Old December 2, 2011, 01:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
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[Har'oloth] [Second Plane] The Black Citadel

When Faust Kitrye'veresi became High Lord of Har'oloth, Tithoria the Fallen Oread told him he'd need a defendable seat of power from where he could extend his new authority and house his army. She took him alone to the ruins of a great fortress which once housed a school of arcana run by lightborns mages who'd long since died when it was sacked and abandoned. Once it was a many-spired behemoth of a building, defended with towering buttresses and high ramparts. Now several towers had collapsed, scars on the walls told of past sieges, but though diminished it still looked magnificent and nigh impregnable. Most of it's exterior walls were covered in metal plates, interlocking panels of both black and white, with cunningly placed murder holes between them. Since it's lightborn residents were destroyed the fortress had been disused and left to crumble into decay. The Fallen Oread stood before this ruin and used her powers to mould the ruinous debris, gathering the stone and fusing it back within the fortress. She called yet more rock from the surrounding caverns to make it stronger, gathering so much natural stone to thrust in to reinforce the fortress, which by the end it almost resembled a small, jagged mountain. It's rugged slopes were spiked with it's many turrets, criss-crossed by the remnants of the original stairs and alcoves. Wide balconies and open porticoes were later carved out of the rock, looking out in all directions. When she had finished manipulating the caverns stone, the Oread then called on strange plants to explode from small burrowing roots into an abundance, thorny vines flowering with luminescent flowers that crawled up rapidly and took hold over the fortress. Wrapping around everything from the newly formed stone to the highest turrets, it's glowing flowers giving it a soft blue aura that could be seen shining in the dark from far beyond. "Behold" Tithoria had said to High Lord Faust when it was done "The Black Citadel awaits you"

Standing tall, mightily proud, the Black Citadel was perched atop a narrow ledge overlooking the vast blackness of the Planar Rift on one side and the town it protected, Har'oloth, on the other. It's walls were guarded by keen-eyed crossbowmen, tasked with watching the black abyss beneath them with ceaseless vigilance. Only by climbing up that rift could Hon'elgg or Herozzal rise up to threaten Har'oloth. Such a climb would be dangerous alone for the slippery, steep passages narrowly winding their way up the ledges and ravines, and if those on the walls could not pick off those ascending, then Faust's army, the Dread Knights of Har'oloth, would be alerted to intercept them. The tallest tower was made completely of alabaster, a needle-like spire that stood high above the other dwellings of Har'oloth below. Due its gleaming visage it was was called the Moonspire and was covered in bas relief carvings that told of the great deeds and legends in Har'oloth's long history. The spire glows softly with radiant light, stark in contrast to the obsidian rock that clustered upon the Black Citadel. This tower is home to the Lady Seneschal, Eilantha Silvermantle, the most noble Esh'lahier in the city, and second in command only to the High Lord himself.

Four elven Dread Knights stood by the Black Citadel's large pentagonal gate, dressed in dark chain mail with faces covered by full-visored black Vysstichi steel helmets. They rested their shields against the wall beside them and each kept a hand on their sword hilt. They would allow non-threatening visitors to enter a paved courtyard filled with statues, elaborately tiered fountains and pedestals that held aloft braziers lining the way to the fortesses' towering front doors.The main foyer beyond was cavernous, it's ceiling covered by the moulded obsidian which crept down the walls above woven tapestries. Numerous door-lined passages and corridors led off from the foyer. Most of the adjoining rooms had now been restored since the High Lord took up residence, the high-ceilings, compromised walls and collapsed pillars were either now replaced or reinforced. Some walls had fallen away or broken through, and it was into these openings that the rough rock moulded by the Oread closed over to seal. Guards were nearly everywhere one could turn in the Black Citadel. These Dread Knights of Har'oloth patrolled the fortress or schooled themselves in new weaponry at one the numerous training halls. Rooms other than the austere military quarters were adorned with rich tapestries, furniture and carpets that had been saved or stolen from the noble Houses before their destruction. A wide staircase led from the main foyer up through many flights to the higher floors where the Dread Knight commanders lodged.

At the end of those stairs was a long black room of polished obsidian, it's vaulted roof was supported by white marble colonnades and tall golden statues of beautiful Elves filled the gaps between the columns. Each figure held a burning torch and stood flanking mosaic path that ran down the middle of the floor to a double door on the other side. Ten soldiers stood barring further passage, hand crossbows in their ready hands, swords in their belts and shields, faces masked by iron helms. They stopped any visitor unless otherwise instructed by the High Lord of Har'oloth and any who resisted them were to be killed on sight after a single. One stepped forward out of the line, a commanding woman's voice spoke from beneath the helm "What business have you with the High Lord Kitrye'veresi?"
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Old December 10, 2011, 07:47 AM   #2 (permalink)
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A small detachment of men clad in steel, wearing white tunics with a black scorpion embroided upon the white cloth, arrived at the Black Citadel's main gates. Amongst the detachment of only five men, there was one woman wearing a black tunic with a silver scorpion embroided on the cloth, most likely showing a higher rank amongst the men.

After hearing the rather brutish question from the guards, the woman made a slight bow, while reaching for a small black leather cylinder at her waist. While handing over the cylinder, she simply spoke to answer their question, while maintaining her other hand, which did not held the leather cylinder, tightly at the stilletto at her waist.

"We are here on order of Sir Creed Nardaquilli," She said softly. "He has asked us to bring this letter to his highness, the High Lord of Har'oloth."

Handing over the cylinder, she also ordered one of the men to hand over a sealed wooden casket to the guards, before she and the other four men turned around again and moving away from the Citadel, back to the upper levels of Vortex.

Secrets :

 
To his revered Highness,
High Lord of Har'oloth,
The honourable Faust Kitrye'veresi,


I hope this writing finds you in both good health and spirits as well as in good tidings.

Your highness, I Creed Nardaquilli, am the humble writer of this letter towards you, in which I seek your most glorious and most graceful forgiveness for my discrepancies towards your kin in the recent past.

I have understood your arguments, as they were both effective and lifechanging. In my time of solitude and reconciliation with myself, I have deemed it necessary to finally set aside whatever quarrel we had, to unite both our minds and assets to create a better future for both our kin.

I have heard of the pain and suffering that has befallen you, when you were forced to march against your own brethren, yet at the same time I applaud you, for being Har'oloth's savior yet again and creating a beacon of light and hope for those who have suffered the wrath of those that were seeking your and your brethren's destruction.

