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Current
Current Novus date and time is
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 Year || 503
 Season || Winter
 Temp || -10℉ (-23℃) to 55℉ (12℃)
 Weather || Winter has left a blanket of pristine white snow in many parts of Novus. Only Solterra remains mostly untouched by the season's frosted hold, but even the desert may feel a cold breath of wind now and then. With Winter now settled across the continent, dreams of Spring dance in the minds of many.

Spotlight
Member: E-cho

Character: Seraphina

Pair: Moira & Asterion

Thread: Coloring outside the lines

Quote: "There is something to be said for how soothing habit could be, when one was trying to avoid words they shouldn’t say." Theodosia, Cinderblock gardens
see here for nominations


Private - GODHOOD & GIRLHOOD
Apolonia — Day Court Youth Signos: 45
▶ Played by RB [pm] Posts: 34 — Threads: 5
▶ Female [She/Her/Hers] Hth: 10 — Atk: 10 — Exp: 10
▶ 1 [Year 502 Spring] Active Magic: Perception Manipulation
▶ 15.1 hh Bonded: N/A
#1


EVENING CAME ON LIKE A BIG RED WING -
[Image: apolonia_by_erasvita_dcmlqry_by_beccazw-dcnhnsj.png]

In the stuttering lamplight draining from a colored sconce a girl watches Denocte with the wrong kind of eyes.

For once she does not try to hide the third orb, unblinking, that sits like seaglass against the white of her forehead. Instead she stand half in the darkness and half in the light (when does she not?) and sloughs her dark hair from her cheeks and rolls her shoulders back to stand as strangely upright as she always does, hips tilted, head raised. 

A soft clarinet wails through the street, singing a song wild and pensive. And O shivers at the touch of it on her spine and the way it makes her muscles curl underneath that soot-stained skin. Torrents of people pass through the streets in every color of coat and gleaming where the light catches their diamonds and ropes of gold and the strange, gauzy shimmer of opalescent fabrics O does not think she has ever seen, not even in her mother’s overstuffed closet. Dragons spit smoke over the cobblestone, smash rings of fire against the ground. The air is filled with a scent so heady it makes O’s skull ring and for a moment she tries to pick out exactly what it is - cinnamon, amber, sweat - but it takes only a moment to realize the task is fruitless, impossible in entirety, and she gives up easily.

It is the kind of thing that should make her nervous but doesn’t. Maybe it’s the Denoctian in her blood - loathe though she is to remember that part of her, how it stains her insides like wine on white sheets - maybe it’s just her and her neverending godliness - either way she does not feel quite as out of place as she thought she might, and her heartbeat slurs in her chest instead of pounds.

A bomb skitters across the street and vanishes into thin air.

Apolonia crosses the alleyway perpendicular to the rush of the crowd. She stalks straight across with little attention paid to the way strangers almost stumble onto her, the stares that follow her triple-eyed gaze. As always O walks with the kind of purpose that makes obstacles shatter just at a touch, and it’s only a moment before she’s weaved her way through the worst of the crowd and toward the dark tent where she can smell incense and see just the barest slit of light bleeding over the ground beneath it.

She shoulders her way inside it with little hesitation.

An old, old woman lays reclined against a seat of crimson pillows. Her eyes are bright, foggy silver, her face grizzled with old age, white hairs sprinkle her mane and tail. She is the only one who does not let her gaze linger on O’s third eye for too long, and the girl has to wonder if she is blind or, in fact, all-seeing.

Sit.

Apolonia folds to her knees. The smell of incense chokes her, sinks into every piece of fabric in the tent. Overhead a lamp casts thin golden light onto the scene, and O watches the woman with sharp, bright eyes, expression unwaveringly cool.

What, she asks softly, Is holding me back?

 


Reply
Official Night Account Signos: 3,925
▶ Played by Isra [pm] Posts: 29 — Threads: 19
▶ Agender [They/Them/Theirs] Hth:Atk:Exp:
▶ 3 [Year 500 Spring] Active Magic:
▶ 8 hh Bonded:
#2
A Reading,
The old shed-star barely moves as she watches the three-eyed girl walk into the dark haven of her tent. Her third eye means nothing to the tarot-reader who looks at the stars for her answers and not at girls who walk as boldly as women.

