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Dev'ania and Madeira investigate the strange symbol that appeared on many doors in Lhavit

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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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Postby Madeira Craven on March 29th, 2019, 5:48 am

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42nd of Spring, 519


It was that strange, transitory time in Lhavit, where the people who shared Leth's proclivity for night were returning from their revelry, and those who woke with Syna's warm embrace were leaving to start their day. These two waves often met in the middle, as dawn chased away the night, and collected like eddies in taverns and restaurants and sleepy plazas to mingle and trade the secrets of the night for the rumours of the day. But this dawn, of all dawns, those eddies were full rivers, and that babble of news had erupted into a storm, as those who woke in their beds and those returning to them saw the same symbol painted on their doors.

It was a simple rendition of a mask, painted in blood, with inverted triangles for eyes and a dagger clasped between praying hands. What it meant, who it was aimed at, and who painted the symbol was a mystery.

The Scholar's Demise, that entertained such eddies in its normal routine, found itself full to bursting on this particular morning. On every pair of lips were the same questions: Who? Why? How?

Madeira sat with a group of women at a table at the back of the bar, trading gossip in hushed whispers over glasses of whiskey and wine. Gaudy and macabre rings flashed on half her fingers and she idly swished the contents of her glass, and her legs crossed and uncrossed fitfully under a heavy blue velvet skirt. She was trading jabs and tales with a lightness in her thick accent, but her pale eyes betrayed how preoccupied she was. They flickered over the other patrons periodically, looking for her next drinking companions for when she had finally wrung these women dry of what they knew of this mystery.

"I've heard it's on the door of every Shinya." One woman spoke over the lip of her glass, her heavily massacred eyelashes hanging dark and mysterious over her eyes. "I bet this is some vigilante out to punish the criminal and violent."

"But Calla, it was on my door too!" her companion squeaked, a nervous little mouse of a woman who seemed to be taking this incident much more seriously.

"Doesn't anybody think it's weird that this happened exactly a season after that Penrose woman went on a rampage on Tenten?" a third woman spoke, frowning thoughtfully into her fruity drink. "I'm with Calla, this is about violence or something."

"It was on mine too", Madeira offered. "But I've never broken the law." Here, at least, she added in her mind. The image of the blood on her door flashed in her mind, and she had to fight to keep he smile on her face. The fact that her omnipresent, Architectrix riddled house had no idea who had painted the symbol there, or why, sent a shiver up her spine. If they could walk her grounds undetected who's to say they couldn't dig up something about her eclectic past?

"Well how can we be sure?" the first woman shot at her. "You two might be secret serial killers and we'd never know." She looked rather excited at the thought of having a potential murderer at her table.

"Mh-hm, but then how would that person know either?" the third woman rebuttaled, punctuating her point with a cherry on a cocktail stick.

As the three women descended into bickering Madeira tuned them out. Chewing thoughtfully on her lip she traced the mysterious symbol on the table with the tip of her finger. Something about it bothered her, though she couldn't articulate why. She had never seen it before in her life, so why did it feel strangely familiar?

"What if", Madeira interjected loudly into their argument, "this is more than one person? I mean, all these people getting marked, in one night, undetected? That's insane. So, what if this is an organization? And perhaps they are targeting other organizations. I hear it was on every Tower members door, the Etherial Opera House and it's members, the Shinya, along with Elena and Rothsam and their students. What if this is some sort of anti-establishment terrorists?" It was reasonable, she supposed. But did that mean the date was just a coincidence?

"Not everyone at Etherial" a woman at the table sniffed disdainfully. "My husband is a singer there and we didn't have anything freaky on our door."

"Plus, I don't belong to any of those!" the mouse woman pipped up nervously, picking away at her plate.

Madeira tapped the table, frustration digging trenches between her eyebrows. She was missing something very obvious here. Was she really so rusty after a year away? She used to solve murders and dig up secrets and investigate hauntings as her daily work as a Spiritist. What was more, she was good at it. Now that she merely taught it, was she losing her edge? Someone walked right up to her sentient front door, drenched it in blood, and she really couldn't figure out who it was?

Never the less, she was sure she had gotten everything she could out of these women. She made an excuse about refilling her drink and left, squeezing her way over to the long bar. Who should she question next? What should she even be asking? Watering holes like these were great for opinions, ideas, witnesses and gossip, but she needed more. She needed clues, a lead, anything. She would never sleep again until she figured out what this symbol meant or what it wanted.

