(IRP) Blessings

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Aishe
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Re: (IRP) Blessings

Post by Aishe »

Aishe clasped her hands together on the table as she answered her cousin’s question: “I am waving the bride price… I shall trust yourself judgement and trust that Vand can take care of you. You may keep what may have been asked of you to build your future together.”

The answer was directed to them both, followed by an explanation for Vand, should he not have been told about the custom. She went with the assumption he already understood the vital role women played in their culture.

“Normally, the bride’s family requests a payment of some kind to help the family manage losing a vital member of their family, when their daughter is being married… Because the bride will be moving on from their household to start her own family.

However, there are times the family turns down the bride price and allow the groom to keep the payment. Usually, the price is offered before it is turned down. The offer is seen as display of love and ability to provide.

I mean no disrespect by not accepting a bride price.”
The last remark was mostly directed to Rowena. “I have no need for your money; there is more need for it amongst yourselves.

Fulfill my quests and you will have my permission and blessing.”
Aishe Ehsan Sanchari-Kuhlash | Married to Akos | Mother of 14
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Vand
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Re: (IRP) Blessings

Post by Vand »

Vand wondered to which point both ladies would have talked about him in the past. Rowena and Aishe seemed to understand each other very well, and after the initial introductions the conversation didn’t take too long to be guided straight to the point. Not finding a great deal of inspiration in terms of finding things to talk about, the dark elf appreciated the clarity of their explanation. And so far at least, there were no reactions of surprise, concern or distaste to worry about. The positivity calmed him, and his shoulders relaxed slightly against the chair.

Their traditions didn’t strike him as strange. In his experience amongst some of the many peoples of that world it was common to represent the promises and alliances of weddings in some sort of physical evidence, and symbology was always important. The drow of the Spider Spire held little regard for such unions - Matrons held absolute power in their families as much as in society as a whole - But even then it wasn’t unusual for different houses to join in similar, although much more temporary, alliances. Growing up in such a society, marrying hadn’t been something expected from him, and he had assumed it was a fate to be avoided.

But his life had changed so much since then. Vand looked at Rowena, and just like every time he did, his desire to spend their lives together only became stronger. He smiled, and focused his attention back on the details of the conversation. Picking up the necklace to study its particular craft, his mind already drifted between a plethora of ideas. Busy in that thought, he didn’t notice yet the truth in the secret exchange between the two women.

“You value crafting a great deal, and so do I. Building, making, creating beauty with one’s own hands and dedication. It’s something I’ve really appreciated and worked on since I started living in the surface, so I believe the challenge is fair and suited to my skills.” He nodded. It would be an important project, and one with many steps. The explanation of a bride price, however, steeled his gaze momentarily with a more sombre, serious tone. “Thank you for waving that part. I mean no disrespect either, but I will never buy or sell a person. That’s a tradition I’m not willing to support, whether it is my people’s or someone else’s. Rowena is priceless. If anything, I’d like the marriage to bring us closer as a family, not to be seen as if I’m taking her away from you.”

“I understand where that comes from, though.” He took a moment to collect his thoughts and cheer up again, not wanting to let anything sour a time of happiness. The dark elf nodded, and stood back up quiet and polite. “And don’t worry about it, Aishe. The world is large, and the land is generous to us. There’s not much we need, and all we want, we have. I’m here, for her, no matter what. Now, if that is all… It sounds like I have some work to do.”
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Aishe
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Re: (IRP) Blessings

Post by Aishe »

The disdain towards the bride price custom was unsurprising. Being raised Romany, it was normal to her, but she was not amiss that in some cultures, such an idea was undesired. Even on a personal basis, the concept could receive hate. She appreciated the continued respect Vand carried as he spoke.

As he stood, the Kralisi looked over at her cousin before standing herself. The meeting was short and sweet, which was oddly preferable for the social butterfly. Vand was really the first “outsider” she had interacted with since her return from the Nether, besides the creatures on council. She found herself already longing for the emptiness of her vardo.

“I look forward to seeing what you bring, Vand.” Aishe smiles faintly, but the smile was genuine. She slid past him to open the door, blinking at the bright light of the outdoors. Under normal circumstances, she may have asked Rowena to stay longer, but instead she offered her little cousin a hug. “ Me kamav tu. [I love you.]”
Aishe Ehsan Sanchari-Kuhlash | Married to Akos | Mother of 14
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♛ Queen Mother of Fenia | The White Wolf | PR & Advisor for Bravia 🍓
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Rowena
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Re: (IRP) Blessings

Post by Rowena »

Rowena smiled as she stood up as well. Her thoughts whirling with everything that had happened, and of everything that was going on. She hugged Aishe once more. “Me kamav tu. [I love you.]” She responded as she stepped out into the sunlight. "When you are better, we will come by again. Rest well simensa." She could tell that Aishe's social battery was running out and she was more than happy to get going as well. Ro had a lot to think about and consider. She looked up at Vand, taking his hand in her's and lacing their fingers together as they headed home.
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Vand
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Re: (IRP) Blessings

Post by Vand »

The days that followed that family meeting were hectic. Vand had a goal in mind now, a target. The task that Rowena’s family asked from him was quite openly a test, and one with multiple challenges and many options left to his designs. It was personal. The dark elf took it seriously, passionate about giving his fiancée a chance at the best wedding she could imagine. Did it matter? Probably not that much. He very much doubted that any piece of jewelry or art in the world could really harm how strongly they felt for each other. But it was, nonetheless, something that clawed at him. He wouldn’t disappoint.

