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Csl last won the day on September 15

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About Csl

  • Rank
    Jar of Clay
  • Birthday July 3

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    Pearl of the Orient Seas
  • Interests
    digital art, science and sci-fi, in-depth world-building, unconventional fantasy tropes, character-driven plots, lateral thinking puzzles, meta stuff
  • Occupation
    College student

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  1. I attempted Inktober (very inconsistently) while exclusively drawing subjects from Valucre. Mostly my characters or characters/lore I'm familiar with. If you guys have any suggestions/requests for the following days (or any days I haven't drawn for), feel free to suggest! No promises, but I really need ideas and don't want to exclusively draw my own characters/lore. Here's the prompt list My progress so far! Day 2: Mindless My take on an Enrele. Day 4: Freeze A C'zirqonian artifact-hunter in full armor. One hand's holding an antarcticite dagger that can freeze all it touches, another is a diaschismic portal generator. From this thread. Day 5: Build A Flesh-Shaper from Ilumad creating a new face. Specifically, the hands belong to Elias. Day 8: Frail Pluto Hildebrand, seneschal of House Hildebrand. A boy of porcelain skin, prone to shattering. Gold runs in his veins. Character by @SweetCyanide Day 12: Dragon It's not a dragon but it's the seven-headed hydra from Taen's first big event thread. Day 16: Wild One of my characters, Cassandra Sieversal.
  2. Pallas welcomed the distraction of reality breaking down. From the top of a glass skyscraper, Pallas cocked an ear at the sound of waves crashing. He took a breath and tasted salt. He turned to his correspondent - once one of the benefactors of Khartes' privately-funded projects - and found him to be a porpoise. This was a surprising, albeit pleasant change. The man was a rare combination of idiocy, arrogance, and wealth, culminating in a creature who thought he could bully (or bribe) the prince of Taen into allowing him a commercial advantage in a new communications system. Pallas looked at the man, who was no longer a man, for one long moment. He stood from his seat. "While I've enjoyed our talk," - he lied, having long wished for an excuse to escape the man's blathering - "Something more important than the -" he suppressed a sigh "- advertising opportunities of this project has come up." The porpoise chattered. Pallas directed a sagely nod towards it. "Of course. You may forward any further inquiries to Caer Loerem." As practical as it would be to simply drop his body into the Wetlands and absorb his assets into the government... it was wrong. It wouldn't be noble, or righteous, or humane, and those were things Pallas liked to concern himself with being, these days. Empathy was easy. Ethics was another matter, especially when the practice of them concerned individuals who, for lack of a better term, were leeches. Pallas put a hand against the glass door and found it a beaded curtain, cords strung with conch and abalone. Pretty. He brushed it aside. A step forward, and the tower had turned into a lighthouse- the walls melting away into mist and sea spray, stone steps spiraling down the exterior, carved smooth by the knife of the wind. Something was different. Not wrong- no, the nature of Taen itself meant that wrong held no meaning here. Something was different, and as Pallas strode down the stairs, he pushed aside the kingdom's other concerns, focusing on the task at hand. Leaning over the rail, Pallas squinted at the festivities below. He blinked hard. Currents and tides. The disturbance washed over the city, submerging it, distorting the glittering buildings as the waves bent light. A movement by a tavern caught his attention; the the surf rippled in the wake of a figure. Golden eyes watched as the figure boarded a galleon, departing from the harbor. Ebb and flow. It wasn't changing the city, not exactly. While worldrift tore at the fabric of being, this festival was a vision. A ship's shadow, fleeting, over the sunlit shallows. Something from the land, something that was of the land, not against it- another one of the hundred oddities that dipped its fingers into Taen, casting ripples into the stillness. That flicker of understanding was a comfort. Pallas took a deep breath, savoring the taste of the ocean. There was something pleasantly familiar about all this. Perhaps he'd spent too much time indoors, that the sight of a sea-that-was-not-meant-to-be was exciting. Perhaps he felt more at home here, in the space where the veil thinned and the abyss yawned in his periphery. The prince spread his wings and dove down towards the lighthouse. Minutes later, he entered the tavern that the figure had left. Faced with a slug-faced bartender and the masked man, Pallas decided to address the masked figure first. He opened his mouth, then felt a memory click into place. He'd heard of this before. A group of ditch-diggers. Flood warnings. A monstrous spine in the Wetlands. The Coiled Serpent. He swept his gaze over the man. Cult member or not, the fellow seemed to be in a sorry state. Folding his wings, Pallas slid into the seat next to the stranger. He tilted his head. "You alright, man?"
  3. sure! also I forgot it has its bestiary. I'll link it in either the main lore article or the bestiary article =D
  4. Made a Taen Materials List. Included Lazurum and your airship as an example!
  5. Csl

