Had a couple of really cool interactions yesterday. Thought I'd share them! Massive props to @Ethne and whoever it was playing Sheena! A massive thanks to whoever also plays Aban, @Emelle and @Tenshyo! First, one with Ethne!
Everything within your vision shifts and shimmers momentarily before solidifying once more. Accompanying the mirage is a wave of heat that ripples across your flesh and disturbs the leaves above. There is a pressure behind your eyes, at first faint but quickly increasing until there can be no doubt of the presence that rummages unapologetically through your mind.Then one with Sheena!
You crease your brow in a frown.
Standing before a strange tree.
Many of the stars are disguised behind looming clouds, tracing their slow paths across the sphere of the heavens. A large, blood-splattered totem has been erected here, formed of obsidian, ivory and red-wood. Facing outwards and surrounding the totem are a large ivory bear, an obsidian raven and a red-wood serpent. Dakun, last spear of the Yuzurai stands watch over the passage north.
You see a single exit leading south.
You have emoted: Benedicto rubs at his eyes. "What the...?"
Acknowledgment, in the form of an understanding planted directly into the fore of your thoughts. It is the Rekindled Goddess, satisfying a curiosity in the direct and possibly even imposing manner of one with little time for common courtesies.
You have emoted: Benedicto frowns again, sweat beading on his brow. "Ah." He manages weakly. "How might I serve?"
Your pose is now set as: Benedicto is here talking to the air around him.
Amusement, though mild and understated. Again in the form of an understanding - although the Goddess makes no apologies for Her intrusion, neither does She seem interested in mystery. For a time you are shown a series of images, which you quickly realize are glimpses of your own memories. Surrounded by foes, drenched in blood. Seated at a familiar bar in the lost city of Delos, speaking of both business and foolishness. You in the center of the Beacon, watching everything with a mild expression thinly covering a protective heart.
The adumbrative night stretches onward, ever elusive of dawn's grasp.
You have emoted: Benedicto closes his eyes in an effort to better follow the series of memories. His breath catches at certain images. His frown deepens at others. "I have served longer than most. But I will continue to. Until my breath is spent. My son was the same." He murmurs faintly, his eyes flickering beneath his closed lids.
The ebon of the night hugs close, obscuring your view.
A moment of pause. Silence, both in the reality around you and the mind within. It is a time of peace and tranquility, however brief. A gift, perhaps, from one whose mind is filled with fire and action and endless motion. And then it is over. The heat swirls again and you are made aware of the question that burns within Her.
You have emoted: "Serve. In whatever capacity that might be." Benedicto states with feeling. The words appear to give him strength and he straightens, shoulders back, head tilted up proudly. His eyes remain closed as he strives to adapt to the ceaseless energy of the heat inside his mind.
The awareness withdraws, though not completely. Enough that you might feel as if She stands before you, rather than within. There can be no doubt that your answer satisfies Her, though again this knowledge is planted with all the fanfare of a driven nail.
Would that all of mortalkind wore the same coat of responsibility, Benedicto.
You have emoted: Benedicto winces as his gathered strength flees at the force of the suggestion in his mind. As the presence withdraws he draws a steadying breath, his eyes fluttering open causing him to wince once again as his pupils try to focus post-onslaught. He blearily looks out into the darkness of the night before him. "I cannot speak for others, my Lady." He replies softly.
The deepening night provides hope for the coming of the dawn as the moon traces its path across the sky.
Your answer is another rustle of the leaves overhead. The next breath you take tastes heavily of the forge, and a thread of flame crawls up your spine and extends into your limbs, empowering you with the favor of the Goddess.
Ethne, the Rekindled has bestowed a divine blessing upon you. It will last for 5 days.
Should you have need of Me, child, do not hesitate to find My Forge.
Her departure is as swift as Her arrival, though the warmth that leaves your skin flushed and full of vigor is left behind.
You have emoted: Benedicto bows his head in gratitude. "My Lady." He whispers. "I will. I would also say the same of You, should You or Yours require my assistance."
(Tells): Sheena, a tower guard tells you, "Ahem. Excuse me."
