Private Tales Propriety

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer

Leah Kadashal

Kaderimi Seviyorum
Character Biography

"You must be quickly growing accustomed to this duty," said Bashrahip Mustafa Junnal.

Leah Kadashal once again stood in his office chamber inside of the Temple of the Everburning Flame. Once again she had been summoned for the task of Clemency, of being a handler for a claimant thereof. A fair number of her fellow Regulators despised this duty, a fair number outright despised the practice of Clemency altogether, but not Leah in either case. All proceeded according to Regel's divine vision, and thus too did Clemency, thus too her being here now, to once more handle a claimant.

To Mustafa she said, "I take naught but pleasure in fulfilling the inevitable."

Taking her mention of "the inevitable" to mean the common practice that junior Regulators were very often given the duty of handler over senior Regulators, the bashrahip smiled and said, "I am glad that you are unperturbed, and that you do not regard this duty as dismissible or routine."

Leah smiled back. "The Church is the collective voice of Holy Regel. I dare not question it." And then she asked, "What is the name of the claimant?"

Did Jane want to be here? No. Was she, in fact, here right now, walking through some backwater region of Epressa when she would have much rather gone to visit Guillotine up in the Valen Wilds as was her original plan? Yes. Because Astra was a c—

Jane cut off that line of thought before it could trigger a reset. She knew how to play the game of "little miss Celestialist good girl". Not that she was always adept at it, and sometimes she made the calculated decision to break the rules for fun, but she played the game well enough.

And speaking of playing the game, where was she going now? Why, to a place called Gild. Did she have any idea what Gild was? No. Did she care? No. It was just another Mainlander shithole to her. At least the town of Guillotine was fun—the only place outside of the island the Sisters of the Citadel called home that Jane actually liked. Anyway, Astra apparently cared. See, Astra would nudge Jane along in whatever direction she wanted Jane to go by giving her these little annoying impulses, and these would just build and build until at last Jane got on the right track so said impulses would stop fucking bothering her. That's how she got steered off from the path to Guillotine and over the Spine and onto the path to this Gild place.

What little she was able to pick up from other travelers was that Gild didn't particularly like magic. Lovely, a bunch of prudes, just with magic instead of a woman's curvature. What she had been advised to do was to ask for "Clemency" once she properly met a Gildan, and that was supposed to make everything peachy. Oh, wouldn't it just be a delight if she got turned down? Ha. Your fault Astra. Your fucking faul—

The memory of the Redeemer's hand, smothering her face, that white light, smothering her thoughts then and smothering her thoughts now.

Jane blinked as she walked. Where was she? What was she doing? Oh, right, going to this Gild place. Good news, at least: she was almost there, she reckoned; that big city in the far distance over the sweeping grasslands and fields had to be it. Then she could at last sleep on a soft bed. Astra's dear paladin needed her beauty sleep, of course—all the better to be righteous and...whatever else.

As Jane continued to walk, eventually she came up alongside another traveler, heading in the same direction as her on the road toward Gild.

"Look at this gorgeous weather," Jane said to the traveler. Indeed, the skies above were clear of clouds, bright blue, the sun shining in all its brilliance. She smirked and then added, "Too bad it's wasted being over land. This is a sailor's delight." that's where she'd rather be. Beyond Gild, beyond even Guillotine.

Back out on the open sea.


  • Wonder
Reactions: Nacht
Nacht walked down the road, the heat reminding him of the sun always and forever beating down, forcing him to remain within his aura. Reaching up to his head, he'd pet Shade, who always chose his head as a convenient napping spot. It was pretty convenient too, because Shade was not only small, but also had a non-existent weight, which meant no fighting, but easier carrying. He continued walking, only pausing when he heard a voice from behind that then moved to keep pace. It was a woman, a very conventionally beautiful blonde.

Now there was only one thing to wonder: Why is, I'm overthinking this. There tended to be Highwaypeople on the way to big cities like Gild, but the childlike teen had never been so paranoid before, and certainly didn't want to start now. He had heard of Gild's famed hatred of people with a magical nature, and that those here on business had to receive some sort of status called "Clemency". It was strange to imagine that anyone could hate a group of people so much, but Nacht could deal with it.

"Ha! I guess so. Blue skies are certainly preferable to whatever Hell winter usually brings." He'd say this with his most innocent smile, one his more kind instructors had labeled as "almost cute." Whoever this lady was, she had started off a conversation much like Nacht himself liked to, an idle comment or sometimes question wide open for response. Well, perhaps this could prove a fun diversion from the monotony of walking. Maybe the two could even stick together through whatever process was required to gain Clemency. Tipping the hat he was wearing ever so slightly, Nacht charged ahead, thinking that perhaps the lady might appreciate a question in return.

