[Closed] Delirium

Gior's galdori temple city and also most populated. Home of the ruling Gioran family as well as the center of Gioran education with both the Temple and the University in the same location.
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Athrym Bruthgrave
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Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:30 pm
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: Welcome to Brunnhold. Now go home.
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Fri Jun 14, 2019 7:29 am

7th Ophus, 2719
CHURCH OF THE ETERNAL CHILD| ONLY IMAAN KNOWS
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They were running, breathless and blind in the darkness, the sounds of their footsteps echoing off cold lifeless stone and disappearing into the abyss she knew was beside them. They couldn’t see it in the dark, but they could feel it, a strange prickling sensation on their skin and a vastness pressing against their fields. From the darkness, a horrible screeching assulted their ears, the sound of something unnatural. Something angry. It morphed into a man’s desperate scream, full of pain and rage so vast that it seemed to rattle her skull.

They were running, thick black smoky tendrils curling around their feet, making it harder and harder to move. She called out to the Anaxi, looking for him behind her, but he wasn’t there. He was nowhere. The darkness glowed red, brighter and brighter, black smoke holding her in place like an ant caught in blistleberry sap. Athrym screamed, two fiery eyes staring into her very soul. She screamed as flames licked her pale skin and singed away her platinum hair. She screamed as a great mouth opened wide and the sound of the ground splitting asunder filled the void of her mind. She was burning, burning alive!


Athrym screamed, her field pulsing as she sat up suddenly, opening her summer gaze and looking around in brief confusion. Almost immediately, there was a figure by her side, a child priest nearly old enough for their Holy Pilgrimage with quartz dusted skin and silver edged robes.

Ambassador Bruthgrave, beah calm. Deeueh ay yalayhuah daahthah. Deeueh ay yalayhuahAmbassador Bruthgrave, be calm. You are safe here. You are safe. The petite Gioran stared at him for a moment, gathering her senses as dreams faded. She was in the Church Of The Eternal Child, the hospital wing of the great carved place of worship. They’d been brought directly there after exiting The Deep, the trip a blur of half memories and half imaginings. She couldn’t recall being placed in the bed, but she had visions of waking and asking for Naul.

Nauleth.

“Where is he? Where is Nauleth Siordanti?!” The woman asked sharply, pushing the covers of her bedding aside and swinging her legs over to rest bare feet on soft fur rugs. The priest made to stop her, pausing when she flexed her field in warning. Nodding his head, the boy—only a few years younger than herself—gestured to the doorway and continued the conversation in excellent Estuan.

”Most Esteemed Siordanti is in the lower half of the wing, where the Advanced healers work. He is—oh Ambassador that’s not…” Athrym ignored him, moving to stand on surprisingly weak legs. She looked down at her clothing, a pair of hospital issue white silk pajama’s, and frowned at the priest.

“Why am I dressed like this? Why am I so weak? How…how long have I been here?” She asked softly, moving with cautious steps to the doorway, turning her head left and right for a moment before following the carved markings that indicated the direction of her fiance. The young passive followed rapidly behind her, making gestures to others in the hallway to indicate they should get help.

“Yourself and the Anaxi have been here for a few days. The healers kept you sedated, for your own good. You have been…talking…in your sleep. Whatever it was you did in The Deep, you were only a few moments from possible severe backlash. You needed to rest.” Poking her head into rooms as they went, the blonde frowned and looked at the magicless being.

“And Nauleth? Is he…?” The words stuck in her throat, field drawing close for words she didn’t really want to hear. The priest shook his head and gestured onwards.

“He is alive, if that is your question, though he is not in a good way. His injuries required extensive magical assistance, but even then the healers can only work in short bursts. They had to re-open the wounds you closed, clean them and remove infection. The wound on his shoulder was already sour with infection, assumptions have been made that this may be some sort of toxin? Ambassador Bruthgrave, what happened to him?” Athrym stopped, turning to look at the priest with a hollow stare, unsure she could even find words that didn’t sound like insanity. She felt like a mad woman, long almost white hair loose and unbrushed, dark circles under her eyes and no makeup to accent her features. Wetting her dry lips, the Gioran felt her skin crawl with goosebumps as a single word escaped her.

“Hatchers.” A noise in the hallway ahead of them caught the blonde’s ear, and she turned to see a cluster of people, notably Gioran save for one.

Her clocking father.

They stood outside of a room that she could only assume was Naul’s, and with a determined scowl the petite Ambassador moved towards them.

“Athrym? What the devil are you doing out of bed girl? You should be resting.” Lord Bruthgrave said loudly, his auburn moustache twitching and his round face flushed, summer gaze stern. Sweeping through the people, Carmell came to her daughter, embracing her with un-Gioran like emotion.

“Oh thank the Eternal, you are safe my daughter.” Holding her arms out to gently push the woman away, the blonde blinked as her father approached with a stern finger in her face.

“What the clock happened down there young lady? How the bloody hell do I tell Hadrian that his son just about died in Qrieth on what should have been a safe trip.” The young Bruthgrave glared at her father, small fists balling tightly and field flaring.

“You can tell Hadrian that his son just saved your daughters clocking life. Is that good enough for your political arrangements Margol, or your wedding plans?” Not willing to wait for a reply, she shoved past the flustered Anaxi, moving towards the doorway.

“Ambassador! Ambassador thank Imaan you are okay. I was not sure if you—” The blonde turned at the familiar voice rapidly approaching her from behind, and without hesitation she drew back with her small fist and struck Professor Meakean squarely across the jaw. Her parents called out her name in shock, and the older man stumbled back from her with surprise on his features. Athrym felt her temple throbbing and her field rippled with rage.

”You left us, you coward! You left us all to die, you horrible agheysekay!abomination! Stay away from us.” A hand fell on the petite woman’s shoulder, and she spun defensively, meeting the calm and collected gaze of Lomenak Da Huane.

“Give the Ambassador some room, all of you. There will be time for questions shortly, once we have Brunnhold connected through the scrying Stone.” Turning the barefooted, confused and angry younger woman, Lomenak guided her towards the open door.

“Go to him, but know that there are a lot of questions that need to be asked. We will give you a moment.” Nodding gratefully, Athrym left behind the madness of the people lingering in the hallway, entering the white carved room and approaching the bed where Nauleth was being kept. A silken curtain was drawn around the bed, giving the man some privacy from prying eyes.

“Naul?” She called, almost scared to see what was behind the curtain.

word count: 1266
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Nauleth Siordanti
Posts: 122
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2018 12:19 am
Topics: 16
Location: Qiereth, Gior
Race: Galdor
: Magus in the Making
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Wed Jun 26, 2019 11:44 pm

7th of Ophus, 2719
CHURCH of the ETERNAL CHILD | TOO AWAKE
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For two days, Nauleth had no recollection of when one nightmare ended and the next began. Pain had dragged him away into unconsciousness where hatchers and their bloody maws waited for him, held at bay by the strange orange glow of a fiery beast, where the sharp tear of shimmering darkness called not only to him but to the very mona of his field. Pain had awakened him to the work of pale healers who moved like ghosts of his childhood memories over his injured body, their stoic faces unreadable in his confused delirium. Waking and sleeping were thus the same: full of fear, both from his past and also very much from his present.

