A Hero’s Threadbare Cloth

Who can act when the Warrior of Light cannot?

[Highly recommend completing the Dark Knight job quests through to lv80 and taking a gander through the Firmament. Otherwise, this isn’t gonna make a lot of sense.]

I thought our heart was quelled of this anger, yet here we are again. 

Though, it seems you have been busy in this time of peace. While our hands tremble, the snow is gently blanketing the many homes you yourself helped to construct. They are home to the many needy of Ishgard. People like me. People like you. People like us. 

But, you did not expect to see him in the infirmary, did you? You did not expect him to survive.


Count Edmont is happy to see you, though worried as you came knocking in the dead of night, during a snowstorm. With Emmanellain overseeing Camp Dragonhead, the house is quiet. Artoirel’s worry mimics his father’s as you apologize for the intrusion and ask only for the key to your room – a room on the lower floor, a floor servants and bastard children. 

Artoriel protests, insisting you stay in the guest room where it’s warm, and that he’ll have food and a doctor by before the hour passes, but you decline. All you want is sleep, and with Edmont putting a gentle hand on your shoulder, he dismisses the oldest son of House Fortemps to allow you your repose on your terms. 

Everything is just as you left it as you crash into the burlap sack filled with little more than straw and discarded wool. The sheets are still cold from him, though the moonlight catches a single silver-blue strand of hair on the pillow. 

You cannot steady yourself from this, can you? You have conquered over man and god, yet a single bloody stray hair has cracked you in two. Wipe your face.

The unsteady gait of Edmont grabs your attention and you open your door to him, a tray of leftovers. He dotes on you like a father does a sick child as he settles your food on the poor excuse of a table. He brushes back your hair and asks you if there is anything he can do, but you insist you’re alright, weary from your trials, and painfully homesick. He tells you to come home more often, you try to protest, but he insists, and then wishes you a restful sleep as he dries the tears on your face with his fingertips.

What would he say if you revealed what you saw earlier today? What would he say if he knew in our heart what you wanted to do?


The snow has subsided. The Firmament is bright, cheery even. Today you are lending some of your time to the infirmary, being one of the only white mages to leave the Twelveswood, your skills are a blessing upon these people. 

If only they knew that you were only here to watch the elezen groaning on his cot, his head bandaged, limbs weakly trembling for succor. You watch for hours, wanting the facade to drop, but everyone only suspects it is a man injured, left to die in the snow, and lucky to be found and brought here. 

Before you depart for the evening, you stand over his bed. You watch his pained breaths as he clutches his chest. His lips do not smirk as they did when they peered upon you as an outcast to the world. His voice, which now cries out while locked in nightmares, does not echo with the malice tempered by a primal. 

Are you going to murder Ser Zephirin de Valhourdin, who lays in a stupor, gravely wounded, in the firmament infirmary? Is that why you called out to me again? Do you need the strength to draw your blade across his neck? Or should it be a spear to the gut? Your hands would tremble at the blood that drips from the wound. Perhaps it should be poison. You could even be the one to pass it over his lips with a smile, then watch the blackened sick cross his lips and you stand over him, watching the dregs of his life cast away. 

Are you looking for justice or vengeance?

Don’t you remember that vengeance is what got us here in the first place?

I will do this for us. Decide on his fate, gather the tools of his execution, then cast yourself to the night. I will do the rest. 

Count Edmont has come to the Firmament to fetch you. People are calling out our name. Best not be seen lingering here. 


Our favorite little fool is back. She hesitates your hand as you reach for the door of the infirmary. She begs us – return to Fortemps Manor. Summon Emmanellain to mock. Reveal the truth of Captain Carvallain to House Durendaire. Leave Ishgard! Anything!

Still, as you lay in the bed you shared, take meals in the home he opened to you, and hear his voice in the words of his father, you cannot stop thinking about it, can you? 

You need me, now, more than ever. 

I will end this. 


