Trying to spruce up the congregation with a little conversation, Taiyang decided to throw a party in the Seer's Wood in an attempt to get to know everyone else and have a chance to introduce himself. Unfortunately, because of my own messing ups with the date conversion command, I accidentally posed the date of THURSDAY's Howling instead of the desired Friday. So, when less people arrived than hoped, Tai was delighted when one person showed up. It was a delight to be able to sit down and talk about beliefs and backstory, and @Aisling
is a doll who consistently pumps out five-star material. I hope you all enjoy the read!---Descriptions---
He is a powerful Azudim of Atavian heritage, one of monstrous height, built like an Orgyuk, from the broad shoulders and thick limbs to the dense white fur that covers nearly all of him. His large hands bear scars both earned in battle and carved intentionally, the latter like spiraling suns along his palms, the matching constellations sprawled over his forearms. His features are stern to say the least, a strong jawline, a sharp nose, long, pointed ears - though one is torn, a chunk of the tip lost in combat. The Azudim's left eye has been removed, his one remaining eye an uncommon white in color, bearing only the black outline of his iris and the simple point at the center. His skin is a deep, near-violet color, contrasting sharply with white hair, the latter soft and kept as clean and tamed as he can manage, starting at the top of his head, and trailing down, thinning to a thick line over his stomach and spine as it descends. The lower half of his face and part of his nose are shrouded under a mask of solid white nashka, muffling him when he speaks. Eyes piercing with an ethereal shimmer, he has been touched by the Underking's blessing. The clean scent of a refreshing sea breeze lingers around him - the aroma marking the blessing of the Maelstrom.
(hanging from a leather cord) : an entwined band carved from a wintry icecrystal
(securely buckled) : a soldier's knee-length black boots
(neatly fitted) : black buckled leather gloves
(covering the left eye) : a white-corded eyepatch
(tucked into his boots) : a pair of black, fitted hide breeches
(securely tied around his waist) : a knotted, carmine silk belt
(hung about his belt) : a black belt-hung pouch
(firmly strapped to their jaw) : a half mask of solid white nashka
(shielding the throat) : a quilted, white high-collared shirt
endearing, tangle on his head; coloured in ash blonde roots that brighten tremendously towards a golden yellow at their tips. Brilliantly green eyes gaze around with an air somewhere between mischief and excitement from above a slightly upturned nose. Thin lips seem pressed easily into a grin or a kind smile, with no hint of facial hair to be found anywhere near them. Only the lightest of tans, his skin is defined and sculpted with a layer of muscle that can be seen pressed into easy definition along his bare torso, from pectorals to his abdomen and especially along his thin arms, while a pair of forest-green trouseres that are cut off at the knee cover his legs. Setting him apart from the crowd is a long tail poking out of the seat of his pants from a small hole inexpertly cut into them just above his rear, the prehensile yellow-gold appendage often flicking around in his excitement or wrapping around a leg to avoid any unfortunate accidents. His bare feet drum against the ground in a restless, happy, and somewhat hyper tic, the rhythmic scuffling just at home for someone of his diminutive four feet and ten inches of height. The clean scent of a refreshing sea breeze lingers around him - the aroma marking the blessing of the Maelstrom.
(coiled around the forearm) : a silver star tattoo
(cut off at the knee) : a pair of forest-green trousers---Log---
A wall lined with pillows.
--- Area 678: Seer's Wood -------- v62774 ---
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--- A wall lined with pillows --- -31:1:1 ---
On this smooth sandstone wall is a frieze of the forest outside that is lifelike in its detail. Creatures both large and small prowl through the bushes and ferns that seem to almost glow in the dim light. Against the wall on the floor are a plethora of pillows in all sizes and shapes in a variety of royal colors creating a nice space to sit or lie upon. The scent of incense is strong on the air, wisps of smoke occasionally trailing by from the braziers that are far off, deeper in the temple.
You see exits leading north, south, southwest, and northwest.
You have added yourself to the roleplay list.
You have emoted: Taiyang shrugs and says, "Well, there are not so many people who are awake right now, so maybe we will be reading lots of letters!" He looks up towards Caihong, orange light blazing like fire around his eyes as he beams with determination. "It'll be lots of fun, I am sure." Turning once more, he perks his tail before sitting on one of the smaller pillows and crossing his legs.
Your pose is now set as:
Sitting on a smaller pillow, Taiyang is sitting in a circle of pillows.
You have emoted: As the appointed time draws closer and closer, Taiyang bounces slightly in his seat, looking expectantly towards the southwest as though hoping to spot the first arrival.
Aisling has entered the area.