Your most honourable highness, though I know it is a troublesome request, I would kindly ask you for a favor; the favor of once again honouring me with your graceful presence. I do leave the time and place to be decided by your own schedule, as I do not belief a meeting between us should take presendence over the people that you lead at this time.

I will be waiting a reply with trepidation,

Most humble greetings,

Creed Volrath Nardaquilli
 

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Old December 16, 2011, 08:44 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Timestamp: Immanis, Winter, Era XVIII Post-Fractum
In the Age of Heroes

Sometimes, when the world grew dark and life turned drastic, even elfs could change.

In a look, the dozen Esh’lahier appeared at once demure and arrogant, sinking unseen into the background as much as they stood out in the crowd. At one look they would have easily been mistaken for part of the pale elf contingent that had historically made Har’oloth their home. They had all the confidence, after all, to walk in the underground corridors as if they belonged here.

Something, though, wasn’t quite right. Their clothing was a little more ornate, with shimmering threads that had been embroidered into intricate patterns of leaves and vines around the hems of their robes. Their hairstyles, too, were left long and straight, with single silver pins used to pull back the top half. They bore no visible weapons, though the bulge on the hip underneath the fabric betrayed that a few refused to walk the dark city’s streets defenseless. And for some, the glint in their eye betrayed that they didn’t need a weapon to pose a threat.

They were a mixture of male and female, chattering in low tones in a dialect of Esh’lahieri that was far sharper, faster, and more articulate than that typically heard spoken by emigrants to lands outside their independent kingdom in Lauryl. Eyes the color of silver matched with those of pale blue, flashing about the streets despite their heavy conversation in an ever-wary attitude. They may have not been nervous, per se, but they were most certainly cautious—and from the quick and instinctive way all continued to cast surveying looks over their shoulders every other pace, it was clear that it was a habit more anciently ingrained in them far beyond the mere oddity of their presence in a foreign city would have caused.

Those same careful glances were sent in the direction of the Black Citadel, hiding surreptitiously behind casual conversation and expressions of deep thought. Ancient wars and wounds of legend had long separated the two branches of K’Terakian descendants and time, it seemed, had done nothing but emphasized the divide that had cut between them. Har’oloth, it seemed, was more inclined to wear its battle vestments on the outside with the intentions to present a formidable enough exterior to ward off any potential threat. Its cousin Ethgan’tor was far more subtle about these things, keeping its perennial conflict between its noble houses in the silence of an assassin’s blade or a deal made in the back rooms behind closed doors.

Such forthrightness, though, had its uses—and perhaps Ethgan’tor would have done well to have learned such a lesson. For too long had they hidden from the world and shunned its very attachments. Now, however, that would change. Ethgan’tor had come to the outer world and wanted help. Their more conservative Esh’lahier brethren would have murdered this contingent in their sleep had they known of their intentions, but such an opportunity was never granted. After all, fortune favored those that survived.

The conversation died out as the small group of elfs approach the citadel. A few let their hands fall down to their sides, resting gently over the places where blades rested just inside. Others allowed their eyes to linger over the armored guards at the front and those positioned higher, all staring down with their dark threats written clearly on their garb and stern posture. They were in the home of their ancestral enemy now and far out of their element—but they were Esh’lahier, and they would not be caught off guard.

A male, appearing to still be in the cusp of young adulthood even for the timeless style of his people, returned the female knight’s imperious question with a haughty look of his own. Grey eyes grew immovable in the steady way they stared back, making it clear that being countermanded was far from a usual occurrence to him. His chin never even slightly dipped; his posture never even remotely bent. If there was greeting to be granted these knights, it would solely come from the tone of his words rather than any expression or gesture he granted. MoltMuch,” he slipped into Esh’lahieri for the reply.

The corner of his lips twitched as if he very suddenly realized the misuse of his native tongue. The hems of his long-sleeved, shapeless silver robe hummed and rustled as he stepped forward again. “We are of House Areth’ya, Moon of Ethgan’tor, and I, Elion, second son of Sven'amos, under the grace of the goddess.” The Common was lilting and stilted in its formation, but still mostly understandable. Now, finally, the Esh’lahier’s head tilted slightly at an angle to clarify his position of authority over the rest of his entourage at his self-given introduction. “We wish to discuss with your lord the possibility of change and of alliance, considering the victories recently won by your people.”

The female Esh’lahier nearest to his elbow blinked repeatedly and shuffled her weight on her feet.

“Your high lord, I mean,” Elion added back quickly, waving a dismissing hand at his mistake.
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Old December 22, 2011, 12:07 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Another stood silent in the contingent, flanking his cousin, Elion Areth'ya on one side and garbed in the same colored robes that garnished the lithe esh'lahien frame. He glided seamlessly with the rest, the twin elvish long knives swaying on either side of his hips as he moved, taking in the sights, the sights, and the death and blood in the air that promised of an early spring.

The concepts of solidarity amused him, and so to belong to a group as they were now was an entirely humorous concept. Perhaps because he would surrender to the primordial instincts that made them dark elves, he understood that each of them bore different madness that were chained by dissimilar aspirations and motivations. Some, like his, were far more taboo than others, but they were esh'lahier, and so were able to rein in those desires to put on a common façade for the public and prying eyes.

It wasn't quite as simple as loyalty, no. It was something far more rooted in their tribal psyche. Esh'lahiers were not creatures capable of true allegiance, their creation myth dictated such traits as such -- to describe it as a certain fear and paranoia would perhaps be more appropriate; that they were bound in fellowship, because the alternative would be them being cast out, hated and loathed by everyone else in this world.

It had been Ancarri's first time out of Ethgan'tor, though his excitement was ever held in reserve, studying the hideous architecture with a macabre fascination. His wine-colored eyes, an anomaly even among his people, was rather obvious in a sea of grays and blues. Witnessing their dark skinned cousins in such numbers brought a sense of fear mixed with quiet curiosity, and while the scholar in him yearned to document this to every single detail, the darker creature in him sought only to indulge and flood his senses to the point of saturation, yet maintaining that composed control over his facial features so that he appeared slightly bored and vaguely disinterested.

It was the prospect of danger surprised him like the way a bucket of icy cold water would feel on naked skin, the stretch of the strings on crossbows sparking a deeper color in his eyes, almost turning them into a darker and more lurid gold tone. His muscles tensed but he did not twitch, deferring to his cousin, their leader, for instructions, even though the thought of Elion wielding any sort of authority brought a degree of bemusement forth that was hard to contain.