Good morning. The sun is rising over Ishgard. We truly thought of everything. You left a change of clothes nearby.  Careful as you stand, you would surely live to regret if you painted his gravestone with blood.  Or perhaps, you want to? But, alas, I feel myself finally starting to fade. Our breath has finally calmed, our heart no longer threatens to burst from our chest. 

Cast your bloody robes into the yearning chasm along with the sword clutched tight in your hand. Wash yourself clean with the snow, then pitch it over as well. Now, we shall be entwined forever more. I won’t be able to stop you next time. 

He knew. He cried out for mercy, Warrior of Light. He knew, and we did not care as we took his life. We did it with a smile, for a smile suits a hero. 

Isn’t that right?

Coffins

The other night, this happened.

[FC]<Kiyohime Sakura> the level 1 job quest should really give you a coffin or something
[FC]<Mifee Brew> something to bury our future enemies in
[FC]<Kiyohime Sakura> I meant a coffin of equipment but that works too xd
[FC]<Meilin Kikkano> coffer, ya goose
[FC]<Cecile Lothaire> LOL
[FC]<Meilin Kikkano> coffins are full of dead people
[FC]<Meilin Kikkano> coffers are full of gear
[FC]<Kiyohime Sakura> o
[FC]<Cecile Lothaire> so, ya want a nice coffin. ROFL

This got absolutely stuck in my braincase, so I wrote this. Sorry Kiyohime.

    The glow of the several taverns leaked out into the alleyways, both in light and noise. A small woman dashed to and fro from the lights, poking her head into the doorways before apologizing and dashing along to the next one. Her tail peeped from the bottom of her cloak, following her head back and forth as she traveled. 

    Finally, she spied what she was looking for, and dashed over the threshold of the door. 

“I have solved all of our equipment problems!” Kyio slammed a sheet of paper down onto the tavern table in front of a party of three “A dungeon full of coffers! The client only wants one marked with a family symbol, and the rest are for us to do with as we please!” She crumpled the paper up to her chest and sighed before anyone had a chance to look, her hood sliding back as her pink ears flicked in excitement. “Finally, some armor that isn’t falling apart, though, they asked for this to be completed discreetly so I guess I have to go alone? Cecile, can I borrow some bolts?”

    Cecile slid a package of bolts across the table barely looking away from her glass, one white fur trimmed ear turned to Meilin and Mifee, the other flicking away with a dismissive air. The group  waved Kyio off for luck, but there was a growing uneasiness that something was wrong.

    “Did… did anyone get a good look at that posting?” Meilin put a finger to her lips in a desperate act of concentration between the three large mugs of beer empty at her place. 

Continue reading “Coffins”

Forgiven Lilies – Beginning

Content warning: The full text of Forgiven Lilies is rated 18+and will include themes that can be considered uncomfortable for some.

Don’t like? Don’t interact.

Dragging herself across the silt was the Warrior of Light. Emet-Selch wondered how she even managed to get so far in this state. She had blinded herself with haphazard strips of bandages that wrapped around her head, but they did nothing to stem the blistering white tears that arched down her cheeks. Light-charged vomit was on her lips and stained down her neck. Emet-Selch watched her crawl across to the marble floor leaving a messy trail of light in her wake. Her broken cane was still clinging to her tunic as it dragged alongside her, the few remaining armored nails of her gloves helped her grab at the muck of the seafloor, but now as the marble tiles took over, she found it hard to keep her pace. 

    “Here you are, as expected.” He shrugged his shoulders. “Hurry now before you continue to mess all over the floor.”  In response, she moaned and choked up another series of blindingly white vomit before collapsing against the stone. 

    “Really now, you’ve come this far and you can’t even make it through the front door?” Emet-Selch sauntered over to the body curled on the floor, the puddle of fluorescent sick growing ever larger. “I invited a beast, a monster!” She groped blindly for the hem of his coat until he kneeled and hefted her into his arms. “Instead, I received this broken husk of a mortal” She cried out but he only turned her head into his chest and walked her into the false din of Amaurot as he huffed.

