Closed make right the time.

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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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make right the time.

Postby Caelum on January 3rd, 2015, 7:24 pm

Like rope on a stallion's neck
Or hope in a poor man's chest
Everything that's broken had to be.

Or like paint on the northern lights
Restraint in a lovers eyes
The perfect pitch of broken harmonies.

My, oh my, god broke sunset on the sky.
- D. Schmidt.




Timestamp: 10 Winter 514 AV


Snow lay thick on the ground and shadows grew out from the feet of the trees, drawing lines through the daylight. A creature of it crouched just beyond the fence line, pine colored horns glittering as they curved back from his temples. Pale brown hair was in need of cutting and spilled into his face, still not managing to obscure the frown he wore. On the other side of the fence milled a dapple grey Windrunner outfitted with the tradtional Drykas yvas. Vega was Caelum's oldest friend and a large, strong horse at that. He had accompanied the ethaefal from one far flung corner of the world to another and was content to nose through the snow while Caelum brooded over animal tracks.


In fact, Vega might have had a rather resigned air.


Caelum held his hand over the tracks and spread his fingers to measure. In his mind's eye he saw a different set of tracks in a very different piece of the world, imprinted into a snowfall long melted beneath the tides of time. Those tracks had belonged to a dire wolf harassing the community of the now dead Denval. A Priest of Rak'keli had shown him the tracks and taught him how to identify them mere hours before they had rushed to save that same wolf's victims. It had been the early hours of Caelum's conflicted relationship with the goddess Nikali and the priest had gone to great lengths to help teach him how to use what were sometimes the most unusual of tools in the effort to heal.


As a man who had spent the majority of his life back on Mizahar traveling, the dust of a thousand roads biting at his heels and those of Vega's as well, he had learned how to do a great many things with very few materials or assistance. All of that had changed since he had come to Riverfall. Now there were things, lots and lots of things. There were horses and herb harvests and buildings and people. People. There were lots and lots of people. People he cared about and worried over and felt responsible for on one level or another. People he couldn't leave, wouldn't leave, when he might walk away from all of the things. Though, if he was honest with himself, walking away from Alements and all of the hopes he had used to build it might be a great deal harder than he wanted to admit.


Unraveling to his feet, Caelum scowled at the wolf tracks -- they were definitely not dire, being far too small to belong to such a nasty beast -- and then turned to jump the fence back into the pasture. Snow crunched as he landed on the other side in a single, fluid motion and whistled to Vega as he turned towards the Sanctuary. He did not mount, but walked instead, the horse happy to amble along beside him after their rather fast-footed run. Alements was being run today by his employees, Caelum having taken a rare day off in order to lend a hand at the Sanctuary's Healing Clinic that morning and then to, well, wander off with Vega into the wind. He did that now and again, set out alone to chase after or perhaps to run from whatever was deviling him. And it wasn't, really, that he felt deviled this time. Quite the opposite. But no matter what way you looked at it, Aoren Skycrown had definitely gotten under his skin.


A short while later Caelum walked loose-hipped through the Sanctuary's gates and into the courtyard, trailed by his Windrunner and aimed at the stables.
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make right the time.

Postby Aoren on January 10th, 2015, 4:02 am

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In a word? Panic.

That was exactly what Aoren was doing right then and there. He was a flustered mess of rushing to put his clothes on. He stood in his room within the Sanctuary fretting over the way the collar of his shirt felt. He wasn’t exactly accustomed to dressing up to the best of his ability. The majority of his time he found himself dressed in simple worn leather leggings with a linen shirt and his dusty boots. Not today though. Today was different. He had gone to great lengths to look his absolute best. His hair was neatly trimmed though he’d found he wore it longer these days. The scruff on his face wasn’t entirely shaved but it was definitely well groomed. He’d washed himself at least twice and he’d even gone to a tailor to make sure his clothes looked their absolute best. He adjusted the sash around his waist then took a seat on the edge of his bed tugging on his boots. When he felt settled the Drykas just sat there for a moment. He took a deep breath to calm his nerves.

Caelum had gone out for a ride into the snow dusted landscape earlier. Something was bothering the Ethaefal and in turn it bothered Aoren because he didn’t know what it was. It also made him impossibly nervous? Had he encroached upon Caelum’s space? Had he said something to upset him? Had he been too forward? The young man chewed on his bottom lip sifting through his thoughts. He groaned flopping back onto the mattress rubbing his face before staring up at the ceiling.

Why was he so nervous?

