• Solo • The House Filled with Darkness

Warning: Dark themes. All implied, but still best to avoid if it might be a problem for you. Tio recruits his first follower: Morgana.

1st of Ashan 720

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Tio Silver
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The House Filled with Darkness

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Deepwater Cavern, Yaralon
1st Ashan, 720
A home.

It should have been a place of warmth; a bastion of safety and comfort. Yet this one was anything but. It was a house of darkness.

It was not just because the curtains were drawn in midday, although that certainly didn't help much. The darkness of this house lay in other places: in the hundreds of bottles scattered haphazardly across the floor; in the shadow of the father sat snoring in his armchair; in the fresh bruises growing on the skin of the girl huddled in the corner, not making a sound even as her body shook in muted sobs. She was short for a girl in her early teens, all thin little limbs not yet filled out with muscle, with unkempt black hair that fell flat over her face. Yet there was a paleness to her skin found only in those who rarely walked in the light, and the gauntness in her cheeks of one who regularly ate just a little bit less than they needed.

"Wow, this place really needs a good cleaning."

The girl shot up in shock to look at the man who had, quite literally, appeared out of thin air in the middle of her house. His clean, well-pressed red and black waistcoat contrasted almost perfectly with the worn brown tunic she wore, and the sightless white eyes that looked down on her seemed to hold more light in them than the healthy but hard ones that the rest of the people who lived in Deepwater cavern had. With an amused smirk the stranger knelt down to get a better look at her.

"You know kiddo you ought to be careful about offering a prayer without specifying who you're praying to. You never know who could be listening."

The girl looked up at the stranger with a mix of wariness and surprise, until a flash of realisation crossed her face. "Are you Vri?"

"Vri? Nah, I'm not him. I like to think I'm a lot better looking than old pasty-face." The stranger laughed. But something about the laugh didn't quite reach his eyes, as if he was forcing it somehow. His eyes darted over to the figure of the father slumbering away in the armchair. "Why? Were you hoping for him?" His eyes flicked back to the bruise forming on the girl's cheek and narrowed ever so slightly. "Or perhaps expecting him?"

The girl looked down at the ground, her hair falling across her face like a curtain to hide the flush of shame that crossed it. "Then who are you?"

"You can call me Tio."

"Tio? Never heard of you."

The stranger, Tio, chuckled lightly. "I'd be surprised if you had. I suppose you could say I'm a fairly low-key kind of a deity. How about you kid? What's your name?"

"Morgana."

"Morgana…" Tio sampled the name on his tongue. "That's an interesting name. A strong name. So tell me Morgana, what's a kid like you trying to catch the attention of something like an Immortal for?"

Morgana looked back up at him, a spark of fire igniting in her murky brown eyes. She pushed forward out of the corner and wrapped her hands around Tio's pleadingly. "Give me your power! Please!"

Tio's eyebrows shot up in surprise at the sudden change in attitude. "Excuse me?"

"You're an Immortal right?! Then you can lend people your power, your blessing?! Please give it to me! I'll do anything you ask!"

"Whoa there, steady on kiddo." Tio replied quickly. "You don't know who I am or what I stand for. You shouldn't be pledging your service to someone you've only just met."

"But I have to get a blessing!"

"Why?"

That question took some of the wind out of Morgana's sails, and she fidgeted with her hands uncomfortably. "Might makes right around here. I don't have the strength to take control of my own life." She looked back up at Tio, desperation shining clear in her eyes. "But with an Immortal's power I could! I'd be free of him. Please, help me."

Tio looked at her carefully, as if he could read her very soul in the expression on her face. Finally he stood up and slowly shook his head. "No."

Confusion passed across Morgana's face, as if she couldn't quite believe what she'd heard.

"No?"

"No."

"But-... but why?!" Morgana shot forward and grabbed the sleeve of Tio's shirt, tears beginning to form in her eyes. "Please! Why won't you help me? Why won't you give me your mark?"