He vaguely remembered being told there would be scars, that while whatever had attacked him—no one believed him when he repeated the word hatcher over and over again—had dug deep into his flesh but thankfully avoided further damaging the nerves of his left side. The curved teeth marks of the mythical beast he'd dismissed as a child's tale were forever etched into the freckled skin of his shoulder, deep and puckered by what he'd been told had been near-immediate infection, as if the mouth of the subterranean monster had been some perfect breeding ground for vile decay. Or, worse, that the creature's own saliva was simply poison to begin with.

He'd lost quite a bit of blood, and while Athrym's magic had been graciously cast in his favor, the Gioran doctors had been forced to start over again once he was under their care, and it had been an excruciating process. The stitches along his side and at his shoulder were tight and the bandages thoroughly binding, Living conversation use kept to an absolute minimum both because it was simply the galdori way and because Naul had a known and misunderstood sensitivity. He was told not to get up without assistance, and while he couldn't entirely be sure whether it was exhaustion or paranoia, he was somewhat afraid he was being kept sedated on purpose. He was left in the chilled room mostly buried in blankets and when he was conscious enough to speak clearly, he found himself assaulted by various high-ranking and now-familiar visitors who wanted to know what actually happened: a steady stream of back and forth interrogation that he was barely equipped for.

By the time the Anaxi professor was allowed to be awake for longer than a handful of moments at a time, there were questions asked of him that he refused to answer, desperate to make sure Athrym was safe and not quite given the most comforting of responses. He made demands and was met with more direct inquiries. It became a battle of wills and Naul simply was not physically strong enough to endure:

Was her supposed need to rest because she was injured? When had she been harmed? Why couldn't he see her?

Where was Professor Maekan to confirm their strange sightings? What had happened to the rest of their group?

No one wanted to give him any real information and so the young Siordanti played the game and fell indignantly silent. His reward? Another half day of unasked for sleep. He was sure this time his meal was drugged instead of such deep, nightmare-filled unconsciousness being his body's actual decision at this moment, haunted as it was.

Groggy and disoriented, he was quite sure something strange was at play the next time he woke, he'd asked for his notebooks. For a pen. To sit up. For something to eat. He'd attempted to play the good patient, gritting his teeth through the pain and pretending not to be embarrassed when a passive nurse assisted him in relieving himself as if he was an invalid. He struggled to concentrate on his notes, mind foggy, longing to hear news of his fiancé.

Finally, just as he'd littered the floor with yet another crumpled sheet of paper, the sounds of commotion rang out against the carved stone of the hallway he was sure outside of his door, which was left open as if to taunt him with freedom or to remind him he was a prisoner. From behind the curtain, he saw nothing, but he heard the only voice he wanted to hear:

"Athrym!" He shifted, the motion clumsy with only full use of one arm and how tightly bound his side was in some unspoken effort to keep him still. His notebook slipped to the floor and it was all he could do to keep from losing his pencil, a few pieces of loose paper whispering over fabric as he struggled to sit up more, "Oh, thank Alioe you're alright—no one would let me—"

Naul waved his good hand and all but begged her close should she peer through the curtain at his pale, haggard face. While he'd slept far too much, it was impossible to tell on his freckled features, unshaven and unkempt. A robe had at least been draped over him for warmth and modesty, but really he felt underdressed for the chill beneath the mountain here in the Church of the Eternal Child the Gioran's so ambitiously named their hospital.

There were tears burning at the edges of his gold-rimmed gaze, the Anaxi professor not giving a godsbedamned care in all of Vita how he wore his emotions in this Kingdom at this moment, and regardless of how much physical pain the motion required once she was close enough to embrace, he whined and hissed his injured body into submission when he hugged her with a desperate but trembling strength, whispering fiercely into her hair, "—I don't understand what's going on. No one would tell me where you were—why?"

He sobbed a long, slow inhale, clearly shaken and obviously afraid that someone may have chosen to follow his petite fiancé and escort her from the room at any moment for even the slightest misunderstood offense,

"Nobody believes me. Believes us."
This isn't Brunnhold anymore, ersehat, and you're not going home.
word count: 1081
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Athrym Bruthgrave
Posts: 91
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:30 pm
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: Welcome to Brunnhold. Now go home.
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Sat Jun 29, 2019 10:30 am

7th Ophus, 2719
CHURCH OF THE ETERNAL CHILD| ONLY IMAAN KNOWS
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Drawing aside the curtain with a cautious frown at the sound of his voice, Athrym felt hot tears burn her eyes as she stood looking at him. His face was haggard, dark circles under gold rimmed eyes and facial hair grown in where it was usually clean. With a sound that could have been a sob, the pale Gioran all but ran to Nauleth’s side, throwing her arms around his neck regardless of injury or inventory. He trembled, and she felt it against her petite form as he moved to hug her back with sounds of clear pain, deliriously trying not to break down into the curve of his robe-draped shoulder.

“I don’t know Naul, I don’t know! They’ve kept us both sedated, for fear we have gone mad. But we haven’t, I know we haven’t.” Drawing back, she looked over his face, running her hands over his cheeks and towards the bandages on his shoulder with a wince and a sharp inhale. The tears so freely flowing for the Anaxi were too much, and she wiped his face with her thumbs, not ignorant to the irony as her own tears rolled down her cheeks.

“They wouldn’t tell me where you were, or if you were even alive. And Gods, there was so much blood, I thought…I felt…I…” Shaking her head, the blonde couldn’t finish her words, instead looking back at the doorway that Lomenak had been kind enough to hold the masses behind for a moment, before looking firmly back at Naul.

“Meakan is here, and my parents, and Lomenak and a whole bunch of officials. Something about a scrystone. Brunnhold. I don’t know what…” Searching his face, the young woman desperately looked for excuses, things that would explain away what they’d seen and heard and felt.

“They have to believe us now. Meakan can verify our story. They have they…” Her eyes were unfocused, vivid flashes of the Deep springing to mind, before she looked at him again.

“Hatchers. We were attacked by hatchers. Under Qrieth.” The words sounded ridiculous out loud, like some fantastical story made up by a writer working the midnight oil. But it was real, and it was terrifying.

“Athrym. Nauleth. We’ve got Brunnhold on the stone. It’s time.”[/color] Lomenak said in an authoritative but gentle tone, announcing without words that it was time to tell what had indeed happened in the Deep. The Gioran looked back at her Patriarch, not even attempting to reign back her emotions like the good countrywoman she was meant to be. Instead, she collected the red heads book and papers, putting them neatly on his lap and curling her fingers around his hand tightly. Her field was weak, weary, but still she bolstered it with a defiant twitch of her jaw.

