Context, and directly after the events in the following log: https://forums.aetolia.com/discussion/4486/a-prayer-answered-varian-comes-to-duiran#latest
A verdant portal of green fire ignites suddenly in the corner, rising up to become a modestly sized opening.
You step through a rippling curtain of verdant green fire.Beginning of an open field.Many of the stars are disguised behind looming clouds, tracing their slow paths across the sphere of the heavens. The field here stretches half a league in all directions, except in that of the hut. Circling the clearing are rows and rows of trees, some still alive after centuries of growth, and others barely creeping into infancy. Waves of greenery waft in the breeze, flowers and plants and grass all moving as the air whipping through this clearing tugs on them incessantly. A mixture of weathered stones and mossy stumps create a ring of seating around the recessed hollow. A silver tray is set on the ground, several teacups placed upon it. A sunken firepit has been dug into the earth here, its interior cold and absent flame. Haern rests upon the remnants of a mossy stump, hands held easily upon His knees.You see exits leading southwest and west.
You have emoted: Sibatti is tightly dressed with no visible skin, and only his eyes available behind the Yeleni skull he's wearing as a mask. He bears an even tighter stance.
Haern watches as you move through the portal, arriving opposite the cold pit to His position. "You did well with My orders," He informs you. "The Council is nigh impenetrable at this point." His hands tighten at their position upon His knees, jagged nails lost in the bristling, black hairs that swathe His entire body. "I have met with the Guardians."
You have emoted: The nature of Sibatti's apparel is to reveal little in terms of outward, visible body language. Even his tail has been vanished into the heavy robe. He listens, waiting until Haern is done speaking, and then asks, "To puzzle out the logistics of the moon?" Gradually, taking unhurried steps, he moves around the lip of the firepit to approach Haern.
Haern just thought:Omens and portents still churn upon the forefront of His mind, every scrap of information given but another riddle that needs deciphering."Aye, lad, to puzzle out the moon." There's still not-so-subtle disbelief tacked onto His usual grate, though not as prominent now as it was last week. He makes a motion with His head to the smaller boulder situated beside Him. "Cryptic as ever," Haern adds with a touch of wry amusement. "But through that, a path has begun to form."
You have emoted: The boulder presents more than a struggle than if Sibatti had been less burdened, but he manages to sit upon it. He folds his hands in his lap like a man pondering a great puzzle. ".. Will it work?" Is his first, most pressing, ask.
Haern's head follows your movements and that attention remains as the question is leveled. His lips press tight around the protruding tusks of His jaw for a moment, brow furrowing in sync as if the Immortal is divining the answer for you, here and now.Slowly, Haern, the Hunter says, "It has to work."
You have emoted: Sibatti stares forward in silence after this, his shoulders slumped forward and one of his legs beginning to twitch from where it hangs off the boulder.
Haern just thought:An intrusive thought bubbles along the surface of His thoughts: what to call this newly formed Lirathyar?
Haern just thought:He shoves it away; a concern for another moment."Will you lead the ritual?" Haern asks you.
Haern just thought:He has known this man for centuries, and yet, He can't help but wonder if they will be able to do what must be done.
Haern just thought:Of all the things He has asked - no, demanded - this will overshadow everything else.
You have emoted: Sibatti's hand flies to the brow bone of the skull concealing his features, whipping it up so that it's away from and reveals his face. "Me? What.. what needs to be done?" His face goes through rapid emotions: horror, curiosity, trepidation."You," the Hunter emphasizes. His expression offers only grim boding, while the fel green of His stare seems to pin you to that very place with the weight of His reckoning. Haern licks His lips, making an unconscious show of wetting them before He continues, "I will give you directions today that you can set the Council on. In the next week, as I finish making My preparations, I will provide you with an outline of the ritual."
Haern just thought:He won't know what the weight of his duty will entail until the very moment it is required of him. They were very specific.
You have emoted: If there is anything Sibatti seems to weather well, it's the weight of Haern's gaze. His own stare is not quite so heavy, though there is always a certain broodiness about them in this form. "They didn't tell You their price, then," he concludes."I know what it will cost Me," Haern corrects you. "My thoughts were of you.""Will you do this?" Haern poses once again.
You have emoted: "My price, then." Something about this summons the tiniest smile on Sibatti's face. "What's it costing You?"
Haern just thought:No tricks. He might very well sacrifice the world to make this a reality, but He won't stoop to tricks and treachery. Especially upon this man.Haern's features twist into a mirrored smile of your own. "Nothing I will not gladly pay," the Hunter rumbles right back.
You think:[ Something sinks in his gut ].
