[Featured thread] Reasons

[Job / Training] Martini always wanted to know why, maybe she was getting closer to it.

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Built into the cliffs overlooking the Suvan Sea, Riverfall resides on the edge of grasslands of Cyphrus where the Bluevein River plunges off the plain and cascades down to the inland sea below. Home of the Akalak, Riverfall is a self-supporting city populated by devoted warriors. [Riverfall Codex]

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Reasons

Postby Martini Elwood on June 3rd, 2018, 2:49 am

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1st of Summer, 518
6th bell
Martini's Apartment


Her shoes slapped against the dirt - faster, run faster - the only thing in her ears. The storm was indeed coming, and only those who heed the warnings would survive, and even then some would perish. Faster, faster, faster! Her lungs burned. The dirt and sand within the high winds slamming into her face as they headed to safety. Keep running, don't stop running. She was tired, exhausted and worn out.

She looked around wildly, her eyes pinpricks as she saw a mass of dirt and felt heat fly toward her. Nearly there. Her mother's hand was a sweaty vice grip that refused to let them be separated. Warmth filled her. It was hard to breath, hard to move. The heated winds roared in her face, daring her to challenge them.

She did.

A large, warm hand kept her from slowing, firm but reassuring on her back. Her father would keep them safe. They would live together after this, survive together.

Or so she thought.

The hand on her back was gone, she realized. She tried to stop, blood surging behind her ear canals. Her mother continued to pull, even as they looked back on her father as he went back towards the direction of the incoming storm.

Don't look back, he had whispered before the warmth on her back faded. And she couldn't even find herself to obey as she watched him. Where? Dad, dad don't go! She would cry, even as her lungs begged for her to stop and rest. Where was he going? Why did he leave us?

It's going to be alright Mart, her mother yelled, her voice a whisper in the gusts that tried to force them back against the storm. Down, go down. Deeper into the tunnels they fled, more people frantically fleeing before and after them into the earth. Don't let go of my hand.

Dad, dad he -

Won't come back!

*****


Martini woke with a sharp inhale and a cold sheen on her brow. Before she could steady herself she lifted from her chair - knocking it back with a loud thud - as she paced frantically away from the desk she had fallen asleep on. Tears burned the back of her lids and her breathing became shallow.

She dropped to her knees in the corner of her space, pleading to anyone who could hear her. Father! Come back, come back, comebackcomeback. No sound left her lips, a silent whisper only the she and the gods could hear. She could feel her heartbeat, the thundering in her ears that seemed much to different with the rush of blood behind them as well.

"Haah..!" She was choking on her own air, quiet sobs leaving her lips as she came to her senses. Broken... that's how she felt. Shattered to the bone after every horrid flashback that haunted her dreams. There were so many ways she kept them at bay, mainly not sleeping.

She would work absurd hours and immerse herself in her projects. Anything to keep away the thought of rest - the feeling of fatigue. Avoiding problems was easy. Confronting them was more difficult.

She would never see the reason her father threw his life away. What could possibly be more important than living for you family? What had him making such haste back into a storm that clearly meant death? More importantly in her mind...

Why hadn't she stopped him?
Last edited by Martini Elwood on June 16th, 2018, 7:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Reasons

Postby Martini Elwood on June 16th, 2018, 7:10 pm

One bell After...


Martini dried her face, tears from the previous bell finally drained and washed away. Though her eyes held all the proof needed - red and puffy from use. Putting away the wash basin, she dressed herself aware that sleep would only bring further nightmares. No, it wouldn't do to dwell on them. Analyzing them was out of the question as memories only brought forth pain. And as far as she was concerned, that's what the nightmares were - painful memories.

Deciding not to leave herself to her thoughts, she packed up her art supplies and secured her dagger and backpack before leaving her apartment. With the door closed and locked and the key in her pack, she set off for inspiration. With early morning settling in, the sun was just barely touching the sky. It was dark enough to be cool but bright enough for her to navigate without hitting buildings or people.

She had no idea where she was going, not by a long shot, but it was easier to draw things you didn't intend to than draw things you did. Creativity was a finicky being - as was inspiration - but nothing good came from forcing either.

Somehow she managed to end up in the - Knirin Gardens - she discovered as she read the sign. It was a heavily foliaged and the greenery was incredibly gorgeous. Flowers of all colored bloomed above, beside, and under her in an array of species she couldn't name.

Mother would have loved- no, she came to relax and destress. She fully intended to do both. Looking around, she spotted some seating a bit away under a large tree. Perfect.