"Because you need it." Tio replied solemnly.

Anger started to boil up in Morgana's chest, spreading through her veins and coating the edges of her vision in a red mist. "I know that! I know that I need it! That's exactly why I'm asking for it!"

"And exactly why I won't give it to you." Tio retorted patiently, looking regretful for just a moment before hiding his emotions away again behind a mask of indifference. "I'm afraid I'm not that type of Immortal. I won't lend my power to anyone who needs it. Only those who are ready for it."

"NO! NO NO NO!" Morgana screamed, lunging forward to pound a fist down on Tio's chest in blind rage. But if it pained the strange Immortal he didn't show it, only stood there silently and let the girl vent her anger. "You could save me! Why won't you?!"

The strength behind Morgana's anger started to fade, and Tio placed a hand on her shoulder. "Because this life of yours, this existence, is a curse, and I don't break curses. I will be there for you whenever I can, but I won't save you. All I can do is watch and wait until you are ready."

"I don't understand!"

"You will kid. Soon. I promise you that."

And just like that Tio stepped back and vanished into thin air, retreating into Emea and leaving nothing but the memory of himself behind. And once again Morgana was all alone, trapped within her house of darkness.
word count: 1060
Fast Facts
Noticeable quirks your character can see when threading with Tio.

Floats

Tio floats in the air, usually just a foot off the ground.

Explodeibur

Tio wears a scary looking gauntlet on his right hand that is clearly magical. It creates explosions.

Mercury

Tio has a masked alter ego who leads The Court of Miracles.

Enchanting Voice

Tio's voice has hypnotic properties.
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Tio Silver
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Posts: 1273
Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 3:04 pm
Race: Immortal
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Renown: 665
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Re: The House Filled with Darkness

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Deepwater Cavern, Yaralon
16th Ashan, 720

Another trial, another repeat of the same old routine. The father woke up, ate his breakfast, grabbed his mace and shield off the rack, and went out to work. He would be back again sometime late into the night, his face flushed with liquor and rage, and his weapon dyed red. A simple routine.

More complex than Morgana's however. She would wake, scrounge whatever food she could from the stained and splintered cupboards, maybe be allowed to go outside of the house for a while if there were chores to do, and then get to work on fletching. Arrows were in high demand in Deepwater Cavern, even the cheap ones she could make. She would sit in front of the pile of arrowheads and branches set aside in the room she slept in and get to work all throughout the day; never leaving, never stopping, never even knowing which point the sun was riding in the sky behind the cavern ceiling. She had a quota to meet, a quota that increased each day, and as her father had often told her if she didn't meet it she'd regret it. He wasn't lying. He'd proven that.

And so today, like every day, she sat in her room with no windows and silently got to work; whittling away with a small pocket knife over and over again...

Only for a big, goofy grin to pop into existence in front of her.

"Morning kiddo! Want to hear a joke?" Tio's face, complete with an exuberant grin, hung down from where he was floating up by the ceiling. Morgana tried to shoot an icy glare at him, but with her childish face was only successful of a slightly frosty pout that he found more amusing than intimidating.

This was a new change to her otherwise simple routine. For the past fifteen trials, ever since she'd first offered that prayer to anyone who would listen, the self-proclaimed Immortal had made a habit of popping in to visit at random times. Sometimes he told her stories about the world beyond Deepwater Cavern; of the exotic countries he'd seen and the exciting adventures he'd had. Tio, Morgana had quickly come to realise, was the sort of person who could talk for days on end, and most certainly would if given the opportunity. Not that she was complaining though: his descriptions conjured images in her imagination more fantastical and vivid than any words other people had spoken to her.