You perk up visibly.
A biting cold hangs in the air, heralding the arrival of Aisling.
You have emoted: Brilliant sparks of azure and yellow pop up around Taiyang as he rises slightly in his seat, pushing himself up from the ground and raising a hand in greeting towards Aisling. "Hello, mister Aisling!"
You have emoted: Taiyang settles back down, his legs bouncing in a motion akin to butterfly wings as he sits on the smallest of the pillows he has dragged away from the wall.
Aisling's brow furrows at the sparks of color as he approaches, the fur about his neck bristling a hint. He keeps a few paces from the other man, "How are you?"
A distant keening howl seizes your attention, and you stop to listen. It is the sound of some creature, somewhere, experiencing inutterable sorrow. A chill ripples down your spine as the sound trails off, but you remember...
You have emoted: "Well, I feel a little silly after finding out I put the wrong day in the news," Taiyang admits, smiling somewhat sheepishly as a blush colours his cheeks. "I am very goodly, otherwise!"
"Happens. We're all aware of the howling, either way." Aisling says, his voice ever carrying that chest-deep rumble, though muffled by the mask he wears. He glances over the pillows and moves to take a seat himself, bulky form and unpleasant temperature making the man keep distance yet as he lowers. He settles, hands on his lap, "Not many of us about, sadly."
You have emoted: Taiyang nods his head, looking down towards his crossed ankles as he says, "Yeah, I was hoping that I would get to meet lots of people, but I suppose that even two people are better than no people." He looks up and says, "Or even just one!"
"Mis Omei said She would be here, but maybe I missed Her by messing up the date..."
"You seem to be getting along well." Aisling says, gaze drifting as he looks upon the rest of the room, the statues nearby. "I know I see you about the city often."
You have emoted: Taiyang shakes his head as if pushing away an unpleasant thought, brightening considerably as he nods and leans forward slightly in his enthusiasm to say, "Yes, yes! There's lots of kids around who are a lot of fun to play with, and I've been able to find plenty of cool things that I'd never seen before. There's a huge number of trees in the temple with a lot of good fruits, and I'm slowly meeting more and more people around the city."
Aisling finally turns his single-eyed gaze back to you, lingering, "So I hear." He rumbles, mask shifting somewhat with the words, "I am glad. Enorian suits you, a friendly, peaceful place."
You have emoted: "Right! Though, it's because of people like you, I believe, that it is able to be friendly and peaceful." With a curious tilt of his head, Taiyang looks up towards you as though considering your frame, slowly nodding to himself as he comes to some inner conclusion. "I think all the people who are like you, who are strong and fight for us, make it a good place for people like me to live."
"I would like to think so." Aisling says, not quite in agreement, one hand rising to idly scratch at his stomach. "Do you know much of soldiers, sir?" He asks, staring yet, bordering on impolite in the way he doesn't avert.
You have emoted: Taiyang shakes his head twice and admits, "Even when I lived in Bloodloch and the Primus told me that it would help her if I fought alongside everyone else, I did not enjoy it. There were lots of people who would want to fight, and spar, and train, and...I am not sure if they are soldiers or fighters, or if there is a difference." He purses his lips, thinking on it for a second before asking, "Is there?"
Aisling hums, "A fighter is someone who fights. Simply that." He explains, a brief pause following, "A soldier is someone who marches, who follows orders, and ultimately, who serves something." The man's gaze remains, hard and steady, and sharp, reminiscent more of warhounds of the Carnifex than men, "I don't like you, a lot of the time, did you know?"
You have emoted: Taiyang blinks, a rare gesture, and his shock is evident for a few moments before his shoulders slack and he quietly says, "N-no. I thought that...well, I did not think that we were very good friends, but I did not..." He trails off quietly, and then just as quietly leads back in, "Did I do something wrong?"
"The soldier's paradox." Aisling says, seeming unmoved by the man's shift in mood. His tone isn't rude, it doesn't even touch anger - it is polite, "Soldiers fight so that people can play, and enjoy themselves, and have peaceful lives, and in doing so, the soldiers lose their own ability to... Relate, to peaceful, calm living."
Knight Aisling dur Naya says, "You avoid the horrors of the world, and I am fighting so that you can do so, but I cannot relate, and the ignorance makes me frustrated."
You have emoted: Taiyang listens on quietly, eventually lowering his head and shaking it. "I...I am not ignorant of it, mister Aisling. I know there are truly, terribly awful things out there. People who would take another's life as property, and people who do terrible, awful acts that would make even the Gods turn Their eyes away." He grips the legs of his trousers and says, "I...I can't face it. For my own reasons."
