Personal Quest This Little Light of Mine
Lanterns for Ludo
Jigano Silversmith
the Sage
Provost of the Loreseekers ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 9 - Strg: 22 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 30
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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#1
Worship and hard graft, the god had recommended, and there was no arguing with the sense of it. That was how his world had operated as well, but he was an oracle, not a cleric, and it felt… strange… to be taking a firmer hand in matters of faith. Though he assumed his reputation had been lost among those he held dear, and his hands continued to tremble with the aftermath of his fever, his skin clammy and cool to the touch, he was slowly regaining some of his old strength of spirit. He was still moody, his temper rising more often and with less cause than it used to, but he attributed that to his own guilt and anger at himself. Perhaps he couldn’t regain what he had lost, but time was beginning to dull some of the sharpest edges of his regret, and the world moved onwards, giving him larger things to worry about than the blow to his ego.

Edrei… and the remembrance of Isla, her face recently recalled to an illusion of life by Ludo’s arts.

He had arrived at the tail end of the Festival of Lights the previous year, but he had heard about it afterwards, and had read up on the traditions around it in the meantime. He had learned more from Ludo itself; the quest for lost souls after Long Night and the Fae graves in its woods.

So he had quietly dropped a few words in a few ears both in the Settlement and the Sea of Branches that there would be a lantern-making day, if any wished to join, when the weather was mild and the sun was bright. Though many might chose to craft the lanterns in solitude, remembering their lost ones in private, others might seek solace in sharing memories together as they worked – or so his thinking went. The place would be due north of the Spire, a place both Fae and humans would be in sight of their homes, on the outside edge of the barrier scar and just inside the Wildwood where old trees had died and left behind great stumps. Stumps that he took time to sand and smooth and cover in cloth to serve as tables. Springy boughs covered in tougher canvas served as low seats around them for now - and firewood for later.

At one stump, a collection of wooden lathes in different lengths and thicknesses had been set, along with freshly-cut and flexible willow branches and slender metal hoops in various sizes. Another stump held fabric, from gauze to thicker cotton and linen, and even a few scraps of silk, and sheets of paper both plain and colored, bought from Sam’s shop. They were held in place by a few smooth river stones, so the light Leafchange breeze didn’t carry them away. A third stump held folders of dried flowers, feathers, bright and perfect pressed leaves, as well as a small collection of inks and paints and brushes, and a number of simple metal charms in the shapes of stars and moons and suns, simple birds and hearts that could be hung or attached to a lantern.

Jigano finished arranging the items on the third stump, wondering if any would even come when they heard that he was the one hosting the little event. But Isuma chirruped quiet encouragement from where she set on the first stump, playing with a stray willow withy, and the bard found a smile for her in spite of the worries in his heart.



Welcome to a lantern-making PQ for the Festival of Lights! PQ will update when three people have joined, or in four days, whichever comes first! More spots can be added if there is interest.

1. Ezra
2. Melita
3. Jiao
Only simple tables without images or background colors when threading, please. It's much appreciated!
Rathskeller Owner
Age: 19 | Height: 6' | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 0 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 8 - Luck: 6
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#2
EZRA
So here's the deal: you're not reverent. Gods are fine or whatever, you guess, but you're still pretty wary of the whole fucking idea, magic being something you were more likely to be burnt at the stake for than revered for back where you came from. God was some distant idea that priests wanted to suck the dick of and your mom wanted to be saved by (not sure how that worked out for her; it's been a looooong time). He never seemed to give a shit about you, so you never gave a particular shit about him.

(Also the whole god is a dude with a beard shit? Yeah, as if. If god could be whatever it wanted it would obviously be hotter than that.)

Anyway. Not reverent, not into the god thing, but you've been feeling... well... sad. Edrei is dead, just like, poof, there one minute gone the next, and you still aren't really sure why or how. She was your first only kinda-sorta friend here, and a good boss, and an excellent sex buddy. Too hot and too young to go so soon, and she deserves to be mourned with a proper bacchanal.

Or, like, a lantern. You guess.

