Fathoms
>> Amalia
Seiji Okura
Musician

Age: 25 | Height: 5'7" | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 2 - Strg: 10 - Dext: 25 - Endr: 12 - Luck: 10
Played by: kae Offline
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Posts: 149
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#1
He remembers something.

Like a bird, it flits from one edge of memory to another. Pale-winged, crusted with salt. It has no voice; it arrives silently, as if time has eroded the sound, reduced it to nothing more than a grainy film. It consists of a single scene — a faded slideshow. Foam white on the waves. The horizon a strange, colorless blur far beyond. And between that and here — no — that and him — dark spires bobbing skyward.

He cannot say why it comes to him now, on the weathered steps of the dead bridge. Perhaps because this wreck calls to mind a different one, the carcass of a dark and rotten thing bobbing slowly to shore. Perhaps because Caido is full of rot, and so this memory surfaces first, a lone point of clarity burning in a sea of jumbled sensory recording. Regardless, here is it: Seiji, peering down into the darkness, remembering a time when darkness delivered a gift on his doorstep.

He does not remember anything beyond that moment: his younger self standing barefoot and half-awake on the beach, leaping over the first splintered wreckage toward the massive shape beyond. He knows only something must have been inside. It burns with such dark clarity in his mind. As if it were the most important moment of his life. And yet it comes without context, without order. Did it happen months ago? Years? Did it happen at all?

He ruminates on this, and finds himself still over the abyss. Seiji does not expect it to gift him anything. Not this abyss. Not this moment. But he lingers nonetheless, somehow soothed by the darkness, the imminent promise of eternity hanging in the air. He has wandered away from home, away from the dusty corridors and the lonely sound of Auni's hooves on the floor. Something eats at him inside, something as low and dark as the air below him.

He is too withdrawn to notice anything going on around him.
Amalia Chandrakant
the Shield of Safrin
Hand of the Queen / Baker
Portal Guardian
Age: 22 | Height: 5'6 | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Natural
Level: 12 - Strg: 34 - Dext: 34 - Endr: 35 - Luck: 34
JYOTI - Mythical - Starwhale (Humpback)
Played by: charks Offline
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Posts: 1,949
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#2
She is shrouded in starlight, eclipsed by the creature who swims by her side. Rarely does Amalia tether the whale, but in this place she is made uneasy, coaxing and coercing Jyoti to remain nearby. Something about the endless fathoms which extend far below- the girl shudders to think of it, so generally she does not.

Indeed, she rarely thinks about this place at all, if she can avoid it, as though by taking it from her mind she can will it to no longer exist. The Bone Bridge is not a place she loves (though perhaps few are, in the Hollowed Grounds, especially now that she ha seen the world, tasted freedom and towering trees). This is not a place of joy, but it is one of memory, shifting shadows and half-caught words spoken long ago by silken tongues. Ghosts live here, the girl knows, phantoms of childhoods spent on this path. She does not like to think about it, except for once a year when she does. Then she walks the path above the nothing, a private pilgrimage for her and her fears, a tradition Amalia carries on from a time when she was not alone.

She is not alone today. Each step of bare feet on the Bone Bridge is lit by singing stars. In some ways, Jyoti is a better companion than her mother: less judgmental, more cheerful, curious and eager and wholly unafraid. In other ways, though, she makes the trip harder. The baker is not yet so old that she does not wish to hold a hand, find stalwart solace in the presence of others, have fears absolved by a depreciating laugh. Amalia may not have liked her mother, but she loved her as a daughter will, carried her close as steaming coal and ached in her absence, even now.

Discontent she carries on, until there comes another who rises in the dark, a figure on the narrow path. Drawing short, the girl stares, black stare narrow as she awaits its dissipation, anticipating this, too, to fade back into mist. But the figure does not vary, does not drift away; so Amalia takes a careful shift, her hands upon the starwhale, her bare feet shifting on the stone. "Who's there?" she calls to the ghost, the wind, half expecting the void below to reply with nothing but an echoing laugh.

Amalia & Jyoti
born from dark water, daughters of the rain and snow
Seiji Okura
Musician

Age: 25 | Height: 5'7" | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 2 - Strg: 10 - Dext: 25 - Endr: 12 - Luck: 10
Played by: kae Offline
Change author:
Posts: 149
MP:
#3
A voice rings out, sweet and familiar but pitched with fear. Like an image slightly skewed; Seiji stills, his head turning toward the sound. His body goes tense, potential energy all climbing inward, prepared to move. But he is not afraid. Not the way the voice sounds (brittle).

