Jagged-edged parchment lays compressed between two pieces of shark hide, bound together by a cord of the same grey hide.
Tuesday, 30 September 2014
Word was delivered concerning the request for Armor the High Queen put forth two cycles ago.
My armor was selected, along with Kenji's gauntlets and Achelle's Shield.
With it, Kenji's boots will be produced by a smith and given to each of us that put forth designs. The three of us are promised another reward from the High Queen herself. It will be the second time I've been praised and rewarded by her hand.
I will not treat this prize with such disdain as I did last time, and I certainly will not sit upon her throne as I did before.
In other news, shared my recent story with Elenoire. She seemed to like it. I haven't told a public story since the Lemonade Social at the Vanguard's guildhall. Perhaps I will do so during FallFest.
Monday, 29 September 2014
I woke to a courier delivering parchments, rather rudely, declaring my Decree of Nobility was found to be a forgery. As I deal with this mistake, I have conformed to the requirement that certain items shall not be worn, items that would denote Nobility.
It is trivial; however, I do not wish to upset the High Queen further.
Arlondale has informed me that he will soon have the designs from Viviyana for this hand that is to be crafted. I will show him how to use sand-casting, which is a more effective way to molding molten metal than wooden blocks.
Friday, 26 September 2014
I do not usually record stories, but this one has stayed with me for a few turns:
An old man, feeble and frail, walks tiredly through a quiet village. The evening 'rifter kisses lightly at his bronzed skin. His aged body hangs from the once proud bones that hold him aloft, though much closer to the ground than in years past. Supporting his bent frame is a cane, as ancient as the man himself, made of ivory yellowed from the long life. Slowly he walks, each shuffling step guiding him closer to this destiny. In the distance is a small cottage. Smoke billows from a hole in the thatched roof. As his eyes trail down the rising smoke and rest upon the oaken door, colored a deep crimson, a smile forms on his cracked lips. His gaunt form continues on, leaving long cuts in the dirt path from where his feet don't quite rise from the earth.
In the window there is a little girl watching the clouds lazily move overhead. Catching the bobbing head of the traveler, the girl quickly vanishes from the window seat and moments later appears in the doorway.
"GranDa!" She yells, waving an arm over her head. Behind her appears a much older woman, her mother, one arm cradling a large mixing bowl, the opposite hand stirring gently within. Giving a gentle nudge, the mother urges the girl forth, speaking words of love and welcome as the traveler approaches. "Da, we've been waiting for your arrival. Come, the fire is lively and bread awaits to warm your tired body."
The little girl runs to the traveler as shrill laughter bursts forth from behind golden curls. The aged man's smile seems to double in size as the sweet child stops just before him, still bubbling with joy. Lifting a hand, the weary man beckons her forth as he speaks with a hoarse voice. "Come, help your GranDa to the house." Immediately, she bolts to his side and takes his free hand in hers.
"GranDa?" The girl inquires softly.
"Yes, Little One?" The grandfather replies with a hint of joy in his tone.
"Did you bring anything special this time?" She asks in a hurry.
"Of course, Little One. I brought you a wonderful gift. Though, your mother will want to see it as well, so we should probably wait for her, yes?" His gentle tone carries over the short distance, now, between them and the cottage.
"You better believe I want to see it! Hurry along now, the sunrifter is fading quickly." Hearing his words, the mother replies with playful reprimanding.
Time passes, dinner is served, the man's body is warm and full of both food and mirth. The sweet child sits on his lap as he recounts the tales of his most recent journey. Her bright eyes wide and mouth ajar as she soaks up every word he says. Finally, the time has arrived for the gift. He sends her to his bag and has her retrieve a fold of leather from within. Bringing it over to him quickly, her steps light and full of life, she sets it on the table and waits.
"I was given this special item when your GranMa passed from this world, taken to the stars above to shine down on us." He begins softly. The young child stills, suddenly. Behind her, the mother watches with knowing eyes, a sad smile on her lips. Continuing, the man begins to unfold the leather. "Sweet one, this is for you." He pulls the last bit of leather away, revealing a single, forlorn swan feather. The mother's eyes flick to the portrait behind him before hiding from view behind pressed eyelids. "Your Da..." His voice wavers, the sadness in his tone evident. "Your Da, " He begins again, "was a brave, brave man." The child stares at the feather, tears welling in her eyes as she remains still in her place before him. "You know of the conflicts in the land, and of his service in the militia." The aged man pauses, lifting the feather and extending it to her. "My Son loved you with every fiber of his being, and as he breathed his last breath, your name was on his tongue professing his love for you once more."