You tell Sheena, a tower guard, "Hello?"
(Tells): Sheena, a tower guard tells you, "I understand you attacked my mistress. I wish her body
returned, if you would."
You tell Sheena, a tower guard, "Your mistress would be....?"
(Tells): Sheena, a tower guard tells you, "Mandre Opraf."
You tell Sheena, a tower guard, "Uhm. No. I don't think I will. She will be sacrificed on the altar
of my Lord."
(Tells): Sheena, a tower guard tells you, "I might be willing to offer some compensation if you
change your mind."
You tell Sheena, a tower guard, "If you want to compensate me, give up your position. Forget about serving the Aztob Cult. Go out into the world and let Light into your life. All that awaits you currently is either death caused by the practices of your Mistress and her ilk, or death at the hands of one like me who is trying to stop her. Not great in terms of your job or life prospects if you understand me?"
Bene decides to go take this up in person
Deep gorge in the Shamtota hills.
Wearing the same symbol carved into the door of the tower, Sheena, an Indorani guard is here. There are 2 tower guards here.
You see exits leading east and west.
(Tells): Sheena, a tower guard tells you, "I have lived my entire life fighting a battle I long
since lost interest in- until she freed us. Your beliefs mean nothing to me. Is your decision
Sheena, a tower guard inclines her head politely to you.
You have emoted: Benedicto bobs his head slightly by way of greeting to Sheena, a tower guard. "I'm not asking you to believe what I believe. What I'm asking, is that you use a little common sense. Take advantage of your new freedom. Live!" He urges.
The lines in this woman's face indicate a life of much wear, though for the moment, the expression in her eyes is one of calm. She's dressed in straight-leg pants of a dark brown color, a simple, but well-kept tunic, dark boots and a coat. Her apparel is neat and orderly and custom-fitted, her grey hair tied in a tight ponytail. She is called 'Sheena.'
Sheena, a tower guard looks upon you with caution.
Sheena, a tower guard raises an eyebrow skeptically as she regards you. "I live well enough, near as I can tell. I have no family, no history anyone remembers. There is the tower, and Mandre," she says, gesturing behind her. "One of which, you have stolen."
You place your fingers to your mouth, and focusing mentally on your trusty steed you blow hard, creating a sharp, carrying whistle.
A war turtle trots in, beckoned by its master's call.
You have emoted: Benedicto gestures to the corpse of Mandre draped across the shell of a war turtle. "I will not be returning her." He declares flatly.
Sheena, a tower guard lips curl in irritation, but beyond this she shows no emotion. "Very well.
Then we have nothing further to discuss."
Sheena, a tower guard says, "Though if you would answer one curiosity?"
You have emoted: Benedicto lowers his head and sighs bitterly. "I gave you a chance." He murmurs quietly. He raises his head and shifts his stance, his dhurive held out and to the side, ready to strike. "Ask!" He replies sharply.
Sheena, a tower guard eyes you warily, with a glance at the two other guards beside her. "Who is your Lord, that He would take offense to us?"
You have emoted: Benedicto's gaze narrows suspiciously. "The Maelstrom, Lord Slyphe." He proclaims proudly. "But it is not just my Lord who finds offense at the practices of the Indoron, but all of the Divinities within the Pantheon of Light." He cuts the air in front of him with one blade of his dhurive, twirling it as he transfers it to his other hand. "I might as well say that I would sacrifice your Mistress on any of Their altars and All would be glad!"
Sheena, a tower guard mutters under her breath, "The 'Light'..." With a shrug, she adds, "Very well. It is a conflict I am familiar with, and His name is vaguely so as well. Nothing else, then, I know well enough of your Light to know I want no part of it."
You have emoted: Benedicto listens with a vaguely sorrowful expression. "Then the time for words has ended." He states, his pearl-white gaze flicking from Sheena, a tower guard to the two guards flanking her. "May the Underking judge you kindly."
With a grin, Sheena, a tower guard says, "And may He judge you instead."
