Private Tales Moonlit Moths

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer
Character Biography

An unusually cold night manifested near the Autumn Court's Laigin. The full moon of Lessat reflect from the nearly still water of a lake. The local Kilerthi villagers dubbed it the Lake of Dreams. One of the many paths to Laigin could bring travelers near the lake.

On this particular night, moths danced above the moonlit water. A woman, Irkalla, sat upon a rock and gazed out to the lake - alone except for the company of the moths. The tips of her wings dipped into the cool water. She appeared unbreathing and unmoving.

Instead of the roaring fire Irkalla's eyes normally were, they appeared as a mundane dark brown. Only one word could describe the expression she bore that night.


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"You look very unhappy! Are you unhappy?"
Curcurbita's words came unbidden and rather bluntly but not without empathy. He often found himself staring out over the water and thinking... or at least he thought he did. The curse that made him unable to create new memories was troublesome like that.
He had been walking around the lake for a few... for a while and decided to approach this solitary soul he had found there. The night looked cold though he did not really feel it and the water was still.
"You don't have to tell me of course, especially if you already have before."
This was always the risk of meeting what he perceived to be new people. Sometimes they were only new to him, so he split the difference by not getting very close.

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As Curcurbita spoke out, a brown moth fluttered over toward Irkalla's head. It sat upon her cheek and stretched its wings - covering Irkalla's face from Curcurbita's view. A pair of "eyes" painted upon the moth's wings met the fellow fae instead.

"Pumpkin," Irkalla addressed her new guest as her voice pierced the air.

A pause. Irkalla lifted the tips of her wings out of the water.

"Merely... absorbed by the view," she finally gave as an answer to Curcurbita's question.

Silence filled the air - at least from Irkalla. Moths began to gather around the jack'o'lanterned head fae. Some attempted to even land upon his head.

"Are you here to enjoy it too, while you can?" Irkalla asked.

The moth covering her face skittered away as Irkalla turned her had. Fiery eyes looked straight into Curcubita's "eyes".
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Exotic looks were hardly rare among the Fae folk but every once in a while one found themselves in the presence of something or someone unique and in those rare moments one could feel the pull of the earth as time slowed to fleeting eons.
The moth landed without issue on his leaf of hair and he did his best not to disturb it.
"Yes, Moth. I regrettably admit that I am, in fact, a pumpkin."
Well that was that, she SEEMED not to know his name but no doubt she knew his curse though it did not look like it bothered her.
"I suppose I am here for the view."
He had already forgotten why he had come to the lake or perhaps it was the intense look this woman was giving him. His own hollow eyes flickered with the light of his head candle.
Despite this he did not move, not wanting to disturb the moth upon his head.

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One of the moths that landed on Curcurbita began to rub its own "hands" back and forth. Irkalla's eyes focused on the creature and lifted a finger. An ethereal trail in the air formed in the path of her gesture. The moth's wings fluttered as it sat on Curcurbita.

"They won't bother you," Irkalla informed Curcurbita, "And you won't bother them. Even though, your vines would be perfect for their brood."

More moths continued to gather around and on Curcurbita. Irkalla's gaze returned to the lake.

"How fairs your memory, Pumpkin?" Irkalla asked as somberness returned to her face.
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"Oh! That's nice to hear."
His cut mouth warped into a smile as he allowed himself to relax his spindly limbs.
"I do try to be accommodating hee hee!"
The idea that he might one day blossom with moths was an intriguing idea.
The topic of his memory was never a happy one for him though.
"Oh it's awful, as usual. hee hee."
A thin hand of gnarled fingers rubbed his gourd nervously.
"Curses eh? Can't live with them..."
His thin foot kicked at the earth.
"Can't remember why you got them! heh heh!"
His laugh was nervous and high even for his voice.
"I try not to dwell on it."

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As Curcurbita answered Irkalla, her eyes squinted as she continued to look out to the glistening lake. A long blink followed along with a frown.

"I try not to dwell on it."

"Not that you can," said Irkalla.

