@Eviledd1984, one thing worth mentioning is that I think humans already have a primitive sort of intelligence, they just don't know how to speak or anything complex. Only one so far knows how to make fires (and that's p far in the future, like 50 years after the arrival of the gods). Also, it's safe to say that the number of humans walking around is pretty low. 20 years after the arrival of the gods, the number should be at around 200 total humans with small tribes of 30-40 humans being nomads.
How unfixable. How unmendable. How broken was existence that such series of events were fated to happen? For a moment Aella had grasped the faint glimmer of hope that the possibility of peace - however tense - brought with it. Not anymore. The glimmer turned to sand, and the sand slipped through her fingers.
She was useless, Aella realized, for a person who wasn't able to protect her family was no better than the soiled earth beneath her feet.
The Winged Goddess watched from above as the Fae performed their last march, their first and last sacred journey through the Frontier. Even as she watched, many keeled over and died, becoming dust that mixed with the dunes. Some succumbed to infection, but many simply lost the will to go on.
"Oh, you poor, poor beings..." She muttered, keeping her hands on her chest over her heart.
The only one that noticed the sudden shift in the Frontier was the most broken of them all. It was subtle, but a hazy sight had appeared over the horizon. They looked like palm trees. The broken king looked around until he caught sight of the one responsible. A being not unlike a star in plain daylight watched over them from the sky, flapping two large, beautiful white wings. The sight lasted no longer than a few seconds before the figure vanished. The sight on the horizon, however, did not vanish. It was an oasis.
So it was true, Aella thought with a sigh as she observed the ashes over Mount Pervanon. She had mourned from the moment she heard the screams and wails, but she didn't want to believe it. She didn't want to see it. Her sister was dead, the very first she had spoken to in this new world. Why did it have to be her? Such a free, naive spirit... Aella wiped her tears away and bit back a sob. She still had to find Larwen. She could feel him, but his essence was weak and frail, deep below.
She forced her heart to calmness and dived to the foot of the Mount, entered one of the many caves and walked, letting her own aura light up the way.
It was a while.
She'd followed the path without faltering, and found a great chamber where the very stone had been pulverized through what was no doubt an impressive show of strength. Aella gave a somber nod as she felt the remains of Seihdhara's lingering essence, reaching toward her as if not wanting to let go. Aella closed her eyes tightly and shook her head, then walked deeper into the cave. It wasn't long until she found a trail of essence mixed with ichor. It was Larwen's.
She found him much deeper in the cave, stuck to a cold stone wall thanks to the sword impaling his chest. Ichor poured from his wound. He was in danger. Aella's eyes widened and she flew to him.
Larwen felt the presence of a familiar god, one of comfort and kindness, but he did not move his head to look at her. To ashamed, too guilty to ever look upon her face once more. He knew she flew towards him, and his voice came out weakly, "You should not be here, Aella. Just... Just let me die." His blood, his ichor, it flowed softly from the wound that would not heal, as it shouldn't.
Aella had no words. What could she say, that it'd be okay? That the death, the murder, of their sister was something they could eventually leave behind? No. Aella sniffled and took hold of the sword. She gripped it tightly and, in a moment of weakness, saw a scene she'd replayed in her mind over and over again. Her brother's child, a corrupted young god, coughing up his own ichor and looking up at her in confusion, gripping the blade of the sword stuck through his gut.
She blinked the vision away and pulled the sword with all her might, releasing Larwen. Immediately, she dropped the sword and went to Larwen's side. Her armour faded away and in its place was left her silk dress as she helped him sit and let his head rest against her chest.
"Larwen, I... What happened?" She asked softly, her voice steady despite the tears she was shedding.
Larwen gasped as the sword was drawn from his flesh, and with a clang cast to the side. To his great shock, Aella had done what he had not wished, and began to help him sit. To this, Larwen shrank in size, his large horns disappearing entirely. He now stood roughly the same size as Aella, his head becoming more like a human's, his unsightly mouth replaced by that of lips, his sharp teeth becoming flat. His skin tone remained the same however, except for the wound, it now glowed a soft white. Larwen now looked as a human did, but very skinny and with eyes that glowed a pale white.
