Drops of Faith (Colombina)

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This shining population center is considered the jewel of The Sylira Region. Home of the vast majority of Mizahar's population, Syliras is nestled in a quiet, sprawling valley on the shores of the Suvan Sea. [Lore]

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Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Zaira on October 16th, 2009, 6:08 am

Season of Fall, 30th 509 AV
Tag Colombina

Kneel, in silence alone
My spirit bares me
Pray for guidance, towards home
In darkest hours

Not many could understand how the celebration of life, how motion and the loss of one’s self in wordless glory could be a prayer. Not many but another dancer, or one who grew use to the sight and explanation. Could understand that they were giving themselves over, that their bodies moved tirelessly while their minds cleared, and with it their spirits flew. They reached a meditative state that brought them closer to Yahal, purer in spirit and freer in thought.
Kneel (dream within dream we travel)
In silence (empires of faith unravel)
Alone (sealed with our virtues' treasures)
Kingdoms falling

Her bare feet moved over the stone street, she didn’t mind the onlookers, it was day light still so the streets were not packed, and although it was a private ordeal, it was still, for none could hear the cries of her heart for Yahal, or the thoughts she let fly from her mind, through her form and fire to the god. She set a single bowl of fire upon the ground dispassion looking to the flames that were her joy and comfort.
Down (who's hand commands this thunder)
In silence (cry as we're torn asunder)
Alone (unto what gods do I call?)
Protects us in our...

She wore her foreigner clothes, the pants gave her more movement, her plain shirt was cinched around her waist by the purple scarf she wore with her dress, the beaten coins lined and made jingling noise, but it was not there for decoration, but like the pants, gave her freedom to move. Her long dark hair was covered by a red scarf. She was lively dressed compared to ‘native’ Sylirain, but far tamer than any had seen the woman who loved the street for performance and merry making.
Fall away, my soul wandered
Borne by grace
I flew on high, sheltered from this thunder
Calling heaven...

Slowly the woman stood up from her kneeling upon the cold stones metal sounded as it scraped across the stone. Leather handles rested loosely round her wrists, as her fingers and palms closed lightly around thin metal chains. The handles, connected to the chains, ran down to hollowed metal balls, more holes than metal that held a bundled wick each, the holder of her fire. The spheres scraped across the cobble stones before being cast into the flames.
Take me away from time and season
Far, far away we'll sing with reason
Prepare our throne of stars above me
As the world once known will leave me

The poi was yanked from the flames, wick burning brightly and the chains twirled , fiery circles created in the sky above the dancers head in unison before abruptly separating, arms straightening out to her sides, and sweeping motions arms moving independent of the other, moving in mirror of the other for fleeting moments before diverging into the whim and will of Zaira’s body. One hand rose and the poi with it shot to the air as if the dancer herself had thrown the flame skyward while her other extension crossed over before her body multiple times, each looking as if it should sheer the fabric of her shirt to flames.
Take me away upon a plateau
Far, far away from fears and shadow
Strengthen my heart in times of sorrow
Light the way to bright tomorrows


Her body spun gliding steps, visual flame trails spread out near her calves like the hem of a skirt before circles in the air were painted and wide loops. It would take an observant spectator to realize the dancer’s eyes had closed as she moved, yet her features were peaceful giving no thoughts to her dance or the flames she wielded but moved, as her body bid her to move.
Answer our call in desperate hours
Shelter our fall from earthly powers
Temper our souls with flame and furnace
Bear us toward a noble purpose

Her body moved, her entire body moved with the dance and the flame, her back arched and head leaned back as she fell back slightly and sweeping poi passed over her front before she was forward and the flames still whirling around her as she moved more like her usual dance her back arched and hips moved to a song only she and the flames knew as the flames climbed higher and twirled above her head.
Heaven hides nothing in its measure
Mortal men blinded by false treasure
Formless and vanquished we shall travel
Shield and sword will guide our battle


Her body leaned forward sweeping the twin poi over the ground before her before back skyward, her arms separated to paint orange circles at either of her sides before the orbits tilted and neared, crossing before her and then the path of each other without collision. Zaira’s body moved, her eyes opened, but there was nothing to her gaze but to make sure she did not wander far, or hurt another, while her body gave form to the beautiful conflicting chaos, her heart called out, cried out after so long it’s silence.

