Completed Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Kelski meets someone new in the Temple of the Unknown.

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A lawless town of anarchists, built on the ruins of an ancient mining city. [Lore]

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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kelski on May 18th, 2018, 4:29 am

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Timestamp: 20th of Spring, 518 AV


She walked in the predawn light, light-footed and cautious. Though Kelski appeared alone, she was not alone. Shadows swarmed around her, curious at the newcomer and welcoming the distraction of their mundane purposeless lives. It had been so long since someone had ventured here other than taking momentary shelter to evade pursuit or to step out of the weather momentarily. But this was someone special, a Nightstalker… a daughter of Akajia who could not only hear them but see them.

What the Shadows saw and assumed of her was not what she was though. There was no strength, no independence, no powerful confident woman marked by a Goddess to serve Her in the ever-continuing search for the greatest secret of all lost in time. This Nightstalker was lost to the fold; traumatized. She was a walking lie. Enslaved, owned, and broken in so many ways… the Nightstalker walked the walk of someone driven, searching as she was born to do, but for the wrong thing because she was so far astray of her own kind and in many ways a stranger to herself.

Kelski stepped gracefully through the white tendrils of ground fog that were swirling their pale ethereal fingers across the broken stone of the Unknown Temple. She had searched the Castle Commons, a district that was often referred to the heart of Sunberth. It was a dangerous place, full of what was often called the best and worst of the city. Its heart was a mysterious relic that was rumored to be left from before a time when the God Ivak had destroyed the world in his grief. The Temple Of The Unknown was a behemoth of a ruin that sat alone and unused, marking time only by its slow decay.

The Temple of The Unknown was known as the oldest of Sunberth’s stone effigies. Kelski had often likened the city to a giant corpse, sprawled out washed up next to the sea, slowly rotting in the sun and rain and changing of the seasons. She saw its denizens as insects that crawled through the corpse, slowly consuming it… speeding along its return to the earth. The Temple of the Unknown was its heart, as Kelski discovered, sitting at its center alone and abandoned.

She glanced around with silver eyes that were so pale they made her look blind. Taking in the darkness that she could almost see as well in as she could the light, the Kelvic felt a sort of sadness at the lack of heartbeat, the lack of priests, and certainly no perishers. The building had been easy to access. Its gates and doors stood open and she had just strolled right in. She was searching for someone, her master who had disappeared, as the shadows had told her. She’d immediately went to look for him, not out of some lack of loyalty, but because she trusted the dark voices that whispered to her and often kept her company when no one else would.

She paced steadily through the ruined insides of the temple. Anything of value had long been stripped away and its beauty exposed to the weather in the form of fallen walls and broken columns. Despite the scarred façade, Kelski could feel the calm and peace inside the Temple and she gravitated towards it. She was making no attempt to hide, to conceal her presence, but paced openly, depending on the shadows to warn her of danger.

She was a young woman, looking no older than perhaps her late teens or even twenty. Her face, once lovely, was full of the harsh angles of someone not used to a completely nutritious diet. Thin, weathered like the Temple she traversed, Kelski had long black hair that went ombre towards white at its roots. The hair fell in a waterfall around her, teased by the shadows as they paced beside the Nightstalker and whispered their secrets.

She was dressed poorly. Her trousers were rolled up at the ankles and cinched at the waist to hold them up. A white tank was covered with another patched but very worn boys shirt. It was rolled up at the sleeves and its tails trailed down her narrow hips like a dress. She’d left a cloak behind so there was nothing to shroud herself in. Nice boots graced her feet, not overly expensive, but not worn and in decidedly decent condition. She was proud of her boots and treasured them. They carried her safety through the rubble, her eyes casting about for the one she sought, looking, seeking, growing more and more curious about where she was and less and less curious about where her Master had gone off too.

The Shadows themselves were making friends. “Nightstalker. What is your name?” One asked, caressing her hair and pulling at her oversized sleeves. It had whispered to her of the temple, welcoming her. There were several others about too, curious, but not speaking as they brushed up against her and wandered off, drawn and warned at the same time.

“Kelski…. I am Kelski. and I look for something…” She said softly hoping they’d be receptive in helping her. The one who had spoken first acknowledged her answer. “Dawkar. I am Dawkar. This is my home….” The shadow said, his voice decidedly masculine.

Kelski tilted her head, looking around, fascinated. “What can you tell me of this place?” She asked, curious, and then asked one more thing…. “And how long have you been here?” She added, feeling better that she was not alone and these shadows seemed friendly.