She rapt smartly on the bar to call a barmaid.
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Postby Dev'Ania on March 30th, 2019, 4:19 pm


An unusual morning for the people of Lhavit, the Scholar’s Demise was predictably full of patrons. Chatter filled the air of the tavern as people discussed the rumors of the marks that appeared on the doors of many people in the city. Tables were full of groups of people talking about the mysterious event as they drank out of their glass cups.

Dev’Ania had arrived early to work hoping to get more information on what was happening. She listened in on various conversations as she went around serving drinks. “It’s on the door of so many people in the city! I don’t think this is some kind of joke.” A pair of two men sat across from each other, both eating a plate of bread and cheese. The second man spoke jokingly about the incidents, but Dev could tell the other was a bit frightened. “Look, it was probably some rotten kids having fun. It isn’t that serious.” As she placed refills of their drinks on the table, they stopped talking for a tick and thanked her with a smile. Dev’Ania continued to listen to them as she walked away.

The Konti was curious. She wanted to know more about what was happening. She, herself, had seen the symbols on various doors as she walked to the tavern. People stared at the symbols, whispering to each other, as they walked by. Dev had no idea what they meant or why they were there, but they gave her a feeling of uneasiness. Maybe it was just the sight of blood dripping from the doors that frightened her. Whatever it was, Dev’Ania wanted to learn more. All she knew was that it was not on her door.

People came in an out of the tavern, whispering away. Dev had finished serving a round of drinks and was now cleaning off an empty table. Next to her was a table of women sipping wine, and conversating, to no surprise, about the marks. Leaned over the table, wiping it down, Dev'Ania listened in on their discussion. She zoned in on them, blocking out the other noises coming from the tavern. Surely, these women would have some information about what was happening. Women always had the latest gossip on what was going on around the city.

One of the women spoke of every Shinya having one on their door. Another spoke of her door having one. They had a theory that the markings were made by some sort of vigilante going after criminals and those who are violent. If that was the case, why would they be going after the Shinya? Aren't they the ones who protect the city?

Dev's focus was all on the words spoken by the women. She continued wiping down the table aimlessly, staring at the women. "What if this is an organization?" One of the women mentioned the possibility. It didn't sound very far off to Dev'Ania. How else could one person do so many doors in only a couple hours?

Noticing how she was staring at the group of women, Dev quickly looked away. She gathered the leftover cups on the table and returned them behind the bar. With so many people in the tavern today, it would be a great opportunity to perform something, but Dev decided against it. Would anyone really pay attention to her? They were more focused on the symbols.

The blonde woman contemplated what the mark could have meant as she stood behind the bar. She zoned out, gazing over the crowd of chatting customers. The bartender behind the bar made drinks hastily. She glanced back at Dev'Ania, noticing that she was standing there. "Ahem." The bartender cleared her throat at Dev, prompting her to get back to work.

Dev'Ania regained her focus and began wiping down the bar. One of the women from the other table had now sat down at the bar. Dev approached her a smile on her face, "Worn out by the other women?" Dev gave a small chuckle and placed down the damp rag. "Anything I could get for you, ma'am?"
Last edited by Dev'Ania on May 28th, 2019, 7:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Marked

Postby Gemma Parker on March 30th, 2019, 9:31 pm

Gemma rolled the tension out of her shoulder as she stepped out into the rain, thankful for the poncho that kept her warm and dry. Beneath the poncho she wore her normal herbalist’s garb. She held her gloved arms across her chest to fend off the chill in the damp air that had caused so much hacking and wheezing amongst the people of Lhavit. The weather had no favorites, it seemed. Rich and poor alike were seen in The Catholicon, though Gemma did note that there were more of the latter.

She had just finished her shift at work, thankful to finally be getting some use out of her arm, and doubly grateful to finally be over the dumb pneumonia. She had no intention of repeating that experience. She was planning to head down to the Tenten rest house for a nap before getting ready for her class at the academy, but after making her way down the winding stairs that led to The Catholicon, she looked up and stopped, her mouth agape. On the door of three of the houses in the small square were three copies of a symbol, painted in red. They had clearly been painted on, but Gemma was sure they hadn’t been there when she’d gone to work. Or had they? She didn’t remember looking around too much. Maybe she’d missed something. But now in the light of day, the marks could not be ignored or passed over.

Gemma saw a few people standing around looking at the marks and walked closer to them, trying to hear what they were saying.

“My sister’s place was marked too. On the door in blood, just like this.” One man said.

“What do you think it means?” Another asked, echoing Gemma’s own thoughts.

“Are you sure it’s blood?” Someone chimed in.

“Well what else could it be? It looks like blood, and the message calls for blood.” The first man said.

“Like, human blood?” A fourth man asked.

“How should I know? Blood is blood. All I know is, it’s creepy as death, and bodes the same.” The first man said.

