Solo Daddy Issues

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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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Daddy Issues

Postby Ayatah on February 1st, 2016, 7:43 pm

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90th Winter, 515AV

Despite the years she had dedicated to learning and broadening her understanding of the world, Ayatah was pretty slow on the uptake.

Of course she didn’t realise this. But Ayatah re Naphu did. In fact, it was her who had originally thought up this hypothesis. Her memories were identical to Ayatah’s, including those blisteringly humid years spent in the undodly jungle city of Taloba. And though the two-armed Eypharian could sense the attachment the Mixed Blood had for her home city, she certainly didn’t share it. The memories that Ayatah the Mixed Blood held so fondly were looked back on by her Eypharian self with derision and regret. Making love in the mud? Hardly romantic. Using that very mud as a skin treatment? Foul smelling and not exactly sanitary.

Yes, though they shared the same memories, Ayatah the Eypharian’s interpretation of them was vastly different. The same went for the Myrian half of Ayatah, who detested the very years in Zeltiva drinking, Kelp Beer with poets and scholars, that Ayatah the Eypharian had actually quite enjoyed. Though they were two sides of the same coin - and Ayatah the Mixed Blood the narrow edge in between them - the Myrian and the Eypharian did not have to agree on anything. And indeed, they hardly did.

The single entity that the two halves of Ayatah both adored was Kuame. Both recognised the impurity of his heritage, but they could hardly use this against the innocent lad. He was sweet and kind but eager to learn. In short, he was as close to perfection as the Gods would allow to walk upon this world.

But. Back to why Ayatah the Mixed Blood was less smart than her Eypharian counterpart (or half). For starters, the Mixed Blood was still doubting the very existence of her separate selves. To the Eypharian, this seemed ridiculous. Not only had the Mixed Blood actually had a conversation with that vile Myrian half (all whilst the Eypharian remained trapped inside the Mixed blood, stewing in her own regret and annoyance for missing out on this crucial moment), but surely Aya realised that her two halves had always been there? What - or who, more fittingly - did she think made her the whole being she was in day-to-day life? She may have been born and raised by Myrians, but that inner Eypharian was very much alive, very much Eypharian, and always had been.

Second to her confusion over the existence of her other halves was the Mixed Bloods desire to keep secrets from them. Even now, as the Eypharian padded around their home at night, she could feel the Mixed Blood pulling certain thoughts and memories into herself, even in sleep.

It’s useless! She felt like crying to the half-sleeping Mixed Blood, I am you, you are me! They were one and the same, and yet completely different.

The Eypharian pushed onwards. She picked through the paperwork that Ayatah kept stuffed in the bottom of the kitchen drawer, where she thought nobody would ever bother looking. It was this ludicrously obvious location that the Mixed Blood had decided to hide any documents pertaining to her father, the elusive and disappointing Rashak re Naphu.

The meeting with the ghost of her Great-Grandmother had been emotional and confusing for all three of the Ayatah’s - yes, the two halves existed even back then, they always had. The Myrian wanted to rip open the ghost’s throat (a fruitless exercise, the Eypharian had noticed, given the woman’s ghostliness, but it was equally pointless trying to talk sense into a raged Myrian). Ayatah the Mixed Breed had been equal parts repulsed and intrigued. And the Eypharian?

She had been delighted.
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Daddy Issues

Postby Ayatah on February 1st, 2016, 8:45 pm

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Though she had never visited the Desert of Ekytol, the Eypharian felt an unspoken and instinctual link to the place. With every new fact and piece of information Ayatah the Mixed Blood had learnt about the Eypharians, it had been her Eypharian half who’d excitedly whispered: yes yes! learn more learn more! When the Half Breed had subsequently wondered why she was so drawn to the people of her father, it was her Eypharian half who, whilst mentally ripping her not-yet-materialised hair, had screamed out me me me! It’s me, you bloody great fool!

The Eypharian had been even more thrilled when the ghost of Khatashi re Naphu informed Ayatah of so many details of her paternal family. To the Mixed Breed, it was an overwhelming amount of new, foreign information, but as soon as the Eypharian heard Khatahi’s first words, they felt familiar to her. There was understanding between the two Eypharians, it was just a shame there had been a lumbering great fool of Mixed Breed in the way.

Perhaps that was unfair. Ayatah was not a fool, she was just unaware. She was in denial about what was happening to her, but if she just allowed either of her halves (even the Myrian, the Eypharian admitted begrudgingly) to sit down and explain it all, her anxiety could he quelled.