You have emoted: Benedicto remains passive, his dhurive held at the ready, waiting for the first
A tower guard flips a tarot card from a belt at her side, staring hard at you.
Sheena, a tower guard glances again to the guards at her side, and then back at you. "Well?"
You have emoted: Benedicto's gaze flits to the guard holding the tarot card and then back to Sheena, a tower guard.
Sheena, a tower guard says, "Your move, servant of the Maelstrom."
You have emoted: "Oh! Are you waiting for me?" Benedicto asks of Sheena, a tower guard. He
straightens and lowers his weapon to his side. "It would be rather foolish of me to just run
headlong in when it's 3 onaaaaaAAAAHHHHHAVE AT YOU!" He leaps forward, his first blow aimed at the poor chap that had previously wielded a tarot card, the slash heading for his wrist.
A tower guard blinks, jumping back hastily out of range, dropping the card in surprise.
You have emoted: Benedicto lands on one foot and, using the momentum of his missed swing, pirouettes so as to bring the second blade of his weapon to bear on the fellow.
-Cue fighting spam-
Eventually once both tower guards are dead and only Sheena is left attacking.
Defending himself, you exclaim, "Sheena! Cease this attack and surrender!"
Raising an eye, Sheena, a tower guard says, "Surrender? To one who attacks my allies and mistress? What do you gain from this battle?"
You have emoted: Kicking the body of the second guard from his dhurive, Benedicto circles Sheena, a tower guard warily. "It is done. You were three, now there is just you. Surrender." His shoulders rise and fall, his breath coming hard and fast from the exhilaration of the fight. "Surrender to me." He says calmly. "You will be escorted to Enorian where you will be kept comfortably." He draws a deeper breath, relaxing. "You have my word."
Sheena, a tower guard glances between you and the tower, folding her arms across her chest. A
momentary hint of confusion passes across her expression. "My... place is here. Mandre may yet find her way back. Why do you offer surrender now? I am well aware of how my people were treated by yours in years past."
You have emoted: "You had made your mind up. If I had offered you surrender in front of your former compatriots, how would they have reacted had you accepted? Hmm?" Benedicto asks as he stabs his dhurive into the ground at his side. "This is not the past. I offer you the chance to experience a different sort of life." He takes a step towards Sheena, a tower guard, almost as one would approach a frightened animal. "Give me a year. If you decide the life I offer is not for you, I give you my word you can return to this Tower." His voice is soft and reassuring.
Taking another careful step forwards, you say, "I sense that you are here, not because you choose to be, but because it is all you know. You have been fed stories of the merciless Illumine in your captivity. You only have the Demonsbane to compare us to. I do not fault your judgement, however misplaced it may be.""
Sheena, a tower guard keeps a wary eye on you, her expression uncertain. A spark of curiosity
flickers behind her eyes, and she raises her hand to her chin. "If we would make... an agreement, of sorts? You would agree to my terms as well?"
You have emoted: Benedicto halts before Sheena, a tower guard. The distance between them is wide enough so as not to be threatening, but close enough that a normal conversation can be held. "Speak your terms, then we can reach an agreement." He states with a nod.
Sheena, a tower guard relaxes a fraction of the tension from her stance, slipping a tarot card back into her belt with some hesitation. "You can preach to me if you want, if you swear that I can leave this 'Enorian' in one year. In exchange, I wish to know more of this world, and what has changed in our absence."
(Tells): Emelle's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Hello, Ben."
You have emoted: Benedicto listens in silence before nodding as Sheena, a tower guard, finishes speaking. "I have no problem with that." He responds. "Though I will not preach to you. I merely wish for you to experience that which you have been taught to revile." He offers Sheena, a tower guard his hand. "I do not enjoy needlessly spilling blood when it is clear that it can be saved."
(Tells): You tell Emelle, "Hello Em...I er...I might have a house guest for us."
(Tells): Emelle's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Aye?"
(Tells): You tell Emelle, "A woman. Of the Aztob Cult. I believe that she can be turned from
following their ways. She has agreed to spend one year experiencing life within Enorian. If she
chooses to leave at the end of that year, she may return here, to Mandre's Tower."