    Taen Materials List

    Natural Lazurum - term widely-used to refer to mineral naturally imbued with worldrift arcana. Lazurum has a dark blue color and often resists the laws of physics, though the wide variation in its effects prevents it from being used reliably. While knowledge of its nature and application remains limited, an airship from Hydra's Haven has successfully prototyped an antigravity system using Lazurum. Manufactured Cottawood - a wildlight-engineered tree variant widely used for building construction. Cottawood structures are visually identical to brownstone and can be sculpted without branches or leaves. Widely used in buildings in Lunaris and can easily integrate plumbing and illumination. Lucental glass - glass doped with a transparent, chemosynthetic fungi that filters out swamp miasma and absorbs solar energy. The glass is produced from the Wetlands’ lakebed silt and prominently used in Arcturon's architecture.
  6. PSA: Valucre has an art club! --> https://www.valucre.com/clubs/25-art-club/

    It's a good place specifically for tthe more visual side of the rp hobby. Feel free to flaunt & flex art, post tutorials, or if you're an artist yourself, post commissions. Coding templates/galleries would also be very neat and I'd highly encourage it, because profile and lore layouts are also art.

    I've moved my art thread and the HTML coding tutorial over there. You can do the same with your existing art showcases by reporting and requesting it to be moved.

  7. Slight bump (since this is an open thread! come on in!) and also query- Anyone with a character not waiting on someone else's reply that would be interested in interacting with one of mine? She's a foreigner to UM and visiting for vacation. Profile will likely be up by this weekend :^D I might also bring in one of the Paralios twins if schoolwork isn't too heavy this week.
  8. it's perf, thanks! This can be canonized now. Blood magic 👀 F to Gore. Thanks!
  9. @amenities by the way, what could realistically be learned about Gore since he's been captured? Is he one of Cain's risen dead puppets? If he dies does the black goo shrivel away, are the slugs a unique type of creature created specifically for the puppeteering? edit: also, is the puppet a Taen native or is he some dude from outside Taen brought into Taen?
  10. Koru finds himself in a kitchen. He checks drawers and finds nothing but rusty cutlery. He moves onward, nearly trips as his next step finds the floor in the next room a few inches lower. It is dark; Koru reaches inside the folds of his robe and produces a crystal. At a whispered word, it begins to emit a soft glow. He is in a pantry. A family of rats scatters at the light; another hisses as he opens a cupboard. The man recoils for a moment, then sighs. It is unlikely anything of value is in here, with whatever food long-eaten by the creatures who've made their home in the mansion. Still, he takes his time to check every storage area, finding little intact but sealed cans and bottles then moves deeper into the room. At the far wall, his crystal casts three doorways into light. One illuminates a staircase leading down. One seems to lead to a hallway, more doorways yawning into darkness. Yet another leads into another storage area- a winery, if the glint of glass bottles is any indication. Koru moves closer to the first one, allowing the crystal to illuminate more details: a frayed rug, a broken coat rack, a line of shoes. Close as it is to the kitchen, this wing of the mansion appears to have belonged to the servants. It is different from Kasnivale - he has only been to the city once, but he knows his beneficiaries do not keep servants. In the place of men and women, the lords and ladies had beings of light and stone to serve them. Such a wondrous sight it was, yet so strange, that he had never tried to return. He is better suited to the life of a wanderer, he and his daughter.
