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Follow the Silver Moon

Discussion in 'UO Catskills Role Play' started by Izznet H'unar, Jun 12, 2017.

  1. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    The call of the Dark Maiden had been weighing heavy on Izznet’s heart for some time. Between the nightmares and the restless push to answer a call she did not understand her mind and body were exhausted. Speaking with Aedon she was compelled to pursue the answers her tired spirit required.

    Readying the ship for a voyage was not a new exercise for Izznet. The thing that made this different was the voyage would be hers alone. There would be no gargoyle to watch over her, no winged shadow to ensure the sails remained full of wind, no companion save the navigator. She was a skilled sailor but the thought of traveling alone gave some degree of unrest.

    As she set sail the final view was that of Aedon. She stood at the rails until she could no longer see the land. The silent tears that fell were kissed with the salt air as the "Painted Lady" rode the waves to destinations unknown.

    “Unto you I commit this trip. May it be productive that my return will be swift. Give to him, also his heart’s comfort,” Izznet sang to the breezes.

    A while on the waters the navigator finally broke the silence.

    “Ma’am, pardon, but have ye a course to follow? I daresay I know nothin’ o’ where we head’n.”

    “No, I have no course. Let the winds carry as they will. And should that fail, follow the light of the silver moon.”

    “Aye that, ma’am.”
     
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  2. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    Day… something or other.

    Avalon spoke of taking a journal and making entry while I travel. Its seems a futile exercise, yet here I sit quill to page. Perhaps it will be useful to remember events that transpire.


    I was compelled to read books in the libraries at Connemara as well as my own. Several volumes drew my gaze and troubled my soul deeply. I hesitate to pen the concerns of my heart for fear they are not fables but are truth. That being spoken, I hope this to be a trip to further redemption.

    The vivid dreams and visions I have had as late have stirred a restless anxiousness within me. I have followed the path of the Dark Maiden for as long as I recall, which has been pulled into some degree of suspicion. How long, exactly, is that memory? And why do I know so little of the one I am suppose to follow?

    The call of the midnight horn is what I follow. It sounds ridiculous even to my own ear, yet is that not the foundation of any faith, follow the call regardless of the path? Aedon seemed concerned when he learned I had no clear direction, in truth I am concerned as well.

    I drone on in useless chatter, perhaps relevant information would be of more use. We made landfall late in the night. The ship could not get close enough to harbor well, so I will wait the tides. The path feels oddly familiar, yet not at all proper. I suppose time will speak all things.
     
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  3. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    Laying the pen aside Izznet rested til daybreak. Trekking across frozen terrain to a mountain cave took the better part of the day. It was more of a hole in the side of the mountain that caught her attention. Entering felt like stepping through time.

    The hollow echo of moisture dripping accented the tomb like silence. No beasts of any kind skittered across the rough floor, no breezes filtered through, and no light. Utter stillness greeted her. Once her eyes adjusted to the dark she took cautious steps to explore the surroundings.

    Pressing her hand against the stone wall she felt a rushing tingle. The tingle grew into a low growling rumble. When the ground shook she realized she had unleashed a power that could overtake her in an instant. Falling to the ground she readied herself to death.

    “This is not the space you seek, Wanderer.”

    Startled she looked up to see a gargoyle. Used to association with Avalon she was only mildly taken aback.

    “How do you know what I seek?”

    “Know you true this answer already. Return to your voyage upon the break of day. You are here, learn the lessons of which you come to see.”

    The words were clear enough, but their meanings escaped her. As the gargoyle faded back into the rocks Izznet was left utterly alone in a vast emptiness. She closed her eyes to the rising panic to steady the resolve.

    Finding a seat on the ground she took a pose Avalon had shown her to ‘hear the rocks whisper’. Oh the rocks did whisper!

    A quiet mist began to fill the space and images formed within the fog. Grand celebrations with dancing and loud merriment brought a smile to Izznet’s face. Candle and torches lit the room in a warm glow. Thick furs and tapestries of exquisite colors and designs lined the walls and floors. It was a space befitting a great ruler.

    Lords and ladies came together to revel in the union of a couple. Two houses were to join in peace, yet the bride and groom were not pleased. Their marriage was political.

    With a single breath of a breeze the image shifted.

    Ruined tapestries ripped and shredded in smoldering embers accented the blood soaked furs. Bodies still in festive garb lay strewn about as if for ages long past, their skeletons left where they dropped. The attack had been swift and efficient, no warning or mercy. A hideous stench of death wove through the evil glee of the one who brought the destruction.