He never gave her the power she wanted though, no matter how much she'd begged or pleaded. Nor did he do anything particularly godly; besides the floating and the disappearing into thin air he was basically a regular guy. At first she'd been upset with him, seeing his refusal as a form of taunting, and had been determined to stay mad at him. Unfortunately it turned out that staying mad at Tio was a surprisingly hard thing to do. He seemed to know just what to say to catch her attention, and before she knew it she'd been roped along into listening to one of his silly stories again. Eventually Morgana came to a simple realisation.

Tio wasn't real.

It was the most logical explanation really. Nobody had ever heard of an Immortal named Tio, and he never appeared whenever anybody else was around. For all he claimed to have divine powers he never actually used them, and on the rare occasions when he physically interacted with something he always put it back where he found it. Morgana had heard that sometimes crazy people hallucinated seeing strange creatures or monsters, so was it such a stretch to figure that she was hallucinating a floating idiot? Oddly enough the idea that she was crazy didn't bother her as much as it should. At least she had someone to talk to.

“... So… Is that a no on the joke?” Tio raised an eyebrow (or lowered it? If someone raised an eyebrow whilst hanging upside down they were technically lowering it weren’t they?) and Morgana realised she’d gotten lost in thought and made a fool of herself. With an embarrassed scowl and a huff she turned away, which only served to make Tio even more amused. Letting out a gentle chuckle, the imaginary man glided through the air to hover over the pile of arrow parts, stretching out in a parody of someone relaxing on a comfortable chair. “Shame, it was a really good one as well. Had a lion, a giraffe and Ilaren in it...”

Time began to pass as the two fell into their usual routine: her studiously getting on with her work and trying not to show how interested she was, while he began spouting his usual tirade of entertaining nonsense. With company to focus on rather than the monotony of work the time seemed to pass even quicker than usual, until the pile of parts was almost halfway gone, replaced by a steadily growing pile of arrows.

It was without warning that Tio suddenly grew quiet, the rhythm of his voice trailing off halfway through a fantastical tale about him sailing through the world of dreams with a wolf. Morgana looked over to see what had caused the interruption, only to find Tio looking at her with his face lacking its ever-present smile. He looked… concerned?

“Why not leave?” He asked.

The abrupt change of topic caught Morgana off guard for a second, but she quickly clued in on what he was talking about. “The swamp outside is full of dangerous creatures: the kind that lay tricks and traps, or wait until you are at your weakest to strike. I would not survive the journey through it. And even if I did, without the strength or money to protect myself I wouldn’t last a trial in Yaralon.”

“Isn’t there any money around here? Anything you could borrow to hire protection and passage to a safer country?”

Morgana shook her head. “Father lives from job to job. Anything that isn’t spent on necessities goes to drink.”

Tio hummed darkly. “And nobody here will help you? Out of the kindness of their hearts, if for no other reason?”

“Father is a great raider: one of the strongest. Anyone who cares enough is too weak to best him in a duel.”

Tio shot her a wry smile. “So that’s what you want to do with my power, is it? Use my strength to best him in an epic duel for your freedom?”

Was he… going to give her his mark! Morgana shot to her feet and rushed over to him, desperate eagerness shining bright in her eyes. “You’ll grant it to me?!”

“No.”

Okay, now he was just being cruel! Morgana opened her mouth and drew a deep breath, preparing to launch into an angry tirade of insults, but was interrupted when Tio’s hand reached out without warning and ruffled her messy hair. Nobody had ever patted Morgana on the head before, and the strangeness of the situation caused her to pause.

“I… I sympathise with you kiddo.” Tio began, the conflict within him clear in his expression. “Really I do. You’re a great kid, and by sheer bad luck you’ve been dealt a real bad first hand in life that you didn’t deserve. You’re in a situation that you can’t run or hide from, and it seems pretty clear to me that the only way to break free of your destiny is to fight on through it. Now you’re right that my intervention could solve all your problems for you, but that line of thinking has its own kind of dangers.”