Perhaps it was because he really liked Caelum. Perhaps it was because he knew he wasn’t very good at impressing upon another person how much he liked them. It was silly and he felt like a bumbling adolescent again but he couldn’t help it. Hefting himself up with a sigh he picked up the long jacket of his outfit and slipped it on. He checked himself over one more time before taking another calming breath. It felt as if there were a hundred butterflies fluttering about in his stomach. He ran a hand through his hair mentally prepping to make a complete fool of himself but at this point he didn’t care. He just wanted to see that moody Ethaefal smile. On the edge of the bed sat a square package covered in cloth and kept together with twine. It wasn’t the flashiest of wrappings but it would have to do. Aoren only hoped that what was inside it was good enough for Caelum. Tucking the box beneath one arm he took a glance around the room before exiting it.

Aoren made his way through the Sanctuary. He kept the box close guarding it like the precious parcel that it was. He meandered toward the stables as that was the last place he’d seen Caelum. He hoped the Ethaefal had come back from his morning venture. As the stables came into view the Drykas spotted Caelum making his way there. He breathed an inward sigh of relief grateful that he wouldn’t have to wait long. The gods seemed to be smiling on him so far. Aoren silently prayed that such luck would continue. He made his way into the stables shortly after Caelum. He stood there for a moment. At a glance the Ethaefal was always striking but that wasn’t what drew Aoren in. It was the just the way that Caelum made Aoren feel. He felt happy near Caelum. He felt nervous and excited. He laughed and he shied away.

Put it simply? Aoren felt normal and alive when around the Ethaefal.

Caelum?” Aoren cleared his throat as there was the slightest of hitches in his voice. He stood there. Awkwardly. He was most definitely not dressed for stable work. The high collar of his grey and white shirt still felt uncomfortable but he chalked it up to just not being used to it.
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make right the time.

Postby Caelum on January 10th, 2015, 7:28 pm

The brush moved in wide, circular motions down Vega's dappled hide. It was rhythmic and flawless, a familiar, comforting adressing of routine as the Windrunner stuck his nose straight down into a feed bucket. Otherwise he released happy shivers as Caelum gave him a thorough brushing down and made sure to pay particular attention to that spot behind Vega's right shoulder. The process had always been soothing. Vega had been his sole constant companion for years, and now Caelum knew in perfect detail what the horse might need or desire. Rather than being overwhelming, it was therapeutic. Vega he had already known, and understood, and been accustomed to taking care of long before Nikali had swayed her hips right into his life and spiraled it right off its projected course.


Caelum felt Aoren before he heard him. It was a collection of desires that had grown familiar over the last run of days. Aoren's needs had seeped into Caelum's routine until he began to follow the map of them as much as he did that of Alements and the Sanctuary. He was slowly becoming steeped in Aoren's ambitions, and he had not decided how to feel about that yet. Most of the time he enjoyed it, but enjoyment in this case was not a decision. It was an expected consequence of spending an extended amount of time in close proximity with another person.


Well, it was if you were Caelum.


"What's wrong?" He asked while pulling the brush in a final sweep down Vega's hide. His eyebrows had drawn together and his mouth curved down. Hanging the brush on a hook he curved around on the worn heels of his riding boots to duck into the stall doorway and bring Aoren into his line of sight. "You're freaked out over something," he continued while slumping where he stood, a shoulder to the frame and head tilting a little to the side as he looked Aoren over.


A hint of confusion trickled in, and then appreciation that took the frown off of his face. "Hey, you look nice. Have I seen those clothes before? Are you going somewhere?" Both eyebrows rose with bright curiosity. "Is it a business meeting? Is that what you're freaked out about?"


For a smart man, Caelum could be remarkably daft.
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make right the time.

Postby Aoren on January 10th, 2015, 8:29 pm

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Aoren took in the sight of Caelum propped up against the doorframe. He looked at ease there in the company of the horses. The Drykas man had to work to bring himself to drag Caelum away from that picture. Still, if this was going to work he had to make an effort and not just float about the other man’s bedroom during the evening hours. There were still a great many things that Aoren did not know about Caelum. He was curious but he didn’t want to be intrusive. He wanted to be close to Caelum but he didn’t want to seem like he was following along the Ethaefal’s coat-tails. It was a befuddling mess of desires that left Aoren horribly confused if he actually sat down to think about all of them. So he didn’t. He just acted.

Uh, nothing.” His voice hitched again. Aoren felt warmth spread across his face in embarrassment. He cleared his throat avoiding eye contact.

