forum RoW shenanigans and scenes
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@Reblod flag

My little hub for posting random scenes, clips, and dialogues from my stories (and sometimes lore when I'm feeling it). Not just RoW but that's my main project so it's the one you'll see the most from. Nothing posted here is guaranteed to remain canon or be included in the actual story. Also, these are all drafts so apologies for any weird phrasing, lazy or confusing worldbuilding, and bad grammar.

Here's the story titles in case anyone is actually reading this:

Rogues of War (RoW)
Winged Warriors (WW)
A Winter's Storm (WS)
A Heretic's Guide to Death (HG)

And summaries because I realise that probably provides a bit of context:

RoW - An ancient prophecy, old minds burned with corruption, a great war that shields the darkest of secrets. Prehistoric wounds resurface, sparking anger as old as time. What threatens to follow is a calamity so terrible the realms of the gods would be shaken by it. A fire that would turn snow to ash, mountains to dust, and oceans to steam.
A story of vengeance and madness.

WW - The birth of the end of an age. The greatest war the continent of Meidas has ever seen. A young arvin seeks to escape the shadows of her youth. But shadows have a habit of following that which creates them.

WS - The dawn of the Yrnan Empire. A time of imperial conquest and destruction. The heir to this blood-red throne is forced to flee assassins and delves into the treacherous, violent world beyond. A small, seemingly insignificant alliance forms. One to change the future of Meidas for better or for worse.

HG - In an era of change and development, one mortal seeks the secrets the gods so fiercely protect. The secrets of life and of death. A dangerous pursuit in this theocratic time.

@Reblod flag

RoW dialogue clip between Mara and Kado (1st arc)

“It’s in Fletan. An old language spoken by the arvins. It took me a long time to translate it.”
“What does it say?”
Mara opened the cover and pointed to a roughly scrawled script. Runes that Kado was not familiar with. “This journal belonged to one Commander Lyris Iliahas, a soldier in Dumoros during the Meidanese war in the second era.”
“Have I heard that name before?” Kado tilted his head to one side.
Mara turned to look at him. “Have you?”
“Wasn’t she a queen? Maybe she was named after her?”
Mara grunted. “No.” She flicked through a few of the ancient, yellowed pages. “Commander Lyris Iliahas was Queen Lyris Iliahas, the Rebel Queen. The arvin who betrayed her kingdom. She became Câzuneca. Fallen. Corrupted even though she was simply trying to help people.”
“So, what? Don’t help people or you’ll become corrupt?”
“I think what you should take from this is don’t waste your magic on other people, no matter how much you might want to. It will only do you harm.”
“No arguing.”
“Don’t be childish.”
Kado pouted.

@Reblod flag

RoW office scene with Moukib and Kado (3rd arc)
(note: for some reason the <> dialogue thingos don't work sometimes so I'll replace them with –)

Kado hissed as he slammed the last drawer shut. Nothing. Of course there was nothing. He tried to tell them that Yrrga wasn’t stupid enough to leave such sensitive information lying around. Kado paused for a moment and listened. It was a little too quiet for his liking. He blew the hair out of his eyes before making his way around the desk and towards the door.
A sudden presence made Kado pause. The gentle hum of magic rippling through the air. Kado reached for a knife.
<Please don’t.> Moukib sounded weary. There was no edge nor bite to his words. Kado’s grip on the knife loosened.
“What do you want?” Kado only turned halfway, just enough so that the edge of Moukib’s form was visible.
<I suppose you don’t want to know what will happen when you walk out that door?>
“I guess I’m about to find out.” He continued towards the door.

(dialogue missing here because I'm lazy)

“I thought you were supposed to be working against us?
<Us? Since when were you working with anyone but yourself?>
Kado’s arm was moving before he had a chance to think. The blade glinted, darting forwards. But then it jerked to a halt. Pale, slender fingers were wrapped around Kado’s wrist. Another knife stabbed towards Moukib. He caught that one too. Kado jerked backwards but Moukib was far, far stronger than him. Effortlessly, he forced Kado’s arms back and leaned in close, eyes still locked to his.
“Don’t,” Moukib muttered. His voice was soft and smooth like syrup, his breath fanning Kado’s face.
Now that was just unfair. How did one get the upper hand on someone who knew everything? Kado's eyes wandered before his gaze flicked up to Moukib’s with a smirk. Moukib narrowed his eyes a moment before Kado’s knee slammed into his groin.
Moukib’s firm grip on Kado’s wrists relaxed and he slipped away as Moukib stumbled a few steps forwards.
“Didn’t see that coming now did you, asshole?” Kado sniggered.
-That hurt.- Was the immortal’s response.
Kado lifted an eyebrow at the irritation on Moukib’s face as he glared at him. “You know, you’re kinda hot when you’re mad.”
Moukib looked away, the ragged cloth hanging from his body flickering. Kado relaxed his stance, swinging one of his knives casually.
“What was that anyway?” His voice dropped to a taunting, conspiratorial tone. “Were you trying to seduce me?”
Moukib frowned at the ground, seemingly deep in thought, then looked back up at Kado.
-I was trying to intimidate you.-
“Oh…well there’s your problem, I didn’t even know you were trying to intimidate me,” Kado said, gesturing to Moukib with the blade.
-I…can see that.-

