Some context, if you don't know these characters well. Sibatti and Seir are very old Sentinels who have been around since the guild lost Metamorphosis and gained Dhuriv. Together, while Siba was GM, they wrote several Sacraments for the guild, which are still used today. Siba's time in the guild has finally come to an end, and she asked her old friend to do the honours.
Seir arrives from the north.
A hollow of scattered cairns.
Seir is here. He wields a living staff of gnarled bloodwood in his hands. Shattered fragments of stone are all that remains of a circle of cairn stones.
You see a single exit leading north.
You have emoted: A lit cigarette between her fingers, Sibatti is standing amongst the cairns, looking over them calmly. She is remarkably cleaner than usual, her hair pristine and worn down and straight to her lower back.
Seir treads into this dim alcove with a slow gait, his bloodwood staff clicking against the chamber's stone floor as he arrives. Catching sight of you, his features are abundantly clear: a slight smile that is quickly weighed down by the gravity of the situation. "Esry," the Idreth says warmly, resuming his steps to eventually take a place close to you amongst the cairns.
You have emoted: Sibatti's eyelids are half-lidded and heavy, and her neutral expression disguises some emotion not fully revealed or perhaps even realized. ".. Thank you for coming," she answers Seir, her voice the same as you remember: coarse as gravel, thickly accented, soft as a purr.
Seir's immediate reaction is but one mere chuckle, the corners of his lips curving into an amused albeit short-lived grin -- immediately replaced by a similarly neutral expression. "Of course," he says with his raspy voice. He allows a moment of silence to permeate through the chamber, little noise passing between the two of you save for the occasional sound coming from outside of the Great Oak itself. Finally, he speaks: "You are sure about this?" the man asks.
You have emoted: Sibatti dips her chin in a crisp nod, dragging the last life out of her cigarette and extinguishing it against the human skull decorating her belt. "Let's go."
Seir nods his head slowly, his head dipping low and his eyes closing. The man takes a long, deep inhale of the stale, musty air permeating through the alcove before settling his silver eyes upon you. "Very well," he replies before lifting his wooden arm and making a beckoning motion towards the alcove's exit.
At a pillar of impaled dhurives.
Huntleader Tomor sits upon the ground here, his gaze dark. Ranger Namatin eyes the pillar of impaled dhurives here, a solemn expression upon his face. Lokhani dur Naya attempts to look busy here, hand-rolling a blunt. Huntleader Tomor is a tutor. View HELP LEARNING for more information about learning skills.
You see exits leading south (open pine door) and down.
Seir treads through the grotto, his gait slow with clear reticence in every step. As the two of you both through the grotto, past the graves, and finally the towering pillar bearing the multitude of dhurives of Sentinels who have come and gone. The fact that you both have made it thus far does not even occur to the Idreth until he comes close to colloding with some of the scattered vegetation that surrounds the pillar itself. He snaps from his thoughts, regains his bearings, and his eyes wander across the tall pillar. They drift from dhurive to dhurive, settling for a long time upon a broken mithril blade that has been worn from time. Finally, however, he turns back to you. "You've performed this for me once, you know -- it is odd that we two, who discovered this Sacrament from the ancestors, would have to perform it upon one another."
You have emoted: Sibatti gives Huntleader Tomor and Ranger Namatin a respectful nod each, as the pair slip into the graveyard. She follows Seir through the winding path, always within arm's length of a former Sentinel's story, a legacy whose age is borne by overgrowth. "I thought it was only suitable for you to do so," she answers, her voice small and uncharacteristically tender. "No one else knows the history quite so much."
Seir turns on his heel to face you fully, releasing his grip from his quarterstaff and allowing the length of it to rest idly against his breast. Seir's lips curve into a genuine smile, the lines of age marking his complexion making themselves readily apparent as he does so. "I had a good teacher," he offers, before correcting himself with: "... Have a good teacher."
You have emoted: Sibatti tilts her head in a brief cock, half of her lips turned up in a smirk. A long, slow breath is taken in and released, and the Yeleni shakes out her limbs of lingering tension. Her dhurive bows in her grip, dipping beneath the height of the impaled blades - never touching them, or the ground.
"Right then," Seir murmurs, rolling his shoulders in a shrug and taking one to two steps in place as if he were shaking dust off from himself. "I'm proud to do you this honour," he says once more with a smile before closing his eyes and allowing his features to settle. With an exhale, his eyes open once more as the Idreth takes his quarterstaff back into his possession. With a quick lift of his arm, he exerts no small amount of force in implanting the staff's kesgish blade into the floor of the Oak, allowing it to support itself as he moves to stand before you.
You have emoted: Sibatti remains as still as an oak, her breathing even and measured and only her eyes moving, watching over each of Seir's movements. "Through dhurive and blood," comes the whisper that breaks its way through her thin expression.