Sheena, a tower guard starts to take your hand, and withdraws it, holding it close to herself. Even so, she nods slowly at you. "If you say so. I will follow, but I make no promises beyond the year."
(Tells): Emelle's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Mm."
(Enorian): You say, "Citizens, I will be entering the city with an individual called Sheena. She is,
or rather was, a guard at Mandre's Tower. I ask that you treat her courteously. She has been taught to revile the Light and our ways by the Aztob Cult. Let us show her that our way is one of mercy. One of hope and light."
Sheena, a tower guard begins to follow you.
(Tells): You tell Emelle, "Could you meet me at the gate?"
(Tells): Emelle's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Aye. Moment."
The Landward Gate.
The Landward Gate, the largest of the City's gates, is a massive archway cut from brightest marble and darkest obsidian. Reaching almost three stories tall, the twin gates are crafted from darkwood bound and studded with tempered steel, graven with blessings and innumerable enchantments to help guard the City against even the worst of assaults. The highway to the north meets the beginning of the streets in a sudden shift of rough cobblestones to smooth flagstones, the latter leading southward onto two branching boulevards that encircle a lush, verdant park. The boulevards are lined by innumerable house fronts divided from the streets by lush front gardens, some rising almost as high as the gates. The streets, at all points, are lit by brilliant, glowing orbs of fire set atop pillars, spaced equidistantly so that the illumination remains constant. A fire-blackened anvil lies here, surface emblazoned with the symbol of a dual flame. Resting on the ground is a cube-shaped silver sigil. There are 15 shrouded Kingbound soldiers here. There are 5 Ascendril mages here. There are 4 imposing Luminaries here. There are 5 Daru firebrands here. An armored mule stands stubbornly, hooves planted solidly in the ground. Wearing the same symbol carved into the door of the tower, Sheena, an Indorani guard is here.
You see exits leading north and south.
You have emoted: Benedicto glances at Sheena, a tower guard as they pass under the gates, heading down the street towards the park in the distance.
A meeting of two boulevards.
The rain pours down, daylight edging the dark clouds with streaks of silver. A granite pillar stands here beside the road, an orb of fire casting brilliant illumination from its apex. A sigil in the shape of a small, rectangular monolith is on the ground. Resting on the ground is a cube-shaped silver sigil. There are 12 imposing Luminaries here. There are 4 Daru firebrands here. There are 5 steadfast Templars here. There are 5 shrouded Kingbound soldiers here. An armored mule stands stubbornly, hooves planted solidly in the ground.
You see exits leading north, southeast, and southwest.
You have emoted: "Welcome to Enorian." Benedicto declares expansively, his arms rising to gesture at the bustling metropolis around him.
Sheena, a tower guard glances up at the gates uneasily, shielding her eyes with a hand. "Was this not... erm. Shallam?"
You have emoted: "Once it was. But it has been destroyed twice since then. Shallam was destroyed and rebuilt as Enorian." Benedicto says with a slight smile as he spies Emelle. "How long were you trapped within the Vortex?" He asks, his attention switching back to Sheena, a tower guard.
Emelle smiles at you and saunters over to your side, her hands buried in her coat pockets. Once
there, she nods her head at Sheena.
Tenshyo arrives from the southeast.
Tenshyo's mouth turns up as his face breaks into a smile.
Emelle acknowledges Tenshyo with a nod of her head.
Sheena, a tower guard asks, “So, is it to the dungeons with me then?”
You have emoted: Benedicto casts a meaningful look at Emelle before he replies to Sheena, a tower guard. "No. Nothing like that." He states reassuringly. "Rather, I invite you to be a guest in our home. Or, if you would prefer, some other lodging within the city."
You say to Sheena, a tower guard, "You have come, not as my prisoner, despite your surrender. I wish for the lies you have been taught to be corrected with the truth. How will I accomplish that if I lock you away in a dungeon?"
Sheena, a tower guard flicks her gaze over at Tenshyo. "So you said," she remarks, mildly, "Suppose I didn't quite believe you."