    Troubled and in tears Izznet woke from the vision. The same cave she sat held stories far beyond those of normal telling. This was not the place she sought, yet why show her these images?

    “Compassion must lead you.”

    A distant whisper brought her to her feet. It was the sound of the midnight horn floating on the breeze. Closing her eyes and wiping her face she took a deep breath before exiting the cave.

    Once aboard the ship again she made her way to the cabin to sleep. Without a word the navigator knew to pull from harbor. The course would be chosen when she woke.
     
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  4. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    Another Day

    The navigator found a silver light and is following it. I should qualify this statement and correct by saying he Was following it. Now we merely sit in wide open waters bobbing about like flotsam at the whim of the tide.


    Where I am restless to move there is also a degree of peace. The sun was quiet most of the day with clouds that hung low and melancholy. A low breeze kept the sails full, yet we did not move. Curiosity adds to the anxious puttering. My trust is that this will be of value and not a complete waste of time.

    I desire to return home.
     
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  5. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    Stuck on a quiet sea sounded ridiculous in theory, yet when they were confronted with the doldrums those aboard The Painted Lady were forced to see a new reality. Izznet was confused how the sea could have space wide and quiet in the midst of ebb and flow. There they sat bobbing in the water, sails full and not going anywhere.

    The day meandered by taunting the ship as it sat basking in the glow of a bored sun. When the moons rose above the horizon the night proved to be the defending champion. Standing side by side as quiet sentries low in the sky, the silver orbs flexed mighty arms drawing waves and tide to do their bidding.

    Finally free The Painted Lady moved with the speed of a hurricane to distant shores. Creeping along the horizon a mountain grew ever higher. The ride was far from gentle as the winds and waves whipped the ship around as if it were a toy.

    Careening dangerously close to shore the small crew tied themselves in preparation to be crushed against the rocks. As suddenly as it appeared the winds stopped. They were brought to rest near a small outcropping of jagged edges. Bobbing at the edge of a great cliff there was a collective sigh of relief.

    Clouds parted allowing a silver beam from the moons to kiss the edge of the mountain. Izznet’s feet barely touched land when she was transported to a far desert. Winds whipped around her making travel difficult. Drawing her cloak tight around her she followed the path of the light.

    In the distance, partially buried in the sand desperate to free herself was a crone haggard and dressed in rags. Like an angel on wings of the wind Izznet shielded the old woman under her cloak until the winds subsided.

    As they worked to free themselves from the drifted sand a grand caravan made a boisterous show as it approached. Vibrant colors and horns blasted the arrival of someone obviously important. Drawing close the carriage stopped and a shadow figure extended their hand to Izznet.

    Helping the old woman to stand the shadow scoffed. The invitation was for the Dark Elf only. Izznet was puzzled and saddened by the actions of one of such high standing. How could there not be a level of sympathy for the one less fortunate?

    Refusing to go Izznet turned back to her charge. They would walk to their destination together. At the speed of a heartbeat and silent as a whisper the sand was gone. There no longer was a desert, but a high mountain.

    Bathed in light the figure of the old woman was someone entirely different. Tall and dark with long flowing white hair stood the Dark Maiden. She wore delicate silver bands around her arms. There was a radiance that surrounded as if from within rather than reflection of something else. Bowing low Izznet had found what, or who she was looking for.

    There was a grace and elegance to the goddess that lent to an easy comfort. They sat and spoke for hours. Questions and answers were given and received. There was no judgment or condemnation, only an acceptance of like minded spirits.

    “It is time for you to go, my daughter.”

    “Go? I only just arrived.”

    “Nay, child, see the sky? The sun appears and beckons you to the top world. You need to be an example to those of our race who fear peace. The world of Men need not be our conflict. There is enough war to share with creatures truly evil.”

    “I am afraid.”

    “I know. There is no need to be. Walk boldly in your quiet wisdom. You are loved, Izznet of House H’unar, the defeated daughter of Otherae’. There is no shame in your heritage. You are worthy of the love you have been given. Take it as the gift it is.

    You are more than you have allowed yourself to become. Your heart has been closed for so long, but now you are free to let it beat again. Hear the echo and know it beats in concert with another. Regardless of the pain in loving, it is worthy of your effort.