Nothing. Nothing’s wrong. I just…I was thinking…well if you aren’t busy. Because I don’t want to impose. I know you’re busy. But I was wondering, you know, if you have time…” Aoren heaved a sigh as he felt his face grow redder and redder by the second. He cleared his throat again looking squarely at the toes of his boots. He brought out the neatly wrapped box that he’d brought with him stepping up to Caelum. He decided it was just better to get this over with.

I bought this for you.” He offered to Caelum the gift that he had spent several days contemplating. What would be of use to the Ethaefal? What did he want? Aoren thought on the first day that the two of them met and the potion that the man had kept in his pocket. He then thought about Caelum’s skills as a knowledgeable physician and of course his role as proprietor of Alements. The thought had struck him then and he’d made his outing into the city to buy for Caelum what Aoren felt would be of use to him given the Ethaefal’s penchant for wandering from place to place lending his services. Aoren waited anxiously for Caelum to open it. The box itself wasn’t particularly heavy. As it passed from Aoren’s hands and into Caelum’s there would be a slight jingling of glassware. Several thoughts raced through the blonde haired man’s head. He clasped his hands behind his back to keep from fidgeting.

Should Caelum discard the wrapping he would find a polished wooden box that had obviously been treated against damage from the natural elements. In terms of size it could easily be carried from place to place being able to fit comfortably under an arm or within a travel pack. It appeared to open in segments with a clasp holding the main compartments together.

It’s a Philterer’s Kit.” Aoren reached up rubbing at the back of his head glancing to the side. “I know you get very busy going from one place to the next. With this you can take herbs and medicines with you without having to rely on your equipment at Alements or the Sanctuary.

Cobalt blue eyes peered into pale amber, warm as the midday. Aoren gave the Ethaefal a smile. He hoped he liked it.

"A-anyways. I was wondering if maybe you wanted to spend some time with me?" Another blush crept its way to the Drykas man's face. He gave a cough supressing his urge to smile.

"Perhaps away from the bedroom?"
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make right the time.

Postby Caelum on January 11th, 2015, 1:39 am

Calloused hands reached out to accept the package from Aoren, curiosity lingering in Caelum's face. He slumped a little heavier against the stall frame and a little smile caught his mouth sideways.


"You got me something? What for? What is it?" He asked what it was even while long, clever fingers tugged at the string holding the cloth in place. Eyes like afternoon light looked up at Aoren and his flushed face before dropping back to the package. "You didn't have to get me anything. I don't know when someone gave me something last..."


He trailed off as the cloth spilled into his hands and he thumbed open the latch on the box to reveal the glittering assortment of bottles and vials and glorious sundry that made up a profesional philterer's kit. As he took in the gift, he was also absorbing Aoren's conflicting desires. It might have been confusing to Aoren, but not to Caelum. He was altogether familiar with the jumbled wants that often made up a person.


A thumb drew down the edge of the box and that little smile he wore deepened unconsciously. It was an almost private expression, one of the rare smiles that the public was not privy to. Oh, they got smiles from him, but not like this. The smiles he wore for most of the world were more like masks.


The box was closed and he pushed out of his slump in order to lean forward and steal a kiss. "I like it," he promised, voice low. He still managed to sound slightly confused. "It's perfect. Maybe now I'll stop breaking medicine vials by the dozens."


He slouched back again, listening to the warmth and rustle of the stables. Aoren was considered for a long moment.


"What would you like to do?" He asked finally. Then he blinked, a few facts settling into place. "Outside of the bedroom?" A pause. He rocked backed on his heels. "Alright..."
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make right the time.

Postby Aoren on January 25th, 2015, 10:36 pm

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Aoren enjoyed Caelum’s private smiles. In the time that the man had known the Ethaefal they were few and far between. That single act told Aoren that he had at least done something right. When Caelum stepped forward to steal his kiss Aoren leaned with him so that it might last just a little longer. When he righted himself the Drykas man clasped his hands behind his back. He smiled at Caelum, the normally cobalt blue irises of his eyes somewhat paler in the winter sunlight.

I know I did not have to get you anything. I wanted to. You’ve given me so much already. It…” Aoren searched for the right words to convey what he was feeling. When he found them his face softened.