  11. Sinjari makes her way upstairs. The floorboards creak underfoot. She enters the first door and finds it a wardrobe, stuffed with dust and moth-eaten coats. She enters the second and finds herself in a bedroom. Rune hasn't offered to elaborate what they are looking for. Koru hasn't offered any guidance either. For a moment, Sinjari stands in the doorway, unsure, then pads over to the drawers. She finds nothing but moldy fabric, old tins and dusty bottles. The mirror is intact. She traces a face in the dust, smiles, and moves on. Nothing in the closets. Nothing under the bed. Out of curiosity, she knocks on the walls. Solid wood, though one of the boards has rotted enough to crack under her fist. One of the paintings rattle. Sinjari looks up, squints. Beneath the dust lies a portrait of a couple. They are dead now, Sinjari thinks, staring at their frozen smiles. The girl moves onward, checking two more bedrooms. Each are as richly-furnished as the first, with canopy beds draped with once-rich cloths and elaborately-carved drawers. She wonders about the necessity of so many possessions. She and Koru carry what they need. How strange and sad for such large rooms to lie empty, fading away into dust. She finds a necklace with a simple crystal pendant. It seems unlikely what they could be searching for is mere jewelry, but the girl loops it around her wrist. It matches her arm. On the dust of every mirror she passes, she draws a simple face - two dots, a straight line. A way of marking her progress, yes, but also for the small pleasure it brings her. There are more paintings in the rooms depicting the dead man and woman. In the last room hangs the largest painting - one that nearly takes up the whole wall. There is a third person now, though. Sinjari furrows her brows. It is difficult to make out their features, but the dead man sits on a chair, the dead woman stands behind him, and beside him-- a new figure. A brother? Strange, but likely not what they are looking for. The girl continues pulling out the drawers and opening closet doors.
  12. Posted! I probably put more effort (and words) into that post than was necessary. But it's been a while since I've had this much fun writing something! Tell me if I got the timings off, but aside from Pallas arriving and officially capturing Gore, nothing that impacts things as they stand as of the last round. yay for citizen journalism
  13. -90:00 Lunaris was no stranger to crime. It was unavoidable, with a city the size it was and its citizens being who they were. War refuge the metropolis was, but even it had its rough edges, the dark corners where drug trade flourished and the greed of few pressed many into desperation and violence. To many, blatant disruption of public order was rare. The occasional scuffle was prone to escalating into a gunfight, but most people knew better than to disturb the peace. The trees had eyes. The birds sang every secret. Every faceless stranger could be the queen's hands and feet, quietly watching, ready to snuff out any threat to the sanctuary Taen offered. This was why, when the bar exploded, Simon Novace did not yet panic. He worried, just a little bit, as he watched the Twine reports filter in, as the radio guy (Mark, or Matthias, he couldn't remember) radioed the announcement to the constabulary. A lucentglass panel covered one wall of their office, overlaying a grid of thread-thin vines twisted into a perfect model of Lunaris’ Twine network. Points of light pulsed on the lines as messages entered the network. Just an isolated incident, Simon thought, leaning forward, fumbling for his twine transceiver beneath the mounds of paper on his desk. His fingers found the coil. A vastness yawned open at the back of his mind's eye. Simon began poring through the messages -visual snapshots of the explosion, long-winded accounts of the event, frantic lost-person reports. The Lunaris Telecommunications office wasn't a great institution, not like the City Guard or the medical center. Their office consisted of seven telepaths at seven desks. Simon's scope was the Banyan district. The othets monitored various areas in Lunaris, sifting past the job searches and invitations, sorting messages, keeping an eye on the crime reports, warnings, and assemblies, the minutae of the city's activities. Turns out people were more than willing to keep themselves under surveillance if it came in the form of gossip and helpful community conversation. the fire is obviously a cover-up for another one of the governor's mistakes. Down with Heiliger! Mostly gossip. Simon stitched together a chronological account of the incident, then pieced together the memories the witnesses had twined as a composite