@Reblod flag

RoW the intimidation saga continues (3rd arc)

“Why do you always have to get so close?” Kado questioned.
-This is how you intimidate someone.-
“Okay,” Kado said, taking a step back with his hands up, “you really need to work on the whole intimidation thing.”
-It’s still not intimidating is it?-
“Not at all.”
Moukib looked put out. Even the ever-shifting trains of cloth hanging off his body drooped. Kado found himself wondering how on Korrei this creature was a god. He sighed.
“It’s not that bad, you just need some work. You’ve seen intimidating people before, yes?”
-There is no one I find intimidating.-
“Not even Mara?”
Moukib shook his head.
“Well shit…not even me?”
Moukib narrowed his eyes. Kado wasn’t sure if it was a thoughtful expression or an irritated one. Amazing how the two intertwine, he thought.
-No. If it’s any consolation, out of all living beings, I find you the most annoying.-
“The most, huh?” Kado quirked an eyebrow. “Shall I take that as a compliment?”
Moukib only released a vaguely patronising breath.

@Reblod flag

WS "A nest of rats" dialogue with Ahmik, Yara, and Orien

“I’ve ‘eard of that eltran city. Talri’alrina or somethin’,” Yara said, leaning against the railing.
“Alrinalla, technically,” Orien muttered.
“Ha!” Ahmik sidled up closer. “Talri’alrina. More like an’alrina dost vuls.
Orien flinched inwardly but forced himself to relax , hoping his discomfort didn’t show. He glanced down at Ahmik who was glaring out across the ocean. There was no humour in his expression. Noticing his staring, Ahmik caught Orien’s eye and had the heart to look apologetic.
“Right…” Yara seemed to notice the sudden tension. “What does’at mean, then?”
Ahmik had returned his gaze to the sea seemingly uninterested in continuing the conversation.
Orien hesitated. “A nest of rats…it’s a common phrase used by the lower classes when they have something against the nobility that live in the capital.”
“Common, uh? Nobility must be shit then if it’s common.”
“I hadn’t thought of it that way.”
Yara started as if she’d just remembered something. “Shit, not you though! Yer great, Orien. Ya know…for an Yrnan.”
“Thanks, Yara. That makes me feel a lot better.”
“That’s why we’re ‘elping ye. If you were like Leandros we’d ‘ave thrown ye to the sharks.”
“He’d drown before a shark got to him. It’d be kinder if he was thrown to a flock of dragons,” Ahmik said, a small if distracted smile on his face.

@Reblod flag

RoW wandering Mara and Kado (2nd arc?)

Nothing. Nothing at all for as far as the eye could see. Only stark white snow. Not even Kado’s special cloak could protect him from the full brunt of the freezing ice winds blowing down from the Plains. Mara, who was walking a couple paces ahead of him, seemed to be having no trouble whatsoever. Kado tugged his cloak tighter around himself and tried to repress the shivers.
“I can hear your teeth chattering from here,” Mara said, barely loud enough to be heard over the howling gale. “You’d better not die on me, Dortorres.”
“No promises.” His lungs ached with the effort to talk.
She finally turned around and regarded his pathetic, hunched form with an apathetic gaze. Kado noticed a slight hesitation in her next stride but only continued onwards.
Time dragged painfully slowly and as it did Kado only shook more. He summoned some fire into his palms and held it within the confines of his cloak but he couldn’t reach deeply enough into his Vaitassien for it to make much difference. It was warm but Meidas’ eternal cold had sunk its fangs so deep into his flesh that it seemed to be crushing his bones.
Mara finally stopped so suddenly that Kado walked right into her. Only then did he realise how much heat emanated from her body. He didn’t bother moving away.
“Look. Do you see that?”
Kado peeked out from behind the tall rotori and squinted into the blizzard. For a moment, he didn’t see anything and was about to say so when his eyes caught on a dark shape in the distance. It was blurry and impossible to make out what it was.
“W-what is it?”
“I’m not sure.”
She summoned her sword and began making her way towards it, footsteps light and silent. Kado followed with considerably less grace. It was hard to control your legs when they were as good as icicles. They edged closer. Whatever it was hadn’t moved at all.
“Are,” Kado shuddered, “Are we sneaking up on a rock?”
Mara glared at him. “Sneaking? With the noise you’re making?”

