In Which Gabriella Is Uncertain, and Finds Hope

GabriellaGabriella Member Posts: 449 Fabled
(From March of 2012).

You frown at a midnight black rose.

You reach out and touch the Font of Creativity.

You dip your fingers in the font, feeling the energy emanating from the depths as ripples shiver across the surface of the water.

Power courses through your body, playing across your skin and suffusing your being with an unquenchable energy.

Absently, you say, "Lady?"

A questioning sensation fills the air around you.

Absently, you say, "Is the bedroom that we already have in the temple to go to Kavindra?"

You put a midnight black rose into the Font of Creativity.

You pull apart a midnight black rose and sprinkle the petals across the water in the font, listening to the soft laughter of the falls as the current flows over the edge and into the world beyond.

A warm voice murmurs, "Yes."

The surface of the water turns a shadowed grey and then slowly clears, an image forming within the boundless depths of a shy poet on a wind-swept peak before an indigo sky, practicing a speech. An expression of dawning realisation passes  across her face as she looks at a crumpled note suspended in the air before her. Suddenly, she closes her eyes tightly.

After a few moments, the shadowed grey colour spreads across the image again,
before it spills over the edge of the Font drop by drop and out of sight, leaving only the pristine depths of the waters. You crease your brow in a frown.

"Speak your mind, dear one."

You shake your head.

"You are free to do so. Did you have other plans?"

You have emoted: Gabriella rakes a hand through her curls. "Oh no, Lady. I'm just...not exactly sure how to...voice my thoughts at the moment. I've been...wandering a lot. Much on my mind."

The air whirls around you as warm as an embrace, and the voice whispers, "Start at the beginning."

You have emoted: Gabriella tips her head back to study the ceiling. "Well...I've been dreamweaving a lot as of late."

You murmur, "I had forgotten how disorienting it can be. I actually feel strange, moving about in my body, right now. It feels heavier somehow."

A wry smile spreads across your face.

The Cloudless Sanctum.

Flowing geometrical patterns of blue and ivory tiles line the high vaults of the

ceiling, combining in curving circles and whorls that hint at more complex and

meaningful patterns within the curves of the domes. High slits in the vaults of

the ceiling admit light that spills across the sparkling waters of the font,

raising silvery reflections from the quartz of the basin. Indistinct images

whisper through the air, evaporating into daydreams as soon as they manifest. A

soft, sweet breeze eddies through the chamber, bringing with it the scent of

flowers and fresh air. Water flowing endlessly into the world beyond, the Font

of Creativity stands here emanating a sense of peaceful serenity and power.

You see exits leading northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest.

You sit yourself down.

You have emoted: Gabriella rests her back carefully against the side of the Font.

"What do you dream when you walk without your body?"

You say, "I do not...dream, in that form. I am free to go where I will, though,

see what there is to be seen, so long as I am careful."

You have emoted: Gabriella pauses for a moment, and then adds, "I've been to the Glomdoring, mostly. I've picked up my research about Grutina Oakvine again. I stumbled across her, in their collegium by accident a few months back. I...was brave enough to bring my body to me, in that Forest, and then paint her picture before quickly teleporting home."

"Where comes this interest, dear one?"

You say, "In Grutina?"

You tilt your head curiously.


You say, "I've always been interested in her. Ever since I was very young. She was a Hartstone, as You know. Of course, this was before the cairns were revealed in the Forest, and there was so little to know about her. I wanted to make sure people understood the history behind her. We weren't supposed to forget something like that."

You take a personal journal from a soft black leather satchel.

"You sometimes sound almost disturbed by your own interest."

A dent appearing between her brows as she frowns, you say, "I started recording notes about her, though I cleaned the messy ones out of my journal. But I still have my first entry here, that I made as an introduction of sorts. I used to spend days and months in the library, searching - my friend, Nanun, he had to drag me out sometimes to get a bit of fresh air."

You frown and say, "I ended up stopping my research after a few years. I haven't touched it in ages...I suppose I was a little obsessed with it."

You have emoted: Gabriella smooths her hands over the cover of her journal slowly.

Faintly, the voice murmurs, "This is not the first time you have brought this up to Me."

You have emoted: Gabriella exhales heavily and then admits, "No, it is not. *Is* it disturbing, Lady?"

