[Outsiders' Haven] Dream Shadows (solo)

The effects of the return of Ivak felt far away by a displaced Inarta

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Headquarters to Izurdin's Hammer and the entry point into and out of Sultros City, Sultros Citadel is the farthest most outsiders will ever travel into the Isurian Kingdom. Heavily fortified and intimidating to view, the Citadel is the mirror of Isur strength, endurance and patience.

[Outsiders' Haven] Dream Shadows (solo)

Postby Juni on March 31st, 2012, 11:48 am

Spring 5, 512 AV

Juni sat bolt upright.


His heart was hammering in his chest, and he stared for a moment, oblivious to that which was around him. But the sensations were so real – he felt the moisture in his eyes - the terror she had felt holding his heart in a cold grip – a death grip. The sorrow was so intense it made his entire body ache.

Dain’s hand went to his thigh, gently caressing it. “Juni,” he whispered.

Juni’s hands went to his face for a moment, trying to brush away the dream from his eyes. It was already fading. The details were leaving him as quickly as conscious thought could take over his mental facilities. He drew in a deep, ragged breath.

That hand, hard and calloused, but soft in its gesture, rubbed his leg. “Another nightmare?” Dain’s voice was soft too – and low so that the others in the room would not awaken. The seams of the tent showed only darkness, and around the edges of the flap it was only the slightest bit lighter charcoal, where in a few hours time the light of the new day would shine through.

One of the Inarta’s hand dropped to find Dain’s, and quickly their fingers enmeshed. In the darkness, Juni nodded, a sad, jerking movement. Dain sat more upright, his lips coming to plant a light kiss on Juni’s bare shoulder.

“Your sister? And the birds?” Dain asked in a murmur. Juni's head turned so that his forehead was touching Dain’s.

“Yes.” It was all he could manage. The dreams were so painful, they made him feel as if his heart was being ripped from his chest. The physical wounds were horrific, but his twin's terror, and inconsolable sorrow, were even worse.

Dain’s arm wrapped about him and he pulled Juni down, pulling him against his chest. One hand twined into the deep red hair that now glimmered in the sunlight, with all the colors of the spectrum. Juni curled against the familiar musculature, blinking away the tears that never fell. His breathing and heart rate slowed, as Dain stroked his hair.

The storm had passed over Sultros five days earlier. The collective visions granted to the Isur had not been shared by those non-Isur who were in their kingdom, such as the merchants that Juni now traveled with. Those in the citadel of Sultros could only watch in apprehension as the gnosis marks on each and every building flared and glowed, not knowing immediately what it might signify. Nothing good, was the general consensus. But over the course of the day, and the following night, and in the intervening time, the travelers and merchants in the Citadel had heard growing rumors. Isengir lived. No he didn’t. Yes, but only briefly. Some catastrophe. His people had seen visions. Of what? Ivak! Ivak? Yes – Ivak has arisen.

Ivak had returned to Mizahar.

Breckel and Dain and the handful of men they had with them in the Citadel itself tried to piece together these half-baked tales that winged about the courtyard. Each passing hour saw the rumors slowly becoming more credible as they were told and retold, more and more sources confirming that this was the Isur had seen. It was a very uneasy time, and still was, as their Isurian hosts looked at the visitors to the kingdom with a new, cold appraisal. There were some rumors which the Isur seemed to be keeping to themselves. But for five days now, things had remained calm, despite the growing reports of increased Zith activity outside the protected points of entry to the kingdom below their feet. If Breckel had cursed once, he had cursed a thousand times, as he considered the bulk of his caravan which had been left in an encampment near the Shield. So far, with the Isur willing to make inquiries at the other end of the Stalwart Highway, the news had been reassuring. Still, the Zith of the Unforgiving were nothing to pass off as a mere annoyance to traders. So, the merchant continued to stew.

That first day of the new season had been the beginning of Juni’s anxiety as well, though his had been of a much more personal nature. Early in the day, the courtyard hummed with the intense conversations of those who stood looking at the glowing gnosis marks. Juni was silently listening to Breckel and a trader from Avanthal, when he heard them – the birds. Thousands of them, coming together as one unbearably loud voice in his head. He had clapped his hands over his ears, not realizing at first that he was the only one hearing this. With a loud exclamation of real pain, his face had twisted into a grimace as he dropped to his knees. Dain had clutched at his arm in alarm, but it was already over. The sound was gone, and in its place was a dead silence. Many of the faces in the courtyard were turned to the boy who had fallen – stricken with some fit they assumed. Several of the Hammers that were in increased numbers patrolling the Citadael that day, approached Breckel and asked a few terse questions, though not out of any concern for Juni’s health and well being. Suspiciously they watched as Dain helped him to his feet. But within a few minutes, they left the little group, with the order that someone take him inside and put him to bed. Dain had done so, for Juni was obviously not feeling well. His eyes were sparking with the crimson of deep agitation, and before they left the sunlight, Dain noted that the half Vantha boy’s hair was shimmering strangely.

Upon reaching the room they shared with Breckel and the other men of their party, Juni had collapsed on the bed. A very worried Dain sat beside him, asking in the privacy of the room what the hell had just happened. Juni had struggled to find the words to describe it, and in the end had settled on, “All the birds have left. The mountain. They have left.” Still perplexed and no better informed, Dain had let it go as Juni drifted off into a deep sleep.

There was a huge explosion. Rocks were flying everywhere as if they had been made of paper. Huge boulders rained down from the high shoulders of the volcano. The Reverie erupted in flames, the glass shattering and then liquefying. The volumes in the Enclave burst into flames and ash filled the air. The heat was unbearable. The noise unbelievable. Poppy was cowering where she had been caught, in the baths, where she worked. He could see the water popping and hissing as it leapt like a think alive out of the basin and . . .

Gods, the pain! Juni had sat bolt upright, feeling his body scream as the boiling hot water engulfed it. For a moment, his twin was inside his head, screaming too. But not for long.

Panting as if he had just run up the mountainside, Juni's terrified eyes had searched the room frantically for an escape route – and found . . . Dain. His friend’s blue eyes were huge like saucers, as he looked at Juni in alarm. Dain’s hand was on his arm, as if he thought Juni might try to jump out the nearby window. And so it began. Five days – and four horrible nights – each night bringing with it terror and pain and heartache. The birds. The silence. Poppy. Each day saw the Inarta more and more exhausted and drawn, as he faced over and over again the visions of destruction.

Did he believe Ivak was back? Oh, yeah.

Dain’s lips pressed against his forehead, his fingers continuing their rhythmic pattern as they traced through Juni’s hair. The Inarta wrapped his arms about that comforting body and fought to keep his eyes open, for the last thing he wanted to do was to fall back asleep.
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[Outsiders' Haven] Dream Shadows (solo)

Postby Gillar on October 27th, 2012, 8:39 am

Very nice detail!

Lore: Visions of Rebirth - Having experienced nightmares related to the escape of Ivak and the resulting Djed Storm, Juni may occasionally experience reoccurring dreams involving the Djed Storm.
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