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7 [Year 501 Fall]








Akhal Teke X


14.3 hh







Last Visit:

04-10-2021, 12:42 AM




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"There now, you can see my brother, the other Ole-Luk-Oie; he is also called Death.
"You perceive he is not so bad as they represent him in picture books; there he is a skeleton, but now his coat is embroidered with silver, and he wears the splendid uniform of a hussar, and a mantle of black velvet flies behind him, over the horse. Look, how he gallops along." -- Ole Lukøje

silver, silver, silver.

No, I don't hate my body. I get that a lot. Even if they don't say it - I know what they're thinking. She's so ugly, or, she was almost beautiful. But that thing sticking out of her eye -disgusting. It must be hard for her.

And maybe it is, sometimes. But what's anybody going to do about it? Cut it off? It's part of me. Almost always has been. Never growing except as I grew, never changing even as I change. When I was born, maybe I had that eye. I can almost imagine seeing everything around me at once, but I don't know if that was ever real. And even if it was - it isn't my reality now.

I am silver. Once, I was entirely silver, but the sleepmother sought to change that - not because she disliked my consistency, but because I needed to change. Most of my right hind leg was a mangled mess of muscle and hair and pulsing snake-hide; now it is glass. It had always been painful, and I would not have been able to perform my duties sufficiently. I couldn’t run, and everyone would notice it. Now, there is no pain (no feeling), and you might not even see it if you weren’t looking. And almost no one is ever looking at me. The horn coming through my left eye is a similar story; flesh had to be regularly cut away as infection tried to set in while the spindle of keratin and nerves grew up. It stopped growing when I did, and the sleepmother had a glass cap made for me, fused into my skin as my new leg. If you look closely, you might see more than a shadow, but she made certain that the glass would be rather opaque. My tail, also, is serpentine; it is scaled and silvery as my coat. Some pale scales dot my flank and neck. My eyes are silver, my hooves are silver, my mane is silver still. My body is sleek and bony and not very tall. Some tell me that I am graceful despite the leg; what they mean is that I move like an asp, venomous and silent. (Except for the occasional clink.) As a half-breed, my kelpie transformation is rather abysmal. Save for the long jaws, the sharp fangs, I am much the same; my scales multiply and my body grows longer and more flexible. If you didn’t look too long at my face, you might not even notice. (Had I sought to join my cousins as I often imagined, I am certain that I would be dead).

"You have a dreamer's look; you must not dream. It is only sick people who dream." -- Herodias, Salome
soft like silver, hard like steel. soft like silver, hard like steel.
think of it as a chant.
soft like silver, hard like steel. say it again. again. again.

pious. yes - very. i was born in solis' land, bred out of vicious miragi blood and something else, mortal, grass-eating, i think. i've got enough miragi in me that i make you nervous. i don't have enough in me to go out and live with them. i used to think i did, when i was little. but then the sleepwives found me, and my life was bound to the purple-pink sky - to vespera - forever. i don't shed my solis-parts, my sand-hungry pieces. they'll always be there. couldn't get rid of them if i tried.

the sleepwives are different. you might call them a cult, or an order, but it's nothing so structured. so patriarchal. we simply are. we pray, we train, we pray, we practice. we get paid. yeah - that's the truth. sorry. it's as much about the money as it is vespera - don't let anyone tell you otherwise. we don't live in luxury, that's not it, but we have to pay to feed everybody, luscious as the land is, and we don't have our own blacksmith. I don't know what the business model was. the sleepmother is like a high priestess, i guess, and she sends girls - women - out to whisper our names in dark places, and listen for whispers of jealousy and greed. and mysterious girls with hollow souls. sorry - hallow. excuse me.

they don't lie to us. we're mercenaries, more organized like a temple than a band or a gang. vespera keeps us in line, with the sleepmother. she gets us while we're young, hopefully too young to have more than a few ideals. they change, anyway. your ideals. some girls don't adapt well, can't get through the fasting and the praying and the magic fizzles out somewhere between their hearts and their minds. we put them to sleep, when they can't make it. it's part of our training - to prove we can make it. the first person you put to sleep isn't on the job, like some high-stakes story. the first person you put to sleep is a friend, maybe a rival. you grew up with her. she can't advance with you, and they can't afford to keep her behind. so she dies.