We’re not ghosts.

We’re not stalkers.

We’re not trying to kill Kuame, we love him as much as you do.

We’re the two parts of you, and we’ve been with you for your entire life. Only now, for some reason, can we step away from you.


It was the truth as far as the Eypharian understood it. Something bizarre had happened in Riverfall, which meant that the two halves of Ayatah could not only pull away from each other - for which the Eypharian was thankful - but become as physically real as the Mixed Breed in which they had existed. It was a blessing, but not perfect. Now more than ever the Eypharian found herself growing frustrated when Ayatah denied herself the most of the simple Eypharian-esque pleasures: stylish clothes, a massage, a good bottle of wine. Every day was a passing battle with the Myrian half; what would she act more like today, the blood-thirsty savage or the aloof, proud Eypharian?

But tonight was the Eypharian’s night. How the two halves organised themselves to decide who would step from the Mixed Blood that night was anyone’s guess. It was frankly nothing short of a miracle, but ultimately the two halves of Ayatah worked towards the same goal: they wanted the best for her, for themselves and each other. There was no secrets to be shared between of them, either. So the Myrian knew exactly what the Eypharian’s plans were for tonight, and though she hardly approved of them, she accepted their importance.

So, onwards with the plan.

The Eypharian scattered through the paperwork in that secret bottom drawer, stopping only when she felt the cool touch of metal on her fingertips. The ring she pulled from the drawer was large and archaic, typically Eypharinan in design. The face of the ring was flat and circular, with a small but high-quality blue stone set in the middle. The words ‘From the sands come the jewels, and from us come the riches’ were engraved around the outside of the circle; the re Naphu family motto.

The hollow inside the ring was stuffed with a folded up piece of paper, as if the parchment itself was a long, delicate finger. Though the ring was of great import for her current mission, it was the details written on these folded papers that were crucial to the Eypharian’s plans, so she slipped them into her pocket alongside the piece of jewellery.
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Daddy Issues

Postby Ayatah on February 1st, 2016, 9:37 pm

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Armed with a family heirloom and an address, the Eypharian left her Riverfall apartment. Though the Mixed Blood liked to joke how she still got lost in the city, she actually knew the streets impressively well. Well enough, in fact, to have tracked down a certain name and a specific address.

The Overlook apartments were not far from the Windswept Condos where Ayatah and Kuame had made their home. The distance was, if anything, too close. The Eypharian could imagine how her Mixed Blooded self would react if she realised how close a proximity her father lived. It was all well and good knowing the address of his apartment, but to actually stand outside the building, having walked less than ten chimes from her own…

An excited shiver ran down the Eypharian’s spine. She looked to the directions again, taking note of the specific apartment number he lived at. And then she continued on her mission, trying her best to act calm and natural, as if she walked these halls every day. To neighbours she nodded and smiled, even when faced with confusion and mild mannered hostility. In truth, her opinion of the building’s interior was not positive. The furniture was dated, the rugs faded slightly. Though she was thankful for not living in such conditions hers, the Eypharian couldn’t help but wonder what it said about her father’s lifestyle. If he had been living in the city for the past twenty-something years, surely he would have afforded a better place to live?

Finally, she reached it: the door which would reveal her father. She took a chime to prepare herself, to straighten her hair and clothes, and to quell the urge to run and tear up his address.

Finally, Ayatah re Naphu knocked on the door.

It took several moments for her father to answer it. So long, in fact, that the Eypharian knocked three more times before the door burst inwards, and a harried voice damanded, “what? What? It’s late? What is it?” In a lilted accent.

Ayatah was stunned. Her father was stepped in the darkness of his apartment, but she could see his faint outline; the height, the six arms. She felt like weeping at the sight of those six arms, they were so beautiful. She mourned her own two arms, wishing that Ayatah the Mixed Blood had been born as the pure Eypharian like she felt like she deserved to be.

But no matter for that now, important things to discuss.

“Rashak? Rashak re Naphu?”

“What is it? Who are you? Is the building on fire?”

He hadn’t accepted the name, but nor had he rejected it. Dumbly, Ayatah reached into the pocket and extended her arm outwards, the ring glinting at the end of her clutched fingers. “I. I am. Ayatah.” She said in faint Arumenic, trying, and failing, to find some of that Myrian bravery and inner-fire. “Ayatah of the Scattered Bones. Never before had she spoken that hideous clan name with such meaning, such pride.