She didn't muffle her voice or conceal that she was talking to something 'other' at all. In fact, Kelski wasn't even trying to be desecrate. It was almost morning and she'd been hunting through Sunberth the entire night.
Last edited by Kelski on May 28th, 2018, 4:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kynier on May 18th, 2018, 1:16 pm

Timestamp: 20th of Spring 518 AV


The night had been devoid of luck. Kynier had been wandering the city hoping to stumble upon a clue relating to someone named Merv. Not once had he openly asked someone about Merv though, he figured that direct inquiry could cause trouble. So instead he had been eavesdropping on every random conversation to no avail. It wasn't a bad day though. While he had no new information he hadn't been targeted for his money, or his blood.

Though he wore his cloak it wouldn't have been enough against the cool night. He had been able to manage thanks to his long wide sleeved shirt. But it hadn't been his intention to stay out this late. The shirt was to cover the bandages on his arms. The wounds itched and we're only two days old. Kynier hoped to avoid any similar confrontations so they had a chance to heal. That didn't stop him from bringing his short sword and two concealed daggers. This was Sunberth afterall.

It had been awhile since Kynier had seen anyone else in the streets. The transition from night to morning was in sway. With no conversations to listen to his attention roamed to the buildings themselves. Some of the more pessimistic residents claimed that the city was dying. If the buildings were of any indication Kynier would say those people were right. They were poorly designed and poorly maintained. From a glance he could not say which were abandoned and which weren't.

But a shadow caught his eye as he walked. Looming in the early sky above the rest of the town was the temple. Kynier did not know much about the temple, except it was completely abandoned. No religious sect was present within making it more of a monument than temple. Curiosity nagged at him about it. In the few years he'd been in Sunberth Kynier had never given the temple much thought.

"I'd be interested in seeing the inside. "

With nothing better to do Kynier decided to indulge the idea. He made his way to the heart of the city. As he grew closer it became evident how old the structure was. While Sunberth's infrastructure had been influenced by many cultures and styles, the architecture of the temple was different from the rest of the city. As the rest of the buildings were ragged and cheap the temple was obviously well constructed and ravaged by time. When he was outside the open gateway he stopped and peered into the darkness inside.

A sense quiet settled in the air. Even at home just before the embrace of sleep Kynier had not felt this sense of calm before in Sunberth. As he walked inside he could feel the shadows embracing him. Kynier did not give his eyes time to adjust and nearly tripped on some rubble. He bent down to feel it with his hands. Stone both smooth and jagged, as well as scraps of wood. He was glad his boots were not punctured by the many sharp ends he felt. One piece of wood in particular felt like the right size to make a torch. He picked it up and felt its dimension. Taking hold of the smoother end he placed a hand on the other and concentrated on his Djed. Willing a thin layer of gell to form he coated the end of the wood with it. The first attempt did not light and he cursed in frustration. Adding more determination to his will he managed to light it.

Fire puffed to life and his eyes took a few seconds to adjust. But the sight of the inside was discouraging. Rubble and ruin were scattered about. Even here was not safe from being pillaged by the city. It should not have come as a surpise, but there had been a hope to see a remnant of civility. Holding out his light Kynier ventured deeper into the temple. The walls that had managed to stay erect had been worn by time. Kynier ran his hand over shallow carvings and brushed away webs and dust. Perhaps a mural had been upon them but had been lost to the seasons. As he roamed he questioned what secrets the old keepers could have told. What had happened here so long ago?

A voice drifted through the air. Not his own, and not his either. Kynier paused and listened hard, but heard nothing. A small chill ran down his spine giving him a shiver. He tugged on his dark cloak around his shoulders.
"Must've been nothing." But then he heard it again. Someone else was here. Kynier saw no other sources of light ahead but was sure that he wasn't alone. Intrigue nearly made him rush forward but he forced his steps to be slow and careful.

Next time he heard the voice he could tell it was a woman's. But there was no indication of another voice to be heard. Kynier stepped around a pillar and the light of his torch fell upon her. A young woman with dark hair dressed in what seemed to be cloths too large for her frame. And skin paler than any he'd seen. Then he noticed that her hair wasn't entirely dark, a few streaks of white were present and the dark strands faded to white near the tips.

"Hello," he said aloud. For a moment he stared at her curiosly with his hazel eyes. "What're you doing here?"
Sometimes the only way to win is by relinquishing a superior position.

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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kelski on May 18th, 2018, 9:35 pm

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Kelski heard the sputtering and spitting of the torch and saw its light spilling forward long before whomever got to where she was. The Shadows showed no concern nor did Kelski really because someone with nefarious purposes wouldn’t have walked up bold as could be. They would have been quieter, careful with their steps, instead of placing footfalls solidly like someone who was looking around much like she was moments before. The Kelvic stood blinking in the light, glad the sun would be up before long. She hadn’t meant to waste the whole night looking for her Master Jaren, but the Shadows had indicated he needed finding.

