[Haven] A Night Without Stars

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 Night Without Stars

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Arc 721, 48 Ashan


The young mage tried to end most evenings with a quick meditation session before sleep, finding it helpful in lulling her off to slumber quickly. Truth be told, Balthazar’s presence was the only thing she needed to feel safe in that regard, but mediation helped calm her spark and mind.

Haven was settling into the evening hours, all those who had shown up for the after-dinner training having dispersed. Balthazar was around someplace, tending to a matter but had promised to return shortly so they could enjoy an evening walk on the beach. That left Elisabeth with a bit of time to herself.

Lowering to the warm sand, she pulled down her ponytail, letting raven curls loose to splay over her shoulders and back. Shaking them out a bit, she slowly closed her eyes and let her mind drift off to wherever it wanted to go.

That evening, her mind wanted to consider the future. It wasn’t a place she allowed herself to go very often as being with Balthazar had made her appreciate the here and now much more, but occasionally, her mind wandered that way. During the time they had been incarcerated, she had been deprived of living her daily life with him and once they had been reunited, vowed to never take their trials for granted ever again.

There was only one thing Elisabeth wanted in her life – Balthazar. The rest would figure itself out.

The future, in their lives, tended to be an uncertain place. Why worry about it? Well, for them, in her opinion, they didn’t…. but in terms of the settlement, they had to. Long-term stability was important and because of that, they had to consider growth and a million other little things that were more future-centric than immediate. It wasn’t for them though. It was for the good of the settlement and making sure what they were creating together lasted.

Sighing a bit, her focus was broken by the feel of a cat rubbing up against her. Smiling, Elisabeth peeked an eye open, seeing Storm as he crawled into her lap. Laughing a bit, her hand softly slipped down to his head, rubbing gently. “Well, hello there. Don’t mind me. I wasn’t doing anything important or anything.”

Storm, for his part, was completely unmoved by her sass, meowing in response as he laid his head down against her leg. Grinning, she gently lifted him up, gazing into his eyes. “Oh no. Balthazar will be here soon, so you need to go find a new napping spot.“ Setting him back down on the sand, Storm flicked his tail at the young woman – a sure sign of irritation – and stalked off down the beach to find a warm piece of sand to curl up in, leaving Elisabeth in peace once again. Sighing softly, she realized that she would probably have to soothe his irritation at some point with some bits of fish.


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word count: 500
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Balthazar Black
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Re: [Haven] A Night Without Stars


48 Ashan 721


He was nervous. He didn't know why he was nervous but he was. That's not true, he knew why he was nervous. He wanted to tell her what had happened and he had spent the majority of the trial pitching different ways to tell her to Miranda who almost never responded. He wanted to tell Elisabeth why he'd been so shaken after Immortal's Tongue. Fuego thought it was a good idea but Fuego didn't really understand why Balthazar wouldn't tell someone. Secrets were not the diri's forte. Yet every time it came up in conversation the diri seemed to hide or get very quiet because just like Balthazar, the diri remembered what had happened- including the fear and uncertainty in the final few moments. The nightly training helped keep his mind off of the conversation he wanted to have with Elisabeth but when it was over and the suns were down, Balthazar found himself walking back to the beach to find Elisabeth on an unusually dark night. He'd walked with Silk, Ronan, Balder, and Miranda back to the settlement then returned to the beach with only Miranda. He told her that he was going to tell Elisabeth and Miranda's response was a simple nod. So long as Elisabeth was not harmed, there was no reason to step in.

After that they walked silently through the dark towards the beach. Balthazar remembered the trials he would have been able to see clearly through the darkness and equally be seen clearly in it. He saw Elisabeth on the beach with the cat she'd ironically (or at least ironic in his perspective) named Storm. It was an unusual cat and he was not typically one for pets but he couldn't judge her. Well he could, but he didn't want to. He approached quietly, letting Elisabeth play with the little animal that had been the cause of so much concern once upon a time for a trill before she dismissed it because he was to arrive.

"You could have kept Storm around." Balthazar mused as he walked over to her.
Last edited by Balthazar Black on Thu May 27, 2021 5:00 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 361

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 Night Without Stars


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Arc 721, 48 Ashan


Elisabeth was rarely caught off guard by Balthazar’s approach. Her senses over the season had sharpened dramatically, allowing her the ability to see and hear things others couldn’t. He was quiet, for sure, but the sand giving way beneath his feet caused her to look, laughing as he approached and spoke. “Mr. High and Mighty Storm has begun thinking he rules Haven. I think he has all the settlers fooled into thinking that he’s horribly mistreated. He’s a bit dramatic so it’s alright. He’ll be back soon enough.”

Looking up at him, Elisabeth smiled. So much had happened recently that she didn’t even know where to begin. Well, that wasn’t true. She started with the one thing she knew to be true – She loved Balthazar – and then worked her way out from there.

