[Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two

A small island with an active volcano, Faldrass is the home to Saoire's school and to the Faldrass Induk.

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Elisabeth Black
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[Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


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Elisabeth had spent the trial laying surprises in Balthazar’s path – it was his birthtrial! From bioluminescent flowers, tea, and notes when he woke, to midtrial lunch, to random notes and presents gifted throughout the trial – all without the young mage actually being present. She had made sure things were going according to plan by mostly following in Balthazar’s wake the entire trial.

It was time for the last pieces of the puzzle – a hopefully quiet dinner in Serenity Garden. She was sure she had thought of everything, wanting to make sure the entire trial was perfect for him to show, instead of telling, him how much he meant to her. It would have been easier to just leave it at one or two things, but Elisabeth didn’t want it to be ‘easy’.

Smoothing down her dress, she fussed with everything just a bit more on the blanket as she waited. Balder should have delivered the last note to Balthazar by then so her company would be arriving any time. Prae had been warned ahead of time of the evening’s event so that had been handled too.

Letting her eyes gaze out over the view afforded by the cliff under the pink tree, the young mage smiled, satisfied with her efforts. Had she access to the mainland and a little more time, perhaps other things could have been done but with the limited resources on hand and a little creativity, she felt it was all-in-all a rather successful surprise.

She just hoped he felt the same…

word count: 268
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two

21 Ashan 721


Elisabeth had lead Balthazar around throughout a very productive trial so he felt better about her desire to celebrate his birth trial than he would have if he hadn't gotten anything done. With the logging underway they could get to the real work at hand and finish up the building projects that had been sitting incomplete. He could afford and enjoy a small break if it meant he got to spend time with her but he wouldn't cancel the training for the settlers as she'd requested. Once he had all her little clues and notes assembled he went through the settlement to the Serenity Garden and through the garden to the beautiful pink tree on the cliff. He found Elisabeth sitting there on a small blanket with some manner of picnic prepared.

Tib'ron accompanied Balthazar through the trial and the various clues that had been left around. He didn't seem as amused by it at Balthazar but Tib'ron rarely seemed amused by anything. Balthazar slowed down as Elisabeth came into view wearing a beautiful dress. He felt underdressed after seeing her but he didn't stop in his approach. He moved forward, closer to her and her delightful little set up. "You look beautiful." He said, unwilling or unable to keep that thought from coming out. He wasn't looking at the picnic she'd set up anymore, just her. "You've gone through a lot of trouble for this, haven't you?" He offered her a hand to help her onto her feet. They could sit and eat but he always liked looking off the cliff while he was standing. It was a better angle to see it all from.

word count: 297

Visible Mutations/ Marks

Mutations
Defiance: Skin always glows faintly and he is warm to the touch. His is also the center of a field of static electricity so people get shocked touching him on occasion.
Rupturing: Orange etheric cracks spider-web up his arms to his elbows. His eyes and the glowing cracks going down his cheeks glow dark blue.
Transmutation: He has a series of emerald, glowing cracks on his right pectoral.
Marks
Bellinos: His fingernails are always black. The color fades into his fingers.
Celarion: A dim glowing ring surrounds his left forearm.
Palenon: A silver lightning shaped mark about the size of a hand stretching up towards his torso.

Scars

  • Oops, Oops, Ouch: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks on Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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Elisabeth Black
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


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Arc 721, 21 Ashan

She was facing the path leading to her spot under the tree, when cerulean eyes found the one Elisabeth had been waiting for, smiling. It didn’t matter how many times she looked at him or how often she saw him – Balthazar always made her heart race. True the first time they met; truer that trial.

Watching him walk up to her, the young mage was almost rendered speechless at his first words, which were not the words she had expected to hear from him. The smile never faltered, but any witty retort she might have had at the moment fell by the wayside. There had been a few select moments in time where he had used those same words – she knew by heart each one. What made them even more special was the fact that he willingly said them in front of his shadow, without apparent hesitation.

There was only one way to answer the beautiful surprise compliment that he had given her.

“Thank you…”

As Balthazar held out his hand to her, Elisabeth took it gently, rising graceful next to him as he spoke again. ”No trouble. Not totrial. I enjoyed every moment of planning it for you.”

Slipping her hand down to his, lacing fingers through and squeezing it gently, she spoke in soft tones. “I wanted actions to speak louder than words totrial. You’ve done a lot here, asking extraordinarily little. I wanted to do something special for you.”

