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[Nymeria] About Damn Time (The Return of a King)

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Amaya's eyes followed the creature when one of the women was to paint him. What a canvas. Her eyes sparkled momentarily, following the movement of the brush when the woman painted his body. Her mind then wandered to The Dance of Dialogues; how they in every motion would tell a tale of the past, of caution, a reminder of their strength and weaknesses. She compared this tale to the scenery that was playing out before her; a Nymerian painting a Naga, preparing him to meet with their king. It pulled slightly in the corners of her mouth. She knew not much of wars or strives from experience, but if what she was seeing was not the very image of hope - then she did not know what it was.

She spun around, humming lightly to herself. The scarves that she had picked out for later complimented the shades that made the Lion Fish on her upper body seem alive. She did not put on the scarves yet, but put them away to quickly and easily being able to find them. The stage was just about set; lifting the heavy things was mainly left to the men who were stronger than the women. Noticing that some of the others had begun warming up, stretching, spinning, some even dancing for final rehearsing, Amaya concluded that they were just about finished. A cheerful melody was clinging through the air, and soon others joined in. Amaya hummed along, mostly to herself. She swept her hair to the side to avoid sitting on it, then sat on the ground and ran her hands across her legs, first massaging them to properly get the blood flowing, then wiggling her toes, bending her knees. Though she did have full movement in her legs when she shifted from tail, it took a while for her to have full reactiveness; and staggering a bit simply would not do in the dances. 

Maybe I shifted too late, she thought, frowning a bit with worry while slowly spinning her ankles around. It felt like her legs were a bit... asleep. She sighed and continued the massage. Hopefully she had time to regain the feeling of complete responsiveness. 

Oh, May, sometimes you just don't think ahead. 

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@Deus Ex Aizen@Howlykin

He fought the rising blush to his cheeks, as a swell of different emotions rose within him. She always did this, tease, taunt, and compliment all at once. If he had been younger, more head strong, he would have been insulted. Urzix was not blinded by youth, he knew this was simply her way. He felt a bit awkward given how close she was, the lack of care for personal space. “Usually bandaging is redundant, this time I overestimated by body.” He said, a touch of humility to his voice. A thing he rarely showed.

“You know such is not in my nature. I have a duty to carry my burdens in dignified silence.” He said, mimicking the words of his father who still slumbered in stasis. Words he knew only from Rxychra’s and Rahab’s stories they entertained him with as a child. He offered her a genuine smile, golden eyes admiring the now pouting lips. Rahab had always went to great lengths to make him feel like family. To make him feel he belonged amongst them. She had become dear to him.

He sighed, a slight expression of hurt touching his features. He knew, by the harshness of her words, that they had been born of her worry. “My apologies.” He stated, his voice low with shame. He shifted slightly as she leaned close to examine the wound. It was a clean cut, though it was deep. He was uncomfortable with her so close to him, despite the necessity of it. Like all men he felt the stirrings brought on by the closeness of her, the sweet scent she gave off. He shook his head, crushing down such thoughts and desires.

He watched quietly as she set about cleaning his wound, intrigued by her skill with hydrokinesis. He had no doubt she could wield it as effectively as any weapon, what was more impressive was the gentleness of it. The young Srax’throgar had spent his training into forging himself into a weapon, foregoing such gentle applications of Nymerian Magic. He thought himself a blade, a weapon to be wielded for the benefit of Nymeria. He had no complaints of Rahab requesting his skill in her designs, he had no complaints. She used him to great skill an effect, perhaps even better than her brothers.

He winced only slightly as she cleaned the bloid away and packed the wound. Many might not have handled it better, but much of the credit belonged to Rahab's gentle hands. She was a skilled healer, perhaps not in the way Juni was, but the Alrandwe princess had her own fashion to doing things. Perhaps when there was more time, he would request she teach him a bit about field dressing wound. He had learned today that even his body had limits. It was a good lesson.

When she finished, he straightened his clothing back into impeccable neatness. Though many preferred to wear less, or none at all, he was much akin to his father, in that he always dressed in an imperial fashion. Ever the illusion of being a soft noble or merchant's son. It often worked on those not outright familiar with who and what he was. Satisfied, he settled his gaze back on Rahab as she looked up at him.

Urzix smiled softly and cupped her face in his hands. “I am sorry for being so prideful. I will rely more on others.” He said, his voice soft and low, a hint of amusement in his voice. “Forgive my foolishness, Moon of my life.” He said, placing a gentle kiss on her forehead. He released her and turned away, more to hide the longing in his eyes and the rush of heat on his cheeks. “I will deliver a detailed report to you after the Craek negotiations.” He said, his voice all business once more. He would of course tell them if his victory, yet make sure they knew he was but the blade and she the hand the wielded him.