    I hope the answers you have found here are confirmation of what you knew already. Return to your home and know fully you do what is right. Follow the path of compassion, mercy and honor. There is no shame in offering kindness. “

    As the Dark Maiden stood to return to the realms of the divine she offered Izznet a token to prove the trip was not a figment. A silver armband intricately etched with the words “Compassion, Mercy, Honor” was set at Izznet’s feet. Touching the silver, out of instinct, brought trepidation, but holding the piece in her hand brought a genuine smile of peace to Izznet’s lips.

    Sliding the band high on her arm Izznet’s thoughts turned to home and to Aedon. The uncertainty under which she left seemed a distant whisper to the bright future that lay before her, before them. Closing her eyes to welcome the new day she breathed a song of gratitude.

    Once aboard The Painted Lady she gave the order to return home.

    “I will see you soon, ‘chev,” she whispered to the wind.
     
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  6. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    “Avalon, what did he mean I am home too soon?”

    “Perhaps his concern is the voyage was not so long as to accomplish what you require?”

    “I was told to go home, how was that not completed?”

    “What were you told?”

    “She said to return to 'your home' and follow the path I know to be true.”

    “This is Not Your home.”

    “But of course it is. Why would it not be?”

    “You are Drow, this is Not a Drow home or House for that matter.”

    “My House was destroyed long ago. How am I to return to 'my home' when I haven’t one?”

    “Ah, there is the proper question. You do have a home. It is where I first found you.”

    “It is nothing but an empty cave. There is no remnant of anything or any civilization there. It is merely full of desert creatures.”

    “Aye, tis true. Yet, it is Your Home. Perhaps tis an idea to travel there.”

    “Avalon…”

    The gargoyle simply stood quietly smiling at her charge allowing the information to seep into Izznet’s mind. The cave home was near, as far as the map showed, yet far in the wandering mind of the lost Drow.
     
  7. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    Sleep was elusive for Izznet prodding her to wander the night. A moment in fresh air would help her mind rest, she was certain. The path seemed familiar and almost joyful, yet there was an uneasy undercurrent.

    Removing her sandals she allowed the grass to tickle her feet. Moving ever forward the grass became swamp then turned to sand. Time had paused while she traveled allowing no recollection of space or hour. She looked up to find herself standing at the mouth of her ‘home’.

    Taking a step into the cave brought a screaming pain to her head that worked its way down her body. She found herself on her hands and knees desperate to find relief. Barely able to move she flung herself backwards. She was still in the cave, but the motion had brought the relief she sought.

    A drop of blood from her nose made her realize it was not a dream. She tried to stand but her knees failed to comply. Shaking she tried to call for help, but her voice caught in her throat. Forced to sit with her back against the wall, all she could do was hope her death would be swift.

    The voice that poured into the darkness was that of an old woman. It was ancient yet strong. She held a power that stilled the wind at her mere presence. Izznet tried to peer into the mists but could not see anyone, all she had was the voice and a feeling of unbridled power.

    “Who enters here?” The voice was crystal clear, soft yet thundering through Izznet’s throbbing head.

    “I am one known as Izznet H’unar, of Hou…”

    “Oh! You. You are here to make a choice?”

    “To be true, I am not sure why I am here.”

    “Then you have made a choice already. Why did you come?”

    “I seek answers. Please, help me?”

    A soft whisper of feet on the cave floor spoke of the figure’s movement. A tall ancient Drow stepped into a beam of pale moonlight. The sight took Izznet’s breath away. Dark ebony skin was accented by her silver hair that flowed down to her ankles. Regardless of the ancient time the mystic's body was exquisite, a stunning work of beauty and grace. She wore a gown of pale blue linen that draped her body down behind her feet.

    A long staff of power acted as a weapon, guide and tool for mystic wisdom. Adorning her hair were thin silver chains with bells and gems attached. The bells made tiny tinkering sounds when she moved her head. Silver rings with gemstones adorned several fingers on both hands, and a stone amulet with mystic carving hung around her neck.

    The one thing that took several moments to notice was the pale milky blue eyes of the mystic. Her sight was not in the physical but the spirit realms. The mystic leveled a deep penetrating gaze that felt like a knife through Izznet’s soul. Squirming to escape the look proved fruitless as pain shot through her body.

    “You wish my help, child?”

    “I have been plagued by visions and dreams. All I seek are answers to their meaning.”

    “Nay, tis not all you seek. Your essence requires you a true repentance. I see you for what you have become. I also see you for what you can achieve. See here and know your true self.”

    With a graceful wave the mystic produced a long obsidian mirror. Picking Izznet up to floating forced her to see into the smooth dark surface. The image that reflected back was that of an evil woman barely held together by sinew and fabric. Dark haunting eyes with a glimmer of sickly green held no life or light in them. Devastated by the image, Izznet wept for her soul.