Oh, Ancarri played the part well enough, even though his mind thought differently. For now, he would be the servile, faithful companion to his cousin... for now.

At the words of Elion, a sharp smile fleeted up his features, as if the anticipation had just broke free of the esh'lahien constraints and seeped through the otherwise impassive mask of his face, his chin ever so inclined towards the direction of the female knight, a quietly sardonic expression seemed set on his face forever. A vague tremble on his pale lips, belaying just how the environ, with all their tones, death and faraway screams, seemed to resonate within him.

He had glanced around his group before, wondering just how many of them felt that same way, the way Vortex strummed at their core and souls, refusing to let go?

If violence broke free here, the pleasure will be brief and sated, but then the inconvenience considerable. His uncle sought to consolidate allies for his own machinations, and while Ancarri held very little loyalty, if any esh'lahier claiming such a quality would be the greatest hypocrisy at all, the experience garnered from his brief time in Vortex had been delicious, and to end so prematurely would be quite a disappointment indeed.

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Old January 18, 2012, 01:32 AM   #5 (permalink)
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A dozen crossbows peeking through murder holes and overhead crenels trained upon the unannounced entourage. Although they wore the skin color of a people native to the subterranean realm of Har’oloth, their trappings betrayed them as members of a foreign enclave. With efficiency that bespoke a kingdom edgy from recent hostilities, the four armored soldiers retrieved their shields and engaged the oncoming Esh’lahier. Closed helms the color of midnight sufficiently concealed their visages save four pairs of red eyes that blazed intensely as they settled upon the gray-skinned contingent.

Notwithstanding the marriage of Vysstichi and Esh’lahier nations in the wake of Varelinen Vhid D’issan’s demise, a history of ingrained racism was not easily forgotten. But for the notable size of the Ethgan’torian envoy, the guardsmen might have responded more innocuously, but given the prospective dangers posed by both intolerant people’s motherlands, not a single soldier had his or her hand removed from the long swords strapped to their sides. Both the High Lord and the Lady Seneschal had warned of probable backlash coming from Hon’elgg and Herozzal in the near time future. Unfortunately, as no one had envisioned a visit from Ethgan’tor, the Dread Knights treated the twelve Esh’lahier with comparable suspicion.

Stepping forward, the tallest of the four guards removed her helm, shaking free a mane of snowy hair that contrasted exquisitely with her ink-colored skin. Her long tresses cascaded down her shoulders, weaving between the glistening spikes on her pauldrons like white streams. Even with the scar that ran down her right cheek, she would have riveted many a stare in any elven community, but then again, the way in which her jaw muscles tensed when she locked eyes with the Esh’lahier would have repelled, perhaps even terrified, equally as many. “Bneir'pak mina pholor ussta quarth,” the woman calmly replied in response to the man’s Esh’lahieri as she tucked her helmet securely beneath her arm and against her side.

It was not until the self-styled son of Sven’amos introduced himself and his entourage’s purpose in coming that the guardswoman suddenly lift a mailed hand, which immediately diffused the number of crossbows fixed upon the pale elves and provided some interpretation of her earlier words. She did not speak immediately, instead opting to quietly study the faces of those flanking Elion and those behind him. “Lar l' Jallil d'lil Drathir lu' l' Obok Senger a h'uena. Udossta kaovehen ph' ghil,” the woman finally said, continuing to rely on the Vysstichi dialect. Upon her command, one of the soldiers behind her turned hurriedly and made haste through the citadel’s upraised portcullis.

You have traveled a long way, Elion of House Areth’ya,” the guard said, her heavy accent making it laborious to understand her Charismean. Her leveled tone, however, lacked the cold indifference that had accompanied her earlier words. If she was the least bit self-conscious of her intonation, though, she did not show it. Her eyes fell once again to the Esh’lahier contingent, many of whom had their hands stationed nervously near their weapons. “The High Lord and the Lady Seneschal will be pleased to see you,” she continued in her broken Charismean.

You may take your belongings with you if you choose, but any mounts must be left outside,” she said, turning towards the citadel’s imposing entrance and waiting for them just before its threshold. “Follow me.
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Old January 27, 2012, 02:22 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Long didn’t even begin to describe it.

Golden-hued eyes stared down the female knight with all the imperiousness he could muster, not for a second betraying the reality of circulating thoughts inside. They were in the heart of the enemy now, that dark clutch of their ancestral brothers-turned-nemesis in the garb of a beggar, plaintively asking for help like a pathetic little child looking for a scrap of food. It irked every fiber of his being, every shred of his soul, to stand here now. He was a prince of Areth’ya, of the noblest lineage in all of Ethgan’tor and one of the mighty of the Esh’lahier nation…

…and yet his father had commanded, and so he had come.

Out of sheer instinct Elion glanced unwittingly over his shoulder in Ancarri’s direction, finding some small measure of solace in the knowledge that his cousin was, as ever he had been, standing firmly in his shadow. In truth, Elion hadn’t much felt peace or comfort in Ethgan’tor, either, so the circumstantial change to the dark caverns of Har’oloth, infested as they were with Vysstichi and all manner of other creatures, hadn’t the same degree of unsettling effect it had on many of his companions. Perhaps that was why the Old Wolf had sent him in the place of his far more confident and strong-willed sister, or perhaps…

…no, there were other times for musing. Such thoughts were better left for a moment most clearly not now. The Vysstichi words grated the pale elf’s ears like fingernails digging into glass, hard and screeching from the pits of hundreds of generations that had separated the cousin elfin nations. Still, though, he did not move. The grimace on his face might have been impossible to stop, but Elion and his small cadre of Esh’lahier did not move—not once, not even his guards to shift to the comfort of their weighted weapons. Still, the growing tautness in their posture and the stretching of their frowns displayed enough of their disapproval that little more remained unsaid.

It was rather ironic that communication between the strands of elfs could only be done in the barbaric Common tongue of a human-led nation, but Elion had little chance to muse more deeply on that fact. The woman who had taken his slight correction upon herself before slipped up in the crowd, standing just on her lord’s right. “And we are honored,” she spoke into the gap that her master had so discourteously left. As soon as the lilting Common was given voice, the female Esh’lahier had melted back into the surrounding throng to become yet again just one white face among many, with their young prince nestled in their very center.

The interruption served to at least elicit a curt nod from Elion and, at least for now, some sort of action. A pair of his guard had, at the Vysstichi knight’s invitation, taken the lead, casting wary eyes on the guards posted strategically about the Citadel while never once removing their hands from the sides of their hips. For now, a respectful exchange had been forged. For now, there would be just talk and conversation. For now, whatever hurts and wars had broken their nations for so many thousands of eras would be conveniently slipped underneath the table and forgotten for the moment as battle was relegated to solely image.