“How many of them are there?” One asked.

“Don’t know the count. Heard they’re all over the city, though. A customer of mine lives over in Okomo Estates and said she saw a few on her way into town.” That was all Gemma needed to hear. Someone was sending a threatening message and her family might be in danger. She had to go.

She made her way through the crowd that had gathered and made a swift pace over to Zintia. Her dad would be on his way home right now, but if she remembered correctly, Dev was at work. She wanted to pop in and make sure she was ok before she went home.

She made her way to The Scholar’s Demise and was met with a bar full of people. Gemma had never actually been here before, but everyone knew where it was. It took her only a few ticks to locate Dev weaving between patrons and clearing dished. As expected, she really pulled off the barmaid look. Gemma looked down at her own attire and sighed, pushing the two hoods off her head and frowning that nothing more could be done.

She entered the room that smelled of alcohol and smoke and squinted. She was not used to this kind of atmosphere. But it wasn’t too hard to weave her petite frame through the bustling room, tracking her way over to Dev, who was just about to offer a drink to-

“Madeira?” Gemma said aloud without thinking. “Hey!” Her day brightened on seeing the Keeper of The Dead, and she stuttered, afraid she had made things awkward.

“Sorry, I didn’t expect to see you here. I actually came to talk to Dev, but since you’re both here, are you ok?” She looked from one to the other.

“I saw all these creepy marks on a bunch of doors in the city, and someone said they were painted in blood. I’m heading home to see if my house was marked. What about you two?”
Last edited by Gemma Parker on April 1st, 2019, 11:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Madeira Craven on April 1st, 2019, 5:00 am

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At her knock, a Konti in an barmaid apron approached, cleaning rag in hand and a smile upon her face as she asked if she could get Madeira anything. Like the Spiritist, this woman was pale with long blonde hair and blue eyes, but the similarities stopped abruptly there. She was tall and healthy and curvy, with gentle ocean eyes and an exotic collection of pale blue scales across her forehead and the back of her webbed hands. As the only Konti employed at this bar she was catching more than just Madeira's attention.

"Worn out? Try exhausted", the Spiritist rolled her eyes. "I've been here all morning and I'm just hearing the same theories about this mark over and over again."

At that moment, another Konti burst onto the scene.

"Madeira? Hey!"

Gemma, dripping rainwater from her drenched poncho, had squeezed up to the bar. The bright eyed healer was wearing a familiar brown belted dress Madeira had only ever seen her in on shift in at the Catholicon. Gemma didn’t expect to find her here, she said, as she had actually come to talk to Dev. But, true to her nature, the healer was showing genuine concern for both of them as she looked from one to the other and asked if they were okay.

"Hi Gemma, I’m glad to see you. Dev?" Madeira glanced at the barmaid. It figured that two of only a handful of Konti in this city would know each other. Madeira extended a silvery gloved hand to the other woman and smiled kindly. "A friend of Gemma's is a good person in my books. I'm Madeira Craven, a spiritist for the Dusk Tower. It's a pleasure to meet you."

And wouldn't a barmaid make for a useful friend? Especially in a place as popular as this. Dev would be the first to hear all the city’s gossip and know who was spreading it to boot. Madeira smiled for her, even as her value as a potential ally was being tallied in her head. Yet as she turned back to Gemma her expression of welcome darkened perceptively, as talk turned inevitably towards the marks again.

"You've seen the signs, then? Both of you?" On the bar top she began unconsciously drawing the symbol again with the tip of her finger: mask, dagger, hands, eyes. "I have one. I found it on my door at dawn. My door. The sentient one, behind a moat full of teeth, haunted by the sleepless dead, and steps away from a paranoid canine Kelvic. That one”, she reiterated, and for a moment seemed to be talking specifically to Gemma. Which was just as well, for she’d sound crazy to anyone else.

“And my house couldn't even tell me who it was. They just appeared and... vanished." Her friendly composure was slipping as she spoke, and a sliver of hot anger was showing in the cracks. "The symbol looked like it was drawn in blood. Gods knows who’s, or what’s. I've been here all morning talking to everyone and nobody has any idea who did it or what it means. But this mark sounds an awful lot like a threat, doesn’t it."

Mask, daggers, hands, eyes. She traced away that repetitive pattern into the bar and felt herself slowly going mad. What was it about this symbol? Why was it eating away at her? She looked at her nearly empty whiskey glass and wished it were Overture; the grounding tea-like drug from Alvadas. Or any of the city's plethora of drugs, really. It was times like these where her stunted sense of patterns and blindness to assumption really shined through. She sighed and pushed the glass away.