Silent Child

The child was born into silence.

The mother labored with quiet grunts.

The father watched on, gently tutting on his pipe.

The midwife’s voice was the only sound in the room. She encouraged the mother along, and the child was born in near silence. She did not scream when she was born, perhaps she softly cooed. Only when she was placed in her arms and began to nurse did the child make a sound, and the mother gasped.

The new family of silence.

The father was once a knight. He had been injured. He wanted the silence.

The mother was nobody. She learned silence from his hand.

The child knew nothing but silence. Her mother did not sing to her, her father did not tell her stories. When she fussed, as all babies do, her mother rushed her from her father and scolded her. Soon, she too learned silence. When she was hungry, tired, wet, she wiggled in discomfort. Her mother, always nearby, softly turning pages in a book, or silently knitting, tended to her, and they returned to silence.

The child had no toys but her own fingers and toes. She was not swaddled in playful fabrics.

Her world was quiet.

When the child was old enough, she was allowed to go to school.

Wataza’s Backstory

Melyion demon!

The priests quickly removed the stone from his palm, and hurried him into the great shrine.

He heard no voice during the great ceremonies. No voice answered his prayer. On the way back home, the priest told him they would try again next year, but he must commit himself fully to Balor in the coming months.

At night, he dreamed about that stone, that warm, brilliant stone, with the blue etchings he seemed to know.

That year was rough. The priests shaved his head, and began harsh mediation sessions. He fasted for weeks, he meditated through nights, and all the while, that stone slipped into his thoughts. One morning, during a fast, he heard a little voice in the dusk. Something small and crying. He broke his meditation and followed it. He ran through the tangled overgrowth of the shrine garden, down into the nearby town, chasing the little sound.

And there, in the dirt of the town square, he heard it loudly.

“I’m here!” it cried out.

He bowed his head to the passerbys as he wandered closer, something in the dust crying out to him louder than ever before.

There it was. The red stone.

He shoved it into his robe and ran back to the shrine. It talked endlessly as he sprinted. It thanked him over and over again as he rushed back into his room.

“Shh. Someone will hear you!” Wataza whisper barked to the gem in his hand.

“No they won’t.”

Untitled

“My lord…” She cleared her throat. He didn’t budge. “My lord, you’re going to suffer summer sickness if you sleep in the heat here.” She put her bucket by her feet, debating if she should kneel down and touch him. “My lord.”

His breath was smooth and even. He was far away in his dreams. Laurel almost felt bad as she got onto her knees and reached out. “Lord Saeran.” She whispered, hoping to wake him gently. Her hand made contact with his shoulder, giving him a tiny shake. “Lord Saeran.”

He moved far too quickly for her to react. His hand shot out like from a bow and clamped around her neck. She took a sharp breath inward, the lack of air she could take in as Saeran’s grip grew tighter. Her own hands grabbed around his wrist as she made a gurgling sound. Saeran’s eyes were empty as she beat at his hand. She kicked her legs out, knocking her bucket over. Nothing was getting to him as her world started to fade at the edges. She could feel spit eking from the corner of her lips as she tried to make words.

“Sae….ran….”

Laurel’s world went dark.

Poetry: Puppets

Where we met, I forget.

But it was there I took your hand and tied a string around it.

And when I got upset, I pulled the string to forget all my pains and woes.

You would come to meet my hand.

Like a puppet on a string.

If the line would go slack, you would always come back, and life was good with you and I.

My puppet on a string.

There was another I soon forget, one we took in our hands and gave him strings as well.

We were a sight of endless delight

Three bodies tied by strings.

On the string between him and I, a silly little ring.

A promise little ring.

My dear puppets on their strings.

Time did pass but we did last, we tied up hundreds of strings.

Some were frail, some were strong, some we kept very long.

