You raise your hand in greeting to Ruin and say "Hello!"
Your mouth turns up as your face breaks into a smile.
You say, "Got you some snacks."
You give a crumbly apple tart to Ruin.
Ruin shoves a crumbly apple tart into her mouth in one fell swoop, hastily wiping the mess from her chin with the back of a hand.
You giggle happily.
Ruin waves idly, then perks up. "Well, he-mpgh."
You give a powdered jelly donut to Ruin.
Ruin shoves a powdered jelly donut into her mouth in one fell swoop, hastily wiping the mess from her chin with the back of a hand.
Licking sugar from her fingers, Ruin says, "I do love a good bribe."
An impish grin creeps over Ruin's face as her eyes light up with mischief.
You say, "I have no reason to bribe you, but I did want to check in on you. Are you alright?"
"Oh, you know," Ruin shrugs, rubbing at the back of her neck. "I'm getting on. Thinking."
Tirah nods slowly. "You seemed very upset about you know who. Will you be fine without spilling his guts?" She offers a smile and another pastry. "Thinking about anything specific?"
You give a slice of wild blueberry pie to Ruin.
Ruin shoves a slice of wild blueberry pie into her mouth in one fell swoop, hastily wiping the mess from her chin with the back of a hand.
With the pie taken care of, Ruin turns and looks up at the waterfall, stepping so that she places one foot either side of one of the many offshoots at its base. "It's not him, really. Or I guess it is. Sort of. It - huh. Have you ever had that feeling where you realise you might've been wrong about something for bloody ages?"
Tirah raises her eyebrows. "Have you met me? I am that feeling personalized. The good thing about it is that it is not always right, you know? She pauses. "Would you like to go into detail?"
"I've got kinda a thing going on here, you know? A good thing. I like it." Ruin scuffs the toe of
her boot into the water, flicking it up. "I get to be me in a way that I didn't ... before. I was me
then, too, but it - I was expected to be a certain thing. Only, I think I'm expected to be things
here now, too."
Frowning, Ruin says, "And I don't know how I feel about that, really."
Tirah nods, slightly furrowing her brow as she thinks. "I think, expecting no expectations will never go well." She pauses for a moment. "What you can do is find a place where the expectations line up with the reality of yourself. I did that when I moved from Gaudiguch to Hallifax, in a way, it was not a perfect fit of course, it never is. But it is close enough for comfort and happiness." She pauses again, offering a soft smile. "Do you think your current position in life feels like that?"
Ruin bits down on her bottom lip and stares at the ground. "Yeah. Which is weird. And - and it makes me want to do things that don't make sense."
You say, "That can be alright sometimes, in moderation, anything in particular?"
For a long time, Ruin doesn't reply. She kicks at the water again, picks up a rock and skims it into one of the wider channels behind you, and reaches out to run her hand through the almost misty spray of the waterfall. Then she walks away from it, stepping out of the all-encompassing din of the crashing water.-
And hesitantly,, Ruin says, "I want to pick my Third Name."
Tirah nods slowly. "That does not seem particularly illogical? Setting your goals for growth is one of the better things you can do, I think." She smirks lightly. "Or are you worried you are starting to enjoy being a part of all this and being one of Her's?"
Ruin looks down again, fingers tangling in the scrappy scarf around her throat. "Well, shit," she grumbles, somehow appearing both surprised and resigned. "Yeah. Bloody - stupid clever people. Why am I surrounded by clever people? Ugh."
Ruin inhales, and when she begins speaking again it is as if a dam has burst. "Look, I always figured that She was playing me, you know? That I didn't really mean anything, and it was just some lark, haha, look, I saved this random kid."
"But it wasn't just that, was it?" Ruin laces her fingers together behind her head and sighs. "She's still an arse, but - but we're all here and - and it's stupid, but somehow when She tells people off I just. That's when I see it, you know? If She didn't give a shit then She wouldn't be here. That's it. She's here so - so it's not a joke."
Ruin exhales slowly, allowing a long fluid breath to creep from her lungs.
Ruin says, "...sorry."
Tirah flashes a smile. "I am fairly sure I told you in one of our first meetings that I can't imagine that being the case. And it did not take long for me to feel very secure in that opinion. She cares about you. And, as much as you hate admitting it, you probably care about Her too, at least a little." Another, softer smile comes across her face. "You have absolutely nothing to be sorry about."
With a flourish, Ruin draws Salvation from the scabbard strapped to her back.
You have emoted: Tirah raises her eyebrows.
Ruin sits down in a splash, seemingly uncaring about the state of her clothing or armour, and
settles the sword in her lap.
Tirah settles down close to Ruin, cross legged and close enough to the water that
she could reach out for it.
"I miss my sister," Ruin says quietly, scrappy locks of hair flying into her face amidst the edges of the waterfall's spray. "She was always the one to do this sort of stuff. Feelings. Thinking. I'd work out crazy new moves we could do, but she was the one who put them together."
Tirah nods slowly. "I am sorry." She furrows her brow into a frown and slowly wraps
one arm around the other girl. "I know nobody can replace family, and I would not dare to try,but remember that I am here, Yarith is here, and all the others too, if you ever need to talk or help, yes?"
Ruin traces her fingers over Salvation's hilt. "That's the thing though, isn't it? You have. All of you. You have replaced her." The corner of her lips quirks, just visible between clumps of hair. "And ... I think ... that's what she would've wanted."
Tirah raises her eyebrows slightly, her frown vanishing. "I am glad that you feel that way. Moving on is very hard. But also very healthy. Its a lesson I did not learn for a very long time, until I had some help with it." Her wide mouth forms into a soft smile after the last of her words.
In a sudden thrust of movement, Ruin scrubs roughly at her eyes with the heel of her other hand. "Lament," she says quietly. "That's the Name I want. Warden of Salvation's Lament."
