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Tell me a story of your world...

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Keepers of the Eternal Shadow
Posts: 147
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2016 5:50 pm
Character Name(s): Coraal

Tell me a story of your world...

Post by Coraal »

As with all lovely surprises it happened unexpectedly. Before any other concern could capture his attention, he had been stolen away without preamble, guided to a secluded corner of the City with footfalls accentuated by laughter and the allure of the mysterious; overshadowed entirely by the warmth of the hand holding tightly to his own.

The spot for this clandestine rendezvous had been chosen with the most delicate of care for who could rightly find any measure of scorn with such a romantic gesture when accompanied by a meal prepared and laid out on soft silks set upon lush grass to the backdrop of music provided by the soothing fall of water down myriad falls and set amid the joined light of scented candles and the soft illumination offered by a Sable Moon high above. In a word, it was perfection.

The delicacies prepared were beyond description, each one a newer and more exciting revelation to his palette and the conversation flowed as easily as the spiced, honeyed wine that filled their cups. They spoke of many things, laughing and loving one another with their eyes as much as their words as they reveled in their deep connection. It should come as no surprise that, in that place, his most fervent wish was for each moment to lose meaning and simply last forever. And he was struck then, as he had so often before, by the deep understanding of how truly blessed he was to exist in a state of matrimony with this man. He could live a thousand, thousand lifetimes and never truly deserve him.

As conversation began to lull, after the food was long to digestion and the wine began to wane, that the couple sit close to one another, hands joined and fingers intertwined, gazing at the Sable Moon and simply enjoying the company of one another, that the handsome, dark-haired man turned bearded face towards him. His kind eyes captured the light of the moon and were set to sparkling behind his spectacles as he leaned in, his lips curling into the gentlest of smiles to murmur softly into his ear in a voice more soothing than any song, “Would you tell me a story, peaches? This has been an amazing dream and I’ve wanted to ask you for a while now. I know so little about your world. Would you tell me a story of your home, where you come from?”

The man chuckled softly and shivered in response to the question but more so to the tickling sensation of a bearded chin touching delicate skin. The smile he offered his husband was brilliant to match the Sable Moon above and he lifted his chin ever so slightly in the affirmative as he locked his own gaze with those kind, gentle eyes. His voice, when he spoke, was both reverent and joyous, filled with both pride and gratitude at the asking.

“A tale of home. Of course, nula, and gladly will I share with you. From whence do I come, you ask? The answer is not a complicated one, in truth, though in honor to the ancients I will relate one of the oldest sayings known to my people: There are some dreams from which we never wake, for we are the stuff of dreams far older and more vast than any that have come before, nor any that shall come again.”

And with that small preamble, he looked into the depths of the sky above and began his tale:

“Far removed from the known reaches of the universe, in a place beyond space and time, is an expanse known as the Cradle. It is a place of near tangible potential in the deepest of silence and blanketed beneath the watchful gaze of a billion stars. Masses of mysterious matter drift within and around the space in a sea of unknown energies that flow and course in shades of more color than one can name in cascades that flash from the brilliant to the obscured, and all existing as though in wait.

And at the center of the Cradle, shining like a lone beacon within an endless night, Taa (Tay-AH), home of the One.

We are taught that, before the existence of time, the One began awakened to the joy of existence. For the One is the universe, and the universe is the One. Over long stretches of cosmic existence, the One began to grow disquiet. For it is one thing to recognize existence, it is another entirely to understand that existence: the meaning behind it. And so, the One began to dream. The first dream. And from that dream, that need to understand itself, was born the Seeking.

Possessed of a wisdom more infinite and unknowable than that which we can ever truly understand, the One recognized that for understanding to be possible; new perspectives would be necessary. And so, the One began to break pieces of its vast consciousness and sent them deep into the realms of tangible reality, investing itself into all forms of matter and energy. But nowhere was this investiture greater than in the Cradle.

Taa emerged from unbeing, a manifestation of the first dream, as a world formed around a convergence point of crystallized elemental matter and energy that formed a luminous core brighter and more brilliant than any star. That nexus star, the heart of Taa, expanded in vast veins of crystal that grew and permeated within and through the entirely of the world and suffused it with the soft radiance we so cherish.

The surface of my Taa is dominated by a single large landmass, Tellar, which is surrounded by the mysterious and hidden depths of the argent sea, though many smaller islands dot the oceans of the world like hidden gemstones amidst the water. And as the form of Taa solidified into tangible shape, the pieces of the One, the Val’He, manifested and became that most wonderous of things, life.