For now.

Another of his robed entourage, this one speaking female with an elegant knotted hairstyle and a heavy leather-bound tome in her hand, had taken the next position in line. Elion stood looking backward over his shoulder with hastily roving eyes. “Cousin,” he called in their native Esh’lahieri, seeking out the comfort of Ancarri’s far darker orbs, “accompany me.”

At the front, the woman spoke to the guard softly. “Your High Lord and the Lady Seneschal have, then, the gratitude of House Areth’ya, ever undying.” The elf’s Ethgan’torian accent was present too, though far lighter than her master’s previous intonation, and most of the words died an inaudible death underneath the clamor of the echoing footsteps. Her eyes never once left the elegant hallways of the Citadel though, giving no evidence to those walking behind that she was conversing at all.
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Old February 15, 2012, 03:55 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Muscles tensed underneath Ancarri's robes, but they did not flinch. THe esh'lahier, after all, prided themselves in their restrain over their emotions, unlike their dark skinned cousins that succumbed so easily and eternally to the taint. The passiveness could, when viewed by an outsider, kept on as an insult of the greatest order, a clear line of boundary and superiority that was unspoken.

Yet they were not here to engage in hostilities, that much was obvious. Elion had been sent as a petitioner, and they were here to negotiate. Diplomacy had always fascinated the warped mind of Ancarri to a certain extent, and of course he was rather certain that the manner in which the Vysstichi handled such discussions would be intimately different from the Esh'lahier.

And the academic in him was thus so aroused by the temptation of new experiences, and along with it, knowledge.

"Of course, cousin, I am yours to command." Stepping forward to break rank from the perfect formation, Ancarri's voice was servile, playing the part well. And while his perception of Elion was far from respectful, he understood that the greater things in life required subtlety and patience to accomplish, and so he could wait, watch and observe.

The pale elf bore their own badge and asserted themselves well, even deep in enemy territory, understanding that any fear, or apprehension would simply whet the appetites of those who call Har'oloth their home, and the esh'lahier were not deign to give them that degree of satisfaction, proud as they were in some lineaments, who thought themselves far better than the rest of the elfin race, who had received penance from the All-Father Himself.

As rigid as the esh'lahien society was, the Areth'ya were at least pragmatic, and more inclined to explore non-conventional avenues for their machinations. After all, betrayal was something so ingrained in their blood that ignoring it proved to only splinter the body from the soul. This, the vysstichi themselves would know only too well, and would have felt the exquisite pain dealt to their ancestors eras ago, and the betrayers descendants, indeed, one of the lineages of the original masterminds stood before them now, so quietly haughty.

With Elion back facing him as Ancarri moved forward to take his place beside the Prince of Areth'ya, the Prince of Areth'ya would not be able to see his cousin flash a dangerous, contented smile that belayed so many emotions yet none, finally taking his dutiful place beside his liege as they readied to meet with the leaders of the dark city.

Or as Ancarri likened to think -- his very own puppet. Yet as a master manipulator, it was vital to let those who you are using to believe that their own actions and beliefs were owned and due to their own choices and mental distillation, and had nothing to do with outside influences.
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Old February 24, 2012, 02:04 AM   #8 (permalink)
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The remaining Qos D’aronen continued to grip their swords uneasily as the foreign envoy was escorted inside, much to the chagrin of the many archers that lined the fortress’s battlements. Not even the recent marriage of Vysstichi and Esh’lahier cultures in Har’oloth had been able to completely negate the millennia of ingrained prejudice and distrust that the two nations had harbored for each other. That the entourage from Ethgan’tor had not been attacked on sight, however, did evidence that some progress had been made, some.

Upon passing the stronghold’s mammoth black gates, the guardswoman led the elves from House Areth’ya into an enormous cavern. Its minefield of stalagmites had been removed for both aesthetic and tactical purposes, creating a smooth earthen intersection that branched off into dozens of different corridors, some of them leading into shadowy side caverns and others into the Black Citadel itself. “This was once the seat of the High Collegium of Dark Arts,” the Dread Knight casually said, as if that statement alone explained why certain parts of the labyrinthine fortress had been constructed from the rocky walls themselves whereas others had been built from the ground up.

They continued further down the main juncture. Two rows of elegantly crafted statues flanked them on either side, naturally crafting a center aisle for them to travel in between. Standing on large, square-shaped pedestals and immortalized in stone were various legends of Har’oloth, most of them warriors or mages as evinced from their masterful craftsmanship.

After navigating through the giant-sized monuments, the guardswoman brought the Esh’lahier through a small tunnel that eventually widened into a sprawling training ground, where a clarion of ringing steel immediately greeted their ears. Thousands of elves accoutered in armor the color of shadows, most of them Vysstichi, filled the area, either drilling viciously against one another or marching in strict formation. Despite there being a majority of Vysstichi in the vicinity, a number of Esh’lahier could be seen mixed among the ranks. Some of them even paused to glance curiously at the envoy from House Areth’ya as they sauntered through.

The soldiers of the Black Legion,” the Qos D’aron imperiously explained along the way, nodding towards one of the Vysstichi women who walked up and down a line of swordsmen barking out commands in her native dialect. A number of warriors mounted atop giant green war lizards swiftly galloped past the group, sparing them cold, suspicious glances beneath their visored helms.

It was not until the escort led the Esh’lahier past the training grounds and through another series of heavily guarded, winding passageways that they arrived before two great doors wrought of some polished black metal. Built into a jagged rock wall, the entrance had seemingly been wrought from the hands of giants, for it towered nearly twenty feet above the pale-skinned elves. Surprisingly enough, no one stood guard outside the room.

We’re here, the Obsidian Throne,” the woman said. As she stepped towards the massive doors, they slowly opened inward as if propelled by some invisible force. The stone floor suddenly gave way to the deepest black marble, only hints of white veins visible throughout its sleek surface. Nodding to the Prince of House Areth’ya, the Qos D’aron walked inside, not waiting to see if the group followed after her.