It makes me happy when what I do brings a smile to your melancholy face.” He stepped closer to Caelum gently nudging him with an elbow. Aoren would have to have been blind to never notice the fact that this skilled, respectable physician almost always wore a perturbed frown on his face. To Aoren it seemed that something was forever on the Ethaefal’s mind. The Seer in him wanted to counsel. The Healer in him wanted to soothe. While Aoren was both of those things he was also man. A man who was stepping into the role of a lover and he still held several insecurities about that. At the moment the relationship he shared with Caelum felt entirely one sided. When Aoren stepped back to think about it he realized how very little he brought to the table as far as suitability. What was he, really?

He was a foolish dreamer who had left Syliras in search of an adventure. What he’d gotten was an awakening to a world very different to the picture painted from behind the safety of Stormhold Citadel’s walls. He was a man who had seen lives through others eyes but had he truly lived? The answer was no. He didn’t know himself or what he wanted whereas Caelum seemed to know exactly what he wanted and how to get it. It made that day at the bathhouse seem utterly childish to Aoren when he thought about it. He was never usually so careless with his feelings. What could he offer Caelum but words and small gestures? Not much. Not right now. It frustrated Aoren to no end but he pushed those thoughts away for another day.

Would you come with me to Zulrav’s Tower? I know so little about him but I am told he is close to the Drykas people. I would like to know more of him or at least be somewhere tied to him.” It wasn’t exactly the most romantic of places but Aoren felt there was meaning to be found there. Caelum was once a Drykas. Aoren was Drykas at least by circumstance of birth though he knew little of the culture beyond what he’d been able to piece together over the years. His hope was that by finding ties to both of their pasts they could find more common ground in the future. Truth be told? There was still so much about Caelum that Aoren didn’t know. The man clung to his mask of silence and secrecy like a dying man clung to what few breaths he had left. Aoren didn’t think Caelum did it knowingly but still, it was there.
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Postby Caelum on February 7th, 2015, 9:36 pm

Humor graced the ethaefal's face when Aoren nudged him. "Melancholy, am I?" He muttered, and he released a soft snort that told what he though about that. One hand clasped Aoren's arm, keeping him close in a touch that was almost absent minded as he continued to smile the contents of his shining new philterer's kit and how daylight glowed in the glass. It was an incredibly perceptive gift because Caelum was in the habit of carrying around vials of medicines and potions and herbal remedies, even tea packets, in his pockets wherever he went. He hated being unprepared and would consider a grave personal failure should he come across a person in need in his wanderings and not have the proper tools with him to help. On a more selfish level, he also wanted to avoid situations of unfilled requirement as issued by Nikali.


After a long minute, he looked up to study Aoren's face and the shadows he caught hinting at the corners of things. Some of them he knew well.


"Aoren, you have given me more smiles than you know. And this --" He released his grip on the seer and closed the kit, turning the latch and hold it fast before holding it up explanation. "Will bring me even more."


Tucking the kit into an interior pocket of his jacket that would, doubtless, ultimately become its permanent home, Caelum turned to push shut the door to Vega's stall and give a final glance to the Windrunner. His nose was deep in sweet smelling hay and contentment breathed off of him. Satisfied, Caelum turned back to Aoren and pushed him lightly along toward the stable door. Despite his inclination to hesitate and grouch, he was altogether too familiar with the anxious map of Aoren's wants in this regard and so adjusted his intentions to fall in line.


"I'd be happy to go with you to Zulrav's Tower," he muttered. "So long as you don't mind me smelling of horse while I do. We get along. That is, he's pretty alright for a god." That was a high compliment for him, though most probably wouldn't think so.

A smirk sharpened his mouth as they spilled out into the sunlight. He paused there to soak in the day, eyes narrowing against the light that spilled over him like a lover's hand. Any traces of weariness or hunger instantly dispelled, re-energizing the ethaefal as he kicked some of the muck off the soles of his boots.

"Do you want to walk or ride?"

A slight hesitation as ranuri told him Aoren preferred walking so he took a moment to reach back inside the stables and lift one of the water skins hanging on the wall that had been filled fresh that morning. Waterskin in hand, he angled himself at the Sanctuary gates at an easy stroll and waited for Aoren to join him. The cap was popped off the waterskin and he squirted some into his mouth to swish it around and spit out, rinsing away the dust before offering the skin to the Drykas.