The child, sullen, reaches for the feather gingerly, unable to speak and so she simply nods. Her mother comes up behind her, kneeling and slipping her arms around her, whispering words of encouragement and love into the young one's ear.
The family embraced one another, as a caring and loving family does. They continued to speak, laughter rising once more in the well-lit home. Finally, in the wee hours of the night, the last candle is extinguished, and all within fall to the peaceful slumber of a protected village. Above them, two stars seem to shine a bit brighter, casting their light over the home.
*A line is drawn here.*
That story will likely never be shared as it is so long, but there it is.
Tuesday, 23 September 2014
A lure to keep the sharks from the shoreline, to keep them from the families that played in the sands.
A lure to keep me in line and in my place as nothing.
I will not let this deter me. I will find a way to serve the Crown in a greater capacity than a mere adventurer.
I will not follow the crabmeat.
Monday, 22 September 2014
Tell a woman you'll give her anything she desires, and she'll ask for the seemingly impossible.
I bought a jar from Weslau and have begun the process of gathering sands from all of Valorn and Kilican.
The Beach south of Dundee
Midnight and Boulder Beach of Caern, my home
The Desert north of Milltown
The Eastern and Western Shores of Kilican, as well as the lava flats north of the island
The Beach around Fartown
Rocks, crushed finely, from Altitan
Soil from Verthedge Forest
I did not gather anything from Iscax. I do not know their customs on acquiring sands from their shores and taking them with me, and I would hate to cause any issue between our lands.
I think she'll enjoy this gift, though I think she'll be more happy when my hatred for Isolde fades into the darkness.
The World. Such a small gift.
Thursday, 18 September 2014
A question was posed by Brisingr at the Dragon's Ball. Something along the lines of having a treasure that you would protect, if a dragon or not I cannot recall, what would it be.
I knew the answer immediately. Starfish.
I never felt the need to protect Isolde. Even when she was taken to the Maze the first time, then again, and again, I only felt the need to comfort her. She wasn't very open to me, though. Now that I think of it, I think she had withdrawn from me, truly, long before she left so suddenly.
Regardless of that treacherous dog, I have not allowed myself to become marred and closed to the idea of protecting what I truly care for.
The shackle I wear matches hers, same word inscribed in the metal, and it is a reminder of not only my obedience and adoration towards her, but also of my willingness to protect her from all evils.
As for the party... It was lively. Cenny played his Zither and, as usual, did a remarkable job singing. He has great talent, and I look forward to any chance I have to hear him bless us with his voice. Even if I'd never say that to him face to face. A few others sang, but I didn't pay any attention to them. I wasn't involved in the party, and few seemed to notice the work I put into crafting my costume. Hopefully I can use it again for another ball, one in which Starfish will attend with me.
Tuesday, 16 September 2014
Mother birds will forage for food as their young stay protected in the nest well out of range of predators. I watched for many marcs, in silent contemplation, as the proud mother would fly from the nest high in the trees and gather food. As her wings beat heavy to keep her aloft above the nest, upon her return, the chicks within chirped loudly for the sustenance.
I thought of many things during that moment. If the Mother would vanish, would the young survive? If the Mother cannot find food, will she eat one of the young to provide for the others?
Sharks are not like birds. When the Shark is born, he will swim away from his mother, and fend for himself. Within the womb a shark will eat the smaller siblings to survive, thus ensuring only the strongest survives.
Thursday, 11 September 2014
A blade is a blade.
Zanaan, I'm unsure how, came across a Soul Leach Fang Dagger that isn't seen in the lands any longer. I paid a good price for it, but it is far superior to my old Fang Dagger.
I've been requested to assist someone with learning to Forge properly, Arlondale. I was surprised by his request, as there is the Forgemaster that could assist him. Though, if anyone were to ask, they would know my opinion on Lucius having that title. So far the results aren't bad. He is quick to learn, ready to listen and willing to do as I instruct. He'll be a fine smith in no time.