Assuming they did, they would be greeted by a lofty chamber supported by superficial black stone columns that ushered them inside. Brilliant designs and scenes had been carved into the rock, telling stories of old as they wrapped down and around the pillars, waiting to be interpreted by those who knew them. In front of each column was an elf armed in dark plate-mail, swords drawn vertically and held with two hands in front of them. At the end of the room, which was at least one hundred feet from the entrance, sat the Obsidian Throne itself. Mounted on a midnight-colored dais that overlooked the massive chamber was a large seat seemingly born from the shadows themselves. Its armrests had been fashioned into a dragon’s claws that clutched two orbs that glowed with some inner fire –a skull-bobbled sword had been sheathed in an opening just to the side of the right armrest. The chair itself was designed to resemble that of a black dragon’s scaly body, with sinister wings fanning out to either side of its tall backrest and a soaring head that glared at the visitors through two ruby eyes.

Notwithstanding the Obsidian Throne’s imposing stature, a rather slender-looking dark elf sat on it. His disheveled silver hair gave him the appearance of a carefree young man, but there was something about the sharp glimmer in his crimson orbs that magnified his presence as he watched the newcomers enter.

My lord,” the female knight said, dropping to a knee and bringing her right hand diagonally across her breastplate in a sign of respect. “May I present to you Lord Elion of House Areth’ya and his kinsmen, all from Ethgan’tor.” With that clarified, the woman motioned for the nobles to step forward.

OOC:Apologies in advance for the really bad post (probably going to be a lot of mistakes). Just wanted to move the thread along, and I’m also typing it on my phone! O.O
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Old February 26, 2012, 09:11 PM   #9 (permalink)
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oocI am sincerely impressed that you typed all that on your phone. I can’t even type a text message properly on mine.

They were a long way from home, indeed.

Elion derived far less comfort from Ancarri’s presence than he had hoped. This city was strange to him, frightening in its austerity and the sharp contrast that it presented to the forested metropolis of Ethgan’tor. In truth, he hadn’t seen a Vysstichi until they had arrived here, and now he was walking into their very hold with a set of limp words and flimsy promises with which to barter on behalf of a father who had yet to actually possess the Sunlight Crown. Chilled, Elion shivered in combination with the fear and stepped a bit closer to his cousin, wrapping his arm lightly around Ancarri’s elbow and letting his hand rest on top of the other pair.

“Strange, is it not,” Elion began, whispering to Ancarri in their native tongue, “how similar it all looks from the inside?” His golden eyes glanced with slight interest in the details pointed out by their unfortunate tour guide, measuring the unevenness of the walls and the grandeur of the stonework. It was dark here and full of shadow—but so too was Ethgan’tor. The Esh’lahier just did a much better job at hiding those less desirable aspects of their nature behind purity, austerity, and a blank whiteness to match the sickly tint of their skin. “I find it all so…fascinating.” The pause in Elion’s voice betrayed just how much thought had to be invested to overcome his growing sense of uncertainty—a detail that his well-acquainted cousin would surely not miss.

Despite millennia of hostilities, a fragile peace had been created here in this strange intermingling of white and black. The Esh’lahier contingent was wary, of course, and still ever armed and careful when in the presence of equally-prepared Dread Knights, but it was relegated simply to cautious looks and ever-telling placements of their hands so close to the hilts of their weapons. Their looks were not, however, ones of judgment or outright hatred—simply mistrust. That, in and of itself, was a great victory over what ancestral pride and old wounds had sundered apart so completely a thousand generations ago in K’Terak, and perhaps the first repair of many still to be built.

The woman cast a glance in the direction the knight pointed, though the sight of drills did not seemingly inspire much in the way of interest. She managed a polite nod and something akin to a strangled smile that attempted to lighten her pale, colorless features in the process. “A most impressive array. You do honor us.” Already the attendant’s mind was churning with images, setting them aside with proper labels into her memory for future recounting. A lesser cousin of a lower line she might have been, but talent and, more importantly, opportunity, could change even the most static of conditions.

Their arrival at the throne room prompted Elion to finally release his grip on his cousin’s arm and step forward with all the saunter and pretended confidence he could muster. The lesser figures took the cue and moved backward and away, again creating a misshapen semicircle out of instinct about the one who stood in for their liege lord.

The first step was always the hardest. After that one came a much quicker second, propelling the young lord of Areth’ya further before the black dais. His eyes dipped respectfully in time with the knight’s introduction, but his chin never wavered nor bowed—not even in the slightest. No matter appearances, Elion wasn’t a supplicant here, as his father had been so apt at repeating to him during the brightenings just prior to their exit from Ethgan’tor. They were here on matters of business standing on equal footing—or, at least, as equal as their racial statuses could bear.

“High Lord,” Elion began, letting those same golden eyes rise up to meet the gaze of Har’oloth’s de facto king. “Thank you for this opportunity to speak. My father, the Keeper of the Moon, sends his regards and congratulations for your most recent victory.” The Common was halting and stilted. The heavy accent made it impossible to distinguish whether his reluctance was nervousness or poorly rehearsed lines regurgitated without sincerity. “We would like to extend the hand of friendship to you and your people. Perhaps we could even be…useful to one another.”
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Old March 7, 2012, 02:08 AM   #10 (permalink)
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They were not what he’d expected. From his luxurious throne, the young warlord browsed the pale faces that stared at him from below, each of them chiseled with a likeness that reminded him of his dear wife. It was not their complexions that intrigued him, but rather, the identities behind those poised visages. Like Eilantha Kostith’elgg, his second-in-command, they were nobles. What’s more, their leader was none other than the son of the Keeper of the Moon, who Faust naturally presumed to be the King of Ethgan’tor, or some variation thereof. Gods, had he known who his visitors were going to be this brightening, then he would have asked his wife to enlighten him on her people’s hierarchy beforehand.

The Keeper of the Moon honors us greatly with his kind words and by sending his own son to deliver them personally,” Faust genuinely returned. Swinging his right leg over his knee, the dark elf leaned back in his chair and rested his hands over its claw-shaped armrests, his fingers conveniently fitting between the dragon’s talons. Although the nobleman’s Charismean was difficult to follow due to his thick accent, Faust nevertheless managed to sift through it for meaning.

Prior to the audience, the High Lord of Har’oloth had spent a great deal of time pondering the nature of the Esh’lahiers’ visitation. He had known prior to meeting Elion that messengers from Ethgan’tor had arrived, but he had never expected anyone of the highborn’s standing to be the “delivery boy,” for lack of a better term. Centuries of ingrained pessimism had prompted his advisors to caution him about the likelihood of an assassination attempt –hence Soulseeker’s nearby presence- but he had discounted that possibility immediately upon learning the identities of those coming to see him.