"What's bringing you to Bigot City? I'm, uh, visiting family." With that, he'd snicker at the sudden nickname, all the more funny for how accurate it was based on the stories. Besides, Nacht wasn't exactly lying. In fact, he was totally telling the truth. His aunt, Mollie, had always hated magic, and moved away from Astenvale almost as soon as Auburn and Cai (his parents) revealed he had been brought back to life. What better place to escape magic than a place that wanted nothing to do with it? Nacht's face momentarily shifted into an expression of worry, heedless of who was watching.

In fact, it had been a few years since either of them had seen the other, and Mollie had just written to say she wanted to talk. Finally, one thought rang out in his strangely silent mind: What if she hates me now? What if she leaves me on my own? It was a scary thought, but what was even more terrifying was the realization that such an idea could be a real scenario.

  • Popcorn
Reactions: Jane
"Because I like being told 'no.'"

Now that was a lie if ever her dirty, lying mouth ever told one. Except, in this very specific case, she actually wanted to be told no. Sorry, so sorry, Astra, can't do that thing you wanted me to do in Gild, the Gildans won't let me, now why don't you go shove a broomstick up your snat—

The memory of the Redeemer's hand, smothering her face, that white light, smothering her thoughts then and smothering her thoughts now.

Another reset, courtesy of the Seal placed upon her heart. Jane blinked. Continued walking, of course, her stride wasn't interrupted, but for a moment she looked a touch lost and confused. She glanced over at the young man beside her, remembering having started conversation with him but (thanks to her reset) not quite remembering what about. But there was something quite available for notice.

"Is that a cat on your head?"

"That's pretty unique." He'd quip, inwardly trying to put together something else to talk about when something weird happened. Taking notice of the lady's strange look, Nacht would become the tiniest bit more wary. Perhaps there was something wrong. Well, there was always the chance she was simply as nervous as he was. However, the pause was only for a second and then the woman began speaking again...about his cat. Why the sudden shift?

That was a quite noticeable thing, Indeed, but pretty far from what they had been discussing before. He realized that now would probably be a good time to get introductions over with, "Oh, yeah! Pardon the rudeness. This is Shade! She's pretty cute, huh?" With that comment, he would pick Shade off of his head and hold her out to observe the woman while also speaking further: "While I'm at it, I'm Nacht. Nice to meet you!” Shade growled a little, and Nacht immediately set on edge.

Nacht paled a bit and placed his feline friend back on his shoulders, wondering what could have set her off. Momentarily looking Jane up and down in a quick sweep, his eyes fell on a cross on the woman’s pauldrons. Huh. That’s probably it. I don’t know what religion that’s from, but shadows don’t mix well with holiness.

“Sorry! That doesn’t…usually happen. Anyway, she won’t bother ya too much, I promise. Might I know your name, Miss?”

OOC: It's so satisfying to write using a quote you put in your sig lol
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Jane
The cat growled at her, that little shit. Jane, in general, didn't like animals. There were some rare exceptions, of course. Like that one saltwater crocodile back in Cerak At'Thul. All of the Eunuch's slaves had generic names assigned to them: ones like Michael and Michelle, Samuel and Samantha, and of course, John and Jane. The Eunuch, her former slavemaster, had another slave also named Jane once upon a time. Then Jane set up Other Jane to have a tiny accident and fall right off a dock, right into said crocodile's open jaws. Heh, Jane even tried to "help" Other Jane, clasping her hand and giving a "heroic" effort to pull her out of the crocodile's grip—but this was only so that Jane could feel the tight grip of terror and agony in Other Jane's hand as the croc began to drag her away and under the water. that was a good animal, that croc. It accidentally did something right by being in the right place at the right time. Oh, and fuck Other Jane, that servile bitch; if the Eunuch actually had a dick she wouldn't be able to detach her pretty little mouth from it.

Well, all that to say hopefully, one day, Shade there pulled her weight and killed someone Nacht didn't like.

Might I know your name, Miss?

"Jane," she said with a little smirk, still thinking about the death of Other Jane. "Just Jane."

She nodded her head in the direction of the walled city in the distance.

"You ever been there before? Gild? I haven't. Never even knew it existed until..." she counted in her head, "...thirteen days ago. Ahhhh, but what's a girl to do? Duty calls. And it won't shut up until I answer."

"Well, simple is pretty too." Despite the turn of phrase sounding a bit like a flirtation, to Nacht it was nothing more than a factual observation. For example, a field of flowers is in essence just a bunch of flowers, but they are still fun to run around and play in anyway. "...And hey, at least people can probably pronounce it. When others try calling my name, it sometimes comes out like a hacking cough." He'd say, exhaling out with a laugh as humor sparkled in his eyes. There was one particular squire that this was especially true for, named Marx or something. When he tried talking to Nacht, the c somehow became a k.

