Solo [Port Tranquil] What Pride Had Wrought

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The Diamond of Kalea is located on Kalea's extreme west coast and called as such because its completely made of a crystalline substance called Skyglass. Home of the Alvina of the Stars, cultural mecca of knowledge seekers, and rife with Ethaefal, this remote city shimmers with its own unique light.

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[Port Tranquil] What Pride Had Wrought

Postby Mauriel on October 21st, 2018, 6:26 pm

70th of Fall, 518 AV

Still shaken by the madness that consumed her some days ago, the Ethaefal headed to her birthplace, Port Tranquil. She would not pray to Leth or seek a friend, still in distress and denial, but she did seek peace, and that place did once instill it in her. She smiled to herself, thinking it was very aptly named.

She was in a modest dress, her cape around her arms, and shoes freshly put on after transformation. The evening was chilly. Some of the denizens of the Start of the Kalea would say it was promisingly chilly, though Mauriel did not understand what they meant by that. Winter was approaching, of course the weather would get harsher. There was some noise here and there from belated sailors, fishermen, and rope-makers, but with every chime and every step she was leaving it behind her, until the waves and rustling of sand under her shoes were the only sounds surrounding her.

Soon enough, she found what she was looking for. A huge rock on the beach, unpolished enough for the Ethaefal to know it came from the mountain above rather than the sea. And as surely as Syna yields to Leth each night, this rock will eventually yield to the tide, but for now it was here. A waypoint, landmark of her recent past.

She took a moment to relish in the feeling of connectedness with Being she seldom felt, but which this sight had inspired in her. She was afraid to spoil it with her presence, but soon enough the magic was gone and she just sat down. The familiar discomfort was oddly calming, as she looked to the sky. Moonlight slithering over her skin made her feel alive, but she was avoiding Leth's gaze still, looking at Zintila's infinite canvas instead.

She began humming gently, but as the silence that surrounded her ate up the melody, she started singing softly, ever more confidently as she became more and more starkly aware of her solitude.

If you would come and listen, a story you'll be told,
A story lost to time, one only I would know.
I come from places unexplored, places where Gods dwell
No living witness knows the tale, which feels to me unwell.


It was something she came up with while plucking at her lute at home shyly. She never performed that in the Scholar's Demise, it felt very inappropriate, but the song was close to her heart. The hubris was in intentional contrast with how she really felt about herself. Or was it? She could be really arrogant in both thoughts and speech, but she considered that a defense mechanism, not an intrinsic quality.

As she sang, lights started flashing over the sky, stars slowly making their way down across it. Her voice shook in surprise, but she resumed her song. She knew it to be untrue, but found it somewhat romantic that the skies would weep to her song. Heh, no hubris my ass.


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[Port Tranquil] What Pride Had Wrought

Postby Mauriel on October 21st, 2018, 8:46 pm

Ethaefal's self-indulgence was interrupted when a light flash blinded her, her entire body shaking from the intensity of the sound nearby, further away from the docks. She turned to find a small fire breaking out not too far from there, on the edges of the Undying. Despite her efforts to improve her survival skills, she wasn't very comfortable threading there, but the literal fallen star made her desperate to investigate.

She kept singing her little song to herself as she stood up, picking her bag up to walk to the site. She felt like a mother singing a lullabye to her little one after a nightmare, only she was both the mother and the child, and the nightmare might not have been just that. She felt the chills thinking about what she experienced and saw in her delirium again. Thankfully, her fear was under control, for it was not the fear that got to her, but the deep, incessant insistence that something was wrong with her. Either she was unworthy, arrogant, impulsive, or when she'd try and battle it all and be a bigger person, she'd be sick and mad. She was slowly getting more angry at the world and herself, at this point seeing it as unfair and pointless for her to keep feeling this things.

Throbbing with these feelings, only my kin ever knew,
I feel lost and alone, my eyes fixed to the Moon.
My lips servants of music, many people I chanced to meet,
Yet song and dance and love failed to quench the thirst beneath.

She did not even notice that her song grew quieter as her pride had been replaced with uncertainty as she stepped towards the unknown. Step by step she started feeling rater hot in her furry cloak, though she had no smart idea what to do with such a heavy garment other than keep wearing it. The fire was actually spreading, fueled by dry autumn leaves, but the point of impact was not in the forest itself and looked like it was slowly cooling down.