Honestly, though, even before Elion had come, Faust had often wondered how the Esh’lahier would view what had recently transpired in Har’oloth. In light of what happened, he was unsurprised that he and his people had riveted the attention of Ethgan'tor itself, but still, knowing elven pride, he was somewhat astonished that they had contacted him so soon. Then again, perhaps he should not have been. When Hon’elgg had subtly sought the genocide of the shadow elves living in the city, House Kitrye’veresi had instantly taken arms to join House Kostith’elgg in its war to repel the traditionalist Vysstichi. It had been the bloodiest battle that anyone in Har’oloth had ever seen, and even now, the city was far from healed and short on allies.

Thus, Faust received the nobleman’s subsequent proposal for a friendship between Har’oloth and Ethgan’tor with a breath of relief.

An earnest smile formed along the Vysstichi Lord’s lips as he courteously waited for Elion to finish. “We of Har’oloth would be more than pleased to accept your hand of friendship,” Faust said, offering a sincere nod to the Keeper of the Moon’s son. If truth be told, he doubted that an alliance with Ethgan’tor would be enough for Har’oloth to overcome the combined forces of Herozzal and Hon’elgg, but it certainly was a start, a most promising start in reuniting the elven races. Besides, with both of those hostile city-states virtually knocking on Har’oloth’s door already, Faust knew that he and his people were in dire need of every ally they could get.

A scholar once told me that Har’oloth was founded on the belief that Vysstichi and Esh’lahier, having once been a unified people, could coexist together like in the days of old,” the High Lord said. “Those of us living under the shelter of the Black Citadel share that belief still, and it brings me great joy to know that today we take another great leap in that direction.

And I agree with you, Lord Elion, that our two cities could accomplish much together,” the dark elf nodded once more. “What are your father’s thoughts on the matter?
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Old March 7, 2012, 11:32 AM   #11 (permalink)
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He allowed Elion to pay the pleasantries while he watched and observed. Elion was far from a talented politician, far too readable by esh'lahien standards though he could not be faulted for trying. Ancarri on the other hand, was deign to play the part of the quiet observer, watching everything as though he was enamored by the mild terror and unfamiliarity that somehow stroked some intimate core of himself to such a degree that it frightened and tantalized him.

The stories were heard of course, accounts, rumors, yet there was truly nothing like seeing it with one's own eyes. The glint in the wine-colored eyes of Ancarri so easily construed as blind fascination though he turned his closest ear towards Elion as he spoke in that native tongue that rolled off their lips far easier than the crude common.

"Still your heart, cousin," It wasn't spoken in a rebuking tone, but one that was almost breathless, as though Ancarri himself needed the pillar of strength represented by Elion. A gentle touch of his arm on Elion's turned into a quick grip of reassurance, even though the cousin of the Prince was filled with mockery within.

"Your resolve must be demonstrated, as the future Prince." He smiled reassuringly as they came before the High Lord and those that attended to him. Elion's observations were not entirely far from the truth, and indeed, resonated and strummed at Ancarri's soul in manners that he would find it impossible to articulate at that point in time.

It was very hard not to sneer when Faust repeated his learnings, but Ancarri somehow managed to keep an accommodating expression, catching the twitch just as it would blossom on his lips. Surely their leader would not be as naive to think that any 'friendship' or 'alliance' wrought would only be temporal? Blood was still blood at the end of the darkening, and when victors were assumed, their difference would eventually come to light again, ignored in times of convenience only.

Such as now -- even if Ancarri felt stifled, there was an excitement that surged through his veins that resonated with the darkness that Har'oloth had to offer, singing in unintellgible voices to him to be seduced, if only he would surrender.

He enjoyed the struggles between mind, body and soul for now, and instead focused his attention back on the figure, admiring nothing but the power he seemed to emanate.

Standing in a position that would no draw undue attention, just to the side and behind Elion was Ancarri, still veiled in the cowl of his robe, so that all that was revealed was only a thinly laced smile.

Oh, how he loathed to be in Elion's shadow, standing behind him in a servile posture that demonstrated his willingness to serve. Yet Ancarri was intimately aware that he served no one, perhaps only himself. Loyalty was after all, a concept that was nonexistent to an esh'lahier, he was surprised that the vysstichi seemed so ready to forgot. Perhaps their isolation from the dazzling world beyond only served to place emphasize on those lessons, lessons drawn from a time of antiquity that the newer generations outside of the pale elf culture had forgotten.

As for Elion?

Ancarri could wait. He would wait.

Soon.
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Old March 8, 2012, 09:16 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Shifting uneasily, Elion managed something of a pinched smile across his pallid features, though the expression looked far more strangled and uncertain than he had intended. The yellow eyes marking his ancient, turbulent bloodline bowed slightly at Faust’s return to his artfully polite greeting, though they, too, swept oddly from side to side. It was taking every ounce of the young lordling’s willpower to keep them from seeking out those deep orbs of his cousin’s, trying to wring every last ounce of strength from Ancarri’s far more strict and forthright soul to comfort his.

But it was his move now, and his show, as his father had been so keen on reminding him repeatedly before they had left Ethgan’tor. He was the one responsible for bartering this deal playing on power and the hopeful gaining of it, and he would be the one crowned with victory when it was confidently concluded and established.

“My father will be most pleased as well,” the prince of Areth’ya managed, though the thickness of his accent over the Common words did much to help hide the uncertainty felt within their speaker’s heart and mind. Elion clasped both hands behind himself in the crook of his back, letting them rest lightly where his back arched with the gentle angle of his spine. Every finger was interlaced tightly enough together to cut off circulation. “It has been too long since our peoples have spoken as equals.” And that statement was enough to make every ancestor in the ancient Forest of Light turn over in their graves and moan.

The very corners of Elion’s mouth pinched when the High Lord recounted his pleasant little story. Again the Esh’lahier’s throbbing heart was called upon to steel his reaction to the land of idle disinterest, using the opportunity to let his eyes raise and wander about the ornate carving of the dark throne. K’Terak may have been hundreds of generations in their pasts, but the wounds were still felt ever so deeply whenever the hysi caesadea sung their tales of the sins of the Kinslaying Wars in the Tiri’yaana. No child of the pale kindred would have ever forgotten just who were the transgressors and who redeemed themselves at the last.

And yet he was here. The blatant irony was far too obvious for even one such as Elion to miss. The young elf managed a small nod when the moment had ended, and even brought himself to feign the smallest of glints in his eye that could have been construed for a myriad of meanings. “Our people have not forgotten yours,” he began, though the words were slow to form underneath the layers of thought required to piece together his intended meaning, “and it is our hope that the we may move forward as well and no longer be shackled by the fragmented past.” Elfin memories were long, though, but ambition was a fire that burned fiercely and brightly against even the coldest of restraints.