Nacht had known of the existence of Gild for even less than his fellow traveler had, just three days. One to receive the letter, two for the trek to the city. "I was born in Astenvale, in the Valen Wilds. I've never been anywhere near this place, personally." It was a good thing too, because Nacht had a very good idea of what would have occurred had his powers activated anywhere near Gild, even from the cursory research he had done. It was weird, honestly, to read that they took their intense, age-old bias as a token of great honor. It just seemed like far too cruel a sentiment to be proud of.

"My intent is nowhere as grandiose, but I'd love to hear of your task if it's not some kind of big secret. I'm simply going to visit my family for a day before going home to the Monastery." At this point, Nacht was visibly relaxed, guard down. For the first time in three boredom-filled days, he was having fun. They were getting close to the walls now, and from what Nacht could tell, Jane was a bit of a free spirit. He decided to tell her what he knew of Gild, hoping his friend wouldn't accidentally snark her way into a meeting with the wrong end of a spear.

"A word of warning in case you don't know how magic users gain access to the city, not that I know the full details either. Basically, a soldier called a regulator is going to stalk you everywhere you go. You don't seem like the type to appreciate a babysitter, so I thought maybe you could prepare in advance with some notice." With that, he let down Shade, who began dutifully walking beside him because she had no other choice. Sure, it was less fun, but if Gildans were that superstitious about magic, Nacht could only imagine what reaction a guy with a black cat resting on him would elicit.

"This should be...interesting," he'd say to nobody, mentally preparing for whatever tasks lay ahead.

Astenvale. Also never heard of it. It was in the Valen Wilds, so Nacht said, but Jane wouldn't be able to tell anyone how close or how far it was in relation to her favorite haunt of Guillotine. Just so long as he wasn't from Thagretis—she didn't quite get along with the locals during her first, accidental, and only visit. So that place could sink in the ocean for all she cared.

Nacht knew a little more about Gild than what Jane herself had heard thus far from casual asking of other travelers, and he shared it with her. Hey, how 'bout that? Cozy up with a little conversation and get a leg up on life. All the better to—


—ensure her efforts to gain Clemency went well.

"Consider me prepared," Jane said, touching a finger to her brow in a half-assed kind of salute. She didn't know. That was just something a lot of Mainlainder knights and soldiers did. She added then with a certain amount of flippancy, "Maybe this Regulator can tell me where in Gild I can get a good foot massage."

And then maybe, if that didn't work, she could just annoy said Regulator with increasingly ludicrous requests that had nothing to do with anything until he or she got fed up and banished her from the city. But, shhh, don't think this thought too loud, Astra's listening.

"As to my intent..."

Jane smiled thinly. She had to word this very carefully; she had to think this very carefully.

"You ever get caught up doing something you don't want to do, but have to do it anyway?"

Returning Jane’s salute with a smile, he’d barrel on: “Just thought I’d let ya know. However, from what I’ve read, even if your regulator showed you a good place for a massage, the people working inside of it most likely wouldn’t touch you with a ten foot pole.” He’d say honestly, shrugging his shoulders. Better to let Jane understand now than after they got into the city exactly how much resistance they would face socially.

Just then, Jane smiled a bit, and unlike most smiles, it actually put Nacht a bit on edge. Nacht calmed down almost as fast, knowing it was probably just that a smile was the last thing he had expected. After all, those that interacted with him usually didn’t smile at…well, at all. When she continued speaking, he’d relax and grin.

“Yeah, for sure. I have to do chores and jobs all the time. None of ‘em are fun, but they have to be done. I don’t mind it much. Why?”
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Jane
"Hmm. Chores and jobs," Jane mused. Yeah, that was on the mark. The comment of none of 'em are fun was also on the mark. Summed up how she felt in language that was more or less safe to think about, because she couldn't think or say how she really felt.

But such was her life after the Redeemer had the "mercy" to spare her. It was all she could do to take it in stride.

"You could say that's what I got: a chore in Gild." Jane shrugged. "Don't know what it is yet. I usually never do until I'm right there where I'm supposed to be."

Jane tapped her breastplate with the back of her armored hand.

"I'm a paladin in service of Celestialism and Astra, the Queen of Stars. I go here and there, following Astra's guidance. There's all sorts of problems about Arethil: demons, Dark One spawn, undead, you name it."

Problems, she had said. Heh, Jane herself didn't see any of those as a problem. Except for the things that didn't bleed or didn't feel pain. They were no fun.

"These sorts of chores aren't particularly fun, but, like you said, they have to be done."

Ugh. Just saying that, the good little words that a good little Jane needed to say to keep Astra pleased, made her want to gag. But she kept a straight and level face about it, because that's what she was supposed to do. After all, she had been a slave once before; she knew the score.