There were a million things she could have said, all whirling around in her mind, struggling to get out…but she held the tide, for him. It was his trial, and her words could wait for another time.

“I’m planning a better dinner picnic when I have the chance to get some of your favorite foods from Scalvoris Town, but I didn’t want the trial to pass without us acknowledging it somehow.”

Letting her eyes slip out over the cliff, she admired the exceptional view again, giving a happy, contented sigh. “It really is a beautiful view. Best view on the island.” Turning to regard the man she loved, Elisabeth grinned softly. “Well, second best.”

"Happy birthtrial, Balthazar."


word count: 368
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


21 Ashan 721


The Ever Complicated Life of Balthazar Black: A Man Who Wants To Say Something He Won't Say Because of Guards Watching Him would have been an incredibly long book title but it would also have summed up the recent experience of the former mage fairly well. Be it little criticism he considered fairly valid or deeper feelings he wanted to but would not express in front of them. This little event gave some leeway. There was no disguising that she'd done all of this for him and made a great many people go out of their way to deliver little messages to him. What was the expected response? What would the guards have done had it happened to one of them? Balthazar doubted it would ever have happened to Tib'ron but anything was possible. She said many nice things he did not agree with. She said he'd done a lot but he felt he could do more. She said he'd asked little but he felt he drove his people hard. She wanted to do something special for him but he thought every trial should be special.

Balthazar smirked when Elisabeth said she wanted to do something bigger when she had the chance to get some of his favorite foods from Scalvoris Town. He didn't want her to leave. Especially not to simply celebrate him again. She'd already spent the entire trial away from him leaving little things behind when he would have preferred she be by his side working with him. He didn't want her to go away for what felt like a selfish celebration. It wasn't as personally reflective as he was used to. However he would let her do what she needed to do to feel whatever she needed to feel given their circumstances and he'd participate to a degree he found acceptable. "My favorite foods aren't in Scalvoris Town but I'm interested to see what you get." Balthazar said as his smirk grew into a smile. "Indeed, the second best." He squeezed her and a little.

"Thank you, for everything." It was not conventional but he appreciated the sentiment behind what she was doing. He gestured towards her picnic but did not mention anything about the brevity of time they would really have. They could eat, but there would be no late night walk on the beach unless they were walking to train. As they settled down, Balthazar asked a question that had been lingering in the back of his mind. "What about Viden made you so interested in birthtrials? Twenty something arcs and I've never done this much." Normally it was just a bar with friends or a few bars. "I wasn't expecting all this."

word count: 466

Visible Mutations/ Marks

Mutations
Defiance: Skin always glows faintly and he is warm to the touch. His is also the center of a field of static electricity so people get shocked touching him on occasion.
Rupturing: Orange etheric cracks spider-web up his arms to his elbows. His eyes and the glowing cracks going down his cheeks glow dark blue.
Transmutation: He has a series of emerald, glowing cracks on his right pectoral.
Marks
Bellinos: His fingernails are always black. The color fades into his fingers.
Celarion: A dim glowing ring surrounds his left forearm.
Palenon: A silver lightning shaped mark about the size of a hand stretching up towards his torso.

Scars

  • Oops, Oops, Ouch: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks on Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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Elisabeth Black
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


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Arc 721, 21 Ashan



Balthazar Black was a complicated man. Certainly, and without doubt, a man she loved, but complicated. He always thought he could do more, help more…and tormented himself when he couldn’t. Elisabeth had watched him go through the same thing over and over but was powerless to help. It was part of who he was, and she didn’t want that to change. It was one of the many traits she loved about him.

“Oh? You should tell me about them sometime. I’d love to know.” It was a trivial matter, sure, but she enjoyed knowing the things he enjoyed. The smile he gave her when she alluded to him being the best view on the island, and his resulting comment almost made her blush. Almost. So close.

Smiling as he thanked her, Elisabeth squeezed his hand gently. “You are welcome, love.” What else did you say to someone when they thanked you? She truly hadn’t minded organizing it, but it wasn’t until they sat, and he asked his question that she figured out, perhaps, what was going on in his mind. Oh! He thought it was a Viden thing.

Laughing a bit, she quickly got him a bowl of stew, handing it over with a spoon, thinking about what she wanted to say about that. “Well, it doesn’t have anything to do with Viden. At least not in the sense you are thinking. I’ve never celebrated my birthtrials. Or holidays in general. Never seemed to be any point really. Your dagger? I think that might be the first gift I’ve ever given anyone…and my sword and armor, first gifts received.”