"Hello," he says. He raises his voice only slightly, and his tone is cool, unbothered, some vestige of profesionalism he doesn't know about rising smoothly to the surface. There is no need to be afraid. True, he feels strangely peaceful here. It was almost lethargy a few moments ago, but the voice has called him to attention, and now he stirs slowly, peering forward at some sort of light, a figure with long hair, the familiar peal of her voice.

"Are you okay?" Seiji asks. He moves a step forward, hesitant, doing everything possible to avoid stoking her fear.
Amalia Chandrakant
the Shield of Safrin
Hand of the Queen / Baker
Portal Guardian
Age: 22 | Height: 5'6 | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Natural
Level: 12 - Strg: 34 - Dext: 34 - Endr: 35 - Luck: 34
JYOTI - Mythical - Starwhale (Humpback)
Played by: charks Offline
Change author:
Posts: 1,949
MP:
#4
The ghost has a voice, measured and calm. It does not give an answer, except to say Hello, but even so Amalia eases, finding small comfort from the willingness to reply. There is familiarity in the measured tone, memories of music once heard long ago. It reminds her of her mother, but everything does, here, and the girl knows better than to look at the living and see the dead.

It - he - comes so slightly closer; Amalia resists the urge to shrink back, suddenly unsure she wants to be seen. Grip tightening around Jyoti, the quiet girl waits in silence, her clear discomfort starkly in contrast with his quiet comfort, his gentle questioning.

Yes should be the answer. Yes, she is okay, and then some. She has friends now, family, something that could be love: she has purpose, companionship, a place within the world. Yes, she is miles beyond okay. She is thriving, striving toward the light, accomplishing everything she could ever want.

So why does she still feel hollow, dull, a space within her unable to fill, cast ever in shadows and shrouded by dust?

"I don't know," she answers honestly, and her narrow shoulders slump. "Are you?"

Amalia & Jyoti
born from dark water, daughters of the rain and snow
Seiji Okura
Musician

Age: 25 | Height: 5'7" | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 2 - Strg: 10 - Dext: 25 - Endr: 12 - Luck: 10
Played by: kae Offline
Change author:
Posts: 149
MP:
#5
She seems to relax, but something is amiss. He cannot know how this place works on her, its effect almost the opposite on her as it sits on him. With her there is a lack of color. Her voice is pale as a bleached bone, fragile, waiting to crack.

That strange creature hangs alongside her.

"Yes," Seiji says, gently. He continues to move toward her, until only a normal speaking distance remains between them. An odd place to have a conversation, here on the pale bridge, above the fathomless depths. He feels suddenly as if they ought to move. As if this is a place one must visit alone, untouched by the ripples made by others. Or maybe he's just worried.

Has something happened to Amalia? He has been too long absent from the world, content to slip into reverie and pretend inertia will solve anything. Seiji's dark eyes study her features, though, so unique, so distinct against the collage of other faces he keeps stored in memory. "Is this your friend?" he asks, and gestures to the whale. He doesn't know what else to say. He wants to take her in his arms, or lead her away from here. He wants... to be a better person than he is, right now.

A person capable of changing things.
Amalia Chandrakant
the Shield of Safrin
Hand of the Queen / Baker
Portal Guardian
Age: 22 | Height: 5'6 | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Natural
Level: 12 - Strg: 34 - Dext: 34 - Endr: 35 - Luck: 34
JYOTI - Mythical - Starwhale (Humpback)
Played by: charks Offline
Change author:
Posts: 1,949
MP:
#6
Amalia smiles at Seiji's reply, a little of the color returning to her eyes. At least he is okay, at least there is someone this place has spared, who maintains strength and conviction in the dark. It is enough to let her release Jyoti, the calf's curiosity pulling at her mind. Still she remains withdrawn, lost, pulling her arms around her chest as though to ward off some chill only she can feel. She does not move away as he approaches, but remains, statuesque, bathed in starlight and the breath of ghosts.

Her hair hangs lose about her face, framing angled features, making her look a little wild, a little like a waif. Raising a slender hand, she pushes one side behind her ear; the other continues to move in the wind. His next question does more to ease her, though, her face noticably softening as she turns to the floating whale, the starlit being who bridges the gaps between her and the world. "She is," the baker answers fondly, her dark gaze following as the whale swims toward the man. "Her name is Jyoti. She fell from the sky."

It is incomplete, the story, but the full one is too long, and she doubts he wants to hear the length of her tale. Where would it begin? With a star that plummeted to earth? With her capture? Her freedom? Her losses? Her birth? Amalia sighs a little, surprisingly tired, this place having sapped her energy as it ever does. Looking out across the nothing, she lets her arms fall to her sides. "How have you been, Seiji?"

Amalia & Jyoti
born from dark water, daughters of the rain and snow


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