He felt her embrace, but Larwen did not feel as if he deserved such a thing, but she did need the truth- that much he could give. "A mistake... A terrible mistake. I had not wanted it to happen like that, I only wanted her to be more like..." Larwen began softly, "She came into Pervanon searching for a Fae, one dear to her, she thought I took it. I took many Fae, but not that one. I... I told her she would be punished for coming uninvited, for our siblings and nephew had gotten away from me. I asked her.. I asked her if she would take on perfe- my corruption. She refused of course, and in a moment of anger I... I summoned a ball of corruption to hand, then grabbed her. But... I reeled away as my flesh touched hers, I saw but your face and the memory that haunts me. Only then did I realize I could not go through with it. But it was too late..." A deep sadness echoed throughout his voice, "She took my act as aggression, and impaled me with that sword, sending me to the depths. I could... I could feel it consume her...somehow it jumped to her, my corruption. I felt her die. Felt her become nothing... and it was all my fault."
Larwen went silent for a moment, then finally said, "I am a monster Aella."
Aella only responded by holding Larwen close. It was very quiet, and then she sobbed. Once, twice, and she began crying as quietly as she could. Even as she cried, she wrapped her wings around the two of them.
Larwen could not comprehend why she held him closer, why she wrapped her wings around them, he was a demon that did not deserve it. But he could feel Aella begin to cry, she tried to hold it back but still it came. This, more then anything, both saddened and pained him greatly. He at last spoke, his voice again but a soft whisper, "I am... I am so sorry Aella. I will never be able to forgive myself... Your pain and grief, it should have never been allowed to exist." He stated while silent tears streamed down his face. "You should let me go... I am not deserving of this... I am a monster Aella. I am to be hated, not..." but his voice broke to silence and he Larwen did not move.
"S-Stop saying that...!" She said and sobbed, resting her face against the top of his now hornless head, "Stop, just... Stop, Larwen. I don't care if you're deserving, I don't care if you're a monster. I want to be here, with you, as we mourn for our sister together." She whimpered and let go of Larwen. As she did so, she shifted her position and ended up sitting on her knees and bowing her head down, "Please don't say you'd rather die, I don't think I could take losing you, too..." She said and sobbed, putting her hands against the stone ground.
Aella's words broke Larwen further, she had a heart full of kindness and love, and he had pierced it with an arrow through his actions. He did not object as she let go of him, and he too sat on his knees, his now human like hands resting on his thighs. To the side of Aella now, he watched with a downcast expression, slowly looking up. "That you would be here... with me...I...Thank you..." He knew not what else to say, and his voice fell silent. More then anything he wanted to comfort her, to hold her, but Larwen no longer considered himself worthy of even looking at Aella. For he had killed their sister, even now he wished it were not so. Such were his thoughts, they drowned him in agony, no relief would be had except time and time was quickly catching up to him.
She didn't know how long they were sat there, mourning, but eventually her tears had dried and she found herself emptily gazing at the ground, where a puddle of the luminiscent tears had gathered. A shake of her head later, she cleared her throat and stretched her wings. "Huh-" She began, pulling out a map from thin air and handing it to Larwen, "... I convinced Regulus to offer a chance for peace. You stay within the territory outlined on the map and he promises not to attack. The territory is all you have now plus the oasis that I gave you." She said, wiping her face.
"I'm not sure if it still stands after this... I suppose we'll have to wait and see." Aella sighed and embraced herself. "It feels so cold now without the fire..." She muttered while shivering.
The silence lasted for what felt like an age, a period of mourning, Seihdhara's death would haunt him forever. He looked upon the map that Aella handed to him, seeing the outline of the Anathema's. Where once this might have angered him, he no longer felt anything but an emptiness that ate at him. His taste for war died with his sister, Regulus' offer might stand, but that did not mean his other siblings would also agree to it. This he knew. More surprising, was that Aella had convinced him that peace might be an option. She had went through so much... and Larwen had thrown it all away.