Shrugging a bit, she continued, grabbing a bowl of stew for herself. “Holidays, to me now, feel like more the opportunity to be grateful for something. So, when I remembered your birthtrial, I decided I wanted to show you, using all these little acts, how grateful I am that you are part of my life. You show me every trial how much I mean to you in little ways. Starting the campfire in the morning. Touring the camp with me during the trial. Trusting me to help you. I just wanted to return the favor. I don’t take you or this life we have for granted.”

Glancing over at him, Elisabeth considered what she wanted to say next. Balthazar had mixed feelings about her words. Sometimes, he loved all her words, allowing them to drown out some of his darker thoughts, and sometimes he wanted her to be a bit more direct and concise. He definitely kept her on her toes, but sometimes there was a specific thought the young mage wanted to express. It was a balance, trying to explain without overexplaining.

“Balthazar, I want to be with you always.”

Huh. Maybe it wasn’t so hard after all. Blunt had never been her strong suit and yet, here she was, being blunt. Or, at least, it was a start.

word count: 505
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


21 Ashan 721


Tell her about his favorite things and make it easy on Elisabeth? Never. She liked to analyze him, or he assumed she did based on how often she was analyzing him, so he'd let her piece the bits together to figure out where his favorite food came from. It wouldn't be incredibly difficult to figure out but he knew the answer. It seemed that when someone knew the answer, the riddle or puzzle they gave you could have been as nonsensical as they wanted and they'd assume you should have been able to figure it out. Balthazar listened to Elisabeth while she served them the stew she'd prepared and he took his bowl in his hands. He could feel the warmth of the bowl against his palms and it reminded him what his skin used to feel like.

She spoke of how she did not normally celebrate her birthtrial or other holidays while she'd been growing up and Balthazar only became more confused. If she had no tradition to draw from, how was this what she'd come up with to celebrate it? Elisabeth explained that holidays felt like opportunities for her to celebrate what she was grateful for and Balthazar thought to point out that each holiday typically had a meaning behind it that was the intended point of the celebration but he did not. He couldn't. Not once she'd begun talking about the things he did for her that showed her he cared. She did things for him as well but he would not speak to her as she was speaking to him with Tib'ron. Had it been Miranda or maybe even Trean, he would have said more but instead he smiled and ate some of his stew while she spoke.

She said she wanted to be with him always about a trill after he'd put a spoonful of stew into his mouth and he seemed to push it to the side of his cheek so he could respond to her before chewing. "Then don't go anywhere, Elisabeth, I'm not going to make you leave." He chewed and swallowed his food. "Good stew." He said with a small smile. He might have missed deeper meaning but that was because he didn't understand what she was saying. They lived together and they spent the majority of their time wedged between the Badlands and the Serenity Garden in a little village of their own making. What more could they need to stay together?

"It's strange, a little, to me, that you chose this trial to celebrate. In the culture of Scalvoris," which he'd picked up through his time living in Scalvoris more than through actual research, "you're expected to change the trial you celebrate your birth if someone in your immediate family dies." The trial Balthazar was born, both of his parent had died. By the traditions of Scalvoris, he was supposed to pick another trial and he never had. He celebrated the twenty first because he did not really celebrate most of the time so it had never mattered. Now that he thought about it... perhaps he should have been in the tent honoring them instead of at the garden. No, he decided Vri had more domains than Death and it was important to honor them all. "So it's not a very important trial to Scavlorians, or to our settlers." Even if it was to her. There was a line between self indulgence and the good of the people that you had to bear in mind when you were in the positions they were, but he said nothing more of that.

"What made you decide to hide all trial rather than spend it with me?" Balthazar asked, taking another spoonful of his stew and looking briefly towards Tib'ron before back to Elisabeth. She had the former mage where she wanted, but smalltalk was never his forte. So what did she want to do with the time she had left?
word count: 680

Visible Mutations/ Marks

Mutations
Defiance: Skin always glows faintly and he is warm to the touch. His is also the center of a field of static electricity so people get shocked touching him on occasion.
Rupturing: Orange etheric cracks spider-web up his arms to his elbows. His eyes and the glowing cracks going down his cheeks glow dark blue.
Transmutation: He has a series of emerald, glowing cracks on his right pectoral.
Marks
Bellinos: His fingernails are always black. The color fades into his fingers.
Celarion: A dim glowing ring surrounds his left forearm.
Palenon: A silver lightning shaped mark about the size of a hand stretching up towards his torso.