i don't think of it like that, though. it's not killing, really. it's peaceful. sleep without dreaming, and then everything ends. you're sleeping, so you don't even know when it ends. or you might, i don't know. there could be a great big light and a public service announcement that you were killed. put to sleep, i mean. put to sleep.

i've killed, anyway, and i know it's different. well- i've killed squirrels and rats and birds and things. when i'm hungry. not really a fish person, if i'm being honest, and i've no idea how my family gets by on lizards and snakes. there's nothing like sticking your fangs in the warm flesh of a creature no bigger than your snout, heart beating so fast it hums. then stops. the silence! oh, the silence. it's astounding.

some of the girls have killed, though. something went wrong, their magic didn't stick, they got scared, a wandering servant or stirring lover interfered. they had to use their knife, or their poisons, or their teeth. the poisons are like putting somebody to sleep. but the teeth, the hooves, the daggers - those girls come back different. hollow. not hallow.

so, yes, we learn to use knives and poisons and things like that. but we don't need them. not usually. our magic requires us to get close, if we only want to put one person to sleep - but entire parties have been done. sometimes, we really only give them a little nap. sometimes somebody wakes up, if there's interference, or the sleepwife is inexperienced. some people are just fitful sleepers. but, yes, i know how to wield steel and hemlock. if i must.

I like people. The sleepwives gave me no reason not to, even if I grew up starving and unloved. Maybe I worry about it happening again, with outsiders. But I can always trust my sisters. They wouldn't disown me for all the unsolicited nicknames. I say they don't know how lucky they are - try turning Sopor into something cute!

There is a ritual to the killing. Meditation . prayer. pursuit. Arrival at the bed, the dark corridor, the quiet balcony. Evening comes quickly. Thought or word, probably thought, so nobody screams. And then there is the silence. The terrible, yawning silence. Nothing is there. sleep. death. nothingness. All has ended for your target, your victim, the gift which you deliver to vespera. And then you are alone, or you are beside a lover or child who will awaken to a corpse in the morning. I like to watch their faces as they go, the muscles relaxing into death. I imagine their souls rising into the purple light of Her eternal dusk. sometimes, I must go quickly. It is preferable. but I always make time to watch, if I can. Rarely is there an emergency for a sleepwife, a hasty exit. Instead there is the ritual. As I said. The ritual. The ending. I wonder what death is like. I wonder at how I have evaded it, how my sisters have not. When it will come for me. If it will. eternal sleep is immortality. But to be immortal without the dreams. The dreams. I need to have the dreams back. I remember what it was like. before. I want them back, vespera, what would it take for me to be as I am and have them back. tell me your price goddess. i am so hollow inside. In my mind. empty. dark. Quiet. Always so quiet. Just tell me and I will pay. I won’t even haggle, mother. I promise. Please. I promise.

"I will show you my brother. He is also called Ole-Luk-Oie but he never visits any one but once, and when he does come, he takes him away on his horse, and tells him stories as they ride along. He knows only two stories.

"One of these is so wonderfully beautiful, that no one in the world can imagine anything at all like it; but the other is just as ugly and frightful, so that it would be impossible to describe it." -- Ole Lukøje
What is god to an urchin, but stolen bread and a bucket of rainwater?

They came to me at dusk.
Evening comes quickly, she whispered in my ear.
(Everything disappeared, after that.)

An eternally purple sky overhead. Sleep without dreaming. Am I awake? Is anyone?
Meditation. Fasting. Meditation. Fasting. Stay awake.
Then: magic.
Everyone in the tower sleeps but me.
"Did I do well?"
Yes, darling. You did so well.
Nobody woke up for a long time.
Some of our best were in there. They could've died, someone said.
And if they had, the sleepmother said, then they wouldn't have been our best anymore.

It's not killing. They sleep, they do not dream. Then it ends. All at once: like flipping a coin, the moment the coin hits the ground and it's: heads. Or tails. Whichever is the losing side, if you did it right. We try to keep our coins weighted.