Larwen instinctively raised a hand towards Aella, but paused, then retracted it. "I no longer have the will to wage war Aella, or to take any mortals, or to spread what I am. This peace...I wasted it. Once again, I am sorry. You have been too good to me, and I have given you nothing but heartache and grief. Her fire.. It will always be there, Aella... you just have to search." Larwen said softly.
Aella looked at him and shrugged half-heartedly, "Peace is never wasted, Larwen. There's still hope, we can still find it, but..." She bit her lip and shook her head, then stood up and offered a hand to Larwen, "I like this new appearance of yours much more, Larwen. You have eyes now." She said and forced a warm smile to her lips.
He felt the truth behind her words, peace was not possible now, not for him at least. He knew she stood up and offered her hand, and at last Larwen looked at her. His guilt festered like a bad wound, even seeing her brought about him pain, for her eyes told him more of how she felt then the smile that pursed her lips. Such a warm smile, but one that felt forced, one that looked at him like everything would be alright. Larwen knew it would not. His very act had scarred him, Aella, all the gods. They would never look at him in the same light again, he was now a cretin of the lowest order. Larwen bade no move to take Aella's hand, no matter how much he wanted to. "Aella...Your eyes tell me the grief behind your words, the sheer agony I have inflicted upon you. I am unworthy to touch you, to look at you. I...I.. should leave this world. My presence would only cause more pain to you. Telum will be coming for me now, I wish not to have you hurt more." Larwen finished, looking down at the ground once more.
Aella forcefully grabbed Larwen's hand and in the blink of an eye, they were back at the chamber with the Tree they had both created. There, she let go of him and pointed at the Tree, "We created that together, Larwen. That beautiful being wouldn't exist if not for us. Don't you think you're turning a blind eye to the good in you? The potential you have to create?" She pursed her lips and after a moment, she gently put her hands on Larwen's cheeks and made him lock eyes with her, "I am a monster too, you know. These hands that you seem to enjoy are also responsible for the deaths of so many Gods... And if someone like me can change their ways, then you can try to as well. Remember, brother, only you can decide who you are."
"Accidents happen and they're painful, but pain is a natural part of any life..."
Larwen looked up at the tree, it felt larger then ever before. He let Aella touch him, her soft hand gentle, and when they locked eyes he looked deeply into her own, "A... monster?" Larwen whispered, he could not wrap his head around the Goddess in front of him capable of murdering gods. Though she did have a point, his potential was there, but he felt as if he could no longer reach it. "I can feel it inside me... the memory that haunts my dreams, it wants me to do something... I know not what." Larwen paused, then continued, "This pain...If I had known...I would never have hurt her. It should have been me, Aella. I should have died..I will try...for her. For you."
Aella smiled and closed her eyes, resting her head against Larwen's chest, being careful not to disturb his healing wound. "Thank you for trying. As for the memory, I'm afraid I don't know what to say about that. You'll probably find out what it is you have to do in due time."
After a long while of Aella resting against him, Larwen wrapped his arms around her in an embrace. He still hated himself for what had been done, but the pain of not being able to hold her, outweighed the pain of doing so. "I know not what is now in store for me, but judgement will come in one form or another. I ask that you do not defend me when it comes, Aella. Telum was Seihdhara's child, his wrath will be great indeed. I do not want you to take anymore pain upon yourself when if it can be prevented. Please."
"I will not let him kill you, if that's what you're asking of me." Aella huffed.
"No...But he will seek vengeance upon his mother's killer." Larwen sighed, "I need to leave Galbar, Aella. For Time. Time to heal... For everyone... it's the only way to avoid more violence. More pain." And to this Larwen knew the truth, for he could not be more despised now. It was only right he go into exile, to find solitude and a sense of purpose beyond his corruption. His thoughts turned to the Zalsarix and his children, to the Perfected Ley and Fae. To Maeve. Larwen would have to abandon them, their father, to a world that would hate them. He could not take them with, for he knew not where his journey would take him.