This man, this torchbearer, was not him. But Kelski noted the curiosity in his clear hazel eyes and how he looked around with a similar sense of history as he walked into her space and chased her Shadows away with his light. The Kelvic tilted her head and studied the man openly. She kept her hands where he could see them though she was armed well enough close to her body.

She noted he was tall, far taller than her, with medium length dark hair that was either brown or black. Kelski couldn’t tell in the changing light and the flickering of the torch. He had a wide brow that she found herself studying. His eyes were sharp, liked they missed little, and that made her the most uncomfortable of all. His size didn’t bother her. She was around large men a great deal. But she worried when their faces weren’t ruddy with drink or their eyes dull with drugs. Sunberth had a lot of drugs and even more drinks that catered to men’s misery and dulled their senses making them safer than dangerous.

This man was potentially dangerous. It wasn’t his size. It wasn’t the way he moved, which wasn’t much like a warrior. It was that his gaze was clear, intelligent, and his complexion clear of the ruddy murk that indicated drink and drug abuse.

She lifted her chin and quietly slipped one hand into her oversized shirt, keeping it close to her body. The young woman didn’t grasp her dagger, but she left her hand on her hip in close proximity. Kelski quietly swung her free hand forward, shook it out, and lifted her chin. Her hand was empty. But when her chin came up, the slave collar was prominent around her neck, and perhaps the finest thing she had on. It was worth a pretty penny. Inlaid with agate it was a heavy leather thing with a wide metal band around its middle. Much like a dog, the front had a big ring in it that held a tag that reflected a sun burst that indicated she was property of The Sun Birth Gang. Her face was covered with piercings… one in her nose, her lip, her cheek, even encircling her ears. They looked painful and uncomfortable, though the Kelvic ignored them.

Her lips were black, and when she offered him a smile and opened her mouth to speak, he saw that the inside of her mouth was black as well, much like some breeds of dog or bird had. She had a fierce expression on her face, though it looked like her normal expression and not one manifested to intimidate him. Inhuman. He should be able to tell immediately that she wasn’t human and if he had any experience at all with Kelvics, that she fell more into the animalistic range than most.

“Exploring…. Looking…. Feeling the serenity here. Do you feel it? Calm permeates everything. I expect to see priests wandering by any moment. I thought, in fact, you might be one.” She said carefully, glancing at his torch and finally offering him that smile that had been manifesting itself slowly across her fierce features.

“I am Kelski.” She knew better than to ask of his name. If he wanted her to know he’d simply offer his to her in return. Sunberth’s denizens were private, and sometimes they didn’t like what asking a name implied. “It smells like old power here… and I think this place stood before Ivak’s wrath destroyed the world. I like old places like this. Sometimes they call to me.” She offered, not knowing what else to say. Then she moved, slowly, fluidly, like a bird would. Reaching out her free hand she ran it down one of the broken columns and across a carved detail. “I… I work jewels sometimes… fancy stuff, high end jewelry. Places like this inspire me.” She said softly, wondering if he could possibly understand.
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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kynier on May 19th, 2018, 3:33 am



She wasn't human, that much was apparent when he saw how pale her eyes were. And as she spoke he could see how the inside of her mouth was different. Kynier knew not what she was from these few physical indications. Yet those were not what had made him uneasy. It was how she moved. The way her hand rested under the baggy shirt while making a show of her other. How gracefully she moved. And her blatant display of the collar.

After she said her name, Kelski, he wanted to say his but his nerves held him back. As she spoke he chanced very quick glances to his peripherals. The Sun's Birth insignia gleamed in the torchlight along with all her peircings. Each metal surface was clean. Though there was pity in his heart that she was a slave he knew that she was much more than that. Kynier didn't need him to tell him that. But what was disturbing was that she was here, alone. Slaves were always with someone, but he could neither see nor hear anyone else. Yet she had been talking to someone.

"I could sense the calm from outside. Part of that is what drew me here." She was attempting to trick him. The temple had been abandoned for a long time. And Sunberth had very few citizens of faith. He decided to make no remark about it though. Kelski's expression had not changed but a sharpness in her eyes had formed. It unsettled him. Contradictions surrounded her like the shadows of this derelict place. A slave, appearing alone late at night, who blatantly displayed her affiliation non-verbally, but did not shy away from him. And a jeweler? Not an easy skill he would imagine, and quite valuable in this city. Kelski was a mystery. Causing him to be intrigued and perturbed simultaneously.