And if she can smell sun and sand on the girl she says nothing about it.

Tonight they all belong to Denocte and to the night.

The smoke dances and tangles together like three dragons as she uses her magic to shuffle the dark and battered deck of cards. One dragon is pale smoke, another dark, and another red. Over and over they tangle above their heads and still the shed-star watches only the girl and the thrum of blood pulsing beneath her skin. She cuts the deck into three piles (one for each eye maybe?) before piling them back into one deck.

The old mare pulls three cards, one above and three below like a small,fragile pyramid. “A clarity spread.” It's all she says before she flips over the card above the row of three.

The card revealed is the 'nine of cups'. The shed-stars smiles then and something about the look on her seems sly and clever and godlike.

Next she flips over the bottom three and from left to right they are revealed to be: the high priestess, the ace of cups and the mother of wands. Her smile turns a little fierce then when shadows pool in the spaces between her teeth, and between her teeth and flesh.

“Nothing.” She says and the three smoke dragons seem to dissolve into the air when she inhales a little deeper (and for a moment it seems as if she has swallowed the three beasts). “Nothing more than perhaps the youthful hope that there is something coming out of the shadows for you. You are the the maker of your own fate and you are not your mother. Take the world, child. It's been waiting for you.”

Darkness descends then and all the candles seem to snuff out at the exact same moment. The ruby-dusted and dark flaps of the tent snap in a wild wind and it's obvious that the star has no more to say for she's now nothing more than another shadow.

Was she ever there to begin with?

@Apolonia


Reply
Eik — Day Court Outcast Signos: 3,050
▶ Played by Rae [PM] Posts: 233 — Threads: 30
▶ Male [He/Him/His] Hth: 27 — Atk: 33 — Exp: 59
▶ 10 [Year 493 Spring] Active Magic: Telepathy
▶ 15.3 hh Bonded: N/A
#3

-

He feels small and plain against the magnificence of this night, even when tiny dancers float past and his scars gleam silver and black like strange constellations. Tonight he is content with his perceived smallness, and his definite plainness, because when he closes his eyes and reaches out with his mind he has a universe of his own. It is made of waves of thought and feeling and the quiet magic that hides in every person's heart. In this sea of joy and sorrow and feeling, feeling more raw than he would have thought possible, if he was not granted the eyes to see it-- in this sea there is an island that is cold and dark and untouchable by his magic. His curiosity draws him towards it, as sure as if it were a lighthouse and not a void.

He does not know what exactly he is seeking until he sees it. There, between the bonfires, a tent that almost seems to be hunched forward, hugging itself. It suddenly opens and for some reason (love) he expects Isra to come gliding out, all wrapped in knowing, but instead it is Bexley's daughter. He looks past her to the seer, and past her to the dimly lit tent where all he can see is a deck of cards, a golden bowl, and well-worn cushions of red velvet.

His gaze shifts to meet Apolonia's dead-on. "O," he says, or it might just be a surprised noise. She's probably used to that. When the tent closes behind her a plume of incense fills the air between them-- he wonders idly what it is-- and when it passes it leaves a scent on his skin that will later fill his dreams with questions, as well as the barest suggestion of answers.

Apolonia seems at ease among the smoke and the crowds of beautiful people, just as much as she seems at ease with the dunes at her back and the warm desert wind in her hair. Eik was like that once, always at home as long as he had the skin on his back. He tilts his head, curious of the tent but not enough to go inside. Curious if it was as unsatisfying as he expected. "Did you find any answers?"

E I K
"A thousand dreams within me softly burn. From time to time
my heart is like some oak whose blood runs golden where a branch is torn."