“Maybe exterminating all the “darkness” is a bit much. After all…” Nacht would extend the aura around the both of them with a slight gesture, feeling more of his Shadow Energy drain away. Still, though, it was a worthy sacrifice for the show he was about to put on. Nacht formed a dark rose, thorns and all, and gingerly held it out for his companion to see. “Darkness in moderation is like this rose, as an example.”

“This flower is pretty beautiful. However, it’s no damsel in distress.”
Nacht felt a sharp pain and whimpered a bit as a shift in the position of his hand left a cut and some blood on the rose. “See, this flower can draw blood with its thorns. When you put that dark ability onto something seen as beautiful, it becomes interesting.” He’d grin, satisfied with his performance. “That’s just my opinion, though. Nothing special.”

He’d throw the rose forward and out of his aura, watching as the magic holding the object together untangled into tiny wisps and floated up before the sun, unable to handle its rays. “All of that to say, I suppose, thank you for not immediately skewering me with whatever weapons you happen to have in your possession in service of Astra.” Looking forward, he’d now observe the looming walls and snicker at how odd the duo of him and Jane were. Truly, A Celestialist paladin conversing with a boy who could manipulate shadows was likely not seen often. “Oh, and good luck with whatever task you’re given, Miss Jane.”

Nacht would cease speaking then as some guards came into view. He’d tense up and continue to walk forward, hoping whatever process was necessary to gain clemency didn’t take too long.
  • Cthuloo
Reactions: Jane
Jane watched the display, listened to him speak, and held her tongue. She could not say the things she wanted to say, couldn't even so much as think them. When they tried to arise in her mind she had to bat them away. It was agonizing, having to focus this much on reining in her true self—the self that for a few glorious years could thrive in its full bloom while sailing with the Sisters of the Citadel—just so she wouldn't get reset again.

Fortunately, Nacht gave her a way out. An opportunity to redirect her consciousness and make light of things.

"You're welcome. I've been known to do a fair bit of skewering in my time. You got off lucky." Then she glanced over with a sly look and an even more sly grin, playful and teasing.

Little did she know, this joke, in that moment truly meant to be innocuous, would come back around to bite her in the ass.

...good luck with whatever task you're given, Miss Jane.

"It'll come to me. In the meantime, tell your family I said 'hi'."

Their conversation had passed the time and made the distance fly by, and before them now were the walls and the Western Gate of Gild. A small group of humans that had been ahead of them were waved through before Jane and Nacht came within the vicinity of the Gate. On duty outside the portcullis was one ogre guard and one dwarven guard. It was the towering ogre, armored and with shield and axe in hand, who turned his attention onto them. By the look of them, of Jane's armor more than anything else, could he tell that they were foreigners.

The ogre guard (not quite the drooling idiot Jane assumed he'd sound like) asked purposefully of them, "You stand now at the gates of Gild. What is the nature of your business?"

Nacht stepped forward first, hoping to capitalize on the Ogre’s good will. Bowing like he had to his trainers at the monastery, he’d return to a stand and begin to speak. “Hail, Ogre. I plan to visit my aunt in Gild, but am a magic user. She explained that I might have to go through a process called Clemency. How would I do that?”

Now was the moment of truth. Would he be let in and led to whoever would help him gain access to guild? Nacht tries to stay calm, but it's hard when the Ogre could really have any reaction and he'd have no choice but to grin and bear it. To cope, he begins to rhythmically tap his shoe on the ground. "Dusk and Dawn, bless my path." He'd mutter to himself, riffing on an knight prayer.

  • Popcorn
Reactions: Jane
Jane jerked a thumb Nacht's way. "Same as him for me. Clemency," she said to ogre guard.

The ogre and the dwarf shared glances, an inevitable degree of tension carried in the gazes of each. The very mention of the word, Clemency, came with the obvious conclusion: that before them stood two mages. They knew not what manner of power either wielded, or how great their capability. They knew not their intentions. They knew only of the danger present, both physical and spiritual, now that these foreign mages sought entry into the city. From the perspective of the two guards, anything could happen.

"I'll handle it," said the dwarf to the ogre, resolving himself to the task. He stepped forward toward Nacht and Jane then. "Right, ya seek Clemency. Under provisional permission, you'll be allowed into Gild, but ya must follow me. We're to go to the Temple of the Everburning Flame. There, the rites will be done. Clergy will tell ya then if you've been granted Clemency or not."

The dwarf's tone became one of utmost seriousness then. "Do not, and I tell ya again, do not use your magic in any way, shape, or form while under provisional permission. And if ya are granted Clemency, magic may only be used in relation to your stated purpose, not wantonly—yer Regulator will be able to tell ya more, if'n ya have questions."

The dwarf looked from Jane to Nacht, Nacht to Jane. "Do you understand these instructions?"

"Yeah," Jane said.