The male Eypharian squinted at her through red, bleary eyes. He rubbed at his stubbled chin and Aya noticed the many rings that he wore, all gold and similar in style to the one she protruded out to him. She dropped her arm and returned the ring to her pocket, hopeful that she had indeed found the right man. “I’m you’re—”

He silenced her with a raised, shaking hand. This was a lot for him to take in, and she needed to be careful not to overload him. “Quiet. Why are you here? Did my family send you?” He spoke lowly and venomously. Aya recalled how her Great-Grandmother had spoken sadly of the disillusion of the relationship between Rashak and his family, all at the cost of his failed love for Paira of the Scattered Bones.

“Because… I’m you’re daughter.”

“Why now? Why in the middle of the night? Gods, what time is it?”

Panic began rising in Aya’s chest. She tried to subdue this fear, to calm her breath and anchor herself down. Panic and fear, she had learnt on one of her first outings, was a quick way to have herself yanked back into Ayatah the Mixed Blood. It would appear that in times of great stress or danger, one Ayatah was more than enough. “Can I come in?” She asked expectantly, suddenly aware how ridiculous this conversation was to have in the middle of the shared hallway. “Let me in, and I’ll explain.”

“You can’t be my daughter.” The man said with unhidden bitterness. “I suggest you leave and tell my mother to fu-”

“My name,” Ayatah said, her voice growing in volume and irritation. Here it was! That passion and aggression that had been injected into Ayatah by Taloba. It felt hideously wrong for the Eypharian to be inspired by that vulgar culture, but here she was talking like a savage, and being thankful for it, “is Ayatah of the Scattered Bones. My mother is Paira of the Scattered Bones. Which means you, Rashak, are my father. Now please let me in or I will kick this door down.”

A tick passed.

The male gave the briefest of nods, stepped aside and allowed his daughter through the door.
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Daddy Issues

Postby Ayatah on February 2nd, 2016, 9:23 pm

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The inside of his apartment was hideously cluttered, dusty, and smelt of stale papers – and that was being kind. The Eypharian could hardly contain her disappointment and mild disgust. She considered that perhaps he was in the midst of a big project, and simply lacked the space to put the documents away. But when he did not apologise for the mess, and instead simply trod his way through the covered floor, she lost what little hope this idea had given her.

He led her to a living room that featured only two chairs, one of which was covered in papers and the other squashed down, presumably to the shape of Rashak’s arse. ‘Lived in’, would be the polite term to describe this apartment, but ‘Shyke hole’ was far more apt. She hovered awkwardly in the room until the male, who had sat himself onto his crushed throne with an unpleasant grunt, signalled to the other chair. “Move that stuff.” He said nonchalantly with a wave of his bejewled hand, but when Ayatah heaved a stack full of papers onto the floor, he yelped, “not there! There!”

Having shifted the documents to the correct location (on an already heaving coffee table), Aya perched on the tip of the sofa and waited. She expected questions, a hug, tears… Something to indicate that this man was her father. But instead Rashak simply watched her, his six arms all folded together and his eyes narrowed.

“So…”

Say something, anything!

Still nothing.

This was ridiculous. Sure, her midnight arrival was unexpected and perhaps poorly timed, but now her father’s silence was heading towards the domain of rudeness. “Do you have—”

“Why are you speaking Arumenic?”

It was less of an enquiry, more of a demand for information. Ayatah blinked. She had expected this question, of course, but not quite so… sharply. And why did he had to interrupt? That was just unnecessary.

“If you were my daughter, you would be speaking Myrian. Tell my Mother that she really must work harder if she’s going to try and trick me. In fact, tell her not to bother at all.”

How she wished the Myrian was with her! Though the two halves of Ayatah did not get along, their shortfalls and strengths complimented on another’s. The Eypharian was calculating and quick-thinking, but the Myrian strong and influential. Nobody dared to question a Myrian, but nobody wanted to employ one either. The only reason Ayatah even came close to resembling a functional individual daily was thanks to her two halves. Sometimes they worked in tandem perfectly, but most times it was the Myrian or the Eypharian who took the metaphorical reigns.

But pining for her Myrian half would not help Ayatah answer Rashak’s question. She had hoped that this issue wouldn’t come up until later in their meeting, when he already trusted her word and identity. But here it was; the biggest hurdle for her to leap over. There was always the possibility of telling the truth. You know all the weird stuff going on in Riverfall? Well, your single daughter has two inner selves that can now step away from her one at a time. Surprise! It’s triplets.