They filed in one by one, those who had been summoned for this event. From beyond the hospital, at the doors of the Church, the Quartz Guardians stood firm to stop any others from entering. A small crowd had gathered, curious and demanding in their fields. Everyone knew that something had gone wrong in the Deep. Everyone had seen the Anaxi bleeding as he was carried through the streets and the Ambassador drenched with the red of his life force. There were rumors already; a lovers tiff gone horrendously wrong, a wild cave kleiw living off the blind rats that could stand the depths, a bizarre ritual in the Deep to summon Aminark’s soul itself.

Everyone had a theory, and no one had the right one.

Lomenak entered first, seating herself at the end of the bed, her pale rose eyes shifting from Athrym to Naul and back again the perfect picture of stoic control. Next was one of her kin, carrying a crystallized ball that swirled with smoky haze that occasionally shifted to show an out of focus freckled face and dark brown hair. Lord Bruthgrave and Carmell next, followed by Illustrious Peak and finally Meakan and the High Priest of Imaan. There was only seating for the Da Huane leader, and so everyone else stood uncomfortably in the suddenly too small room, looking at the couple like bugs under a microscope.

“I know you must be very confused, and very upset right now, but please understand we are concerned about the events in the Deep and what possible risk this causes to Qrieth. I have already had a stone seal put on the entrance, and no being may enter or exit without my personal verbal consent.” The woman began, sitting straight backed as she addressed the two younger galdori, her tone even and calm. Pausing for a moment, Lomenak gave them a chance to speak, should either of them need to take it, before nodding.

“Now, tell us, what happened in the Deep?” Athrym looked at the faces that stared at them, the one in the ball so very far from Gior, before looking at Naul again.

“We uh…we encroached beyond the First Archive and made it to the Maw. There is a pathway that goes deeper, much deeper. At the end there was a passage, and a crypt. We found bodies there, laid out on stone alters. And a…a door.” Her lip trembled, frayed field drawing around herself and her fiance with a protective movement, holding his hand tighter.

“There was a body before it. It was, it wasn’t old like the others. There…um…there was a book. Braeth…I…” The galdor’s green gaze migrated to Meakan, brow drawing and face darkening.

“You took the book. You told us to open the door, you cowardly turntail. It was your fault. This was your fault.” Athrym growled, furious rage throbbing at her temple as she glared at the Professor. Lomenak held up a hand, halting any rebuke from the elder man before he could begin.

“We will get to the book. Tell us about the doors. What did you find?” Wetting her lips, the pale creature tried to say the word, stuttering on the first letter as she almost whispered it to the Da Huane.

“H-Hatchers.” Immediately, the people in the room began to talk, her father the loudest.

“Preposterous! There’s no such thing. It’s a bedtime story for naughty children, a myth. Clearly, it was dark and the child was afraid and her mind has made up a creature to explain the attack. I need to get her to Anaxas where she can be properly cared for.” The Ambassador held Naul’s hand tighter, almost cowering back against her fathers words, as if his strength of doubt was planting seeds of doubt in her own mind.

Had they really seen what they thought they saw, or was it some sort of hallucination thanks to the depths they had travelled.

“Yes we have heard your request Mister Bruthgrave, now be quiet lest I remove you from the Church.” Her pale gaze flicked to Nauleth, prompting him to continue the story.

“What else did you see in there, beside hatchers? I want to know everything.”

word count: 1228
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Nauleth Siordanti
Posts: 122
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2018 12:19 am
Topics: 16
Location: Qiereth, Gior
Race: Galdor
: Magus in the Making
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Thu Jul 04, 2019 12:19 am

7th of Yaris, 2719
CHURCH of the ETERNAL CHILD | TOO AWAKE

There were voices in the hall and Naul wanted nothing more than to shut them out. He didn't need to repeat himself for the millionth time—he'd described everything he could remember over and over already. Or at least he felt as though he had—perhaps he'd just dreamed it all multiple times in and out of consciousness beneath the work of doctors and the watchful eye of whoever had been making sure he'd been isolated. Athrym was careful in her embrace, cautious of his injuries, but he ignored what stung and ached while he reached to hug her tightly. When she pulled away to look at him, his expression darkened at the admission that sedatives had kept them quiet. He was still horrified by the truth but also insulted that no one even tried to believe them—what reason would any of them have to concoct a story so incredulous and fantastical?

Oxygen deprivation surely did occasionally lead to hallucinations, but his injuries? The loss of some of their party? No—

The pale Gioran wiped his face while he spoke softly, self-conscious of all the emotions shared between them because he knew they were in her home Kingdom and there would be judgment. He swallowed—hard—at her admission that she feared for his life, but only because the Anaxi professor had been worried about hers as well.

"All of them? Begads, I'm not ready—I—" Nauleth was hardly dressed, let alone cognizant enough to navigate the barrage of inquiries he knew would be tossed at them both. He wasn't sure he could be strong enough for the both of them together, here in little more than nightclothes, "—Brunnhold? Wait. What for? No one needs to know what's going on until there has been more studying. We need to go back down there. I need to go back down there. I have to go back—I have ideas on how to—"

The young Siordanti struggled to sit up a little further, hissing and wincing as his side objected to the movement, squeezing his eyes shut with a gasp for air at the pain. He sighed, unable to use the shoulder that had been mauled for much support, and just attempted to settle closer to his pale, petite fiancé instead, better hand reaching to cover hers with his and curl his fingers tightly around all of hers, "—Professor Meakan surely saw something—the clocking coward—but those were definitely Hatch—"

He bit his lip, glancing past Athrym's shoulder to meet the gaze of Lomenak Da Huane while the graceful creature swept into the room with her companions. It wasn't necessarily a respectful silence, Naul drawing his field closer but also tighter together with the woman beside him, not mingling in private intimacy so much as weaving in solid support.

"There was no reason to contact Brunnhold. It's too soon, Your Luminous. If you were at all actually concerned for our well-being, you'd have given us time to recover without the use of sedative-induced silence." The Physical Conversationalist glowered, his tone bordering on groggy defiance. He wanted to make sure those on the other end of the Seerstone heard his words and so he spoke them with exaggerated volume.

He let his gold-rimmed gaze wander the faces of those who filed into his room, who crowded around them without even offering them a moment to gather themselves or have a meal or anything. He was already disturbed and this would most likely push him over the edge into anger, especially once he let his eyes linger on Professor Meakan. Everyone else's fields brushed against his and Naul resisted the nauseated overwhelming sensation it all caused, unable to help but feel the weight of their expectation and curiosity filtering through their monic form of unspoken communication. He looked at the large crystal, a far larger Seerstone than any average galdor would carry in their pockets, and recognized the brief flashes of at least Headmistress Ophelia and possibly Professor Moore on the other end—

The monic theorist? Interesting.

