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 Post subject: Teatime with God (Musalis & Ochre)
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 7:47 pm 
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It was a nice little house, just at the edge of the city. It belonged to Mrs Summerday. Just like her name indicated, she had a sunny nature. So sunny, in fact, that she just had to tell you her entire lifestory once you entered the cozy little teashop that was located on the ground floor of the house. After the first step you would know about her father; what a good man he had been, always working so hard to feed his family, you see, but still finding time to spend with his kids on the weekends and the Gods bless his for it for it was always so fun to be with him... After the second step, you had been informed about her mother; such a kind woman, and the best cook in the world, you just should have tasted her pickled oranges, nothing better in the world, though there was that little 'desserté' from Glanath which is just divine, but they don't get that anymore because the wagondrivers are on strike, you see, which is unfortunate because...

By the time you reached the little terrace, you had heard Mrs Summerdays entire lifestory. And that of her parents, husband, children, neighbors, aunts, uncles, two dogs, three cats, goldfish, mirror, teashop, house and the little brown bird that came here twice a year - once when he went north for the summer and once when he went south for the winter. And Mrs Summersay was so good at telling you something that you already listened. It was an experience unlike any other. When you were left standing on the terrace, with the menu on your hand, and with your own introduction ("Hello.") still on your lips, you started to realize what had just happened. And your mind tried fiercely to tell you that it wasn't even possibly to get told that amount information, and especially not is such a short short span of time.

It was in this situation that Musalis found herself. It took a while for her to come back to reality, to remember what had happened to her. Her own life had for a few moments been drowned in the lives told by Mrs Summerday. But there had been something important in her life, hadn't there? Something about a library... as she started to forget parts of the things Mrs. Summerday had told her, her own memories flooded back in. She had been attacked in the library, but managed to win the fight, and get the book.

Ah, yes, the book. It was a sore spot in her conscience. Though she really needed it in order to confirm if there was a conspiracy against Ochre, Musalis didn't like stealing. But she hadn't really had a choice - the library was clearly not the safest spot in DI. She had tried to appease her conscience by writing a note explaining why she had taken the book, leaving some money for loaning it, and having the clear intention of returning the book once she was done with it. And still some part of her said that it was wrong to take the book without asking.

But the book was important, so she had taken it anyway. And then gone to the one place where a skeleton wouldn't be expected - someplace that had the sole purpose of serving food or beverage. It was the one place skeletons just didn't go, because they didn't need to. She had come across a few inns (two, to be precise - "Ye new ol' inne" and "To the three bears and one chicken"), but inns weren't good enough. Though technically skeletons didn't sleep, some time to rest was always appreciated. So it wasn't too uncommon to see a skeleton in an inn. And after that, she had come to Mrs. Summerdays Little Teahouse.

That brought her up to date with her memories. And she had already nearly forgotten everything she had been told by Mrs. Summerday. There had been something about her brother who had worked for some dwarfs... and something about flying pigs... and it was somehow tied to the second assassination of a drow queen (the first had failed).

Musalis looked around. Again, her mind hadn't had capacity for that while being led here by Mrs Summerday, so she first now consciously saw the little teashop. The walls, floor and ceiling was covered in smooth light dark wood. The walls were covered with lots of little pictures. Musalis saw a smiling cup of tea, a cow in a dress with a bottle of milk and a little sugar-cube which had been painted to look as cute as possible. The tables were a little darker wood-sort, and cut with artistic finesse to a degree almost to small for the eye to see. As far as Musalis could distinguish, it had been carved into the shape of flowers, covering the four slender legs of the table. Actually, the legs seemed to be too slender, Musalis wasn't sure how the managed to bear the weight of the table. The chairs seemed similarly brittle.

As for patrons, the tea-shop was surprisingly empty. There was a younger couple sitting in one corner, staring in each others eyes, lost for the rest of the world; and an older man sitting in another corner, and staring holes in the air. Everyone seemed to be staring, and they hadn't noticed Musalis. The little terrace was empty, with only two small tables, while the main room had five. Musalis wanted some privacy, so she took one of the tables on the terrace.

Then she studied the menu. It became quickly clear that it had been written by someone who was very interested in the finer parts of society, but didn't really have a grasp on how it worked. But tried to act as if she was a fine lady anyway.

(1) Nothern herbblend (Tea)

(2) Le thè avec le herbes (Tea)

(3) Southern 'čajs mlijekom' (Tea, with milk)

(4) L'eau bouillante à base de plantes (Tea)

...