No, she thought not. But what was her other alternative? Ayatah licked her lips and said, in patchy common:

“I do - speak Myrian. Of course. But you speak Arumenic.”

This sparked Rashak’s interest. He leant forward on two elbows, his four other arms still clustered around his chest. Aya supposed that he was weighing up the chances that the woman before him was, in actual fact, his daughter, and whether she was a fraud apparently hired by his parents to lure him back home.

Judging by his pursed lips, Rashsak was thinking more along the lines of the latter.

“I know this is confusing. And late. And… strange. And the fact I speak fluent Arumenic is rewally not helping. I get that.” Ayatah mimicked her father’s posture, leaning forwards and trying to level with him on a father-daughter level that she hoped existed. If she could appeal to the logical scholar within him, perhaps she had a chance. “But I am Ayatah. I am your daughter. Ask me anything about my mother, or my clan.”

He toyed with this idea for several ticks, but eventually Rashak stood up and shook his head. Horrified that he was about to kick her out, Aya also rose to her feet and opened her mouth to beg for his consideration. But no: it was not the door Rashak walked to, but a decanter of alcohol. He poured a liberal amount of dark liquid into a glass and returned to his chair. After taking a sip, he fixed Ayatah with another stare, but this time his lips were twisted into a perverted little smile.

“Okay, let’s see.” He said, glancing upwards to the ceiling as if to catch a falling question to ask her. “Where did your mother and I meet? Where did we first make love? When did I suggest to her that we say vows before Cheva? What was her pet name for me? And mine for her?” His voice was raising, growing in volume and lowering in tone. When Rashak rose to his feet, Aya sank lower into her chair, as if the two of them were on opposing sides of a pair of scales. “Where did we plan to live once she had given birth to my child? When did she leave to tell her family of me, and to inform them of her leaving? Where was she in the jungle when she was torn to pieces by whatever rabid animal killed her? Did her clan honour her death? Do they even know she died? Did they ever learn of me, or our baby?”

Now he was shouting, lowering his face right into Ayatah’s so she could smell the whiskey and feel the spittle. His skin was reddening with anger, as were his eyes. This was a bad idea. This was a terrible idea. Why had she even considered this? Why hadn’t she, the intellectual and sharp-minded one, known better?

Her hands slipped down into her pockets. The action was self conscious and instinctual, and only when Aya felt something solid knock against her knuckled did she remember she was armed. Like any good Myrian, she had bought her doubled bladed dagger.

Pulling her hand from the pocket, and withdrawing the weapon from her hip, she shoved the central hilt into Rashak’s face. “Zenti’s shinbone.” She said coldly, her own voice almost matching his in volume and hostility. “Quinneth’s mother. You do know who Quinneth is, yes? The matriarch of my clan? My great-great Grandmother? She’s the one who told my clan to accept me, when my mother fell into early labour with a mixed blooded child. It was her word that saved my life, when she could have easily ordered my mother to drown me.”

Her hot words evaporated into thin air, but Ayatah’s frustration and anger remained doggedly at her heel. Rashak, however, had fallen into silence. He gently took the dagger from her and, with all six of his hands, he investigated the bone and twin blades. Brow furrowed, lips pursed. There was not real way to falsify a hundred-year old bone, especially one that had been smoothed by twenty years of training and fighting with it.

“I never told my family about that tradition.” He said thickly, in a voice that would have better suited a reprimanded little boy. “I knew they’d think it disgusting rather than fascinating. There’s no way they could have known…”

Finally he looked to his daughter, and Ayatah finally knew that he believed her.
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Daddy Issues

Postby Ayatah on February 4th, 2016, 6:48 pm

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For the next bell or so, Ayatah shared her life with Rashak, telling him of her childhood, her difficult adolescence. When he asked whether Paira had even spoke of him, Aya was honest and told him how her mother had downplayed their relationship to such an extent that Aya had always wondered how two people of such difference could ever produce a child.

“I can see why she would say that and not the truth.” He said gently, but from his expression Aya knew that he was disappointed. Which was more than reasonable – they had been terribly in love, her mother and father. So much so that they both knew that a life together would most likely mean one away from their respective families. “And of what of Paira now?”

Again, Ayatah was honest. She spoke of her mother’s husband, and their two children. Rashak fixed his jaw tightly and looked away as soon as it had become obvious that she had moved on, at least matrimonially if not emotionally. “She’s happy.” Aya offered hopefully, but then realised that her mother’s happiness with another man was not what Rashak wanted to think about.