His jaw clenched at the obvious question, about to speak but Athrym began to describe things first. Whether it was as a kindness to him or because the memories of such a strange experience were gnawing at her from the inside out as much as they were gnawing at him, he couldn't tell, but he listened to her description and nodded,

"The body was in front of the door and it had obviously been injured. I was too far away to study details, but it was not in the same condition as the mummified remains on the altars." The young Siordanti added the details, not interrupting so much as finding a space to add his voice into, "There was very old Monite and engravings. Engravings of—oh—"

The petite blonde next to him mentioned the book Maekan had taken off with and mentioned Braeth, the eldest Siordanti feeling the shift in her field. He tangled their fingers together and squeezed her hand as if to quiet her, as if to tell her the professor wasn't worth going after here in front of everyone. Perhaps he was a coward, but he'd also gotten them help.

She said the word hatchers and the whole room erupted. From the stone, Professor Moore and Headmistress Servalis' voices could barely be heard:

"Please don't yell. The strain from this distance."

"What did Miss Bruthgrave say? Hatchers?"

Athrym's father spoke up and Nauleth bristled visibly, face twisting in frustration, right side before the left, "You'll take her nowhere she doesn't wish to go, Sir Bruthgrave." It was a possessive warning, the Physical Professor's field sigiled and buzzing with what threat he could muster for a man he'd admittedly never met before this moment, a man who had arranged a marriage in secret that became an unexpected mutual engagement long before the truth was even discovered. He sighed, rolling his eyes as he talked about hatchers being old stories—he'd believed that, too, just days ago—but he didn't believe that now.

"We've hardly heard a thing." Ophelia's voice snapped from the stone, sounding crystalline and sharp.

The ginger galdor groaned more than sighed, hissing through grit teeth as he raised his hand despite the strain of stitches in the flesh of his shoulder, "Enough then! If you want to know everything, then you clocking well better listen and stop arguing. Were you there in the Maw? No, no you weren't. Professor Meakan was—but his silence is his problem. I know he saw what we did, all the same. Anyway, we've got no reason to lie and none of us were suffering from oxygen deprivation, so here—ah, clock the Circle, my notebooks—there was ancient monite on the burial stones as well as engravings, engravings of hatchers—I need my notebooks—I took notes and rubbings—there—could someone—could you just—"

Wincing, leaning as if he wanted to get up, he instead pointed to his belongings piled on a small stone desk carved out of the wall, looking to Illustrious Peak because he knew her and purposefully ignoring Professor Meakan. Perhaps it was just simply easier to address a passive with such sudden impatience, "My notebooks—there—can you get them? Please?"

Even if she didn't, he continued, visibly irritated and obviously full of far more thoughts than he was capable of putting into words, "The doors shouldn't have been opened until the body was properly examined. We all advised against it, but, again, there was no interest in heeding our caution. Once opened, there was mist or steam or something that curled out of it. Perhaps there is an underground water source? Well, we didn't hear anything that I can remember, but there was a curious sensation. Even before the door was opened—Professor Moore? I've only hold rumors about your research, but as we drew closer to the doors, it felt as though something, somewhere was attempting to pull at the mona in our fields. It was magnetic almost—"

"A pulling sensation? Was it strong?" Harper's voice was almost metallic given the distance between them and the images of the two Brunnhold galdori flickered across the face of the crystal.

Ophelia's voice murmured in the background but it was impossible to make out her words.

"Yes. Well. Not at first. It was hard to cast—once things unraveled—but I think—wait. Let me not get distracted." Nauleth ran a shaking hand through unkempt hair, biting his lip at the pain of the motion, "There was mist once the doors were opened and while I cautioned others not to go inside because it was so incredibly dark, no one listened to the male Anaxi professor." He let that hang there, not looking up, and didn't miss a beat continuing, "Something shimmered in the room. It was strange—"

"Shimmered? Like sun on water? Like gemstones in bright light?"

"Yes. Only it was solid black. A nothingness. The pull was so strong—but then—"

"Was the shimmering darkness large?"

"N-no, Sir Moore, it was perhaps the size of a rickshaw. I didn't get a good look at it because there were—there was—they came!—there were definitely hatchers. Braeth speared one. We ran. A wall was barely enough to keep them back and there were too many after I tried to shove them away, into the Maw. It attacked me. I was only trying to keep Athrym safe—all of us safe—there were too many and they moved like ants. Together. But, something happened—the Maw was filled with light, with fire—bright and blinding—"

"The Maw's a volcano? How many hatchers were there? Mister Siordanti—"

Nauleth had stopped talking, staring at the seerstone blankly, tears burning the edges of his vision and shaking. Memories of the great mythical beast rising from the seemingly endless void of the Maw flooding his senses, coupled with memories of searing pain. His breathing sped up, his face contorting into some mix of terror and frustration as if he struggled to believe the very things spilling from his lips. He spoke them with a measured rhythm, the cadence of his voice almost deadpan, sea glass-colored eyes glazed over with the memory of every scene playing over and over again in the depths of this thoughts.

"There were too many hatchers to count. I—my magic wasn't enough—our magic seemed far less responsive so close to them—we should have died—Daegerote. The whole Maw was filled with fire. Filled with the mythical beast and it kept them at bay."

"Dae-what? How is that even possible? Hatchers haven't been seen in decades, centuries; if they are even real at all. Did you not just discover new wildlife?" It was Headmistress Servalis' voice through the stone, but she was halted by Harper Moore. The two began to bicker in hushed tones that couldn't be understood given their tenuous magical connection. The young professor gasped for breath, not aware he'd been holding it. He spoke louder than necessary, desperate to be heard above the din of many voices,

Slowly, he looked up toward Professor Maekan, "Tell them about the creatures that attacked us! Tell them the truth. And someone give me my godsbedamned notebooks. I have drawings and notes. The rubbings. The Monite. Over there—look for yourselves. We're not mad."
This isn't Brunnhold anymore, ersehat, and you're not going home.
word count: 2008
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Athrym Bruthgrave
Posts: 91
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:30 pm
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: Welcome to Brunnhold. Now go home.
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Tue Jul 09, 2019 7:31 pm

7th Ophus, 2719
CHURCH OF THE ETERNAL CHILD| ONLY IMAAN KNOWS
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Athrym shushed the Professor, holding her hands on him to keep the injured and mildly delusional man in place, shaking her head firmly.

“We are never going down there ever again.” She whispered ferverantly, breath hitching at the sight of her fiancé grimacing in pain, wishing there was something to help him. As Lomenak and the others entered, she drew her attention to the Da Huane, weaving her field inbetween Naul’s like fingers lacing together. The blonde looked at the swirling seerstone before looking back to the red head. His tone was disrespectful and accusing, but the petite Gioran made no move to correct him, her trust in her own people heavily shaken.