Mine. The term seems second nature now. She implores me to not speak ill of others, which isn't an issue too often. She might make a gentleman out of me, yet.
Wednesday, 10 September 2014
The Shadow's Call.
Deep into the night, a knock comes lightly against the wooden door. There is no answer from the residents within.
A marc passes by, and another knock raps lightly against the door. Yet, no answer from within.
Morning dawns, children wake, smoke rises, and men work. Rifter falls, Demon Eyes loom, and darkness sweeps o'er the lands.
A knock echoes in the dead of night. Someone stirs within.
Another knock, and a finally a light. Soon, the light is extinguished, and dawn breaks over the horizon.
Several nights pass, and each night the same soft knock comes upon the door. No one within hears it.
A howling wind speeds across the plains and causes the house to shiver and creak under it's power. A boy stirs within and slowly sits up in his bed as another gust of wind slams against the home. Startled, the boy hops out of bed and runs to his parents room to rouse them. The house shifts noticeably as another gust slams upon it.
As dawn breaks the next morn, all that was left of the home was the cornerstone it was built upon.
The Shadow called, and there was no answer.
Monday, 08 September 2014
She called me gorgeous, and with that came the topic of killing. An odd connection, yes, but an adjective that applies to me nonetheless. So I shared with her of my Six, the apathy, the concern, the guilt, and the joy in the Six. At first she didn't seem to know how to react, then finally, "...I did know that I was living closely with a predator..."
Predator. That is all I am.
Then, Hope. Something I do not personally buy into, but there it was.
"Love is not blind, love sees everything; though it does not mind."
Love eternal, it seems, is real.
Such an odd woman. It seems we both are truly insane...
Friday, 05 September 2014
She asked me if I had family.
Elizabeth, my mother.
Soci, my father.
Aphe and Zwin, my older twin brothers.
She is the first to ask about my mother and the first to dig enough to get the names of my family.
She says she worries some answers might break her heart, I can appreciate that, however I embrace knowledge and will not hide anything from her.
Thursday, 04 September 2014
The Weight of Words.
Anyone in the lands knows, or can easily find out, how I view the usage of words. They are empty shells, needing to be filled lest they blow away with the winds. Actions do well to fill them, coin, of course, was my favorite.
"...I cannot remember when I began to fall in love with you..."
Those words needed no weight, I knew them to be true. Every moment we've spent together screams it, but I find myself unable to speak them back. Is it fear? It might be. Is it the uncertainty that comes with trusting another as wholly as I trusted Isolde? It very well is.
*The last lines are heavily marked through.*
Tuesday, 02 September 2014
How many times have those two words been uttered in the last several turns? More times than I can count. Each time, they are followed with a sense of curiosity that is unbridled, and unlike any other in the land.
She will realize, one night, that she can poof away... Or perhaps she already has, and simply endures my assault. Hm.
Is it possible for every person in the lands to come, sit at Cody's feet and listen? He is not rude, overbearing with his position of authority, haughty. He is patient, kind, and willing to listen quietly to our words. He fights valiantly, leads with a level-head, and truly is worth more than many men combined. The Order was wise to select him, and would be wise to continue to utilize him.
Monday, 01 September 2014
Stray or Protege?
I was passing through the Dundee Inn several turns back, when an initiate waved to me. Being in a splendid mood, I waved back. I wasn't aware of the friendship that would be forged from that innocuous gesture.
Selene, and interesting woman, seems to refrain from large parties of people and seeks solitary comfort. She sought a safe place to hide, and I told her of the Cell in the Dark Forest and of my guild hall. Since that turn, she has spent most of her time in the Rejuvenation Springs in the hall. Cody, being the kind man that he is, welcomed her to stay as long as she wants. Though, it only came after she scared him quite well.
We spoke of professions, and it appears she desires to become a Rogue. A noble choice, indeed. I've volunteered to teach her all I know of the Master Profession, then she'll simply need to find someone to sponsor her. It will have to be a friend of mine, I'm sure, as many in the lands would balk at not training their own sponsee.