    “What do I need to do?”

    “Child, you know already your path that must be taken. Or you can do nothing and remain as this image shows you. You cannot walk in Light when your soul path is bathed in Darkness. Empty yourself of the dark ways then return to me.”

    The mystic released Izznet handing her two stones. The choice was hers to make, but there would be great sacrifice involved.

    A whisper of air returned Izznet to The Knight’s Rest. Shaken and still bleeding from her nose she tried to clean her face and collect her thoughts. Making sense of all that she experienced was as simple as broad day. She knew what needed done, but the task would drain her completely.

    Sitting by her own fire she gathered her courage to do what was required. This was for no other but her. She needed to find her soul’s freedom and be allowed to grow and walk in the Light.

    Steadying herself she took one of the two stones and whispered the incantation to release her dark magics. With a flood of bright light the energy was ripped from her leaving her empty. Wasted she fell to the floor unable to move. The next one would have to wait until her strength returned. Sobbing she laid on the floor until sleep took her to blessed oblivion.
     
  8. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    Alighting softly on the balcony Avalon was greeted with a sight that was disturbing and sublimely beautiful at the same time. Izznet lay on the floor surrounded by a pool of her silver white hair. Covered in a soft silver mist her body had undergone profound change.

    Izznet had already been a lithe figure of a woman with delicately strong features and long limbs. Her hair flowed in graceful waves down her back. Whatever the transformation that was working its way through her being it was altering her physiology. The color of her ebony skin had gone ashen and drawn like one starving in a desert, eyes were closed but visibly sunken and her lips were dry and cracked. As a new hatched chick from an egg she seemed small and weak. The mist that covered her glistened in the pale light of the candles.

    Avalon moved swift to tend her charge. Preparing a bath of minerals and fragrant herbs the gargoyle scooped Izznet’s form from the middle of the floor. A light groan and a whimper emerged as the dark elf settled into the warm healing water. As the water did its work her body began to regain its natural color and vibrancy.

    “Avalon?” Her voice was a weak hoarse whisper.

    “I am here. Do not speak.”

    The gargoyle had brought a bowl of broth to aid in the regeneration. Studying her patient for further signs of damage Avalon noticed a disturbing sight. There was a soft dark glow from Izznet’s chest where something violent had occurred. Closing her eyes Avalon held a hand over the area to feel what might be revealed. Puzzled at the feelings she opened her eyes concerned.

    “What did you do?”

    “You just told me not to speak,” she said with a light grin.

    “It is important to not leave this void.”

    “I released the dark arts.”

    A simple statement held profound meaning to Avalon. She knew well the black cloud that hung over her. Drawing a stone amulet from an inner pocket, Avalon hung the silver chain around Izznet’s neck. As the stone touched skin the dark shadow was absorbed into the rock.

    “You know you must refill the void with something of your choosing. Yes?”

    Only the nod was needed for Avalon to spur into action. Items were collected and a new theology was offered. Izznet’s path to the light had begun.
     
  9. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    “Avalon, Hairy said I look awful. Do I really look that bad?”

    “You seem tired, lady. The darkness stripped you from deep within. There will be some side effects to the action you took. But fear not, this will pass.”

    “He said to use a stone foundation. And to visit Spirituality.”

    “Yes, those things also have been seen to.”

    Avalon pointed to the faceted stone hanging from the chain around Izznet’s neck. This will be your foundation until the void is filled more properly. As for the shrine, visit at your leisure. You have been there often enough, perhaps now will lend a new perspective.”

    “Avalon? Was I really so evil and dark as what I have been shown?”

    “Lady, this is question I will not answer you. I see you in the now and here, not the afore times. Your duty is sufficient enough to concern yourself. Karmic damage will be repaid in due time.”

    “That is a bit of what I fear.”

    Izznet released a deep sigh and closing her eyes returned to her meditation. Watching a moment Avalon merely smiled. The newness of her charge was frustrating and exhilerating at the same time. So many questions of a past that no longer existed proved difficult to answer.

    Avalon took silent steps to the open window so as not to disturb the atmosphere of peace. Taking to the wind she also had a task to fulfill. The Blue Mystic would be waiting.

    Avalon’s talons made soft scratching on the floor as she stepped from the sand into the cave. The glory of the cave always brought a smile to her face. It would be a grand day when Izznet could finally see with True eyes the sweetness that was missed in this home.