He was right. She should be furious at their treatment, demand Brunnhold exercise their right to pull their kinsman back to Anaxas. Something bubbled inside her chest, temple throbbing with rage that grew from the inside out. Her field felt assulted by the galdori in the room, her skin crawled with the need for space. She readied herself to say something, but then Lomenak spoke and she found herself answering questions in an almost robotic obedience.

As Naul bolstered her tale, Athrym nodded, eyes widening as she tried to press on, fury at the corwardly old professor flushing through her core. At the word Hatchers, there was more noise then they needed, and her father’s voice overshadowed the lot. A mash of Gioran and Estuan filled the room, Lomenak trying to placate the situation. The blonde Ambassador looked at the floor, tired and confused and frustrated.

”You'll take her nowhere she doesn't wish to go, Sir Bruthgrave."

Athrym looked up, feeling the flare of Nauleth’s field as it cracked with the Physical element he so strongly worked with, pulsing with warning at her red faced father. The Anaxi stammered words of shock at being spoken to so rudely, his own field jittering and flustered. Carmell moved, silent but strategic, to put herself between Margol and Lomenak with a small bow of apology.

Once an Anaxi, always an Anaxi.

It was Ophelia’s sharp, suddenly clear voice that stopped the madness, Lomenak breathing a soft sound that may have been gratitude. All eyes turned on the red haired man as he hissed in pain, Athrym blinking back tears that stung her eyes. There was no stoic emotionless quartz statue here, just a young woman trying to piece together what couldn’t have possibly happened.

Except that it did.

Thank Imaan for Naul. Even in his state, the Anaxi still took charge, his tone harsh and short. Each word he said, the Gioran nodded, the memories burned into her mind. Notes! Of course. As the taller man went to move, Athrym pressed her hand on his good shoulder.

“Just…sit back.” She said quietly, the sound of his pain digging into her chest and stirring her own anger at the whole clocking thing. Her summer gaze turned to Illustrious Peak when Naul demanded her help, flicking to Lomenak almost defiantly. Her Matriarch didn’t say a word, though her displeasure at a foreign man addressing the passive so curtly was thick in her field. To her credit, the child priest smiled softly, placing a hand on the older woman’s shoulder and nodding her head.

Aghah huhaey eyze times euhu pain, Eeu.We forgive in times of pain, Mother. The young girl said quietly, though Carmell had reached for the notes before Illustrious Peak could move further. As she approached the bed, the tall pale woman looked at Athrym.

“Leash your pet, daughter. He might be your fiancé, he might be injured, but he is still in Qrieth and will treat our people with respect. Even your father understands that.” Her voice was even, almost monotone, a quiet admonishment compared to Margol. The blonde narrowed her eyes, taking the paperwork with a frown, leaning away when the woman tried to brush a lock of hair from her face.

“Respect is earned, Mother, not just given. Right now, I haven’t seen anything in Qrieth that has earned his respect, or frankly mine.” Purposefully, she turned her head, a figurative turning of her back on the woman she called Mother. Carmell, to her credit, allowed a slight flush of pink touch her cheeks, though it was more out of embarrassment in front of her Matriarch than it was out of any contrariety at her daughters words. As Naul spoke, Athrym nodded.

“Mist. It was mist, not steam. It wasn’t hot.” She added, her formal way of speaking dropped, contractions abundant in her words. Carmell stood beside Lomenak, her displeasure starting to show on her features. As Moore’s name was mentioned, the room turned towards the ball, everyone now focused on the conversation between the two Anaxi.

“We could barely cast, Professor. It was like having your field dragged away from you, and there was…it was horrible.” Even the thought brought goosebumps to her skin, shivering against the recalled feeling of powerlessness. Nauleth continued, his words becoming disjointed and mixed between an explanation and a horrified recalling, bringing tears to her own eyes again. It was the same tale, from different angles, but the story was the same. The hatchers, Braeth’s death, running—Gods they had to run—the magic and the…

“Daegerote, he said the clocking Daegerote. It’s not a fucking volcano, it’s a Circle-be-damned beast! Do you hear? It was…it…” She nodded fervently and looked back at Naul as his voice rose above the din of the conversation. Silence fell again, all eyes on Professor Meakan as he stood there quietly, avoiding becoming part of the conversation.

“We’re not mad. We’re not.” The Gioran growled, the words sounding too loud in the sudden lack of sound. Lomenak looked at Meakan, her hand beckoning the older Gioran.

“Speak, Most Revered Meakan.” The Matriarch Da Huane said quietly. The professor wet his lips, unable to hide the nervousness that wracked his field. He cleared his throat.

“I uh…we entered a place of burial. A…crypt. It housed a…I do not know the term. I think a father? A…” He stumbled over his Estuan, quickly speaking to Lomenak in Gioran.

“A Patriach? You think it was the Patriach of Aminark Giore?” Meakan nodded, continuing his broken speech.

“The doors were closed, and a body was there. I took…I took the book to study it. It made sense to expand the doors. We could go no further. Inside, I saw the…” He waved his hand, to indicate the shimmer, looking quickly at Naul and Ath before looking away.

“I could not cast. I was preparing to take notes when…there was a sound. Animal sound. But I…” Lifting his chin, the man shook his head.

“I did not see hatchers. Or mythic beasts.” The cry of incredulous disbelief left Athrym’s lips before he finished his sentance.

“You liar!” She shouted through tears, springing from Naul’s bedside and closing on the man with clenched fists and a pulsing of red-shift through her aura. Her temple throbbed as the taller elder backed away from her, whilst Lomenak stood, holding the younger Gioran by her shoulders.

“Athrym Bruthgrave, be seated.” The Matriach said sharply, her field bolstering and the press of Gravity pushing the weaker galdor back and onto the bed. Athrym’s summer gaze looked at the woman with anguish.

“He’s lying Most Honored, he’s lying. He saw…he heard…he…he left us.” Meakan shook his head.

“It is true. I am…scared whice. I ran. But is true, no lies. I did not see hatchers or beast. I am sorry.” He looked helplessly at Lomenak, and the ball, before letting his pale gaze drop to the floor. The Matriarch looked at the seerstone with a slight nod, before gesturing to the two galdori.

“May I have the notebooks?” She asked quietly, taking them if they were handed over, and flicking through them slowly. From the stone, the signal wavered, and the Da Huane holding it muttered an incantation to strengthen its connection. It was silent as the older woman searched through the book, her fingers running over the rubbing Nauleth had taken. Finally she looked up.

“We need time to review this, and the book Meakan took. Most Honored Servalis, I believe this requires further conversation and analysis before we share the contents.” It was a dismissal, a polite political move. This was Gioran soil, and Lomenak would take this up with her family first.

Before handing it to Anaxas.