That was a lot of information, but now didn't seem to be the time to break it down. "Yes, I do." Nacht replied, looking the dwarf in the eyes with an earnest and slightly scared expression. Anything to lower their guard and make it easier to get inside. Nacht had not seen his aunt for nearly eleven years, and bigotry was not going to stop him from rectifying that. Jane...could you have been a bit more respectful about that? he inwardly groaned, resisting the urge to facepalm.

More than anything though, the dwarf became grave when he stated that magic was absolutely prohibited. Their bias was real serious, and Nacht subtly toned down his aura until it was protecting him from the sun just a bit, not unbearable, but the rays were somewhat hot and uncomfortable for someone unused to the sun's heat. Sadly, he'd have to deal with it. See, his barrier losing power made it lighter, and it was now invisible to the naked eye. This'll have to be enough, He'd hope.

Last edited:
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Jane
Damn, they didn't just turn them both around right at the gate. Oh, um, yay. That's what she meant. Yay. Nacht didn't look too pleased with her cavalier answer, from what she could tell from a sidelong glance, but all was well that ended well, right?

"Right. Follow me," said the dwarven guard, turning around and starting through the gates. He gave a shout of "Clemency!" to some of the other guards on the other side of the gate, alerting them to the situation, and a few of said guards came from their posts and fell in behind Jane and Nacht as the lot of them walked. They'd a small escort of guards about them now.

Jane glanced over to Nacht.

"Well that was easy."

Still cavalier. If she had an apple in her hand, she would've taken a bite out of it right there, nice and loud and obnoxiously juicy.

Nacht was smart enough to realize that any reaction besides impassivity would just add fuel to the fire, so he didn't even react when Jane gave another choicely worded answer. Somehow, the look on her face said something like: If I knew all the words to a sea shanty, I would totally begin belting it out right behind you. "I guess. We only have the guards to thank for it though, so I'm going to try my best to behave." He'd say noncommitally, shrugging his shoulders.

Just then, Nacht realized he should probably take notes in case this visit happened again. So far, they had greeted a guard, and they led them deeper into the city. As they got closer to Gild proper, more guards joined their once small escort. Good to know. This isn't too bad, so far.
  • Smug
Reactions: Jane
Jane smiled. "I'm a good girl. I'm on my best behavior."

Back to that hypothetical apple: if she had eaten it, now it'd be soaring back up her throat like a crossbow bolt in flight and her vomit, in projectile form, might've reached the back of their dwarven escort's head. Yeah, that's how sick saying those words just now made her feel. But what can you do? What can you do when life hands you some shitty apple slices? For Jane, the answer was simple and easy: grin and bear it, don't take things too hard, and work up a plan to eventually kill everyone involved.

But she better cut that line of thinking out.

As they walked through the streets of Gild, it was to Jane's eyes not so different than other Mainlander cities. Seeing the occasional ogre here and there was new, but they were a rarity, so of course they stood out. A sordid side note came to her mind: those ogres just had to have big di—

Moving on, the only really notable thing about Gild to Jane were the size of the doors on all of the public buildings. Yeah, yeah, other cities and were nice and neat, other cities were orderly, other cities had pockets of greenery (fucking Mainlanders just loved looking at trees), but Gild had those big doors everywhere. Obviously it was for the ogres, but Jane had half a mind to ask their dwarven guide: hey, do those doors make you feel even smaller or what? She didn't. Because she didn't need to. Because those doors made her feel small. And you know what would make her feel better for feeling small? Stepping on an ogre's face, just mashing in her heel, her sole, her toes, all of it as she stood over him. Ah, what a rush that would be, dominating a gigantic person like that.

Fantasizing about a little bit moved things along swiftly, and soon they closed on their destination.

* * * * *


Fun fact. No one seemed to care all that much about them—the Gildans just minded their own business, really. Sure, a group of guards escorting two people along drew a natural amount of mild curiosity, some glances, yet this was all it amounted to. Jane was preeee~tty sure she got more looks that one time the Eunuch made her go fetch a ledger of his while naked ("I don't care if you're fucking naked, do I look like I have time to spare!?") and she went prancing through the whole of Cerak as such. Not the most uncommon sight in Cerak, stark naked slaves here and there, but Jane did pride herself a little on the amount of gazes averted and conversations interrupted she caused then.


They proceeded through the large and lush courtyard of the Temple. The Temple itself was massive, easily the largest building either Jane or Nacht had occasion to see thus far.

Standing at the wide steps leading up to the Temple's main entrance was a high priest, a "bashrahip" so the Gildans called them. He had been alerted by a guard who had jogged ahead to summon his attention and prepare him for the visit of the two potential recipients of Clemency.