Sometimes I slide through the alleyways like a shadow and put all the hungry people to sleep. The sick, the dying, the amputee veterans (or prisoners, writers, curfew-breakers) from Solis's reign or Raum's; they all sleep. Nobody knows to look for me; there is not even a rumor of my work. The others pretend not to know, or they don't know; I'm never certain. They don't say anything, either way. None of us dream. The only place we can act out our desires is reality.

That's when I visit Solterra, anyway. The rest of the alleyways are better; fewer sick, fewer hungry. Orestes works hard, I imagine, but I'm out of the loop anyway and there was never enough water in the desert to begin with. People don't belong there. I think the Mirage could eat all the Davke alive if they wanted to, and anyway, the old tribes were never like anyone else to begin with. I'm half convinced they were made out of the sand like we were.

That's where I came from: Solterra. Something in my blood is always just-before-boiling, when the water vibrates and bubbles but nothing happens and you know only that it's probably hot, just probably, but you might stick your finger in if you weren't sure how long it had been on the flame. Snapping jaws for a mother - or was it my father? I'm not sure. Somebody had Mirage in them. One of the sleepers, I guess - those Observers the smart chieftains send in. I've met a few, in my time. None of them ever took me with them, but I never asked. I imagined they could smell it on me, though, all that tarnish and rat's blood. Somebody dropped me off here.

It took a woman without dreams to pick me up.

"Who is Vespera to you?" she asked.

"A lie," I said. "I worship the sand."

She laughed at me. I was only a child; proud and frightened all at once. We are still children under Vespera, she would say now, I'm certain.

"The sand has not come for you yet," she said, "but Vespera has."

If you asked me that question - who is Vespera to me - now, I'd say: my mother. A goddess, of course. But I haven't forgotten the sand. It still sings to me, when I'm near enough to the desert to hear it. But I worship the evening now, the purple sky, the falling of the sun. The moment before Solis sleeps, where it feels like falling and he might just snap awake, but doesn't.
Ah. But I have neglected to tell you about my leg. It was always mangled; a mess of bone and snakeflesh twisted into an almost-leg, a bit of hoof at the end, wrongly-made muscles and twisted nerves - nothing I could walk on. And it was ugly. Really, truly, disturbing to look upon. And while the sleepmother could excuse my horn, and my mouth, the leg she did away with. It's better that way; I have all but kept her from filing down my horn into something less conspicuous all these years. I could be described and recognized easily enough, but if I do my job right (and I do), there is no one to remember me. I am nothing but a whisp of silver passing in a crowd.

There is a theory, somewhere - I read it once, when I had to go put a bookworm to sleep - that if you do not dream you go insane. It was written, of course, by someone who has continued to dream. Nobody asked us. We are all sane. Vespera keeps us. We keep her vigil. And we bring lost souls to her breast, quiet and without dreaming. Suddenly. Like death. But it isn't. I said it before. It's the falling, just before you wake up, heart beating in your chest. But there's no falling. No beating heart. No waking up.

Active & Parvus Magic

Passive Magic

Bonded & Pets

Armor, Outfit, and Accessories

[Half Veil] For special occasions, she wears a veil that starts at a white metal half sun/half moon design at her crown, dips across the right side of her face, and ends at a white metal collar on her neck. Her horn-eye is hardly obscured by the veil, particularly when she moves, but Sopor considers this an artistic choice.

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Played by:

Muirgen (PM Player)


thousandcurs    //   



Staff Log

Saved incentives/prizes: None.

10/02/20 character application accepted w/minor mutation - GRIFFIN
10/05/20 +3 EXP for muirgen’s 1st anniversary. -SID
10/05/20 +3 EXP for muirgen’s 2nd anniversary. -SID
12/21/20 moved character from Dusk Court Citizen to Inactive per Muirgen's request. -GRIFFIN
04/04/21 +400 signos and removed mutation item from inventory & records. Mutation (for reptilian tail) no longer needed for this character due to the April 2021 design rule changes. -INKBONE