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Nauleth Siordanti
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: Magus in the Making
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Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:08 pm

7th of Yaris, 2719
CHURCH of the ETERNAL CHILD | TOO AWAKE

Too much was going on and it was too overwhelming for the young Siordanti who'd hardly been conscious over the past few days, let alone had time to process everything that had really happened. The stoic, stern countenances of the Giorans that had entered the room made Nauleth exceedingly uncomfortable and the press of their fields agitated him even as he attempted to focus on the large scry stone, desperate to take some kind of comfort in the familiar.

They could barely hear each other, so great was the distance and so limited was their current understanding of magic, and he couldn't help but feel more isolated than comforted by this sudden realization. There were no promises here so far from his homeland and there was no guarantee for his protection, politically at least. His wounds had been treated, but it was clear no one here at all respected his intellectual position as a professor or as a scientist. Had he not been so exhausted, had he not been in so much pain, he would have been angry.

As it was, he had very little room for anger.

Or, so he thought.

He understood the quiet words of the young passive, her calm demeanor reminding him of his social mistake. It was hard to tell whether he winced in pain or chagrin, but at Carmell's sharp words, Nauleth's attention was dragged from Illustrious Peak to the woman who was to be his mother-in-law, opening his mouth as if to object to being called anyone's pet, as if to make the very true announcement that he'd yet to feel respected since he returned from the Maw. His mouth felt dry, tongue thick and slow, heart racing against a chest that was sore and tight with stitches. His fiancée spoke for him, and he couldn't argue, whining instead when he leaned back again.

Professor Moore and Headmistress Servalis were clearly desperate for answers and seemed to genuinely be concerned for his well-being. Harper actually sounded as though he knew more than he wanted to let on, but they were all too far away to do anything.

"Barely cast—oh, gods. Ophelia, this was just like I was saying about the Rift, and—"

"Harper, please. This is hardly the time for your theories without more evidence. Professor Siordanti—Nauleth—did anyone else cast besides yourself and Miss Bruthgrave?"

"N-no. Braeth had a spear and stabbed one of the beasts—one of the Hatchers becausee that's exactly what they clocking were—and then all hell broke loose, Headmistress. Listen, I need you to get in touch with my father—please—"

He reached for the notes that had been almost reluctantly handed to Athrym, shuffling through his measurements and equations, making note of the temperature changes, leaning toward the seerstone again, "The temperature did fluctuate near the doors, not significantly high enough to make steam, but warmer enough to be noticed. It was like the way a ramscott field can alter the air composition in proximity to the galdor."

He continued, aware of the attention placed on him while he told their story, but unprepared for the disbelief it would all unravel into. Conversation erupted just like an actual volcano at the mention of Daegerote's name and the Anaxi wilted a little. All of the conflict wore on the young red-head who was not used to his opinion being question or his sanity left undetermined or his word not taken as authoritative among those he should have been considering as peers. Here in Gior as a foreign man, he already had far too much to prove, but now? With this sort of story to prove? He groaned.

His eyes narrowed as Professor Maekan spoke as if to warn him not to lie. He nodded when the older man admitted that he struggled to cast as well, but frowning once the man faltered and looked away, one side of his face wilting into a scowl before the other. His expression darkened further at the denials,

"You did see them! The Hatchers were right there in both rooms before you fled!" He spoke up with the pale creature next to him, but then Lomenak stepped into interrupt them all and Nauleth's chapped lips curled in his frustration. He turned back to flipping through his notes until he came to the rubbings he'd taken off the stones the mummified remains had been laying on. His hands were shaking and his pulse was racing. He held up the hastily-made reproductions, the silhouette of the beast that had tried to kill him very clear on the page,

"It was a hatcher. Look. That attacked us. Attacked me. Then there were more. Uncountable numbers, and when the wolf-shaped fire rose from within the depths of the Maw, they were quelled in its presence." Naul's fingers traced beneath the streamlined, leaping figure, over the old Estuan words beneath that he'd not had time to read, labeling the creature for what it was. He then flipped a few pages to the monite he'd so quickly scribbled down, so much of it so ancient he wasn't even sure he could translate the words without the help of Professor Moore. He pointed the page toward the seerstone,

"This page, Harper. I need you to work on the Monic translation because I don't recognize any of these spellforms. That might be a leybridge. It looks like warding spells but I'm not at all close to even elementary in my Clairvoyance studies."

"Hold it there, Nauleth—" Which he did, though the effort of holding his arm up caused him to sob and shift, needing his other arm to support it. When the Matriarch stepped forward for his notes, the ginger looked up without thinking twice, assuming she wanted a closer view of what he was presenting to the monic theorist. He had not intended to hand over the notebook to the Da Huane to keep, and yet she slipped it so easily from his weak fingers that he blinked,

"N-no. You can't keep them. Those are my intellectual property and I would like to review them as part of my research before you scurry them off to some archive to bury like all those bodies in the Deep. You can't just take everything—"

"I'd like to hear more about what you believe to have been the Hatchers and Daegerote, please." Professor Moore's voice sounded metallic and distant, fading in the vastness of Vita between them both. It was clear he couldn't entirely see or hear what was happening, their connection via Clairvoyant magic so tenuous from this far away.

"Yes, there have been so few recorded sightings that any evidence to their existence needs to be fully explored and I—what—what is happening now?"

"Headmistress Servalis, please explain to my Honorable Gioran sponsors about intellectual property and my status as an Anaxi representative of Brunnhold outside of politics and in the spirit of educational equality." His eyes snapped up from the crystal to Lomenak with obvious challenge, sea glass-colored gaze hardening like stone, "I just put my life on the line for your citizens and for those notes and there is no clocking way you're going to go through them until I'm finished. I don't care what you think of me or my kingdom, but you will respect the danger I survived whether your believe in hatchers or mythic beasts—I didn't, I sure as the Circle do now."

With a growl of pain and a whimper of barely contained weakness, Nauleth sat up again, lifting his good hand out for his notebook. As much as he wanted to see the book that Meakan had retrieved, he would settle for what was inarguably his,

"If you would like to work together on the analysis of my findings, I'm more than happy to come alongside one of your people. I've heard, Most Honored One, that one of your own children happens to be in my field of study." The redhead gurgled his last words, feeling the strain of stitches as he willed himself to sit up further, to hold steady, to demand with the kind of boldness he'd been told that these stoic mountain people respected,

"But you can't just take things because you think you have the Kingdom right to do so—not while my Anaxas holds the Symvouli Seat—I won't stand for it, ruling family of Gior or not."
This isn't Brunnhold anymore, ersehat, and you're not going home.
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Athrym Bruthgrave
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Mon Jul 29, 2019 6:11 pm