Wait.

She looked back to the two Konti as if just realizing they were there. If she was determined to investigate this, then an extra set of eyes and completely intact sanity was exactly what she needed. She’d have no problem talking Gemma into coming along, as long as they checked on her home first. And she was confident enough in her persuasiveness to think she’d be able to get her friend to join too.

“Maybe you can help me figure this out.” Her body language changed as she squared off with the two Konti, looking only a ruler an a pair of spectacles away from going full Teacher Mode as she laid out the problem for them. “So, I have the mark, as do most involved with the Spinning Glimmers, Towers, Shinya, and a handful of people in between", she pinched the bridge of her nose and screwed her eyes shut as she thought. “But you two don't, and neither does the Twele, the Catholicon, or the library. This obviously isn't random, so, what separates them? What separates Dev and I? And why did this just happen to coincide with the anniversary of the Penrose incident? Please, help me figure this out."
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Postby Dev'Ania on April 3rd, 2019, 2:05 am


Dev'Ania chuckled at the woman's remarks. She understood what the blonde woman had meant by "hearing the same theories about this mark over and over again." She felt the same way. The same rumors and speculations circulated through the tavern. There was no new information on what was happening.

Out the corner of her eye, Dev'Ania spotted Gemma making her way through the crowd. She was soaked from the pouring rain outside that had since picked up and now could be heard on the roof. It was clear that the young Konti had not been in a tavern before.

"Hey, Gemma! I'm fine, just trying to make sense of all of this like everyone else." Dev'Ania was grateful for Gemma's concern. It had been quite a while since she had someone to worry about her.

Dev was surprised to know that Gemma knew the woman. Although, she guessed they met at the Catholicon where she worked. She returned the introduction cheerfully with a smile, shaking the woman's glove covered hand. "Yes. I'm Dev'Ania, but you can call me Dev for short if you would like. It is nice to meet you as well." There was one good thing out of this eventful day - Dev'Ania had made another friend. And she was a spiritualist, which Dev though was pretty interesting.

The blonde spiritualist had begun to trace the sign on the top of the wooden bar, catching the eyes of Dev'Ania. "Yeah, not on mine, thankfully, but on my way here, I saw the mark." A look of shock and slight horror appeared on her face as she listened to the woman speak of what seemed to be where she lived. A moat of teeth? The sleepless dead? A canine Kelvic? Was this woman okay? Maybe the mysteriousness of the mark was getting to her. Fright. That's what is wrong, she is just frightened. But how could her house speak to her? There were so many questions Dev wanted to ask the woman, but right now, this symbol seemed to be more important.

Madeira seemed to be withdrawn from the group as she spoke. All of Dev's attention was directed to Madeira. She processed all the information given as it was thrown out, one after the other. Madeira asked the two Konti women to help her investigate and solve this mystery.

"I would love to help! I just have to let my boss know before I leave. I'm sure he won't mind." Dev'Ania removed the ratty barmaid apron from around her waist and hung it up behind the bar. She stepped away from the bar and peeked her head into the kitchen where the cook, Roric was. "Hey, I am going to head out for a little while. I have some...personal matters to attend to if you don't mind, of course." Roric, busy cooking, allowed the Konti to leave. "Just come back tonight to make up for now," he said, his focus on preparing meals for customers.

Dev'Ania returned to the pair of women. "Okay, I am free for a couple of bells. Now let's review everything we know, or think we know." She took her notebook out of her bag that sat under the bar, along with the quill and ink. Dipping the quill into the ink, she wrote down each piece of information shared between the three women. For a couple of ticks, she pondered the sign. "How did they use so much blood? Something doesn't seem to add up. Think of how much blood someone would need to draw all those symbols. It can't be from a human. I think the city would notice if someone was killed for the use of their blood." Dev bit her lip, a questioning look on her face as she tried making sense of the sign. "Maybe we should start with this. What do you guys think?"
Last edited by Dev'Ania on May 28th, 2019, 7:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Marked

Postby Gemma Parker on April 5th, 2019, 1:00 pm

Gemma paled as she saw both Dev and Madeira look down at her poncho and the water that was now forming into a puddle at her feet. She looked behind her and saw a small water trail leading right up to her. She looked to Dev and winced.

“Oh, I’m glad you’re ok. Sorry. I didn’t think to take it off.” Her expression fell, then bounced back again. “I can totally clean it up! Do you have a mop?” Gemma had intended to ask Madeira about the twins, but the conversation quickly sped past pleasantries, swept up in the current of current affairs.