The configuration of life on Taa is comprised of various forms of flora, a vast variety of fauna, and creatures that exist in a state between the two, combining elements of both. Indeed, there exist even creatures composed seemingly only of non-organic material, with great stone striders moving in herds upon the mountains, or crystalline insects skittering along forest floors. Jungles and forests, great roving plains, tall mountains are all present upon Taa and offer a wide variety of biomes upon which life took hold and thrived, illuminated always by crystalline outcroppings; the arms of the nexus star. And this is, along with the light of the ever-watchful stars above, is the only light we know. Ours is a world of near constant “dawn” or “dusk” with light ebbing and flowing in cycles of great illumination and deep shadow; though in the shadowed hours, bioluminescent plants glow with their own song of light for us to share.

Over time, life grew in complexity as the Val’He permeated deeper within and evolved until, in reflection of the first dream that created our home and all life upon it, a pathway was provided to sentience and a people emerged from the primordial landscape of a pristine world. Our shape, our form, was equally a reflection of the first dream, provided with the means and capabilities to carry out existence as envisioned by the One.

We were a simple people in those ages, learning to take our first steps in a haze of memory and the fragments of a dream too large for us to comprehend. But that dream, the Seeking, guided us and continues to guide us to this very moment. It is from the Seeking that civilization arose and our people, the Teliri came into existence. And we remain simple in many ways. For while we do have some great cities we call home, the majority of the Teliri live in small villages that dot the landscapes of Tellar.

As I have said, the sole purpose of each member of the Teliri is the Seeking. For we each recognize the existence of our Val’He and listen as it whispers hidden truths to steer us along the pathways before us. And it is the Seeking that shaped the very foundations and fundamentals of our society and gave each of us the purpose from which our Seeking would take shape.

We are born to our people, and to our people are we kindred. We have parents, but each child belongs to the whole and the closeness of this unity, of having many parents and caregivers, has created a deep and abiding unity within the society of our people. When we are children, we are taught by all members of our society, learning the many areas of knowledge available to us as provided by the ages. As we approach maturity, we enter a dreamlike state called the Calling and it is there, in this place between dreaming and awake, that our Val’He reveals itself to us fully and guides us to our Seeking. Once awakened, and with fresh understanding of our purpose, we then move to undergo more extensive education with those who share our path, though always is our path uniquely our own. Many are the paths the Val’He provide, and these paths give depth and purpose to each member of society.

The Za’haan are those whose interests lay in the physical, and the exploration of possibility of form and structure. They create and forge, building our homes from the living stone and plants of our world, all within the harmony of nature. Truly, to view one of our cities is know that there is no division between nature and civilization, for both are one and the same. And it is from the Za’haan that we have learned that the entirety of the natural world is our home.

From the Frelle, those who directly with nature and know the secret whispering tongues of plants and animals, our agricultural knowledge has been obtained. Herbalists, conservationists, and those familiar with the till who grow our food, tend to the animals we keep, and who live nearly entirely within the boundaries of nature, teaching us the harmony of the natural rhythms and cycles of Taa.

Those who are curious, who are touched by the need to know in echo of the One, are the Bre’mi. They engage in endless exploration and experimentation on the world around us, researchers and thinkers who expand our knowledge of Taa and the universe beyond through trial and error, careful projects and provide for us the understanding of mathematics, physics, and many other disciplines of science, though all conducted within the harmony of the world and never straying beyond or apart from it.

But the Teliri are not without a sense of balance, and many are the tales and songs upon which we base our histories and understanding of our past so that we may not forget ourselves to the future. The Wyr’re are those who revel in story and song, living the history of our world and our society, and sharing their stories with all. They are possessed of an unbridled spirit of exploration and wander the world, from village to city and back, learning and sharing, living the dream of the One through near constant motion and a desire to experience as much as they desire to know. The Wyr’re, truly, are the living memory of our people.

As wondrous a world as is Taa, it is not without many dangers for no place is ever truly safe if a species or peoples has any hope of evolution and an avoidance of stagnation. Many are the creatures of Taa that prey upon the villages of our people, some of which are truly fearsome and seemingly the reflection of nightmarish moments from within the first dream. And it is for this reason that the Xhell are as important as they are. Warriors, defenders, protectors, and keepers of peace, these are those who view the world through the lens of strategy and tactics, and who utilized the knowledge of the other Seekings to gain understanding of marital power and the strength of arms. For it is the Xhell who stand before the darkness and those creatures who would do harm to all and provide the security and safety that allows us to continue onwards in peace and harmony.