There were very few save for the Akalak awake at this hour who would train and exercise if only given an hour of sleep. She sat down at the bench, the table in front of her holding the items she placed in her backpack.

Putting her paper sketchbook on the table after opening to a blank page, she laid two charcoal sticks on the right of the sketchbook and a quill on the left. Placing the black ink vial to the right of the charcoal, she placed it further away just in case she managed to spill it.

Placing her backpack under the table, Martini inhaled deeply, letting the smell of fresh grass and earth melt her tension. She always had loved nature, albeit not more than art, it was something she would be willing to do instead. She could picture herself in a small house with a patch of land in front where she could grow a flower garden, maybe even a vegetable garden!

Grabbing one charcoal stick from the right, Martini slowly drags it across the blank page. She then rotates the sketchbook about ninety degrees, and repeats the action connecting the end of the first line to the seconds beginning. After two more rotation the square on the pages completely connected. Looking down at it, it appeared her lines where getting better.

They were lighter in color, but they were also much better in terms of straightness and cleanliness. She managed to somehow connect the lines alright, so at the very least she had neat lines and a semi perfect square which would be the base for her drawing. She inhaled again, the fresh aroma further calming her nerves.

Attention drawn back to her work, she pondered on how her layout would look on a small plot of land. She smoothed back a few strands of unruly hair before putting charcoal back on the page. She had a hard time figuring out where to go from the square. After pausing for a few ticks to let her mind wander to what she could draw, she ended up rounding the edges of the square, giving it a more circular feel.

From that point she switched lanes once more and decided to make the circle a scene. She sketched a small portion of water on the lower half, clinging to it she tried her best to make a mountainside. It was basically just a small pool with a square to the right that she would form better.

She formed small cracks and dents in the square, refining it as far as she could so it looked like and actual cliffside. She added loose wavy lines to the area below it - her best mimic of waves. It didn’t have a particular style, it was more so her attempt at mixing a childish drawing and a realistic view.
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Martini Elwood
Painting away Anguish
 
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Reasons

Postby Martini Elwood on June 19th, 2018, 2:46 am

Simple shapes gave way decent structures - from there it was more of refining the piece to look better and more appealing. She drew small flowers on the cliffs side, adding more of a calm look. Small flowers, nothing complicated or particular - just blooming from the outside some of the cracks.

She began to form a woman looking over the cliffside, nothing to obvious as she was to be the afterthought of the drawing. She shaped her, a small sun hat placed upon her head and a sundress to clothe her. Her back was facing the viewer as she looked at the river that was spread before her.

She felt the sunset should be just parallel to the river, clouds blemishing the sky as the sun stretched above. Perhaps she could add color t-

"So this is what you do in you're spare time?" A sweet voice murmured above, the voice making her flinch in it's suddenness behind her. A mop of brunette tresses pulled into a neat ponytail with dark brow orbs analyzing as much as they could see with a piercing stare.

They only lightened when Martini regained her baring and looked up to them. "Mis- er.. Alice. What - what are you doing here at this bell?"

"I could ask you the same thing Martini. Overworking again?" Alice jested as she slid into the seat next to the other woman. Although she could see why Martini could want fresh air, the puff and tinge of red in her eyes the only thing she needed to see.

"Ah," Martini's eyes drifted away from Alice, braking the eye contact as she weighed her options in those few ticks. Tell Alice and relive, or keep silent and forget. The choice was cowardly, but she did it anyway. "Yeah, sorry. Old habits die hard..."

"I see," Alice murmured, her gaze concerned. Not that Martini could see it, her eyes downcast at the drawing. She wasn't blind, Martini wanted to say something but she wouldn't for whatever reason.

Martini found changing the subject simple, for which she was grateful. Alice seemed to let it happen. "You were observing my piece though... was something not right?"

"Well, you have a few proportion errors here," Alice put a finger just above the paper of the sketchbook where the cliffside flowers were positioned. "As well as the body of waters' and hers'. Try distancing yourself from the piece when you look for corrections, as seeing it as a whole reveals more than looking at it in parts."

Ever the learner, Martini pushed the sketchbook away from herself as she looked over the whole drawing. The body of the woman in her drawing did seem a bit big. Maybe if she used shapes other than the basic ones..? How could she have missed the body's scale in relation to the drawing itself?

"I see, thank you." Martini offered Alice a tired smile as she went to correct the mistakes on a new sheet of paper. Her eyes stung from use and rubbing, and she could feel the exhaustion and fatigue settling into her as she got more into the drawing.