Bashrahip Mustafa Junnal wore robes of white and gray, this latter color a stand-in symbolizing silver, the metal whose abundance in Gild had come to represent the very people themselves. He looked to be in his early fifties, his hair graying and standing in contrast to his skin of light brown. He'd a kindly air about him, his gaze gentle yet steady like that of a patient father.

"Welcome," he said to Jane and Nacht both, "to the Kingdom of Gild. My name is Bashrahip Mustafa Junnal, and it is my understanding that both of you seek Clemency."

He made an inviting gesture with his hands. Smiled.

"Speak your names aloud, that I may hear them."

"Jane. No surname," she said. Then asked, "Have you got any water in there? I'm parched."

"Plenty. I shall arrange for some to be brought while you wait. But, you may rest assured: you shall not be kept long." Mustafa looked then to Nacht. "And you, young man?"

Nacht looked around at Gild and felt...less than impressed. It was a city, but it wasn't special or anything. The most notable feature he saw were the odd doors, very big thanks to the larger species that walked past their armed formation. Orcs and Dwarves and Humans, all coexisting together peacefully. More progressive than it's reputation might make one think. Nacht would relax a bit, looking around and pretending that this place was amazing despite living in a much more wondrous location since a few months ago.

He was actually getting a bit homesick, so he tried to focus on something else. Luckily, he would soon find something else to fixate upon, specifically the big church. Now, this location was truly impressive, nothing like the dull normality of the city. Nacht tromped through the courtyard with the rest of their guard, enjoying the greenery and vibrant flowers. The building itself was massive, bigger than any other building they had seen thus far. A few words in common were placed on a big plaque: The Temple of Everburning Flame.

Nacht swallowed without thinking, now a bit on edge. "This is...This is where we apply, huh?" He climbed the stairs and remained wary, eyes never leaving the official looking man who greeted them on the steps. Bashrahip, definitely a high ranking title. THis was someone who's entire aura demanded respect, and definitely got it more often than not. His clothes were of introverted color but intricate design, definitely robes of some kind. Maybe a high priest? Nacht relaxed a little, deciding to trust the priest's relaxed facade.

"Oh, uh, my name is Nacht. I'm here to see family. Thank you for this audience." With that, he'd shoot Jane a look. The look was of relief, and a question. I think we're good. Can we talk? Admittedly, he was beginning to trust the lady paladin, and he thought they could both use the company in this unfamiliar setting.

  • Popcorn
Reactions: Jane
"And thanks be upon you on behalf of Gild, for respecting our laws and our customs," said Mustafa to Nacht, spreading his hands in a gracious gesture. With Nacht having spoken the purpose for his visit, Mustafa turned his attention back to Jane, asking, "As for you, Jane? What is the purpose of your coming to Gild?"

Now Jane was stuck in a sack with a drowning cat. She didn't even know, precisely, why she was here. So, well, what was there left to do but to sell a little white lie? A smooth little white lie.

"I'm a paladin of Astra. There's been whispers of some Dark One spawn. I'm here to see if those are rumors or not."

"Ah, a Celestialist," Mustafa said. "Somewhat uncommon here in Campania, but far more popular in the Allir Reach and beyond. I have had the pleasure of cordial conversation with priests of five of the six gods and goddess within your pantheon. Alas, a priest of Drakon yet eludes me—they are the rarest of all, so I understand."

"Heard Malakath has a bunch of dragons."

Mustafa laughed gently. "Yes, mayhap my fortunes would best be sought there, should I endeavor to complete my collection of theological discussions." Then, back onto the matter at hand, he said, "Very well then. The rites of Clemency shall be performed, and within the hour you each will have your answer. Fear not if Clemency is denied you: you will simply be escorted from the Kingdom, and will from there be allowed to go on your way."

Mustafa then looked over his shoulder and spoke to one of the Temple guards, and they started working out where Jane and Nacht could wait. Jane, meanwhile, had caught sight of Nacht's particular look from earlier. Now she at last had the chance to return one of her own, one of surety and a cool solidity, tied together with a little smirk. Heh, we got this. You're gonna get what you want, and I'm gonna get what I want. Unspoken, these were the words captured by her look.

It was decided that Jane and Nacht were to wait in the Northern "Refectory". And, after the Temple guards led them there, Jane discovered that Refectory was just a fancy word for dining hall. The Northern Refectory was quite large, easily with enough long tables and seats to fit some two hundred occupants or so. But with the particular hour of the day being in-between meals, only Jane, Nacht, and the few Temple guards were inside the hall.

Jane took a seat at one of the tables, glad to finally be off of her feet after all that walking.

Now was the time for a little talking. Those guards shouldn't mind, Jane figured, so long as Jane (erp) stayed on her best behavior (errrp, don't puke). Well, maybe not her best behavior.

To Nacht she said, "I'm beat. Are you beat? Now's a great time for a nap." This knowing full well of that look he'd given to her earlier.