7th Ophus, 2719
CHURCH OF THE ETERNAL CHILD| ONLY IMAAN KNOWS
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L​​omenak glanced at him, a subtle cursory thing that barely lingered, like the look one gives a petchulant child throwing an all out tantrum on the market place floor. Quartz gaze ignoring his outstretched hand, it landed back on the sketches, face calm but field thick and heavy. Whilst Naul’s aura crackled with the electricity of his Physical speciality, hers was like being crushed under an uncomfortably heavy blanket, ramscott with the power to carve literal buildings into mountain rock. Athrym hadn’t felt threatened before in her home, by her own people, but right now she felt it. There was a slant to the Da Huane’s field, a definite display of aggressiveness, and for the first time in her life the young woman found herself considering the nature of her people. Bloody civil wars marked the changing of leading families, and passives were forced to exile where they most likely died slow and lonely deaths. Her own weakened field drew closer, mingling to encompass her fiancé as her mind raced.
​​
​​This was not at all how she had imagined this day. Or anyday since returning to Qrieth.
​​
​​Tension was palatable in the tiny hospital room, each of the other people there uncomfortably looking away. That is, save for Carmell, who was unable to hide the icy cold stare she levelled at the Anaxi. From the scrystone, Nauleth’s Brunnholdian peers were talking, asking questions and trying to see the situation through the poor connection. Seconds went by, though they felt like houses, before Lomenak finally closed the notebook.
​​
​​ “And yet, you only do so for one more year.” The older woman spoke calmly, her face unchanged and her tone even, though the heavy press in her field had shifted to a cautious curiosity when Nauleth changed tact from demanding rudeness to straightforward boldness. She was the Matriarch of an entire Kingdom, a player in world politics, being vaguely threatened by a nothing professor from Anaxas.
​​
​​ “I do not envy the trivial tantrums of huaheyhazeforeigners, Mister Siordanti. It must be hard, especially when you are representing your country on such an intimate level. In Gior, we do not let emotions dictate us, but I suppose if you are to be believed the trauma of your experience should be taken into account for your behaviour.” Looking up at the young man and the Ambassador, Lomenak handed the book over.
​​
​​ “You are correct however, Kaelum does have a interest in these things. Someone get my son. He is to be tasked with accompanying this book, no matter where it may be.” Turning to the scrystone, the older Da Huane focused on the hazy face of the Headmistress.
​​
​​ “Most Honored Matriarch Servalis. Until we are able to truly understand what has occurred here, Mister Siordanti, his notebook and Ambassador Bruthgrave are to remain in Qrieth under diplomatic confinement. We cannot risk mass hysteria, nor can we let them leave until we can fully understand what is in The Deep. I am sure Anaxas can understand the delicate nature of this situation, and support our decision.” Ophelia steepled her fingers, a long pause hanging in the air as she considered the other woman’s words.
​​
​​ ”Most Reveared Matriarch Da Huane. Anaxas would send a contingent to support your research and any further forays into the Deep should you pursue them.” Her eyes flicked to Naul, then back again.
​​
​​ “We could even exchange—“ Lomenak held up a hand.
​​
​​ “My humblest regrets, but we will be closing Qrieth to any visitors until this is resolved. You will have to scry with Mister Siordanti should you wish to assist.” The Headmistress smiled, a thin thing that was full of unspoken words.
​​
​​ “Lomenak, what you are suggesting is an act of diplomatic imprisonment.” The statuesque woman barely flinched.
​​
​​ “And if you send foreigners to Qrieth, we will consider it an act of aggression.” Athrym’s heart beat heavily in her chest, eyes widening and hand holding Nauleth’s tightly. From the scrystone, both the Brunnholdians had begun speaking, but with a wave of her fingers Lomenak cut the connection. Her pale rose tinted eyes turned back to fixate on Naul, speaking quietly in Gioran to the room. It was one simple word, a command to leave, and like that it was just the Matriarch, Naul and Athrym.
​​
​​ “Do not mistake me sedaeyardythchildren, I have no desire to harm you or start a war with Anaxas, but you must understand the delicate nature of this situation. You have been dragged bloodied and hysterical from the catacombs where our first Matriarch is supposed to be entombed, madly confessing to seeing beasts that legend states will devour the magical. And a mythical beast who saved you. It is hard to believe, especially when your proof is nothing more than what could be considered mad scribblings by a man affected by cave sickness and a woman who has lost her devotion to her country.” Standing, she clasped her hands before her.
​​
​​ “This happened on Gioran soil, and remains a Gioran problem until all the facts can be investigated. I will not allow my country to be over run by fanatics and sightseers trying to prove or disprove your story. You have full access to all of our resources, and free reign of Qrieth, but until such time this matter is resolved you may not leave the Temple City.” With little more than a nod, she would leave the couple alone in the small room to digest her words. Athrym took a breath, feeling as though the wind had been knocked out of her. Summer green eyes swung to her fiancé and she ran a hand through her unkempt locks.
​​
​​ “I’m sorry.” She whispered, unable to come up with any other words to excuse her people. Imaan give her strength, a diplomatic prisoner and a disgraced Ambassador. The world felt like it had broken all apart and was scattered to the wind.

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Nauleth Siordanti
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: Magus in the Making
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Thu Aug 01, 2019 1:26 am

7th of Yaris, 2719
CHURCH of the ETERNAL CHILD | TOO AWAKE

"And then you'll be answering to Mugroba—a rather close ally of Anaxas, need I remind you, O' Brightly Shining One?" Nauleth was in pain and disoriented and angry and a great many other things at once, but he was also the eldest son of Incumbent Hadrian Siordanti. While the two barely had what could even resemble a close relationship, especially for the past near-decade, the young redhead was hardly an idiot and as soon as Lomenak Da Huane spoke of the Symvoulio, his gold-rimmed eyes narrowed and his voice became very sharp and serious instead of panicked and strained,

"I would not insult me so, Your Most Luminous Matriarch, as it must be equally difficult to be a welcoming and gracious host when so aware of your Kingdom's current lack of support within the Vydrag this year." The professor groaned his words more than spoke them, teeth grit, straining against stitches to shift his sore body into a more upright position, although it was hardly threatening. He was, for the most part, totally unable to posture at all. Years of Dueling League had allowed him to keep his wits despite the still very real, very present level of physical discomfort he was experiencing, and the disapproval on his face deepened, left side slower than the right, damaged nerves sluggish.

Lomenak mentioned a name he knew and the realization that the tall blond professor of physical conversation—his own Gioran counterpart in many ways—was the albino woman's son completely took him off-guard. As if Naul wasn't already so totally out of the normative sensation of reality. He heard the next several lines of conversation and felt as though everything was becoming utterly unraveled.

He attempted to get a word in, failing miserably:

"You cannot—"

"I"m not just—"

"Confinement? Just who the—"

The redheaded scientist bit his lip, hard, now so agitated that he was sure his heart would crawl its way through stitches any moment now given how fast it was thrumming. The young Siordanti opened his mouth to make more objections but with a wave of fingers and the dropping of a metaphorical stone onto his chest, the scrystone fell silent. His fingers curled tightly into the book that was handed back to him and he pressed it so hard against his injured body that he sobbed and gasped for air in pain, using the sharpness of it to further focus his ability to speak.