For generations Areth’ya had walked that careful line between image and reality. Some said that they had already blurred it, stepping over into the shadows that even the populace of Ethgan’tor could find only villainous and terrible. How they would view this, the arrival of the Areth’ya delegation in the den of Har’oloth, would only be assuredly positive so long as it succeeded.

“My father believes that we have mutual enemies without as well as potential enemies within.” Those same golden eyes, still watery and uneasy in their gaze, wandered back to meet those of the High Lord as his tone grew almost conspiratorial in sound. “Would it not be a better defense for both if we stood together against them? It is my father’s thought that we may perhaps consider just how to most beneficially use outside interference in internal matters to each other’s disposal for the removal and eradication of those closest of threats.”

Theirs had a name that Elion clearly knew, but delicacy had to be upheld.
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Old April 4, 2012, 01:05 PM   #13 (permalink)
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From his elevated throne, the High Lord filtered through the nobleman’s thick accent only to find words bereft of emotion. Thus, the usual cues that conveyed sincerity and pretense were lost upon the Vysstichi Prince, who generally relied upon such things to assist him in reading through the subtleties of politics. He supposed that he should not have been surprised, though, considering what he knew of the Esh’lahier people, a knowledge born in large part from his relationship with his wife. She could mask her emotions better than anyone, an ability that, Faust decided after meeting the envoy from Ethgan’tor, was widely shared among her stoic people.

There was something about the elf’s smooth oratory that nagged at Faust’s conscience like a deep splinter. Well, perhaps it was not the nobleman’s responses so much as it was the timing of his visitation. Notwithstanding the coexistence of Esh’lahier and Vysstichi enclaves in Har’oloth for centuries, Ethgan’tor had never shown the slightest interest in improving its relations with the unique city. That proven indifference could easily have been attributed to the fact that Vysstichi had traditionally dominated Har’oloth, but then again, the Esh’lahier population had been stronger back then and significantly more influential.

That begged the question: why now?

Curling his arm backward while propping his elbow on the throne, Faust framed the side of his face with his index finger and thumb, his other digits folded loosely against his callused palm. He wore a contemplative expression on his visage throughout the Prince of House Areth’ya’s response, a clear indication that he was paying the utmost attention to the pale-skinned elf’s words. Some effort on his part was required not to frown when Elion alluded to the longstanding memories of his people, but Faust managed nevertheless. The same could easily have been said about the black elves, the majority of which hated their treacherous cousins with an undying passion.

My people are the Vysstichi and the Esh’lahier living in Har’oloth. Black- or gray-skinned, it makes no difference here anymore,” Faust gently corrected, his crimson eyes darting meaningfully to some of the guardsmen in the room, their complexions as pallid as Elion’s. Once his point was lucidly made, the Vysstichi Lord returned his gaze to the nobleman. “Have you ever been to war, Lord Elion?” the dark elf curiously asked, his voice deliberately sincere and soft as he was uncertain if the young man could possibly grasp what he’d meant earlier –few could. He waited a moment for the prince of Ethgan’tor to respond before continuing, “It’s said that the bonds of brotherhood bred through war are far stronger than those born from blood.

Those living in Har’oloth share such a bond,” Faust said, his countenance darkening metaphorically as the conversation naturally evoked memories of the recent, brutal war. “We’ve already moved forward together, and we will gladly do so with those who share and support our convictions.” He offered a firm nod to the Esh’lahier standing below him.

The crux of the conversation finally surfaced when Elion ambiguously suggested how the two nations could cooperate with one another. Dropping his hand from his face back onto his chair’s armrest, Faust considered the man’s proposal briefly. “Your father is correct,” the High Lord answered. “I can already name two. One is dwelling beneath Acumin and the other brooding below Nexus Prime. There are many others, no doubt,” The acrimony in his words was palpable. Once Hon’elgg licked its fresh wounds, it would surely come back with a vengeance, and when and if that was ever accomplished, it would return its attention to wiping the mortal earth of its enemies, including the Esh’lahier elves.

As Elion shrewdly emphasized certain words to hint at an underlying meaning, Faust leaned forward slightly in his chair. “And how does your father propose we do that?” he earnestly asked.
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Old May 14, 2012, 03:51 PM   #14 (permalink)
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oocyour PC’s wife is appreciates the compliments, lol

Whether offended or simply bemused, Elion’s reaction to the quick correction Faust had made about the assumption of “his people” was to instantly scoff. It was light and quickly done, but it was there. Ethgan’tor had, after all, existed for generations as a single, pure, and unadulterated faction of the holy people that had escaped the machinations of his darker forefathers. Was Har’oloth so weak that it had to absorb pieces of Esh’lahien strength too to bolster its defenses?

Perhaps that was why Svenamos Areth’ya was interested in this city and its newly-appointed High Lord. The scent of weakness did, after all, bring out the fiercest of predators from the shadows, even when they were otherwise so safely ensconced behind their high walls—at least for now. Threats always existed. Turbulence was always a guarantee. And yet again Elion’s thoughts ran him directly back to where he started—the innumerable reasons why his father, the great Lord of the Triad, had sent him here, of all places.

“May I congratulate you then upon your prudence, my lord. That you have forged ahead on this path of tolerance makes our task to eradicate the misbegotten prejudice long-existent in Ethgan’tor that much easier.” Oh, it was so easy to let the accent-laced Common words blossom in fragrant plumages over the tongue. This wasn’t Ethgan’tor. These weren’t Esh’lahier who lived and breathed by a turn of a phrase or a particular intonation. This was a world that lacked the subtlety of the pale kindred, and here, even Elion Areth’ya, the long-labeled simpleton child of a most grand father and even greater lineage, could be considered bright.

Faust’s question drew a slow, reluctant shake of the young lordling’s head, though his golden eyes glowed and sparkled intently with kindled interest. He smiled, though the expression was mute and vague, at the Vysstichi lord’s conclusion. “I fear I must demur at the last. It is House Areth’ya’s greatest hope to avoid a war at all. Ethgan’tor has been peaceful since its founding after the migration from K’Terak. We wish not to break this particular pattern,” he swept about grandly, still keeping that fake, fragile smile plastered ever so carefully across his pale, chiseled features.