With that he made his leave as per her command. Once outside her chamber doors, and with them closed firmly behind him, he took a calming breath. Once his composure had returned he made his way way through the palace halls, his movements even and precise, having all the grace of a dancer. From the ruckus outside, the cheering and singing, the King on the Waves had returned. By the time Xaprychor found himself out of the main gates, Urzix would be exiting from them though a different path. “Ah, your majesty.” He greeted, bowing low in respect.

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“How long has it been since our lords return?”

“I’ve lost count, It seems like it has been forever.

Trexasle kept his silence, while his fellow soldiers made their way into the quarters, the kept the conversation about the now returning leader. That wasn’t what he was focused on, as far as he was concerned. The job itself was something that he couldn’t wait for, surely, they weren’t just going to be standing around and fucking about like these men were already doing. This was his chance to prove himself to everyone and make sure his family name was respected all throughout these waters. So, as he and a select few other soldiers made their way to the throne room to present themselves to their King, Trexasle did not feel nervous.

At least no more than he usually did when it came to high profile events, he felt more excited. The fame of his family name was certainly something he needed to protect especially as a one of his own family history, he was a warrior and it was about damn time he got deployed and into the royal guard no less? Screw nervous? The boy was damn there excited. Which was cause for his fellow soldiers attempt to speak with him.


“Hey Trexasle, your family has worked with the royal family before? How was it?”

Trexasle turned around and gave them a shrug. “Can’t say, A few like it, but most of my family end up dead on the battlefield.” That was normally how it was for a soldier right? Die for the land that you live, regardless of the choice therein. His fellow soldier only blinked, but continued to follow him, not that they had a choice, they have, like Trexasle resigned themselves to the fate of the soldier and they must ride it out.


It was about damn time to meet the king.

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iPOkA4T.png@The Hound @TheWilySpookster @Al Sa-her @Maveranne

The kiss had been a welcome seal to his coming home. To some it would appear that their intimacy was more than what they usually let on; the rumours were always hot when it came to the two, and often enough they were never fought against. Juni could deny all the hubbub, but what use would that do? It would appear that she's only being vehement to keep the false secret a secret - that's not it at all. She knows there is a heaviness on Rxychra's heart that none can lift, and it is not a game to her, this lifting of his grievances. Juni respects him and he in turn does the same to her. Connected at the heart and the very soul, the rumours do not matter. 

When he had touched her arm, she assaulted him with a smile that reached the very shores high above their heads. The happiness she felt could melt the sun itself; seeing him here, before her like he has never left, it made her breathless. He was the same in appearance, all with his fantastic hair kissed by the oceans themselves; the silver eyes that have seen so much, some things they wish to have never seen ever; his body, his voice, and his heart still all together in their glory.

With his appearance, his haughtiness hadn't changed whatsoever. When he saw Shcxay in his condition and wear, he reacted as she would expect him to. The boy he once knew was no longer there, replaced by a man that's also been brought to his knees. The look in Shcxay's eyes could be described as a wounded animal stuck in a trap; a visage full of pain and desperation for help, but could he trust the hand coming towards him? While she may not be as close to most of the men and women in Nymeria as she is with Rxy, she does try to offer seeds of wisdom and care to the suffering. Shcxay often heard her babble on and on about his condition, which would earn her a hard look, though often unperturbed she did not mind. 

Her tent had become smaller and smaller by the minute. First it was Rxy, sneaking through and resting as he often did; then Shcxay who was more than likely paying her visit for his pain, something she wished to ease; and lastly, Uri! Her voice had been silent, but her eyes yelled his name. If it hadn't been for the prescense of Rxy, she would have smothered the red-head with a hug and an entourage of names he often hates: Uri, Puri, UriUri, so forth. Captured again in the King's hold, she was left to give Uri a look of apology, knowing that she wouldn't be able to greet him appropriatly.

"You're a boy! Silly games and mischief!"

She exclaimed, clearly pleased that her King is not only home, but in a fair mood. 

Juni was thrown upon his shoulder as if she were nothing but a feather. Comfortable, she looked over at Uri and Shcxay from atop her pedastal, this time apologizing to them both with a brief smile before she was torn away from them. 