So long she had been quiet, did not question, did not doubt, the dreams she had when she should have perished, the dreams that haunted night and day like heat sickness visions until she found a companion in a lonely oasis. She trusted Yahal, she trusted in him, completely as much as her young heart could, perhaps even to the point of foolishness. But she had faith, she had belief, and that, was all she had now.
Take me away from time and season
Far, far away we'll sing with reason
Prepare a throne of stars above me
As the world once known will leave me

Her motions grew bigger, as if louder and he body moved, turning quickly, spinning the flames faster, she could feel the lick of the flames, the burn of her muscles, crying for water and rest, and the peaceful silence to her mind as finally her heart called out in woe. Her body leapt feet leaving the ground unaware even as her feet touched back upon the stone each
Heaven hides nothing in its measure
Mortal men blinded by false treasure
Formless and vanquished we shall travel
Shield and faith will guide our battle

Pain blossomed it was a fleeting thing, not a serious thing the poi striking her shoulder thrown off enough to strike the sensitive skin of her neck. The cry was bitten and held, arms climbing heavenward lowering in sweeping motions as if hands played with fans rather than fireballs upon chains. She twirled the burning spheres as her body moved, sweat rolled down her neck and made the throb of the burn, and the pulse of her heart all the more loud in her head. She wanted, something, since she had been here, the visions were no more, and she was alone, surely if there was a purpose for her, in this far off place, he would let he know, the way would be shown. What was her purpose here? Why was she there. And the grieving heart questioned, why her. Was it her, or had she been mad, and folly guided her path not the hand of the divine.
Salvation comes in desperate hours
Angels on high proclaim these powers
Lead us from chaos we shall follow
Bear us to a bright tomorrow


Drops of water fell upon dry stone although no rain fell from the sky above, she spun letting the poi swing in either hand each making circles in unison, opposite of the other before lowering crossing upon her middle again one hand made a large arc then slowed, and she stopped. Her heart was racing so, and her skin was damp with sweat, from her motions and the flames.

The few tears that had escaped in her dance were unnoticed as the woman breathed poi dangling in her limp hand resting upon the cold stone. Her eyes rose o the heavens, in this place of her dreams, where even the stars were strange and new, she was alone. But for the sun, the moon, and her belief, in someone… who may have forgotten her.

Zaira did not remember the fall and any that saw could attest the woman had simply moved to take a step forward, and collapsed like a doll that had it’s strings cut, she crumpled to the stone covered earth, and in her wavering vision, looked up, and saw the stars.
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Colombina on October 17th, 2009, 5:23 pm

Zaira's fevered worship began to decrescendo, bleeding the strength from her. It expelled with her breath and rolled off her fingertips until her body made Zaira's will a ghost. It took command, and crumpled her legs. Her eyes blocked the dizzying color and lines that tempted her to action. Only stars remained, pin-pricks of silver, then nothing.

When Zaira could see and remember again, there was painfully blue sky above her. Warm sand was making mounded pillows under her. Rapidly moving clouds above her highlighted the curvature of the world.

"You have been missed."

A man in the prime of his life was bending over her, his brown hair falling forward. He smiled then reached to help her stand. He wore elaborate bracers and his voice was a lion's paw, gold and velvet.

Zaira was gently lifted to her feet. She was whole but Syliras was gone. She stood in the desert, sand on either side, endless as the sea.


With her bearings restored, she could absorb the figure standing across from her. He was beardless and wearing a knee length tunic edged and belted in gold. Feathered wings were casually folded behind his shoulders. The feathers glimmered and deepened in shades of green, the hues moving like water.

What was strangest was the sheer solidity of him, as if he was crafted of denser things, though he looked no different from flesh and bone. There was a subdued caution to the way he moved, like a misplaced gesture could crush and pierce.

The man before Zaira was a shadow of the true shape, a portion a mortal could comfortably approach.

"I had wondered when you would let me catch you for a moment."
He looked at her kindly.
"My followers are dear as children or a bride to me. I am glad to hear their voices."

As she listened, Zaira felt a gradual filling of her heart. Safety and peace flowed into the fractured portions, sealing chinks she knew and had been unaware of. It was weightless and warm as sunlight.