But Kelski stammered once. Forcing words into the air without knowing what to say. She was probably just as uncomfortable as he was. And with a woman of her strange beauty there was always an easy first guess as to why. Kynier focused on her while harnessing his Djed. He wanted to see her aura. His lips barely moved as he muttered the incantation at the volume of an exhale. Like smoke from embers her aura began to emanated from her body. After a few seconds he began to feel some sensations. He could feel how tight the collar was around her throat. But the collar was more than physically uncomfortable. He could see it disrupting the flow of her aura, the piercings too.

His mind began to cloud and his eye tire. With a heavy exhale he released his focus of his Djed he blinked a couple times and pinched the bridge of his nose. As smoke faded in the wind so did her aura. She did not show it, but that collar was damaging her. Kynier had seen slaves become meek when their self-worth had been reduced to a commodity. Not Kelski, he guessed there was too much anger there. It wasn't a collar but more of a cage. And she was lashing at the bars.

"What will you do? Will you play with the charade, or cut through it?"

"I must say, Kelski, you are quite fascinating," he said slowly. Then he turned his back on her and walked around the room. Holding the torch higher Kynier searched the dark for any other movement. He didn't have the sense that she was disturbed, so who was she talking to? "Do you enjoy puzzles?" he asked with a little sincerity. "I do. And I had spent the night wandering the streets trying to find the next piece to the one I'm working on." He walked a wide circle around the room to back around the column she had touched. "No, I didn't find one. But I had never been here before and was taken by curiosity. To my surpise, I have stumbled upon another puzzle." Now he was standing five paces away from her and his eye locked on hers to judge her next reaction.

"A slave," there was an unintended trace of pity in his voice, "of the Sun's Birth. And a jeweler? How does one of such a valuable craft end up a slave?" He lowered his voice a little for his next question and did his best to make it sound gentle, "Are the stones around your neck a product of your own handiwork?"
Sometimes the only way to win is by relinquishing a superior position.

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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kelski on May 19th, 2018, 3:34 pm

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“Yes.” She said quietly, the pity unwelcome. It was one of those answers though that could have been reserved for any one of the spoken and unspoken questions he was asking. Though words came from his lips, she read more in his eyes and watched him with equal curiosity as he strode about. She turned to follow his orbit, though her feet didn’t propel her forward. He did not share his name. Was it wise of him or was he jealously hoarding it? She looked thoughtful. Her keeper and tormenter, Darvin, would have announced himself immediately as if his reputation should and in most places would proceed him. This man, however, had as much bravo, but it was the quiet reserved type that meant he needed no outward reassurances immediate recognition would give him. It made her take notice and not dismiss him immediately.

Careful Kelski. Careful. This one is smart.

She glanced around, wanting the comfort of her Shadows again, of Dawkar’s bold voice and firm nothingness. They were honest creatures, straight forward and easy to interact with. Humans were so much harder, so much more likely to deceive and destroy. Destruction was in their human nature. Was this man destructive or one of the rare sensible ones among them? Why did she feel so uncomfortable suddenly?

Kelvics were honest creatures. They tended not to lie or deceive unless they’d been around humans a long time and had bonded at least once or twice. Kelski had never bonded and never bothered to take up human traits like deception, especially to herself. The why of it… the utter why of her discomfort was apparent to her immediately. She was drawn to the man and wanted to talk to him. But humans failed her often enough and she knew the draw and the want was most likely a setup for even more disappointment. She didn’t let it stop her though. The kelvic looked her fill and then made some careful decisions.

“A bad piece of luck that struck twice.” She said as an answer to his most burning question. “First, I was born among the Svefra who value blue eyes above silver. When mine changed, instead of tossing me into the sea I was traded for supplies at the nearest port.” She said thoughtfully. “I did not live in Alvadas long. But won my freedom from the man that took me as his servant even as an infant, and went to Lhavit where I apprenticed as a jeweler to a Master there who treated my hard work fairly.” She said, summing up her entire life in just a few sentences. “I had much free time and was urged to not neglect my nature. I was wearing my feathers and was taken from the sky by more Svefra as I soared above. I did not know they had weapons that could fling nets high into the sky.” She said softly, twisting her neck suddenly, lifting her chin to the right as if the collar around her throat chafed her. “I was passed from ship to ship, currency for favors and supplies, until my last keeper traded me here to Jaren in return for repairs to his damaged ship.” She said, looking around the temple again before she met the man’s hazel eyes. “I much prefer the magic of Lhavit, its beauty and how no one was afraid to the paranoia and darkness in this decayed festering city. This temple reminds me of the city of The Sun, Moon, and Stars. It feels like Lhavit feels… like magic.” She said, unconsciously leaning out and stroking a broken column that was next ot her free hand.