His feet settled to the floor as Tio knelt down to her eye level, his ruined eyes staring straight into hers. “There are no white knights who come charging in to save the day. All help comes with a price, even if you can’t quite see it at the time. When you trust in another to solve your problems for you it becomes harder and harder to survive without their help, until one day you find yourself completely dependent on them. That line of thinking is why Immortals rule over this world: because so many humans have come to rely on their protection that they are too afraid of life without it to defy them. My help is no exception. I am a… cursed man, and so is any power I can grant. Those who come rely on me will ultimately be disappointed in the end. That is why I will not take any follower unless I know they will be fine independently of me: so that when the day comes that I let them down it won’t destroy them in the process.”

“So what do I do then?” Morgana asked, looking back at him with confusion. “How do I break free from this?”

Tio shook his head. “I cannot tell you that. There is an answer, but it is one that you must find on your own.” He smiled, not the mischievous smile he normally wore but a genuine one. “But remember this Morgana: just because I won’t save you doesn’t mean I won’t help you. There is a difference there, even if it is but a subtle one. When you are ready I will be there.”

And once again without warning Tio stepped back into Emea, disappearing into thin air and leaving Morgana all alone in the dark of her house. Yet this time, even though she was alone, Morgana didn’t feel like she was. The memory of the hand on her head lingered; a faint echo of warmth and unspoken support.

Maybe… just maybe… Tio wasn’t so imaginary after all…
word count: 1657
Fast Facts
Noticeable quirks your character can see when threading with Tio.

Floats

Tio floats in the air, usually just a foot off the ground.

Explodeibur

Tio wears a scary looking gauntlet on his right hand that is clearly magical. It creates explosions.

Mercury

Tio has a masked alter ego who leads The Court of Miracles.

Enchanting Voice

Tio's voice has hypnotic properties.
User avatar
Tio Silver
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Posts: 1273
Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 3:04 pm
Race: Immortal
Profession: God of Curses
Renown: 665
Character Sheet
Character Wiki
Plot Notes
Personal Journal
Letters
Point Bank Thread
Wealth Tier: Tier 6

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Events

Re: The House Filled with Darkness

Image
Deepwater Cavern, Yaralon
17th Ashan, 720

“You pathetic little brat!”

Morgana was trying her best. Her thin, undernourished muscles pulled back on the bowstring with every fibre of strength they had, and no matter how violently her hands shook she kept hold of the bow and arrow through sheer force of determination. She had done everything right: chosen a distance far enough away to be out of her target’s attack range yet close enough to make missing her shot impossible; laid in wait inside so that her mark wouldn’t have the space to dodge; even waited until she knew he would be drunk out of his mind and thus would have his reflexes dulled. It was the perfect ambush, save for one crucial detail.

She couldn’t shoot.

Every part of her conscious mind was screaming at her to let go of the arrow, to send it flying into the chest of the figure lumbering ominously towards her. Yet she couldn’t. Was it fear holding her back? Some misplaced sense of love perhaps? She didn’t know the answer, only that she could barely hear her own thoughts over the beating of her heart in her chest, and that even as he took more and more lumbering steps towards her her fingers remained frozen still.

“You are a knat. A worm. Worth as much as the rats. You dare challenge me? You?!” Her target growled, the outline of his strong jaw barely visible in the darkness. He had always been a giant, muscle-bound monster of a man, but on this night especially he seemed so much bigger than before. Each footstep was like a great stone pillar striking the ground, and the meaty hands that were clenched into tight fists looked almost like battering rams. Although the shadows of night concealed his face Morgana could make out the the barest hint of an eye, looking down on her with a potent mixture of loathing and disgust. “You are weak! Insignificant! Duels are the custom for the strong, not for weaklings like you. You bring dishonour to it by daring to invoke that law for yourself!” One hand reached to the side to grab a nearby table, and without even a hint of effort the brute snapped the leg off to wield it like a club.

“But I shall teach you respect, the hard way.” Morgana’s target, her father, hissed.