-

art by Pherigo

@Apolonia

Time makes fools of us all


Reply
Apolonia — Day Court Youth Signos: 45
▶ Played by RB [pm] Posts: 34 — Threads: 5
▶ Female [She/Her/Hers] Hth: 10 — Atk: 10 — Exp: 10
▶ 1 [Year 502 Spring] Active Magic: Perception Manipulation
▶ 15.1 hh Bonded: N/A
#4


EVENING CAME ON LIKE A BIG RED WING -
[Image: apolonia_by_erasvita_dcmlqry_by_beccazw-dcnhnsj.png]

O is not as impressed as she should be, maybe. The tent fills with swirling dragons and the choking smell of incense and those wan flickers of red light and sure, her heart picks up speed in her chest, and sure, she watches with an attention so rapt it’s predatory, but - but - she could make these things herself. Little creatures out of smoke, the glass-warped impression of a life. She does it often. Turns a river to an ocean, turns a greeting to an omen. What really impresses her is the dexterity with which the seer shuffles and turns over her cards and the stability of her voice when she says nothing.

Apolonia is not sure she has ever been that kind of knowledgeable, not sure she could stop her voice from wavering if she were holding someone else’s fate in her hands the way this woman does.

It’s over too fast. She does not even remember walking out, does not realize she’s moved at all until she’s standing outside of the tent and the cool, bright air hits her like a gunshot. It smells like jasmine, it stings like burning. All at once her consciousness crashes back into her body with the force of a meteorite. Overhead the sky sparkles with stars, and O feels her heart in throat, thrashing like a caught animal, and if she trembles, the darkness hides it well.

Eik appears like a ghost.

He is marble and cloud-stuff, light against the dimness of Denocte; almost something like relief fills her chest at the sight of him, like she’s come home. It is a wave of letting-go that crashes at her ribs with too much force, the world warping itself to fit the image of someone she recognizes intimately. They know each other too well for not knowing each other at all. All Apolonia’s life she’s seen him at gatherings, wandering the court, speaking in hushed tones, and if she were more superstitious she might count the way his voice sometimes rang in her head when she was a child as doubtlessly true, utterly meaningful. But she isn’t, so she doesn’t.

Eik, she says, and grins, and it is a pure thing, more childlike than almost anything else about her. I did. But who knows if they’re true? O shrugs then, shedding incense and candlelight and mystery as easily as a coat. 

What would you ask?

 


Reply
Eik — Day Court Outcast Signos: 3,050
▶ Played by Rae [PM] Posts: 233 — Threads: 30
▶ Male [He/Him/His] Hth: 27 — Atk: 33 — Exp: 59
▶ 10 [Year 493 Spring] Active Magic: Telepathy
▶ 15.3 hh Bonded: N/A
#5

-

"Eik," Her voice rumbles like a panther and oh, that grin of hers could charm a snake. He's been fond of Apolonia from way back when she was adrift in her mother's sun-kissed belly. "She's special" he had said to Bexley the first time they met (she wouldn't remember that, would she?) and it's still true. He always felt proud that she was raised Solterran. It was maybe a foregone conclusion, her mother being Bexley Briar, but he always thought the girl could be lost to Night so, so easily. (He himself could be lost to Night, and that knowledge feels like a stone in his chest.)

"Who knows," he agrees, almost mournfully.

"I wouldn't ask anything. You can do that right? Get an answer for a question that was not asked? " He doesn't have words for all his questions anyway, at least he doesn't have the right ones. It seems to him that there is meaning lost whenever thoughts are forced into words. It doesn't seem to happen when Asterion speaks, or Seraphina, or maybe they just don't let it show. But most every time Eik opens his mouth, the words come out not-quite-right. Not horribly wrong, just... not perfect. It's just something he's gotten used to, otherwise he'd go insane.

Anyway, he figures that the answer would be not-quite right if the question was not-quite right. But of course, he isn't really sure how it all works. If he were with Isra he could believe in anything, but he's not and the tent reminds him of something he saw earlier in the evening. In the marketplace there was a tent selling "Solterran steel swords." This was not something of terrible interest to him, being a brawler of body and not weaponry, but the incredible prices drew him in. Upon closer inspection they were just some cheap knockoff smithwork (not even signed!) with beautifully worked wooden handles to fool the ignorant. The tent with its cards and its promises seems not so different than that smithy's tent-- which is, to say, a scam.