"I would become just like them. A monster." Flashes of dark crimson and bitter, angry orange. "Those monsters, they deserve the worst of things. They deserve punishment, and every badness that someone can dream up, and I do not WANT to dream up those things." Fear, hot and poignant stabs like a knife in his gut, "I do not WANT to become a monster like them, I do not want to have to face those bad, awful things."
You have emoted: Taiyang loosesns his grip on his trousers and reaches over to grab at his side.
Aisling leans forward slightly, forearms resting on his lap as he stares, trying to catch your expression. His head tilts slightly at something unseen, "You're afraid of being hateful?"
You have emoted: Taiyang's shoulders stiffen, and then release, and he nods his head, raising his face to show it is drawn and sad, eyes half-lidded as he quietly says, "I do not want to become something bad, when there is so much good that I could do instead. There needs to be kindness, and love, and joy, and...it is hard!" He laughs, lightly and smiles up towards you, though the smile is wan. "Sometimes, I think very bad, awful thoughts and I have to try very hard to stop and think of good things instead. Try to make better ways, and not be...bad."
Aisling doesn't smile, something visible despite his mask, by the way his eyes don't pinch at the edges, or his mask doesn't shift. "Do you think me bad?" He asks, sincere, no accusation.
You have emoted: Taiyang thinks about it, perhaps for a bit too long, and then he says, "No. I think you are a person who can think of what is right, and what is wrong, and make judgements very quickly. I think you can do things that can hurt other people, but I do not think you are the type of person who would do a truly, very bad thing."
Knight Aisling dur Naya says, "What is truly, very bad?"
Simply, you say, "Wicked things that are hurtful for the sake of being hurtful. To torture, or...or...enslave. Worse things."
"... I think we disagree on righteous anger." Aisling says, quietly, hands coming to join on his lap, as he tugs at the edges of his gloves, as to adjust them. "Though I am not angry when I fight. It may just be you feel things very strongly."
Colour fades from a striking, brilliantly coloured qilin's coat as the light of day begins to permeate your surroundings, leaving him streaked with shadows that flow hungrily.
You have emoted: "...sometimes, my feelings are a lot bigger than what it feels like my body can hold. Good ones make for very good things, but bad ones make me feel like I am going to explode." Taiyang's eyes fall to the side, looking at nothing in particular.
"What are the Illuminai teaching you?" Aisling asks, "Some training may help steadying you."
You have emoted: Taiyang reaches up and rubs at the back of his neck, "Well...nothing yet. There is still a lot that I am re-learning in how to be alive, and mister Tenshyo says that I can start my training when I am ready. But I do not know when I will be ready, because I am still just now learning again how to dream."
Knight Aisling dur Naya says, "Have those come back, at least?"
You have emoted: Taiyang nods his head, or at least begins to, biting at his lip in a thoughtful manner before saying, "Well, a little. They are mostly colours and feelings right now, and sometimes I see...a face? I think. And other times a hand, and a fireplace, and sometimes there is...something like darkness, but it is not all black, because there are little bits of light! Like a very, very dark blue, with lots of sounds."
Aisling stares, on and on, "Tell me of sounds." He requests.
You have emoted: Taiyang closes his eyes, and his excess energy seems to drain out of him and turn him into a little statue as he puts all his energy towards remembering, "There is...a sound like...wind. And there are steps, very hard. I think they are on stone?" He pauses, listening, a frown furrowing his face. "Someone is saying...something, but I do not know what. And then someone starts crying, and I do not know who. It makes me sad. They go away, and then there are steps again, and something very...screechy. Rusty metal? There are too many steps for one person. And then I wake up, and my tail is normally sore."
You say, "At least, in that weird dark dream."
"Probably from moving." Aisling comments, taking a small breath. "Do you remember much of your past?"
You have emoted: Taiyang shakes his head twice, and then a third time after a moment of thought. "I remember escaping from the slavers with a broken tail and a lot of head bleeding. I like to think that sometimes, when I am dreaming of the fireplace, I am trying to remember my old home."
Aisling's head bobs in a faint nod, agreement. "That might be it." He murmurs, "Focus helps, if you seek to remember, I suppose."
With a little bit of hope in his voice, you say, "Miss Omei's land is the land of Dreaming, so I am hopeful that as I learn and grow and discover new things about Her and help more of Her people, that my dreams will be clearer and I'll get to find out who I was."
Knight Aisling dur Naya says, "If anyone can do so, I suppose it is Her."
(Tells): Wafting, as if on the air, Rihrin's velvety voice reaches your ear: "Been settling into the guild and city well?"