Gemma was clearly the least informed about this. Madeira and Dev had both been around this news for bells, and Gemma had only just heard about it. She only managed to sneak a few quick confirmations into the conversation as it rushed past her and she scrambled to keep up. She nodded that yes, she had seen the marks, and inhaled sharply when Madeira said she had one of the marks on her door. That made her worry even more about her father.

Madeira started to describe Infinity Manor where Gemma had helped her deliver her twins, and even having heard and seen everything Madeira described (other than something about a dog) it was still incredible to hear it talked about. It was easy to see how many of the staff at The Catholicon thought Madeira was on something, but Gemma was sure by now that at least most of the woman’s tales were not as tall as most would expect. She glanced over at Dev’s face and couldn’t quite stifle a giggle.

“It’s all true, trust me. But nobody’s been hurt, right? I didn’t even know about this until I left work, and they said it happened at night.” Gemma asked, having time for little more. She just nodded at the comment about the threat, agreeing completely.

Madeira said the person appeared and vanished quickly, and Gemma’s face scrunched up in incredulity. How could that be? It had to be magic, right? She didn’t know enough about magic to know how it could be done, but magic could do crazy things. She looked down at her gloved right hand and rubbed the spot where her gnosis mark was. Could it have been a Marked individual from another god or goddess? She didn’t know what other marks did, but compared to her own abilities, something like this seemed like too much for a single mark. But marks weren’t very common on their own, let alone someone having more than one.

Madeira was getting frustrated, Gemma could tell. She wanted to reach out her arm and rub the woman’s back to soothe her, but she didn’t think that would be appreciated. Maybe she was wrong, but she did not want to risk feeling foolish in front of a room full of people. Instead, she jumped at the chance to help investigate.

“Sure, I can help!” Gemma offered.

Dev got out her notebook and Madeira started sharing what she knew. Gemma raised her eyebrows. She had learned all this just this morning? Madeira, the Towers, the Shinya, and the Spinning Glimmers. That was so random.

“Do we know when all this happened exactly? Madeira, did your house note the time?” She asked, leaning against the bar. “The way I see it, there are three option for how this happened. Magic, gnosis, and some kind of high skill. I suppose some kind of magical item could do it, too, but that’s basically magic. Dev, can you divine something about the past of these marks?” She asked, gesturing to the woman’s mark with her head.

“If no one has been injured I’m sure my dad is fine, but I’d still like to check on him. Can we make our way there while we figure this out? If not that’s fine!” She waved her hands to dissolve any kind of misunderstanding. “I can go and come right back,” she said quickly. “I’d be back in less than a bell.”

OOC :
Sorry for the awkward pacing. I guess I'm not used to social threads with more than two people xD If you guys have feedback about how to better structure my posts please let me know.
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Marked

Postby Madeira Craven on April 8th, 2019, 7:51 pm

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Both Dev'ania and Gemma were eager to investigate. Even under the circumstances Madeira couldn't help but smile at the eagerness. If she didn't know better she would suspect earnestness was a racial trait of all Konti.

Dev spoke quickly with the bar owner and returned with a notebook, proceeding to organize everything that had been said inside, and adding some of her own thoughts. Gemma too worked though the options on how this happened with a kind of deductive problem solving you only really see in healers and doctors. Both were so on top of things that Madeira felt both vindicated at their usefulness and even more worried about her rustiness. When Dev questioned where the blood came from Madeira had to pause.

"I never thought about it. I have many animals and people living on my property, but nobody was hurt. I can't imagine were they got so much blood."

Gemma, however, was questioning not the what, but the how. She listed the most reasonable options on how this happened, and indicated towards Dev's shoulder and asked if she could divine anything about these marks. Madeira's interest was perked at the insinuation. Was she one of those Konti marked by Avalis?

"I was woken by the house immediately once it had figured out what happened", Madeira answered Gemma's previous question. "It was just before dawn, which incidentally is exactly what half this bar is saying."

As the Konti listed through the possibilities for how everyone was marked, undetected, in one night, Madeira considered each in turn before adding her two cents.

"My house is a very powerful magical object, skill isn't enough to fool it. Gnosis could, and would be powerful enough to do something on this scale, but if they used a gods power to do it that would have to make this religiously motivated, wouldn't it?" Mask, hands, dagger, eyes, she traced. "None of the temples were affected, and though all three of us are favoured, Dev wasn't marked and I was." She pulled off her right hand glove to prove herself. Underneath her skin was the ugly, molted white and red of a severe burn scar, and in the palm she showed to Dev was the black sickle of Dira. Madeira shook her head, sliding the silk and rings back onto her fingers. "But magic..."