@Reblod flag

RoW the Traveller's introduction (1st arc)

He spun around to see a figure striding towards him. Brown furs and ragged cloth were haphazardly sewn together to form a crude outfit with a heavy fur cloak latched across her shoulders and an old bag hanging at her side. Her boots were worn with years of travel and faint lines at the edges of her mouth hinted at a long life. An oversized hood shielded her eyes. Kado had only ever seen the lower part of her face in all the years he’d known her.
“I didn’t do anything, I swear!” Kado took a step back, hands raised in surrender.
The Traveller’s mouth curled into a warm smile. “It’s not you who is in trouble little one.” A calloused hand reached out and rested on his shoulder. “At least, not yet.”
Kado smirked. “So, who ruined your stall this time?”
“Pesky Fenris,” she grumbled. “I see nothing but booze and bad decisions in his future.” She turned down the street. Kado followed.

@Reblod flag

RoW Traveller, Kado, Fenris, and Adda (1st arc)

“Still out is he?” The Traveller said as they approached.
Alva shifted to glance at Fenris as if to say ‘yes’.
“Tsk. Spooked her half to death that boy.” The Traveller ran a hand over Alva’s pelt.
Kado crouched down in front of Fenris. He was a qelna like Kado with the typical bronze-coloured skin of the Senkrenese and dark brown hair. On a good day he looked like a respectable member of Paget’s nobility. On a bad day…well. Clearly, he had a rough night. Dirt was smeared on one cheek; his nice clothes were torn up as well as his palms and he had what looked like vomit in his usually well cared for hair. Kado grimaced and gave him a poke. No response.
“Ah, there you are.”
Kado looked up at the Traveller and followed her gaze. Striding towards them was yet another familiar face. Their pale skin was flushed in the cold air, horns curled around pointed ears. Their coppery hair was mussed and falling out of its braid.
“Kado, what are you doing here?” Adda said as they arrived.
“Funny you asked, you see I was just going on a walk because-“
“Ah,” Adda lifted a finger to silence him. “I don’t need a narrative.”
“I’ll tell you later.”
They gave Kado a withering glare before crouching down beside him.
“We should get him home.”
“And good riddance,” the Traveller spoke up. “Tell him if he comes near my stall again I’ll steal his other kidney.”
“Sure thing, Traveller,” Kado said as he and Adda hoisted the unconscious Fenris up. His head lolled and he muttered something incoherent. “Oh good! He’s alive.”
Adda rolled their eyes and together they half carried, half dragged him back up the Coll.

@Reblod flag

RoW - Bronte, Kado and a captured Keran (3rd arc)

This hallway was lined by metal doors similar to the one they had just entered through. They were all empty except for the one at the far end.
“We couldn’t spare the soldiers. And no one wanted to volunteer.”
Bronte took out a different key when they reached the final door. She drew in a breath of stale air. Kado was watching her with an inscrutable expression. She jammed the key into the lock and twisted. It screeched open much easier than the last one. Light flooded the room, empty besides a chair bolted to the ground and a man bound in chains.
“A bit of an overkill, no? He’s not that scary.”
“We can’t take risks.”
“Well, now I know why you left him unguarded.”
Keran’s body was almost entirely obscured by thick chains. His arms were strapped down the sides of the chair, hands wrapped in several layers of cloth. A blindfold pressed against his eyelids so that he couldn’t open them. His long white hair fell loose down his chest and back, almost brushing against the floor. He had shifted slightly when they entered but went still soon after. Bronte could see the tension in his limbs.
“What exactly were you hoping to get out of him?”
Bronte stared at Kado disbelievingly. “You’re joking, right? He’s the second-in-command. He knows things. Things that we can use.”
“Oh right. I almost forgot about your little war.”
“Well, torture isn’t really my thing. And all of this,” he gestured vaguely, “is unnecessary.”
“You plan to free me?”
Bronte stiffened when Keran spoke. She had never heard him speak before. It took her a moment to understand what he said through his thick accent and slightly slurred words. Bronte glanced at Kado who was wearing that smile that clearly stated that he was up to something.
“Please don’t free him,” she whispered.
“Don’t worry, I don’t plan to. This is far too gratifying.”

@Reblod flag

RoW - random Mara descriptions because I felt like it

First meeting-
A tall, dark figure rose from the smoke. Firelight glinted off menacing clawed gauntlets and a chill ran down Kado’s spine as their gaze landed on him. The figure’s movements were eerily graceful despite their looming height. Every step taken was calculated, every motion purposeful. The instinct to run far away from this person was near overwhelming. A splash of ice-cold water on hot skin. Beneath a hood and a mask, the figure stared at him, taking one step closer and then another. And then they leapt, crashing into a camp soldier. Kado took the opportunity to flee.

Detailed description-
Pale skin that was as sickly as the snow; bruised, heavy bags beneath her eyes that told of many a sleepless night; blue eyes as cold and unfeeling as ice, all framed by matted, greasy black hair that looked more like strands of ink dripping down her face. It all gave her an almost corpse-like appearance. Not to mention her long, drooping ears that twitched at every little sound and the scar that marred the entire lower half of her face. She looked peaceful. There were lines of age at her mouth and eyes that softened her expression. But she was dangerous. No one lived that long for no reason.