So, instead, she spoke about Kuame. Rasahk was instantly delighted. “A Grandson!” He exclaimed. They shared smiles and laughter over the boy, who Ayatah was beginning to consider as the solution to all awkward conversations and silences. “He’s so clever, as well.” She was saying, “he loves writing stories and they’re honestly very good. It’s not just my opinion, it’s fact!”

They laughed some more. After silence had regained control of the situation once more, Rasahk, still his voice tinged with sadness, said, “well, that runs in the family.” He nodded to the papers that littered the floor, the table, and all other surfaces. “I’ve been writing for the past twenty years. Ever since… Well, you know.”

“You have?” Aya asked, her eyes darting from Rashak’s face to the parchment sheets. “About you and my mother?”

“Yes.” Rashak looked sheepish, “about us, our families, our culture. It’s part history, part anthropology, part love story.” He gave an embarrassed little chuckle, unable to meet Aya’s gaze.

“May I…?” She signalled to the closest page to her, and Rasahk nodded eagerly. The paper was filled with random notes, some written in Arumenic and others in Common.

Rashak peered at the page from his chair. “Ah, that’s about your clan, actually. I used to know all the names, everything. But… time, memory.” He grinned tiredly and began to give Aya “That pile over there is about my family, the one next to it narrates my work in Riverfall, before Paira came. And that one—” Now his hand jabbed excitedly towards the miniscule kitchen “—is about the rest. After I met her, before…”

Before she left me.

The words hung in the air unspoken. The reasons behind her mother’s leaving for Taloba led to more questions than actual answers. For starters, if she were returning to Taloba for nobility and to share the news of her pregnancy with her clan, why do it so late? Secondly, why didn’t Rashak come with her? Thirdly, and most importantly, why didn’t Paira make an effort to tell Rashak that she was alive, and that their daughter had been born somewhat safely in the jungle? It made little to no sense.
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Ayatah
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Daddy Issues

Postby Ayatah on February 8th, 2016, 8:52 pm

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She would have asked questions, worded carefully so as not to add further stress onto her father’s mind, but an unpleasant jolt to the gut jerked away any words on her lips. She gasped, clutching her stomach and bent over.

Rashak was horrified, his tired eyes widening and his whiskey-smelling mouth falling agap. “Ayatah? What’s wrong?” She saw the fear in his eyes, the realisation that his daughter might be dying mere bells after coming back to life.

But no: Ayatah was not dying. Quite the opposite, she was waking. The Eypharian was being torn away from this world to be yanked back to that which existed within the Mixed Blood. She needed to leave immediately, before she disappeared right in front of Rasahk’s eyes. Not only would it lead to more questions and disbelief, but seeing his daughter fade into nothing would hardly be good for his wellbeing either.

“I need to leave. Now. I’m sorry.” She was on her feet, but exhaustion haddled Aya’s mind. After circling on the spot several times, like a dog preparing to lie down, she turned to Rasahk for desperate support. “Can I have a quill? Quickly!”

Thankfully the Eypharian male moved with speed, dipping down to present his daughter with a tattered feathered quill. Aya wasted no time.

“Come to this address tomorrow. Midday?” She paused minutely to allow Rashak to hurriedly nod. His brow was knotted together in deep confusion, but he seemed to have been stunned into silence. “I will explain everything tomorrow, but please make sure you come. And… bring this paper, too. The one with my address and the notes of my clan, too. In fact, bring any paper you think will be helpful.”

“Helpful for what?”

Aya winced. That had been an ounce of information too far and her need to exit was growing with each tick. Elsewhere in Riverfall, Ayatah was beginning to stir. “Just say yes, please?”

Stuttering, Rashak said, “Y-yes.”

Finally satisfied, Aya half-ran to the door, leaping over a pile of papers and pausing fractionally to throw an apology over her shoulder as she heard them slide into disarray. The door was slung open, but not closed. As soon as Ayatah stepped into the hallway of her father’s apartment complex, she seemingly vanished.

“Bizarre dream.” The Mixed Blood murmured as she rose from her bed, stretching and yawning deeply. And somewhere, in the depths of her psyche and gut, the Eypharian smiled smugly.
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Daddy Issues

Postby Konrad Venger on March 13th, 2016, 6:33 pm

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Hey, Ayatah! Once you get back and deduct your Winter Seasonal Expenses, I'll grade this up, no problem. PM me when you get back!

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Note: As of Fall 517AV, Konrad is known only as "Hansel" in Endrykas
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