You ask, "...what made you want to come to Her, mister Aisling?"
Aisling stares, no response forthcoming, at least for a few moments. He considers, and the words come slow, firm, "I wished to be softened. That I feel too distant to folk like you. That said, I told Her I cannot offer Her loyalty, not with the current matters of Albedos." He explains, "So, I just sit as a congregant."
You have emoted: Taiyang places one hand over a silver star tattoo, rubbing it thoughtfully with a thumb as he considers your words. "Then...is the congregation not all of Her people?"
"There is the congregation, and then, there is Her Order." Aisling answers, reaching up as to adjust his mask idly, taking care to keep the lower half of his face shrouded as he tugs on the straps, "Her Chosen and closest."
Knight Aisling dur Naya says, "Privy to certain things congregants are not."
(Tells): Your voice like the wind itself, you tell Rihrin, "Oh, I am sorry! Yes, I am settling in very well! I am just at a talk with my congregation right now, I did not mean to ignore you."
(Tells): Wafting, as if on the air, Rihrin's velvety voice reaches your ear: "Oh! You are fine. I'm just..eh..trying to be social. I'm not too good at it yet, so practicing."
You have emoted: Taiyang's eyes widen in understanding and he frowns in confusion before shaking the same emotion away. "So...if you are hoping She will help soften you, then what do you imagine you will be like, after? How do you think you will be different, other than being able to be closer to people like me?"
Aisling keeps a hand against his mask. He continues to stare at you, sharp as ever, stern, and unpleasant even in a polite, neutral expression. "I do not know. I do not think it possible, but I owe it to some folk to try." He rumbles.
Knight Aisling dur Naya says, "I am a soldier yet. I need to be harsh, yet."
You have emoted: Taiyang's smile, as it comes, is soft as he looks up towards Aisling, "But...you do not want to have to be all the time?" He closes his eyes and exhales very lightly, his smile growing just a touch. "I think...that if it were not possible, you would not even think of trying. You would just be harsh, and think it was silly or not worth your effort. But I believe that you will be able to, mister Aisling, because of the fact that you want to. And I may not know much about chaos, or dreams, but I do know that if you want to do something, then choosing to do it is the most important part of it."
"I can't be soft, and do what I do." Aisling says, easily, "I am harsh, even to those closest to me. I love in the way soldiers do, in violence and duty." Then, he reaches for you, brushing cold, gloved fingers on the man's arm, "Just as you feel like blowing up with anger, or how easily you smile. You would lose it in short order."
You have emoted: Taiyang's flesh visibly rises in the tell-tale bumps of goose-pimples, but he ignores it as he looks up at Aisling with conviction. "I think, then, mister Aisling, that just like a mask that you must wear, you will one day be able to slip into your harshness." He brushes his fingers against the belt sash of his trousers, where the hard edge of a bone mask can barely be seen, "And when you take it off, you will be able to be...maybe not as soft as someone who is like me, but a softer you. Someone who can have true, good smiles that come easy around the people you love."
"I hope so, for my beloved's sake." Aisling says, and then, adds, withdrawing his touch, "And I hope you will remember yourself, and perhaps get a handle on your own feelings."
You have emoted: Taiyang nods, and slowly rises. "I am sorry that..." He looks around and the other pillows he had arranged nearby in their neat circle, wincing slightly as he says, "Well, I wish we had had more people here, to be able to learn more and become good friends. But I am glad that you came. It means a very lot to me, even if you do not like me sometimes."
You return to a normal position, relaxing the pose.
"I do not like very many people, sir." Aisling comments, and likewise, he rises, towering and bulky and unpleasant in most ways. "I am sure you are not very fond of me, either, in your own way."
You have emoted: Taiyang grins and rubs the back of his neck, "I think that maybe there is some part of me deep down that feels that way, but I do not listen to that Taiyang anyway, so I will continue to like you." He turns and begins gathering pillows, returning them back to the wall as he comments, "And I am sure one day, even if we are not the bestest of friends, we will be close in our own way."
Aisling nods once, and turns to help, large grip easing the pillows back up against the wall. "You'll be going home, then?"
You have emoted: "I think I will...rest, for a while. I am a little disappointed, but I think seeing my squirrel friends and napping in my old favourite tree here in the Wood will help me feel less." Taiyang turns and moves to get more pillows, but stops as he sees you have taken the ones that were remaining. "If you are, though, be sure to walk safely."
"I must go back to my patrols, yes." Aisling says, patting his hands on his trousers. With that, he turns and walks off, his stride an even march, "Be well."
Aisling leaves to the south, the bone-chilling air slowly dissipating.