@Reblod flag

WW - First paragraph

The ground was mud. Slick and cold and dyed with red. Crimson and brown swirled together like eddies in a river, stirred by the hundreds of feet struggling for purchase.
Lyris pushed a clawed hand into the slush. It was almost like liquid ice sucking at her flesh, pulling her down into the Abyss. For a moment she saw it. Dark and airless. The deepest, most terrible places imaginable. No sky. No sun. No wind. Her hand hit solid ground. She drew in a breath of frigid air and pushed herself up. Her knees were soaked and filthy, boots covered in grime and gore. One blood-splattered wing flared outwards as Lyris stumbled to her feet. She swung herself around, mud dragging at her legs. A flash of steel sliced through the air where Lyris had just been standing. The battlefield roared to life around her. A figure came into focus. Tall with pointed ears that gave them a telling silhouette. The sword darted forward again. Lyris lifted an arm and the blade glanced off her bracer. She winced. The eltra saw its chance. Steel clashed with aggressive fervour. Lyris parried, slowly being pushed back until the mud turned to firm earth and her back met the rough surface of a tree. She ducked and a wing flung outwards. It caught the eltra behind the knees. The eltra doubled over but was already getting to its feet. Lyris jumped on them and dug her metal-clad claws into their throat. They writhed beneath her and, with a final shudder, went still.

@Reblod flag

RoW - Just some Keran

It was one of those mornings. Cold of course. It was always cold. But there was something else in the air. A shift that Keran had learnt meant that the seasons had changed. Late as usual. Winter had dragged on for months not that it ever really ended. The natives didn’t seem to notice. Not only did the air shift but the people did too. They always seemed a little less bitter. A little less unpleasant. They didn’t show it but Keran could feel their anticipation. Keran barely felt the difference. Maybe the sun shone a little more. Maybe the snow was less thick and the winds were a little less freezing.
He drew in a breath of that frigid Meidanese air. It clung to his throat and lungs, ice shards digging into his insides. He fought the violent shivers that he had grown so used to in the frozen north. That was one thing, one little thing, that Keran liked about Meidas. The air was clear and sharp. Clean and light as freshly fallen snow. Every breath he took was meditative. Grounding. All pointless thought and worry was washed away to leave behind a plain truthfulness.
Sometimes, he understood the Meidanese’s ways. Their brash, brutal ways. They were the ice and the racing winds. The unrelenting frost that gathered and clung to every surface. The glacial seas of unfathomable depth that pounded against the jagged cliffs and coarse sands that surrounded their home. Sometimes, he found himself wondering how that would feel. To co-exist with winter just as they did. But by then the sun’s feeble light had faded and the bitter cold had sunken deep within his bones.
Keran released one last breath of white and watched as it dissipated into the wind. Then he returned back to his room, the warmth of which could never truly chase away the chill of this frozen wasteland.

@Reblod flag

RoW - One of the many possible aftermaths of the story, a more light-hearted one

Kado set the delicate ceramics on the table. They were pretty little things, painted with exotic patterns and plants. Some things he had yet to even see. And so fragile too. He could have crushed one in his hand if he wanted. Moukib was watching him with an inscrutable expression. Judging him no doubt. Kado lifted the pot but it was so hot he almost dropped it.
-I believe you’re meant to hold it by the handle.-
Kado raised an eyebrow at him but didn’t reply. He brushed off his hands and sat back into the cushions. It was barely cool enough for tea. It could be drunk cold but Kado no longer had the means to make it so.
“So, how’s Estis this time of year?”
-It makes me uncomfortable when your try to do small talk with me.- Moukib reached out for his cup.
“It makes me uncomfortable when you speak telepathically.”
Moukib paused and looked at him for a beat. “I didn’t realise I was doing it.”
Kado just smiled. “They still haven’t let you into the Void?”
“Well, not exactly.” Kado squinted at Moukib as he dumped half the dish of sugar into his tea. “It still takes a lot of energy to come down here but they’ve stopped trying to hide the Void from me. They’re trying to convince themselves that they only kept me in that godsforsaken place because I was trying to end the world.”
“Ah. So they’ve stopped trying to lie to you.”
“Of course not.” Moukib sipped from the cup, not even wincing at the temperature. Kado gave a pointed look at the significantly smaller pile of sugar. “What? It’s not like you’re having any.”
“Maybe I will.”
He certainly would not. The tea was already far too sweet. Everything here was too sweet. And hot. And spicy.
“What I don’t understand is why they bother. You’re more powerful than they are. You know far more than they could dream of. Would it not be more beneficial to be nice to you?”
Moukib peered at him over the rim. “Are you hearing yourself?”
“You weren’t exactly pleasant when we first met.”
“That’s completely different. You were working with Mara and I hadn’t known you for several hundred thousand years!”
Kado scoffed and sipped at his tea. He grimaced. It took some effort to swallow it down. The warmth of it settled in his stomach in an uncomfortable way. Moukib was watching him.
“Are you unhappy here in Alanys?”
“Nope.” He stretched his arms over his head and laid back. “I’m still adjusting a bit. I never thought I’d miss Meidas but I do. It doesn’t snow here. It’s so dusty and bright. Every day is an overload of senses and the languages hurt my head. I kind of feel bad for making fun of Keran.”
“And yet you still do.”
“I don’t feel that bad. It does feel good to speak my native language with you, though.”
Moukib switched to Norinin with a small smile. “Maybe you should keep practising then.”
“No! Stop, not during tea time. We speak Meidanese languages at tea time.”