"Yours often comes from a place of distress or trouble. Like many of my children's. It is good you turn to me."
He beheld her, his eyes knowing.

"But I intend to fashion you into a follower who will speak with me in times of normalcy as well. That you would find life and abundance under my wings."
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Zaira on October 19th, 2009, 4:35 am

Blue eyes looked upward to the sky for seconds that seemed like hours, it was strangely peaceful. She was warm and looking at the brightly lit sky, yet before the rationalization could begin, that she had fallen asleep within the city and it was now dawn, a familiar voice spoke to her. The downturned face of a man came into her sight, blocking the light and allowing her to see his face. A hand reached to her which she took and slowly rose, the thoughts of who could then man be to who could be missing her was forgotten as the world was righted and all her eyes could see was the vast seas of sand. Neither cobbled stones, nor vender stands were in this place, but crisp sands. Upon her feet now and the waking haze dispersed with the thundering of her heart, crystalline eyes turned back to the one who drew her from her place upon the sands.

The tales and fables of their lord were unchanging in his features, his images forever etched upon the hearts of his. His belt of gold, a sign of faith, wings of emeralds and indigo, all that was lacking in this tale was his spear and a withering serpent. Least the serpent was she, an unworthy creature to stand before him now. He looked, real, not a vision not a dream, but solid, as real as her, if not more. As if the doubt was upon the wind, he spoke.

“Yahal.” The name of the god upon her lips, her fingers rising quickly to her lips. How to put into words, the conflict that rose in one, to be standing on the warm sands beneath a blue sky with a god, your god. The joy, the fear, the feeling of unworthiness, the questions, the thanks, the praise, the urge for tears with no specific reason. How could one put all that into words? It was impossible, yet it could be spoken, in but a name.

He gave her a look, kind and knowing speaking again something happened, a peaceful warmth that emanated, from her heart to her skin, the wonderful feeling of security she had missed since waking from dreams of grassy green hills and whispering winds with the scent of orchard plants. It was a comfort that was comparable to the sweetest of reunions. She breathed, there was nothing to say, yet no understanding what to do with the feeling that filled her heart that longed to burst fourth through her skin.

Her eyes lowered at the gods words, sheepish was not the correct term for the expression the woman wore, but it was close. That knowing gaze, that many turned to the god in times of trouble and strife and to be among that following, but a comfort that where she turned she was still welcomed, still safe. Was such a, curious feeling, yet even before the next words were spoken, the feeling, that forgiveness could be garnered was close.

Zaira’s head lifted her eyes turning back to Yahal and away from the god’s shadow. She was not known for her silence, yet words failed her. The longing to soothe her worries often came to verify by touch, but surely to touch a god when there were no would was not proper. The worry, the joy, the contentment that pressed outwards at the confines of her skin was released in a long missing sound. Laughter came from her lips, joyful and dancing, it felt strange after so long to do it, let alone hear it from her own lips, yet the right feeling and sound was like a balm. Her hand cupped her cheek as her laughter ebbed and the light smile upon her lips as she looked upon the corporal form of Yahal.

“As you will Yahal.” The wonders, the questions that were sure to return, could be given voice, later. There would be time.
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Colombina on October 20th, 2009, 10:36 pm

Her laughter was well received, it was a true and pure effusion without pretense or prompting. The kind of purity Yahal found pleasure in.

"As I will," he repeated carefully.
"Sometimes mortals find these dangerous words, for my will is often difficult." His warning was quickly couched in comfort. "Difficult but good. It will bring peace and righteousness in its time."

He stretched out his hand and took Zaira's. It was a surprising gesture for its simplicity and affection.
"Walk with me."

Yahal understood Zaira was most at peace when in motion. Holding still would suit her for a time, but she praised him best when unfettered.

As he ushered her away from where she woke, the sand beneath them grew softer. The arid air and warming sun filled her with the dream of home, a concept she had almost forgotten. The god gently released Zaira and clasped his hands behind his back.

"I have brought you here to not only speak my plans but to let you speak your thoughts."
He looked at her, "I ask that my followers obey me, but I will not compel you to it. I will only try to woo."
Yahal was beginning at the roots before describing the petal to his follower.
"I ask this obedience because my path will direct you toward a life of fullness and serenity if taken."