"I-" She wanted to say he was wrong, that he should stay, but that would have been too selfish and naive. Larwen was speaking the truth and even if she didn't like it, exile was the only way he'd be safe for now. "I... Understand. I will be waiting for your return. Send me a message every once in a while, yes? To know you're okay."
To this Larwen gave a tight squeeze and asked, "I need you to do something for me... Collapse the entrance to Pervanon. Thought it pains me greatly, what I have created in the depths of this place should be forgotten. Please, will you do this for me?"
Aella nodded and looked at the Tree one last time. "No one will ever see this garden we've created, huh? I will do it."
"Thank you Aella... This garden was never meant for anyone else but either of us... Take the seeds from the tree, plant them across Galbar. Let them grow. I know Telum will not listen to me, or the others, and I do not ask them for forgiveness, but, let them know what happened here. If...If you ever need me, speak my name and I won't be far." Larwen stated, then pulled away from Aella, looking at her beauty one last time, smiling ever so softly as he did. His voice came as a soft whisper, "Goodbye... my love." And Larwen vanished from the garden of Pervanon, from Aella's sight, to a distant place far beyond Galbar.
His exile had begun.
From the blackness of Pervanon, where Larwen had sat impaled into the stone wall, there was naught but silence. Until the blood of Larwen stirred, for his ichor had not yet dissipated, and when Seihdhara's sword struck him, it did far more then wound the God. It broke apart of him, shattering it into the rock where it began to leech out like blood from a fresh wound. It pooled with the essence of Larwen, subduing the golden ichor, dominating, mixing, and growing, savoring every bit of the meager amount left behind. There it continued to gestate, to think, and its first thoughts were of pain, but not its own.
Vines of black matter erupted from the mass, interconnected and forming large claws as they touched the stone.
Then another arm.
A leg followed, strong and sturdy.
Then another leg formed.
It rose from where it at knelt, standing as tall as Larwen had.
It's head formed from the black mass, twisting into a foul visage.
Flames then erupted from it, bright and hot, the creature coming to life in perpetual agony.
Aella watches over the Fae as they venture into the Frontier and shifts things around a bit so that a small oasis ends up close to them.
She then goes to Pervanon, sees Seihdhara's remains and bites back tears. Eventually she goes deep into Pervanon and finds Larwen, impaled to a wall. She helps him out of the predicament and they talk and mourn for a long while, with Aella finding out that Seihdhara's death was an accident.
Eventually, Larwen tells her that the only way forward was with him seeking self-exile. After a heartfelt goodbye, he leaves. Now Aella has been left with the task of making the entrance to Pervanon collapse.
Unknown to anyone, the blood that had flowed out of Larwen's wound and pooled in the depths of Pervanon became an Avatar.
These were her brother's creations, made in his image. She stared at them sleeping, huddled together. They were in a clearing of the original forest, the one also created by her brother Ipeyr. He had good taste in creations, she thought with a smile as she saw their chests rising and falling with each breath they took.
Something was missing, however. They were all males. There was no way for them to reproduce like that, so Aella had to take it upon herself to fix their plight.
She smiled lovingly down at the sleeping men and after a moment of silence, standing in the cool breeze of the forest, she walked up to each one of them and kissed their foreheads, sending them into a deep, dreamless sleep.
"Sleep peacefully, my sons." She whispered to the last one, brushing her hand through his long hair. Gently, she opened the man's mouth and put her hand inside, reaching for one of the man's wisdom teeth. When she felt said tooth, she gripped it tightly between her fingers and...
The tooth came off, torn from the jaw. Aella's hand came out of the man's mouth covered in blood. Quickly, she make sure no debris or part of the tooth was left in the man's gums and healed the deep wound with a caress to his cheek. She placed the removed tooh next to the man's head, and went to the next. She did the same with all seven men. When finished, she washed her hands in nearby creek and went back to the first tooth she removed.