@Reblod flag

RoW - Mara's chapters gradually stop making sense (3rd arc)

“I don’t understand, Iri.”
The day was dark. Every breath was choked with smoke and ash. Mara sat, her legs splayed out in front of her. A pile of soot sat in her hand, slowly falling between her fingers. The soldiers were waiting some distance behind, no doubt watching the great wall of fire in the distance.
Iri stepped closer, enough for Mara to catch his quizzical expression.
“This doesn’t make sense. I don’t understand why it’s happening.”
“This is your great work. What you have been working towards for centuries, remember? The fall of Korrei. You did this,” he said gently.
Mara lifted her head and stared at the inferno burning, consuming, ravaging – unquenchable. She wasn’t there. Not really. There was no heat. Not from within nor from without. Was it cold? Was she cold? She looked back down. It was almost as if her mind was smothered with smoke just like the sky. Poisonous, acrid smoke that ate and bit at what she had left. She wanted to run or snarl or bite back but where would she go? Where would her teeth land?
“No,” Mara muttered. “No, Iri. I did not do this. Why would I?”
“Because you must. There is nothing else. Not for me or for you, my love.”
There was something in his voice. Mara couldn’t search her mind for the answer. It was too hazed. She breathed but there was no air. A memory clawed to the surface, tore her from the present. More smoke; more fire. Scorching pain clinging to her face and shoulder. Shouts. Or screams. There was little difference then.
Even as she watched people burn. Even as she ran, dodging magic and arrows. She wasn’t meant to be there. But there was nowhere to go. Mara felt her body, a different body, lurch forward. She felt her breath, ragged and hoarse. But still she watched herself run. Vertigo spun the fragments of herself and her stomach turned. Something touched her. Or someone. But there was no one around. She lashed out, her clawed fingers catching something soft. A distant sound reached her ears.
At some point she had started running. Or had she already been running? The air in her lungs was clear. Had she been asleep? She blinked and she saw trees and snow and mountains in the distance. Pain hovered deep in her bones. Warm but uncomfortable. Thirsty, hungry, exhausted. Mara allowed herself to collapse, head still spinning. She lay there, staring up at the blue sky.
What is the last thing I remember?
A stupid question. An impossible answer. Mara closed her eyes but wasn’t sure if she ever truly slept.

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RoW - Kado's chapters also slowly descend into madness (arc 3)

Was the silence worse than the noise?
Noise was energy. It was life. Quiet or loud. Noise was a sign of existence. It was normal. But it ground against his ears. It rasped against his mind like a file on soft wood, wearing down his sanity until it was but thin strings barely holding themselves together. Noise shore his mind down to its roots. Its twisted, clawing roots.
But silence; silence was something else entirely. It was unnatural. Abnormal. It was hollow and expansive and endless. It was oblivion. It ate at Kado’s mind. It bit and chewed with agonising placidity as he lay helpless in the all-consuming nothing. In silence, he suffered, utterly alone.
Or did it? Did either truly do anything? Or was it always like this? Kado noticed his hands were shaking though they didn’t feel like his. Didn’t look like his. He let his head fall into them. They held the fragile bone and flesh and blood of his head and the frayed ropes of Kado within. Ropes that he so desperately and pathetically tried to mend – but his hands; they were bloody and sore and he felt the ropes slipping away, one by one. And he watched them. He watched them fly into the darkness. Felt them leave him, felt the emptiness.
And as they left, he fractured. He, Kado. It was no longer right to be called that. He was a consciousness that was no one. There was no Kado. Only lightning and hunger. Hunger that rasped, twisted, clawed, and consumed. Oblivion waited for him, patiently. It knew that he could not resist forever. And, gods, did he know it too.

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Lore - An in-world writing from an unknown author (The legend of the prophet)