The god began to slow his step, and the desert around them started to change. A violet dusk was falling. The curves of low clouds glowed rose while their bodies turned lilac. Faint stars were hung from the sky's zenith and the dunes put gold mantles on their white shoulders. It was superfluous beauty that existed only to please Zaira. She was its sole audience in this carefully crafted dream.

"Zaira," he stopped to emphasize the earnestness of his words, "Do you truly think of me as your god?"
There was no accusation, but perhaps a sadness.
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Zaira on October 21st, 2009, 1:07 am

Yahal’s words, gave the woman pause, his warning was indeed true how could they not be. A mortal was not privy to the knowledge a god held, seen the things a god had seen in the years and years of their existence. Even the most long lived of people, only had their one mortal life before they began all over again. It was like the story of the man and the bird, the bird led a man towards spring, although the path the man walked was filled of hardship and danger. The bird knew the way and could see their destination becoming closer, and closer, yet the man could not, he could see only his cuts and bruises, the signs of his suffering for his faith in the bird. Many times he wanted to give in, many times he wanted to turn away from the bird, cursed the bird, and seemed ready to quit his faith. The story had two endings, one ended with the man leaving the bird, turning away from the path and falling into darkness worse than ever before, only being brought back out by the faithful bird, or never again. Or the man gave the bird his trust once more and turned the corner to the spring he had been searching for.

Zaira was surprised as the hand closed upon hers and they began to walk, her hand engulfed in Yahals. It was strange to remember that old story now; she had not heard it since she was a child, young and small. She remembered how her sister had cried when the man got hurt and lost his way, after she had begged their mother to not make him follow the smiling bird any further. She had not thought of the stories in years, yet being, where she was, with whom she was with. That child’s tale seemed to make more sense now than it ever had to two young children.

The pair walked upon softening sand and more and more she thought, not of the god at her side, but those who had been lost. No self pity, no blind confusion. Just a longing to see the faces of those she loved. Her hand was released and the thoughts that had been returned to the present. Yahal released her hand, to clasp his own at his back. His words, he wanted to hear her thoughts, and perhaps there was a question of her obedience to the god before her. Any other time, unease would have stolen across her and seized her gut making her ill and worry to cloud her mind. Yet there, now, there was only concern. The color change of scenery was lovely, the time of dusk was always her favorite time, it meant work was almost finished, the family would gather, there would be meal and drink. The sound of her mothers’, or a male voice lightly singing. Music playing. It was the time of day that left the dancer feeling most alone. It was strange the slew of bittersweet memories that flitted through her mind, caused but a tender ache in her chest.

Yet that gentle, beautiful, pained feeling was washed away at Yahal’s words. He had stopped walking with her name on his lips, and the question he asked, as if he already knew the answer and was sadden by it, was, in itself saddening. Had she fallen somewhere along her path and not bee aware. Did she stop following the bird high over head and followed where it seemed the bird call to come from, or the easiest path before her?

“What could make you speak such words, Yahal? I have known you since I could run. Grew up giving thanks and praises to you, and listening for your voice to be upon the winds. My heart broke, day by day as Ahmen wasted away, I called to you, we all did, yet Ahmen still passed.” There was no anger, but contemplation to her words where once there had indeed been anger and pain upon the young man’s passing.

“My heart broke, my love was gone, and my tent was gone. Still I believe I gave thanks, to you, for letting me have my Ahmen, for letting me get to know and love him, for giving me the strength to stay by him when no others could or would. I gave to you my Trust, my Sacrifice. I may have been angry still and reckless, to try and test you, to see if you truly still watched us. Still heard us.

And you did, despite my ways, you heard me. Allowed me to lie near in grassy hills and smell the fruits of your orchard, and when I woke whole and alive, the grief returned and so did your dreams. I gave all that I had that survived the fire in thanks, and I left our home, trusting in you, to show me the way, to provide where I could not, to protect me, when I could not.

I would not even dream to attempt something such as that, if I did not have belief that you were my God. I could not go on when I was on my own, was it not for my faith in you. I may have become distracted and lost within the forests, but I am trying. To understand, to learn, this place, and your will. Sometimes, it is very difficult, and it hurts, very deeply to part and leave so many familiars, and be lost in this strange land. Yet even here, you are still my god.” She smiled lightly, surprised, in herself, turbulent out pours were not uncommon, in joy or fear from the dancer. And even though her words were impassioned, they were melodious, that strange secure sense of peace keeping hold of the young woman.
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Colombina on October 22nd, 2009, 8:25 pm

"To hear you speak your faith edifies us both."