Scars

  • Oops, Oops, Ouch: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks on Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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Elisabeth Black
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


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Arc 721, 21 Ashan


As they sat and ate, the conversation ranged a bit. Elisabeth was never one for small talk but when the other party was checking their words, it was difficult to do anything but that.

When he simply stated that to be together, she just needed to stay with him, her eyes glanced to the shadow, biting her lip. There was something she wanted to say…but it was intensely private, and she had not taken the shadow into consideration. It was something she had planned on broaching with Balthazar during dinner but as it turned out, maybe it was not the best time. Knowing how much he protected their relationship from report, she did not imagine he would want this out there for public knowledge. Especially not with Tib'ron. Maybe one of the others. Maybe.

No, she couldn’t. She wouldn’t. She wanted to…but she wouldn’t put him in that position. The conversation would have to wait.

“I don’t plan on leaving. I just wanted you to know I was thinking about us.”
She almost said future, but that wasn't right. Elisabeth was learning to appreciate the present and what she had, trying to squeeze every ounce of happiness out of what they had together.

He spoke of why she chose his birthtrial to celebrate, and then of the traditions of Scalvoris. To be honest, she was only aware that they used their birthtrials as more of a reflective holiday, which is why she had been careful to only include people that she knew would be willing to help her, and that she could trust. As well, she never told any of the settlers that it was his birthtrial – only the Element guards knew that. Elisabeth had done her best to make sure her plan were specific to them.

Beyond that, she certainly didn’t know about changing one’s birthtrial. She had known his parents had died that trial, yes. But he was missing the larger point of what she was trying to tell him. “I understand, Balthazar. I was careful. I have no desire to disrespect anyone’s traditions or culture. Even if it hadn’t been your birthtrial, I might have done the same thing. I just wanted to show you my gratitude.” There were things that weren’t important to Balthazar…or the settlers, but they were to her. Just as the reverse was true. The young mage was trying to be mindful of the settlement as a whole. To everyone else besides the elements, it was simply dinner.

His next question caught Elisabeth a bit off guard, laughing a bit. “Certainly not because I wanted to be…but there were things I needed to do without you seeing and you are very clever, and I’m not very stealthy so it took time. If I had my way, I’d spend all trial, every trial with you.”

She noted Balthazar’s look to Tib'ron, and then her. There was a piece of herself that deflated a bit. There had been this grand idea in her mind about how to show him, instead of telling him, how grateful she was that he was part of her life. But in reality, it wasn’t turning out how she had planned. There were many, many other things she would have done, but she had done the best with what she could. Elisabeth had hoped he would understand the intention, but it was clear that something was getting lost in translation and unable to explain, it would have to remain so until they could actually talk freely.

All the things she wanted to do, they couldn’t. Instead, she had learned to accept what was freely given to her – curling up against him at night. The random quick kiss. The occasional touch. But what could she give to him that was intimate but appropriate to what they were able to?

That’s when she thought of it.

“Pick a memory you want to see. Any memory from my perspective.” Glancing at him with a smile, she considered what she was offering to him. Any moment in time from her life, she would allow him to see through her eyes.

word count: 711
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


21 Ashan 721


Balthazar was a fool in many regards but he was not blind to what was clearly before him. In the moment he had thought very little of it but upon seeing Elisabeth's reaction to his words, he realized what she wanted. She looked at the shadow. She was putting the pieces together to figure out why she had not gotten the response she wanted and so he put together the pieces to figure out what it was exactly that she did want. He would not say it with Tib'ron there. He might have with one of the others. Elisabeth moved on as well and so Balthazar did not say anything more. She claimed she might have done the same thing even if it was not his brithtrial and he had a strange measure of doubt creep up. It seemed unlikely she'd have gone through all this effort on any random trial for him. She'd have certainly waited for one event or the other. In regard to the question he'd asked her, she claimed she was being careful because he was clever. He laughed a little and shook his head.