You heard about this through the Rathskeller grapevine, and figured it was worth checking out. It's cold, so you're wearing a big fur stole over your skin-tight black pants and shirt. There's a grey-haired fuck with a bunch of random shit gathered around him looking kinda lost, and you greet him with good manners a bottle of choice wine. "Pardon, sir, but is this the lantern making party? I came to lend by expertise." By which you mean you came to drink and get someone to make you a lantern and maybe get laid, but hey, he doesn't need to know all that.
isn't it lovely, all alone
heart made of glass
my mind made of stone
Melita Najya
☆ Monster Hunters Guild
Age: 18 | Height: 5'6" | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 3 - Strg: 18 - Dext: 18 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12
FANGORN - Mythical - Vampire Gourd
Played by: Heather Offline
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#3

I am my mother's child, I'll love you till my breathing stops
I'll love you till you call the cops on me

There was no leaping or bounding today, no skipping, no merry whistles under her breath. Instead, there was a hint of exhaustion, a tired, fatigued essence she very rarely carried; Fangorn was the one launching from side to side, from grass to grass, striving to manifest exuberance where hers was lacking. The youth couldn’t even remember a time where she approached something so listless, so languid; she felt lifeless, floating, without thoughts or cares, a strange nonchalance that threatened to pitch her overboard. The only reason she’d even rolled out of bed had been to assist in making lanterns for the upcoming Festival of Lights; barely holding down the toast she’d managed to make.

When she arrived, her gilded eyes took in the scene, everything painstakingly laid out by Jigano, and then she winced at that thought too – because she’d mauled him with her staff, because she’d been remiss, because everything hurt.

If she felt better, she would’ve launched and stared and been beholden to the wooden lathes, to the fabrics, by the flowers, feathers, stones, and every other beautiful artifact. Instead, she felt like crumbling. The girl couldn’t even recall being this sick before – perhaps because her mother had been a healer, eager and ready to remedy at the first sign of a spring cold or winter fever. She wasn’t sure what this was though.

There was another individual near, a complete stranger, but she waved anyway, a weary smile plastered to her mouth – tilting her head to address Jigano as well. “Sorry about the trials.” I don’t feel myself hovered on her tongue, but then again – maybe that had been her, trapped and cornered once more, revealing her more savage nature, the hint of beasts and monsters she’d always dreamed of becoming. Maybe it had just been one more step towards demons and infidels, towards losing a greater part of her virtues. Melita sighed, then offered her abilities, which seemed less and less at the moment. “I’d like to help.”
M e l i t a
But in our darkest hours, I stumbled on a secret power
I'll find a way to be without you, babe

Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 2 - Strg: 10 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
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#4

Jiao was coming back through the forest after a while dying some more fabrics, in preparation for Deepfrost, where the water would be too frozen for the process. In her arms she held a large bundle of colourful rags and clothes, could barely see over the top of it to avoid the trees.

This was how she accidentally flew right into the middle of three humans trying to make lanterns. Surprised at the sudden voices she dropped her fabrics and paused, looking between them. They didn't seem to be doing anything bad, though after her talks with Delah she wondered if them simply being there at all was a cause for concern.

"Umm. What're you all doing here?" She asked, her eyes drifting to the lantern supplies. "...Making...paper boats?"

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


Jigano Silversmith
the Sage
Provost of the Loreseekers ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 9 - Strg: 22 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 30
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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#5
The first to arrive was a stranger, and for that Jigano was thankful and no little bit relieved. He smiled at Ezra , taking in the other person’s stylish stole and the well-defined legs that emerged from beneath it, every inch accentuated by the pants that were practically painted on. He felt the old eyebrow threatening to arch, and kept it down with deliberate courtesy as he offered the newcomer a slight bow. ”It is indeed, and your expertise is most welcome here.” His lips quirked a little higher at the bottle and he almost grinned at the accessory. ”As is your choice of beverage. I didn’t bring glasses, but if people don’t mind sharing the bottle, I’m sure we’ll manage.”