The missing eight trials. Having come back to Haven, Elisabeth found out very quickly that she had been gone much longer than she realized, and virtually no memory of anything. There was leaving Haven….and then Scalvoris Town. She had gone to get Storm and returned. That was all her memory allowed, and it scared her. Vega’s letter had shed some light on the fact that Immortals were possibly involved but she hadn’t had time to investigate that.

The Trial. That, more or less, had resolved in her mind. There had been consequences, certainly, but both she and Balthazar were working on that situation, together.

Immortal’s Tongue. That had been…a trial. What had started out as simply an outing had turned into something much more serious for all involved. Elisabeth had many feelings about that trial – some good, some bad. Well, mostly bad. She had been aware that something was wrong from early on but hadn’t been able to discern what. Their safety had been in danger, it seemed, almost from the moment they arrived. Her situation had been perilous enough but whatever had happened to Balthazar, that was a whole different thing.

Seeing him as she had, a wave of anger had welled up inside her. Terror had been present there too…but anger had been more prevalent. It wasn’t an emotion she allowed herself to dwell in often, but the moment had demanded it…and even at that, it wasn’t a good enough word to describe how Elisabeth had felt. She accepted that more often than not, it seemed, that she managed to stumble herself into bad situations. The young mage had known that danger would most likely haunt the pair their entire lives. It was just who they were.

But something attacking Balthazar? That was unacceptable to her.

Yet, she had held her tongue, not telling him of the anger and fear she had felt. There had been no need – he generally knew her emotions before she did. Only after being with someone so long could you learn how to interpret the emotions in their features, no matter how hard one tried to hide them. He knew what had happened to her, the attack of the Syroa worshippers and about Cassion’s Eagle, but he had yet to speak of what had happened to himself, and she hadn’t pushed.

To her, the now mattered most. He had taught her that. The past was there if she needed to learn lessons from it, and she had, but they had each other, regardless of what had happened on Immortal’s Tongue, Almund, and even her missing eight trials.

That…was what was important. The now.

"So, what would you like to do this evening? It's a bit dark out here but we could sit and talk...or walk even. I'm open to anything."

word count: 629
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Balthazar Black
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Re: [Haven] A Night Without Stars


48 Ashan 721


Balthazar did not know a great deal about raising animals, even less about raising pets. A mount was one thing but what good was a cat other than to momentarily provide you with a little joy? He was not sure he would ever willingly take it upon himself to raise an animal without some clear gain but Elisabeth's little cat was not a large imposition. Balthazar thought of those he knew like Nir'wei who seemed to have a small army of different animals at their disposal and while he did not think that was a path he'd ever take, he did admire the ability to communicate and coordinate with so many creatures at once. Elisabeth said that Storm thought he rules Haven and Balthazar seemed confused for a moment before he realized she did not mean it literally. He was still getting used to how Elisabeth presented Storm like Balthazar presented Fuego- as if they really did talk to each other.

Things had been a little rough since Elisabeth's return. He wanted answers about what happened and where she had been but none were given. Instead he was forced to accept that she simply had no memory of what had happened. He hated that there were no answers after everything that had happened, including the storm. There was little he could do and pressing the issue did not seem to make anyone feel better about it so he kept his concerns to himself. So long as Faldrass did not begin sinking into the sea, it probably was none of his business anyways. Well, it was his business but it was not something he could concern himself with until the sentence was over.

Elisabeth asked what he wanted to do tonight as if they hadn't spent the entire trial working on things for the settlement. Would it have been too much to simply go to bed and rest? She seemed to think so and her presence did not make the nerves he was dealing with subside at all. Maybe he wouldn't tell her. Maybe there was no need, no point. She had secrets too now, more than just the necklace from her mysterious past. Then again she did not keep that which she'd experienced from him by choice. It was his choice not to tell her of what had happened in Immortal's Tongue despite her choice to tell him what had happened to her. He took a deep breath while he thought about what she'd asked. He was a little sore so he wasn't entirely sold on attempting more training but it wouldn't hurt them to practice more... unless it literally hurt them.

"We could sit and talk, what do you want to talk about?" Balthazar asked as he moved closer and sat down in the sand next to her. "It was your idea after all."

word count: 489

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 Night Without Stars


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Arc 721, 48 Ashan


Elisabeth could see and hear things others couldn’t, and that was especially true with the man she loved. He was a man of few words, and even at that, he was saying fewer than usual – never a good sign. As he sat next to her, she regarded him gently, allowing Balthazar to make his way to the sand before speaking.