“I made the collar, yes, not knowing it was for my own throat. He asked me to do it as a first project and I did it so he would be pleased. I have a knack for it. Not for stringing beads and hanging feathers, but for cutting stones and setting them in metal. For taking raw ore and turning it into art…” She added, tilting her head and studying him sharply, with a predatory mercurial gaze. Her eyes scanned him again and she raised an eyebrow.

“Now you tell me why I want to talk to you… why I’m drawn to you? A person that won’t even tell me his name.” She said, her voice a light mixture of challenge and demand.
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Kelski
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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kynier on May 20th, 2018, 12:23 am


Kynier listened and stared into those pale eyes as she told her story. It was surprising how she just laid it bare before him. A stranger she had known for only a few chimes. And regardless of the hardships she had faced, Kelski still had fire. She had a strong will, and he admired her for that. There was something about the name Jaren that was nagging at him. Like he had heard the name before, or that it had some sort of significance, but his memory couldn't grasp it.

"I was wearing my feathers and taken from the sky..." That was the missing piece to her race. He remembered being told of a breed of humans that could turn to animals. Kelvics. That was all he could really remember. If Kynier had ever met one before now he was never aware of it. But now he had to decide what to do. Kelski had been more forthright than anyone else he had met in this city. For a while now he had been getting accustomed to the deception, since he had to live with it for his own safety.

The admission of being drawn to him had caught him off guard. And now she wanted to know who he was. If he told her the truth, how much would she relay to her master? The Sun's Birth had no reason to acknowledge Kynier, but that could change. Nothing stopped him from just leaving now, except for what she could do to him, and he knew that she was dangerous. He considered it for what must have been a full chime, his heart racing the whole time. Then he finally decided.

"My name is Kynier. Like you I'm not a natural citizen of this city. I was born in Nyka. When my family left there we were attacked. My father was killed and I'm sure my mother was taken as a slave. I managed to escape the attention of the slavers and wandered the lands alone for days as a child. Until I met a Eypharian who rescued me and taught me what I know." Without looking away he tossed the torch to the side. "And like you," he held out a hand before him, palm up. Willing his Djed to take a gaseous form about his hand and to ignite into a small ball of flame. "I am more than what I seem."

"This could very well seal your fate. For what?"

Perhaps, I just want to have at least one friend in this wretched place, he thought. He stood there sustaining the fire with his Djed until he heard her response.
Sometimes the only way to win is by relinquishing a superior position.

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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kelski on May 20th, 2018, 4:36 am

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Kelski rolled Kynier’s name around inside her head, testing it out as she watched him wage war with himself. Did he know he was expressive? It wasn’t so much that his thoughts and feelings stretched across his face as they appeared in his head. It was more like he became blank. That in itself told her he was thinking deep thoughts and when she did such things it was usually an internal argument. The Kelvic tilted her head and watched him with the stillness of a raptor.

The Kelvic didn’t know where Nyka was. This side of the world was still new to her. But she felt compassion for him anyhow, knowing his sire was killed and his mother possibly enslaved. Her mercurial gaze didn’t leave his form as he tossed his torch aside and held out his hand. Flame ignited in his palm, carefully controlled and owned by the man cradling it.

The Sea Eagle gave no sign of fear when he used his magic. In fact, she relaxed visibly and shook her head sadly. “You will be less than you are now if you let others see that, Mage. Those who wield power around here are not welcome. They will hunt you and kill you and do so gladly. I’ve never seen such hate in such a place as there exists hate for mages.” She said softly, releasing her hand on her hip and easing forward to crouch down and lean against a broken pillar. Kelski reached up and ran a hand through her hair, blinking softly.

He wouldn’t know it but seeing Reimancy openly had been like a needle into her heart, pumping her full of homesickness that she was unprepared for. Kelski rubbed her temple in her half crouch, resting her rump on her heels as she quietly settled lower than Kynier. Lhavit. It was such a beautiful city where magic walked openly and no one killed someone just because they had power. “I’ve seen your type of power here only rarely. There’s a man in the cemetery who has seen more years than most humans I know… he wields it… that fire you have. But he is insane. I don’t think others know. If they did, they’d kill him like they’ll kill you.” She said quietly, shaking her head sadly.