He asked the question partly to hear her voice frame her belief. In her outpouring was a reminder of where she had been and the point she was wandering toward.

"I am going to ask more of you, Zaira. I want to temper you like one does metal. The fires will seem to weaken you, but when I take you from them, you shall be stronger. But because you say I am your god, I am at liberty to do this."

Yahal lifted his hands in front of him, and opened them skyward. On his palms opal colored handwriting slithered and faded. Words and names were fluidly replacing one another, some burned brighter than others and each was in a different style. While the god both felt and understood what was written there, Zaira could only see that it was a language.

"I have written the names of my followers on my palms. I do not forget them, even in times of trouble. As you grow in faith and purity, I hope you remember this."

Yahal's presence brought a peace that surpassed Zaira's understanding. It existed, certain as air, but there was no logical grounds for it. Such was faith, steadiness when the world was a ship in a storm.

However, paired with that comfort was the title of "god". A position that commanded fealty and respect. He spoke with Zaira gently, seeing futures and hopes for her, but the holiness of him was obviously muted. The full manifestation was a painful light deeply buried behind his eyes.
Purity was a terrible and beautiful thing.

He hid his wondrous palms once again, nestled beneath the joints of his wings and asked another question of Zaira.
"Tell me, what is purity?"

A large question, the way she narrowed her reply was as much an answer as her words.
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Zaira on November 2nd, 2009, 2:59 am

“Purity…” Zaira spoke the word carefully, purity, was a hard thing to define, to explain, they held purity to be the same as cleanliness, it was a pillar of their faith, but to clean the body was but a way to represent their purifying of their spirit. Often purity was limited to the physical level or thoughts. Spiritual purity or purity in its essence was hard enough to define alone.

“Purity, is light, it is hard to put to words and to be mortal. Purity can be of the body, of the mind, of the spirit, it is the opposite of, and freedom from taint. It requires action and thought. Purity of the spirit is the natural pristine state of our ghosts. It is being one who is close, to their god, to this world, to themselves. It is a radiance… “ A look came to her face she was trying hard to put to words what she thought, what her heart held in esteem to be pure, yet, words, failed.

They did not come, there was no language barrier in this world she walked with Yahal just her own lacking knowledge and rhetoric.

“Perhaps I, do not know. Neither the meaning, nor the words to say what I mean. Purity, makes some people shine, like the names upon your hands. It is the charity to others with no ulterior motives or egos involved, it is the feeling of being close to something greater, like a infant held to one who loves it’s breast.”

Zaira’s hands dropped to her sides, she had not realized they had rose and moved as the dancer tried to express her thoughts to the god before her. Her expression was slightly dejected, at her own failure, to put to words the thoughts and meanings that flowed through her, and even to worry that she was wrong, horribly wrong.
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Colombina on November 12th, 2009, 3:54 am

"Some are afraid of purity, of holiness. The nearer they come to me, the more I will sift what is pure from impure. They fear the difficulties and they fear that they will lose themselves in their devotion to me."

Yahal gave a mysterious smile, thinking of the wondrous lives he was able to unearth in his willing followers.
"It is not true. They become more themselves, purified, so they can begin to see in themselves what I have seen all along. In order for this to happen, though, they must trust in me and relinquish their will. Many come to me asking for me to heal one aspect of their lives, an aspect they find painful or troublesome."
His eyes drifted to the sand, he was simultaneously recalling a thousand moments. It looked only like a mild pensiveness.
"What makes me a dangerous god, is that I do not stop with the single thing. I seek to mend my followers in deeper and broader ways, to completely purify them."

He explained further, "They must choose to let me change them, though. Overcoming a follower's will would be like making a friend of a reflection or loving a statue. I ask that my people subsume their will to mine, believing I have good things for them."

His wings stretched, shedding a few emerald feathers. It almost resembled a nervous gesture. How could a god be apprehensive, though? Zaira was struck by the strange similarity of his mannerism to a young man telling a beloved of his affection.

