Written By Medeia
Dec. 3, 2023, 9:27 p.m.(4/21/1021 AR)
Written By Avita
Dec. 3, 2023, 7:58 p.m.(4/21/1021 AR)
Did you know that there is a tale once told in the dunes of Eurus that is the very epitome of the concept of immortality at any cost?
The theory, really, is that so long as something you have done is remembered, you shall live eternal, and that each of these tales -- those which are worthy -- become the very stars in the sky?
At least, that is what I was told, once upon a time.
... Once upon a time...
Have you ever stopped to think of just how significant those four words are?
The suggestion of the importance of what you are about to hear: That once, long ago, far away, some soul did something that would echo through time like some haunting melody seeking to find your ear.
That once, in a time that so many have forgotten in its entirety, there was one thing worth remembering.
It's like being told a secret that no other will ever know, in a language that you didn't know you could speak.
... once upon a time...
Once upon a time, there was a voice...
This voice spoke a million words, each of which was a journey, and every one of them lead back to...
Written By Avita
Dec. 3, 2023, 7:48 p.m.(4/21/1021 AR)
I feel as though I have asked this question a million times, yet not once have I received an answer that entertained, let alone satisfied me:
If you could tell but one story, one tale by which this weary world might remember you -- one caution to grant those that came after, one memory to remind the coming era of who you were, and what you stood for -- what would it be?
Written By Avita
Dec. 3, 2023, 7:45 p.m.(4/21/1021 AR)
Did you know?
I have never understood friendship.
People speak of love, and of comradery -- they speak of how their lives have been enriched by the people that they have met along the way, how they could never have gotten through their trials and tribulation without the love and support of all these people...
Did you know, diary, that support is simply another word for 'crutch'?
Where would I be now, had I waited for a friend to find me?
If I had waited for another to elevate me, rather than rising upon the horizon of my own volition?
Oh, don't look at me like that.
I can practically smell the pity on you.
I can see the 'what a shame', 'everyone needs friends' written plain upon your even plainer features.
We'll see if I return the favour.
Written By Valencia
Dec. 3, 2023, 7:18 p.m.(4/21/1021 AR)
Written By Thea
Dec. 3, 2023, 6:53 p.m.(4/21/1021 AR)
Relationship Note on Eirene
Written By Thea
Dec. 3, 2023, 5:57 p.m.(4/21/1021 AR)
Written By Medeia
Dec. 3, 2023, 10:58 a.m.(4/20/1021 AR)
Oh, this sent me down some interesting thought-paths as I considered the questions. I have decided that my response - plucked exactly as initially written in my private correspondence - should be preserved:
"Fortunately for everyone, I am still insisting that all guests use the stairs rather than a ladder made from my hair. As romantic as that sounds, I suspect my neck would fail to support the weight of even the sprightliest of lovers. Really, one should likely avoid any relationships in which they are not welcome through the front door. So, no, I do not think she was a good lover - though, that is a specific comment on her staus of being a lover and not her qualities in bed. Perhaps she was phenomenal where it counted!"
May we all be phenomenal where it counts.
Written By Duarte
Dec. 3, 2023, 4:13 a.m.(4/20/1021 AR)
Submitted at Count Duarte Amadeo's request to the Whites for the purpose of his memoir.
Maybe it's the concoctions given, maybe it's the lack of blood that by now has surely been scrubbed from the entrance. But I'm grieving for him. It's wrong, I'm sure many would tell me, but I am. Not for his death. Not for his life. There are those who saw what they saw, and maybe it is much more just the colour of youth that I remember it through but he gave me purpose. What life did not teach me, he did. To that shadows he liked to stay and there, he taught me the same. I know now why he liked them. There was a time that I would have died for him. But like those who were either father or I had considered father, they have taken steps that have brought them to their doom at their own hand.
I told Prince Laric one time, that I regretted and felt remorse for the actions that I did when I was the man's hand. I feel some remorse and regret now. Regret that I did not see what was happening sooner. Remorse that I did nothing before now, to try and correct it. I bear loyalty to Pravus, as I feel it to the inquisition. At one time, it was loyalty to him, for I thought that they were one and the same.
But now, he is gone. They are gone. Whether it is illusion or in truth, I don't know, but I know that there is a hollowness that I feel that cannot be attributed to the injuries I sustained. To the damage done to Pravus. At some point, the Duchess will visit, or call me before her and I will have to answer, I am sure, for the deaths of those in the house that I called on her to use and help.
This is the last, that I will say his name, write his name, think his name. As I lay here and use my energy to put to paper, I will do as is bidden. That which was, is no more. To fade into the ether, like the others who I called family or mentor.
May the gods give you compassion, may you find a peace that you could not here. I have to think, that somewhere you were once untouched and had good intentions.