"I wasn't looking very hard. If not for you sending Balder, I would have missed all of it working on the trees." He was glad he had not. It lead him there with her and whether or not she seemed to realize it, he was enjoying the time. The larger concept of this grand game they'd played amused him, a small riddle from someone who cared to try and capture his focus. However there was little they could do to celebrate that he would be comfortable with less than eleven trials after his trial. For all her good intentions, it seemed Elisabeth had not seen that. It was not entirely her fault. Balthazar hadn't figured out the guard schedule yet so why would Elisabeth have? So much might have been different if it was anyone but Tib'ron watching them. "I'm glad I didn't. This is nice, all of it. I appreciate the sentiment." He smiled a little and nudged her, "Brace yourself, I'm going to have to find a way to do something bigger for you now." Not everything was a competition, but was it bad to compete to make the other person happy?

Elisabeth offered to show him a memory and Balthazar's brow furrowed slightly. He understood the intention behind this as well but she was asking him to use his ability, not using one of her own to transmit the memory. He would do it for her because he felt like he'd disappointed her thus far and he didn't want to continue that, but he did not know what memory he wanted from her. He thought back to what Vri had said to him about trading for power and it made Balthazar feel a little worse that he was agreeing but he was doing it out of love. Elisabeth wanted to show him something and with Tib'ron watching their options were limited. Balthazar would have to say what he wanted to see and so Tib'ron would know what to report, but only Balthazar could see it unless he made a second memento for Tib'ron.

"Tell me about the first time you saw snow," Balthazar offered, "if I can't picture it, I'll watch it instead? I'd like to talk. I like... hearing you."
word count: 587

Visible Mutations/ Marks

Mutations
Defiance: Skin always glows faintly and he is warm to the touch. His is also the center of a field of static electricity so people get shocked touching him on occasion.
Rupturing: Orange etheric cracks spider-web up his arms to his elbows. His eyes and the glowing cracks going down his cheeks glow dark blue.
Transmutation: He has a series of emerald, glowing cracks on his right pectoral.
Marks
Bellinos: His fingernails are always black. The color fades into his fingers.
Celarion: A dim glowing ring surrounds his left forearm.
Palenon: A silver lightning shaped mark about the size of a hand stretching up towards his torso.

Scars

  • Oops, Oops, Ouch: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks on Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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Elisabeth Black
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


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Arc 721, 21 Ashan


Elisabeth was an observant girl, but if she had any indication that he had an inkling of what was on her mind, it wasn’t apparent. The conversation simply drifted on, allowing them to consider whatever it was they thought they knew individually.

She hadn’t considered that Balthazar might have missed all her work had she not thought to send Balder directly to him. While not a pleasant thought, it definitely was something that could have been a likely outcome, so Elisabeth chose to focus on the fact that it hadn’t come to that.

Smiling softly when he nudged her, the young woman gently allowed herself to reach out and rub his arm affectionately. The young mage wished other people could see him as she did. He was complicated, certainly. In her time with him, the complexities of the relationship they shared were evident…but she wouldn’t have traded it for anything. Working with him in Haven, trial in and trial out, she was able to see first-hand the type of man he was. Brash, yes. He wasn’t one for politics. Of few words, of course. The more words one said, the more known to others a person was…and Balthazar was a private man. He allowed people to see what he wanted them to see. Elisabeth was afforded much more due to her proximity to him, affection for her, and the fact that he allowed his guard to drop around her, yet there were still things he was having a hard time letting even her see.

It had taken a while for her to understand that he had been used to being alone before her. Of course, there had been times when he collaborated with others, but he had been able to make decisions based on what was right for him. Elisabeth entering his life had changed that. They both made choices based on their shared circumstances, and it had taken time to acclimate.

If Elisabeth had a wish, it was that others could see the Balthazar that he only let her see. The Balthazar that guarded their relationship fiercely. The one that had, in the midst of his own trial, offered her assurances that everything would be alright. The one that still blushed on occasion when he was flustered, not knowing how to express a sentiment or emotion.

“I’m glad you didn’t miss it either.” His declaration that he needed to do something bigger for her birthtrial made her grin a bit. “Ut oh. That sounds ominous.” It was true – they competed a lot. In a way, for them, it wasn’t really competing, though. As hard as it was to understand, what they did was a very unique form of flirtation, and Elisabeth enjoyed it very much. He teased her relentlessly sometimes, but had he not loved her, he wouldn't have bothered.

Instead of seeing a memory, he wanted to hear one. The way he conveyed his wish to her would sound odd to anyone else, but he had said the same thing before, so she understood what he meant. He wanted her words…so words he would have.

Moving closer to him, she bent her knees, drawing them up underneath her, smoothing down her dress a bit while thinking of which memory she wanted to tell him. “Well, how about the first time I really saw snow? I mean snow as I see it now.”