It was impossible to ignore the occasional drop of Martini's head as her eyelids tried to sag to a close. No, she couldn't sleep now. Those memories would return if she did. She needed a few days to settle her soul before she cloud sleep comfortably again.
Last edited by Martini Elwood on June 27th, 2018, 3:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Martini Elwood
Painting away Anguish
 
Posts: 126
Words: 83435
Joined roleplay: June 16th, 2017, 2:19 am
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Reasons

Postby Martini Elwood on June 27th, 2018, 2:45 am

Try as she did though the need to sleep overcame her, and she ended up sleeping on a bench in early morning with nothing but her teacher and a few patrolling Akalaks. Her mother wouldn’t have approved. But just before closing her eyes to drift off Martini noticed something odd, an easel - or so she assumed - plagued her mind. It beckoned to her, the atmosphere around acted as if it was a magnetic pull. She could feel it calling to her.

What could it possibly be? The dream felt so real - could’ve been - if not for everything but the easel’s form and hers being highlighted in darkness that surround them. Her path was clear as she strode towards the easel, taking in it’s form. Wooden and almost perfectly smoothed, they easel had yet to see great use.

Oakwood perhaps..? Maybe even maple wood. It looked as if something flat could be propped against the easel, maybe some kind of material for drawing and painting? Just as she was about to look further, her world began to collapse. The easel! She moved to touch it, but it vanished from her sights the moment she’d turned away in panic.

Where -

Her ears registered a whisper, the words incoherent but the force behind them pulled her in the direction of the easels last position. She flinched as she felt something pooling into and out of her hands, but looking down at them she found nothing abnormal. Then that feeling… What is it? More feelings of something pooling to her hands, more looking down only to find nothing running off of them.

“I-Illusion… No - hallucinations..! It can’t be real!” But deep down she knew what the feeling was. She had heard about it after the storms… About mysterious energy one can’t see… Yes, she knew this well, it was what had taken them away after all.

Out, out, out. Get out of here. Go. NOW, Her mind was sounding all the alarms it possibly could. From the goosebumps on her arm, the shaking, her instant thought to run away, or the hairs raising on the back of her neck… Martini knew she was panicking.

And just like that her dream scape crumbled into reality, waking her with cold sweat ad shaky gasps for air. She could hear something like murmuring, but she couldn’t make it out of the beat of her heart. Something about calm and healer. T-The dream… was it real? Had that mysterious flow in her hands… been Djed?

And with that and no warning Martini passed out, the voice of Alice calling for help rung in her ears as she faded into unconsciousness.

*****

The next time Martini woke was a few bells later in her apartment. Alice must have had someone help bring her back… Martini lifted herself to a sitting position on the edge of the bed as she exhaled her frustration. This wasn’t the first time, but she was usually home when she crashed like that. Even so, she felt like something was off.

Whenever she passed out or crashed from not sleeping she always felt stiff and tired, not to mention the fatigue and sluggishness that accompanied it. However, now that she had stood she felt nothing akin to exhaustion or stiffness. The fatigue was gone, and she didn’t feel tired out worn out…

Did she really pass out? Or had she finally gone to sleep on her bed for once..? Her questions were answered when a key clicked into place and her door was opened. Alice popped her head into the crack, a sigh of relief filling the silence as she made her way over to Martini with some fresh water.

So she had passed out then. But why did she feel so relaxed..? Her furrowed brow seemed to alert Alice of her confusion, in turn leading the other brunette to explain the situation.

“You fell asleep at the park. When you woke you started hyperventilating and muttering something about magic. Whatever realization you came to after that was apparently to much to process and you fainted in my arms. I gathered your stuff and had one of the Akalak’s bring you home.”

“M-Magic, eh?” Martini’s shiver of fear didn’t go unnoticed, but Alice opted not to force it out of her until she was ready. She turned away and hugged herself, rubbing her arms to rid herself of the goosebumps that plagued her skin.

“Uhm, do you think you could.. Ah, l-leave? I have a lot on my mind and need some time to finish that piece from the park…” Forced and awkward laughter left her lips as she gestured to her desk which had been miraculously cleaned and organized. Alice nodded slowly, and Martini couldn’t tell but she thought she saw a hint of hesitation.

Nonetheless Alice did leave after returning her objects and key. Martini looked her door before sliding down to let her knees hit the floor as she trembled and chanted to herself.