"I agree! You wouldn't be saying these words if you'd only come home once in a few millenniums, you know. I've missed you too much; you're lucky I was able to recognize you, but your sour brow is nearly impossible to forget."

The gate was in view and she felt herself become heavy with uncertainty. Beyond those beautiful fixtures she will lose a bit of Rxy, as he must play this game of faces or fear losing. 

"I see myself nowhere else but at your side, dearest Soul. I am an unfortunate fixture to your person."

Her words wouold reach him, to his blood and to his soul, he would feel lher meaning. Never would she abandon him and never would she work against him - he is her King. Too much has happened between them for her to tarnish their friendship and she is not the sort to work in the shadows - unlike some. Everyone has their enemies, and she's positive that both Kings have their fair share. 

Then the world stopped. The culmination of surprise and happiness brought everyone into a fervor of emotion. High on her perch she saw what Rxy saw - beautiful faces, beautiful welcomings, and beautiful everything. Her heart ached with pride as she watched men and women fall to their knees before their King. He spoke, and they listened eagerly, as she did. Still on his shoulder, she felt a brief moment of awkwardness, knowing that they bow for him but with her so intimately pressed against the King, she felt that they also bowed to her. Juni has done very little in her exaggerated life to deserve such formalities.

"You're going to work everyone up into a drunk"

So many voices mixed in with the whole commotion of having their King home, Juni was unable to hear much of any conversation. Someone unimportant yelled their King's name, which left her feeling interested for not many were so bold to use his name leisurely (unless they were given permission or welcomed into the fold of friendship). One less friend she's not met? The idea baffled her, while also making her smile mischievously. Oh Rxy, how you like to play. A man of his magnitude, it shouldn't be surprising at all that there will be many, many women calling his name. 

In her search for the yelling woman, Juni was snatched away! Gasping, she felt strong arms encase in her in their hold and pull her away from her King. At first she was ready to strike, but once turned around she caught the intoxicating gaze of her Uri.

"And what have you done for me lately to keep my attention piqued?"

Her arms snaked around his neck, their familiarity blooming before all to see as she did not hit him, but embraced him with welcome. 

Ah, but it is ever so easy to become distracted by the sight of Uri. His hair painted the deepest of reds and his eyes shockingly bright against the canvas of his youthful expressions. There was a dimple on his face, only shown when he smiled, and often enough he smiled around Juni. Selfishly she hoped he wasn't showing off that part of himself to just anyone, but he is eager to his smiles and laughs, so she knows it's an impossible hope. 

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A deviant grunt of displeasure escaped the plush lips of the Man holding the source of such a wretched but eerily pleasing sound. He winced visibly, but grinned at the overall reaction to the woman's gift -- a companion bearing more companions. How would one catch a finer specimen than this? Gifts within a gift! But her words brought him the most joy, even though he knew she'd love the creature. A kiss returned and a rub of noses given before he listened to all she had to say. 

"I knew you would like her." he'd mention before her next statement came about, only for his grin to return in full stride. "I will be sure to return to you after the seeing my Father. He is likely eager to come see you. Perhaps you ought to come out to the ranch and do the dinner with me tonight? We could go out hunting for the meal or visit to the trenches, or some other thing." he'd offer, smiling warmly before turning his head to see Zorval scuttling into view. A hearty chuckle would be drawn out as his somewhat worrisome companion came around, only to eagerly escape the social interaction. One of Q'myha's beast companions followed him off to antagonize and probably neglect the poor octopus, but it was all fine in Q'm's head.. maybe not Zorval's.

Q'myha only nodded to him with a smile before he released Eilwen and let her float freely, a hand gracing the back of her head as the Naga went off to be painted and become of use outside of war. All seemed to be well, and he could not complain about anything. So he did not. 

"I will see you when I return, Eilwen." He'd state, taking the sea cat and her sizable abode and making way. It was good to see her after bouts of responsibilities -- she helped him to unwind in many ways, and he did not feel like sinking into a bloodfrenzy around her, either, which was rather enjoyable to say the least. 

After some time, he'd make it to her quarters with the sea wolves, settling the pregnant sea cat in and introducing her to her own little home and the rest of her roaming space that was Eilwen's residence. He did not find it in him to charm her with magic for anything other than the fact it was best she remain here until either of the two holding her remained. A little rub of the ear-fin was given and responded to with pleased sounds. Q'myha, in the absence of others, released a giddy little squeal of enjoyment in response. Something no one would indulge in hearing. He was quite the soft belly jelly for animals at times, and he let it show in the fact he bore a ranch that was dominantly inhabited by sea creatures, beasts, and the few wholesome monsters he kept around. It was good he lived outside the citadel. Most Nymerians did not particularly enjoy the sight of sea monsters, but Q'm made a habit out of taming them both with and without magic, and if they were present, it'd likely send the people into little frenzies of murderous intent or fear -- neither of which would go well. 