I shall recount to you a time from long ago. It is a tale lost to aeons; the since unheard tale of mortalkind’s enlightenment. The time that I speak of was a time of great turmoil. A time of hunger and decay. This was before the rise of the great cities of our age. Before the crop fields that feed us and the steel that protects us. When the raw elements of a furious world plundered the land with bitter resentment and mortals were left to cower in the wake of its destructive force. This, our great land, was white as bone and jagged as ice. The dark pits of Gol itself hid humbled from the nothing of snow and frost.
But then, from the mists that swirled and muttered of death and loss, came two eyes the colour of blood. And the eyes spoke to the cowering mortals.
“Do not fear, ice children. There is much to know.”
The eyes would then speak of the stone that lay beneath their feet. The beasts that lurked in the shadows. Growth and rebirth, knowledge and power. Of warmth and of beautiful magic. And the mortals, cowering no more, grew full on the words of the eyes. Their hunger ebbed away and the warmth that followed roused their minds from their cursed slumber. The tales that lay heavy on their awakened thoughts fuelled their fingers and the mortals, powerful as the elements, gave life to the eyes’ stories. It was not until the work was done did the eyes finally blink away; from Meidas and memory alike.
And this, dear reader, is the true origin of the mortal mind. A clever thing sparked by the fire of knowledge. And the eyes, those of the purest red, are said to still watch us. But, as the story goes, they are gone from this realm. To where it is not known. What is known is that, by the gods, we could surely use such a gift once more.

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RoW - Potential first paragraph of the potential prologue, I still have no clue what I'm doing

The eyes of Vutenos were watching. Through the expanse of inky darkness, dashed through with brilliant purples, pinks, and greens, they peered, blinking down at the shadowed lands below. Thousands of them, all shining with a cold, distant light. Not quite so radiant as the halved night-moon who set the landscape aglow with Her silver lustre. Mara, small beneath the Void sky, stared back at the many eyes. She stood very still for several long minutes before she turned and fixed her cold gaze to the crumbling building before her. An ancient temple of some sort. Coloured glass windows once affixed to iron inlays had been shattered and lost beneath the snow and frozen earth. Stone walls, once carved with intricate murals, had been eroded until it seemed as if the stone was perfectly smooth. Two heavy wooden doors hung precariously from their hinges and the interior was dark. Too dark for such a clear night. Again, she stood there for a while, her thoughts adrift, before a frigid breeze tossed her tangled black hair into her eyes. She blinked, remembering where she was, and stepped forwards, into the ruins.

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RoW - Prologue snippet

“What is your purpose here?” She questioned in Serroran. He bared his teeth and strained to pull her arm away. Mara cocked her head to one side. “Did Bronn send you?”
He stilled at that, glaring at her with the venom of a man who knew his life was over. “You are nothing, Ubrikai,” he spat. “Nothing compared to him. You will die by his hand.”
“I was unaware of this, doubtful as it is. But I’ll take your word for it. Any more insight you would like to share?”
“You are one. We are many.”
Mara’s lips parted, just barely showing her sharp teeth. She leaned closer. “No,” she whispered, eyes glowing softly. The man shuddered as her claws sunk into his flesh. Blood welled and poured across the metal of her gauntlet, the scent filling her nose and clouding her mind. “I am fire.”

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RoW - this shit just comes to me and it's usually kado and keran being disasters

He was sitting there on Kado’s bed, pulling on a pair of woollen socks. He was wearing nothing but a shift. A rather short one that had ridden up to his knees and ever so often he would move in a way that would show just a little bit more. Suddenly, the ceiling was very interesting. Now that he thought about it, so was the floor.
“I suppose I should thank you,” Keran said as he smoothed out the socks. “You can die faster out here than in the…ah, I don’t believe you have a word for it. The sand plains? Well, I- I suppose you wouldn’t know much about that.”
“No, not really.” Kado narrowed his eyes at a tiny gem that he must have overlooked by his desk. “What’s your word for it? These sand plains?”
“Oesiné. They’re a bit like your snow plains but hot as fire and dry.”
Kado reasoned that the image he had in his head of these oesiné were most likely unrealistic but he couldn’t help it. Visions of a fiery, scorched landscape entered his mind. Smoke rising from the sand and a thousand suns blowing heat from above. His lips quirked up.
“I want to see one.”
“That’s what you want to see? Out of the entirety of the southern lands? An empty, hot wasteland that will most certainly kill you in a few hours?”
“Oh, absolutely.”
Kado looked up to see Keran giving him a flat look.
“Of course you do,” he sighed and stretched.
Kado’s eyes treacherously slid down and he felt his face flush. He was beginning to think that maybe Keran was doing that on purpose.

@Reblod flag

RoW - back at it again with kado/keran brainrot i swear it's not the only thing I write

Keran couldn’t help the breathless laugh that escaped his lungs. What was it that was so intoxicating about this? Kado, the falling night, the freezing wind rushing past them as they barrelled down the empty streets. The light was golden. It set Kado’s hair on fire. Keran looked away before he tripped again.
“Where are you taking me?” Keran yelled above the wind.
“If I was going to tell you I would have told you already.”
“You’re awful, you know.”
“I know.” Kado glanced back at him, laughter dancing like magic in his eyes.
Keran’s lips inched treacherously into a smile.