“People here are ignorant. Uneducated. Fearful. They just know blood and pain and who can rule who. But deep inside they are soft with their drink and drugs and constant excesses. Still, they will strike hard and without warning. You should have more care…” The Kelvic added, watching him intently now.

“Why do you tell me this? You know I am a slave. The collar tells you that. My life is not my own.” She asked, her eyes still on him, still watchful. That was a piece of a puzzle he had presented which had surprised her. Humans weren’t trustful. They weren’t forthright. And they certainly weren’t honest. Was it because he wasn’t from here? That he was from this Nyka place? Or was it something else. Kelski closed her eyes a moment. She let the calm of the Temple wash over her. This was a good place… she was certain of it. She could tell just by the way it felt.
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Kelski
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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kynier on May 20th, 2018, 12:12 pm


Though her posture relaxed Kelski's reaction was not what he had been expecting. Kynier didn't know what to expect. Perhaps a little awe, but instead it had been melancholy. His breath had grown heavy and his mind light with effort. As she crouched down against the pillar he ceased releasing his Djed and the flame died. Compounded with the ache of his injuries and his long day, he felt exhausted.

Kynier turned to another broken pillar that was barely more than a stump. He lowered himself gently to sit on the floor and lean against it with a heavy groan. His eyes felt heavy and to take the weight off his feet was its own relief. Kelski warned him of the danger he was already in. It was one he had heard before from Bourin. It felt good to hear her say it. To again see someone who showed concern for another's well-being. Kynier couldn't help but smile a little at that.

"For two years I have lived here. And you are now the only one who has seen my magic and is still alive to talk about it." Kynier looked at her meaningfully. Hoping his eyes expressed the other half of that thought. Because for some reason he didn't want to have to say it. It had taken this long to find someone he could trust with that secret. Yet it was sooner than he had expected. He knew it was only a matter of time. Perhaps he was unwilling to wait any longer to share it. "I have kept it secret. Right now, out there, I'm nobody." His gaze trailed off to the ceiling to watch the shadows dance with the firelight. "I appreciate your concern, Kelski. It helps to assure me that telling you this secret will not be a regret."

He closed his eyes for a moment and took a deep breath of the calmness in the air. Immediately he felt himself approaching a comfortable slumber and forced his eyes wide open. With a gentle shake of his head he tried to brush off the urge to sleep. For some reason being here was more comfortable than being home. It was a sense he had not felt for some time.

"The hatred for mages in Sunberth comes from a man named Obal Causten. He was a wizard with several apprentices. They took this city by force and ruled it until there was a rebellion. This happened not too long ago, making it a fresh scar on the city. The denizens have seen the worst things that magic can do because for a time it was their leash. That man in the cemetery, was mad you say? Hmph, Then at some point during his life he over exerted himself with his magic. If one is not careful their mind is permanently damaged from its use."

Kynier slowly rolled up his sleeves to show the bandages on his forearms. They were due to be changed but he couldn't do anything about that right now. "A few days ago some men tried to kill me. They didn't even know that I am what I am. Since then I haven't felt that being a sorcerer here puts me in more danger, it just limits what I can do to defend myself. So now I must use magic as a last resort when out in the public." He rolled his sleeves back down and returned his gaze to her pale eyes. It may have been due to his exhaustion, but they seemed to have a mesmerizing quality to them. When she closed them his gaze migrated to her hair and the way it framed her face. He had to think for a chime on how to express his feelings to appropriately answer her question.

"I don't like the idea of someone's life not being their own. That's the main thing I want to change here. But regardless of your... situation, you have not allowed it to break your spirit. I feel admiration for that magnitude of willpower. But telling you was probably selfish of me. Truthfully, I'm tired of being alone. And it's nice to have a real conversation with someone again."
Sometimes the only way to win is by relinquishing a superior position.

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Kynier
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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kelski on May 20th, 2018, 3:39 pm

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She could tell that her response surprised him as much as his reveal had surprised her. She looked wistful at that, knowing that such things… such surprises… were rare in Sunberth. She was relaxed perched with her ass resting on her heels, booted toes balanced on the floor. While she saw he was focused on her, she decided to focus on all around them, assuming watch because he was not doing so. And while her eyes remained on him, her excellent hearing roamed out as she tilted her head, periodically letting her eyes scan the abandoned temple. Kelski decided she’d keep them safe while they were distracted. He seemed… somehow vulnerable and she didn’t like that thought.

He reminded her so much of home… .the honest open forthrightness of the mages of Lhavit. It killed her a little inside to know Sunberth would chew him up and spit him out if he gave the great rotting corpse of the city a chance.