Seir offers a quiet, sharp nod towards you in affirmation of your words. "Sworn by oath," he begins, his stature becoming rigid, "and bound by blood. We, of the Sentinel Pride, walk upon a path of sacrifice and service." Each word seems to almost cause a part of Seir's solemn expression to break, fleeting moments of disbelief and despondency playing with each other before he manages to catch himself. "We understand the necessity of our appointed duty, for it is we that have been judged worthy by those that have come before us..." Finally, he turns from you and faces the towering pillar of broken dhurives -- perhaps all the better as he makes little effort to hide his sorrow away from you. "However," he resumes, his solemn voice belying his emotions, "there is one that comes to me, for their own reasons, and are asking to lay down this mantle of responsibility that we are charged with and be released from the blood bond that they placed upon the Huntress so long ago."
You have emoted: Seir’s words are his alone to speak, regardless of Sibatti’s predisposition to take over, as he would acutely remember. She waits, hanging on every word, not even her tail moving to disturb the overgrown floor, or provide some form of playful levity in this moment.
Seir's wooden arm extends outward, his spindly, needle-like fingers brushing against some of the jagged, broken hafts that protrude from the pillar. "Here lie the memories of those who have come before, those who have fallen..." His voice trails as his other normal hand is raised, the Idreth repeating the motion on one of the long forgotten dhurives that dots the base of the pillar. "Here lie the memories of those who have left their Oath behind..." He says nothing and does nothing for a spell, merely allowing his arms to drape back down to his side. Finally, he turns to face you once more, meeting you with a steely gaze reminiscent of the one he gave to you as that leather mask-donning youth so long ago. "In one final act of selflessness, you will sacrifice the weapon that has both defined and served you while you were a member of the Pride. You are not being stripped of our lore by the good will of the ancestors. The severing of your dhurive represents the severing of the Oath that binds you to the Pride, and... the Pride to you." Slowly, he resumes his place before you once more, his wooden palm opened between the two of you. "Your dhurive, please."
You have emoted: When Sibatti is finally able to catch Seir's eye again, she meets him with a calm and reassuring smile - genuine, the type that claims her eyes as well. Her arm raises, and she hands over the petrified wood grip of her serrated dhurive to him. As the weapon transfers hands, an afterimage of dark reflection glints in the damascus blades - whispers of the Wild Hunt haunting the dead air.
Seir calmly lifts a serrated dhurive of dark damascus into both hands, writhing phantasms of the Nightmare trailing like smoke from its blades.
Seir takes the haft of the dhurive into his possession, his grip clenching around it and his fingers positioning themselves across its length. Each of his fingers exerts a practiced amount of weight, causing the blade to dip and maneuver with such light ease; yet, it would seem the years and a lack of consistent training readily make themselves apparent as Seir seems to nearly lose the haft before quickly managing to ensure that neither blade touches the ground. As he ensures his control of the dhurive, he offers you a final nod before taking two steps back. His hands shake, yet your smile seems to still him and allow him to press forward with the decisive task: a knee is raised, and the haft brought to bear sharply upon the thigh of the Idreth. The dhurive, much like its owner, shows its resilency in requiring two of these acts to finally break it, but break it does. Resolutely, Seir turns away from you and plants one of the dhurive's blade into a vacant spot within the pillar, lurching forward and lingering in this position for a time before finally turning back to face you and, before long, standing before you once more.
You have emoted: The splintering of wood and bone are the only thing that finally cause a ripple of movement through Sibatti's form, a brief jerk and a tightening of muscle. She exhales loudly, harshly, her shoulders dropping; a weight that had been carried abruptly gone.
SENTINELS NEWS #2481
Date: 5/11/2020 at 4:20
From: Esrytesh Sibatti dur Naya
To : Everyone
Subj: The End
A day I had always assumed was unthinkable has finally arrived. Today, I leave the Pride.
Seir has administered the Sacrament of the Broken Blade and released me from the Oath I have followed since I wandered into Eleusis at the age of eighteen. Today, I bid farewell to the ancestors whose stern guidance taught me all that I know of dhuriv, of reverence, and of unity. In the grotto of carvings, I recalled the sadness I felt the day we lost our connection to the spirit animals of our past, and how the ancestors instilled me with hope that we would arise greater. And we did.
I hope those of you that remain find value in the work that I've done in service to the Pride. Should you require any edits to The Art of Dhuriv or the chronological history of Dendaras corruption, or anything else at all, really - you will be able to reach me by traditional means and I will assist anyone who needs it.
There is nothing more for me to say now, but words I bid you in farewell.
May your vigilance against the darkness of this world never cease.
Hunt them with the brutality you know, unleash upon them the savagery you save just for their wicked ways.
Keep moving, not only to ward away the demons and dogs that nip at your heels, but also to outrun the rot that would threaten the weakest parts of you.