But, onto the truly important things. Q'myha's father was home, and it was high time he went about greeting him and his uncle and cousins and the constituency of the Empire that flooded the Citadel where they could. So he did. With the thought in mind, he left Eilwen's housing and swam off at a high pace, kicking from a platform of glowing water -- a trick he'd grown accustomed to doing with his Water Magic. He found no true rush in it, which explained his lack of thought for using the fins and tail he kept concealed and not readily present on his body. With the kick, he'd be off and whirring through the water like a mighty Great White. 

Soon enough, he'd be among the crowds and following after the scent of his father and easily making his way through the people with his companion beasts. It was a lengthy process, and he was in no rush. A festival was to ensue, and he would be there. He would, however, rush to make it ahead of time, in order to properly greet him outside of a massive school of fishfolk. Q'myha would back channel along all the people and through crowds, never losing the position of his father or his racy cousins. Those two were intriguing in their own rights, and he was one of the few who bore no pity for Shcxay. He only bore pride for him, as his perspective was one of acceptance and glory through survival in life. He wondered if his father would presume the worst for Q'myha not intercepting Pyxiz and his entry, or the fact his nephews found him first, but he laid his mind to rest as he neared the Throne of the Oceans, taking up a place not far off, though secluded enough that civilians could not flood his personal space or the sea wolves'. He remained close enough to the groups as to not express feelings of superiority to his people, but an obvious line was drawn with the personal space afforded. Simply put, he did not wish to be elbowed in the ribs and loins like he'd had happen a few times in other festivals and celebrations. How would he make flop with damaged goods?

Despite all the thoughts in his head he could not think of much else other than awaiting his Kings. A wonderful occasion was to come about... something truly magnificent and generally unseen outside of the defeat of the Trench Barons and the reclamation of the Thrones by the Alrandwe Siblings.

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And now the blossoms fade,
Lost within your dark eyes (I drown within those ebon eyes)
The sweetest tears I taste (glistening upon your lips),
This ichor of your kisses...


Weave thy dark spells,
'neath the bright moon,
Witch-fire is glimmering through
Sunken marble halls.

The Black Gate opens...
Blood sates the Ebon Blade...


Eilwen was content in the crook of her sharkman’s arm, draped against him like finery as her headdress tangled with his braids. Her fingers, delicate and gentle trailed along his visage in affection and delight. IT was no secret the bond between the two, though others were sought often as company as well.

The little Mistress gave a toothy smile, even as she petted the gentle creature within her hold.

“Mmm, I would love to join you.” She pauses as he mentions hunting, and she gasps – leaning forward ever so slightly. “Can we hunt in the forest?” Her gaze glitters with hope and a bit of enchantment. Her infatuation with the thick reeds and dangerous pitfalls of the bone forest had come long before little Paulianna had been pulled from its clutches, but since has grown.

As Q’myha leaves, Eilwen finds herself quickly distracted. Her gaze moves to the large Naga that had joined them, currently his artwork half finished. She moves quickly, plucking the brush from the working woman with a smile. “I will finish, thank you.” She offers. The brush dips into the thick, sludge like paint as she draws it out – finishing the job quite quickly. The man is blessed now, with a mark of the stingray and gentle, rolling paints that accent the curvature of his body. Furthermore, it brings attention to his eyes and natural predatory physique.

“Thank you for tolerating being painted.” The woman smiles, glistening in the dark water as she proclaims him finished. What an honor, to be painted by the Mistress herself. His art is immaculate, perfect and beautiful on his skin. As he moves, the paint also seems to come to life, breathing with Krava as he moves. Eilwen then swims off yet once more to ensure that things are finished.

She finds Amaya on the stage, rubbing life into her legs. Knowing this procedure, Eilwen pauses near her MEretricem, offering a kind smile to the woman.

“Do you need some help?” It is a platonic gesture, never wanting her Meretricem to fail, afterall. Though not just for the sake of keeping up images, but because Eilwen truly does care for each and every one of them. Though she is often busy, she tries desperately to give all of the artists attention as it is needed or simply just because. She feels it very important to their morale. Tenderly, her fingers brush out and she glides them along Amaya’s legs, working life back into the limbs as she focuses on the left, leaving the right for Amaya.