(He does not face the fact that the tent is the one place in all of Denocte that his magic cannot reach. This is something he'll ponder later, when the field is just an empty field again and it is too late to investigate.)

"Quite the party, huh." Maybe he's already run out of interesting things to say, or maybe he's just still scrambling to comprehend all the beauty and all the mystery at play tonight.


E I K
"A thousand dreams within me softly burn. From time to time
my heart is like some oak whose blood runs golden where a branch is torn."

-

art by Pherigo

@Apolonia

Time makes fools of us all


Reply
Apolonia — Day Court Youth Signos: 45
▶ Played by RB [pm] Posts: 34 — Threads: 5
▶ Female [She/Her/Hers] Hth: 10 — Atk: 10 — Exp: 10
▶ 1 [Year 502 Spring] Active Magic: Perception Manipulation
▶ 15.1 hh Bonded: N/A
#6


EVENING CAME ON LIKE A BIG RED WING -
[Image: apolonia_by_erasvita_dcmlqry_by_beccazw-dcnhnsj.png]

She is not quite sure why Eik’s question surprises her. She should know better than to expect that he, of all people, would take something so occult with anything less than a grain of salt. But she is still off-guard enough to blink as he asks it, and to answer, a moment later, with the whole, raw truth and not some half-gold lie - I’m not sure, she says, strangely serious, and frowns a little. Her eyebrows knit slightly. Something trembles a little in her chest, feral and uncertain.

But O, like anyone, wants to believe, and so she remedies it a moment later with a little smile and a jaunty kind of rebuttal. If she’s the real deal, I’m sure she could figure it out. I guess finding out is up to you. 

Easy as ever she steps forward, bumps her lips against Eik’s cheek like a young girl might kiss her uncle. She does, more often than not, think of him as family,the same way she sees Seraphina as a long-lost relative on a dusty family tree. He is a fixture in her life as much as the dunes of Solterra and the omnipresence of the weapon at her hip and the searing pain of looking at something with that third eye, when she has to - a regularity she has grown up with and become, maybe, attached to.

I guess so, she says. Over Eik’s shoulder, the rest of Denocte unfolds like a well-weathered map, sprouting mountains and lakes, and huge forests strung with burning light, and soft-wailing music that digs its way, like a gnat, into every nook and cranny. What have you seen? O is not sure she’s seen anything like it before.

Then again, she hasn’t really seen much.


 


Reply
Eik — Day Court Outcast Signos: 3,050
▶ Played by Rae [PM] Posts: 233 — Threads: 30
▶ Male [He/Him/His] Hth: 27 — Atk: 33 — Exp: 59
▶ 10 [Year 493 Spring] Active Magic: Telepathy
▶ 15.3 hh Bonded: N/A
#7

-

Her words ring true.

"I guess finding out is up to you."

Still, he does not want to find out.

It isn't that he doesn't believe truth can be found in the strange-smelling tent, and it isn't that he couldn't use a little guidance. It's just... there is something, something rebellious or angry or whatever you wish to call it, something that hides beneath his easygoing demeanor, and it itches to think there is such thing as divine counsel. It would mean there is such thing as a right choice. It would justify his cloying fear that every choice he makes is the wrong one.

Anyway, in his mind it seems that prophecy is just another face of the gods, and if there's one thing he is sure of it is that you cannot trust a god. But she kisses his cheek and he puts aside his unanswerable questions. Even he tires of brooding sometimes.

What did he see? "In one room of the court, fish swam through air like water. You can walk across the floor of the lake now, and on the hilltop there was a tree with leaves of glass that sang when the wind blew through..." This last one was a personal gesture, a sight he felt was for him and him alone, and he trails off as the heat rises in his voice. He wonders if he will always ache at the thought of Isra.

"Where are you headed next?" He shouldn't feel like he needs to protect the girl with the hurlbat and the gunpowder eyes, but her parents are nowhere in sight and the night grows wilder and wilder around them and he just can't help himself.

E I K
"A thousand dreams within me softly burn. From time to time
my heart is like some oak whose blood runs golden where a branch is torn."

-

art by Pherigo

goodness I love @Apolonia :3 let's wrap this up soon?

Time makes fools of us all


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