You have emoted: It's gradual, the way Sibatti's face shifts through emotions, that it would be hard to notice the exact moment his smile faded. He keeps his eyes locked on the great beast of a God next to him, lips slightly parted for an extended moment. Then, "I'd do anything, too. It will be done.""It will be done," Haern echoes a moment later. He exhales a mighty breath, settling Himself once again with a grim focus. "The Council will need ceremonial garb for the ritual," He informs you, all business back in His words. "Ideally, what they choose to wear will reflect something of themselves -of the beast they find most kindred."
You have emoted: "Any other specifics?" Sibatti wonders."Aye," Haern replies firmly. "Whether you use your gut or beg the spirits for answer with divination, each member of the ritual will need to know what animal bests suits them. Give them their answer, then have them hunt it and give it to Raest."
Haern, the Hunter says, "He knows to expect them, and he will begin making up the outfits."Haern runs an appraising eye over you. "I'll leave matters of your dress to your own devices," He decides.
You nod your head at Haern."Drums," Haern declares next. "Something to echo the heartbeat of the Rhythm. They will need to be made, and someone chosen to man them throughout the ritual."
You have emoted: "One beat, or many?" Sibatti clarifies."One. But Esry, I need 'em big." Haern lowers Himself a fraction, leaning in towards you. "You remember that great wolf out on the western tundra?"
You have emoted: Sibatti's brow furrows, concentrating real hard on something. "I... I don't, actually."
You think:[ He knows someone who might, though ].
Haern just thought:That massive, apex predator. He reckons its hide will serve nicely.Comprehension flashes across your face."Ask around," Haern replies, unbothered. "One of you will have to see to the making of the drum, though. Raest will be too busy." Folded up tightly and tucked into the waist of His loincloth, the Hunter produces a thin square of parchment before passing it to you. "Everyone that comes will need to bring an offering for each of the Guardians."
You read what is written on an elegant white letter:[Written in the messy, barely legible handwriting of the Hunter]:
Srahda: Offerings of bright colours, such as small jewels or handmade trinkets.
Vo'acha: Offerings of flesh.
Kree-sa: Offerings of bloodied weapons.
Rhulvok: Offerings of bone.
Griash: Offerings of obsidian or organs.
Takaros: Offerings of teeth, fangs, claws and so on.Insistently, Haern, the Hunter says, "That is six offerings per Councilor, aye? And you'll be the arbiter. It'll be on you to decide if they're worthy offerings, or if they'll pay the price in their blood instead."
You have emoted: Sibatti glances over the letter briefly, finding its contents unsurprising. "Anyone who doesn't bring an offering should stay away, then," he remarks, glancing up from it to Haern.
Haern's nails seem to dig into the flesh of His knees then as His features grow suddenly more severe. "I can only hope that everyone that seeks to attend gives our purpose the respect - the reverence - it deserves."
Haern just thought:He won't let the sacrifices to come be made in vain, or all the sacrifices that have come before this moment.
Haern just thought:Lleis...
You have emoted: Sibatti folds and vanishes away the slip of paper, disappearing somewhere in his stygian robes. "They will, or they will pay their own way in with their life," he vows grimly.
You think:[ A far-off memory not unlike this. He is sharing with Esrytesh the plan to destroy the Sky-Darkener ].Haern dips His head in acknowledgement even as the unconscious snarl threatens to creep forth from the edges of His lips. "You know what you have to do, Esrytesh."
Haern just thought:For now, at least.
You think:[ The same memory, afterwards. The corrupted raven is defeated, but there are no feelings of triumph. A broken spear is dropped in his family's home ].
You have emoted: Sibatti slides off of the boulder with less grace than usual, turning around to stare up at Haern. He wears something neutral on his mien, but his eyes are sharp and his jaw set. "As You will, Boss."
Shifting on the stump, Haern, the Hunter says, "One last thing-.."
Haern just thought:How does He ask this before the thing is done?
You have emoted: Sibatti touches the fingertips of his gloves together, steepling them. A touch of nervousness keeps the gesture from looking entirely natural."What is it...?"Haern meets your resolution with a rare moment of indecision creeping across His countenance. "What will we call it, after it is grown?"
Haern just thought:It will be Dendara no longer, but something new entirely.
Haern just thought:Every attempt at a name falls woefully lacking in His mind. How do you name Life?
You have emoted: Sibatti takes on this question with a fang-filled and feral grin, instantly lighting up his mien from its somber tendency. "I'll tell You when it comes to me."Haern's laugh comes out a grunt that boom loudly from the monstrous Immortal's throat. "Make sure you do." Pushing Himself up to His full height, the Hunter makes a shooing gesture aimed in your direction. "Off with you, lad. You've work to do."
Haern just thought:He has work to do as well.
You have emoted: Sibatti doesn't need to be told twice. He bounds away ungracefully.
Not included in this log - Esrytesh only needed a short time to think on an answer, and gave his recommendation not long after.