“I noticed you had painted the totem statues in the entryway, they are beautifully done.” She praises.


@Chappu @Tia Dalma

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Off to DutyRynn by Claparo-Sans.deviantart.com on @DeviantArt - Very interesting study of anatomy and lighting.

To the King

It would not due to be late present Q's departure moments before the stingray was done being painted upon his chest. The words that had been spoken earlier were not his to feel jealous about; an outsider among the Kings personal guard was something unspoken. Thus he was somewhat of a threat to those who did not know of him just yet. This sigil symbol would be something to appreciate once he was within the King's presence no doubt. Rising up slowly he gave a small bow to Eilwen in thanks before slithering off in a rush like a bullet out of sight. His eyes were upon the small traces of Q'm's rather odd scent which he had yet to figure out why the latter smelled so weird. Perhaps it was just the scent of shark that rolled in his veins that made him so different to the Naga. 

Yet that did not matter for he soon approached the small procession of Q'm and his flock with ease. They knew he was there for he made no effort to conceal his presence. Once he had managed to follow far enough within the presence of current guest he glanced around for a comfortable position to place himself. Finding a decent sized empty space to the side of the main room he bore no visible weapons at this time, but he would be ready enough should trouble come for the King. It was his job after all while serving beneath the King's son to fight and protect this very land. 

'Now we wait for the King..' Coiling his long body up slowly in a lazy heap he leaned against the nearest pillar in silence. Golden hues pierced the crowd with no apparent emotion in their pits. From where he was positioned he could see outside where the King would be coming in from behind and on the interior he saw the throne and its many guests within. This was a rather comfortable position for Krava as he breathed deeply. 

"Welcome home good King.."

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Cyan eyes once again closed from slits of reality, his gills frilling with an intake of the sea, his mind freeing as he moved floating step to floating step, barely moving the very dust from their place; his toes barely molesting the space of the sand as they collected unto him, the boy left to disappear from the world, to become invisible from the warmth of others. In his mind, the confines were gone, the chains broken as a boy sculpted his landscape through the sands buried in a murky emptiness, the void of the mind left untouched by most for within the darkness lay the worst of betrayals, the betrayal of the self. In these sands a memory which imprinted itself into his mind, making the boy named Vindex aware of the history left unspoken through removed tongue, and bloodied throat, a nightmare which repeated itself with every passing moment that he moved from the street he edged down, to the beginning of the next. This would part momentarily as his eyes once again, adjusting to the light, and to the surroundings he was invoked upon; the pressure of the sea held him once again like chains upon the prisoner, a grand illusion of freedom cast down by the pride of a tyrannical being, or beings. This pressure would seep down to the very soul of Vindex, choking him like the noose of reality which swept down upon the mind's neck, and held them from touching the truth, and as his soul gasped for life passed this cataclysmic reveling, it all changed, the breath leaving as the lips opened, exhaling the shadows from his body, secreting the memories of bloodshed from another, and the silence for but a moment began once more. 

It's a hard thing to imagine, living with the understanding of living without uni-secular thoughts, going mad by the memories of those you never met, these memories in the eyes of another, to experience what only few could grasp, what few could remotely fathom; it was this same gift which drove a boy to malice, and it was in this gift that the curse of ruin was born for the boy, or so it was unraveling still a the street was blown passed him, his body on a form of autopilot as he watched on, entranced by the horrors of this people, the justice of Nymeria serving as not only the shield of protection, acting as a guardian of the masses, but also as the shiv being buried within Vindex's very heart; each strike to his breast bleeding the kindness, bleeding the innocence down within the sand, so that he may one day become the en-actor of his own ruin. His eyes would stay open as he moved, almost silently; the sand he had collected for warmth warping as his eyes gazed upon his fellow kind, noting their beauty through accessory, rather than natural figure as they usually intended; they now covered themselves like the reaper trying to comfort a common harlot. In this regard, vindex was far too ignorant to the festivity at hand to understand why they did so, and without the knowledge to proctor a full awareness, he instead only tinkered the fact he was a sore thumb as around him, others seemed to pierce a glaring eye towards him, making him shift deep down, his stomach knotting like a festering worm digging to the core of a rotting apple.