They were our friends, but none as tight as the bonds that bound the first string I tied between you and I,

My favorite puppet on his string.

But the string bound around that ring?

One day when the line went slack, I pulled it back…

Only a shell came back.

I took my strings and tied them tight, to make him dance for my delight.

So I would not crack, I brought him back.

A ghost upon sorrow strings.

I made him dance, I made him sing, I hid behind him, pulling the strings.

To hide my heart from falling apart.

Me and my secret on a string.

Yet again time did flow.

Now it’s just a story few know.

I hide my heart a long ways apart.

My hidden doll on his strings.

Trapped behind a wall of sorts, a barrier he can not cross.

To a place where puppets should not be.

Where all beings should be free.

He still remains, I dare not part,

Still protecting my fragile heart.

Though I should give up his strings and put to rest

That empty, silent shell… would be best.

A puppet master with empty strings.

Other strings tied to other things, promises they do speak.

Of how the strings that have been tied between them and I

Are just as strong as the first string I had tied.

So maybe I can give up my dear shell.

Goodbye, soon, my puppet on his string.

You know the worst part?

My favorite puppet on a string…

If the same were to happen to you…

I would not hesitate to slice the strings to my doll.

Let the painful memories finally fall.

In this place where he does not belong.

I’d tie you to me, like it was all along…

Just you and I.

To hide my heart.

So I would not fall apart.

I’d make you dance, I’d make you’d sing.

And lose myself upon your strings.

Would you be alright?

If I turned you into my doll?

Because I could not stand, if you did fall…


Thunder Rolls

Flash. The storm begins. Old women cross their hands and aim them to the sky. Old men lower their tools, their hats, their heads. Mothers find their children and lead them to canopied safety while their wide eyes watch as the young and strong begin their work.

Crack – of both thunder and wood. The men work without a word, repeating the motions they have seen. The action is imprinted at birth. Almost.

Continue reading “Thunder Rolls”

The Tale of the Feeshdragon

THE TALE OF THE FEESHDRAGON.

One day, the fragile princess Pepnpenkun was in her tower when a terrible, huge, feeshdragon, known as the terrible feeshdragon Erin, came looking for ingredients for princess stew. With a swipe of his massive, feeshy claws, he kidnapped the fair lady!

At first, the kingdom sent a group of four, red garbed, axe wielding warriors which were promptly eaten.

Continue reading “The Tale of the Feeshdragon”

The Siren Meets the Sarooth

This is the next chapter following The Daughter of the Laurel Tree.

Small terms that may be unclear since I haven’t posted the prologue chapters yet: Siren – a large half bird half human creature tamed by the Daliquor. They are considered incredibly exotic, and a symbol of human’s ability to triumph over the Melyion as the original siren, which all siren were born from, was his wife. Siren goods are rare and expensive, and masquerading as a siren is usually reserved for a woman of extreme noble rank, toting herself as ‘exotic’.

Sarooth – a panther like creature with deep, black fur. Inhabits most forestland but are masters of stealth. Are incredibly strong and considered ‘noble’ creatures.

Laurel was no stranger to the drink, however, she was a stranger to wine. She drank the glass in a single gulp. It dulled the pain that lingered in her chest. She shuffled awkwardly, trying not to trip in her heeled shoes, back to a maid to dispose of this glass and gain another. This one she held for a moment.

Her eyes scanned the room in their haze. Hundreds of people, thousands maybe, all dressed in elegance, clad in masks. She looked down at the deep green dress she was wearing, the sleeves that hid the scars on her arms of the same color, she could even see the hellish shoe peeking out under the bellowed skirt. She didn’t feel like herself. The dress was made of such fine materials, things she could have never afforded, it made her uncomfort worse.

Five days prior. Ryo had come with materials for her, only to find her in hysterics over her father’s body. She could barely form a sentence as she stammered through her tears. Ryo assured her he would take care of everything.