Solo [The Valkalah Library] Once Upon A Story

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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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[The Valkalah Library] Once Upon A Story

Postby Ayatah on March 15th, 2015, 8:14 pm

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23rd Spring, 515AV

The children's section of the library was empty, much to Ayatah's relief. Only a lone Akalak sat in the basement floor, reading some obscure book to himself. Kuame glanced cautiously towards the purple man. They still confused him, all these strange-coloured men that defied common sense and logic. Fortunately, he was both young enough and adorable enough to get away with staring and asking question ("Have you eaten lots of spinch, is that why you're green?). Most of the men simply laughed at him, some went along with his crazy hypotheses whilst Aya silently apologised for her son's directness.

"Does he take after his father?" One Akalak had asked suggestively, and it took Ayatah a full chime to realise that the blue male had been flirting with her. She had hurriedly replied, "maybe, I've no idea who he is", and scurried away, tugging Kuame in toe and turning a bright shade of pink herself.

In Ayatah's books, her days of romance were far behind her. She had even not entertained the idea of taking on a lover since adopting Kuame, but her desire to do so had died long before that. The flirtatious girl of her youth, who had enjoyed rubbing up close to her Myrian comrades, and the woman who had been in a devoted, passionate relationship, were now nothing but faded memories. Ayatah's life was dedicated to her work, her academic achievements, and most importantly, Kuame.

She didn't need another male in her life but him.

"C'mon, Aya!" The boy was already sitting beside a small pile of books he had collected from the lowest of the shelves. Their names for each other were not mother or son, but instead were My Aya, my Kuame.

"I'm here." She said patiently, seating herself on the step above her adopted child and pick up the first book from his pile. The boy still struggled to read, and he would have made his selection based purely on the pictures and colours of the book covers.

It was clear why Kuame had chosen the first book; the front cover displayed a huge Myrian tiger, with wide eyes and an even wider mouth. Three dark-faced, primal-looking Myrians peered out from within the Tiger's gullet, all of them looking terrible forlorn. "Monty the Myrian Tiger." Ayatah tried her best to sound enthusiastic. Excited, even. Kuame stared up at her, pleased with himself for having recognised the word Myrian.

He pointed to the word in question and grinned. "Like you, Aya."

"Yes, like me." She didn't mention that she suspected that Myrian blood ran in Kuame's veins as much as ran in hers. The boy's parentage was unknown to him, having been left at an orphanage shortly after his birth. But Ayatah had spent enough time around pureblooded Myrian to recognise their characteristic broad forehand, wide shoulders should, squat legs. Kuame, much like her family, was built for strength. As for the other half of hertiage? The Gods only knew.

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Ayatah
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[The Valkalah Library] Once Upon A Story

Postby Ayatah on May 16th, 2015, 10:14 am

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A wave of nostalgia washed over Ayatah as she ran a finger down the cover of the book, touching the thick green foliage of the Falyndar jungle. She missed that heat, the intense humidity of her home. Her decision to adopt Kuame had had a consequence, one that the half-breed was only just realising. She would not be able to return to Taloba anytime soon, not with a half-breed child that wasn't even her own in tow. The Scattered Bones might accept Kuame, or try their best to, but the rest of her people wouldn't. She would not allow her child to experience the same difficult childhood she had. No: Kuame would not be criticised for being only half-Myrian. He would grow up in a place where his worth was based on his actions and contribution to society, not just his heritage.

"Aya?" His timid little voice broke through her distracted mind, and Aya blinked to look down upon her son's concerned face. He was worried for her.

"Yes, let's read." She said, keeping her voice light and breezy. She turned the cover of the book and flicked through to the first page of the story. One page was dedicated to a large picture of an adult tiger - presumably a female, judging by the tiger cubs at her feet. The mother tiger was bright orange, with black stripes running across her body. Two of her three cubs looked like miniature versions of their mother, but one cub was slightly smaller, and had no black stripes.

"Monty the Myrian tiger was just a cub," Aya read aloud, her voice bouncing along to the tune of the lively poem:
"when his mother and father told him he wasn't so good.
There were no tiger stripes across his pelt,
Oh the sadness Monty felt!"


She turned the page. An image of a sad looking cub, surrounded by his striped peers, greeted her. Familiarity stabbed in Aya's gut, but she continued reading anyway.

"His brother and sister were fast and strong.
'Oh Monty!' They said, 'you'll never belong.'
And though it made him feel blue,
Monty knew their words for true."


Kuame gave a sad whine. He was a compassionate boy, quick to feel sorry for those that stuck out or had no friends. Aya disliked thinking of the reasons for such sincere empathy in a young lad.

"On one fine day, the Myrians came,
With their sticks and rocks and their savage names,"

(Well that's just rude, Aya thought with a sniff.)
"'We're looking for young tiger cubs to train,
To help us kill the Dhani slain.'"