image of the scene of crime. The constabulary would need all the data they could get to supplement witness accounts and track down the arsonists. -75:00 In the wake of the explosion, the cityfolk sprung into action. Minutes after the fire began, a plumber began rerouting the pipelines in a nearby cottawood building. The orange glow suffused his arms as he, perched on a second-story balcony, crafted a crude hose from the exterior piping, directing the spray of sticky, saplike liquid at the bar. A trio of women dropped their groceries and ran to a nearby hydroponic restaurant. One broke the tiered tanks free from their scaffolding; the two others muttered a spell, sending the wall of soupy liquid cascading against the side of the bar. The fire smoldered, kept at bay. The handful of passerby who'd taken the wildlight first-aid classes offered by the health center began tending to the injured. A man drew strings of energy from his horse and into a badly-burned woman, light bleeding into her veins. Weakened, the horse stumbled to its knees, but the woman cried in relief as her skin knits together. A few minutes later the constabulary arrived, trailed by a handful of medics and a stern-faced trio from the City Guard. Simon watched the reportage of the events as he waited for his coffee to cool. Isolated incident. Nothing to worry about. -60:00 A smattering of lights burned on the lucentglass twine map- the residential area some distance from the Banyan. Simon reconnected to the network, scanned the reports, then frowned. "Radio the constables," he called over his shoulder to the radio comm guy (Mark? Matthias?). "Gunshots between Corona and Laminary" "Think it's the same guys?" asked Mark (or Matthias?) "Maybe. Maybe not. Better safe than sorry." The minutes dragged by. No further reports of crime. Simon began to relax as the Twine monitor resumed its normal activity. Then, a radio crackled to life, the tinny voice of a constable breaking the silence. A murder. Simon took a deep breath, exhaling slowly through his nose. He pinched the bridge of his nose, taking a moment to collect himself. Please be a coincidence. "D'you think we should send out a public warning?" asked the woman at the desk next to his. Aster. "The prince said-" "We wait," Simon interrupted, "Until we get instructions from the constables." He stared at the Twine monitor. "Or something else happens." He stood to refill his coffee. -30:00 “Gunshots at a pharmacy,” Aster called out. Her eyes were closed, her lips set in a thin line. The office looked at her, waiting anxiously. She shook her head. “Nothin’ else. Shop’s far from the housing places. One of the shadier areas. Folks there ain’t likely to Twine crime, most bein’ criminals themselves. This one’s from a nosy old lady.” Matthias was fiddling with his transceiver. “I’ll forward it to the police anyway.” Aster nodded. The room returned to its tense silence. Simon sipped at his coffee. -15:00 The screen around the Silverbrush bank bloomed with reports. "Bank robbery!" Julius sat with one hand on her transceiver, another on a lucentglass plate, projecting the reports of the event as they occured. Matthias stood over her shoulder, muttering into the radio transceiver. Aster gave Simon a look. He groaned. The other five telepaths waited anxiously as Simon dug into his desk drawer, producing a black spinner ring. It seemed to be made from a clear resin, but tightly-packed within, was a thick band of ink-black feathers. Simon sent a short prayer to Gaia, slid it onto his finger, and turned the outer ring. A new consciousness slipped into his mind. Simon swallowed. "Y-your highness?" Yes? I'm from the Lunaris Communications office. You've asked us to inform you of any... er... acts of terrorism? Silence. Assent. The telepathic equivalent of a nod. Simon hurried to continue. "There was an explosion at the Banyan market thirty minutes ago. A man was murdered in a nearby alley short while after. And after that… someone reported gunshots in a small pharmacy. Now, someone's holding up the Silverbush Bank." A pause. There’s been four already? The voice, silent and toneless as it was, felt accusatory. Simon began to form an excuse, but found himself silenced. Never mind. We really need to automate your job. Thanks for telling me. Broadcast a warning in the