The crater itself was not too deep or large, and it was covered in some steaming dark material Mauriel did not recognize. It certainly doesn't look like skyglass, she thought, concluding that she had, in fact, lied to Zach that one time. She ended up sitting down again, a few dozen feet from the hole in the ground, concluding that it needed at least a few bells to properly cool down.

Was this some sort of a sign? Was it another crazy dream, or worse off, a hallucination? For the first time, the Ethaefal sought Zintila for guidance. Lady of the stars, she referred to the fallen Goddess with a verse of her poem, is this your doing? Is it something I should meddle with, or is it a part of a divine thread I'm incapable of weaving?


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[Port Tranquil] What Pride Had Wrought

Postby Mauriel on October 21st, 2018, 10:34 pm

Mauriel kept singing her little song to pass time, gently humming the parts she still hadn't figured out the lyrics to. The melody was high-pitched, but slow and gentle. The proximity of the heat source was rather helpful in her not catching a cold for irresponsibly deciding to sit around without a campfire, so she was happy to stargaze at another spot at least.

A couple of times she impatiently approached the impact spot, but was met with scorching heat radiated into the air around it. In the end, she ended up lying on the rocky beach and stargazing for what must have been bells. The stars were much prettier from here than Lhavit itself. The city was so bright all the time, they sky was not as clear as it was out here. It was a bit like mist that enveloped the city last season, just very far away, decorated with little lights everywhere, like the city had been for the Moon Festival. Mauriel wondered whether Zintila presided over anything else before her fall. Perhaps she lost an entire domain upon losing her powers. The beauty she was witnessing was so enticing, she could have sworn her to be the Godess of abstract art as well.

When the crater finally cooled down, Mauriel actually had trouble convincing herself to stand up and brave it. She tried singing the song for encouragement again, but the moment was long gone, and with it its effectiveness. She was growing cold and tired, tho, and running out of excuses. She stood up, approaching the hole. It wasn't very deep, perhaps going to her torso at the deepest, nor was it unbearably big. She touched its edges with her shoe gently first, finding it firm and not to warm anymore. Squatting to check by hand, she found out that it was still pretty hot, but her shoes were able to withstand it. She had no gloves, but it shouldn't be able to burn her really, it just caused intense discomfort to touch. She tried to slowly lower herself into the crater, but she slipped and slit down to the middle.

Her ankle was somewhat burned by a combination of heat and traction as she slipped, but it wasn't too bad. She stood back up quickly to minimize contact and squatted again to touch the affected area. Most of the pain was gone as she aged it a day, a minor swelling left as a reminder. She continued staring at it, though it was not the minor injury that caught her interest so completely. There was light on her injury, and raising her eyes to meet it, she saw a silvery stone, no larger than her palm. It immediately reminded her of Leth, so pale and light. Without hesitation she reached out for it, enamored by the round orb.

It felt very weird holding the stone itself. It was light, yet sturdy, and it somehow felt wrong. Was this meant for her? Was it meant for everyone? Maybe the stone just happened to fall down, much like she did, and was now a piece of heaven, cast out for an eternity. A very fitting gift, if it had indeed been meant for her. She examined it some more, but found nothing else of interest. The thought of selling it never even crossed the Ethaefal's mind. She ended up tearing a few pages from her notebook, wrapping it up in them, and packing it into her backpack. She wasn't sure why she felt the need to protect its surface, for it didn't seem like a vial of ink or any of the other contents of her bag could damage it, but its faint glow seemed like something easily disturbed.

Having had enough for one evening, and no longer in any sort of mood to sit around trapped in melancholic thoughts, she climbed back up carefully, and headed home.


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[Port Tranquil] What Pride Had Wrought

Postby Mauriel on October 21st, 2018, 11:30 pm

71st of Fall, 518 AV
around the 3rd bell

Mauriel was at home at this point, still humming the song of hers, while writing down lyrics she had thought up on her little journey tonight on the wrinkly pieces of paper she brought the rock back home at. She decided to hide it among her clothes, increasingly worried about security of her little hut. Ragespike wasn't exactly an unknown for those who knew her, and now this was here, along with her wages and some pricey clothes. She was considering a better lock or even a better apartment, but there's nothing that would draw a target on her back like public shows of security concerns.