A white moth floated toward Irkalla. She raised a hand for it to land on and brought the moth to her ear. Her eyes then turn back to Curcurbita.

"Pumpkin," she began with a soft voice, "Do you ever..."

Irkalla caught herself. A tilt of her head as if to rethink what words to speak.

"Are you... fine with this?" Irkalla asked.
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He did not respond to the statement because there was very little to add to such a fact. He couldn't dwell on anything, ever. Perhaps that was a blessing but he honestly could not give an opinion.

"... I don't think so."
Circurbita's reply came after a moment of thought. He sat on the shore, not minding the damp and looked over the still water.
"That's part of the trouble, I have nothing but now and now all I am certain of is this lake, you, moths and my own wet backside! hee hee."
He watched the moths for a moment.
"We have never met before have we?"
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Curcurbita asked his question. Then seconds of silence slipped by as Irkalla stared at the pumpkin-headed fae.

"Would it matter?" Irkalla finally asked in reply.

Irkalla brought the white moth that sat on her hand earlier before her. She gently stroked it with her finger as she looked upon it - as if it was one of her own children.

"But to what ends would you go to remember anything, Pumpkin?" Irkalla inquired.
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"No, I suppose it wouldn't."
His hollow eyes rested on the waters edge before he shook his head vigorously.
"No, I am supposed to forget. It's better this way. I did something. Something so bad I got this!"
His thin fist rapped upon his great noggin.
"If you knew, I mean if the only proof of your own past was that you did something too terrible to remember... would you want to know what it was?"
It was the only question that mattered to him really. The conundrum of his own existence.

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"If you knew, I mean if the only proof of your own past was that you did something too terrible to remember... would you want to know what it was?"

"You don't even question if you're the monster or victim?" Irkalla snapped.

Irkalla's gaze still fixed itself upon the white moth she pet. Its antennae wiggled in glee with each touch.

Meanwhile, more moths continue to gather and land upon Curcurbita. Most gently rested on his leaves - a few on the gourd itself.

"The far east lands of Malakath say this about white moths," Irkalla began, "That they embody the memories of one's ancestors. That their silk allows one to read the past."

Looking up again into Curcurbita's hollow eyes, Irkalla continued with, "What do you think would happen if the worms strung their silk within you?"
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"Of course not."
His gaze wandered to the moths as the gathered about his head.
"I am both. I think that's supposed to be the point."
Passing his hand over the pebbles of the lake shore he created a soft clicking of stones.
"As I am now I cannot hurt anyone, I cannot even remember if anyone hurt me. If I remember, there's no telling what I might do."
He did not want it to sound like a threat but again that was part of his condition. He was a threat, a living warning to the worst fate the Courts could visit upon one.
Her offer, however vague was not lost on him.
"But to answer your question, I don't know. Even if I remember I may well forget again soon."
His eyes fell upon her and widened with the spark of insight.
"If your moth's help me to remember would you know what they discover?"
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"If your moth's help me to remember would you know what they discover?"

"No," Irkalla gave as a simple, terse answer.

Lifting the white moth up to her eye line, Irkalla gestured her head to it.

"This one is ready to lay her eggs," she began, "If her children feast on your flesh, string their silk within the holes left..."

Irkalla took a deep breath. A tired sigh followed.

"Time and your ancestors may show you memories. They may be yours, or others' before. They may reveal virtues or sins of the past. They may be pleasant, or torture," she continued to explain.

"And some learned of how to weave the silk and spin new tales," she revealed.
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A cog in the works.
"So... the memories I get may not be about my crimes, or even mine own."
He supposed it was only fair to get the warning.
For a long moment he looked out onto the water already he forgot how long he had been sitting by the lake, whether or not this Moth Woman was an old friend or a new acquaintance.
"I want to see. Even if I forget again, I want to know something of who I was."
Hollow eyes lit by the candle in his hollow head lifted up to her again.
"If I remember what I did, my crimes. Please don't think ill of me. Your offer is so generous, I'd hate to turn out to be someone undeserving of it."
Standing up he supposed he was as ready as he could be.
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With Curcurbita's answer, Irkalla stretched out the hand that held the white silkmoth.