Musalis skipped to the end of the menu, where she found one entry for coffee, and one for hot chocolate, right after "(264) Miryenda a'lourn (Tea, with a hint of citrus)". Chocolate... well, why not. She couldn't drink it in any case, but it would be rude not to order anything. And chocolate somehow gave a feeling of... calmness. Just having a steaming hot cup of chocolate in your hands was enough to relax.

Mrs. Summerday came to take her order. Musalis ordered the chocolate once Mrs. Summerday made a pause in telling her that the entire incident with Gauge and Drakol fighting that everyone had been talking about some time ago had been a farce, nothing but rumors spread to frighten young people from going out into the world, and what would become of the people when noone dared to venture out, weren't it those journeys that shaped young man and made then...

Once Mrs Summerday had left, Musalis sat down in her chair, careful not to break it. Maybe that had been a breach of manners. Were you supposed to sit down before you ordered? It was so hard to remember table manners when she never ate. She'd have to find another book on it in the next library she came across. Or when she brought the book about temples to Ochre back to the library.

She still hadn't looked in the book.

It was just a frightening prospect. Musalis suspected that someone was killing off musicians, especially Ochres followers, and also burned his temples. The book was the "Record of temples of Ochre.". All major Gods had lists of their temples printed at least once a year. The edition she had was only a few weeks old, so if anything was wrong... she would find the proof in this book.

Mrs. Summerday came to bring her her chocolate. Thankfully, she was talking to one of the customers inside, and not to Musalis. Musalis waited until she once again was alone, and the took a solid grip on the cup with her left hand. There wouldn't be a better time to open the book than now. The sun was shining, the sky was a clear blue dotted with only a few white clouds. She had a great view of the countryside, was alone and had a cup of chocolate a a mental anchor. If she ever could hope to stay remotely calm while opening the book, it was now. Collecting all her courage, Musalis opened the book.

"...
First Temple of Vallandar - Destroyed
Ochres Temple of the Upper Guardian City - Destroyed
Main Temple of Feyluse - Destroyed
Temple to Ochre, Reign - Destroyed
..."


Musalis vision got cloudy, as if tears had filled her eyes. They were made out of sadness. The word 'Destroyed' seemed to jump at her from the page, over and over again, until it filled her entire mind.

"... Destroyed ...
... Destroyed ...
... Destroyed, Destroyed, Destroyed ..."

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 Post subject: Re: Teatime with God (Musalis & Ochre)
PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:11 am 
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Quaint. Truly, it was. Cozy and warm on its perch outside the city, the Little Teahouse could've been one of those picturesque covers on your favorite coffee table book - the one you look at but never read. A light, calm breeze brushed over the the god's bronze skin, ruffling his black hair across his forehead while he looked over at Musalis. He chuckled at Musalis' inconspicuous choice of venue. He was mostly surprised that none of the other patrons found visitation by an undead girl in a robe to be disturbing. But then again, he supposed they expected worse from a world such as DI.

Mrs. Summerday walked towards him at a brisk, bouncy pace. Ochre smiled kindly at the woman, unfolding his arms to reach out for the menu she handed him. The kindly hostess was about to launch into her tirade when Ochre sent a warm smile, said "Thank-you" in his deep voice, and idly flipped open the menu. The woman seemed startled by the sudden show of confidence: most people were caught unaware by her lengthy speech, so she wasn't used to kinks in the routine. She blushed slightly before recovering her composure.

"I'm meeting someone here," he said in response to one of the many things Mrs. Summerday might have asked him. He nodded in direction of terrace. "And I think I've found her over there. Would it be too much trouble for a cub of Black Spice Chai Tea? I would certainly be thankful for it. With milk?".

Now more prepared to meet her guest's disposition, Mrs. Summerday beamed and said it wasn't any trouble. She didn't seem at all phased by the god's large presence within the small house, nor by his baritone voice. So long as she could keep talking or bouncing happily throughout the small cafe, Mrs. Summerday was happy. Then again, the hostess had probably seen enough variety of life in her profession. Teahouses might not have been the center for brutal fist fights and nasty throw downs, but plenty of interesting characters liked staying out of the spotlight: many a "cutthroat killer" liked to be alone, just to get away from the incessant warrants and search parties. The woman had probably adopted a policy of "don't ask, don't tell", and was all the better for it. Ochre wondered if she would have acted the same had she known who he was.