She yawned, perhaps because she was sitting out of the moonlight for a bit too long. She set her quill down to go out for a bit when the most strange thing happened. Her knees were suddenly touching the back of her little desk, while they were previously incapable of going that far. She pushed her chair back, looking down only to see her arms seemed bigger than she knew them to be. She stood up to go dig up the stone to compare her palm with, but immediately realized it was sitting besides her on the table neatly. She could have sworn she hid it among the clothes! The palm of her hand was indeed larger than before. Wait. She looked over to the door. She grew way higher too!

Was this another illusion? What was going on? She had no idea what to do. If it was not a fragment of her fucked up mind, it surely had to do with the stone she brought. But how should she deal with it? Was it dangerous? How long has she been growing for without noticing? Will it stop? Questions raced through her head in a haze.

She then noticed that she also put on weight. She had curves she was previously not been blessed with, but also fat on her stomach and thighs that she was in no way used to. It was not too bad relative to her new height, but what in the world was going on. She screamed again and one of her neighbors got out to see what was going on.

"What in the world are you-" his grumpiness was cut off by shock as he saw her staring at him in terror. He lived really close and they'd been running into each other regularly, despite never having gone further than greetings.

"It's not just me, is it?"

He just shook his head. She lowered hers, only to find the stone by her feet. Was she really going mad? Was this man a fragment of her imagination as well, or was this stone just some crazy curse that she won't be able to get rid of?

Without a word to her poor neighbor, she just went back into her house and shut herself in, not bothering to pick the stone up. It was bound to show up either way.


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[Port Tranquil] What Pride Had Wrought

Postby Mauriel on October 22nd, 2018, 9:26 pm

Dawn Rest
It was needless to say that Mauriel's night was spent sleepless, but this particular night was more similar to other people's sleepless nights than the usual. She was extremely angry and scared. What was this goddamn rock and what was it doing to her? Bells have proven that her growth seemed to stop at least temporarily, but it hardly made her happy. At least ending up a complete giantess would be kind of eccentric, this was just... different. She no longer felt like the elegant beauty she took herself as, her thighs suddenly rubbing against each other, and her chubby belly stretching her dresses to their limits. Not to mention their length being hardly what it used to be.

There were gorgeous aspects of her new look, of course, and so many things she could use to her advantage. Her height made her way more noticeable and made her presence stronger and even more elegant, and the curves made her look feminine and attractive. But Mauriel was blind to all that, choosing to see only the flaws and focusing on what others might think. Whether it was luck or her demise, she did not own a mirror, so she lacked perspective when it came to her changes a bit.

She decided to take her anger out on the damn rock, but had soon given up realizing that throwing it around, stomping on it, or trying to carve into it with a knife, failed to leave any visible marks on its surface. Of any kind, not even a scratch. The damn thing was resting in the corner where it was last thrown.

She tried playing her lute, but had quickly realized that she was uncoordinated in her new body. It was far from having to relearn how to walk, but finesse was still beyond her, and muscle memory was lying to her. That made her even more insecure and nervous, and she was at a loss on what more to do in anticipation of her transformation, which was among the causes of her peculiar mood. If the growth affected her celestial, eternally beautiful, form as it did, what must it have done to the Akvatari one? She was hoping beyond hope that she would transform into her usual self and that the effect would not transfer, though it seemed unlikely.

Insecure because of repeated failures with the lute, she started singing. That one thing didn't change, her voice still producing the same dulcet melodies with equal ease. She sang to herself softly as she prepared for work, washing herself as much as she could without visiting a bathe, and replacing her clothes with clean and more elegant ones. Everything was done in impatient anticipation of incoming transformation, so even her song was cheery and inviting, as if she was enticing her other form to come. She sang a bit of Spark, trying to just feel normal, trying to remind herself of who she was and what was important. She wrote a song to this city, and she'll write many for each stop of her journey through Mizahar, and she'll sing them at the top of her lungs to whoever will listen, and that was what mattered.

As the sun lit the torn paper on her desk with some of the lyrics she had been practicing, Ethaefal's golden horns and sun-kissed hair were replaced with her regular brown waves. Her size was still unbearably odd. Yes, she has also gained weight in this form, but a lot of it was concentrated in her tail, while her upper body was roughly similar proportionally. However, it was substantially harder to move. Her tail had to drag a way heavier and taller body.

