Hidden 17 days ago Post by Thanqol
Raw
Avatar of Thanqol

Thanqol

Member Online

Morality does not come easily to Robena. Many other things do - music, riding, killing. There was not a knight as gifted in form and instinct - all but the morality. That is a thing that must be taught to her, though she has long been a poor student.

You can see it in her eyes, Constance! She does not feel guilt. Her conscience does not twist and writhe. She is not consumed with inner agony. She could stand up and shrug off the chalice like a bear shaking the snow of winter from its back. To confront her with the morality of the hunt is to beseech the lion to lie down with the lamb. Amidst the smooth and sharp lines of Spanish steel, Germanic wood, Turkic leather and English bear hide there is no softness and no kindness.

And yet the pilgrim's armband shows not a blade or banner or roman Chi Rho, but the chalice. And here is a moment where that amoral bear looks away from you to gaze upon the chalice as though listening to it. And now she looks upon you again.

"Constance," she said, that eternal and musical voice of the forest. "I have sinned a great many times in my life. What you saw upon that cursed night was not a momentary lapse, it was the conclusion of a long and dark road. Judgement has already been passed. I have been found guilty. I have accepted my sentence."

She stands, tall and dark and melancholy. "I have since existed in a strange twilight state, a ghost unbound between worlds. I do not pretend that I shall find forgiveness, and I will not torment you by asking for yours. If it comforts your mind, think of me as I think of myself - a restless spirit loose upon the world, doing what good she can because she finds herself enjoying it on its own terms. Because I do enjoy it, Constance. I have found a quiet joy that I never found at the bottom of the tankard. And I will enjoy it as best I can for the few weeks I have left."

Despite her peaceful words - or perhaps because of them - her voice has gone quiet and her eyes distant. A sadness hangs deep and heavy upon her. And perhaps there is something beyond the forest there after all.

"I have but one request," she said. "And that is that you be the one to bury me when this strange dream comes to its end. Not for my sake. Hate is a heavy burden to carry, and I pray that you would be able to bury yours along with me. You are too beautiful and pure and kind to have your life twisted by hatred for the dead."
Hidden 17 days ago Post by Tatterdemalion
Raw
Avatar of Tatterdemalion

Tatterdemalion Veiled Fox

Member Seen 1 hr ago

β€œIt is not hate for the dead that I would bury at your grave, Sir Coilleghille,” Robena says, each word as deliberate as the steps of a stair. She stands, too, and faces Robena. Here, they can be peers. Her bloodless fingers rest on the gilded back of her chair.

β€œI will bury us there, Sir Coilleghille. Then we will see what the spring makes of our bed.”

She takes up the skull, conceals it once more in her sleeve, and makes to leave. There is a moment enough for a word more, before she passes through and the castle returns, resumes.
Hidden 17 days ago Post by Thanqol
Raw
Avatar of Thanqol

Thanqol

Member Online

"I love you," said Robena.

And that is all that remained to her. The words of a ghost, come from a heart twisted with far too living pain. She does not, cannot move and nor shall she till the dawn arises beyond that distant window to send her spirit on.
Hidden 14 days ago Post by Anarion
Raw
GM
Avatar of Anarion

Anarion School Fox

Member Seen 6 hrs ago

Robena

Your words hang in the air, a barrier to the return of anything one could call normal. The world around you is a puppet show. Diners return. There is talking and ambiance, they serve potatoes and salted meats and you eat enough for sustenance though you remember no taste upon your tongue. A trick of the mind, a body functioning without thought, directed from afar. Of Constance there is no further sign through the night. Though you are offered guidance to your room, you rest in your seat at the high table as a statue until the light pulls itself, ever so tentatively, above the rim of the windows and dares to brush the top of your head in a defiant show of warmth.

It is Sir Liana, the younger knight, who greets you in the morning. She enters carrying a simple loaf of bread in a basket in one hand, and a water basin in the other, a towel draped over her arm. "I thought you might be hungry, and perhaps need to refresh yourself" she says with a kind smile, placing the bread on the table and the basin before you. Her face and her manner ask no reply nor word of thanks, but your chivalry may not permit your silence. What words are left to you in response to kindness?

Constance

You pass from that table through the double doors and are met by the returning motley, such as they are (or perhaps you think better of them than to use such a term despite their complicity in Tristan's antics?). Sir Harold offers a reassuring pat on the shoulder, Sir Liana a hopeful smile, and Sir Hector a word of sympathy. Lady Sauvage stops and looks upon you, her face stoic. "Will you deem her worthy, I wonder? Do not hold back against her. If you do not press her and give her the opportunity to show you and us her nobility, I cannot avert her doom. Tomorrow, you should test her purity, and after that her resolve." She too passes into the hall and returns to her meal.