Another step forwards, and Morgana’s panic spiked. She had to shoot, she knew she did! So then why was it that her fingers just couldn’t seem to open! Why could she do nothing but stare with wide eyes and tremble as her father loomed nearer and nearer?

“Wretched!”

Another step. The acrid scent of cheap booze caught her nose.

Run away! Run!

“Miserable!”

Another step. She could see the messy web of creases across his shirt.

Hide! Cower! Beg for mercy!

“Weak!”

One last step. He raised the chair leg, ready to bring it down upon her in a vicious strike!

Fight!

Something whizzed past her face, a brief flash of silent lightning in the dark. Her father froze, eyes wide in shock. Slowly, afraid of what she would see, Morgana turned her head to look back at the hand she had been holding back the arrow with. A hand that was now empty.

She had fired the arrow.

She had missed.

Her father eyed the offending arrow that had come so very close to striking him directly in the face, but had instead lodged itself in the roof not a hair's breadth away from his ear. Perhaps Morgana’s hands had shaken too much? Perhaps some last feelings of sentiment made her aim away at the last second? She herself did not know either.

Her father looked back to her, baleful eyes clouding over in blind fury once again.

“You’re going to pay for that.”

Morgana clenched her eyes shut and braced for impact as the chair leg came swinging down. With a sickening crack the wood shattered.

Right on her father’s knee.

The brutish man howled in agony and fell back, crawling away from her with one arm as his other clutched his injured leg. His glare turned upwards, staring at something directly above Morgana’s head. “What the-... Who the fek are you?!”

Morgana looked up to finally notice the familiar man who had appeared out of thin air behind her, his arms outstretched in what she faintly recognised as a Da’riya stance. He wore that same lopsided smirk he usually did, but there was a noticeable tightness to it that had her on edge. And those eyes…

The sightless white was gone, replaced by two pools of mercury silver. They glowed hauntingly in the dark, like twin moons peeking out from behind a storm cloud. And they were livid, no doubt about that. Filled with the contemptuous wrath of one that looked down on another and saw them as a lesser being that itself.

“I am the father of curses!” Tio hissed, his voice accompanied by some rasping echo that seemed to chill the room. “And you have dared try to harm my apostle!”

Like a vengeful spectre he raised a finger to point at her father, and perhaps it was a trick of the faint light but Morgana could have sworn she saw the shadows on the walls flickering like candles. The unearthly chill in the room intensified, bringing with it an oppressive atmosphere that made her hairs stand on end. Tio floated further up into the air, the echoes of his voice multiplying a hundredfold until each word was spoken by a ghostly chorus.

“Morik du Fai, thy sin is wrath. Thou treats those who depend upon thee with violence and scorn, trading affection for anger. Thou fails to recognise the duty thou owes to thine childe, and in doing so prove unworthy of keeping her. Therefor I, Tio, do curse thee forevermore.”

Morik gasped in agony, his hands shooting to his back as if trying to ward off phantom swords. Feverishly he ripped his shirt off, and Morgana watched in terrified awe as black runes of an unfamiliar language seared themselves into his bare skin. Suddenly a bulge appeared in Morik’s throat and his hands shot back over to cover his mouth, eyes wide in terror as the bulge wormed its way up his throat to his mouth. With a retching noise Morik spat something out of his mouth: a grey stone egg, no bigger than the size of a chicken’s, laced with ashen black veins.

“Thou shalt sire a new kind of progeny now.” Tio continued, his voice laced with some malicious satisfaction. “Wherever thy go that egg shall be with thee. It will never break, never burn, never go away. And like any childe so shall it learn from thee, and so one trial shall it hatch into a form befitting of the world as you have shown it. Treat it with violence and so it shall be violent unto you. Neglect it, and it will wrap itself around you and never let you go. Treat it with fear, and it shall devote its existence to making you afraid.”