In this regard to wish to fit in, he gradually morphed the sand upon his body, his mind concentrating upon the flesh to seek a form of apparel; his imagination the greatest key to his will, and upon his will enforced the aetheral, and pact; allowing him to replicate what he saw, and what he could imagine. At first, his apparel only seemed to follow the murky sand color, which would strike out among the clash of bright colors, further striking him out, and so with a bit more effort, and some creative resolve; the young vindex used his child imagination to paint a new form of artwork, that of the sand around him. His legs remained bare, sand coating the groin and waist in what seemed like a robe lay, where his arms were bare as rough patches of sand formed the shape of scales. His fingers covered by rings of sand, turned to a brown pottery color; it was no use trying to change color and so instead; he resembled a child dressed in pottery, his athletic frame still on display, yet shined as both sophisticated by the intricate design work, which came from further shaping as he moved; and with savagery, a personal touch to assume a more commanding look, though it couldn't be farther from acceptable. to finish the look, he looked upon an alley to find an abandoned drape of a light tan color. Sneaking to it, the young vindex simply snatched it, and wore it as a cover, creating a broach from the sand to completely cover his arms, and shoulders, it falling upon his inner arms, and leaving only a slit of the chest visible. With some handiwork with the broach came a proper hood, though part of the drape remained tattered, making a worn look emerge. 

Once again moving, now donning a full attire of makeshift materials and sand, Vindex continued down his path, moving closer and closer to the throne area, looking audaciously suspicious at the same time.

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Amaya closed her eyes, humming along quietly while running the steps of each dance through in her mind. She knew them well; she had rehearsed them more times than she could count; but this would be her first major performance. Though she was more excited than nervous, she couldn't help but wonder if there was more that could have been done. Coming finally to the conclusion that though there was always more that could be done, that did not mean that it should, her eyes opened again. She ceased her humming and looked up when Eilwen offered her help. Amaya wasn't surprised that she did, it simply took her a moment to blink herself back to reality, having been lost in thought. "Oh. Yes. Thank you." She swept her hair behind her to ensure that it wouldn't be in their way before letting her thumbs run in circles down her right thigh when the other woman begun massaging her left. 

"I fear I may have shifted too late," she admitted with a sigh, frowning her brows slightly. She felt the circulation flowing easier now, but there was still a slight buzzing. When Eilwen complimented her, she was rewarded with a small pull in the corners of the young woman's mouth and her green eyes lighting up. 

"You think so? I only... Well, I only had time to paint one." She applied a light pressure to the sides of her knee with her thumbs, circling them slowly. Looking up, she studied her young leader with smiling eyes. 

"It is... amazing. What you have prepared, I mean. A proper tribute to our King." Her words were sincere. She was truly impressed with what Eilwen had done - and that she still had the energy and time to stop and help her, even for a moment, and be calm and collected. Amaya was certain that she, would have been stressed about the responsibility and amount of organization that this would all take if she had been in Eilwen's position.

@Lacernella Rubra

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What is the pale thing in the sky?


It is the moon, my love.

What does it do?


It guards the world from the blanket of darkness.

Does it always prevail?


Not always, but in the darkest hour when all hope seems lost, the moon returns again.

So it is like you!


So it would seem. Just like the shining sun that chases the darkness away.

That is the big bright thing?


Yes, my love.

It is so bright to chases away darkness!


Just like you do. You are like the sun, and the stars that shine. A glimmer of light in our often dark world.



Ha! then you are the moon of my life, Rahab.


And you are my sun and stars, my love.


Rahab recalled this conversation when Urz was younger, before the stasis had taken them all. Often she treated her nephew to the skies above their heads. She would treat him to the teachings Jawan had passed onto her. The moon, the many constellations and their stories, the bright sun. It had become commonplace between them.

She stood proudly, though her nephew towered over her. A blade by any other name, but Urizix would survive this skirmish with just this scarring to show for it. Where was the young, curious boy who followed his Aunt everywhere? Sometimes Rahab guiltily felt as though she were letting her life slip away, missing the very family she loved coming and going. Urzix had become a fine specimen of a Nymerian. “No more.” She replied—firm and sternly, “Only the dead are honorably silent, Urzix.” When Rahab was certain Urzix had brushed her off, she cupped his cheeks and turned the fullness of her stern, lilac eyes on him, “I mean it.”

“I am sorry for being so prideful. I will rely more on others.”

He simply apologized to her, the brush of his lips on her forehead upon cupping her cheeks.

“Forgive my foolishness, Moon of my life.”

He was all manner of business and the Nymerian in him emerged again. It was admirable—endearing, even. She was proud of him, but fuller of worry. Just like that, he was gone again. And just like that, the cold exterior erected itself.