You have emoted: "I do not lie." Comes Benedicto's flat response.
Emelle glances up at you, her lips tilting into a wry half-smile.
With a faint smirk, Sheena, a tower guard says, "Such a unique individual you must be. Your... house, then?"
Emelle's eyebrow lofts as she glances over Sheena.
You have emoted: Benedicto gives a faint nod of approval. "You will learn to trust me." He says
confidently. "Please, follow me." He moves off at a brisk pace, gesturing at the sights and features of the city as he walks.
(Tells): You tell Aban, "Ahem, well met Aban. I have an...er...individual with me. She is of the
Aztob Cult. I am attempting to cast aside the lies she has been taught and change her perceptions of who we are. I do not know if you would care to meet her?"
-Movement to Bene and Em’s house-
A lambent cavern foyer.
A sigil in the shape of a small, rectangular monolith is on the ground. Wearing the same symbol
carved into the door of the tower, Sheena, an Indorani guard is here. A fledgling airbeast hovers in the air here, curiously floating from side to side. Emelle is here. Tenshyo is here.
You see exits leading east, down, and out (closed stone door).
(Tells): Aban tells you, "Of course, Benedicto! Where should I meet you or, ah, would you mind
You ask Emelle, "Would you mind fetching Aban? I believe it would be good for him to meet her?"
Emelle nods her head at you.
You say to Sheena, a tower guard, "Welcome to mine and Emelle's home. I hope you will find your stay comfortable. Ah..."
Tenshyo's mouth turns up as his face breaks into a smile.
Emelle enters from the out, followed by Aban.
Tenshyo smiles at Aban.
Aban says to Tenshyo, "Ah, Tenshyo. How are you doing, my friend?"
Tenshyo smiles and says to Aban, "I am doing absolutely wonderful, thank you."
You have emoted: Benedicto gestures at the opening to the east. "That is a garden, there is a view of the Beryl sea." His arm moves to point out the staircase that winds downwards. "Below is a tidal pool which you may use, there is also a private bea-ah Aban!" He greets Aban warmly. "Please Sheena, I would like you to meet both Aban and the current Vanguard of Enorian, Tenshyo."
Sheena, a tower guard glances around the house, deep in thought, looking up as she notices Aban. She nods politely in greeting.
Aban clasps his hands before him, offering a short bow. "Greetings, Sheena. It is a pleasure to meet you."
Sheena, a tower guard says, "And you, Aban. I didn't realize my capture would warrant the interest of so many."
You have emoted: "Perhaps I should provide a bit of background." Benedicto says looking from Sheena, a tower guard, to Aban, Tenshyo then Emelle. "Sheena is, or was, or whatever, a member of the Aztob Cult. She served at Mandre's Tower." He winces slightly at the word 'capture'.
"Ah, hardly a capture-" Tenshyo replies with a quiet chuckle, "-never known Benedicto to be the type to go against his word. You're more than welcome to stay as long as you'd like within the city."
You say to Sheena, a tower guard, "I would prefer to call it a 'conditional surrender'"
Emelle glances up at you briefly.
Aban slips his hands into his robes, his brow furrowing. "I am unfamiliar with this Aztob Cult. I
was aware that Sheena is, ah," he pauses, falling silent for a few moments casting a glance between you and Tenshyo. "I see. You are not a prisoner then, Sheena?"
Emelle's gaze drifts to Aban, then to Sheena.
Tenshyo himself looks to Sheena, a tower guard and you at the question posed by Aban.
Sheena, a tower guard says, without emotion, "I fail to see much difference." To Aban, she adds, "We have made an agreement. He says I am not a prisoner."
Aban says, "Mm, I see. What of this 'Aztob Cult', Benedicto? I am not familiar with that name, I am afraid."
You have emoted: Benedicto nods at the words of Sheena, a tower guard. "We made an agreement. She would come to Enorian for a year. If, at the end of that year she decides she wishes to return to the Aztob at Mandre's Tower. She may." He turns his attention to Aban. "The Aztob are a group of Necromancers, essentially a much older branch of the Indorani. They were trapped inside a place that has now come to be known as 'The Shattered Vortex' for aeons. A handful managed to escape thanks to the efforts of Sheena's mistress, Mandre."
