlight that draped over them, stretched upwards into the sky, sloping slightly to meet in an elegantly painted rotunda at the top. The triumphs and perils of the elvish race were displayed side by side as their history told in pictures spiralled upward. At the center of the rotunda - at the center of elvish history - was the Mother in all of her grace and beauty, ever-present and omniscient as deities are so want to be.

The overwhelming existence of the Oratory was too much for Siravii. The hushed subjects of the suspended fresco stared down at them with little but contempt.

“Fascinating, isn’t it?” an airy and whimsical voice spoke from his left. “The light elves have produced many a fantastic artist. That’s not even speaking to their unique architecture.”

Siravii reclined in his seat, his head rolling along the back of the chair to regard Desh Aloth. The desh was kind. Kinder a king than Siravii had ever known to exist, and certainly too kind to come to talk of turning tides in the war. “You give them too much credit, deshna.” It was almost a warning, but they both knew Siravii would never presume to give the desh an order. “Your mother was one of those fantastic artists.”

The desh hummed thoughtfully to himself and turned his attention somewhere toward the middle of the exorbitantly large round table. It was meant to be used to convene war meetings and ethics councils, so there was enough room at the table for a handful of representatives from each nation. This time there was no war meeting or ethics council to speak of; there were no humans, no dwarves, no fae - the four dark elves sat alone to bask in all of the spaciousness themselves.

“How long are they going to make us wait?” barked Paygan Naveen from a few seats down. He was a large man, and quick to temper. Siravii wasn’t fond of him, but he could appreciate why the desh appointed him as paygan; he couldn’t imagine anyone else at the head of their military. “We told them that this was urgent, and they throw us in this room to bide our time.”

Aloth was still pretending to examine imaginary dirt on the table, pointedly ignoring the protests going on around him. From between the desh and Naveen, a third low and smooth voice that reminded Siravii too much of poisoned honey spoke up. “Mind your tongue, Naveen,” Soma chastised him. “We are the ones pulling them from their beds. They know that the desh would not be here were it not emergent. Give them time.”

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 Post subject: Re: Cataclysm
View Likes PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:03 pm 

eye of newt, tail of newt... rest of newt...

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As the son of the light elf queen, Fyr was of course one of the few lucky enough to be woken up in the middle of the night to attend an extra special meeting. Fyr, generally happy with his responsibilities and duties that were far heavier than what a normal young elf of 42 could usually expect to have, didn’t much appreciate this 3 AM news.

“What’s it even about,” he grumbled at his mirror, as he hastily smoothed his unruly platinum hair. He might go straight from the bed to the meeting (and back to the bed afterwards), but he wanted to look somewhat presentable, at least. “Not peace negotiations, already, that’s for sure, they’d never come crawling for that even before a single life has been taken…”
He caught up with his mother, Seifr, and the paygan, Tïris, in the seemingly endless hallway leading to the beautiful oratory where he knew that dark elf delegations were waiting for them.

“Your hair, min,” Seifr said with a disapproving look at his locks. Fyr blushed, and wished he had a comb.

Seifr opened the large double doors leading from the hallway to the oratory; though enormous, they parted smoothly and silently at her firm push. She was the tallest woman Fyr had ever known. He was fully grown now, and still, she towered over him. The moonlight made her elegant white gown shimmer. She looked as ethereal and untouchable as the light itself; no doubt on purpose.

“Welcome, honored guests,” she said, gracefully extending both her arms as if she wanted to embrace the whole, circular room. She let her gaze fall upon the table, frowned, and then whistled deafeningly at the still open doors. Seifr turned once more to the desh and his entourage, and smiled apologetically. “I’m very sorry that no refreshments have been offered to you. I assure you, they will be here soon. No one will come to my lands and not be treated as hospitality demands.” The queen took her place, and bade Fyr and Tïris sit next to her. Seifr steepled her fingers in front of her face.

“It’s a strange time you’ve come,” she began. “Peace negotiations before even a proper declaration of war has been issued?”
No, Fyr thought. She knows that’s not it. But what else could it be? Things were tense between the two elven domains; they always had been. The only thing they could ever seem to really agree on was to stay away from the mountain range to the South, as neither civilization had ever made any attempt to colonize the fertile area at its foot for millennia. Fyr didn’t exactly know why; they were stories so old that they barely counted as history.