Morik was, understandably, terrified past the point of words, and scurried back to cower in the corner of the room as far away from the egg as he could. As if echoing Tio’s warning a pulse of amber light, like a heartbeat, ran down the egg’s black veins, and the egg grew just a fraction bigger. It was the first time ever that Morgana had seen her father look so small, huddled away in the corner with a thin beam of light highlighting dirty back hair so similar to hers and a unshaven face contorted into a picture of pure terror. It was the first time he’d ever seemed so… vulnerable. So human, rather than the inhuman juggernaut her mind’s eye had painted him as.

In the end he was just a man.

But that wasn’t the case for everyone in the room.

Tio’s feet graced the floor as he gently set himself down, the shadows returning to their stillness and the haunting chill in the air fading with the glowing silver of his eyes. Yet the silver had not gone completely. Two newly healed eyes, iris’s that same cold mercury colour, stared down at her father no longer with contempt, but with perhaps just a hint of pity.

“But there is still hope for you Morik.” Tio whispered softly, voice no longer accompanied by echoes. “Treat it with love, as a real parent should, and it will love you back. It will never be human, but whether it hatches into a monster is up to you. Learn from your mistakes and this curse need not bring you suffering. There’s still time to change.”

And just like that he turned away, leaving the once proud warrior whimpering in the corner with the cursed egg in front of him. Mercury eyes locked onto hers, and then blinked in surprise.

“Hold up, I can see again?”

Morgana found herself taken aback by how quickly the ruthless, vindictive god changed personas at the drop of a hat, returning to being the silly clown she’d known before. He poked at the corners of his eyes with comically exaggerated curiosity, then reached to the amulet around his neck and looked at one of the charms hanging off it.

“Delroth’s last charm… Guess it ended up triggering in response to my power? Hmm… wish I’d thought to use it for that earlier. Ah well, you live and you learn.”

He held out a hand to help her up off the floor, which she nervously accepted. But if he noticed her unease he didn’t comment on it, instead scratching his cheek awkwardly. “Hey, so-... Sorry for jumping the gun and calling you my apostle earlier. I was in the zone and kind of got carried away. I- What I’m trying to say is-...” He struggled for words, as if he couldn’t decide how to say what he wanted to say. Eventually with a resigned sigh he gave up.

“Do you want to be my follower?”

“Your follower?” Morgana looked at him as if he’d grown a second head, then a snap of irritation crossed her face. “Hold on, so all those times I was begging you earlier you wouldn’t do a damn thing to help me, but now you’re suddenly willing to give it to me after I’ve just finished the thing I needed it for? What the hell?!”

Tio raised his hands in a placating gesture. “That’s true, but that’s sort of the point. That thing I was talking about earlier. You remember?”

Morgana’s blank look answered for her.

“Okay, so it’s like this.” Tio sighed. “At the beginning of all this you needed my mark to give you the confidence to fight back. If you didn’t have it you wouldn’t have had the confidence to challenge your lot in life. That means that any confidence you gained once I gave it to you wouldn’t have been in yourself, but rather in the blessing. If we’d started off a god-follower relationship on that foot you would have quickly come to rely upon my mark, and by extension myself, to be there for you when you needed it.” He frowned, voice taking on more sombre note. “But I won’t be able to always answer that expectation. Like I said before I’m a cursed man, and will no doubt disappoint you before the end. If you had come to rely upon my assistance like that, then when that time comes you could perish.”

“But today however you proved otherwise.” Tio eyes lit up in pride. “Just now you fought without my power, without any idea at all that I’d be here to assist you. And sure you missed,” he glanced over to the arrow stuck in the ceiling, “from point blank range, which I’m never going to let you live down, but what matters is that you had the will to stand on your own two feet, the will to fight back even if you had to do so all on your own. That attitude shows me that now you would have confidence it yourself before my blessing, and that on the day I disappoint you you’ll press on even without me. That is the attitude that I need in those who would follow me.”