The next to arrive was Melita , and the bard had never seen the bright daughter of summer looking so weary. He gestured for Ezra to make himself comfortable at the first stump, and then strode over to meet the honeybee girl with an outstretched hand. If she would allow it, he would take her hand in his unsteady fingers and squeeze it gently with a slight shake of his head. ”No apologies necessary. It was a tournament, after all, and I’ve taken as much while training. I’m just glad to see you again.” He trailed off, a note of worry in his tone as he looked her over, seeing in her the same lingering symptoms of the fever that had afflicted him. ”Perhaps some sunlight will fix us both up a bit,” he suggested, escorting her to the first table with a smile. ”And I’m grateful that you came.”

He had just cleared his throat to begin when another arrival caught him by surprise. The fabrics alone would have been enough of a clue, but the voice belonging to the lovely Fae seamstress brightened his smile as he went to help Jiao pick up her dropped burden with trembling hands. ”We’re making lanterns for the Festival of Lights,” he explained, her misunderstanding sparking a chuckle from the bard. ”Though if you wanted to make a floating paper lantern boat to travel down the Stonesong, you could do that too.” He had heard a story from his mother about such a tradition in their homeland, far to the east of Numeria. That, and flying lanterns, something worth considering… ”I was hoping it might be something that Fae and humans might have in common,” he admitted, tone becoming a little hesitant. ”Something we could do together. Or at least, you’d be more than welcome to join us, just as you let us join you at the Midnight Party.”

He would help her find a clean please to set her fabrics down and then returned to the first station to gesture at the wooden and metal ‘bones’ of the lanterns gathered there. ”I’m Jigano,” he offered, mostly for Ezra’s benefit, ”and thank you all for coming. With the Festival of Lights to remember our lost friends and family approaching, it’s customary within the barrierlands to make lanterns to remember them by. Whether it’s a lantern to remember someone who died here, or those you might have lost from your previous worlds, it’s a way to honor their memories… and perhaps find some healing of our own, whether for grief of their passing or celebration of the time we spent with them.”

He gestured to the materials on the first broad stump: wooden lathes and bases, willow-withy branches, and metal hoops and handles of varying sizes. ”First is deciding what shape your lanterns will take. Squares or rectangles or cylinders or spheres… or whatever you would like. There is glue, and some tacks and thin leather ties to hold things together. If you’d like to introduce yourselves, we can talk while we work,” he offered. ”I have three people who I will be lighting lanterns for this year. Isla, 108, and… Edy,” he finished, voice going soft with fresh pain at the final name.



Thank you all for joining! What shape will your lantern be? Choose your material(s) and construct your frame.

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Only simple tables without images or background colors when threading, please. It's much appreciated!
Melita Najya
☆ Monster Hunters Guild
Age: 18 | Height: 5'6" | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 3 - Strg: 18 - Dext: 18 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12
FANGORN - Mythical - Vampire Gourd
Played by: Heather Offline
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#6

I am my mother's child, I'll love you till my breathing stops
I'll love you till you call the cops on me

At the very least, there were no hard feelings between them, the trial naught more than that, and it eased a sigh of relief through her, crackling in her lungs. She took his hand as he led her over to the table, slumping down on a stump with little grace and formality, head yearning to hang down on the hard surface and not come up again for a week. Fangorn leapt and tucked himself beside her, another worried growl formed in his throat. Jigano mentioned the sunlight, and instead of weighing her skull forward, she glanced up, at the beating radiance she’d always yearned to embody, no strength in it now, but her skin was sunkissed in its heat and solace, so maybe, just maybe, that would be enough to restore her. A weak smile formed its way across her lips, and a nod – summoning the rigor for words. “You’re welcome.”

Her eyes ghosted over a few of the others, recognizing Jiao from Amalia’s play orchestrations, a weak wave granted to her too (that she didn’t expect to be returned, the Fae a little colder in their stark copses).

