and Kratos (NPC)
Mentioning Princess Helena
, Lord Pietro
, Merchant Raho (NPC), Lady Nephthys (NPC)
Lady Manea (NPC), Lord Ulixes (NPC), Helios (NPC), Iris (NPC)
Year 766 of the New Age, Spring
Pitch black, pale blue,
It was a stained glass
Variation of the truth
And I felt empty handed.
You let me set sail
With cheap wood.
So I patched up
Every leak that I could,
'Til the blame grew too heavy.
Stitch by stitch I tear apart.
If brokenness is a form of art,
I must be a poster child prodigy.
Thread by thread I come apart.
If brokenness is a work of art,
Surely this must be my masterpiece.
I'm only honest when it rains.
If I time it right, the thunder breaks
When I open my mouth.
I want to tell you but I don't know how.
I'm only honest when it rains,
An open book with a torn out page,
And my ink's run out.
I want to love you but I don't know how.
I don't know how,
No I don't know how.
I don't know how.
I want to love you but I don't know how.
I want to love you...
+3 magic - lit - 2000+ words
Red. Black. Blue.
Black for the aggressive drunk madman who came home and did as his wife bid, beating the life out of his beloved son. Black for the bruises and the nights spent sleepless for the pain. Black for the inky nothingness that became the only peace found in the raging monsoon of life. Black for the bone-chilling darkness that lived in every shadow and flourished in every unforgotten memory. Black for the taste of evil and the chill it left behind as the son learned to adapt. Black for the shadows the son hid within.
Blue for the angry eyes of a goddess, the fallen angel with clipped wings sent down among the mortals to prove to them their place. Blue for the eyes of a goddess that hid away a vile witch. Blue for the skies that watched as the son's parents thrived in madness. Blue for the dreams ridden with fear, the only color remaining from them in the waking hour. Blue for the rain that fell dry upon the perfect glade. Blue for the rivers that washed clean the evidence of a life of agony from the son's coat. Blue for the tears the son never cried.
Red for the blood that was spilled at the hooves of the mad. Red for the lifeblood reclaimed by the earth from the son's only friend. Red for the bloodshot eyes and the words whispered at the last moments of death. Red for the sunrise that rose over the vigil the son sat. Red for the rage of the madman and his mad wife all aimed at the son. Red for the roses that publicly proclaimed another murder. Red for the color the blue river turned.
The three colors Phobos had associated with his childhood all his life. Slowly, however, he was beginning to associate them with better meanings. Black like the pelt of his fair and justly boss, Pietro, who had done Phobos no harm and given him a life worth while. Blue for the eyes of Helena, the true embodiment of what a goddess should have been. Red for the roses Helena wore daily, crowning her beauty elegantly and giving her sophisticated grace a colorful flair. Good things that floated lightly on the sea of horrible memories. He would forever be grateful for them, indebted eternally to the to heaven sent graces that showed him that life wasn't just survival and killing others before they killed you. Sometimes it was enjoying the survival. Helping others
The winter had come and gone with Phobos trying to spend every minute possible distracting himself. Between his lady and his lord there was simply never a shortage of things to do. Reasons for Phobos to ignore the nagging thoughts in the back of his mind. Reasons to keep procrastinating coming to a decision on whether or not to be his father. Whether or not to be his mother and end the life of an innocent. The reasons were never simplistic. He had chores. He had errands. Helena needed special herbs from the market- Phobos would volunteer to fetch them. Pietro needed a gift from the market as a gift to the lord who's heir had just been born- Phobos would fetch it without question and bring the most magnificent gift he could find.
There was always something. Especially the closer it came to Helena's due date. Yet as Spring arrived and Helena drew closer to giving birth, Phobos was finally awarded a day off. Well, more Helena looked at his tired and mostly sleepless eyes and demanded him take a day off. Phobos would never say 'no' to his Lady so thus after the morning chores he had been left to his own thoughts. His mother's words had begun to thunder around in his mind. A second son of Ulixes, another child of the line of Excalibur. Another stag to further the line of madness. That's all Kratos was.