Written By Mabelle
Dec. 3, 2023, 2:14 a.m.(4/19/1021 AR)
Written By Raven
Dec. 2, 2023, 11:43 p.m.(4/19/1021 AR)
Written By Raven
Dec. 2, 2023, 8:20 p.m.(4/19/1021 AR)
Written By Gwenna
Dec. 2, 2023, 8:15 p.m.(4/19/1021 AR)
Relationship Note on Volcica
Well, okay, at official functions and situations in which correct titles are expected and proper to use, but otherwise...
Written By Neviah
Dec. 2, 2023, 12:38 p.m.(4/18/1021 AR)
If you accidentally look up,
For your own sake,
They have been traded for contrast:
Endless sky and containers.
Written By Aconite
Dec. 1, 2023, 11:47 p.m.(4/17/1021 AR)
And that is why it's beautiful.
Written By Skaldia
Dec. 1, 2023, 10:17 p.m.(4/17/1021 AR)
Upon my return, I immediately joined the Society of Explorers, and I think that was a wise choice all things considered. I hope to resume my duties as a Disciple of Petrichor as well. It will be so very good to see my family again, though I suspect the birds and the trees and the unfurling of spring's glory will soon be calling my name. It is hard to enjoy such things as much as I normally do, however, when worrisome things are afoot.
Written By Duarte
Dec. 1, 2023, 7:39 a.m.(4/16/1021 AR)
He was a man as enigmatic as he was feared. He met his end in a manner befitting the tumult he sowed. The allegiances of the former Master of Questions had long been the subject of speculation. It would only be a matter of time before he was outed as a traitor.
In hindsight, Shreve's rise to the role of Master of Questions was a dark omen. His reign was marked by ruthless efficiency and lack of moral compass.
The crux came when evidence of his treachery emerged. The High Inquisitor, Prince Laric Grayson, began a meticulous investigation, unraveling Shreve's web of deceit. A plot was then hatched. Duchess Belladonna Pravus would lure Shreve to Pravus Manor where he could be seized and dealt with. Leaning on my access to the man, I was to leak word to Shreve that the King's Own were planning to move King Alaric out of the palace. Assuming Shreve took the bait, the King's Own and Inquisition would ambush Shreve's loyal, while the Iron Guard barricaded the bridge to prevent retreat.
Both ploys proved successful - but at cost. Shreve was apprehended at Pravus Manor. After refusing to surrender, Shreve and some of his fellow traitors were cut down.
But I, I was at the palace.
At the precise time I had fed to Shreve, twelve of his most senior members of the Inquisition, led by Inquisitor Trevino, appeared crossing Sovereign Bridge. A summer storm had blown in from the Bay of Thrax and rain engulfed us and became torrential as Trevino began slicing open his own hand and asking for His Majesty.
Such is his way, Prince Alistair (before he was Prince, you know?) stepped forward and cut through all pretese and gave no pretext. "Let's just get to the part where you all die very painful deaths." He must've known there'd be no easy surrender.
Trevino proceeded to advance and lay accusations against Dame Leona Thrax - accusing her of treason! He began choke. The storm grew intense, shrouding the scenery with sheets of heavy rainfall. But the beating of precipitation against the stone ground could not mask the sound of Trevino's screaming. As he was overcome by some force within himself, he drew that very same dagger he used upon his hand and took it to his throat. He fell forward. Lightning struck. His blood pooled around him and refused to be washed by the rain. It drew together and congealed and - sure as I write this - began to take the shape of a man with large monstrous wings like those of a bat. The thing spoke, in a growl low and loud enough to cut through the pattering rain, "None of you will survive..."
Inquisitor Tikva drew her bow and with passionate voice belted a song that harmed and enraged the demon. The terrible creature bellowed and drew in the storm with winds so heavy they blew several Iron Guardsman off the bridge to their death. The rain turned to blood and beat down on the forces that guarded the palace and bridge: the Crimson Blades, King's Own, Iron Guard and Inquisition.
The 11 traitorous Inquisitors - those that were led by Trevino - donned looks of terror as they seemed to be controlled like puppets and were impelled forward in attack. The squall become overpowering. It swirled around the bridge turning day to night with a thick, ruddy opacity. Battle ensured.
The 11 inquisitors were quickly met upon by the swords of Alistair and Silas Whitehawk and the arrows of Narciso Artiglio, whilst Dame Leona with her sword, and Inquisitor Tikva with her arrows, honed on the demon.
But it was the song - Tikva's song - that enraged the thing most, for it gathered into its terrifying claw a great cloud and sent a searing streak of flame that cut straight through Narciso. It cried in fury that all Godtouched would perish!