@Reblod flag

RoW - I HAVE WRITTEN OVER 6000 WORDS IN A WEEK AAAAAAAAAH anyway some dialogue from our favourite crime syndicate

“Are we really only considering these four? What about the rest of them? Look, this one wants to ‘encourage diplomatic relations with war-favouring nations’.” She snorted. “What a good idea. That’ll bring Senkrei to its knees for sure.”
“We don’t want to bring Senkrei to its knees. Just stick to the assignment for the love of Diu.” Fade went to snatch the list out of Larsa’s hands but it was jerked nimbly away.
“Well I agree with Adda. They’re smart. I’m sure they’ve thought it out through and through. Right, Adda?” Larsa quirked an eyebrow at Adda.
“While I encourage the use of one’s own brain, yes, I have thought it out. Thank you for noticing,” Adda gave Larsa a decidedly fictitious half-smile. Larsa winked.

@Reblod flag

RoW - Adda attempts to warn Kado, the mischief man

“Adda. I wasn’t expecting to see you again so soon. Is something wrong?”
Adda flexed their fingers and gestured for Kado to follow. They found a quieter spot out of the way and turned to face him. “I didn’t originally intend to tell you this because I know it will only cause more problems but you’re my friend and you deserve to at least be aware of these things.”
Kado felt suddenly uneasy. “What are you talking about?”
“There’s a lot going on right now.”
“Yes. I know.”
“No, you don’t. There’s more going on than you and most people are aware of. Things are just…really weird at the moment. It’s not a good idea to be reckless or stupid, get it?”
“No, what do you mean? Where’s this all coming from? You can’t just make a big deal out of telling me something and then not explain it.”
Adda glanced around and sighed deeply. “I’ll tell you what I know but only if you promise not to ask any more questions.”
Kado held their eyes for a moment then shrugged. “Okay. I promise.”
“There are people – very dangerous people – who have a lot of ideas right now. These people are using the election to their advantage and they are everywhere. I don’t know exactly what they’re planning but I do know they have their eyes set on the nobility of Senkrei. Kado, you have to be so careful. Don’t trust anyone. Keep your head down. I’m still trying to figure out what’s going on so for the time being you’re just going to have to be sensible. Do you understand?”
He said nothing for a while, just looking at Adda. He couldn’t quite discern what he was feeling. It felt as if a bucket of ice water had been thrown over him and the cold had numbed his mind. A part of him wanted to dismiss it as a joke or a fantasy but this was Adda.
“Are you in danger?” Kado hushed.
Adda seemed to collect themself. “I think we’re all in danger. And I said no more questions.”
“This…is a lot to take in at once. It feels like I’m dreaming.”
“I’m sorry. And I’m sorry that I don’t have much more to tell you. But you just had to be aware. Please, Kado, please don’t do anything stupid.” Adda looked on the verge of desperation.
Kado flashed them a practiced smile. “I would never.”
“Kado,” Adda warned, “I’m serious. You’re the son of the most influential kenti family in Senkrei. You are a target. Don’t draw attention to yourself.”
“Do you really think me so incompetent as to not be capable of understanding the gravity of the situation?”
“Well, now I’m hurt,” Kado cocked his head at them with a grin.
“If you don’t take this seriously you’ll get yourself and others hurt,” Adda yelled out as Kado was already walking away. “This isn’t one of the games you’re so fond of playing. This is real life and your family for once can’t protect you!”

@Reblod flag

RoW - lol I just realised this is the second post in a row of adda getting pissed at kado's inability to do what he's told

“Did you know that there’s a complex tunnel system beneath the city?” Kado asked suddenly.
Adda seemed unbothered. “Yes. A lot of people do.” They glanced up at him and gave him a flat look. “This doesn’t have anything to do with the things I told you does it? Kado, there’s nothing down there, just sewage and crumbling stone. You shouldn’t be wasting your time worrying about these things.”
“You really expect, after you told me all that, that I would just forget about it? Not be at least a tiny bit curious?”
“I told you not to get involved.”
Kado leaned closer. “What’s in the tunnels, Adda?”
“I just told you what’s down there.”
“How do you know that? Have you been down there? Why?”
“Is it so hard to believe that a street urchin like me hasn’t explored the city’s underbelly?” Adda drawled. They weren’t even looking at him anymore. “You need to stop playing the detective and start worrying about things that actually matter.”
“Why are you being so defensive?”
Adda stood suddenly and slammed their palms onto the table. Kado jerked backwards in his chair. Adda leaned across and looked directly into Kado’s eyes, their expression so dark it made their brown eyes appear black. “Kado Dortorres, whatever you do you fucking fool, do not go into those tunnels.”