"I know the woman who works there with Zulrav's Priest. She's a konti named Shoiss and -- you'll like this -- she's twice marked by both Avalis and Rak'keli. That is, Zulrav even aside. Can you imagine?"
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Postby Aoren on February 8th, 2015, 7:23 pm

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A smile and a shake of his head was all he managed before he was being ushered along the road. He ran a hand over his face then through his hair with a chuckle. Caelum was an ever shifting whirlwind of things Aoren couldn’t yet explain. He supposed that was what made it so exhilarating. He couldn’t predict the Ethaefal. He couldn’t search the man’s past or assess his aura then judge his next course of action. Why? Caelum somehow managed to make a point of shifting all of the focus away from himself. While Aoren certainly couldn’t complain about attention it made getting closer to the Ethaefal beyond a physical aspect a very slow journey. He’d learned that very quickly.

Certainly, Aoren could take a day or two to meditate and explore the depths of Caelum’s chavi but what would be won by doing so? It would get Caelum to open up to him. If anything Aoren felt like that would do the opposite. It would be knowledge stolen and not willfully given. So he would settle for the small victories for now. Making the Healer smile because he’d been given a practical gift. Making him laugh because he found a comment funny. For now those were what was important as they lead to bigger things. As they made their way along the road Aoren reached out to brush his fingers over Caelum’s hair before leaning in to peck his cheek.

I don’t mind you smelling of horse.” Aoren was beginning to think that shaking his head at the Ethaefal’s rather blunt take on things would become habitual. He declined the waterskin choosing instead to reach up and clasp his hands behind his head.

She sounds intimidating. Twice marked by Avalis and Rak’keli? She’s also a Priestess of Zulrav? I can imagine it certainly I just don’t see it often. In Syliras the Priests were numerous but none so diversely favored. There were Priests of Eyris, Priskil, Tyveth, Yahal and scholars who preached the tenants of Sylir, yes. Most of them only possessed blessings from their singular gods though.” Aoren’s interest was certainly piqued. It had never occurred to him how uncommon it was to see people walking around with favor from so many gods. The old cleric Glav Navik had once been rumored to possess more marks from such a wide range of gods that some said to strike him was to incur the wrath of the whole pantheon. Aoren had never had the pleasure of meeting him but he’d heard the man’s wisdom was beyond measure before his disappearance.

Have you ever met him? The only god I’ve had the honor of meeting was Rak’keli when she marked me. Avalis and I have never spoken and though I’ve prayed to several others throughout my life, I don’t think they’ve taken notice.” Aoren shrugged his shoulders. He had the privilege of having met a variety of people who served different deities. Caelum was included in that category being marked by Nysel, Lord of Dreams and Nightmares. He’d met an Isur who was marked by Izurdin. He had even crossed paths with a young woman marked by Ivak. Their walk had brought them to the road leading toward Riverfall proper. It would be a bit of a trek from the Sanctuary to the city. Aoren hoped Caelum didn’t mind. The Drykas would find some way to make it up to him.
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Postby Caelum on February 9th, 2015, 1:55 am

"The Sylirans have such a strict collection of gods." Caelum frowned, but this time it was with thought, eyebrows drawing together as his loose hipped stride was adjusted to match Aoren's. "Do you worship any of theirs particularly? I respect most of them and admire a few."


The walk did not bother him in the least. It was one he made almost daily in his journeys to and from Alements. Occasionally, when the weather was particularly poor, he would ride. Other times if he needed supplies then he would hook one of the Semes up to the wagon and drive it into city the proper. On the very rare occasions that he was ferrying goods, he would borrow Kavala's catamaran, the Dreamcatcher, and sail in. His sailing skills from his days aboard the the Bright-Eyed Mariner were rather rusty though. He had the inclination to improve them, but rarely the time. Besides, he still hated swimming, and it seemed remarkably foolish to keep trying to sail while avoiding actually going into the water.


"Zulrav? No, I've never met him. Not face to face if you will --" And he trailed off because, as if in answer, a breeze had kicked up behind them, as if ushering them with winter's breath down the road to Riverfall. An almost sly smile curled Caelum's mouth and he ducked his hands into the deep pockets of his jacket after flipping the collar up. "But he's our god, isn't he? Or the gods of our people. Your ancestors." He sighed a little. "My descendants. We haven't had a conversation, but we've come together at plenty of crossroads. That, I've found, is often the safest way to conduct a relationship with a god."


A chuckle welled up, full of chicory and hearthfires, and he scuffed the sole of his riding boot at the frost-laden dirt of the road before falling back into step with Aoren.


"Rak'keli and I have met." His voice gentled with the name of the Dark Sister in his mouth, something in the occasionally harsh lines of him softening. His gnosis marks by Rak'keli were partially hidden now what with his hands in his pockets, twin rakinivas emblazoned u pon the back of either hand and twining up both wrists and forearms. They glowed with golden opalescence with which Aoren was very familiar. "Twice in person, and a thousand times if once over the bodies of the dying. The first was out there, among the grasses, when I first returned to Cyphrus in this life. The second time was just under a year ago."