What do you think of that advice? Perhaps reflect on it during your morning ablutions. Surely you're getting up early after Tristan has been pelting you with snowballs so often.

Tristan

Sir Hector grimaces like she just took a bite out of a lemon. "We are gathered to determine our future." She looks at you with a chagrined face that says yes I know that's unhelpful, this isn't easy okay? "It would perhaps be easiest to say that we are here to determine if Robena's fate may be averted. But...that is misleading, it's just one question. We are here too to see what role Robena may play, and what role Constance may play with that sword of hers. And as you are tied intimately with them, so too what role you will play. I am...I was once close to King Uther. I would see things change if I could, but the shape of that change depends on whether Robena lives or dies, on what charge Lady Constance offers to us. I could, perhaps play the role of teacher if Sir Coilleghille fails, but we will be worse for it, nor do I know if Lady Constance will offer this kingdom redemption if Robena dies."

Sir Hector looks at you then Tristan. "And I would be lying if told you I did not think the lady's affections misguided. That so much should hang on this one knight is unfair at best." And she doesn't say I'm jealous but she might as well have written it on a banner and displayed it upon her tabard for how obvious it is to you both.

But then the doors open and Constance walks out and the knights return to their dinner leaving you, Mort (scratching his head in confusion) and Constance. You have the evening and morning to share your plans. You are making plans, yes? Did you want to go out hunting with the group? Or perhaps you need to cheer Constance yet again, given the ghastly look on her face and the skull in her hand.
Hidden 13 days ago Post by Thanqol
Raw
Avatar of Thanqol

Thanqol

Member Online

"Sir Liana, as you live, never disappoint a maiden," said Robena. "Even the grave is no release for the chains your heart will be made to wear."

Robena pauses, tired and grumpy. Something about pouring one's heart out to a pretty stranger just didn't feel the same when sober. In no mood for flirting, commentary, or maintaining her mortal coil in general she released the tension in her elbow which sent her face plummeting unsupported directly down into the basin. She listlessly let her head bob under the water for a moment before she came to the conclusion that she was too hungry to drown in her handbasin. She raised her head, dripping wet, and miserably took a bearlike bite of the bread and chewed it with grim determination.

She was in luck, though. She'd have a day to rest and saturate in her misery. After yesterday's hunt only the devil herself would have the energy to go riding again.
Hidden 7 days ago Post by Tatterdemalion
Raw
Avatar of Tatterdemalion

Tatterdemalion Veiled Fox

Member Seen 1 hr ago

Purity.

The water is clear. She can see herself stretched out in it, a landscape. An island. White cliffs lapped by the sea. Untouched. The way we all were before Brutus arrived, before the Arimathean came with his cross.

Purity.

A chalice that can be torn away and trodden on is no chalice at all. A pilgrim who only keeps on the road as it suits her is no pilgrim, either. Devotion is an all-consuming thing, and the Chi Ro demands so much. The circle only requires that you yield, that you not break yourself by trying to push against it, that you accept each in turn: the spring, the summer, the autumn and the winter. Yet Robena is a follower of the Xristos, and if that is where her heart lies, let her hold to it. Let her hold fast.

Purity.

Constance rallies together a motley band of servants and squires to create the centerpiece of a mystery play in the courtyard. Dig but a little in the hard earth, and the water comes bubbling forth. Dig but a little, and set the saplings there to shroud the fountain. Dig but a little, as Constance does, her pale shoulders straining, and set the flagstones in place: each one with the chalice. Let her tread upon it, and let her be tested once more.

Prepare her wardrobe, Tristan. Tonight the Lady Constance wears green, and drapes dappled scales around her shoulders. Tonight, she offers Sir Coilleghille the knowledge of weal and woe.
Hidden 7 days ago Post by Count Numbers
Raw
Avatar of Count Numbers

Count Numbers

Member Seen 1 day ago

The time for revelry is at an end. The reserves have been filled as much as they may, and now the siege. Now it is his job to shoulder what load he can without complaint.

Revelations 20:1 And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. 20:2 He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years.


If Constance is to be a serpent in a garden of purity, then it is important she be the right one. Tristan may not know the full significance of the symbol of a dragon to Sir Coilleghille, but if any were to inform him the full meaning of what he is doing, it would only be met with a grim and self-deprecating laugh. And then the work would continue.

Here is what Tristan understands: Constance is to be temptation. It is something you hate yourself for wanting. It is something that you would consider yourself weak for giving in to, and yet provokes the need to give in. To surrender is wonderful, to overcome is misery.

It is the choice between going to bed with a loneliness that aches, or a night with someone you truly love followed by a deceit that must be maintained for every day that follows. What consolation days without fear during the nights alone?