Two pale elves in pale, forget-me-not robes entered quietly and momentarily tore Fyr’s attention away from the meeting. A goblet with golden liquid was placed before each of the seven attendants; as were small wooden platters with each their delicate arrangement of moist bread, paper thin slices of smoked ham, and apple slices. The servants left as quickly as they’d come with a deep bow before Seifr, who nodded, and dismissed them. The double doors shut gently behind the servants, leaving the company once more in silence and soft moonlight. Fyr took a sip from his goblet. He could recognize the desh and the paygan from his mother’s descriptions, but he did not know the other two.


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 Post subject: Re: Cataclysm
View Likes PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:59 pm 

you catch more flies with honey but you catch more honeys being fly

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There had been no other indication that the two towering and elegant doors had parted, except for the movement that Siravii caught in his periphery. The desh stood elegantly and effortlessly, as if somehow he bore no weight, and clasped his hands loosely in front of him. One by one, Siravii and the desh’s advisory staff rose to their feet, and to his credit Siravii only heard the paygan make a diminutive noise of disdain in the back of his throat when the desh bowed his head in respect. His long silvering hair, a testament to the blonde he’d inherited from his mother before his age had begun to creep in on him, tumbled over his shoulders before he picked his head back up. A polite smile pulled at the corners of Aloth’s lips at her sickeningly sweet greeting, and Siravii quietly appreciated his astute grace. He’d never fancied himself part of the upper nobility, and he was quite glad for it. Forced pleasantries and fake smiles had never been at the top of his list of favorite ways to torture himself.

“You’re far too kind,” Aloth complimented, waiting patiently for their hostess and her company to be seated before he presumed to lower himself into the elegant, high-backed chair. He looked considerably at the young light elf, the spitting image of the queen herself, but didn’t let his eyes linger for too long before returning his attention directly across from him and offering an apologetic smile of his own at her assertion. “If only war were so simple.” His lips parted as if to continue, but he quickly thought better of it as the wait-staff descended upon them to lay out an elegant display of food and drink. The desh quietly thanked the servants as they presented his food, a habit that Siravii was still not used to seeing in nobility in spite of how often he’d borne witness to it back home, before nodding to the queen again in gratitude.

When all unnecessary ears had left the room once more, Aloth continued. “I appreciate your willingness to see us on such a short notice, and I feel I must apologize for the hour,” he began, clasping one hand over the other in front of him on the table. From the left, the paygan had already begun to descend upon his meal, and Siravii couldn’t say that he blamed the man. He tentatively picked up an apple slice, briefly wondering whether or not the queen would presume to poison the desh and his staff at the midnight hour, but he was hungry enough to eat it anyway. “But I do believe introductions are in order; I’ve made an addition to my staff since last we met.”

An addition; singular, because Siravii couldn’t technically be considered part of the desh’s cadre. By rights, he shouldn’t even be present in the oratory or eating potentially-poisoned apple slices. He did his best to quiet his crunching as the desh held out a hand to his left. “This is Soma,” he introduced, pointedly not telling them what exactly it was that Soma did for him. He dropped his hand to his lap, and held up his right hand to gesture to Siravii. He looked to Siravii with an intense consideration as he struggled to find the right words. A look of defeat pulled at his features as Siravii watched him decide that no, there was no good way to say what he needed to say. Finally he looked back to his hosts. “And this is Siravii Korsish,” he said at last, dropping his hand back to join the other on his lap. “A prisoner of mine, and the reason I come to you tonight.”

In spite of whether or not anyone was actually staring at him, Siravii could still feel the intensity of a thousand eyes on him. Thankfully, Soma was the first to speak up, but it was only to clarify. “An escaped prisoner.”

Siravii bit his tongue to stop himself from rebutting that he didn’t fit the ‘escaped’ criteria anymore, seeing as how he was clearly in the possession of the desh himself. Aloth smiled. “Yes, well, I’ve come to talk of diplomacy, not to argue semantics,” he dismissed in Siravii’s favor, without so much as acknowledging Soma with a turn of his head. Instead, he actually showed his advisor the back of his head in favor of looking to his prisoner. “Siravii, can you show them what you showed me?”

Cautiously, Siravii nodded, leaning down slowly to retrieve a bag that he’d rested near his feet. He questioned for a moment whether this was an appropriate time, considering that there were people - namely Naveen - eating, but he supposed that the desh wanted to get to the point before any talk of war could become hostile. He uncinched the top of his bag, reaching in and feeling around until he got a good hold on the sole object that it contained. When he was satisfied with the grip he had, he pulled it out and held it up for their hosts to see before he stood and sat it on the table.