Once he did, she gently moved over close to him and replied to his comment. “Well, to start, you can tell me what’s wrong?” Sliding her hand to his, Elisabeth tried to comfort him, letting her fingers tangle with his, but she wasn’t going to be insistent. He had sought her out, but it was up to him to do the actual talking. All she could do is reassure. “We have been together a long time, love. I know your habits and expressions. Something is on your mind. Well, more so than usual I suppose. You always have lots of things on your mind.”

Balthazar had always had an issue of asking for help, so she had simply learned to interpret what he needed from visual and/or physical cues she could note and extrapolate what would help him the most. It was a bit exhausting, but Elisabeth was happy to do it if it would help him in any way. There were other times that he did ask for help, yet in small ways others would miss.

For all her abilities though, she couldn’t begin to figure out what was on his mind. It could have been several things. All she knew is that it was weighing on him, and in her estimation, bothering him enough that it was time...but it was his choice.

Casting a smile his way, she spoke again, laying her head against her knees as cerulean eyes considered him. “Balthazar, I’m here for you. Whatever it is, I want to help, if only to listen. But if you aren't ready, that's alright too. I'm always here for you.”

word count: 346
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Balthazar Black
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Re: [Haven] A Night Without Stars


48 Ashan 721


For all the times he told her not to analyze him, she never did quite manage to stop. She called it caring and claimed she just wanted to know what was going on with him but it never felt less like he was being probed. He was willing to talk about things but it always had to be at his pace and sometimes she probed too hard- so caught up in trying to be what he needed that she wasn't herself, which was what he needed. He'd come to tell her something he was already nervous about and being outright told she could tell something was wrong was not received well. If she could tell, what was to stop the people of Haven or his guards or his shadows from knowing? They all spent an equal amount of time with him these trials. So when she probed him with what felt like a demand that he tell her what was wrong and she took his hand in her's, Balthazar pulled his hand away. He didn't want to be touched right now. If she wasn't going to let him pretend to be fine, he wouldn't. What was wrong?

"You left for a short trip, disappeared for ten trials, and came back without any explanation as to what happened." He said in a very point blank way as he stared out into the dark water on the beach. "Saoire said you were safe but... the ring kept going off." He'd considered removing it a lot but could never quite bring himself to do it. As much dread and worry as it caused him to feel the ring go off and know he could do nothing to help her, he kept it on because he would have rather known than not. "I was worried, I still am. Gaps in memory are rarely good things and I just want all our trouble to behind us." Mummers Ball had been nearly ruined by his memory betraying him and while the memory of his death haunted him, there was a comfort in knowing it was real, had happened, and was behind him. Elisabeth had always been a puzzle. First it was the mystery of her necklace and not it was the missing time but this time he knew the potential enemies who could have acted on her on the other islands... or he thought he did... so he worried more than he was intrigued.

"Come back to the house with me, we can talk more there. I'm beginning to find the dark... disturbing." Balthazar said as he looked up into the empty sky. Where had all the stars gone? All the light in the night, gone. He knew Elisabeth took comfort in the stars and so the absence of them must have meant more to her than him so he didn't say anything to draw more attention to it. It would be easier to talk where he could see a little more clearly but he had another reason for inviting her back there.
word count: 519

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 Night Without Stars


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Arc 721, 48 Ashan

His voice was different. As he spoke of the trials she had been gone, that’s what she noticed. He spoke of being worried. Well, she was too, but realized there was little she could do about it. The very fact he was telling her of his concern though, that was new. It hadn’t been the first time she had been in trouble – that had been Immortal’s Tongue. He had told her in Almund that he would always worry about her, and while she had been in danger on Immortal's Tongue, the danger had passed by the time he had been made aware of it. This time, there were unknowns floating out there.

As he pulled his hand away from hers, she sighed softly. Touch had always been a way to connect with him, but he wasn’t allowing that then, so Elisabeth simply sat there and listened. She offered no words in response to what he said for the moment. It wasn’t her fault she couldn’t remember. She had tried.

As he rose and suggested they go back to their home, she nodded, rising gracefully, and following, offering a few soft words about the sky. “The stars should be there…” Now that he mentioned it, it was a bit disturbing, the darkness. Elisabeth normally loved the dark but there was something extremely unusual about it that she found disconcerting.

Finally, she felt the need to address what he had said. “Balthazar, I’ve tried to remember. It’s just not there.” They had opposite problems at the moment – she couldn’t remember…and he remembered everything. He had been the one to deal with the fallout from everything while she simply couldn’t find the memories.

As they made their way up the beach, Storm found the pair once again, curiously swishing his tail back and forth. Offering up a curious ‘meow’, he followed in Balthazar’s wake, trying to catch the man’s feet but always just a bit too slow, coming up with bits of sand instead.

word count: 349
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Balthazar Black
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Re: [Haven] A Night Without Stars


48 Ashan 721


Touch had always been Elisabeth's way to connect, but when he found himself in moods like this Balthazar tended not to like touch. He didn't like touch in general because he felt like people who put their hands on you were trying to take something or distract you, but made exceptions for Elisabeth because he knew what it meant to her. She agreed to leave the starless night with him and addressed what he'd said about her memory while they were on the way back to their house. She claimed she had tried to remember and found nothing which Balthazar equated to little effort. He knew you could not magically produce memories but you could always investigate. Everyone left a trail, some trails larger than others.