You have emoted: Benedicto casts a look at Sheena, a tower guard. "My belief is that Sheena here is who she is because she had no choice. She has spent the bulk of her life trapped within the Vortex fighting against a group who call themselves the Demonsbane Revolt. They are warriors of the Light without pity or mercy." He looks around at you all. "I could have killed Sheena along with the rest of her cult, but I chose not to because I sense that she has the potential to see the truth. To learn that there is more to life than the ways of the Indoron."
"The Demonsbane," Tenshyo informs, "Are a conglomerate of old Paladins, Priests, Luminaries, and the sort."
Sheena, a tower guard allows her gaze to drift around the room, seeming not to hear your words.
Aban tilts his head to the side, eye flickering back to regard Sheena. "You are attempting to purify her of this taint, then?" he asks, voice low. "Or do you feel that she will.. right this herself?"
Emelle listens in silence, her one-eyed gaze slowly drifting from speaker to speaker.
You have emoted: Benedicto leans over to Aban, almost speaking from the side of his mouth. "I am hoping that she will right this herself once she experiences what it is like to live among us."
Aban nods slowly to you.
"It is one thing to live amongst a... perceived enemy-" Tenshyo intones gently, looking to all gathered, "-but it is another to actively involve them, show them around." The man looks to Sheena, a tower guard whilst still addressing everyone, "Teach them why we do what we do, show them the culture we've nurtured here."
Aban says, "You are all quite kind. I would.. I am not certain that I would be such a patient,
kindly teacher with one such as her, but I understand the need for such compassion."
You have emoted: Benedicto nods in agreement with Tenshyo. "I could have brought her here as a prisoner to then try and attempt to purify her. But what would that accomplish? She would think me no better than those of the Demonsbane. No progress would be made." He glances over at Sheena, a tower guard. "If she is to change, she has to decide it is what she wants. Trying to force her to will only push her further away."
Sheena, a tower guard narrows her eyes slightly at Aban's words, but makes no comment.
With a murmur, Aban says, "A choice of her own will. Sheena, do you find this agreeable?"
Her tone sharp, Sheena, a tower guard says, "I have already made my agreement with Benedicto."
You have emoted: Benedicto gives a nod of reassurance to Aban. "I think that, for now, we should leave Sheena to her devices and let her become acclimatised to being in Enorian." He turns to Sheena, a tower guard. "As part of your stay here, I have to request that you change if you decide to head out into the city. As much as the city may have been forewarned about your being here, it would do well to avoid any potential....mishaps?" He casts a glance at Tenshyo.
"Change?" Tenshyo asks you, "If you mean her clothes, they're only clothes. Nothing to worry about."
You frown and say to Tenshyo, "She wears the device of Mandre upon her clothing."
Aban steps alongside you, leaning in for a moment and lowers his voice to a low rasp. Aban bows his head for a moment, eye still remaining fixed upon Sheena.
Aban murmurs to you, "If you have need of a guard or jailer of a sort, Benedicto, I am quite capable in that stead. I watched over our prisons for many years as a lawkeeper and peacemaker amongst my people. We may not have need of it, but my services are always offered."
Sheena, a tower guard glances down at the symbol on her clothing.
You have emoted: Benedicto looks at Aban and gives a quick nod. He leans closely to Aban in turn.
You murmur to Aban, "I would appreciate it if you and yours could perhaps keep an eye on her. At a distance of course. Both for her protection and ours."
You have emoted: Benedicto backs away from Aban with a hopeful expression.
Emelle narrows her eye at you and Aban.
With a thin smile, Aban says to you, "Of course. I am pleased to offer such a service, my friend."
You have emoted: Benedicto smiles at Aban in reply. "Now. I must go to my rest." He turns his gaze upon Emelle. "I will see you when I return. Please help her."
Tenshyo thinks a moment, "Hrm, a missive to the city would help in that endeavor."
You nod your head at Tenshyo, showing your acceptance.