She got close to it, held the tips of her index fingers to its sides and closed her eyes. "You'll be so beautiful and gifted, my daughters..." She smiled as she muttered. Soon she felt the texture of the tooth change and she felt it grow. Eventually, it was no longer a tooth, but a head that she felt, completely with soft, long hair. She heard the breathing, she felt the heartbeat.
When she opened her eyes, she saw what could have been a reflection of her, but shorter and much more nude. Complete with blonde hair and fair skin and, she assumed, bright blue eyes. Aella kissed her forehead and immediately felt a strong bond to the woman. "You are Caritas, my daughter." She said to the sleeping woman and went to the next.
To the others she gave no name. Instead choosing to let them decide for themselves. She tried to deny it to herself, but it was clear that she had just now developed a clearly bigger love for the first she had created.
Just like that, she stood and watched the now fourteen men and women sleeping, cuddle up the each other. They were now paired up, man and woman. One last thing to do now. The men had been blessed with virility, so it made sense that the women would be able to keep up. With a single silent prayer, she gave the men and women healthy bodies, so that disease or injury would be minor walls in their objective.
She grinned when she finished, "Love each other as you love the earth beneath your feet and the sky over your heads, my children. Spread out and fill the world with your offspring, so that the land feels the warmth you harbor in your hearts." She said and observed as the men and women woke up and looked at each other. First with surprise, then with fear, and then with attraction and curiosity.
Finally, as some of them embraced, they looked at Aella, the Winged Goddess, smiling warmly down at them before vanishing in a flash of light.
Aella sees a bunch of men sleeping bunched up and thinks, 'This is sad, we need women to liven this up' So she created women by extracting a wisdom tooth from each men and turning that tooth into a woman.
She ends up creating 7 women, one of which she names Caritas because she's her favorite, as she looks exactly like her but shorter and cuter in that weak-mortal way.
She blesses them with healthy bodies and tells them to spread out and fill the world with their offspring and leaves them to their business.
Level 3 9 Might left 4 Miracles 2/6 to Level
Used 1 Miracle to bless the bodies of the 7 men and 7 women so they're extra healthy and resilient. Also made the women a bit more fertile.
Remaining: Level 3 9 Might 3 Miracles 2,25/6 to level
Regulus had looked into his reflection well, and had observed what had been occurring in the world while he mediated in the cave. There he found a very dreadful thing, a tree of temptation. He could hear the whispers from through the well, but it had no effect on the god, and the spirit he saw the world through had no mind of its own to be inflicted. This was different from Larwen's other creations. He inspected it, and found that it was the creation of the mad god, and someone else. He could understand the mad god working with Larwen, but he did not feel the same darkness in this other god. He had a brief talk with Yggdrasil as to what he should do with this other god, and he accepted the tree's council. He went to back to the reflection well, and spoke into it, "Send my summons to this other god or goddess. We need to speak. Immediately."
A few moments passed before a flash of light covered the area and the Winged Goddess, Aella, stepped into the private plane. She looked around the room, noticing the large Yggdrasil and the abundant vegetation. Finally, she looked at Regulus and smiled, "Brother, it is good to see you. This is quite an interesting place, it's the first time I see such a design." She said, walking towards Yggdrasil and putting her palm on it while closing her eyes, "So, this is the being that called me here, is that right?"
Regulus paused, this new god did not immediately seem dangerous, but she was conspiring with Larwen and Gremju. "No. Yggdrasil's soul is bound to this castle. I had another means of contacting you. However, I did not summon you here to speak about my creations. Tell me, why do aid Larwen."
Aella sighed and turned toward Regulus, no longer keeping her palm on Yggdrasil. "Because he's our brother, and he's suffering," She clasped her hands and looked away, "and when our family's suffering, the last thing we do is attack them..."