Magic could do it. Magic items, personal magic, world magic, wild dijed, there would be all kinds of ways it could be used to do this. Too bad tensions between the city's magic users were so tense these days. This was the anniversary of the Penrose incident that started this inflammatory situation between them, so the timing couldn't be worse, but if the city's many powerful mages could all put their heads together surely they could...

Madeira stopped her tracing, eyes widening as something blindingly obvious finally clicked into place in her head.

"Gemma, that's it!" Madeira slapped the dripping Konti's shoulder in victory "What do all those organizations have in common? Magic! The Spinning Glimmers are full of reimancers, the Shinya are projectionists, the Towers and Rothsam and Elana, they're all mages! That's who's been targeted! Don't we think that this being a season to the day that Penrose overgave is a little too coincidental?"

But the sudden high of having figured out the connection died quickly. Determining who was being targeted did not give them the why. They were targeting mages, sure, but to what end? It looked like every mage was marked, regardless of where they stood on the political issue of the city's magic users.

Damnit, this was all so twisted.

"I'm sure you're family is okay, Gem. They're not magic user are they? If we'd better check up on the mages we know first." She looked to Dev as she slid off the barstool and onto her feet. "How about you, is there someone you want to check on? We can make sure they're fine (thankfully we have a healer with us) and investigate what's on their door in one fell swoop. Maybe you can divine something about it that the two of us cant see."

Beckoning the two Konti with her, Madeira led the way out of the bar, squeezing between shoulders and elbows in a dress much too wide for such a delicate dance. She simply, and very arrogantly, assumed she would be followed as she led this charge. The fire was back in her eyes as the Spiritist relished the chance to actually do something about this mystery, rather than simply talk about it.

She grabbed her cloak from a stand by the door, an elaborate and very obviously magical garment made of golden feathers that floated as though weightless. Pushing her way out the door, a rush of cool spring air wafted inside, cutting through the smell of ale and the density of people. Outside the sky was overcast and threatening rain.

Not knowing where exactly they were going, and being unable to find the place even if she did, Madeira waited for the girls to catch up.

"Where to?"
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Marked

Postby Dev'Ania on April 15th, 2019, 3:57 am


It was set. All three of the woman would be investigating this strange occurrence today. Dev'Ania was actually quite excited to be investigating with the other women. It wasn't often she would go out with a group of other women. Not to mention, she could quench her curiosity, too. No one in the tavern had any new information, so they were left to search for information themselves.

Dev'Ania stood across from the two women, leaning over the bar and taking notes as the women fed her the information they had. Gamma had pointed out her gnosis mark. She was a bit taken back by the suggestion, as she had never really used her gnosis. It was an amazing divine gift, given to her at birth by Avalis, but there was never a chance for her to use it. Perhaps, now was the chance she had been waiting for.

Dev looked down at her right shoulder where the mark of Divination was located. She gave a slight nod of her head, an uncertain expression on her face. "Um, I might be able to divine something. I haven't exactly used it that much, but I can certainly try!"

As Madeira continued to spit out information, Dev wrote them down into her notebook. SHe organized each piece of info into a web, with each piece circled and connected to another with a line. In the center circle, she wrote 'How each door was marked.' connected to the circle were others with each way Gemma had said.

Madeira showed her burned hand containing her gnosis mark. Dev was wanted to know more about why her hand was so burned and how it was burned, but she kept her curiosity to herself. Now, they were trying to figure out who was targeted. Maybe if they knew exactly who was targeted and how they were connected, they could be led to more information. Finally, it was concluded that mages were being targeted. This conclusion, however, gave no further info as to why they were targeted. The women were left with no useful lead, again.

The tavern began to become surprisingly less busy. A time like this, Dev'Ania thought it would be packed all day. Maybe people were just taking a break from the gossip. Dev agreed that Gemma's parents would be fine. In the time that she had known them, she knew that they were not mages. "Yeah, I'm am sure your parents are fine. I, however, do have someone we should talk to. She isn't a mage, to my knowledge, but she tends to know a lot about the things that go on in this city."

Dev put away her notebook, ink, and quill. She put on her cloak and followed the nicely-dressed woman out the door of the tavern. "To the park. We are going to pay a visit to the Lonely Shack - the home of my mentor and friend, The Alheas Crone. I will lead the way." Dev'Ania moved forward ahead of Madeira and started in the direction of Alheas Park.
OOC :
Sorry, again, for the late response! I have been on a trip and away from my laptop. Hope this is a good enough response. I can make alters if needed!
Last edited by Dev'Ania on May 28th, 2019, 7:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Marked

Postby Madeira Craven on April 16th, 2019, 2:09 am

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OOC :
Gem is going to be busy for a while, so she gave us the go ahead to post without her until she can come back. It's just you and me for now, Dev!