"I have painted you a broad picture of how I feel towards my people, but you are here because I have plans and hopes for you."
There was a tender emphasis on the final word. He had given her a glimpse of his nature and his methods with general truths, but his real purpose was securing her individual devotion.

"Zaira," he touched her shoulder, "I want you to be set aside for me."

The sky trembled, and a blacker night flowed in from the zenith. It poured over colored sky like water, bubbling and foaming in silver. As they stood in evening the sand before them began to shake. Tips of flames bloomed from the ground.

Yahal guided Zaira back from the emerging wraiths of fire. They rose higher, lifted by a structure. A burning tent was rising from the sand, white grains slipped from it until it was a terrible shape. Blackened cloth and curtains of furious red and gold. It cracked and sputtered, the stake and beams of the tent becoming black outlines.

Zaira knew the tent just as she knew what body burned within it. It mesmerized her.

Yahal was beside her, speaking softly.
"I watched it with you. You did not move for hours as I stood by your side. You wept and then you made no sound at all."

There was quiet between them as the flames rolled and the shape splintered. Yahal's golden voice treaded into the heavy air.
"You were faithful to him, past all reasonable hope, you remained."

The tent disintegrated before her, the flames overcome by smoke. Ash made a heap on the gray sand.
How could such un-tethered fury be reduced to this sad little circle of dust? How could a life, a man, become so little?

"Would you give me the same devotion for a time? I need a heart undivided, with no loyalty to lover, child or place. Not forever," he consoled, "But for a season."
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Zaira on November 12th, 2009, 2:43 pm

She listened to his words and found truth in them, that some would fear the lost of their selves in their devotion to their god. It was a familiar thought, not simply had by the dancer but there were others, others she knew, familiar faces, friends. That had been their fear, yet here she stood, in the realization of what that devotion to faith could mean. Not the wielding of a god’s power, or the sprouting of the gods words yet, but speaking to him, walking with him. These, would not proclaim to the world that she was Yahal’s, would not strike awe or fear upon sight, but still would be amid the most cherished times, written across her heart. This had been what she needed most, perhaps it had been unfaithful, to wonder and doubt, to test. Yet without a face, just the voice upon the breeze and the scent of sweet fruit and grasses within a dream had been enough to renew her strength, again her belief, and sustain her. But this to walk with Yahal, to see, and speak with him…

Zaira could understand the fear the god spoke of, that he did not mend only the most pained of injuries but sought to mend and purify all, even the faults some would cling to. One had to be willing, to forsake them all, for the true retemperence, and it was frightful, uncertain of what would remain that a person knew was them.

Blue eyes watched an emerald feather dance upon the air as it passed down, down upon the sand as great wings shifted, stretching and refolding. Her eyes left the fallen plume to return her gaze to the god before her, curiosity prevalent. There again came the turbulent feelings to her pit, a mixture of emotions of great joy, and mayhap old fears, but mostly it was a question unasked. What? Why?

The smile was light upon her lips as her name was spoken and her shoulder touched. The gentle expectation of her face was smattered with confusion as the world around them changed the dying day becoming night but it went unnoticed as Zaira looked upon the god in question. It was when the earth at their feet began to stir that the woman looked away. Flames came up from the earth and a gentle hand guided her steps away from the licking hands.

From the sands, within the flames, a tent burned and the heart within her chest clenched. She knew that tent indeed, as she watched in the horror of memories and again before her the fire devour all. Her hand stole across her chest, fisting upon the skin over her heart as the delicate line of her jaw clenched.

Yahals voice came softly from beside her, while her eyes were only for the flames her own hand had started, she heard the god still and felt the return of old tears. She had indeed wept, and did so again although no cry made it past her lips, the pain to her heart came anew, not the slowly deadening ache that it had finally began to fade to, but that piercing pain that she could not tell if it began a new, or was it only a memory. This pain that ate upon her heart like the flames upon the tent, and the body it held within.

The silence that had fallen between the god and woman was not true silence; she heard the fire crackle, the wood split, and the sound of her own breathing, shaken by the unvoiced cries of grief. Again the god spoke, his voice was warm, light upon air that had become oppressive. He spoke of her faith to Ahmen and quietly the woman sunk to the sands. What the god called faith, she only knew as love. Ahmen had been chosen for her, because she needed him. Someone to counter her nature and impulses, someone who was strong enough to not be swept away by her, gentle enough not to overwhelm her. And they had found something so…

How could anyone think she would leave him, when it had been his time of need, even when it looked like he would never be hers, and it was only a lingering parting. Yet she loved him, and gave to him all that she could.