And me, with my little daggers. Me - so ill-suited for combat and surrounded by heroes. It was only off some blinding, primal insistence for survival that I swung and parried at all. But Narciso's sudden demise was a shock that gave me pause. The skirmish resumed around me: Sir Roland, the stablemaster Tristan, Lord Tobias Telmar - and then others came! The Princess Reese Grayson and Abbas, formerly of House Thrax, along with Duke Harald Grimhall and Prince Ainsley Grayson. Heroes - all - descended upon the bloody demon.
The monster was wounded and the blood rain began to pierce the skin like poison. And yet, still, more rushed in: Luca Grayson nee Velenosa, Prince Fergus Redrain, Prince Aiden Grayson, the Blacktongue of Velenosa, Princess Serafine Velenosa!
Under the force of these heroes blades did the demon fall, rupturing into a black cloud whose expanse was diminished by Inquisitor Tikva's carol. It exploded outward, ripping and burning flesh of all it touched.
Others, still, came to defeat the remaining Inquisitors who were puppeteered by some unnatural force. But I lost track, for I was done. Sentenced to die upon that bridge by that abyssal monstrosity, my skin flayed by acidic rain and my abdomen lacerated to my innards.
Melena Black contained what she could, there on the bridge, before Abbas carried me over his back like freshly hunted game to the Pravus estate. "She's going to kill me," I told her.
Written By Duarte
Dec. 1, 2023, 1:14 a.m.(4/15/1021 AR)
In the wake of the turmoil of Setarco that eventually prompted Belladonna's arrival to Arx, and in the shadow of the Inquisition, a sort of reunion beckoned. It was with Lianne Pravus. Though we both stayed at the manor in Setarco, we had hardly occasion to take notice of one another until now, when duty to family saw our paths cross. I had only known of her in those years previous as a bit of a bane to the Duchess who often complained that Lianne needed to be wed. Of course, once decided, she would then complain that Lianne was too indispensable to be married off. Such gossip is commonplace in noble houses, I hardly paid it any mind beyond the amusement that one of the nieces was getting the better of the Duke & Duchess.
But amidst the darkness that had settled over Arx after Duke Piero's murder, Lianne's arrival was like a light - an analogy I know she'd shy from. I am prepared to be soundly tsked for it.
Lianne was a woman of understated beauty and her mind was as sharp as a most honed blade. Her presence balanced grace and intellect with an air of mystery - for, you see, Lianne's subtlety and intelligence are not just in her words but in the spaces between them.
Driven by insatiable curiosity, Lianne was a seeker of truths. Not of the sort I often sought. Her pursuits were into the threads of the very fabric that holds our world together. And this would often lead her into the deepest of intellectual rabbit holes. She had a chilling ability to weave through the complexities of politics and governance - it did not take long for me to see why she was too precious an asset to be given away by marriage.
Our meeting in Arx was a confluence of minds - a blending of our distinct yet complementary talents. Lianne's brilliance in strategy and research, and my knack for the unseen and unsaid.
When a dear friend, co-author, and loyal, beloved servant of House Pravus, was under suspicion of dastardly deeds - and when it became evident that he could not possibly have been in two places at once - was when I began prodding at things that didn't want to be prodded. But Lianne had a thirst for this stuff that could not be quenched. And I was beginning to catch glimpses of what Shreve had promised revelation of in those months before.
From there we located a book of a particular and peculiar sort. Indeed, a whole piece of the world was being discovered that none knew existed as we tracked the bloodline of House Pravus.
How business blossoms into friendship, then to something more. Isn't that a tale old as time itself?
Together we would enjoy the balcony of the Pravus Estate. The bowls of summer berries that settled between us were in many ways symbolic of our time together - sweet, but fleeting. I don't remember much of our talks beyond that we had them. But I do remember how those morsels would stain her fingers all shades of red and purple.
This was 1005, and the world is only now coming to awareness of the terrifying nature of what we only began to (poorly) fathom then. Then - when our best foot forward was based on the ravings of madness from a prisoner in the Inquisition's panopticon.
I have some correspondence from the time which I revisit often. Mine were a mix of adoration and concern. I reflected on the darker paths my life had taken, and the effects of our particular studies upon me. Choices, regrets, and a life lived on one's own terms. And a vow.
Lianne's back was like a balm to my troubled spirit. Of me, she made a request. She also expressed her characteristic defiant will and her confidence that our efforts would either break or better the world.
Sixteen years later, my dear Lianne was right.
But let's not get ahead of ourselves. There was still the matter of Shreve.
Written By Ann
Nov. 30, 2023, 8:08 p.m.(4/15/1021 AR)
Written By Aelgar
Nov. 30, 2023, 10:07 a.m.(4/14/1021 AR)
Please note that the scholars may take some time preparing your journal for others to read.