You may have noticed, as this story has unfolded, that I have neglected my own Seeking. But I wished most to honor the others as they are the foundation of our society. The body and mind and memory of our people. Which brings me at last to the final Seeking.

The Pa’uqo are the rarest and least numerous Seeking of the Teliri for we are chosen by the One to walk a path beyond the realm of the physical and venture forth into the ephemeral and untouchable reaches of existence. When we are children, but before we reach maturity, we begin to dream vivid images of things impossible to understand, vistas so fantastic that to attempt to decipher them would break a mind and leave it in madness. Sadly, this has happened many times in many ages. Once the visions begin to appear, we are taken to the highest mountain, the Val’haan, a sacred place where it is believed the One can hear us clearly, and there we enter our Calling. But this is a different sort of Calling for the dreamlike state in which we exist takes months to complete, at time in which we are drawn into direct communion with the One, and when our bodies cease to function. Aye, we pass from the physical world for there is no other method by which one can touch the One as the Val’He rejoins with it before returning.

When our eyes finally open, our view of the world around us is forever altered. Our bodies changed through our resurrection and our Val’He possessed of direct understanding and knowledge of the One. More so than any other Seeking. We are given access to methods of interaction with the physical and spiritual world, a mysticism some might deem “magic” but is simply a falling away of barriers that provides a unique perspective and the skills and capabilities that come with them.

The purpose of the Pa’uqo is to forever serve and guide the people of the Teliri, never acting as leaders of the people, though positions of leadership can be attained to better serve the purpose of guiding others and encouraging their Seekings. We are the Voice the One, interpreting the first dream and the continuing echoes of that dream, and walk between the worlds of living and returned to provide for the spiritual needs of the people. It is from the Pa’uqo that the physical sciences, the natural sciences, and the study of arms has blurred with the mystical. And where the stories and songs of our people, once only simply vibrations within the air, have become tangible imageries and visions shared within the minds of those who listen and rejoice in the sharing.

And it is through the unity and cohesion of the Seeking, of the joining of our minds and Val’He, that our people have continued to thrive and grow in a state of harmony and purpose for many ages now untold. We explore the ever-evolving world around us, for that is the nature of a dream, while we explore worlds within and beyond. We explore ourselves, our lives, all with the same purpose for which we were created and for which we exist: to gain understanding of ourselves, and the universe around us, the One, for when comes our time for our Val’He to return and rejoin that which is greater than all of us.

Taa is a paradise, containing incredible wonders that defy imagination, and horrors dark enough to shatter your mind. And always and forever, do the Teliri work and grow and prosper as we Seek ever close to gain our understanding and return to the One.

For the One is the universe, and the universe is the One. And we are the dream of the One. For there are some dreams from which we never wake, for we are the stuff of dreams far older and more vast than any that have come before, nor any that shall come again.”

He turns once again to look upon the handsome face of his husband, reaching up to lay a soft, warm land on his cheek, running his fingertips along his bearded jawline and enjoying the coarseness of the hair found there. His voice, full of serenity and peace, speaks softly, “Was that tale to your liking, nula?”

His handsome man blinks a few times as a smile grows on his lips to match the one being offered. His hand settles on the hand of his husband set upon his face and he nods with a smile, “That was an incredible story, peaches! Thank you for sharing it with me.” For a moment they simply look into one another’s eyes, surrounded by the peacefulness of the location and the company of each other.

Suddenly, the handsome man jerks as his eyes widen, an expression of shock crossing his features. His arms begin to flail as his voice raises slightly in volume in with no small amount of incredulity as he exclaims, “Peaches! I knew you came from an interesting place, but how in the hell do you manage to live day to day on a home like that?”

The man laughs merrily and, eyes twinkling with the light of the stars and the Sable Moon above, suddenly pounces to tackle his husband, knocking his spectacles off and gently pinning him to the silks beneath them. He leans forward, his long gossamer hair falling forward to curtain their faces as he lowers and gently brushes his lips with those of his husband, and whispers softly, “That, nula, is a tale for another time…”
No one saves us but ourselves.
No one can and no one may.
We ourselves must walk the path.
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