“Rxaen, prepare my armor. I am going to the surface.” The command that came was the swift, cutting tone her attendants were accustomed to. Though they knew better—they knew their Lady well enough, they knew better still than to speak of it. She was a woman with secrets, and they kept them faithfully. Bustling about, preparations were made.

If she did not see where Jawan’s grave was located, she might break at the sight of her brother’s return. That was a weakness the princess of Nymeria could not afford.

Not here.

Not now.

Not ever.



Edited by Deus Ex Aizen

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I met a drowned sailor on the beach as he lay
And as I drew nigh him, it put me to a stand.,
When I knew it was my own true Love
By the marks on his hand.

As he was a sailing from his own dear shore
Where the waves and the billows so loudly do roar,
I said to my true Love, I shall see you no more
So farewell, my dearest, you're the lad I adore.

“Nonsense. You shifted in time, you will perform beautifully.” There was a hint of something deeper in the woman’s words. Perhaps if Amaya didn’t perform as well as hoped, she would find herself ejected from the Meretricem in entirety. However, Eilwen’s attention turns and she finishes rubbing the woman’s legs and moves to stand, a bright smile upon her face.

“Thank you. But my organization means nothing if my dancers aren’t where they need to be. I have faith in each and every one of you, however.” Eilwen gently pulls Amaya to her feet, pausing to grasp the satchel she had left upon the ground.

“Now then, I trust I can impart a very important task to you. I must go return the King’s crown, but I need someone to start the dancers. I trust that task to you. It is very important that you start them at just the right moment. Too soon and they won’t be well received, and too late and we leave the crowd wondering.” Eilwen imparts her knowledge upon the young woman, patting her shoulder. Withdrawing, Eilwen turns her attention to the palace where the gathering people have amassed. “Mm, yes, I leave this task to you.” She presses a brief, platonicly affectionate kiss to Amaya’s cheek. A gesture of good faith, if you will.

“Good luck, Amaya!” She waves, the ghostly woman disappearing into the current and the throng of people that have piled into the hall, hoping to catch a glimpse at their newly returned royal.

With an air of respect and her head held high, however, Eilwen passes by Q’myha, pausing only for the briefest of moments to press a kiss to his cheek as she floats onwards towards Rxychra. While she only has a few memories of the King prior to the stasis and his adventures on land, Eilwen knows him instantly. He commands a room, even alongside his brother, Xaprychor. Her rose colored gaze turns towards him, settling as a slow smile creeps along her visage. Slowly and with purpose, she approaches like a ghost – quiet and ethereal in the current as it whips her hair about. The sac held tenderly within her hands is brought forward as she comes to approach him in full. Pausing in her footsteps, webbed toes dig into the muddy bottom of the ocean to anchor herself.

Her gaze moves briefly to N’at, and the woman waited for the King to address her. She would not step in where it was not required, only after Rxychra had seen fit to acknowledge the woman, did Eilwen even clear her throat.

From the bag came the black crown, ebon and so dark it seemed to consume the very light around it. She held it between her graceful hands, presenting it for him to wear. The weight of it had not changed, but perhaps he would find redonning it heavier with the weight of years.


She put her arms around him, saying O! My dear!
She wept and she kiss'd him ten thousand times o'er.
O I am contented to lie by thy side.
And in a few moments, this lover she died.

And all in the churchyard these two were laid,
Anda stone for remembrance was laid on her grave,
My joys are all ended, my pleasures are fled,
This grave that I lie in is my new married bed.

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The time had come for patience and ceremony, and Xaprychor the younger King, the King in the Deep, had both. Even as his brother, true to his habit, made his sibling wait - the delay of his arrival only let the anticipation build. Both that of Xaprychor and of the crowd before the castle, drawn here by their expectations - the Kings had to meet here. It was only right. In time, Xaprychor was joined by others who would await their traveling King’s arrival as well. He was, perhaps, somewhat distant for a Nymerian, or perhaps discerning, but he dignified his peers with graceful, ceremonious nods, some with a brief epithet. “Charming as ever…”, “How good of you to join…”, “Yes. Take your place here, the King on the Waves is bound to arrive soon...” And so on and so forth, greetings trailing off into pauses. His eyes scanned the crowd. Rxychra wouldn’t dare make them wait, would he? 

When the moment came, the crowd stirred of its own accord, much like a wave, some flowed to the front, then drifted back slowly, like saltwater cascades drawn back into the mother sea. Some yearned to touch him, then, some satisfied, others, perhaps, overwhelmed, retreated to let their other peers do the same. Xaprychor watched them shower Rxychra with adoration, yet he himself was calm, or so it seemed. His brother ascended the steps and he simply waited. He came closer, his familiar face, his strength - all apparent. There must have been a speech to say here, words of grand, ceremonious welcome to offer his brother. Yet as Rxychra came closer and paused before Xaprychor, the younger King spoke and but one word drifted out of his mouth. 