"I only wonder how you feel, for it seems that you are feeling something strongly."

You have emoted: Gabriella shakes her head, impatient with herself. "I do not know what I feel."

"Are you intrigued by the forest to the south?"

You open your mouth to say something, but speech fails you.

Slowly, you say, "Perhaps...a bit. I wonder how they can live in such a such a way. Why they would choose to do such a thing..."

"You wish to know why..."

You frown and say, "I know I had hoped to try and understand a little, in my wanderings. And I was curious about what their forest is like."

You say, "Know thine enemy, that is how the saying goes, yes?"

You rub your temples in frustration.

You sigh, "I think I had hoped to understand, just a little, why the Wyrd could warp Grutina in such a way. I wanted to be able explain it properly, in whatever work I chose to do with my research. A play, a book - to help warn people away from her mistakes..."

You frown and say, "I think that's why."

"Such an edict usually does not elicit the feelings I see in you. Do you not agree?"

You tilt your head curiously.

You say, " not normally wish to know my enemy?"

"There is something disturbed in you. I worry about it."

You have emoted: Gabriella looks down.

You say, " You worry, Lady?"

"For you seem to worry, Gabriella. You come to Me fidgeting and fretting, not with your usual smile."

Quietly, you say, "I do not have any reason to worry, I should not think."

You say, "I should think, rather."

"Then why are you quiet, dear one?"

You open your mouth to say something, but speech fails you.

Weakly, you say, "I just...I...don't know what to think about my fascination. I never really had a project that...consumed me, before. Is this normal? Or am I treading down a dangerous path?"

You sigh, "I think on some level I'm worried I might end up like Grutina.
Warped, somehow, if I examine too closely the Wyrd."

"There is a comparison that can be made between the scholar and the subject. And yet nothing has the power to control your own will. You are a strong woman, and I have faith in you."

You have emoted: Gabriella leans her cheek against the Font, closing her eyes.  "I don't feel as strong as You seem to believe I am, my Lady. I feel very small, indeed, sometimes."

Her eyes closed still, you sigh, "...Glomdoring is not the only place I've visited, in my wanderings."

"Tell Me."

You have emoted: Gabriella seems to huddle down against the side of the Font, quiet for a moment, before she says in a small voice, "I've been to Lord Nocht's fulcrux."

In a small voice, you say, "In both my physical, and my dreambody."

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity manifests already holding your face in Her hands, kneeling beside you.

You have emoted: Gabriella cracks open an eyelid, peeking up at Maylea, and then quickly shuts her eyes tight again.

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "You are strong indeed, My Gabriella. You are an

heir of the Serenwilde. Have you any idea how much you have inherited?"

You have emoted: Gabriella makes a muffled noise, perhaps one of dissent, still keeping her eyes tightly closed.

You shake your head.

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity slides a palm against your face, whispering, "You are the heir to a legacy that extends farther than any of you know. Yours is the forest who stood up and survived the Taint wars, the ones who preserved purity at the expense of anything - friend, family, foe. You have every reason to hold your head high, Gabriella."

You have emoted: Gabriella takes an unsteady breath, listening to Maylea intently. She gives her head a little shake. "But that was before my time, Lady Maylea. A long time ago. Perhaps my ancestors, but not of my own actions. How can I believe myself capable of such...strength as that? The forest..." She pauses, her jaw flexing as she clenches her teeth briefly before she resumes whispering, "The forest is rife with...malcontent, indecision. We cannot keep  leader, cannot band together as we should. There is depression, and lethargy, here. Almost no hope."

You whisper, "Sometimes it feels as if we are rotting from the inside out, from our...our declining feelings. If such a Forest as Serenwilde can be susceptible to such a fate, then how can a mere elfen like myself ever be...strong enough, to resist temptation of something that fascinates her in almost alarming ways?"

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity gently raises your face to look directly into your eyes. With great passion, almost trembling, She says, "We will find hope. If the Serenwilde does not preserve what was, who will? There is no one else. The forest will fall without you, and with it all that is left of a time only the Elders can remember."

You have emoted: Gabriella opens her eyes as her chin is lifted, meeting Maylea's gaze with sad reluctance. "We are rotting from the inside, my Lady," she repeats softly.