“Our conviction is that peace cannot be given, but rather only taken,” Elion continued. The mention of Nexus Prime and Acumin, cities lost in the great geography of the foreign Aelyrian lands, sparked absolutely no sense of recognition in any corner or detail of his face. Either the man was still playing the part of consummate actor or Ethgan’torian education had been sorely lacking in regards to the world surrounding their secretive hold. “Ethgan’tor has paid the price for our peace over and over and over again—and most preferably in the blood of our enemies, rather than our own. That is what my father proposes, my lord.”

He glanced at Faust again, dropping his head most regally lower than his shoulders and letting the blanched lids half-close on his eyes in a gesture of deference and sincere respect—or, at least, as sincere as one born and bred under the falsities and petty little games of Ethgan’tor’s elite could muster. There was still that smile that was constantly present and staring up at Faust from underneath yellow eyes that spent far too much time skirting over toward a wine-colored pair in an Esh’lahier toward the back to be a mere coincidence. “Our conviction is that need breeds allies, that a cost does not have to be paid by the individual, and that a relationship that is mutually beneficial to both parties, and continues to be so, is one that will never be broken.”

Elion took a step forward now, driven by both his interest as well as his intent to finally relieve the weight that had long been lying on the center of his chest ever since his father had divulged his secrets to his chosen messenger. “House Areth’ya has strengths at its disposal that can weaken, or perhaps even eradicate, those threats that remain to your noble city of Har’oloth. Such independent interference from an external source could never be traced nor have hazardous consequences for your most lofty people if things are not as…successful as one could hope.”

And then, finally, the smile dropped, and the Esh’lahier’s face took on a look instead of deadly calm. “We would only ask that such a favor be returned for some problematic issues that have arisen in our own most humble land,” he explained, turning again to study the Vysstichi High Lord with ever curious interest.
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Old June 10, 2012, 07:06 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Faust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious SuperheroFaust Kitrye'veresi is a glorious Superhero


The Prince of House Areth’ya had a tongue as smooth as silver and a befitting arrogance to accompany it. But for the haughty scoff that betrayed Elion’s true sentiments, Faust would have been unable to see through the flowery verbiage that disguised them. The High Lord’s fingers dug subtly into the armrests of his chair. The way that Elion carried himself would have suggested to a casual observer that it was in fact he who sat on a throne when in actuality the complete opposite was the case. Faust was not old by any means, but he recognized the young nobleman’s ego for what it was. The Esh’lahien prince clearly believed himself superior to every breathing creature in Har’oloth.

How easily that misperception could have been corrected with a sword.

Alas, pragmatism finally won the day and quelled the Vysstichi Lord’s increasing desire to humble the spoiled shadow elf. The gods knew – everyone in the Nightlands knew- that Har’oloth could not afford to add more enemies to its list of would-be conquerors. “It’s a start,” Faust replied, unconsciously deflecting the praise as he felt it premature if not halfhearted. Although Har’oloth had come a long way in deconstructing the barriers that had divided Vysstichi and Esh’lahier for millennia, there was still much to be done and more blood to be shed.

Or at least, that’s what Faust had originally envisioned.

Despite Elion’s justifications for House Areth’ya’s neutrality over the years, many of which made perfect sense, the explanation in its entirety concerned the dark elf more than his unmoving expression conveyed. As if it was not aggravating enough that the pompous nobleman was speaking vaguely, he seemed to be contradicting himself. On the one hand, he appeared intent on reciting Ethgan’tor’s peace-loving tendencies; on the other, he believed that peace needed to be seized in order to be secured.

Faust resisted the urge to rub his temples in mild annoyance. What was with this elf and his ambiguities? For a moment the dark elf considered suspending the audience until his wife arrived to the city. Perhaps she would have a much better chance of interpreting her kinsman’s words, which, despite being in Charismean, might as well have been in the Esh’lahier tongue. Once again, diplomacy overruled the Vysstichi Lord’s irritation, and he continued to listen notwithstanding his inclination to strangle some clarity out of the Esh’lahien prince.

Your father speaks wisely,” Faust perfunctorily commended, even though he was not entirely sure what the Esh’lahien lord was proposing other than ostensible friendship thus far. Until some semblance of substance actualized from the arrangement, the Vysstichi Lord was hesitant to fully rely upon Ethgan’tor as Har’oloth’s ally.

In any case, he watched the Prince of House Areth’ya step forward with flair that bespoke overflowing conceitedness. The man wore it like a glove. And it was not until that moment that things began to dawn upon the High Lord, who spoke more clearly with a sword than he did his own tongue. Gods, he would need Tiyribi to educate him on political-speak eventually. His comprehension of it was negligible at most.

Silence responded to Elion as he presented his proposal, one that, although it had yet to be completely fleshed out, nevertheless forecasted many interesting possibilities. Faust initially wanted to tell the Esh’lahien prince that “talk was cheap,” but even he was not so clueless as to reply in such a blunt manner. Instead, he weighed the man’s words carefully, almost like a genuine politician might. “And what strengths would those be, if I might ask?

That was most definitely the million crown question. Whereas it was clear what Har’oloth was capable of doing as it had singlehandedly opposed Hon’elgg and won, Ethgan’tor, as Elion had lucidly pointed out earlier, had very rarely made a showing of its power. Then again, it probably did not have to very often as the entire city was concealed in the Forest of Light. “I have no qualms with returning the favor to House Areth’ya. It’s the least that I can do for your people’s support,” Faust was quick to add afterwards, “but out of curiosity, what issues currently plague Ethgan’tor? It would be in our interest to know in order to best discern how to provide our assistance.
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Grandmaster Swordsman"Throughout Aelyria's history, there have been tales and stories of mythological warriors sometimes mistaken for blessed or divine entities. Godlike fighters, the Grandmasters are forever remembered for their valor and are known to break the physical limitations seemingly at will, capable of Masteries that lesser fighters can scarcely comprehend, let alone attempt. Often called one-man armies, Grandmasters are able to defeat countless lower-proficient fighters without much difficulty. Their physique is a testament to their life-long struggle to achieve this near-perfection; through enough conditioning and practice, a Grandmaster can withstand amazing amounts of physical pain and anguish. Incredibly fast and strong, their courage and valor enable them to seemingly perform miracles." - Arms Primer | Correspondence | Glory of the Conqueror"The Aspect of Constantine infuses your words and actions; when you are engaged in armed or magical combat, commanding armies on the tactical battlefield, or planning a military stratagem for warfare, you will have a decisive advantage against a character of the same relative skill, all other influences being equal, and will be able to out-maneuver them." - Kaelon
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