    As the great gargoyle entered the mystic was already deep into ritual. The aroma of sacred herbs filled the space and light rattling of carved runes against the wooden bowl echoed in the chamber. Peering into the bowl the mystic’s brow furrowed as her second sight read the messages.

    “Six stones were thrown, four reveal and speak,” the blind seer spoke into the mists.

    “What do they say, Mother?”

    “First stone speaks to situations requiring delicate touch in word and deed. There is a provision of protection to harms intended. Trust the intuition it is a precious gift and will not lead astray.

    The second stone is fertile in growth and joy, not merely a happy occasion but the depth of pure joy. There is pleasure to travel with that growth the road has been long, but it is worth the effort.”

    Pausing a moment to clear her gaze she drew her hand over the remaining stones. Furrowing brows deeper brought a degree of discomfort to Avalon.

    “This stone speaks to wisdom and eloquence. There is also inspiration, love and friendships. This sounds good, yes? But it also warns of debts, both cosmic and other. I think this is what is meant for our girl to know. She has garnered a great deal of debt upon her soul.

    This one, if she follows honor, the goal will be achieved in victory and power. She will have clarity with the ability to thwart intrigue. Evil will be conquered, yet still be wary of envy, malice and revenge. The revenge is not the same as her debt, although often they look similar.”

    “You speak truth, Mother. Her studies and training progress. The hole within her begins to close daily. Her strength returns as does the glimmer in her spirit eyes. She begins to see the lands in newness. Soon she will return to you.”

    “I look forward the day to see her in wholeness. Until then, Great Avalon, continue your training. She will profit from your wisdom.”
     
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  10. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    “Avalon, what is that aroma? It smells delightful.”

    “Ah, I instructed Mirian to dry herbs of fragrance and fruits while you train. The smoke fills the abode enough to bring distraction. My thinking was to at least let the air be full of clean smell.”

    “Well, that is a lovely thing to do. Thank you.”

    “Twas Aedon who mentioned it. I had not noticed first. But now, perhaps it will be better for you.”

    “How is Aedon fairing? I have not seen him in quite a few days.”

    “You know well, it is not your matter. You work your training, let him worry for his own.”

    “Avalon, now it wasn’t all that…”

    “You trust me, yes? Then let me mind that which needs minded. You focus on you.”

    “Very well then.”

    “Take thy soak and ready thyself to travel. You will seek the shrine this day.”
     
  11. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    “Your spirit seems brighter this day, lady.”

    “Aye, I think it is. I traveled to Spirituality to see what the Pixies thought. They regarded me with a degree of curiosity but no malice. They allowed me to their realm without question. I was also able to rid their tree of some shadow wisps, which they were grateful. Perhaps all this effort is indeed worth it?”

    “Aye, it would seem the work is profitable. But that was not the spirit in which I spoke.”

    The gargoyle seemed to smirk at Izznet’s discomfort. Izznet blushed hot at the statement but made no comment. The soft smile that grew across Izznet’s face spoke of guarded optimism.

    “I will soon return to the mystic’s cave.”

    “Yes, that is a good plan. For my thinking t’would best sooner than later. You are ready to meet her again.”

    The change of subject worked.

    “On the morrow I will travel again to her. I wish to prepare more.”

    “As you desire. I feel you stall for no good purpose.”

    “Avalon, you read my thinking well. Try to read this thought,” Izznet’s teasing glare startled the gargoyle.

    “I did not … Ooh! Do forgive, lady. The morrow will be sufficient.”

    “I thought so also.”
     
  12. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    The glorious luxury of a hot bath filled with fragrant herbs and flowers was one of Izznet’s great pleasures. The aromas that wrapped her in a blanket of gentle healing balm helped to ease body, mind and spirit. Closing her eyes to all the distractions around her helped to allow the sweet refilling of light into her dark past.

    The images shown by the seer had shaken her to the core. Addressing the dark arts and removing them had left a deep cavern in her psyche. It needed filling, that was certain. With Avalon’s assistance the void was becoming more shallow.

    The visit to the Pixies had given a glimmer of hope that the karmic debt that had been incurred was finally being settled. They had not attacked her outright. Their sweet curiosity and joyous tinkering had been music to Izznet’s ears.

    A trip to the mystic would be in order soon. The hope was that requirements were met that would at very least avoid the pain acquired at the previous visit. She longed to sit at the feet of one ancient and wise. The depth of understanding that could be gathered brought a tear to Izznet’s eye at the mere thought.