He smiled goofily. “So what do you say hotshot? Want to join team Tio? I’ll admit that you’ll be the first person I’ve ever marked, and I’m not exactly swimming in powers right now, but we’ll both get stronger over time. Besides there’re other perks too. I like to be more personable than my brethren, so you’re welcome to crash at my tower in Scalvoris for as long as you want, and I’ll teach you all the skills and tricks you’ll need to go on adventure just like I did. You’d be my ward of sorts. What do you say?”

Morgana’s eyes flickered over to the form of her father crying in the corner. This was what he could do when he was weak? Brand curses upon people’s backs and make them vomit monster eggs? Gods knew what he’d be able to do when he was stronger! A large part of Morgana found herself afraid of the harmless looking man before her, unable to forget the feeling of that crushing chill or the vindictive fury that’d burnt in those glowing silver eyes. Was she really safe serving someone who was like that? Someone who could hide that side of themself away so easily behind the face of a cheeky rogue.

Maybe. Maybe not. There was no way to know. What she did know however was that she couldn’t stay in Yaralon any longer, and Tio’s offer of free lodging and training to be an adventurer was very tempting.

“If I say yes,” she began cautiously, staying alert for even the slightest warning that she was angering the Immortal stood before her, “it doesn’t have to mean forever does it? If I decide that following you isn’t working out for me there’s no reason why you won’t take back your blessing and we just peacefully part ways right? You won’t lay a curse on me for defying your will or something will you?”

“Me? Nah, I’m not like that git Featherbutt.” Tio replied, briefly losing himself in the memory of something before his attention snapped back to her. “It’ll be like a business contract. You devote acts of worship to me, I give you power. If one of us is no longer comfortable with the arrangement we discuss it like civilised people, sever the blessing and then amicably part ways. Sound good to you?”

It did sound good, too good to be true in fact. And yet Morgana detected no hint of a lie from him. There was just one thing that she didn’t understand.

“Why do you want a follower anyway? You clearly have doubts as to if you’re up for the task of being someone others rely on, nor do I possess any rare skills or abilities that’d be useful to you. Why me?”

For a moment a look that could only be described as complicated crossed Tio’s face. Doubt, regret, sorrow, traces of all these and more pulled the muscles in Tio’s face into the sort of expression painters would have loved to capture.

“I-... I suppose I’m lonely.” He admitted gently, silver eyes cast downwards in embarrassment. “I don’t tend to get close to many people, but there was someone who I considered akin to family not too long ago: an apprentice you might say. She was-... she was like a little sister to me, maybe even a daughter. She was a true genius and I taught her everything I knew, but I didn’t see the sort of person I was shaping her into.” He glanced back at the cursed egg laying still on the floor. “I suppose in a sense it’s not so different from that egg. I showered her with nothing but pride, and had the gall to be surprised when she became too prideful for her own good.”

“Then one day I made a terrible mistake, and for the next twenty arcs I found myself trapped alone, never knowing if I’d ever be free. Thankfully I met an old friend and he helped me to escape, but during the time I’d been away I’d become a different person, as had she. I returned expecting things to be the same as they were when I left, but… they weren’t.” He closed his eyes mournfully as some unseen but painful memory struck him. “She betrayed me, and I have nobody but myself to blame for that. But looking at you I’m-... I’m reminded of how she was before I did everything wrong, before I led her down a dark path without even realising it.” His lips tugged up into the shadow of a smile, but it was clear his heart wasn’t in it. “I guess I’m just a lonely old man at the end of the day, and when you first offered a prayer to anyone who would listen I felt that same loneliness in you too. So I thought that maybe, if it’s alright with you, the two of us could be lonely together?”

He punctuated his final words with a offered hand, and the suspicion in Morgana’s eyes softened as she regarded him. At the start he’d seemed so comical, so larger than life, but then just moments ago he’d shown himself to be some force of divine, vengeful power. And now suddenly there was a third side of him as well, one that was more vulnerable and human than any god she’d ever heard of. It was… weird. He was weird, but not in a bad way. Childish, annoying and occasionally terrifying, but somehow relatable in a way she had never before imagined an Immortal could be. Even if he had the body of a god, his heart was still human.