‘It’ was a head, severed though it did not bleed. The skin was thick, pallid and marred, and there were no eyes to speak of. Instead, two pinprick holes bore into each side of the face, something that Siravii could only explain as ears. And from the earholes, the mouth began, stretching the entire width of its face into a grotesque grin. Siravii pulled the top of the head back just so, and the entire top half of its face pulled back to reveal rows of teeth. Hundreds of them, small and pointed and lethal.

“Again, I do apologize for inconveniencing you so late,” Aloth spoke after a moment, the polite smile he bore having dripped out of his expression. “But, as I’m sure you can imagine, I’m quite concerned."

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 Post subject: Re: Cataclysm
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:22 am 

eye of newt, tail of newt... rest of newt...

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Fyr’s astonishment at the presence of an escaped prisoner at the table was nothing to what he felt upon seeing the head being placed upon the table. It only just qualified as such in his eyes; devoid as it was of any resemblance to a real face. Not wanting to look too hard at the decapitated head, he instead turned his attention back to the young man, Siravii Korsish. He had felt Siravii’s eyes upon him earlier, though he couldn’t explain any possible interest in him. As the queen’s son, it was true that he was privileged with a special sort of education that could prepare him for life as a ruler, but there was no guarantee he would ever reign over the light elves. Their king or queen was elected – for life - but had to undergo annual evaluations by the people and a special council, and regicide was not unheard of in cases of perpetually unpopular monarchs.

Fyr blinked himself out of the web of thoughts he had woven. He was to pay attention to what was going on before him, not sink into revision of the light elf political system. The head grinned at him with all its teeth. There were so many it barely looked like a mouth; from his stolen glances at it, Fyr couldn’t figure out where or if the teeth ended anywhere.

“What is that?” said Seifr stiffly, staring at the head. Again, rhetorical more than anything – Fyr, too, would prefer the head to be a cruel practical joke. Seifr turned to face Aloth, a smile, too wide, frozen on her face. “Where was this found? Don’t tell me your prisoner actually faced one of these alone and lived.” Fyr could detect a note of panic in her voice that he usually associated with an evaluation taking a little too long.

If fairy tale monsters were suddenly popping up from the ground, and I were an escaped prisoner, I think I’d come running back to my cell, too, Fyr thought. Oddly, Siravii seemed the least unnerved of all of them. Maybe he was in shock. Maybe he was deliberately choosing to ignore the horrifying prospect he had brought to the table.


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 Post subject: Re: Cataclysm
PostPosted: Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:28 pm 

you catch more flies with honey but you catch more honeys being fly

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Seifr's proffered grin was on par with that of the severed head's, and Aloth returned it with an apologetic smile. "I had hoped that you might be able to tell me," he admitted on a sigh, hands worrying themselves politely on the table in front of him.

The way that the queen didn't try to hide the disbelief in her voice was only slightly irksome, and Siravii spoke immediately to his own defense. "I think you'll find that I'm quite capable." He paused at that and looked to the desh, who waved a hand for Siravii to continue. The prisoner wasn't oblivious to the whisper of a knowing smirk that tried to pull at the corner of the desh's lips; an inside joke between the two of them as if to say, 'capable indeed.' Nevertheless, the rest of his expression remained impassable while he silently beckoned a continuation.

Siravii looked back across the table.

"I was your side of the Whitewood, Your Grace," he said, not necessarily without muted accusation. The Whitewood separated Vandalia from its sister country, and it was simultaneously owned and not owned by both countries. It was a holy site that was shared by light and dark elves alike, but its vastness usually meant that the two races never met; even if they were in the same forest, they were still separated by days of walking to reach the other side. Siravii, however, had almost made it. "After I took my leave of the dungeons, I knew there would be no safe place for me in Vandalia. There was no safe place for me here, either, but I had planned to hug your side of the forest and head North. And then that thing," he paused, pointed at the head, "goes and gets me across the back. I didn't even hear it come up behind me."

Soma leaned forward in his seat, stretching to turn the head to face him. He opened the mouth again, wincing slightly when the dead weight caused the top of the head fell back abruptly to reveal those many, many teeth. Siravii continued. "Wretched, twisted thing with long talons, about as tall as I am. I turned and then it... screamed?" It was almost a question, almost an answer. "It was a horrible noise. I killed that one, but Your Grace, I heard more of those screams follow me every night until I was back out of the Whitewood."