    An involuntary shiver brought Izznet from her thoughts plunging back into the present. The bath water had grown cold speaking to the need to be about the day. There were things to do and places to be this night. Her visit to the cave would wait til the morrow.

    Standing in front of the mirror she examined the change in her body. A soft glimmer of pale dusty silver radiated from the middle of her chest. The amulet that Avalon had insisted she wear was obviously holding sacred space for her heart to mend. The spiraling connection between stone and her heart had grown shorter.

    Reaching out to touch the reflection brought a sharp pain of distant memory. Cloudy images of events long ago danced in shimmering fog. A flash of the evil face shown to her by the mystic made her jump. Withdrawing her hand she clutched the amulet.

    “Was that why my heart failed to know love?” her desperate whisper to the reflection was left unanswered.
     
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  13. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    It was with apprehension that Izznet spoke the words to activate the stone that would take her to a cave she had once called home. Her last visit had proven more painful, physically and emotionally, than she cared to admit. There was a great deal of work that had been done to earn favor, this would prove if the efforts were of value.

    Pausing at the entrance seemed oddly familiar yet funny at the same time. The cave had become another’s home, and out of an overwhelming sense of propriety there was the need to be invited entrance. Subconsciously rubbing the back of her neck in nervous anticipation brought the memory of the last visit flooding to mind as well.

    Closing her eyes and bracing for pain of the veil yielded nothing. One step, then another when she opened her eyes confusion and awe took her breath. The view she witnessed was not of a barren cave.

    A soft curtain of flowering vines hung across the entrance. The breath of a breeze parted the vines as she entered. Moss covered the floor muffling her footfalls. Hands and eyes followed glistening gem studded walls to the sound of trickling water.

    Circling what could only be called a chamber was a body of water that had the aroma of healing minerals. Lush vegetation flourished in the cave, regardless of the absence of natural light. Thick ferns that stretched as tall as Izznet clung to the walls like living tapestries. A thick grove of white birch trees applauded her entrance.

    Accenting the walls were flowering vines similar to the ones at the entrance. Happy blooms of white, pink and blue welcomed a startling array of butterfly. One silver iridescent dragon fly landed on Izznet’s arm staring at her.

    Continuing to walk the surroundings, she noticed it held a quiet blue- green haze that seemed to be what kept things alive. Mesmerized by every detail Izzy could not help but smile. So engrossed at exploring the magical kingdom she jumped when the Seer appeared from behind a tree.

    “Greetings, child. I see you are clean of your dark path. It is good to let you see.”

    “Thank you, Matriarch. This journey has been intriguing.”

    “Aye, that it will be. You are far from done with it. There has been a calling to your soul. Will you choose to answer it?”

    “A calling? I do not recall any calling.”

    “Child, you are one from whence lived in death. Now you have the path to live in life.”

    Puzzled by the words of the mystic, Izznet stood silent for several moments.

    “Fear not of your past, it is erased. The debt you owe will be repaid in deeds you choose now to the forward. Seek truth, Be compassion, Walk in spirituality. These things have given you freedom to be your best self.”

    “Matriarch, how do I follow such a path? I have no tools like I did before. What voice do I heed?”

    “Child, these are foolish questions to be sure. The tools of Nature will be your guide. The path you choose now walks hand in hand with the elements of earth. Trust your instincts. The more you listen the stronger they will grow.”

    Somewhat concerned of the idea she was hearing, Izznet merely nodded. The information was heavy and simple in the same tone. Much like the cave she stood, the room was complex and beautiful in its simplicity. The ideas of choosing a path held deep consequences and meaning, yet began with one simple step forward.

    Tapping the staff on the ground the seer summoned a white raven to her side. Alighting on the top of the staff it regarded Izznet with a level of intelligence that was unnerving and amusing. Another tap to the ground summoned another flutter of wings. Flitting and dodging around the ceiling of the cave was a deep blue swallow. The forked tail shifted as it changed directions. Diving straight for Izznet it pulled up landing on her head.

    The forked tail hung between Izznet’s eyes as if acting as a mask. Tiny talons clung to her braid keeping the bird as a headpiece. Startled and profoundly impressed to have anything so delicate approach made her smile and stand like a statue.

    “Oooh Aedon is going to love you! I’m fairly certain Avalon will find you impressive as well.”

    “That is One. He will come and go as he chooses. Should he enjoy your company perhaps will bring a family to you. Remain as the gentle soul you are becoming and he will happily accompany you. Should he leave and not return, you have strayed from the path. Heed the words and go in peace, dear child. Return here as often as you wish.”