He was, naturally, furious. The professor had spent so many years taming the fiery streak that had nearly left him nearly paralyzed, that had charred his relationship to the mona, and that had left so much destruction in its wake. He'd tempered himself with patience he never knew he possessed until now. Because now, well, now he'd lost it.

"Imprisonment and aggression? Cave sickness? And you're accusing me of mental instability because of my experiences in the Deep? Ridiculous. This has nothing to do with politics—what's down there is magical history. It's science, which has never needed political motivations to progress. How dare you use possibly some of the most dangerous discoveries in two thousand years as a clocking game piece in some political maneuver you've already lost to the Kingdom of Mugroba."

Nauleth hissed, immediately dizzy and breathless, sweating and cold at the same time. He wasn't sure if he wanted to throw up or leap out of bed and Lash complete strangers. He clenched his jaw and stared in utter disbelief at the quartz-dusted, statuesque magesty of Lomenak while she attempted to explain away her reasoning. While she was not wrong in thoughts about hysteria and panic, her processes appeared purely politically-motivated and unbelievably ruthless.

His sea glass-colored gaze blearily glared at the Da Huane monarch's back once she turned on her heel to leave them alone. The professor groaned, all but melting into the bed again, practically collapsing. He stared at the stone ceiling and then finally at Athrym for a long time without saying anything, her apology hurting far more than if she'd stuck fingers in his wounds,

"I'm not clocking sorry. I came here to do proper research, not be buried by ignorant traditions. I came here to bring the illumination of scientific discovery to the depths of mountains, not shed light upon the hearts of an entire race of stoic peoples who insult their own children instead of welcome them home. I came here to test the boundaries of monic theory, not the delicate delineations of power-hungry factions. The other Five Kingdoms will hear of this one day and if Gior ever sees their place in the Symvoulio Cycle before Anaxas does again, it will be a Turn too soon—"

Ah, too much, and yet, he kept going. He felt something sharp tug at his shoulder, aware that in his angry excitement, he'd probably ripped stitches,

"—no one can hide the truth in the dark forever. That's not how progress works. Did any of us expect what was below? No. Does that make it less true? Also, no."

The tall redhead made an attempt to ignore the blood that was now blossoming through bandages, shoving away the panic rising in his aching body, burning through every Living Conversation-exhausted nerve. He clung to his notebook and felt hot, fear-laden tears sting at the corners of his wild eyes, "Alioe help me, I didn't come here to play clocking political games. I'm a godsbedamned scientist, not a future Incumbent. I will not let your entire Kingdom get in the way of this, Athrym. Any of it. What happened down there—it's—whatever all of that was—it's important. More important than a bunch of backstabbing families and their stoic, Gioran pride."

He sobbed then, deliriously weak and full of a simmering rage that made his face tingle and his lungs burn. Tilting his head and reaching with his good hand to brush a shaking hand over her face, tucking stray hair behind her ear and racing a thumb over a moist cheek, Naul frowned, "Promise me you can stand up to this chroveshit, Miss Bruthgrave. I can't hold my own against your Matriarch without you. I didn't realize that coming here to win you back after my foolishness meant I clocking well had to fight against your entire Kingdom for truth."
This isn't Brunnhold anymore, ersehat, and you're not going home.
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Athrym Bruthgrave
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Fri Aug 09, 2019 8:51 am

7th Ophus, 2719
CHURCH OF THE ETERNAL CHILD| ONLY IMAAN KNOWS
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I​​f Lomenak heard him, she didn’t show it, sweeping from the room without any further words. The room felt so empty in the silence afterwards, like the pressure of all the fields and judgemental minds had pressed them inwards and left a gaping expanse behind when they were gone. Athrym felt panic seeping into her chest, freezing grasp wrapping around her lungs and crawling down her spine.

Lost her devotion to her country.

The blonde felt sick, she wanted to throw up and her knees felt weak. The Matriarch, her Matriarch had made it clear that the young woman had disappointed her, and for all that she had begun to question her own people Athrym still couldn’t shake years of culture and tradition. She had tried so hard to fit as a child, so hard to be the most Gioran Gioran she could be, had dedicated her youth to study and magic so she could proove herself to the rest of them. To prove that her Anaxi blood didn’t make her less pure than themselves.

She had tried.

And she had failed.

I’m sorry.

The words fell from her lips, though she wasn’t sure if it was for Nauleth or for herself, looking at him with tears in her eyes. Nauleth was silent for a long time, too long, and the slight young woman made a sound in the depth of her chest. A hitching gasp, a sob trying to escape her shocked lips, though it was swallowed as the red head finally spoke. Her ears heard him, and the logical part of her mind understood and agreed, though her heart felt like it was being crushed by the vicious anger in his voice as he spoke of Gior. Her home, her country. Color flushed her cheeks, ashamed of her people, embarrassed by all they were risking by playing this card. Slowly, summer eyes drifted to his bandages, tsking and moving to stand with hands on the taller galdor’s shoulders. Tears fell from wide eyes, fingertips trembling as she pushed on him gently with a shushing sound.

“Nauleth, you need to calm down.” She breathed with concern, feeling the lash of his words on her heart. Your Kingdom. Backstabbing. Taking a quick breath, she turned to look for one of the priests to call for a healer, glancing back at the sob in his voice and the touch of his hand. Lip trembling and tears slipping away, the young woman took a hand from his shoulder and pressed it against the one on her cheek.

“I—” Athrym began, her words sticking in her throat with a shaky exhale. Swallowing against the lump in her throat, the green eyed Gioran looked down between them.

“I’m scared Naul, I’m scared of what they could do to us. What they would do to us. I can’t…” Her head shook quickly, and she took a deep breath, exhaling slowly and giving herself a moment to calm down before speaking a little more evenly.

“I will not let this be hidden from the Ten Kingdoms. Something happened down there, something terrifying and something amazing and something entirely wrong. Politics won’t save Gior if the Hatchers advance from the Deep, and alienating Anaxas only serves to incite war. My Kingdom knows war, we commit Familicide to change the ruling family, but this is bigger than a single Kingdom. Bigger than any of the Kingdoms.” Meeting his crystalline gaze again, the younger galdor nodded with wild eyes in a weary face.

“You won’t stand alone, I promise.” Taking his hand gently from her face, Athrym placed it gently in his lap, before turning to call for aide. As they waited for the priest to come, the blonde turned back again and squeezed his hand gently.

“But first, you need to get better. We will find a way to prove the truth to them all, and to show Vita what is hiding in the Deep right under Gioran noses, till then it serves no purpose you bleeding out in this bed.” Her voice was little more than a whisper as the priest arrived, and she moved back slightly to allow the youngest to see the plume of bright red on the bandages, needing no further words for the child to turn on her heel to find a healer. Settling on the side of the bed again, the Amba--the disgraced Gioran sighed softly, dropping her mildly throbbing head into her hands as her elbows balanced on her knees.

What a mess.

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