She looked down on her lute, but decided it was best left at home. Her voice will have to hold this morning for a full shift, because she would not disgrace her workplace with a subpar performance. The stone was packed in her bag, because she preferred carrying it willingly than it appearing beside her randomly. If this sudden change was not enough to weird out those still holding her in any sort of regard after her episode of madness, a magical stone following her surely would.

She reached for the door, but then turned around, too nervous to exit. Her breath was becoming rapid, the slow ticking of her heart turning into a war drum. Come on, Mauriel, don't be an idiot, she tried reasoning with herself, You're just a bit bigger, as if anyone will care. You can make use of this, turn it around. Come on, just snap out of it. But nothing helped. She was soon on the floor gasping for breath, cursing her stupid self. Why did she keep being so goddamn vain? Mauriel would, of course, deny it to anybody, and consciously try and avoid overthinking appearances, for she was embarrassed of being that way, but ultimately she was a bit of a slave to them. She thought that being honest with herself meant acknowledging that it was her Leth-gifted beauty and luck that carried her so quickly up the ladder here, and that she'd still be struggling out of poverty if it were not for the privilege they awarded her. The Ethaefal was unaware how blinded she was to the true kindness and empathy of those surrounding her by her own self-centered vanity and attempt to pin her own success on something out of her control.

She thought that if she decided not to exit the house, her panic would stop, but she knew full well that she was being dishonest with herself when trying it. Of course she would head to work as soon as she calmed down, money was kind of important. She reached for a peace of paper she already tore up earlier that night and started tearing it into little bits, one at a time. The crunchy sound and gentle texture managed to take her mind off of other things. One by one, she added the little pieces to a pile in front of her, which was slowly acquiring a dune shape. Her breathing slowed down a bit, though every time she noticed that she felt like she was going to lose it again.

She smiled at her own silliness gently. She did not know what, but something sparked a warm and comforting feeling towards herself that she yearned for ever since her fall. She started singing to herself softly, almost as if she was trying to rock herself asleep. She still felt useless and ugly and worthless, that did not change. But something about her outlook did change, making that more bearable. Perhaps it had to do with her recent distance from Leth, for she no longer felt like she lived only for Him and that her existence was merely for fulfillment of her duty towards him. Perhaps there was a spark of anger in there somewhere, misdirected at him, over her thinking such a thing in the first place. She started seeing beauty in her ineptitude, for while it might have been pathetic and she might not have been living up to the responsibilities towards herself and others, there was something distinctly mortal about her newfound struggles, something she hated about them initially, but something she was now yearning to integrate and accept and perhaps even aim for. A struggle of her own, for herself, and no one else.

She would not be going to work today. She could not bring herself to reach for that door again. She tried to convince herself that the couple would understand, but she truly had no idea would they. Yes, her transformation would be evident, but she no longer knew whether she was worth their buck with all the problems she carried with her. But today, she could not care. Today was about unpacking all of the things this damned stone opened her eyes to. She looked at it again, peacefully waiting for her in the corner. She saw Leth in it again, before diverting her gaze, like an angry child who still wants attention of their parent, but will not admit it.


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total word count: 3492
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Mauriel
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[Port Tranquil] What Pride Had Wrought

Postby Madeira Craven on November 13th, 2018, 12:33 am

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Mauriel

Skills
  • Meditation: 4xp
  • Singing: 3xp
  • Observation: 5xp
  • Composition: 2xp
  • Investigation: 2xp
  • Logic: 2xp
  • Cosmetology: 1xp
  • Endurance: 1xp
  • Philosophy: 1xp

Lores
  • Meditation: finding serenity
  • Meditation: using song to meditate
  • Investigation: looking for evidence
  • Lore of the properties of the Fallen Star
  • Lore of the effect of the Fallen Star
  • Logic: deducing cause and effect
  • Meditation: introspection
  • Insecurities: the price of vanity
  • Meditation: the use of distraction
  • Philosophy: an evolving purpose in life

Awards & Retribution


Notes
I love that Mauriel has real human flaws that come though your writing of her. Its stuff like this that makes her feel very real. <3

PS: Tho is actually spelt though. There's three unnecessarily silent words on the end, but there you go. :p
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Madeira Craven
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