She made a few mock snores, honk-shooooe, honk-shooooe, as she reclined back and entwined her hands behind her head. She peeked at Nacht with one half-open eye.

Nacht inwardly smiled at Jane’s explanation, somewhat proud of his companion. See, instead of spouting some bullshit, she had only told a barefaced Half-lie. He had seen Jane struggle for a second to come up with the explanation, but the end result was…not the worst case scenario. Nacht sat through Mustafa’s response, watching with growing enthusiasm as Jane encountered no resistance. Yes, yes, yes!

While the Bashrahip and his guards began discussing where to keep them, Nacht caught and tried to decipher Jane’s look, cracking the code almost instantly. It was honestly pretty simple, because her confident side eye only really said one thing: We got this. You’re getting what you want and I’m getting… Nacht paused, realizing he had no idea what Jane wanted. However, that’s not a problem at this moment, so he shoved that thought aside. Finally, the high priest informed them they were ready to move.

The place was called the “Northern Refectory”, but it turned out that was simply a very fancy name for what was functionally the mess hall. At this point in time, nobody was really in the building besides the two of them and some vigilant guards. Nacht took a seat next to Jane, resting on the side of the chair and accidentally bumping into the lady in question. “Sorry. Sorry! I’m tired too, I guess.” Nacht would give a bit of a submissive and apologetic look, trying to mollify Jane in case she got upset by that stuff.

Nacht laughed at Jane’s exaggerated snores, reclining back in his own chair. “So. Please, tell me more about yourself. I’ll do the same if that makes things fair. No specific reason for asking, I’m just...bored, I think?” He’d shrug noncommitally, stretching out his legs. They shook a bit as he stretched, prompting an eyebrow raise. This trip took more out of me than I thought, I guess.

Last edited:
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Jane
They did have some time to kill.

"Sure," she said, lazily rolling her head over to look at him as she began. "My mother was a whore in Cerak At'Thul, and she abandoned me on the streets. Lucky me, some slavers found me—free merchandise. So I was raised to work for my new master, the Eunuch. Now, you might be wondering: why is he called 'the Eunuch'? Well, that's because he had his own dick chopped off so he could focus entirely on making money, without pesky things like libido getting in the way. And since he was addicted to work, he pushed his slaves as hard as he could."

Her whole narration had a nonchalant, almost whimsical, tone about it.

"Me? I got on his good side by backstabbing my fellow slaves, selling them out whenever they made a mistake or got lax. It's a dog eat dog world out there. And I needed the Eunuch's trust. Why? So I could backstab him too. And by backstab I mean literally backstab him. I promoted myself to slavemaster. Yay. But I was an awful slavemaster, because I murdered all of my slaves. Some people are just no fun—they die too quickly."

She shrugged. The Gildan guards standing by the Refectory's door exchanged overt glances with one another: what the hell was wrong with this kujar?

"It so happened," Jane continued, "that this got me the attention of my old cult: the Sisters of the Citadel. They took me in, initiated me. We were less pirates and more coastal raiders, dropping by to say 'hello' to Cortos and Vel Anir and all the islands thereabouts. We pillaged and we plundered, and we kidnapped people to take back to our..." Best not to get too in-depth on this. She smiled a bit after cutting herself off, and concluded, "We did a lot of bad things."

Now, by obligation, she had to add this crucial part to make it the Astra-approved rendition of her life. The carefree tone left Jane's voice, and it sounded more like she was reading from the manuscript of a play or quoting some passage in a tome.

"Then the ship I used to captain got boarded by a legendary paladin of Celestialism: 'The Redeemer'. He slew the Sisters who were with me, and then, in his mercy, placed his hand on my head and used his power to convert me. Now I can finally atone for all the wrongdoings of my past. I've got a long way to go, but with Astra's help, I can achieve some penance for the evil I've done."

She smirked a little then, and topped it all off with some mirth.

"Long story short: a day in the life of Jane usually involves me flogging myself for being a bad girl."

Nacht tried his best to keep up with the story, eyes getting wider as the tale became darker and more painful at a constant rate. What bothered him most, though, was the idea of someone being forcefully “converted”. Sure, he could see how it would be better for the world if a bunch of villains like the group Jane was a part of were neutralized, but he held a newfound pity for Jane.

In his experience, across every time he had ever read about a moment in history where society had changed, the people backing it really wanted the world to change. Somehow, he had a feeling Jane had no such desire. If that was the case, it meant she was being forced.

Nacht looked genuinely sad, and a bit pained. I wouldn’t wish your situation on my worst enemy. He’d think, his expression fading back to seriousness. “Hey, Jane? Do you- Do you really want to-“ he’d begin speaking before closing his mouth and eyes and breathing out a long exhale. When he next opened his eyes, he found the will to scrape together the last of his bravado and grin.