district. Tell everyone to stay indoors. I assume law enforcement is en route? "Yes, your highness." Simon made a gesture at his coworkers. They got to work, returning to their desks to beam a high-priority Twine announcement across the Silverbrush district. In a moment of brazenness, Simon dared to ask the question. "D-do you think it's the sheriff-killers?" It had been a few months, but the memory was fresh. It was one thing to face beasts from beyond their city borders. Another to have one of their own murdered within their walls. We’ll see, said the voice on the other end of the ring. Keep an eye on what happens. The presence faded. Simon turned the ring back and tore it off his hand. “It’s so creepy talking to him,” he muttered. “Having him in my head.” From a radio in the next room, the crisp voice of Oliver Oxenfree came to a halt. “I’d like to interrupt this broadcast for a moment to address our Lunaris listeners, of particular- those in the Silverbush district. Listen well to this announcement! Stay inside your homes! Shut your doors and close the windows, leave the main streets. There’s dangers roaming your streets, says our sources. Nothing your dear governor can’t handle, I’m sure - and most assuredly no challenge to Caer Loerem! All the same, be vigilant, Taen. Be vigilant.” -10:00 Nobody paid attention to the starlings. They were just small birds, after all, often found flitting over the city. Common as pigeons, though more intelligent, and more of a nuisance, with their fondness of stealing food of shiny things. There was something strange with their eyes, though, a bright orange that stood out against their dark feathers. As everything in Taen, they always seemed to be watching. Several came to perch on the stone pillars of the Silverbush bank after the first gunshots echoed in the building. One fluttered over to a windowsill, eyeing the interior with great interest. One squawked as the Governor appeared. Three flitted away as the carriage began hurtling away from the street, presumably startled by the chaos. Another pair began squabbling as law enforcement arrived. One in particular seemed to take interest in the proceedings, watching the constables began erecting barriers around the dead and interviewing the witnesses. There would be a vierescent among the respondents, one who could lift images from the minds of the witnesses using wildlight as a channel - faces, voices, the height and build of the robbers. All necessary information, all helpful in identifying the suspects. One bird left its perch, daring to alight on a railing next to a sobbing woman. She didn’t seem to notice “- blood running down half of his face!” The bird hopped into the air, fluttering to another witness- a scowling young man with a death glare set on the constables before him. “... was sumthin’ wrong with them, I keep tellin ya. Its eyes moved all wrong, like they weren’t together. Monsters, I tell ya- them dark things from Argentspire finally sneakin’ into our cities..." The bird chirruped, a sound eerily similar to laughter, and took to the skies. 00:00 A single starling circled the broken carriage. It watched Adime streak away as one of its brethren took chase - then pull up, losing track of the creature. It watched the web of wildlight pulsing around Sebastian, the few filaments of magic glowing weakly. It watched personnel from the medical center began to arrive, faces hidden with air filtration masks- created for the Wetlands’ miasma, equally effective in preventing cyanide poisoning through inhalation. Once it finished counting the dead, the starling dove down towards the front of the carriage. Sebastian would hear footsteps behind him. A moment later, Pallas Paralios stood beside the governor, tightening the bands of another filtration mask behind his head. “I’ll take over.” The prince’s voice was muffled behind his mask. He moved with an air of… not exactly purpose, but the air of a man much-accustomed to things falling apart and having to put them back together. Pallas reached out in the direction of the horses. The already-injured creatures fell limp. The air trembled as Pallas clenched his fist, drew his hand to his chest, then pushed his palm outwards. The strings between Sebastian and the dying citizens pulsed, reinvigorated. Pivoting on his heel, Pallas turned