Be cunning and sly. Trap them by knowing your landscape greater than they know their own. Know when to cull the young, and when to demoralize the capable.
Let the beauty of your dhurive blades and the hot, wild blood that drives your movements enrapture them, and yearn to feel so alive as you do.
And when you finally bury your blade in their unbeating hearts, leave a mark so unmistakably inscribed on their damned souls that they wish they could forget your name.
In the words of our ancestor spirits, "Even after our bodies return to the earth, our spirits continue to serve the Pride." As my presence takes me elsewhere, my spirit and my heart is yours, all.
- E. S. N.
Penned by my hand on Closday, the 2nd of Haernos, in the year 487 MA.
You have emoted: Sibatti nods. "Call it."
"Esrytesh dur Naya," Seir says, his solemn expression finally breaking, giving way to half-lidded eyes and a despondent expression. "No longer shall you call yourself Sentinel. You are now severed from our sacred halls, communion with our Ancestors, and the blood bond that we, of the Pride, share with you. We decree your Oath null and void... You are given time now to impart wor--" Nodding his head, he skips ahead to the final part: "Once done, leave this place. However, your medallion first, please." His wooden hand holds the severed haft of your dhurive, whilst the normal takes a position of an open palm before you again.
You give a cracked hematite medallion of the Pride to Seir.
You have emoted: Once buried beneath the layers of pendants at her breastbone, Sibatti briefly runs her hand over the bare space where the medallion occupied. "I have imparted my final words," she announces to Seir, returning to a look of stoicism and severity.
Seir brings the rope of the medallion high and close to his face, assessing it quietly from the corners of his eyes for a moment. Gripping it taut, he seems ready to perform the final act -- yet, what comes is him moving forward slightly, the long fingers of his wooden hand freeing itself just enough from your dhurive to keep your palm where it is. From the necklace, he allows the medallion to drop back into your palm before his normal hand releases it entirely, moving then to close your grip about it. "You've bled enough to fill a thousand of those -- and as one of two who helped bring this rite to fruition, you may walk with it out of here." At this, the man then presses the broken dhurive haft with his other hand close to your chest. "Walk with pride as you leave these halls, Esrytesh dur Naya. They would not be what they are, were it not for you."
Seir gives a cracked hematite medallion of the Pride to you.
(Sentinels): Seir says, "I have performed the Sacrament of the Broken Blade for Sibatti. She has left her final parting words for the Pride. Know that she leaves in good grace and without enmity."
You have emoted: Sibatti sucks in a sharp breath, her ears swiveling away. She accepts both items, but the reverence is short-lived - they are secreted away in a moment, freeing up her arms for her next move - darting forward, she throws her arms around Seir to meet him in a fierce embrace, all matter of protocol and sober ritual abandoned.
You are about to quit your guild. If you are certain you wish to do this, then type AGREE.
Heaving a sigh of resignation, you leave the Sentinels.
Seir seems taken aback at first, eyes widened in surprise. Yet, it takes but a brief moment for the Idreth to return the gesture, his arms wrapping around you and embracing you tightly. Errant tears begin to stream from his face, running down in rivulets upon his cheeks. "You will always be my teacher, Esrytesh," he says, tilting his head towards your own in the midst of the embrace. "That will never change. It never has since that young, arrogant boy came up to you so many years ago asking about the Nightmare..." A rumbling sort of laughter rules his emotions, contrasting by the tears that he has now managed to contain.
You have emoted: Sibatti releases Seir, hopping back spryly but taking a moment to hold his jaw in her hands. "Even in loss, there is a lesson," she says in a quiet whisper. "Thank you for doing me this honor. No one else could."
Seir allows his arms to dip back to his sides, his despondence giving way to a genuine smile at your words. "Of course," he says, blinking his tears away as if the sadness that ruled him through the affair had never transpired. "Shall I escort you out one last time, Esrytesh?"
You have emoted: Sibatti takes Seir's arm, her tail curling up into a gentle arc as she falls into step beside him. "Go on," she urges with a smile. "I am the guest now, mm?"
Before a vine-covered trapdoor.
Covered in spiked, black armor, a midnight black stallion trots menacingly here. Ayani is standing vigil here, grasping her worn dhurive in one hand whilst holding a lit cigarette in the other. There are 4 burly centaur crossbowmen here. Torrents of water twist and shift around the watery form of an undine aquacaster here, masterfully manipulating her element. There are 2 cloaked forestal wardens here. With a stoic expression, a Sentaari monk stands here. There are 2 barbaric satyr shamen here.
You see exits leading northeast and south.
You say, in Mhun, "Keep an eye on things, mm? Keep those ancestors happy."
Seir says in muted Mhun syllables, "Aye, of course. I'll do what I can from afar, as I always have these days... but you... You take care of yourself, Esry."
You have emoted: "I always do," Sibatti says with a wink and a side smirk.