    Whispering thanks Izznet folded the swallow into a pocket and spoke words to the stone returning her to Aerlinnbar.
     
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  14. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    Gentle crunch of snow under large paws was the only sign of a presence. Glancing up from her book Izznet was startled at the sight of the large black cat sitting at the step. Pale yellow eyes held a gaze of quiet assurance.

    “Hello, beautiful.”

    Putting out her hand, fully expecting to draw back a bloody stump, Izznet was enthralled with the tiger. She moved as if in a dream, not fearing any danger. When he moved to touch her hand the thrill was complete. Thick coarse fur begged to fingers to dig through it.

    Looking down at the massive cat she was taken by how closely their coloring matched. At first glance it was difficult to tell where skin ended and fur began. When his deep rumbling purr shook the bench she was completely taken in by the tiger. She loved him with every fiber in her being.

    “What are you doing here? More to the point what are you doing here with me? I have never had animals trust me as you do.”

    A loud lazy yawn blew hot breath across her face as he flopped on the tiles. Rolling over at her feet he promptly became a throw rug that purred. Lowering herself to the ground she leaned against the great cat listening to his breathing and feeling the life surge through his body.

    Mesmerized by the power that lie sleeping next to her she was compelled to seek the advice of the Priestess. This was new and she needed to understand. What other great beasts would she be able to command? Or was it more about working in concert with the natural beast? Either way, a trip would need to be made soon.
     
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  15. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    BaleFire

    Sitting on the log at the balefire Izznet relaxed to quiet her mind. Many things in her head been tossed into the wind like wheat. That which drifted into the wind was of a former life she hardly remembered. What was left held her in awe and wonder.

    What exactly did it mean to be a dreamer? She dreamt, didn’t everyone? The idea was both common and extraordinary.

    The chaos in her mind proved difficult to contain. Perhaps that was the effort the Fire touched at her feet. Knowing a thing in one’s mind did not always translate to knowing in the heart. There needed to be a control, yet it remained just on the edge of her grasp.

    “Avalon,” she whispered.

    Soft beat of wings to air announced the presence of the gargoyle. Izznet sat unable to move from the location at the Fire. Looking at her charge Avalon smiled with soft compassion at the sight. It would be a difficult task to collect Izzy, she glowed and radiated a passionate energy.

    Stepping to Izznet the metal through Avalon’s body began to sizzle and pop with a static charge. The sensation was not exactly unpleasant, but she was motivated to move quickly in the task of removing her charge. Gathering the figure into her arms Avalon took to the air breaking the hold over them.

    Flying over the glade Izznet was able to break the trance that held her frozen in place. She wanted to understand the message, but the information was convoluted at best. The images made little sense and the ‘memories’ felt familiar yet foreign. Burying her face in the gargoyle’s shoulder she released quiet sobs.

    Once the emotions were back in check Izznet was able to sit and hear Avalon’s council.

    “You must put a rein on the images to pull them into order. The chaos you experience is from much information wanting to spill at once.”

    “How, exactly, am I supposed to do that?”

    “Close your eyes. Allow the images to enter. As they come to light pause and breathe. Move the image to one side of the room. Use your hand to move it.”

    Dubious of the validity in the exercise Izznet closed her eyes and sat in a relaxed state. The first image appeared and raising a hand she moved it aside to allow the next image. Repeating the movements with each image her mind’s eye began to see beauty and order.

    Avalon stood watching as Izznet’s ballet took a fluid grace. The Drow had no idea she was physically dancing. The song of the story and the dreams had finally been released to show her things she needed to know.

    When the song ended and images became quiet Izznet was able to see them one at a time. Each held an emotion along with the story. Some held dark shadows, but all were beautiful in their own right.

    Opening her eyes, standing in the middle of the room Izznet crumpled to the floor. Quiet moaning purr emanated from deep within her soul. The peace she longed for was finally within her reach.

    “Now, you can see each piece of your puzzle in order. Some things you will want a deeper perspective. I would suggest you see the Blue Mystic. There is much you must sift to allow your mind peace.”

    Avalon knelt next to Izznet stroking her hair as a parent to a child. They remained in the circle of power until the energies settled to an agreeable level. When she could stand, Izzent made her way to The Knight’s Rest for some coffee. She longed to speak to Aedon, yet in the same manner, how would she be able to share? Would he understand?

    In time, all would be revealed.
     
  16. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    “You are vexed, Lady. Why so this state?”

    “Avalon, I need to know something and I want you to tell me true.”