A moment that felt as long as his brother’s absence, yet at its conclusion, Xaprychor had not even realized when he ended up in Rxychra’s embrace. The impassive mask of his well-regulated emotions waned for but a short while. Long enough for his eyes to close as his lips to ease into a peaceful smile. He repeated with certainty. “Brother, you have returned…” Someone else in the crowd repeated similar words. Then they echoed once more, more and more voices picking up the chant. He has returned. He has returned! And the triumph of Nymeria rippled the water, a thousand bodies glistening and thrashing in joyous prelude to festive revelries. Music came after, drowning the throes of triumph. The two brothers finally separated, though for a time their arms held. Rxychra had his chance to greet the others, though only briefly - for as much a celebration as it was, much work remained to be done. 

Come, brother mine. The throne room awaits.” Xaprychor invited and he gestured gracefully towards the main castle gates. Not all Nymerians would get to follow them there, but even with their celebration taking place outside, the castle was far from vacant. Dancers melded into a graceful flurry of fin, skin and veil. Honor guard stood watch, polearms clanging sonorously against the floor as the procession headed by the two Kings entered. They were the spark this day needed for the true magnitude of a festival to unfold and one could tell that nobody was holding back anymore. 

You no doubt have much to tell of your travels, Rxychra?” With his more typical demeanor reclaimed, though still eased by their reunion, Xaprychor’s tone regained some of its solemnity. “The surface world… I must say I have not shied away from my own… forays… On my own? Don’t be ridiculous. There was work in the capital. It was done by willing volunteers of the Land Invasion Unit… Their armor proved strong enough for brief excursions. I have only bettered the efficiency of their water reserves with the tests they provided… Oh nothing. Not a great lot of news to share… They have fascinating capabilities, some of them, but ultimately, I see not how they would resist us.” His passion for his work invaded his speech, he seemed to display a subtle satisfaction whenever he saw approval in his brother’s eyes. 

They sampled the food. They sampled the guests. There was much to experience here - anyone unaccustomed to Nymeria would be overwhelmed by the excesses of this day, but not they. Knowing the time he had spent apart from home, Xaprychor did give his brother time for others. Whether to speak, to embrace, to kiss or to merely acknowledge in some way. His patience had been rewarded by this day. A boon he would be willing to share with the deserving, of which many were now here. Members of the royal family, the sons, the daughters and siblings. 

The Deepwatch, of course, has been productive as well. In part, your return is celebrated with this wild abandon due to their efforts. Our people are assured no more knives remain at our backs.” Rxychra was not without the attention of women as they drifted across the throne room, though Xaprychor remained relatively indifferent. For a moment he seemed to take note of his throne between the flashing scales of his Nymerian brethren in the room. “All is well, brother mine, you are home, after all… Yet there is something else I have waited for. With your return, we can finally plot our next move… I saved you the liberty of announcing it, brother mine. I know you are eager to step away from excursions and to a more… decisive approach. Your men have not been idle, and neither have our labs. We have nursed to life numerous means of combat and conquest.” 

He should have been there for a longer time, and should have wanted so much more to be heard by his brother. Yet in the midst of their conversation, muted somewhat by the sound of music from every which corner, Xaprychor was approached. A cloaked figure clad in the more subtle variant of the Deepwatch regalia. The hooded creature leaned over to the young king and whispered. He reacted with a mere nod, despite the magnitude of the news. He should have been by his brother’s side the whole day. He should have listened to every speech at the festivities, seen every competition and sampled the joys of this day to the fullest. Instead, he excused himself at some point and withdrew. 

A quarry awaited. Rare and still drawing breath, in an enclosure in his lab where water pressure was less punishing, so that the lessers of Nymeria’s dominant species from dry land could survive. If his estimates were correct, his men would have released the new subject into it only recently. Was it still disoriented? Was it already used to the appliances used to keep it alive for Xaprychor’s ends? He pondered and even on his way to the lab to meet his involuntary “guest”, Xaprychor would hear the songs of celebration turn to songs of long-awaited war. Rxychra’s time to announce the Land Invasion has come and hidden beneath Xaprychor’s collected demeanor something pulsed with the sense of a long term plan’s pieces falling into place. 


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