Ochre handed the woman back her frilly, flower-decorated menu and sauntered through the cafe. Each footfall echoed through the room, but not in a disturbing fashion. Though his gait didn't betray it, the sound of his steps seemed to fall into a rhythmic beat. The weight of his worldly form jostled the cutlery and tea sets on the tables near him, adding a delicate, harmonious ringing to his unseen entourage of music. Patrons smiled despite themselves as they met his gaze, which brought a smile to Ochre's lips as well. If only his mood truly fit with that of the teahouse.

Ochre had more important, dire business here - business which had no business confining itself to a place such as this. But, there was certainly no reason to meet in some kind of underground bunker: Musalis felt more comfortable and safe here, so that settled the matter for Ochre. The terrace where the undead priestess sat fell under the full gaze of the spring time sun, but it wasn't so bright so as to make seeing difficult. Why stay indoors on such a wonderful day? Ochre smiled at the thought, placing a gentle hand on Musalis' shoulder as he approached.

"Ms. Musalis, I presume?"

With slow, deliberate grace, Ochre settled into the chair opposite Musalis, unsure as to whether its slender frame would support his weight. He cocked an eyebrow and glanced down when the chair stayed silent: for the moment, it seemed up to the task. Presently settled, the god placed his meaty forearms on the table and interlocked his fingers in front of him, leaning forward slightly. His grey eyes skimmed across the book sitting on the table before meeting Musalis' gaze: she didn't need eyes for Ochre to see the pain in those dark voids. Communicating his own emotions wouldn't do justice to them. While Musalis' was grieved at the impiety of such destruction, Ochre actually felt it.

"Come, child. Let's talk for a bit. Don't fret for now, Musalis. We're here together, and we'll talk this out until we've got it right. Tell me: what have you learned of late?"

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 Post subject: Re: Teatime with God (Musalis & Ochre)
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2011 7:32 pm 
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A melody cut through the haze of sadness that had clouded Musalis' mind. She clung to it as if it was a lifebuoy, a safe point in the madness of the world. Slowly, she started to calm down enough to think again, guided by the melody back to reality. She was still sitting at her table, in the same position, and judging from the suns position, not much time had passed. Good. There was a time for sadness, and it probably wasn't now. Somebody needed to do something. But it was hard to hold the emotions in check. Controlling her emotions was one thing Musalis wasn't really good at. But there was the melody to help her.

Which, all things considered, was a little odd. Why would there be a melody such as that here? The skeleton listened closer, trying to discern where it was coming from, without much success. The sounds seemed to come from all around her, as if the world itself was softly singing, so softly that she felt the melody more than she heard it. She had felt it before, it was... it was the presence of Ochre.

The realization shocked Musalis. What was her God doing here, now? She had actually never met Him out of battle, so she wasn't why else He would come to see her. Well, maybe Ochre was just on business nearby, and it hadn't actually anything to do with her, and...

"Ms. Musalis, I presume?"

... or not. Musalis turned to where the voice had come from, and froze. For the moment, she was content with simply looking at Ochre and feeling the music that was His very being. Then Musalis realized that she was probably required to answer. Slightly flustered, she stuttered:

"I... yes... am... yes, I am. And you are Ochre."

There was no need to ask, as she knew already. On the other hand, he had probably known too, after all, He was a God. Had it been rude to simply state His identity? Musalis wasn't sure, she had never really learned the codex of talking to people you knew a lot about but almost never actually met. Had she made a mess of things? Musalis sighed in despair. Messing up her relationship to her God by stupid blunders in etiquette was all she needed.

"Come, child. Let's talk for a bit. Don't fret for now, Musalis. We're here together, and we'll talk this out until we've got it right. Tell me: what have you learned of late?"

His voice and words calmed her. Musalis nodded. Ochre was still on her side. With him there, what could possibly go wrong?

"I had not seen any other priests to Ochre on my journey, or even any musicians.", she started to tell, "And all the temples to you were destroyed. I didn't think so much of it at first, though I should have. I'm so sorry I didn't figure things out sooner... I thought that someone must have deliberately set out to destroy Your followers. And then I went to the library to get the records..., Musalis tapped the open book in front of her, "And I don't know if I am right that someone is responsible, but all the temples seem to be destroyed, as far as I have come in the records. It could be just random attacks by bandits or something like that, but why would they attack all the temples at about the same time?"

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