    “I will do what…”

    “No! Just tell me. Please?”

    The silent nod from the Watcher made Izznet question how badly she truly wanted to know the answers to her query. Sitting down she took a deep breath to steady her resolve.

    “What manner of creature am I? Am I honestly such a beast that I could be a hired assassin?”

    “These things you do not remember?”

    “If I did, I would not have asked! There are images that are faded and cloudy. They seem more as distant whispers of something not entirely real. What have I done, Avalon?”

    A long pause full of pain lingered in the air between them. Folding her wings along her back gave the gargoyle a majestic, regal appearance. Avalon stared into the distant night as if grasping for the proper words to speak. When finally she responded her voice was soft as a dew kissed meadow, yet hollow and void of feeling.

    “I will speak to you what you wish to know, but Not in the entirety. There are some things I cannot speak, you will only need to be shown. To that end, we have a long night.”

    Hours marched by as the Watcher spoke stories of ages long forgotten. As the past was revealed Izznet sat dumbfounded and ashamed. Few questions were asked, it was clearly devastating to sit and hear. When Avalon was finished speaking the silence that lingered was palpable.

    “Avalon, how can he keep me so close to him?” Izznet’s lament floated on the breeze.

    “Lady, you know my love for you is to my essence, my very core. Yes?”

    Izznet’s simple nod was the only response she could muster.

    “You will soon see how much more his love for you is even to my own.”

    “I can never be like those he loves. Why would he bother with … that monster you described?”

    “Has he ever requested you be like any other? Is he not proud to have you by his side? Know you not how deeply he longs for you?”

    “Perhaps I forget at times he is not so open with affection. Yet there is a look he gives me. I cannot tell if it is pity, sorrow, or shame.”

    “That too will be revealed. You understand closer to what is needed to know. Perhaps soon you will need to see the Blue Mystic. I think your dreams need her assistance. Then you can approach Aedon. Your eyes are becoming clear.

    You, dear Izznet, are a special creature. Never forget how deeply you are loved.”

    Avalon wrapped her charge in giant wings as Izznet sobbed quietly. The night was long, but the information was important to be shared. Avalon hoped there would be a measure of peace that could be reached within the Drow’s turbulent mind.
     
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  17. Izznet H'unar

    Izznet H'unar Journeyman

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    Once again Izznet stepped into the cave. The surroundings felt familiar yet foreign to her, as if ages long past had held her in the space with no memory of it. Her heart and mind wrestled with things that should be common place. Avalon was right, the Blue Mystic would be a valuable source of comfort, and hopefully some information.

    “My child, you enter with turbulent mind and heart. Come sit and be still. Allow your thoughts to gather in order, then I will answer what you Need to hear.”

    “Yes, Matriarch.”

    Assuming a relaxed position Izznet tried to reign the wild images that fought in her mind’s eye. Many minutes passed before they were finally wrestled into place. She was tired but prepared to hear.

    Placing a hand on Izznet’s forehead the Mystic closed her eyes and began to enter the thoughts that had been so bothersome. Quiet breathing brought the two beings into sync with one another. Heartbeats slowed to a quiet rhythm as they met in the quiet space between the veil.

    “You have a great deal of questions, child.”

    “Aye, I do. So many images crowd my mind. There is a past that feels as if I should know and remember in perfect clarity. At the same moment, it is like watching the life of another. How do I justify a past I cannot recall?”

    “What do you hope to gain from knowing the past?”

    “Perhaps nothing, or it could be everything. I know not. I do know, however, that to enter a union with another that is intricately entwined with my past, I should have an understanding. Yes?”

    “I will tell you this, Izznet. Your past is indeed important. It does not define your present. What I require of you is to go and be with your mate. Enjoy and savor your Here and Now. Examine the present and understand why you do what you do. Know His heart as well as your own. Return to me when you can answer why you want him. Then I will give you the answers you require.”

    “How, Matriarch?”

    “Child, Go! Be! Focus on the Moment, not the past, not the future, the Now.”

    As the words finished a soft mist lingered in the air and the mystic faded from view. Izznet was left alone in a barren cave.

    “Be in the moment. Naturally. “

    Rolling her eyes she settled the annoyance that threatened to undo the quiet calm. Taking a deep breath to re-center her emotions she summoned the words that would return her to Connemara.

    Finding Aedon sitting in his chair sipping coffee brought a smile to her lips. Gently stroking his hair she leaned in to kiss his cheek.

    “Good morrow, ‘chev.”