his attention onto Gore. No strings of wildlight bound the creature together, not that he could sense. His brow furrowed. “Not from around here,” he muttered to nobody in particular. He held up a pair of forceps, gingerly picking up one of the slugs. A moment later, the forceps were gone - slug and all. Satisfied, Pallas stepped back. There was a sound like a singing wineglass, silenced. Light bent subtly around the bloodied creature as a spatial barrier enclosed him, cutting off the edges of the wood impaled in his chest. He turned one of the black rings on his hand. “Apothecary? Send more personnel to the Silverbush district. You’ll need to set up a temp clinic. A hundred or so cases of gas poisoning. No, I don’t know what it is yet, but it’s lighter than air and dissipating already.” He turned another. “Novace. Get in touch with the KMed people. Twine out their instructions for this kind of gas poisoning.” Pallas finally laid his eyes on the governor. “Fine mess we’re in, hm?” He cocked his head, studying the man for a moment. “You’re the one dad appointed, weren’t you?” he finally said. There was a note of wistfulness in his voice. "Yeah..." Sebastian said awkwardly, "Your father was a good man." Pallas looked like he wanted to say something, but seemed to change his mind. “Mhm.” He stuck a hand in his pocket. “I don’t like bureaucracy. I’d rather deal directly with your people when it comes to. But you’ll need one of these.” He tossed a black ring towards the man. “Direct link to me.” Sebastian caught the ring and nodded, "Much obliged." Pallas looked in the direction the other man had gone. “If these things are what I fear they are... I’m going to have to make changes to....” he waved vaguely. “The cities. Security. Military. You have a right to know that. Probably.” Pallas turned another ring. “Progress on the Faux-Tons?” A moment later, he sighed. “Fine. I’ll ask him.” A few minutes later, a truck bearing the Khartes sigil drove up. Pallas watched as the men loaded Gore’s barely-alive form onto the vehicle. A middle-aged man holding a container came up to the prince; Pallas took the empty box. He returned it with the slug and forceps inside. He turned back to Sebastian. “Forward all autopsy reports your men get to Khartes. Some from Coeus might show up later.” The prince rolled a shoulder, unfolding a pair of dark wings.”And get a new sheriff, please. It’s been long enough and your cosntabulary's in sore need of delegation.” "Yeah, that's sort of the problem," Sebastian replied, "We've gone through a number of sheriffs, and all of them are dead or missing in action. But I have a plan. I'll send you the specifics." Suddenly, Pallas laughed. “Gone through a number- hah!.” He shook his head, eyes shining. “This land is so damned cursed. Vitality and lethality. A place of paradoxes.” He chuckled again. “Man, be glad you’re only dealing with this city. As a whole? It’s wild, I tell you.” The whispers of the onlookers reached his ears. Pallas glanced at the medical personnel, up at the ones shuttered in the buildings, and nodded. A single starling took flight, leaving the city behind.
  14. Star Wars. I watched ep 4 but that's it. :')
  15. Csl

    General chat thread

    that theory's also v v cool but the one I'm referring to is Craig's constitutive view of communication. The constitutive view can be used as a metamodel, as an overarching theory under which comm theories fall under (to take the magic system:comm model theory further, universal laws of magic lol) A neat example of the consti view of comm is the communicative constitution of organizations. Basically it states that communication is the thing that constructs organizations and organizational structures. Like a certain IC meeting on a certain medieval archipelago that resulted in a new government structure 👀 All of this just drives in the point that the pen is mightier than the sword. Also bc personally, delivering sick burns is more interesting than stabbing someone. There was also an interesting reading on how metaphors are an important aspect of how we view reality. The same reading had the phrase "Construct your own reality to see" which is way more metal than a comm theory textbook has any right to be /ok stopping nerding out for real
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