Soon there was nothing left, nothing but the piles of ashes that remained. Yet the pain did not fade away as the flames had died and the remnants of the tent were blown away. The question Yahal asked her, made something within the young woman drop. Was love, stronger than faith? Was not faith, in its purest form, love? The loyalty, the devotion, the trust, and belief she held for Ahmen, were it for another would it be simply faith?

It had not been a thought the Benshira had given thought of, to love another, to put so much into another again. She gave to others, her belief in them, and her trust in them. But even her faith to Yahal seemed to pale in the love she once held, for the devotion she once gave. Affections for others had grown, but those two were easily pushed aside for the memory of one gone, and her task.

That sort of devotion to another again was a terrifying idea. To let her world become narrowed down to one person again, and to lose them, again would break her still grieving heart.

Zaira’s lips were touched gently by the tips of her fingers, from a hand that had slowly uncurled and released its hold of the air above her heart. Her fingers moved and lightly touched the trails of her tears, tracing the wet path down to her chin as her eyes gazed upon the small pile of ash that remained upon the sand.

A season had to be but an eye blink to one who was so eternal, one had to wonder what could one woman’s devotion, for but a season could do, give, a god. But for Zaira a season of devotion, where death could no longer be a fear, even a factor. Could be time of value spent devoted to her god, learning and knowing Yahal.

Yet, it all seemed so, impossible.

“I was devoted to Ahmen, for I loved him. Loved him, for him. So much that I could not turn from him when all fell away and he was beyond hope of becoming well again. I never gave up my hope for him until he died, yet this pain I still hold that has only begun to fade, can mean only still that I love him so, still.

I cannot bear to think I caused him to suffer, that he lingered, burdened by my love as well as his own suffering. Yet it made me love him, all the more, wish to bathe him in it while I could so there would be no doubt or question that all I did was of me, not of obligation, but of my own feelings for him.

I no longer have a place. I bare no child, hold no lover, yet I fear, this complete devotion you ask of me. I know, no way to compete with what I have given to flesh and blood, and what I can give to a god. I know not how to dote upon one so high. I can say that I will try, to devote all that I am; my heart, my thoughts, my actions to you, Yahal.” The voice was soft, it wavered but strengthened, but all the same it was soft as one near a grave. Zaira looked at the asses for so long as she spoke, and seemed to hesitate before her face raised and turned towards the winged god, tears almost dry before the arid air.

“Yet already the task seems insurmountable, I know not where to even begin.” The smile was so gentle; sadden already at the thought of failure.
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Re: Drops of Faith (Colombina)

Postby Colombina on November 19th, 2009, 6:24 pm

"Insurmountable for you, perhaps," Yahal consoled Zaira with a reassuring look, "But not for me. I am faithful and will be with you as you go out."

The ashes and charred sand began to move of their own accord as Yahal spoke. They spread thinner and were welling with new color. The dust made outlines as it turned verdant. Then the outlines swelled into solid feathers.

"I do not require that your faithfulness and love be equal to mine. I only ask that you give what you can. I will meet you there."

The feathers began to shakily rise one by one. They looped and meandered towards the sky, submerging in the dark spaces between starlight.

"If you let me, I will be sufficient for you."

Yahal looked down on Zaira, letting his eyes fix her into place. Holiness and divine power were constrained behind his glance. It was like beholding the bright edges around an eclipse.

"I can be enough, Zaira."

After he felt she understood what she could, he turned toward the way they came. It was time to move, beginnings were at hand.

"There are those who need encouragement, Zaira. Their spirits flag and they do not remember goodness. They have no rest as they cannot trust. They stand on shifting sands."

He paused, letting Zaira call to mind memories of such people she had seen in her own life.

"I do not demand fealty to myself from all, but I wish to see fealty to goodness. On that road, I will meet them, even if I am not their goal."

Another beat of silence before continuing.

"This is where I call you to be. You will carry my banner of encouragement to those people. Remind them of the peace faith and purity brings."
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