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "Gabriella... why are you fighting Me? Have I not known you for most of the years of your life? Is My judgement not sound?"

You have emoted: Gabriella flinches slightly, dropping her gaze. "I am sorry my Lady. I do not mean to question You," she whispers.

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity sits back upon Her heels, hands dropping into Her lap. She whispers as though surprised, "My apologies, Gabriella. I am only distraught to see you so."

You have emoted: Gabriella lifts her hands, rubbing them over her face in frustration with herself. She drops them into her own lap, her head tipping forward. Her black curls tumble down in a small curtain around her face as she mumbles, "I am sorry, my Lady. Radalise has said that I have not been acting like myself as of late. Perhaps she is right after all."

Maylea purses Her lips pensively, gazing off into the distance as She carefully gathers Her thoughts.

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "You say that there is a problem with hope in the Serenwilde? This is what is affecting you so?"

You rub your temples in frustration.

You sigh, "I've not voiced it myself before, but there are plenty who have told me so. I think it's lessened as of late, what with Hiriako taking charge, but I..."

You say, "There's much apathy."

You say, "Sometimes."

You tilt your head back and look up at the sky.

With conviction, Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "We will see what can be done."

You have emoted: Gabriella leans forward somewhat suddenly, taking Maylea's hands into her own. "My can You always be so sure?" she asks, shaking her head. " know I always trust in You, and believe You, can You know for certain, even as a Divine?"

You say to Maylea, "I think myself so sure and strong in my convictions of things, and then - I find myself wandering in places that I do not belong. So how..."

Squeezing your hands, Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "One is never certain, Gabriella. And yet there was a time when we thought creation itself would end, and here we stand still existing..."

Her voice subdued, you say, "During the time of the Wars?"

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "Yes... friends, dear friends, even My own siblings perished... every day there were fewer of us, and no hope that we would prevail."

Softly, you say, "Yes...I read the stories. It was frightening to think of the Gods themselves unable to stop something."

Absently, you say, "I only hope I can do it justice."

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "We will manage, Gabriella... only do not give up."

You give a pained sigh.

You have emoted: Gabriella looks up at Maylea, squeezing Her hands tightly. "I do so wish You were my Mother, Lady," she says, with the utmost, deepest sincerity. "You always...always, are there for me, even when I come to You with nonsense and frivolous burdens."

You say to Maylea, "Aunt Aramel has been a strong motherly influence to me as well in the past, but You, my Lady, are always."

With a quiet smile, Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "You are dear to Me, and you always will be. Remember this, and remember that we will make hope, given enough time."

Softly, you say to Maylea, "It is just so very hard, when I keep doubting myself when I am alone. I want to have hope, to give hope, but I cannot clear out my own dark corners so easily. These...disturbing attractions."

You close your eyes and inhale deeply, absorbing the scent of your surroundings.

You shake your head.

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "I shall talk to Hiriako."

With a faint smile, you say, "He has been doing well, so far. I only hope it will continue."

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "Well he shall have My overt support."

Maylea leans close to you and gently lays a kiss upon your forehead.

You close your eyes and inhale deeply, absorbing the scent of your surroundings.

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "Dear one, I care for you. Try to be the hope you wish to see in your fellows, and see what happens."

Maylea, Bloom of Serenity says, "I shall leave you for the moment, but know that I am never too far away."

You have emoted: Gabriella laughs and then nods weakly. "The Hope? I shall try. Perhaps I am The Hope and should design myself as such, to encourage it," she jokes.

Maylea smiles softly.

You will now be known as Gabriella Starfall, Blossoming Hope, by order of Maylea, Bloom of Serenity.

Maylea steps into the aether, the air around Her blurring into a wash of colour that fades as She disappears.

You blink.

Gaping slightly, you whisper, "Thank You, Lady."

"You are so much bigger than you think you are," She says, fervently. "You are a beacon of hope that shines through the world with every step you take. You are My beacon, Gabriella, and you shine even into the darkest of nightmares."
The air sparkles with silver motes of light as a silken voice says, "You will see growth and strength where others will see weakness. You will walk with Us as a paragon of Serenwilde's power, for you have already walked this path before."
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