He is a burly tae'dae demigod and towers over his surroundings. Standing upwards of nine feet tall, his huge form is exceptionally stocky. Broad shoulders give way to powerful arms, immense strength evident in his massive bulk. His obvious strength hides underneath his robes, the left side of his body completely veiled. His left paw is drawn within its sleeve, as if frightened by the very air. The right of his body is covered in frozen fur, a dusting of hoarfrost. The stark white is offset by a harsh crimson, marring its glistening surface with wisped strokes of colour. His face hides beneath his hood, the left side cloaked in complete shadow. What can be seen of its right side shares the hoarfrost fur. Crimson pattering is solid where his eye meets his snout, growing and breaking apart in a wide sweep across his temple and cheek. An eye of pale lavender stares out from among the red, twinkling with a well-concealed intent.
He is a burly tae'dae wandering demigod and possessed of an otherworldly nature, the wispy white fur covering his body trailing off into thin curls of mist that linger in the air after his every movement. Shorter and leaner than most of his race, but still distinctly stout, his well-muscled form crawls with black, inky spirals reminiscent of clouds. His eyes, pupiless marbles of swirling grey mist, tell of an ancient experience that does not match the perpetual youth of the ursine's face. Despite his distinctly immortal appearance, the tae'dae hardly seems threatening, a calm if inquisitve air hovering about his body like the fog that trails it.
Under a pristine, ever-blooming cherry tree.
The gardens to the south break into a beautiful central area. This place has been cut off from the rest of the gardens by a thick, perfectly managed ring of white rose bushes. Growing in the center of this circle is a glorious cherry tree, forever in bloom. Its pink petals twirl and fall away, cascading like tiny dancers as they pirouette across the sky. The entire garden has been filled with these fallen blossoms, save an exact circle under the tree itself. Dangling daintily from a silver rod, a fragile, glass-wrought birdcage encrusted with jewels brightens up its surroundings with its company of hummingbirds. Kio d'Illici of the Murder is here, sprawled on the ground.
You see a single exit leading south.
Hugging close, Thul asks Kio, "How are you, love?"
Loosely, Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "I am tired. Very tired."
Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "My eyes will not stay widened, and I fear they may never."
Kio musters a disjointedly shrug in an attempt to hold Thul.
Smiling ruefully, Thul says to Kio, "I, uh. Feared that might be."
Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "Love, I have a favor to ask of you."
Kio smiles softly.
Thul wraps his arms tight around Kio, holding him tight.
Kio draws a slow, deliberate breath.
Laying his chin in Kio's shoulder, teeth clenched tight as he holds in a sob, Thul says to Kio, "A favor for a favor, love. But what do you wish of me?"
Softly, Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "When you find Ackleberry, will you plant me there?"
Thul just loses it. His fog-wreathed body wracks against Kio as he lets out a tremendous sob, tears flowing onto his shoulder.
Kio smiles softly, dreamily resting his head against Thul's shaking frame.
Softly, Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "This is what the Wyrd does, love. It destroys and consumes."
In a pained, transparently terrible effort to sound calm, Thul says, "I will do this for you, my dear. Just... hush, about the forest for now."
Kio offers a weak nod, unable to lift from against Thul.
Thul sniffles a moment, but manages to calm himself, looking Kio in the eye.
In a calm tone, though tears trail down his face, Thul says to Kio, "But I would have you do one thing for me first. Stay long enough to listen to a story?"
Softly, Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "Of course, my foggy one. My library has longed for a new tale."
Kio rests against Thul, his eyes grayed and staring into the distance.
Thul settles against Kio's side beneath the the cherry tree, leaning his head against Kio's as he stares into the distance.
Thul intones, "I believe that at the end of this Age, after all the endless battles and deaths, after all the disasters and calamities that have ruined lives and born heroes, there shall come a judgment."
Thul intones, "The Fates shall gather all their threads, the individuals and events that have made this Age, and they will pick the choiciest. The grandest battles, the gravest disasters, the deepest loves and the greatest of heroes."
Kio breathes softly against Thul, his weight barely heaving.
Giving Kio a little squeeze, Thul says, "And from these pieces, they shall weave together the true history of the Age of Ascension."
Thul intones, "As they did with the Taint Wars, and the Vernal Wars, and the Elder Wars, and battles before, and as they shall with battles after."
Thul pauses, looking to Kio, and touching his nose to Kio's cheek.
Thul asks Kio, "How do you wish history to remember you, love?"
Without hesitation, Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "As your heart, my bear. As your love."
Thul smiles widely at Kio, though tears well up once again in his eyes, and he pulls close against Kio.
Chuckling softly, Thul says to Kio, "You're so sweet. I'll do what I can. though... heheh."
Musing off to the side, Thul says, "There's the minor issue of your years as an object of terror to the Serenwilde. I'll have to write around that."
Softly, Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "Every good love story has a murderer. Or something."
Kio's roots begin to break free from the flesh of his legs, slowly twining themselves around those of the cherry tree.
Thul turns, and just caresses Kio's cheek gently, tears streaming down his face to the grass below. He manages a kind smile.
Kio's weight against Thul seems a little lighter as the fur along his ribs breaks to reveal silver vines. Their shimmering incandescence takes hold around the trunk of the tree, slowly crawling upwards into its boughs.
Thul sighs, breath quivering as he looks over Kio's changing body. He swallows and smiles again though, looking into Kio's eyes.
Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "You are my heart, love."
Laying his head against Kio's shoulder, Thul says to Kio, "You sleep well, my heart. Thank you."
Voice quavering, Thul says to Kio, "You are the best thing the forest gave to me."
Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "You are the only thing the forest gave me, for my eyes could never see anything else."
Kio d'Illici of the Murder says, "I will dream of you, husbear."
Kio's breathing comes to a halt as the last glimmer of life fades out of his eyes. Unable to contain their bloom, a slow cascade of freshly grown blossoms fall about you.
Kio grows still and his lips begin to move silently.
Thul says, "...I will be with you soon."
Kio is enveloped in translucent fire for a moment and is gone, his soul safe until he returns to Lusternia.