Tirah nods slowly, her arm still around Ruin. "How do you think you could go about earning a name like that?"
Ruin closes her eyes and sighs. "I - I think I already am." She shivers, as if sensing something, and looks up at the waterfall. "I already am, aren't I?"
You say, "That makes sense."
You nod your head emphatically.
"So..." Ruin says, still looking up at nothing, "what do I do now?"
"My Warden of Salvation," murmurs a choral voice - a voice that is not only the Welkin Goddess's, but that of all of the Lost, drifting in from the rest of the platform. "In your Thread I see the echoes of this Name, and I judge it worthy of your Fate."
You flash Ruin a joyous smile.
Ruin bites down hard on her lip, her eyes turning glassy.
"You are already Second of your Name, but now you will make your oath for all three parts."
"Swear by the Lost, by your own life, and by Jesdia that it is your intent to pursue this impossible dream, and it shall be so."
Tears fill Ruin's eyes and begin to slowly run down her face.
Ruin tightens her grip on Salvation's hilt with one hand, and reaches up to grab onto your with the other. Then, very quietly, she says, "Okay."
Tirah gives Ruin's hand a firm squeeze and smiles softly, keeping quiet in this important moment.
A lost soul of Lacunyr kneels down into the water with a splash, their form shifting from one to the next.
Ruin tilts her head curiously at a lost soul of Lacunyr.
After flickering through several faces, a lost soul of Lacunyr settles at last upon one: a young woman, human, with dark brown skin and glossy black hair that runs to her waist. She wears a skintight costume in brilliant colours and a beautiful, radiant smile.
Tirah's eyes flick from the soul to Ruin, giving her hand another squeeze to signalize that she is here in case she needs the emotional support.
Ruin scrambles out of your arms, Salvation clattering to the floor as she splashes through the water to the lost soul. "Jes!" she tries to scream, but it comes out as nothing more than a broken breath. "Jesi, you - you're here, you - She..."
A lost soul of Lacunyr reaches out and presses a finger to Ruin's lips, silencing her. "I've been here the whole time, Jelly. But I have to go now."
A small, painful whimper escapes Ruin's lips. "Don't leave me again," she whispers, reaching out and running her hands desperately over her sister's hair. "Don't go."
A lost soul of Lacunyr leans close to Ruin and gently lays a kiss upon her forehead.
"I love you," a lost soul of Lacunyr says, her face crinkling in sadness for a moment before being replaced by another radiant smile. "I was here because I didn't want you to be alone. And now you're not."
Ruin sobs, a loud and horrible sound that shakes her shoulders. Jesdia pulls her in and embraces her, murmuring something into her hair that you can neither hear nor understand.
When she pulls away, Jesdia lifts her head to smile at you. "Look after my sister," she urges, before turning back to stroke Ruin's cheek. "Now, Jelly. It's alright."
Tirah nods firmly. "I will."
Her face crumpled into a hideous mess, Ruin leans forward and kisses Jesdia on the forehead, cradling her head in her hands. "I love you, Jesi," she mumbles, as mist flows from her breath and envelops her sister's soul in its embrace.
Piece by piece, Jesida dissolves - becoming one with the mist, which in turn becomes one with the waterfall itself.
Tirah immediatly pulls Ruin into a firm, close hug and does not let go any time soon. "You know that this is the best for her, and I meant what I said. I will always be here for you."
For a long time, Ruin simply sobs into your arms, until there is nothing more to be drawn out of her but two mumbled words: "Thank you."
Tears flow freely from your eyes as Czixi, the Welkin appoints you to a Hunter in the Heavens.
"Jelica," murmurs the Goddess's voice, no longer choral - now a whisper within the mist that
Tirah speaks softly. "It is alright, no reason to thank me." She gives the girl an especially firm squeeze.
Ruin sits back, rubbing at her eyes and blowing her nose loudly on an oddly pristine looking handkerchief that she produces out of nowhere. "You saved her. When You saved me."
(The Nameless): Czixi says, "Nameless Ones, My Vehement. Show your respect to two who have persevered in their fight for control of their Fates."
(The Nameless): Czixi says, "My Warden of the Eternal Tapestry, and My Hunter in the Heavens."
(Order): Aiya Ehc'zi says, "Oh goodness - congratulations, Lady Warden, Lady Mzithrei!"
(The Nameless): Aiya Ehc'zi says, "Dear me, I am so excited I am talking in the wrong places. Congratulations!"
Tirah gives Ruin another firm squeeze. "Will you be alright if I let go of you now, or shall I hold you a bit longer?"
(The Nameless): You say, "Thank you."
(The Nameless): Yarith (from the Ethereal Plane) says, "My congratulations as well, to the both of you."
"I think," Ruin says, with a nod, "I just want to sit here for a while. But - thanks. For, you know. Everything."
Ruin reaches over and ruffles your hair with a fond expression.
(The Nameless): Czixi says, "Know that on this day, Jelica Lautari has taken her oaths, and pledged herself fully to the Name of Warden of Salvation's Lament."
Tirah nods and flashes the girl a smile, before running a hand through her hair to
bring it back in order. "I will just sit here as well, if that is alright."
(The Nameless): Ruin says, "Blah blah, lots of ceremony, I'm awesome, we all knew that already."
(The Nameless): Yarith (from the Ethereal Plane) says, "What a sombre addition, but befitting for the Warden of Lacunyr, perhaps. My sincere congratulations."
(The Nameless): Aiya Ehc'zi says, "That is a beautiful Name, Lady Warden."
Ruin nods her head simply, then settles back to watch the waterfall in silence.
Tirah settles back down in her cross legged seat, merely an arm's length away from Ruin.