@Reblod flag

RoW - More lore-centric dialogue between Kado and Moukib on knowledge or whatever

“Perhaps you are going too fast. Missing steps. Overlooking the plain and simple truth.”
“And what would that be?”
Moukib shrugged. “You have advanced blueprints of things that do not yet exist.”
“How did those people from the Old World do it, then?”
“I don’t know if I should tell you that.”
Kado arched an eyebrow. “What’s the harm in it?”
“I suppose it doesn’t really matter.” Moukib perched on the desk, legs swinging idly as his eyes flitted over the pages. “They didn’t rely on magic at first. They used the physical resources around them, bent them to their will; moulded them into something new. Only then did they begin to truly turn to magic. They used it to build on and improve what had already been made. Their creations became more efficient; grander and more beautiful. These equations are the finials of a great palace buried beneath the ice of the ages. You see only this embellishment of a completed work — made simply to look pretty — and have no clue of the great construction that lies beneath. You cannot see the hard stone foundations and walls. You cannot see how it works nor what it’s for. Your only solution is to dig through the ancient ice and only then will you understand.”
Kado sat back in his chair, sharp teeth worrying his bottom lip. “Of course…but I have nothing to break through this ice.”
Moukib looked thoughtful for a moment. “Those foundations are more ancient than ancient. I fear much of the knowledge has been lost to time. At least in the mortal realm. I know these blueprints through and through but I won’t tell you.” Kado opened his mouth to argue but Moukib went on, “These artefacts and ruins are those of a lost world. A failed world. You see them and your mortal mind hungers for the answers but like those before you, you must build a new foundation. Perhaps these old equations will aid you one day — mortalkind that is — but you mustn’t let them hold you back. There is a reason time flows onward. There is a reason even Iseo will not turn it back.”
There was silence. Kado’s mind turned with the information. He could feel Moukib’s eyes on him, ever patient.
“You’re saying that trying to decipher these scripts is pointless? Hopeless? How is 'mortalkind' meant to just know what to make?”
“Your mind and every single other mortal mind was created in the image of the essence of creation, Kado Dortorres. You were made to create and discover. You must stop looking so deeply into the past if you are to advance the future.”
“I’m pretty sure looking at the past helps prevent making the same mistakes in the future.”
“Then you have seen the great mistake that was the Old World and I hope the knowledge you take from it is that what mortals did then earned them extinction.”
Kado returned his pen to its stand and stretched his arms. “You know, sometimes I forget you’re millions of years old and then you say something annoying and wise.” He sighed. “Is it so bad to want to uncover these old secrets? Even if they’re useless?”
Moukib smiled at that. “No, Kado. You should nurture your curiosity. I only warn you not to let it consume you as the present is now and the future is soon.” The smile faded and a small furrow appeared in his brow. “I fear times to come that will need such innovation.”
Kado’s head cocked to the side of its own will but he remained silent. Moukib raised his eyes to the ceiling, a distant look in them as if he were seeing beyond the stone. He stood in one graceful movement, still with a distracted look on his face.
“I should go before I draw too many eyes.”
Kado only nodded and between blinks, Moukib was gone.

@Reblod flag

Lore - The Enlightenment (I've been working on Meidas' history and thought that I might as well share some things here. I've already posted this story here but this is a different version. More straight-forward.)

The Enlightenment/Age of Emptiness

To many, the Emptiness and the Enlightenment are times of myth; stories found in ancient stonework and regaled quietly over a fire. It supposedly took place many thousands of years ago at the dawn of time as it is known. Meidas, long, long ago, was a mass of untamed ice. Eternal darkness ruled the skies; starless and black. The landscape rose in savage ice spires and dropped into bottomless chasms. Cutting winds raced across the hardened fields of snow and ice ceaselessly, whipping the continent into an inhospitable wasteland. There were no plants, no sun, no warmth. Fire was an unknown thing. The beasts and mortals warred against each other for food. Beasts ate mortals, mortals ate beasts. Beasts ate beasts, mortals ate mortals. There was nothing but the great, endless despair and bitterness of an empty, unforgiving world. Mortals of this time were as much as beasts. Thoughtless, hungering. They hid from the great elements of Winter in fear. They had no power, no strength, and no insight.
This was the Emptiness.
And then, something new and strange brightened that bone-white world. From the mists, came two eyes the colour of blood. The eyes spoke to the mortals. They spoke of many things. Strange things. Wonderful things. The eyes spoke of the hard stone that lay deep beneath the snow and ice. “The stone and rock under your feet, ice children,” the eyes said. “It is strong and unyielding. It can protect you.”
The eyes spoke of the beasts that lurked deep in the shadows. “The beasts are of flesh and blood but not of reason and unlike you, ice children. They shall heed your call.”
The eyes spoke of green and growing things. “The growing things slumber in the cold, ice children. Find them and bring them to life and they will serve you.”
The eyes spoke of knowledge and power. “The ages are long and you, ice children, live only a breath of it. Feel the singing in your veins, the vibrations in your mind. Let not the cold freeze your burning blood.”
The eyes spoke of warmth and the beautiful magnificence of magic. “The fire in your hearts; let it free, ice children. Let it loose and ride the winds, light the darkness, warm the ice. This I implore you.”
It is said that mortals grew full on the words of the eyes and without the burning hunger to burden them, their minds awoke. Mortals became as they were meant to be. They built, they grew, they learned, they created. Mortals; defiant of the elements, powerful as the elements. They tamed Meidas and civilisation grew. It was after the work was done when the crimson eyes finally blinked away to places unknown.
This was the Enlightenment.