He was a threat to Glenmore. A threat to the peace. A threat to Phobos and a threat to Pietro's family. He would go mad eventually, just like their father had. He would go mad and he would murder. He would commit the same sins. It was in their blood to commit the same sins. The sin of Phobos had been beaten out of him. Maybe. Perhaps not. Given he was plotting how to kill his own brother it seems like he had been wrong all these years. He was just as mad as his parents. Murder was all they did. It was the family trade. Murder, homicide, and political suicide on the rack of karma weathered away to vicious points by the rain of blood.
Yet did he truly
wish to become what his mother and father had spent his entire life beating into him? Did he really wish to conform to what he had fought so long to fight against? Was it really all worth
This inward debate, the war of to kill or live with the fear of being killed, thus was how he had ended up standing at the entrance of a little known tiny conquered 'glade' of sorts on the very edge of the Glenwood. It wasn't worth the title of a glade since it was no where near as large and expansive as the one he had just come from.
No. It was a tiny meadow that had been conquered, other fawns fought off and the territory hard won. Too small a plot of land to bother the royals, just far enough on the outskirts of the Glenwood to win some peace from pesky commoners vying for a larger home. Around the edges was a thick hedge of angry looking thorns leaving only one entrance. In it were two nestled dens. More burrows to be precise. The grass was green but no where near as up kept as Lord Pietro's. Various plants were tended to among the meadow. It was a dejected looking meadow but it was enough of something to call home. Enough for a merchant.
" Phobos called, stepping forward into the glade and not minding the familiar tug of thorns against his pelt. It was a relaxing sensation if he were honest. A sensation he was used to given his own den had an entrance of thorns to ward off nosy servants. Phobos glanced around, taking in the very petite size of the glade. Honestly, a pair of Oakferns would live comfortably in the glade. A pair of Glenmorians? Phobos was at a loss at how two bachelor stags and a hind could all share the same den space without going mad or stepping on each other's tails all the time.
A pale golden head popped out of the den to the north, curious green eyes meeting brown. "Why hello!
" The fawn called, stepping forward and out of the den. Their gold champagne coat was sooty both from natural coloration and dirt. Gentle white fawnspots dappled their back and backside, white stockings upon their legs. A cascade of white hair fell like a waterfall, making them look more hindish than before. However the bulky build of a stag presented the fawn before him as a male. "Pleasure to meet you- I'm Merchant Raho. What brings you 'round to these parts?
Phobos stared at him for a split moment, unsure of whether or not to continue. Uncertainty was not something familiar to Phobos. He had always been promised the same things for every reaction and action. Yet this- he had no clue. No promises of certain reactions. No promises of the sun rising again after the sun set. Nothing. He was carving his own fate. Sealing it with a kiss of poison or passion. "Hello. I am Butler Phobos. I am looking for Merchant Kratos? Is he here?
" Phobos finally stated, trying to do his best to not give away his uncertainty.
The stag, Raho, just grinned his direction and nodded. "'Course he is! This is his meadow after all!
" Raho laughed and turned towards the other den, bellowing his next words, "Krat! You and the misses have a guest!
" The misses
? Phobos questioned internally. This situation was delving very quickly into dangerous territory. A grieving widow was just as dangerous as Kratos was.
" A light and airy, bell like voice rang from the den. Some shuffling was heard and a moment later two fawns stepped out. One was a near pitch-black doe who was smaller than the stag. She had gentle features and delicacy radiated from her. Her black hair was wrapped up elegantly in a large bun and held together with different smooth carved wooden sticks, flowers draped over them and connecting them. Her soft and golden eyes glowed against her face, competing with her glowing smile.
The stag beside her was tall but thin. He was as pale as a princess- a bright shining cremello with spots along his back. Gently curving white markings danced along his face, legs, belly, and tail. A faint smirk tilted his lips and joy twinkled in his bright blue eyes. He stood proud and tall. White hair was cut to a medium length and braided tight with different trinkets. A faint few scars danced along his pelt but were mostly unnoticeable. "Hello! I'm Kratos. This is my wife, Lady Nephthys. What brings you to our humble abode Mister?
" The voice was different than the one whom had answered Raho. It was deeper, much more masculine. It lilted over the nerves like a warm patch of sun on a cool winter day. It was inviting and respectful, soothing any agitated nerves like fermented fruit might.