“My story isn’t nearly as interesting or dramatic. I was born in a small village-town to normal parents who had the great misfortune to be stuck with me.”
Nacht had always been cognizant of how he was different, and how that made others view the only others who associated with him: his family. He felt much less bad now, but he was often angry at himself as a kid for how his “illness” affected others.
“My abilities were there from birth, before I even knew they were there, so when I first went out at four, the drawback to them also reared its head.” Nacht rolled up the sleeve on his tunic and revealed a long-healed scar, one covering almost his entire wrist and moving back before disappearing under the rest of his shirt.

“I almost died that day, believe it or not, and my skin was left the pale white you see today. The worst part was, nobody could figure out why.” Nacht cringed a bit but continued. “They only knew they had to stop it. I didn’t burn inside the house or even through a window, so my daily uniform became what you might use to go skiing, doubled.” Nacht laughed then, laughed at the insanity of his story, laughed at himself for feeling sad.

“Understandably, people thought I was weird. I didn’t handle it too well either, and didn’t speak much in class. I’m never mean to anyone because of it, though, so maybe that decade or so helped in a way.” He’d say, stretching. He smiled a bit in recollection, and relaxed. The hard part was over.

“Fortunately, my life changed a year or two ago and turned into something like a fairytale. I won’t bore you with the details.” He’d finish, sitting back up. He’d stretch, yawning again. “Hey, I’m glad we met each other. If anything, this day will certainly be more memorable than others I’ve had recently.” A quick grin and Nacht looked away, settling down on the table and just resting there, Shade hopping off of his head and pushing a delicately set plate out of the way to rest near him. “Aw, Shady, don’t get jealous,” he’d coo, giving his feline companion some much anticipated pets.
  • Popcorn
Reactions: Jane
Do you really want to—

"Yes," Jane said, making the almighty effort to smile a smile that would at least appear genuine. Any other answer than the one she gave, any thought to the contrary, would have prompted a reset so hard she might well have forgotten what day it was. If there was one thing, one inviolable thing, that demanded Jane actually be a good girl, actually be on her "best behavior", even if said behavior was little more than for show, it involved the sanctity of her redemption and the sacred nature of Astra's purpose for her.

Nacht shared a bit about himself, his life and his particular struggles. Huh, early riser with his magic? Jane didn't even know she had the capability until she was with the Sisters. And yeah, Nacht was a pale fuck. Jane almost felt jealous of the sun: being able to sunburn him so easily, cause him all that pain, when it should be her causing him all that pain. Jane got a nasty sunburn on her ass once—don't ask questions. Point of the story being, yeah, sunburns suck, she hated it, and she couldn't sit down properly for a few days.

She did have a question about one of his details.

"I don't know what 'skiing' is."

She barely even knew what snow was, let alone any snow-related activities.

“Oh, uh, I haven’t really tried it, but the way I’ve heard about it, it’s a custom within some towns near the mountains where you attach sticks to your feet, hold sticks in your hands that control your direction, and go down a hill or a slope or something. It’s very snowy over there, which is why the whole thing works, so people tend to dress warmly, maybe a jacket and scarf and hat and long pants.” Nacht would explain, happy he could at least provide a satisfactory explanation. He stopped smiling, though, when he contextualized the whole thing. He had heard that remembering the past was fun, but for him, all it was stopped at pain and isolation.

“Now, to illustrate the point that comparison was meant to make, imagine dressing in that type of garb all the time, even on the hottest days of the year.” Nacht relaxed again, remembering his most recent encounter with snow and the fun times he had shared with friends who were becoming day by day more like family.

“However, snow isn’t all that bad. My most recent experience with it was at a moon elf festival-“ As Nacht was speaking, the guards nearby chuckled while looking in the direction of the duo, obviously laughing at the “crazy magic heretic” (as one of them in that moment had audibly mumbled).

Nacht had long ago told himself he was over being judged, and knew the Gildans would never fully accept him, but an expression akin to sadness still developed on his face, visible for only a moment as he continued speaking: “-where I tried Skating. Or at least I think that’s what it’s called, but basically they had there shoes with blades on them. You put them on and go onto this floor made all out of ice. Then, the idea is to gracefully move around almost like dancing. My skills stop at being able to move in a straight line without falling over, though.”

By this point, he was relaxed again, and wondered about Jane’s adventures with the sisters, or at least the less gory details. “You said you were a sailor before the Redeemer turned you to Celestialism, yeah? Surely that means you’ve been places. Any particularly cool locations, ones that stick out in your mind?” At this point, he just needed a distraction. One question filled his mind as he stopped having questions, namely: Hey, who’s my Regulator? When will they tell us if we have Clemency?

  • Gasp
Reactions: Jane