Melita could scarcely remember last year’s Festival; but perhaps she had arrived too late, on the cusp of winter. Despite her reservations and weakness, she listened wholeheartedly to Jigano’s instructions, familiar with his diction and dictation, pondering over how many they’d have to light lanterns for – the dead, the buried, the burnt, gone over the past seasons. Emmett was one that came immediately to mind.

Could she make some for her family – even if they’d been lost for some time? Was there a limitation?

The youth’s gaze snapped and riveted to the materials, pondering over which to take. She was familiar with the willow branches, having worked with similar boughs before to make various munitions for herself and others, hands gliding upon those within an instant. The girl snagged some glue, and thin leather ties, wandering back to her table as Jigano asked for introductions. It was interesting to hear who he was lighting a lantern for: Isla, though not quite dead, but certainly no longer human, 108 (someone she had never met), and Edy (which couldn’t be right, because that was one of the Queens, and monarchs were strong, enduring things, no matter how many, numerous, or fleeting). Her brows furrowed for a moment while her fingers were busy plying with the artifacts. “I’m Melita,” her voice quieter than usual, losing all the exuberance somewhere along the tremors in her limbs and the aches in her joints. She didn’t say anything more; uncertain, unsure, waiting to hear the rest. Maybe she could make more for those who didn’t bear a name, but were lost outside doors, begging to come in from LongNight’s barbaric wake.
M e l i t a
But in our darkest hours, I stumbled on a secret power
I'll find a way to be without you, babe

Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 2 - Strg: 10 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#7

"Lanterns.." Jiao mumbled, looking at the scattered items again, putting them together in her head. It was not the way the Fae made lanterns - usually, that involved a lot more twine and leaves, more natural materials, and a pinch of magic too; immediately she felt the human way had to be inferior, even as she felt the guilt for that thought.

"We do make lanterns around this time of year." She confirmed, floating into a neat sitting position, pushing the fabrics into a smaller pile next to her. Really, she didn't have the time to be sat showing humans how to properly make lanterns, but...she reached out for some paper, already with an idea in mind. As Jigano spoke she set about making her first shapes, purposefully not looking at him. The sentimentality in his voice was hard to hear, especially when she had no one to mourn, for she hardly knew anyone.

Luckily, introducing herself was easier. "I'm Jiao." She offered out into the group, as she began to form the paper into the shape of a six-pointed star, hoping to make a lantern that could hang and look like a glittering light in the sky.

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


Rathskeller Owner
Age: 19 | Height: 6' | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 0 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 8 - Luck: 6
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#8
EZRA
If he's down to drink he must be okay. "I have no issues swapping some spit," you reply easily, smirking as you uncork the bottle between your pearly teeth, swallowing deeply before passing it to old grey hair. "To your health, sir."

There's some pretty little (literally, in one case) things joining them, though, so you settle into your stump, uncharacteristically quiet as they all say hi to the nice old man and he begins to spout a long lecture. Yes, yes, we're here to mourn, blah blah blah, life sucks here. It isn't until his very last word that your head snaps up, spine straightening in sudden interest as a painful pang shoots through your heart.

The girls make their introductions, but you're suddenly very interested in Jigano. Slipping over to sit closer to your fearless leader, you extend the bottle again, your voice soft and eager. "Edy, huh? Me too. Did you know the fire queen well?"
isn't it lovely, all alone
heart made of glass
my mind made of stone
Jigano Silversmith
the Sage
Provost of the Loreseekers ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 9 - Strg: 22 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 30
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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Posts: 1,939
MP:
#9
Melita’s weary carriage, her lessened vitality, plucked painfully at the bard’s chest. Isuma rubbed her soft cheek reassuringly against his own before she hopped down to cuddle next to the honeybee girl, so that she was safely snug between two companions to encourage and cheer her. The willow branches were freshly cut and springy in her hands, easy to shape to her will while the leather and glue helped hold their new curves and angles, however Melita bent them.