“Okay.” She said at last, schooling her features and brushing away and insecurities. She reached out and took his offered hand. “You’re a complete weirdo, but a nice weirdo I suppose. Let’s give this blessing business one more shot shall we?”

A strange sensation, like cool liquid metal running across her back, had Morgana snatch her hand back a trill later, and she rushed to the window and peeled the bottom of her shirt up to see the reflection of her back in the glass. On it a strange pattern, a mandala of what looked like shiny silver the same colour as Tio’s eyes, spread to form a complete circle. With it came an odd sensation of fullness: not a lot, but like a stomach she’d never noticed before had finally had its hunger satiated and was slightly content. It was cool and calm, and altogether rather pleasant.

“Morgana du Fai, I hereby give you the name of Morgana Silver, my ward and first among my followers.” Tio said theatrically, shooting her not his usual grin but a genuinely happy smile. “So then, next stop Scalvoris? I have a much faster way to travel than by ship.”

Morgana looked back one last time to her father, no longer seeing him for the brute that had dominated her life up until this point but for as he really was: an ordinary man with more rage in his heart than he’d known how to handle, and for the first time she felt a stab of pity for him. Perhaps once upon a time things could have been different for them? Perhaps if mother hadn’t died, or if someone had been there to help him through the trying time after she was gone, they could have been like everyone else? But it was too late for that now. Perhaps he could change, and hopefully the curse put upon him would force him too, but it was too late to repair whatever bond could have been between them.

“Goodbye.” She whispered sadly, stepping away from him and towards Tio. Together she and Tio vanished into thin air, stepping into Emea and leaving Morik alone with the darkness he’d created.

Alone, but for the faintest sounds of tiny claws scratching at the inside of the egg left behind.
word count: 3502
Fast Facts
Noticeable quirks your character can see when threading with Tio.

Floats

Tio floats in the air, usually just a foot off the ground.

Explodeibur

Tio wears a scary looking gauntlet on his right hand that is clearly magical. It creates explosions.

Mercury

Tio has a masked alter ego who leads The Court of Miracles.

Enchanting Voice

Tio's voice has hypnotic properties.
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Rakvald
Approved Character
Posts: 810
Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:17 pm
Race: Immortal
Profession: Degenerate Elite
Renown: 555
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Wealth Tier: Tier 10

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Re: The House Filled with Darkness



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Pygmalion



Tio Silver

Experience: 10 no magic

Knowledge:

Combat: Unarmed (Da'riya) x2
Persuasion x4

Renown: 10

Skill Usage: Appropriate to level.

Loot/Losses: -1 Delroth's Charm

Injuries/Conditions: +1 changed set of eyes.

Consequences: +1 mouth to feed.

Comments: I'm sorry about the lateness of the review.

It was an interesting story, subverting the process of persuasion by finding someone who was willing to be an apostle yet denying her request at first. It seems to me what Tio really wanted was to be sure she was willing to commit to a drastic action to attain his aid. The father of Morgana was very temperamental for a warrior, but that probably just means he's that much more deadly!

Poor Morgana, I hope she has a better life with Tio as his adopted daughter/apostle/whateversheis. I was surprised to see a Yari warrior mistreat a child, without any aid from their guardian spirit. But perhaps she didn't have one? Maybe the Emea fall did something to that whole business, or it never was a thing? Will we ever know? In any event, you'd think with the way children are valued in Yaralon society, someone would intervene... But I guess someone did so yay!

Anyways, I absolutely loved the poetic justice of Tio's curse for the wrathful raider. I wonder how he'll deal with the curse, although it's probably a forgone conclusion that he'll make a mess of it, as he did with his daughter.

If you have any concerns about this review, please PM me about them.




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word count: 268

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