Balthazar was aware that snow had something of a magical effect on the young mage, so his request wasn’t unusual in her eyes. She didn’t remember when she first saw snow, but Elisabeth remembered the memory of the evening in question with perfect clarity.

“I was…nine arcs old. I remember that I was taking several classes at the time that required a lot of work and research. Vin and Rilith, the people that found me in that snowbank outside Viden, always pushed me to learn more. They never anticipated having children of their own so I think they were a bit ill-equipped to raise one, so they tried to raise me within a frame of reference they could understand…which was academics.” Elisabeth was grateful for what they had done for her, but she was the first to admit that her childhood had been far from normal.

“I was working in the library, looking for some books. It was late at night and I was very tired. Overwhelmed and exhausted. I was having a hard time keeping everything straight in my head and there was a fair amount of frustration building up. I remember looking out a window briefly and seeing the snowfall start.” Snowfall seemed to always be starting in Viden, so nothing out of the ordinary.

“I remember rising from the table I was working at and just walking outside. Something about the snowfall called me that night. I went out and truly saw it for the first time. These perfect little crystals of ice, falling out of the sky. So simple yet so complex. And when I looked at them, all the chaos and confusion in my mind simply…stopped. At least for that moment.”

Sighing softly, she regarded Balthazar, smiling. “Of course, that all came flooding back eventually, but in time I learned how to harness the effect. Now, it still does the same thing but I’m able to use it to calm my mind and focus – bring order to the chaos.”


word count: 922
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Re: [Haven] A Trial to Remember - Volume Two


21 Ashan 721


"Good, I meant for it to sound ominous." Balthazar said with a small grin in quick response to Elisabeth when she suggested his comment about planning for her birthtrial sounded as such. The conversation moved on and Elisabeth began her story about the first time she'd seen snow. It wasn't the literal first time she'd seen snow which was a little unfortunate but to be expected. Not all memories were untarnished. She'd grown up in Viden and probably seen snow every single trial so how was she supposed to recall the very first? So instead she told him of the one she could remember, the moment she recalled that snow took on the meaning for her that it had now. She was nine arcs old which was hard for Balthazar to imagine. He thought of Elisabeth but... shorter and probably with stubbier limbs. She said she was taking classes which sounded like it must have been incredibly boring.

She probably enjoyed it but he certainly never liked conventional learning. When he was nine he was still working on a farm for his 'adoptive' family, not learning. He'd begun to learn when he forced his way into his former master's life and he'd kept learning in his own way ever since, but Elisabeth took classes that required research. She spoke of Vin and Rilith who she hadn't talked about or too in a while as far as he was aware. He wondered what she thought about that but he put those thoughts aside to focus on what she was telling him about. They raised her in a frame of academics which Balthazar didn't even pretend to understand. What was a frame of academics? Being sent to school when you were young and forced to attend until you were old and became a teacher? What was a normal frame? Life was a strange, fickle. He'd been thinking more and more about it since he began therapy but he wasn't ready to talk about it with Elisabeth so he kept his focus on her story.

She told him about a night studying where nothing seemed to come together and told him how the beginning of snowfall helped her find her center that night. It was good to have something like that. She had the snow, he had her. He was smiling when her story concluded, glad to have heard it and commit it to his memory without seeing it. He could not deny that he did want to witness it as well, but he was content not to. He was no collector of memories, not yet. "Thank you for sharing that with me." He said before looking out over the edge of the cliff. His eyes drifted up to the pink tree lingering a little bit above them and then he addressed his thought from earlier. "Do you ever miss Vin and Rilith? I haven't heard about them in a long time. I don't have anyone left from my past but I would imagine you'd want to be close with the ones you do have."

word count: 529

Visible Mutations/ Marks

Mutations
Defiance: Skin always glows faintly and he is warm to the touch. His is also the center of a field of static electricity so people get shocked touching him on occasion.
Rupturing: Orange etheric cracks spider-web up his arms to his elbows. His eyes and the glowing cracks going down his cheeks glow dark blue.
Transmutation: He has a series of emerald, glowing cracks on his right pectoral.
Marks
Bellinos: His fingernails are always black. The color fades into his fingers.
Celarion: A dim glowing ring surrounds his left forearm.
Palenon: A silver lightning shaped mark about the size of a hand stretching up towards his torso.

Scars

  • Oops, Oops, Ouch: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks on Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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