Lonely Shack? Alheas Crone? Madeira watched Dev'ania pass in complete bafflement. This person she spoke of sounded like some sort of swamp witch. How does this pretty little barmaid, this sweet, eager Konti, become the student and friend of some backwoods crone in a lonely shack? There must be much more to Dev'ania than she first thought.

She was about to ask who this Crone was, and how was it that she tended to know a lot about the things that go on in this city, when Gem tapped her on the shoulder. It seemed the gung-ho attitude and thin reasoning of Madeira and Dev'ania did not dissuade her worries about her parents. She wanted to go home and check on her family, and meet up with the two of them later. The Spiritist agreed, though she was loathed to leave healing hands and a second pair of eyes behind. She let her know where they would be, should she try and catch up, and said a swift goodbye before lifting her skirts above her ankles to jog back to Dev'ania.

The two passed a handful of marks as they walked the cobble streets to Alheas Park. Talk of the phenomenon was not confined to the tavern, it seemed. It was on the lips of everyone they passed. Some spoke fervently, some sardonically, some fearfully and some lightly, but it was all pointed in one direction. What was this? What did it mean?

Madeira recognized where Dev was leading her only after she could see the familiar gated entrance. While no great nature lover by any stretch of the imagination, the park was only a few blocks from her home and thus had become a habitual haunt for the Spiritist when she needed to get away from her haunted manor or stretch her pregnancy-swollen legs. She liked to think she knew every inch of this park by now, yet she had never seen a shack therein. Lonely or otherwise.

"Are you sure your friend is in here? Does her shack move?" This was nowhere near out of the realm of possibilities. She could say the shack tunnels into the ground like a mole and the Avalad wouldn't bat an eye.

It was much quieter in the park. The early hours of the waking period and the excitement out in the city meant the people prowling the public park were few and far between. In the hushed atmosphere Madeira let her mind wander.

"You're not from Lhavit, are you, Dev'ania? No, you don't have the right accent. I'd say you were raised in Riverfall, but its not quite right for that city either." she shook her head and smiled. "Whatever the case may be, you have an outsiders perspective of this city. Just like me. I was born and raised in Alvadas, and lived very briefly in Riverfall. But neither city could hold a candle to what magic is in Lhavit. Its tolerated in Riverfall, sure, but its loathed where I come from. I don't think the people here understand how strange their view of magic is compared to the rest of the world."

Alvadas itself had a very complicated view of the arcane. Using it in public was illegal, and you were sure to be punished in cruelly clever ways by the Speakers if you were caught. They say its because magic is dangerous, but a surprising number of people did actually use magic, they just did so secretly. The firedancers often knew reimancy, the strongmen often knew flux, and if the childhood stories were to be believed the morgue was run by maledictors. It was all to aid the illusion that Ionu cherished. The explainable was abhorrent. They wanted these feats to be served with mystery and dramatic flare. It was as opposite to Lhavit as one could be. She wondered what this mysterious vigilante would think of her home city and its views of the arcane.

Daydreaming as she was, and following unquestioningly after Dev'ania, Madeira didn't notice the shack until they were almost upon it.

It seemed to grow from the very trees around it. Tuck away in the shadow of the forest growth, lit by the phosphorescent glow of jars full of prismflies, the shack was mysterious and ancient. She would swear she had been this way before, but she had never before seen this shack. A worn and nearly illegible sign read fortuneteller, above a door with a very familiar mark.

"Your crone is a witch after all", Madeira pointed to the bloody symbol slathered across her door. A dagger held with praying hands, under a mask with inverted triangles for eyes... "Maybe this is your chance to divine more about it before we say hello to your... friend. Wait, does this mean your her fortunetelling student?" Yet another piece of the Dev'ania puzzle clicked together.

Maybe it was because her thoughts were so fresh from her Alvadas tangent that she was suddenly much more interested in the mark itself than she was before. When it was on her door all she felt was shock and rage. But seeing it again, calmer, with the knowledge that it was targeting mages...

Praying hands, that was religious. A cult? A mask was deception, trickery. And the eyes... Inverted triangles. Inverted.

Wait, did that mean...

Hiking up her skirt Madeira bounded up the steps to the porch until she was face to face with that accursed symbol. It was familiar. She knew she recognized it. Her fear dried up and blew away with the wind, but the wariness remained. She was smiling when she turned to Dev'ania.