How to evoke the feeling of serpentine temptation in a dress? It is the shedding of layers of skin that gives Tristan his inspiration to use twelve layers of gossamer organza, the bottom layer being a form fitting dress which, regrettably, must be stitched firm. The only way to remove it now is to destroy it, by hand or by blade. Buttons and ties would ruin the effect. Besides, it suits the metaphor.

The subsequent layers have been prepared like bookbinding signatures, in sheets of three. A minimum amount of attachment at the shoulders, waist and knees to preserve the tightness of the form, with room to flex and twist along the body so that each layer might reveal its translucence best. The final shape suggests a wedding dress, though it is far too indecent for that purpose.

Light passes through the fringes of the dress freely, blending to opaque only at the last. With a source of light behind Constance, it evokes a radiant halo around her form. Each layer sings transparent and fragile. Each whispers how easy it must be to tear. It teases, too, at how wonderful it would be to be the one to tear it. It is so close to revealing, and yet, and yet, and yet. Each twist in that light assures you surely, surely this is the movement that reveals what lies beneath, but it will not.

To disperse the dress over so many layers also gives voice to that most dangerous of temptation's weapons: There is enough here that it would be possible to stop before things go too far. Just one, to sate the curiosity, and no further. A steady slope is more inviting than a sheer drop, though both lead to the same rock bottom.

There is a final touch to this. The neckline at the rear of the dress plunges deep down to the small of her back. The view of so much exposed skin is obstructed only by two short trains emerging from the shoulder blades. Some pinch pleating, and an upward inflection, is all that is necessary to give the effect of delicately curled wings. The promise of the skin beneath sings most sweetly behind the clearest reminder of serpentine nature.

It is not just for Sir Coilleghille's that Tristan sharpens this weapon of temptation. For Constance this will be armor, as impregnable as it is fragile. Let this be a citadel of self-confidence that will stand against any wave of doubt. Let her know that she is wanted, that she is desirable, and that she can be on the other end of heart break.

This is a monument of work. This is what Tristan does. So much tailoring frees him to talk to whoever would be interested, or interested in helping. But it leaves him little time for anything else.

Hidden 1 day ago Post by Anarion
Raw
GM
Avatar of Anarion

Anarion School Fox

Member Seen 6 hrs ago

Robena

"I hope you shall soon be refreshed with the energy to go riding again!" Lady Liana offers to you, the chipperness in her tone worthy of being tied to a bed for the entire day as punishment. "I admit it is unusual," she says more cautiously, seeing your weary face. "One would expect a day of feasting and revelry, but the Lady Sauvage has declared that we shall do three great hunts in succession and so there will be no rest. I'm sorry, you know. I ought to have said something last night but, well, you know, we had certain obligations with regard to the dinner." She makes a face that suggests she did not think much of the pomp and circumstance. She is younger than the other knights, perhaps her duty chafes at her. Regardless, she offers you a hand. "You and I are to be hunting a hart today. The lady will observe, but we are to take the lead. I am told it appears only to those knights of purity and the Lady says that is why I ought to lead with you." She blushes, a light dust of rosy pink, and makes to lead you to the stables to begin the hunt.

Tristan

You are joined by Mort, who has chosen not to join the hunting party today and Sir Harold, who seems more than a little bemused at your needlework as he smokes by the window. It is Mort who speaks first as he holds some pins on your behalf. "Shouldn't we...do something" he says helplessly, clearly unaware that you are both, in fact, doing something. "Lady Robena is here, and all these knights obviously have something to hide..." he gives sir Harold a shrug and receives one in return, the man is obviously fine with Mort's discomfiture. "I just...feel so helpless and I know you're trying to help the Lady Constance's spirits but it feels like, like we're wasting time." He hands you another pin at your request and looks at you with all the frustration of a youth who barely half a year prior thought he knew the entirety of his place in the world.

Constance

There is first, a hunt. Joining this, alone is forbidden to you for it is a different aspect of Robena's penance and testing. Only Lady Liana and Lady Sauvage of the knights have gone out this day though. They are hunting a hart, you have heard, and apparently Hector and Harold would not contribute. At least that's what they think, you had always heard from your grandmother that the sort of purity harts look for is about purpose and drive, not youth and virginity.

With the lady absent, you are, despite being a guest, the authority in the castle. Tristan is busy making dresses with Mort and Harold if you care to join them. The servants are working on your mystery play (though they may need guidance if you'd see fit to give them your time). And Sir Hector, Robena's accuser of the prior knight, is working out in the front yard of the castle, her raven hair flying behind her and sweat gleaming on her brow as she practices her sword work with an intensity that mirrors your own. This last, of course, you merely happened to notice in passing from a castle window and have certainly not been gazing out that window for the last, say, twenty minutes.

Where then will you spend your time as Robena takes on the hunt?
↑ Top
© 2007-2017
BBCode Cheatsheet