She liked, on the other hand, that he was comfortable enough to relax too. When he groaned, she tilted her head and she looked concerned all over again. Exhaustion lined his face despite the smile. She wasn’t sure why he smiled until he told her she was the only one that knew he was a mage. The Kelvic knew what it was like to have secrets… sometimes they weighted on a persons shoulders until they were a heavy burden, almost a physical weight that was hard to bear. So, in telling her, it eased the weight she decided, even just a little, and he felt that. She was glad.

“I’m honored that you shared this with me. I will tell no one. It is no one’s business but your own.” She said softly, almost reassuringly, though Kelski wasn’t the sort that would reassure anyone. Truth was, humans had taught her to hate them, and despite all her natural drive to find just one of them to bond with, she felt that her life experiences had precluded even that from happening.

“And maybe, someday, you can teach me about how to make the fire. It would be… handy to have in my position.” She said softly, hopefully, sorry even to this day that she’d never apprenticed to a mage in Lhavit when she was so busy learning her trade. It would have saved her life more than once in Sunberth. Instead she’d had to turn to her deal with Darvin, and that deal had turned out badly for her.

“Life here is hard. Your magics will save you, I am certain, though you will have to kill anyone who sees them that would think to use the knowledge against you. Because if they can, they will. Had I had such tools at my disposal, my life would have been easier. Instead, I’ve had to make poor bargains to learn things that are acceptable defenses here.” She added, watching him carefully.

“You look ill… not with disease but with exhaustion.” Kelski said suddenly, her voice concerned.

The bandages he revealed made sense then. Kelski wished again she had a measure of healing, but she had none. Instead, as he talked, she rose up and moved closer. She took one of his arms in her hand and gently rolled the sleeves back up. She peeked under the bandages, removing the wraps and looking thoughtfully at them. They looked like they needed changing, the cloth used to form them already soaked with bits of blood and fluid that looked normal for healing wounds.

He continued to speak as she acted, her touch gentle on his arm nearest to her. She removed the bandage all together, tucking his rolled down sleeve up and into his armpit to hold it out of the way. A dagger materialized in her hand, seemingly out of nowhere, and she rested his arm against his body as she turned the blade towards her own flesh and neatly cut through the warn sleeves of her own boys’ shirt, turning it into a sleeveless tank as she first liberated one sleeve and then the other, cutting the cuffs into strips and making new bandages out of the arms. She laid one aside, probably for his other arm, and folded the majority of the remaining sleeve into a clean but worn bandage. She pulled out a waterskin she carried in a small pack she had at her back and gently rinsed the wound before she carefully tucked the sleeve-turned-bandage into a fold over the wounds and used the strip of cuff divided in two to hold it in place as wraps.

Kelski changed sides, letting her loose hair fall forward and cascade over him as she worked to do the same with his other arm if he let her. She was thorough and listened to him carefully as she worked. It struck at her heart when he said he was tired of being alone… and that having a real conversation with someone was nice. She knew exactly what he meant.

The Kelvic was so close he could smell her clean scent, and now that her arms were bare he could see that she was well muscled but painfully thin. “I know what that is like.” She said softly, quietly, and looked across her handiwork at him as if she wanted to say more. “Everyone here wants something from you…. from me… from the person walking down the street. And they will do anything they can to take it from you. You have your magic, but it is not enough because it must be kept a secret. You must find someone to teach you weapon work, a blade of some sort is best, to fend off the people that will take from you… even things like your life. That is.. if you don’t know bladework already.” Kelski said softly.

“And you are free, so you have more options than I did. I needed to learn this. I knew it as soon as I came here. My Master assigned a guard to me, a big brute of a man called Darvin. They had an understanding between them. As long as I did work for my Master, the work he wanted me to do in my workshop, his guard could do with me what he wanted. I made a bad bargain with this guard. He was good with daggers, you see, and I wanted to learn. In Sunberth, no one thinks anything of slaves carrying weapons in the streets … as long as they are openly owned and openly controlled. Darvin makes drugs, potions and brews to make people relax, to give them pleasure, to take them away from the pain of being here… but not everything he makes is good. He experiments a lot. And when he makes something new or has a new batch, he needed someone to test them on. Our bargain was simple… he tests them on me in exchange for lessons on fighting. So not only is my life not my own, but it belongs to two different men in two different ways. One owns me, one just borrows me with his patron’s permission. So I understand being alone… and not liking it. It’s not a good situation for a Kelvic.” She said thoughtfully.