Aloth held up a hand for Siravii to stop, and he obeyed. “You've not see anything like this in your woods?” He didn't wait for an answer; the well-contained frightened confusion was enough to answer his own question. “You're welcome to take a look at Siravii's scars for yourself, but I can assure you myself that they are very, unfortunately real. I'm sure you can understand that this… whatever it is, poses a very real, mutual threat.”

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 Post subject: Re: Cataclysm
PostPosted: Fri Apr 20, 2018 11:48 pm 

eye of newt, tail of newt... rest of newt...

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"I cannot imagine why you think I would be able to explain that. They don't exist. Of course I haven't had any like reports," Seifr answered Aloth, her smile still frozen in place. Fyr marveled at how she somehow managed to speak clearly while barely parting her lips. The light elf paygan, Tïris, leaned forward to inspect the head with interest.

"Disregarding the fact that you're allowing escaped criminals to run around freely," Seifr continued, "I will agree that solving this problem is in our mutual interest. You," she said, turning her pale eyes towards Siravii, "you say you found this near our borders, correct? Did spot anything unusual on your way here? Tracks, strange smells? Do you remember anything else of interest from your encounter with this - thing?"

Tïris had quietly gotten up and walked around the table to stand next to Soma. He opened the head once more with interest; counting the rows of teeth, very carefully placing the tip of a finger against one of them. His expression was one of morbid fascination rather than fear. Fyr had never liked him very much. Tïris was too immersed in ancient stories of war heroes for his liking, and the paygan was an outdated position anyway. Why give it to someone who saw glory rather than horror in battle? He had never gotten around to asking his mother, though Fyr suspected he could guess her reasons easily.

Averting his eyes from the uncomfortable sight of Tïgris pulling at the loose skin near the corners of the creature's mouth (revealing yet more teeth in the flesh beneath, to the surprise of no-one), he turned instead back to Siravii with renewed interest. An escaped prisoner who fought a monster and lived! It was like the beginning of an excellent story; one where he would then be charged with solving the problem he'd stumbled upon to re-earn his freedom. Fyr couldn't quite prevent a twitch at the corner of his mouth. It was too exciting a thought.

"We could - send a team of our own to investigate the scene," he suggested, opening his mouth for the first time since entering the room. He looked at Aloth with a smile that was much more genuine than his mother's. Both Seifr and Tïris' eyes shot towards him, but neither party interrupted. Fyr took this as encouragement and continued. "If you will agree to your prisoner aiding us in this, I'm sure we could discover something of value."


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 Post subject: Re: Cataclysm
View Likes PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:07 pm 

you catch more flies with honey but you catch more honeys being fly

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Siravii watched with a muted curiosity as the light elf paygan examined the severed head with morbid fascination. The man could have it for all he cared, though Soma and the desh might have some conflicting opinions about it. He didn’t care - he just knew that he was done looking at it. And so he turned his gaze away in favor of looking to the queen addressing him. “There were no tracks, Your Grace. There were no smells.” He shook his head solemnly, eyes focusing on the table politely. He only let them rest there for a second until he felt another set of eyes on him. They belonged to the prince, he realized - a gaze that was young and full of vigor, wonder, and dangerous naivety. “They did not bleed,” he spoke, hollowly. Though, he wasn’t sure if he was addressing the queen to answer her question of anything unusual, or to her son to stop his excitement before it began.

It was too late for that, unfortunately. The excitement was already there, and the boy was already speaking out of his ass about sending Siravii back in there again. The decision was not up to him - if it was, he would have never given it a second thought. However, it seemed that Soma had other ideas.

“This does require a unilateral effort. The Whitewood is holy ground; it is not just ours or yours to protect,” Soma began, putting on airs as he so often did when he was speaking on behalf of the desh - who was right there to speak for himself. Tell me that you’re not agreeing to this, Siravii pleaded in his mind. It sounds a lot like you’re agreeing to this. “A team should consist equally of individuals chosen by Desh Aloth and Queen Seifr.”

**** sake, Soma, you stupid ****.

The desh hummed thoughtfully at the idea, looking intently to Fyr. “You have your mother’s eager hand for leadership. Like a leader, then, surely you will be heading this investigative team that you’re preparing?”

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