"Elisabeth, I remember what it was like not to have the memory I do now. I know what it is like to be missing pieces, even if I can't anymore." Balthazar said in a calm but somehow still frustrated tone, "It does not make it easier that it is not your fault, just more frustrating." Balthazar explained as Storm reached them and began following the trio. Balthazar paid the cat very little attention while they walked, instead focusing on his own thoughts and trying to work through them to reach a more level tone. Why wasn't it easier? Because there was no one to blame. Why did he need someone to blame, why wasn't it enough that Elisabeth was back and safe? Because when you stopped holding people accountable for things, people would start acting as if they would not be held accountable. What does accountable mean to him? That was where Balthazar stopped his imaginary conversation and it happened to be outside the door to the house, which he unlocked and opened for Elisabeth, Storm, and Miranda.

While he held the door open for them, he looked out once more at the dark sky with insatiable curiosity in the back of his mind.

Last edited by Balthazar Black on Sat May 22, 2021 3:34 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 339

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.
User avatar
Elisabeth Black
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Posts: 1726
Joined: Tue Sep 29, 2020 3:51 am
Race: Human
Profession: Little Wonder-Bunny of Anger
Renown: 1035
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Wealth Tier: Tier 8

Re: [Haven] A Night Without Stars


Image
Arc 721, 48 Ashan

Contrary to what Balthazar Black thought, Elisabeth was putting effort into trying to piece together what had happened to her. Unfortunately, limited access to resources and nine trials wasn’t a lot to work with, but she was doing what she could. Using meditation, she had tried to work through her mind, seeing if she couldn’t sort something herself before involving others but thus far, it had proven unsuccessful.

Her thoughts moved away from what he felt about the situation to how she felt. Perhaps she hadn’t acknowledged that in all its brilliant glory. What was it like to have eight missing trials from one’s memory? Terrifying, especially knowing that his ring had signaled to him repeatedly that she needed him. It was hard to know if that meant danger or something else, but quite obviously something had happened.

Once she had been made aware of the entirety of the situation, fear slowly crept in, yet she kept it hidden away. Elisabeth dealt with it by throwing herself into Haven and making sure everyone had what they needed from her, but the emotion lingered. There was no outlet for it, other than work, and she knew that would only last for so long.

Glancing down at Storm, she gave the creature a small smile before following Balthazar into their home. She had decided not to respond to his comments for there was little she could add. Instead, her mind whirled with new ideas of how she might be able to get information about those eight trials. The Elements certainly would have already reported to Kura that she had returned to the settlement late, with missing memories, but it wouldn’t hurt to send her a letter as well to see if she knew anything. Perhaps a return letter to Vega as well. Vega had tried to warn Haven about ‘problems’ Xiur had told her about, and only bad timing had kept that information from being passed on. Regardless, Elisabeth needed to write her a ‘thank you’ for at least trying. As well, Vega was experienced with odd situations, at least as far as Elisabeth knew. Perhaps she knew something?

Grabbing her parchment and quill, she quietly moved over to the nearby table and began drafting a letter to Vega....

Last edited by Elisabeth Black on Sat May 15, 2021 4:56 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 386
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Balthazar Black
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Re: [Haven] A Night Without Stars


48 Ashan 721


When Elisabeth, the cat, and Miranda had come inside, Balthazar closed the door and walked across the front room to the door on the right side at the back of the house. He slipped into his room with Miranda right behind him and came back out about a bit later with something in his mouth and Miranda trailing behind him with a small grin on her face. Balthazar was grinning too. He felt good, far better than a few moments before and it wasn't natural at all. He was in a foul mood and knew how to get out of it, though he knew Elliot would not have approved- or he assumed. It was hard to tell what methods Elliot did and did not approve of given his marks. Saoire had sent a box of candies to Balthazar and he thought one to Elisabeth with the strangest but most delightful effect. As soon as it was in his mouth and his salivary glands were working at it, he began to feel better- lighter.

It was another reason he'd wanted to come back to the house. The effect radiated to those around him supposedly a small number of people only, but Balthazar was only thinking about banishing his own negative thoughts. There were times he considered eating a candy before going to therapy but he thought of that like... getting drunk to be in a better mood and always decided against it. However in this case it would enable him to do what he had wanted to do. Balthazar came over to the table where it seemed like Elisabeth was beginning to write a letter and sat down. "I'm sorry about the beach. I was frustrated. I was mean."
word count: 294

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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