“J-just a dream, just a dream, just a dream…”
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Martini Elwood
Painting away Anguish
 
Posts: 126
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Reasons

Postby Martini Elwood on June 27th, 2018, 4:05 am

Her trembling had since ceased, but she was still a bit paranoid from the intensity of the dream. It had felt so real, and she could still feel the feeling of... Djed flowing through her hands and out her finger tips. Thankfully it in her mind this time, something she couldn't shake because her mind had yet to fully process it as Alice had said. That said, the fear was still there - something that killed her parents had flowed into her hands after all. How was she supposed to react.

She moved away from her door, using the handle as support as she lifted her weight onto her shaky legs. Forcing herself over to her desk, she dropped into her chair with a soft thump, a relief filled exhale pushing past her lips as she rolled her shoulders in an attempt to release the tension in them. She observed her now organized desk, taking out her sketchbook to the earlier drawing before ripping out the page.

From there she sketched her circle again on a separate sheet, trying her best to imitate her earlier drawing with better proportions. She set out with the cliffside first, using the charcoal stick pulled from her desk drawer to add darker lines in places that needed it. It was odd how relaxed she felt. Inspiration was fickle, but today she had just enough to finish up at least a rough draft before she started on the second. Conveniently enough, Alice had showed up and given her some great advice.

The cliff was coming a long okay as she worked out where the cracks and the flowers would be located, she even made the cliff part the water this time. She added curving to make the water seem alive and flowing, but she was pretty sure it looked more stagnant.

And it was impossible to ignore the nagging feeling that told her that the dream would be bothering her later. She hated it, the thought of using something that had killed her loved ones - Both directly and indirectly. The feeling was sickening, having that... energy flow through her hands. What would she possibly do with it? She didn't even know she had any to begin with!

*crik! plip!*

"Oh for petch sake," She muttered, loosening her grip on the partially cracked charcoal stick and she used her sleeve to dry the tears that tried to fall. She pushed away from her desk as not to ruin her art piece as her tears fell. The petching dream wouldn't leave her thoughts! It had felt so real, and even in waking she found no respite as she usually did. Sleep was the last thing she wanted, the last thing she needed… And now she had to stress about Djed inspired nightmares?

Working seemed so much better than sleep in her position. Overworking meant she had no time to sleep, and that kept her sane as well as distanced from her thoughts. Voluntary rest and sleep was rare for her because of this. What nightmare will be next? Would she relive the past for the remained of her days?

Shaking away her thoughts, she returned to the desk and continued where she left off, burying herself in each line and shape that she made. Now with the charcoaled horizon lowering itself before the cliff, Martini felt it best to add the woman's figure. Drawing the shapes that would make her frame she started with very light pressure on the charcoal.

Once she had the back view finished, she released a sigh, the tension being pulled from her as she looked over her second copy. It looked good, though there was much room for line improvement and style additions. Satisfied with her editing, she reached into the draw and slid a vial of black ink and a quill from inside. Alice had mentioned not starting with a quill, instead using charcoal to get to sketches in place. The quill was best used for writing, but inking was also made possible wit simple strokes to highlight lines of the drawing that should be darker.

After a few rounds of dipping, she was happy enough with the result to leave it to dry. She had managed to keep the drawing smudge free thankfully, so her next step would hopefully be to color the linework. With the smell of ink strong in her nostrils, she opened the door just a tad to let a bit of the sea breeze roll in.

And as she reclined and relaxed, she could help but question the reasons behind the dream.
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Martini Elwood
Painting away Anguish
 
Posts: 126
Words: 83435
Joined roleplay: June 16th, 2017, 2:19 am
Location: Lhavit
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Reasons

Postby Paaie on September 4th, 2018, 9:36 am

G R A D E
Observation +2
Drawing +5
Subterfuge +1
Socialization +1
Endurance +1


Creativity and inspiration cannot be forced
Riverfall location: Knirin Gardens
Martini: Wishing for a small house with a garden
Drawing: Beginning with geometrical shapes
Drawing: Embellish details over simple outlines
Subterfuge: Evading confrontation by changing the subject
Drawing: View a piece as a whole when looking for corrections
Martini: Djed dreams
Endurance: Overworking to avoid sleep
Drawing: Inking over charcoal to add depth
Martini: Haunted by nightmares


1 piece of charcoal


You have such an immersive writing style that really draws out emotions so realistically, and this thread was well worth the featured thread award, thank you for the lovely read.



If you feel I missed anything don't hesitate to PM me. Don't forget to edit your grade request.
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