Regulus took a deep breath, "That monster is not my family. And when they threaten existence itself, I believe that is grounds to attack him. Tell me, when he spreads his filth across an entire continent, will you then see we need handle the problem. The world? The universe? The multiverse? Tell me how much life he must snuff out before it justified to take action against him."
Aella remained silent for a while, but eventually walked closer to Regulus with slow, deliberate steps. "Regulus, I've spoken to Larwen, I've created with him. He's just like us, but he suffers. His very self is damaged and twisted, but I've felt it! We can help him heal, we can do it! We only need to accept him and love him, no matter what." When she got close enough to Regulus, she grabbed one of his hands with both of hers and locked her eyes with his.
"Brother, I know what you're thinking, how you're feeling. It is okay to feel annoyance, hatred, but to desire the death of a fellow God..." She went silent and looked down at the ground.
Regulus allowed her to grab his hands, "I once again ask. How much death and misery must he spread. How much of his own sickness does he need to spread across the land. Will you choose Larwen, or would you choose the world."
"There is no choice to be made. I choose all." Aella frowned, "Have you even bothered to experience your brother's world? To try and see what he sees and feel what he feels? He felt so alone, Regulus. None of his family wishes to truly interact with him, none but me." She said and let go of his hand, disappointment clear on her face.
Regulus sighed and took another deep breath, "I will feel neither sympathy nor remorse for a monster that wages war for the sake of war. That has no respect for the sanctify of life or law. But, do you truly believe that it is possible for Larwen to coexist with the other gods."
"Yes, I do! He's allowed me in his home, asked me to create gifts for him and enjoyed my company. I believe he is more than capable of coexisting. Gremju and I tried to dissuade him from war, I'm sure you're aware." She spared a glance toward Yggdrasil, "He was very receptive, but told us that he couldn't consider peace, as everyone else was set on destroying him. He's not a beast, he's just made a lot of mistakes." Aella said, 'Like me.'
Regulus once again paused, before calling out to the room, "Spring, the map." he said. And as he did, a female Green Sylvan scurried across the room with a map in her hands. Regulus took the map, and then handed it to Aella.
Aella took the map with some hesitation and looked at it, noticing the circle drawn around Mount Pervanon. She looked at Regulus with an arched eyebrow, "What is this?"
Regulus looked at with a stern look, "An ultimatum, take it to Larwen and tell him that he keeps his corruption to that area, I will leave him be. Otherwise, I will mobilize my forces against him."
Aella looked between him and the map a few times, then spoke, "Could you add the westernmost Oasis in the Frontier to his territory, Regulus? I've already told him that I wanted him there, you see." She said somewhat awkwardly.
There was a pause, before Regulus waved his hand over the paper, and the circle stretched and contorted to include the mentioned Oasis. Just barely stretched beyond it by a few miles. He felt very guilty for what he did next, but he took Stormcaller and sounded it, dispersing the fog around Larwen's domain. "A token to show my serenity." he said.
Aella was speechless. She had never expected Regulus to cede any ground on the matter, much less give Larwen a chance. "... Thank you," Aella said and a moment later, embraced Regulus with arms as well as wings, "It means a lot to me that you're willing to give him a chance, Regulus."
Regulus grunted, "That is enough. And remember, this is the only chance I am giving him. I will always choose the world over him. And I will also choose the world over you." he said, in a harsh tone.
Aella broke the hug, looking like a lost puppy and nodded. In the blink of an eye, she was gone.
Regulus sees the tree of temptation, and sees that it is the work of a gods other than Larwen. He has a conversion with the Yggdrasil before calling Aella to his domain. They have a talk about Larwen, and after some debate Regulus has one of his Sylvan bring him a map, and hands it off to Aella. The map denotes a region of Galibar in a circle around Mount Pervanon. He tells her that if Larwen stays in that area, he will leave him and even begrudgingly dispells the mist around the mountain, but also ensures her if leaves that area, he will attack Larwen. After some further discussion, and Regulus probably breaking Aella's heart, Aella leaves.
Aella: Level 3 9 Might left 0 Miracles 2/6 to Level