And he grew quiet with that memory, though not with sorrow. With a deep, and wondering sort of joy.


"When did you meet her?" Golden eyes lifted to Aoren's profile, curious.
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Postby Aoren on February 15th, 2015, 9:44 pm

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Priskil and Tyveth have always had my respect. I do not know either of them at any great length but they have my admiration. I would respect Sylir but how does one honor a god who no longer exists?” Aoren shrugged his shoulders. As a boy it had been made abundantly clear exactly what the world lost when Sylir sacrificed himself for the good of all mortals. Somehow the world seemed a darker place but the fact that there were those who still clung to his teachings said something for the ideals the dead god represented, he was still around. If only in memory.

You seem to have had a great deal of experience with the gods.” Aoren was envious in a way. In the whole of his memory he’d only ever been honored with coming face to face with one deity. It was perhaps why he was so enraptured by the idea of it. Avalis had perhaps been present at his birth to bless him with her gift but he did not remember the event clearly. The implication of it was there but it felt distant. Caelum on the other hand seemed to walk arm in arm with the gods. He was one of Syna’s chosen. He was touched and visited by the deities many times over.

I met her in the Fall season of 513. A little over a year ago. It was…terrifying.” An interesting choice of words for a man who seemed to take great joy in the gifts he’d been given.

I was collecting herbs in the Bronze Woods when I heard a frightened screaming. I was drawn to it. It was a young woman being taken by a Drykas raider. I fought him. I almost killed the man though that was not my intention. I was angry. I couldn’t understand why he would steal life away from another person and enslave them. His fellow raiders came and with them a beast that still haunts my nightmares.” Caelum would know well the appearance of that beast. It was the same that he’d torn apart in the dream world not all that long ago.

We ended up fighting the beast together. We drove it off. I thought it would kill us all but we lived. And when it was driven off do you know, I still hesitated?” Aoren frowned slightly. He took a steady breath sharing with Caelum a story he’d told no one before that moment.

I had the skills to mend the man I’d so gravely injured. I was tired. I was confused. I was afraid. And do you know who brought me guidance?” The Drykas man brought up his right hand displaying the Lily of Avalis. He stared down at it with a soft smile. Aoren’s eyes glazed over for a moment as his mind was filled with the thoughts on all of the visions he’d experienced in his life. This was a private moment between he and his patron goddess. When the moment passed he returned to his story.

Avalis showed me that my enemy was a man desperate to keep his family, his way of life, his people, alive. Avalis reminded me that the world is filled with more than just my own perspective. We are all of us moved to walk the road built by our experiences and at every crossroads is the opportunity to learn and make change.“ Aoren chuckled shaking his head casting his gaze forward and to the edge of the city. He drew in a deep breath through his nose before letting it out of his mouth. It was not a weary sigh but the sigh of a man lifting a weight off of his shoulders.

She wasn’t actually there, mind you. But I like to think that maybe she was watching. I say all this because I divined the man’s chavi and learned some of what moved him to the decision he made that day. To take another from their life and force them into his own. When I understood, I was moved to act to save his life. That was when she appeared.” He closed his eyes remembering the experience. It was difficult to put words to everything that had happened but somehow he was managing it all.

The world slowed or maybe it just appeared to. The very woman that I had fought to save, changed or maybe I just saw her truly for the first time. She asked me why I stayed by the side of my enemy. So I told her.” He took another deep breath. He could remember his words as clear as the dawn and so he spoke them.

All of us, no matter our beliefs, our deeds, or our hardships deserve the chance to choose a different road. That is why I would save him. That is why I didn’t flee. To give him that chance.” He almost blushed thinking back on just how bold he’d been before a goddess.

She marked me then with a kiss upon my cheek.” He reached up touching the gnosis on the right side of his face. Aoren was silent for several moments after that. He walked alongside Caelum without any real thoughts in his head. He felt a sense of relief in sharing that experience. The Ethaefal was the first person he’d ever told the full story to. A small blush crept its way to Aoren’s face. He rubbed the back of his head.

You’re the first person I’ve ever shared the entire story with. It sounds like a wild tale, doesn't it?" He chuckled then cleared his throat.

"So, uh, what was it like when you met her? Rak’keli, that is.
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Aoren
Of things long forgotten...
 
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