The bard’s lips quirked a little in spite of his own shadow of sickness as Jiao joined them, a little aloof, a little judgmental, but joining in with grace nonetheless. His smile widened with relief and pleasure at hearing that lanterns were also a Fae tradition, and he gave her a short bow of gratitude. She ignored the stiffer framing materials, going straight for the paper, and he watched her fingers moving deftly as she folded and turned the sheets until his eyes lit with recognition. ”I have not met many others who fold paper into shapes,” he said quietly, appreciative of her skill. ”It was something my mother taught me… but I think it is less common among the humans here.” He should remember to ask Samuel to make him some more colored paper for it… ”Perhaps we can trade patterns with each other, when the snows make it hard to work on other things.” She would undoubtedly know shapes and animals unique to Caido, and he hoped he might have some creations from his world that she would be interested in.

And then there was the stranger, lovely as springtime and sultry like summer’s heat – and mysterious as a moonless Leafchange night, as Ezra withheld their name. Jigano’s brow finally arched at the dark-haired beauty’s casual manner, but they were courteous in their own way, and he accepted the bottle with a little bow of his head, taking a smaller pull from it before setting it on the stump in easy reach of any who wanted it ”Thank you,” he murmured, grateful for the drink as well as the toast. His health was not what it had once been, a manner of growing concern, but today he felt a little stronger, a little better, and he hoped that it meant he was finally on the upswing of recovery.

Ezra seemed the least interested in what they were doing during his explanation, but as he settled down to choose his own supplies – a selection of different sized wire hoops and a handful of wooden lathes, all the same length – he was surprised to find that he had close company, and another offer of wine. He hesitated for a moment before accepting the bottle with a nod of gratitude, taking another small drink before handing it back. His once-clever hands shook as he began to assemble his first two lanterns, running lines of twine between the metal hoops to connect them. He was forced to work more slowly than he was used to, but he fought the kindling frustration in his breast at his own clumsiness. ”How did you know her? Would you like to make a lantern for her?” he asked quietly. ”She was… one of the first people I met when I came here a year ago. We were friends. She was… important to me.” It made his betrayal of her trust hurt all the more, a knife twisting in his heart at knowing that they would never have the chance to make up now. No chance to write her odes to fire or send her little gifts to try and make her smile again. Never get the chance to apologize to her properly, when pride and temper weren’t clouding his words. He couldn’t forget that last conversation, and all the things he’d wished he’d said instead of what he had.

Time passed slowly in the golden Leafchange light. Jigano finished the collapsing wire-hoop sphere frame, and another made of wooden sticks that formed a cube, the edges glued and held together with leather ties until it dried. When it looked as though the others had finished their frames – or paper shape, in Jiao’s case – he stood and led the way to the second woodland ‘table’ which held the paper and fabric for covering the frames with. ”Some of these are thin enough to let light shine through, while others are thick enough to almost block it, unless you cut shapes from it to let the light escape,” he explained. ”Or perhaps you will find a combination of thicknesses and colors more appropriate for those you are remembering. Please, use whatever strikes your inspiration.”



What does your lantern frame look like? With the frame complete, it’s time to decide what – if anything – you will cover it with! White paper? Colored linen? Thin silk? Will it be the same all around, or will shapes be cut from the material?

No posting order
Only simple tables without images or background colors when threading, please. It's much appreciated!
Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 2 - Strg: 10 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#10

Jiao looked up perplexed as Jigano said other humans here did not fold paper. It was hardly a complex or obscure thing, was it? She had not even thought before she had begun to neatly crease the fabrics. "Um...I suppose we could...I don't really make a lot of paper things though. I just used to do it as a child." Nowadays, her creative side came out almost exclusively in her clothes, the process draining her of the energy to do much else.

When the new materials became available she finished running a string through the edge of her lantern (to make the structure stronger, able to be hung up and so it would be collapsible easily) then floated up to go look, neatly hopping over to the supplies. With a little smile on her face she took some thick things to make blocking shapes, then some coloured thin silks.

She intended to cover her lantern in a light red silk, then use the thicker materal to create black shapes, swirls and dots forming a pattern that ran all the way around the lantern and in the dark, would hopefully look rather striking. When she thought she was done, she held it up and let it spin from her fingers, sure hers would be the best (because it was a contest, obviously).