“I’ve always been told that we were a designed race… a race that serves. We find someone we admire, appreciate, even love… and bond with them. But I’ve served. I don’t like it. None of them deserved a Kelvic.” She said with a hint of anger in her voice. Finished with his bandaging now, she rolled down his other sleeve, covering her handiwork, and settled at the foot of his pillar, beside him but still on the floor.

“I’m not sure there’s a difference anyhow.” She added, glancing at him, then resettling. She looked thoughtful for a moment. There was more she could say but she didn’t. He was easy to talk to and it would be easy to say too much.

“You look tired. You shouldn’t be out here like that. Tired people do stupid things. Why are you in this temple anyhow?” She asked, curiously, knowing she was because she was restless and had slipped the leash of her handler.
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They laugh at me because I am different.
I laugh at them because they are all the same.
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Unknown Allegiances (Kynier)

Postby Kynier on May 21st, 2018, 3:50 am


Kynier smiled more at her assurance. Though he had been a solitary person most of his life, there was always at least one person he could talk to. There was a small hope that Kelski could be that next person for him here. But that was most likely wishful thinking. She was a slave. Unless he could perchase her freedom, she would be kept to her tasks and rarely afford more encounters like this.

Kelski's suggestion to teaching her was thought provoking. He was so inexperienced he had never considered the idea of a having his own apprentice. That was a long way off though, especially for Reimancy. Until he was quite confident, any attempt to perform a res initiation was too dangerous. For now Kynier left that one alone. Whatever encounters with Kelski he had after tonight would decide whether he should entertain the idea.

When she rolled up his sleeves he did not protest. Perhaps she had some talent in healing. Certainly he didn't, so she couldn't do any worse than he had already done. Kynier missed where the dagger came from, but was not surprised in the least that she had it. Now that she was closer he could see how gaunt she was. In combination with the paleness of her skin it gave her an almost sickly look. The muscles on her arms were lean, but it was clear to see that despite the value of her skills, she was not treated well by... his moral standards.

As she poured the water on his right arm he winced only a little. It was the shallowest cut and mainly itched. She was able to bandage it quickly after cleaning it. But when she leaned over him for his left arm his blood stirred a little. The way her hair brushed over his arm as well as the her scent. He could not describe it, but it was pleasant. Yet the flutter in his system faded quickly when she cut away the bandage of his left arm. The deep cut through the thicker part of his forearm had a stench. Kelski was probably aware of how unpleasant this would be and had started to talk.

Kynier looked away from it into the darkness and listened to what she said. When the poured the water the pain erupted. Instead of tensing his left arm he tensed the rest of his body and part of the agony escaped his throat. "I know some techniques with a short sword, but my teacher wasn't much of a blade expert." Then she really described her situation. Kynier did not think it could've been worse, but she continued and proved him wrong.

When she finished sat next to him against the pillar. Her view on her race was grim, understandably. Looking into the darkness thoughtfully he dared to speak. "Animals can be trained to serve. But without loyalty it's meaningless. Servitude is to have your life possessed by someone. Loyalty, if strong enough, can cause you to choose to give your life for someone." Kynier took the soiled wrappings and tossed them to the ground. Holding out a hand in their direction he brought forth his Djed for an opening to the void. When it came half a chime later the bandages simply fell through the hole in the floor. He released his Djed and the portal closed shortly after.

He looked more than tired. That last bit could've knocked him under. Kynier couldn't even remember what time it was. So late that it was early. "I recently discovered something about the Daggerhand, and had spent most of the day and night trying to learn more. Unsuccessfully. I was going to go home, but the silhouette of the temple caught my eye. Like I said earlier, I've never been here before. So why not have a quick look?" Truthfully he hadn't been that tired when he walked in. Using his Djed for three schools of magic had taken almost all of what he had left.

He turned his head so that she was in his peripheral. The torchlight played a intriguing dance upon her pale skin and shaded hair. Regardless of his own troubles he wanted to help her. Though, he could hardly help himself. But she had just shown him kindness that few have ever shown. He did not know if he should act on this altruistic impulse.

"She could be a valuable resource. Working with treasures and hearing the dealings of the Sun's Birth. You would be a fool not to use her."

Not the direction his thought were going. Kynier tried to brush the words out of his mind. With a hand he started fidgeting the brass holy symbol of Akajia he had fastened around his neck and under his cloths. What're the secrets worth keeping, and which ones should be shared? he prayed. No inspiration came to him. So instead, he decided to expand on information already exchanged.

"Darvin, seems like quite a shyke." He said flatly, with what would be a failed attempt for humor. "Tell me more of Jaren though. I feel like I've heard his name before."
Sometimes the only way to win is by relinquishing a superior position.

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Kynier
Delves in Darkness
 
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