"Take this one's eggs into your vines," she told him.

The water near the lake's edge began to vibrate. The moths on and around Curcurbita continuously fluttered their wings - even if just resting on the pumpkin.

"The children will hatch," she continued, "They will gorge on you, weave their silk within you."

The white moth flapped her wings and began to gently fly toward Curcurbita.

"You will forget why they're there," Irkalla said, "But so long as you allow them to live as one with you for the next two years..."

The moth got close enough to Curcurbita to where the fae could reach out and accept it. Or, reject it. Violently, if he desired.

"Then you may be able to dream of a past once more."
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He adressed the Moth as it got close.
"Hello there. I hope you don't mind the cramped space."
Curcurbita held out his gnarled hand to accept the white moth and took them in just under the neck, where his vines were loose that she might nestle deep within.
It tickled a bit and then it was done.

"Any idea how long it might take to work?"
Impatience was a new feeling. Anxiousness tended to not be a thing when you could not remember a plan in the next few minutes.

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The moth nestled itself deep within Curcurbita's vines and laid a clutch of eggs.

"They shall hatch within a fortnight and begin to feast and weave," Irkalla told Curcurbita.

The mother moth, with her duty completed, emerged from Curcurbita and began a flight back toward Irkalla.

"And will grow for the next several months," she continued, "When and what you see... time will tell."

And finally, the moth returned to Irkalla's hand.

And begin to die.
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He watched the little thing die and wondered how many other things he'd seen do just that but could not remember.
"A fortnight, I'll forget you by then. Not that I want to it's just... that's how it works."
It did not concern him that they would be eating of his body or that their passing would be temporary. Slowly his eyes scanned the top of the lake again as he took in every detail anew, already forgetting how long he had been talking.
His mind was resetting, an oddly fresh sensation. It was like waking from a waking.
"Should I tell you what I remember, when it happens?"
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Irkalla did not give an immediate or quick reply to Curcurbita. She looked down upon the now dead mother moth. She cupped the moth with both hands with the most gentleness one could muster.

A long blink of her fiery eyes followed.

"There is nothing to tell me, Pumpkin," Irkalla finally replied to Curcurbita.

Irkalla's eyes opened once more. Her gaze finally returned to meet Curcurbita's hollowed eyes.

"But, I'll offer an Oath," Irkalla told him. The air around them shook as she uttered that sentence - magic beginning to coalesce around Irkalla's voice.
The great gourd stared at the small dead thing in the Moth's hands and wondered how long it had been there.
"I'm sorry about her. I hope she didn't suffer. Was she sick?"
His attention was drawn away again by her latest offer and he quirked his head to the slide slightly.
"An Oath of what exactly?"
Though it was late for suspicion and it would not last long no Fey, living or damned, would enter into an oath or pact without hearing the terms.
Inside his head the light of his candle flickered a bit intimating the spark of interest.
He did not move, despite all he could not remember perhaps the one mercy of his condition was that he must still abide by the rules of the Fay and so long as he was told, whether he remembered it or not, he would be compelled by it none the less.
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"Not sick. She and the others have no mouth," Irkalla informed Curcurbita when he questioned why the moth died.

When asked of the oath's details, Irkalla finally stood up. With her feet upon a boulder, her head stood above that of Curcurbita's. She looked down upon the other Fae.

"This is an Oath from This One to you," Irkalla declared as her voice shook the air.

One of her hands lifted up. A sign of benediction followed. Irkalla's eyes shined brightly - growing more luminescent on this moonlit night. The lake's surface began to quake.

"As so long one of those children cling to thou," Irkalla began.

"So shall I serve thee as thine ally. Be thou in danger to my knowledge, I shall be thine sword and shield. This is my duty. I shall not abandon thou 'til the last child flies from thine body, else may the stars close their eyes and begin the Dreamless Sleep."
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