"There is a cult, in Alvadas. They're a theater troupe calling themselves the Inverted. They worship Ionu, the deity of illusion and trickery and their symbol is a blue inverted triangle." She traced the symbols eyes. "They wouldn't like magic, because Alvadas doesn't like magic. Could it be? But no. They don't travel this far. I... I must be mistaken."

What wouldn't she give to see them again though?

It would not be her first encounter with the Inverted, if it even was them. She and a band of merry misfits once tracked them down for a performance during the chaotic Illusion Festival two years ago. To reward her they had given her a gift, she remembered. An egg that turned into a-

"Bird!" she shouted in epiphany. "Dev'ania! I have... I have this bird, called Bird, it looks like a pigeon but its not. It can find the Inverted, wherever they are. Once we've talked to your Crone, and find all we need to find here, we must go to my house. If I'm right... if it is the Inverted... we'll can find them."

Shaking herself out of her heartache homesickness, she backed away from the crudely drawn mark. She didn't want to look too closely, for it still glistened bloodily and wetly. She let Dev in for her inspection. She didn't know how her gnosis worked, and she was truly eager to see what the Konti could deduce.
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Marked

Postby Dev'Ania on April 21st, 2019, 4:21 am


Dev'Ania marched forward on the path to the Lonely Shack. Looking behind her, she saw as Gemma turned to go the other way. Madeira caught up to Dev. "I'm assuming Gemma went to see if her dad was okay," Dev asked Madeira as she walked next to her.

It would have been nice to have the healing Konti by their side, but Dev'ANia understood why she had to go. Gemma was protective and always worried about the people she loved. Even people she didn't know. If she felt her family could be in danger in the slightest, Gemma would be by their side in a heartbeat.

As the pair of women entered Alheas Park, Dev remembered the feeling of peace she would feel visiting Cala every day. She breathed in the scent of the surrounding flora, feeling the fresh air enter her lungs.

"She is definitely here. And as a matter of fact, her shack does move. It is never in the same place twice. The Crone only allows certain people to find it. People who she trusts and people who need her services. It sounds odd, but it is true." Dev shot a smirk at the woman beside her.

Madeira began to talk about Dev's accent and where she must be from. "No, I'm not from Lhavit. I have only been here since last fall. I am, actually, from Riverfall. I lived there with my mother after my father died. Before then, we lived in Mura, where my mother is from. That is probably why my accent isn't exactly like a Riverfall accent."

It was nice for Dev to finally meet someone who hadn't lived in this city their whole life. Sometimes, the people in this city didn't understand how different Lhavit is from her home-cities, Riverfall and Lhavit. "I agree. The magic here is so much different from the other cities I have lived in. Anyway, maybe you should tell me more about Alvadas someday. I have never heard of that city."

It didn't take long for the pair to find the shack. At first sight of the shack, it felt as if Dev's stomach dropped. On the door of the ragged shack was the same symbol seen around town. "Bu-...but she is just an old fortune-teller. I mean, she could divine things and see into the future, but that isn't really magic," she looked at Madeira. "Right?"

The Inverted? A bird named Bird? "Definitely...we should definitely see if they are behind this." Dev'Ania was worried. She wanted to know if Cala was okay. Surely, she would have heard the women outside. Why hasn't she come out to greet them yet? How did she let the vigilante mark her door? Why did she let them? Maybe she had no choice. Dev knew Cala always had a specific reason for everything.

Dev'Ania stepped onto the porch and slowly approached the marked door. "I suppose I could try to divine something." Dev'Ania closed her eyes and let out a deep breath. She placed her hand lightly on the door. Keeping her eyes shut, she concentrated completely on the image of the door in her mind. Suddenly, after a couple of ticks, she was able to tap into the Chavena. It was as if she had left her body, and traveled to a different plane of existence. The divinist looked into a chavi that appeared to her, and then her mind returned back to reality.

Her eyes opened and she breathed deeply. "Wow. That seemed so... magical." Dev'Ania paused before looking at Madeira and taking out her notebook in a hurry. Quickly, she began to write down what she saw. "I saw them marking the door! They were wearing a dark cloak and had a hood on. I could see their face though." Dev'Ania finished writing down what she saw - a person in a dark, hooded cloak. She was a bit upset she couldn't see anything else.

Dev'Ania took a deep breath but paused before releasing it. A look of curiosity appeared on her face and her eyes darted between the mark and Madeira. She moved closer to the mark, sniffing it. "Uh, Madeira. I think I have something else though... I don't think this is blood after all. It doesn't smell like any blood I have smelled before. You should take a sniff for yourself."

Dev stepped back from the door to allow Madeira to smell the substance.
Last edited by Dev'Ania on May 28th, 2019, 7:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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