Ethelynda sighed as she looked over the city, a sigh that was both melancholy and content. "They've come so far, Rithu. I wish there was some way you could see it." The Immortal of Protection was quiet as she awaited the dawn, her red eyes having the distant look of one who was entirely lost in her own memories. So much had happened since she first crawled, injured and afraid, into the little fishing village that had once stood here. It had been ignored by all the powerful factions of the war, since no one saw any value in the little island it was stationed on, not with the violent, ship eating fish in the seas around it and the lack of any real strategic value to the largely land focused warring factions. But she had found something there, in that tiny village, that was worth more than all the power or treasure in the world. She had found compassion, a willingness of those gentle people, who had been so afraid of the war finding them, to help one of the Immortals they so feared, simply because they had been unwilling to simply leave her to die.
It had been that one act of compassion, that willingness to save a life even at risk to their own, a risk that had proven all to real when Faldrun's Champions had come looking for her, that had rekindled the hope that had lain dead in the Noble Serpent since the fall of her original followers. She had, in an act of desperation as her rescuers faced death, changed them into the Ithecal, scarring her body as her creator had scarred himself to create her, and had become their leader and guide. In time, she had found a love she would not have thought possible and though Rithu had died long ago, his legacy had lived in in the city they had planned together and, more importantly, in her son, Ethelm.
Ethelynda looked over at her son, noting for what had to be the millionth time how much he looked like his father. Indeed, if one had ever seen Ethelm and Rithu side by side, the only notable difference would have been their height and haircut. The birth defect in Ethelm's tail had made him somewhat short for an Ithecal, but his lifetimes of work in the forges had made him a powerfully built man, and he had worked that skill for the greatest warriors Yithiral had produced. Ethelynda's own arms and armor had been forged by her son, a testament to the skill of the Mortalborn smith.
Looking back over the city, Ethelynda smiled as she saw the first light of dawn stain the sky. "Come, Ethelm. It's time for us to begin." she said, slithering out from the battlement she had been watching the sky from. Ethelm nodded and followed her, as quiet as he always had been. While he didn't speak much, Ethelynda found her son's quiet presence comforting, as solid and dependable, if as stubborn, as the steel he worked with, much as his father had been.
Smiling at a memory of the one of the times the two had driven her to distraction when their stubborn wills had clashed, Ethelynda was more than happy to see the Aethesti of the city and the five Euralcal that assisted him. "Khazera. You're looking well, old friend." she said, warmly taking the Aethesti's hand. Khazera smiled at her. "I'm beginning to feel my years, milady. But it is good to see you again." the old Ithecal grinned slightly at her. Etheynda shook her head at him with an answering grin of her own.
"You've many years left to go before you get to feel old, Khazera." Aleon grinned at his superior, then side-slithered to avoid a smack from Thrami, who was as serious as ever. "Aleon, that's no way to behave in front of our Lady." he said sternly. Rishilda, as short tempered as she was, surprisingly grinned openly at her coworkers. "Relax, Thrami. You take things too seriously." Maltheras grinned along with Rishilda, but didn't speak. Aergent shook her head and smiled. "We shouldn't be arguing, my friends. After all, it's a day of celebration."
Ethelynda raised her hands and the six people before her quieted. "My friends, Aergent is right. This isn't the time for us to argue." she said, smiling at the leaders of the city. Per the formality due to the day, they were in their formal armor, with the fur trimmed capes and pendants due their rank. Ethelm was, as usual, wearing only a long linen tunic and leather smithing apron. Ethelynda was wearing the armor Ethelm had made for her, the heavy gold-coloured plate mail burnished to a mirror shine and the golden cloak, trimmed with golden fur, hanging over her tail. Only the initial procession was conducted in formal armor, after that, the Immortal and the city officials would change into more comfortable clothing. However, the was still some time before the procession began, as the sun had not yet risen above the headquarters.