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


Melita Najya
☆ Monster Hunters Guild
Age: 18 | Height: 5'6" | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 3 - Strg: 18 - Dext: 18 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12
FANGORN - Mythical - Vampire Gourd
Played by: Heather Offline
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Posts: 394
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#11

I am my mother's child, I'll love you till my breathing stops
I'll love you till you call the cops on me

She preferred to be left to her own devices at this point, silenced in the throes of sickness, an almost opposing juxtaposition from her usual exuberant, wild self. But this occasion seemed somber enough to justify her lack of motions and spitfire tendencies, and so she hung her head, only capable of concentrating on her work.

Isuma’s presence was warm, lovely, and kind though, and she felt herself surrounded by comfort – gourd and gryphon, suddenly striving not to break down.

Her lantern base ended up round, like the base of a fire, like the conflagration she and Emmett had concocted in the spring, tossing all the old debris from the Rathskeller, cleaning it until it was spick and span, watching garbage and trash burn into cinders and ash. It’d made her content for the moment, to witness things consumed, swallowed, and devoured; and now it just left her empty, hollowed out, carved away. The youth’s gaze flickered over to the paper and fabric, rising only to grab some heavier paper, darker, like donkey fur when the boy had pulled the cart – everything once funny and amusing gone in an instant. The hue might block out the light, but so could many other things on this earth and world – and she didn’t think Emmett would mind. Her hands shifted along the threshold, cutting out little sections so they looked like flares of fire on the fringes.
M e l i t a
But in our darkest hours, I stumbled on a secret power
I'll find a way to be without you, babe

Rathskeller Owner
Age: 19 | Height: 6' | Race: Accepted | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 0 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 8 - Luck: 6
Played by: charks Offline
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#12
EZRA
You're not trying to be mysterious, but if you wind up doing so accidentally, hey- no harm no foul. As long as it keeps old grey-hair's interest long enough that he'll help you out, you're fine being as mysterious as needed. Besides, flirting with him is a good distraction from all the other shit going on.

Your only real friend here being dead, for instance.

"We fucked," you reply with a shrug, staring down at your hands in an uncharacteristic moment of stillness. "She was my boss." As though those two statements come together to make any amount of fucking sense- but nothing here has made sense yet, so why should it start now?

Alright, stop sulking, you're too pretty for that.

You take another drink from the bottle, smiling brightly at the man and reaching out to take the pieces of a lantern frame into your hands. Okay. You got this. It can't be too hard.

........

It can be too hard. It is definitely too hard.

By the time the silver fox tells you it's time to add on fabric you've managed to construct a makeshift square... ish... thing. Fuck, this is frustrating, and you're o v e r i t. Picking out some blood red cloth (sexy, like her), you turn to the fearless leader of this merry troupe, trying to appear a little helpless and a lot embarrassed and appropriately abashed. "Hey, babe, think you could help a girl out? I'm kinda having a rough time here, and you seem to have the whole thing down."
isn't it lovely, all alone
heart made of glass
my mind made of stone
Jigano Silversmith
the Sage
Provost of the Loreseekers ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 9 - Strg: 22 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 30
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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Posts: 1,939
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#13
”If you would ever be interested in it, I would appreciate the company,” Jigano assured Jiao , hearing the discomfort in her voice and holding himself back from pushing too hard. He admired the shape of her lantern, the paper precisely folded and supported by the clever string that was both frame and hanger. The colors she chose were bold, and the abstract pattern her clever fingers cut and shaped to attach to the crimson silk flowed organically across the planes of the lantern’s star, each piece perfect and well placed. Jigano whistled in appreciation when she set it spinning, clearly impressed. ”You are a mistress of many crafts, lady Jiao,” he complimented with a smile. ”Elegant and stunning. If this is what you can do with paper and a bit of silk, I can’t wait to see more of your clothing designs.”