His brother and sister were taken away,
But Monty remained, day after day.
Soon he was full-grown and very sad,
With still noo stripes, he was stark-raving mad!

'Those Myrian savages don't know a thing!
I'll show them, I'll be the jungle king!'
So Monty trained all of the time,
Building his muscles in preparation for his crime."

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Ayatah
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[The Valkalah Library] Once Upon A Story

Postby Ayatah on May 16th, 2015, 10:45 am

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"What's he going to do, Aya?" Kuame's eyes were wide, his voice fearful. The boy was completely engrossed in this silly tale, and Aya couldn't help but smile. Though the poem was insulting to her maternal people, the fact it entertained her son pleased her.

"There's only one way to find out, Kuame." She murmured, placing a hand on his cheek gently before returning it back to the book. She turned to the next page.

"He dug a deep hole in the jungle earth,
Covered it with leaves and shouted for all his worth:
'Oh Myrian folk, 'tis I, your Queen!
I'm lost in the jungle, amongst all of the green!'

And those silly savages fell for his trick,
They hurried towards the voice, all very quick,
When they stood on the leaves he'd laid down before,
Those silly savages fell straight through the jungle floor!"


Kuame's gasp was so dramatic, Aya had to swallow down her laughter.

"Now they aren't too bright, those Myrian folk,
'Oh no!' they cried, 'The jungle has broke!'
But Monty stood above them now,
'Remember me?' He said, giving a bow.

'I'm the cub you all rejected,
You said I was rubbish, left me dejected.
But you're mine now, you silly Myrian sinners,
And each and every one of you will be my dinner!'

Now the moral of this story is of great import:
Just be you, don't sell yourself short.
And as those silly savages learnt
Respect is not given, it must be earned."


Ayatah closed the book, a collection of mixed feelings brewing inside her gut. Whilst she appreciated the lesson the poem passed onto children, the portrayal of her people left little to the imagination. This is why the barbarian people think the Myrians as nothing more than mindless killers, she thought. Sure, it was mildly comical, but it was completely inaccurate. For starters, to claim that Myrian weapons were just sticks and rocks was almost blasphemous. She didn't know whether to laugh, cry, or write a strongly worded letter to the author of this book.

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Ayatah
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[The Valkalah Library] Once Upon A Story

Postby Ayatah on May 16th, 2015, 11:04 am

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"Did that really happen, Aya?"

"Huh?" Aya pulled her mind away from the racist book to Kuame's innocent question. All anger and frustration she felt instantly melted away as she looked at his dark, questioning face. A smile even pulled on her lips as she replied: "no. Not as far as I know, Kuame."

The boy nodded slowly, but he his curiosity was clearly not satiated, "You said the Myians have weapons, not sticks and rocks." He was torn between believing Monty's story and believing what his mother had previously told him.

With a mother's eternal patience, Aya explained. "We do have proper weapons. But this is a funny book, isn't it? Stories don't always tell the exact truth. Myrian Tigers don't talk, either." Her tone was gentle, encouraging. But the half-breed wanted her child to listen and appreciate her lesson. Having been bought up in a culture where all non-Myrians were regarded as barbaric, Aya did not want Kuame to assume the same of any race. Tolerance, she was learning, was hugely important. "But did you like the story?"

The boy nodded with a grin, "I like the bit where he dug a hole and pretended to be Myri. That was funny."

Kuame's mother had been less entertained by that part, but nevertheless Aya managed to muster a minor smile. "Yes, me too Kuame." Despite her lack of active prayer to Myri of recent times, she still felt dedicated to the Goddess-Queen. It would be a step too far for her to enjoy something that actively mocked the deity of her people. Faith might waver, but loyalty did not.

"How about another story?"

The boy grinned, selecting a second book from his pile. "This one has a rabbit on the front." Kuame offered, as if the book was a bargaining tool.

Thank the Gods, Aya thought, at least there's no rabbits in the jungle.

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Ayatah
The Scholarly Savage
 
Posts: 737
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Joined roleplay: December 27th, 2012, 11:30 am
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[The Valkalah Library] Once Upon A Story

Postby Aoren on May 19th, 2015, 4:08 pm

Ayatah

Experience
Skill XP Earned
Socialization +2 EXP
Storytelling +3 EXP
Singing +1 EXP
Philosophy +1 EXP
Teaching +2 EXP


Lores
Lore Earned
Kuame: To Grow Away From Taloba
Kuame: A Forthright, Blunt Little Boy
Story: The Myrian Tiger
Storytelling: Stories Don’t Always Tell The Exact Truth




Notes :
If you have comments, questions or concerns please approach me at your earliest convenience. Don't forget to edit/delete your request in the request thread!
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