Suddenly a small gangly limbed little fawn came tumbling out after them, bleating noisily and demanding attention with bright innocent green eyes. The small creature was only at best a few days old. She was lithe in build, even for a newborn, and was made up of graceful edges that bore no hint of one day becoming sharp. She was a softly hued amber champagne with lighter fawnspots covering her back. Phobos feared for her, momentarily. He waited in silence for them to lash out at her, making a clipped command for her to get back to her dam's side. Apologizing gently for their errant child's behavior. He waited for the cold eyes and the undertones of a lack of concern for the child.
Yet they did not come. Kratos, Nephthys, and Raho's eyes all turned to the child and softened. Their eyes shined brightly with a warm emotion Phobos had never quite understood enough to name. Their smiles grew wider, brighter, and their postures softened. Everything softened around the child. The look in Nephthys' eyes reminded him of how Helena would look upon her own belly or upon her adopted children of Pietro. The pride in Kratos and Raho's eyes reminded him of Pietro whenever he would look upon his beloved wife, expecting their first child, and his motherless children who she raised as her own. The genuine pride, the affection that went deeper than blood, the will to protect, the happiness- all those warm emotions melding into a nameless mass.
Phobos nodded softly to himself, understanding what he had to do. "Hello Kratos. I am Phobos, a butler of Lord Pietro. This will not come as pleasurable information to hear, but I am the son of Ulixes. I am your half brother. I did not find this information out until this past winter.
" He said, his voice soft. It lacked all the purr, all the guarded restrictions that he always kept up. Immediately it was clear to see when the words sank in. The joy left them, retreating to the back of their minds. Nephthys called the fawn to her and ushered her back inside the den, leaving with a kiss on her beloved's cheek. Raho bowed out of the conversation, giving a sorrowful look for the two of them.
Kratos had took a tense stance, seeming to be trying to swallow bitter feelings. Phobos waited in what amounted to the nearest thing to timidness as he had ever shown. "My brother.
" Kratos hummed, "Please, sit with me. There is much to talk about that I doubt father ever told you about.
" Kratos invited, voice still soft despite the bitterness his posture possessed. Phobos had to swallow a bit and urge his own feet to move. He followed his brother to the far side of the glade beneath the shade of a low-hanging oak tree. They laid together, airing out the familial history. The morning passed into night, Raho and Nephthys eventually making their way out to graze and entertain the young child Iris.
When Phobos left that evening it was on weary hooves, his mind thundering. Nothing was clear for him anymore. Nothing was clear. He no longer knew up from down. Everything he had ever known had been twisted around until it made frightening sense backwards, far more sense than it had ever made going the other direction. Phobos stored all the information he had learned from Kratos- his brother
- away and tried to deal with his own shakiness. He stumbled into the night with a promise to come back given to Nephthys.
He had every intention of keeping that promise. He wanted to see how his brother lived. He wanted to be there when his brother died, when he cried, and when he laughed. He wanted this family and he wanted to see Iris grow into a beautiful hind. He wanted this just as much as he wanted to keep his job. Kratos and his family became near instantly just as important to him as Pietro and the glade family was. He stumbled his way through Glenmore along the trails he found an empty meadow. Once within it he let himself throw his magic into the ground.
He scowered the earth with the buzzing feeling of his magic. He fed from the unchanging stability. He drank from the wells of tranquility and sleeping peace that the earth provided. His magic lashed out until it flourished around him in a beautiful bloom. The grass greened and rose higher, tickling the underside of his belly. Poppies filled the meadow with a sea of red. The trees around him began to bloom brightly, livening up even brighter despite how early it was into spring. Small waves in the earth began to form beneath the grass and the poppies. Just enough to create something to stumble on.
Phobos let his magic explode, finding peace in the controlled chaos. It was the only thing that was familiar to him. No- that wasn't the only thing familiar. Not anymore. As Phobos calmed down he began to realize this was the very meadow where Helios was murdered. Phobos bowed his head and greedily took in air as his body heaved from the strain of so much magic having been released all at once. "I won't let her, Helios.
" Phobos muttered, vowing to the ghost of the stag who had been his only friend, "I won't let her win. She will pay. She will pay dearly.
"She will pay.