Melita ‘s silence was worrisome, and the bard was glad that Isuma was near her. The gryphon chirruped across the huntress’s lap at Fangorn, glad to see her pumpkin friend and making sure that he was well. She climbed up onto the table as Melita finished her frame, picking her careful way around the materials on offer and bringing some back to present to the girl hopefully. She reeped satisfaction at the fuzzy brown paper that was chosen, though her ‘help’ might have been more of a hindrance as she settled in beside the young woman’s arm and proceeded to purr and rub her face against the human’s chill skin, even cooler than Jigano’s was. The bard looked over as he was putting some finishing touches on his own lanterns – black fabric around the sphere, white paper around the cube – and smiled sadly at her choice of design. ”Emmett?” he guessed softly, remembering the stubborn young farmer, his courage and insight, and the donkeys that Remi had decorated his burial shroud with.

Ezra was an entirely different kettle of fish from the other two, and Jigano arched a brow at the casual bluntness of his explanation. It was so much like Edy’s brand of honesty and he felt his throat tighten for a moment, and all he could do was nod until he had cleared the emotion enough to speak past it. ”Ah… you work at the Rathskeller, then?” The bard had used to play there regularly, before Zariah’s usurpation had thrown their little world into sullen chaos and slinking rebellion. ”I… don’t know who’s in charge of it now…” he realized belatedly, looking a little lost as he tucked his hands into his sleeves to hide their shaking that was more than just illness. It took several deep breaths to calm himself and focus on the lanterns they were all making.

He frowned, concentrating fiercely to make his hands steady and behave as he applied glue to the frames he had made, though he made a bit of a mess of the paper and had to start again twice. At last he finished his own pair, just as Ezra approached. Jigano looked up with a weary smile, lips quirking into a bemused grin at being called ‘babe’ but not against a little flattery. It felt nice to be complimented, even if it was just so he would help the handsome lady with her lantern. ”Of course,” he chuckled, reaching for a glue pot. The frame was a little lopsided, but that just gave it more character, he thought. Brushing a line of paste down one side of the square he smoothed an edge of the fabric along it, holding it in place while he silently counted time. ”Anchor one end first to hold it firmly. You won’t need as much glue on the other edges now, just to keep it steady as you wrap the fabric around.” ‘Like wrapping a sheet around yourself,’ he almost said, but bit back the assumption. Just because Ezra had enjoyed Edy’s lifestyle didn’t mean they had the same rapport that he had built with the Launceleyn girl over a year of friendship. ”Trim the edge of the cloth so it finishes with a bit of overlap where you started, and put another thin line of glue down along it to attach it along the frame itself.” he demonstrated, the simple nature of Ezra’s lantern making it easier to deal with than his own had been.

///

With their basic shapes established and the outer coverings to contain their light firmly applied, the lanterns needed only final touches. Jigano led the way to the final stump, Isuma chirruping brightly as she accompanied Melita and Fangorn to the last station. Feathers and beads, dried flowers and leaves, charms in wood and metal, paint and thread, brushes and needles and slender knives were prepared and laid out. ”We can add a little more personalization here,” he explained, reaching for a needle and silver thread to begin stitching along his round, black-cloth lantern. ”Whatever comes to mind to represent those your lanterns are for. Hanging charms or painted vistas or flowers of the field. I hope that whoever your lantern is for will sense the care that is being put into each of these, and will be warmed by it.”



Last round! How will you decorate your lanterns for the lost?

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Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 2 - Strg: 10 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#14

Jiao smiled wide at Jigano's compliments, always glad to hear praise for her work. Truthfully, she was actually quite proud of this lantern too; it had come out well. Idly, she thought it might be a good idea to sell them in her shop, around this time of year. Even though plenty of people made their own lanterns, those less creatively gifted would probably like being able to add their loved ones names to a pre-made one.

Though when he went to the last stump, spoke of how they were personalising these lanterns for people...she looked on hers with a new lens. It was a bit sad, really, that she had no one to dedicate it to.

Taking a paintbrush she began to add in more intricate abstract designs, hoping that if anyone asked her who the lantern was for she could just say it was a secret; that was better than the truth that she simply had never been close enough to anyone to mourn.

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile




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