He travelled wide and deep across Secfenia. Got lost in its hidden forests, delved into the darkest caves of his native underground world. Some nights were spent away from Rowena, and in that solitude the mere memory of her warm embrace pushed him onwards. Ideas crowded his thoughts, arrays of tools and different materials danced between his fingers. With so much in mind, elven nature made it hard to rest and dream, keeping him focused and awake as he sailed through the crafting process.

Tinkering with the translucent, mysterious crystals born from the bowels of the earth had been one of his favourite past times for years now. Occupying himself with them had kept him sane during his first weeks in the bright, strange world of the surface when he had first reached those lands. And the craft had accompanied him ever since. Like starry skies, multi-coloured crystalline caves had ended up becoming the background to important moments in his relationship. And when Vand finally settled down, it was their carving, sculpting and masonry that had become his trade. They would feature in his work this time around, that much was sure.

*****

He was exhausted, but happy. Vand’s heart rushed as they approached Aishe’s vardo once again, and he turned to wrap Rowena in his arms. To kiss her, to thank her without words for all she meant to him. The day had finally arrived to present his gifts, and he walked on to prepare them all on a long table set outdoors, lined with protective, soft cloth. One after another, he carefully placed every item on top of it, arranged in their particular order.

Freznics treated, stretched in thin threads of gold that weaved together a graceful set of two necklaces, both patterned with curved, gentle shapes of leaves and flowers. At a first glance they would perhaps look humble, small when compared to the boastful tastes of high society. But if one approached to study their manufacture, to feel their texture on one’s skin, the countless hours of work and care in each piece would obvious to eye and touch. There were two of them. One smaller in the fashion of an elegant choker, and another hanged lower, more relaxed on what would be the center of the wearer’s chest. Gentler threads of gold connected both together in the front, coming together in the center and fanning apart on both extremes - Like both the roots and branches of a symbolic tree.

From that necklace shone at regular intervals the individual hooks and coins that Aishe had previously explained. To match his work, elements of roma and elven tradition blended seamlessly through the design. The hooks were rounded to each side like small double spirals, curved to avoid any discomfort to the wearer. And from them, instead of raw rows of coins, hanged the polished, clean currencies of a large, generous world. There were many cultures, many people in Secfenia, and Vand had chosen a selection of meaningful elements used in trading deals all around. Amongst them one could see the golden acorn of the druids of the north, or a white pearl of the roving seas. Ruby, emerald and sapphire in the discrete, smooth shape of drops. But between them were also the more uncommon. Those of the land, those of the peoples that contented themselves with a simpler life of caring and giving. A rounded bead of clear glass, a small feather, the polished ivory and bone. Once again, they were not large or ostentatious, but they were very finely made. Set on the fine gold of the necklace, the jewels looked like growing berries of many colours.

The second challenge was difficult as well. Sadly, the dark elf didn’t exactly come from a place of love, or at least one where such a thing was casually spoken about. It took him a long time to come up with an idea, but even the drow appreciated beauty and fell head over heels from time to time. Theirs was a story of hate, but also one of sadness and longing, of a glorious past age ruined by forgotten sins. He was quiet for a moment, wondering if his choice would be good enough. Vand nodded quietly and reached out, setting right next to the necklace a simple, multifaceted bottle of clear glass - The size of a vial of perfume.

The third one, however, was different. It occupied most of the display, but didn’t look very impressive at first glance. A familiar series of concentric rings and spokes, built and arranged clearly in what could only be a wheel. The heavy, sanded wood had taken a much different set of skills and tools to work through, but the result felt solid, safe. On each intersection of a spoke with the outer ring was a carved notch, and within each hole was hammered a square slab of purple crystal.

Vand saved a moment to take a deep breath. To step back and look at the strange assortment of items. Some of which would need a brief explanation, but he was ready to answer anything he could be asked. He looked at Rowena, and walked to her side. “Let’s do this.” He smiled. Hand in hand, Vand lead on and knocked on Aishe’s door.
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Aishe
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Re: (IRP) Blessings

Post by Aishe »

The sun warmed her back as it came through the window. She was slowly becoming less sensitive to the sunlight again. Even if the rays were burning her skin, she would have gone unaware. Before her, cards roughly the size of her hand lay spread out. Some were face up, others facedown. The twelve cards made three separate designs - a cross, a diamond, and a line. It was known as the Star spread. It was the Kralisi’s favourite tarot card spread. Her attention was only pulled from the half-finished reading when there came a knock.

Normally, she’d have caught the noise if someone approaching. Instead, she jumped. Grumbling at herself, she stood up and went to the door. Upon opening, she found Rowena and her beloved. Aishe smiled.

“Welcome back.” The pale vampire looked marginally better than she did for their last visit, but still not the queen her cousin knew. Her attire was more laid back this time, consisting of a rather sheer skirt and a one piece of sorts, with frantic flowing from her shoulders and reattaching to her body at her wrists. It was pink with blue fabric beneath to hide a bit of her frame. Her long locks was in a simple braid, instead of free for the wind like usual.

Bright eyes caught the nearby table as she hugged her cousin in greeting. Once she stepped back, she snatched a sun hat off a hook and put it on. Her face was the most sensitive, but the hat trick still worked beautifully years after she was killed.

“I am intrigued,” Aishe said simply. She abandoned her reading, shutting the door behind her to keep Rowena’s eyes from the table. She walked across the short distance to the display, bare feet relishing the feel of grass. She took a moment to look each of the items over, without touching. After she examined them each, she turned to the elf with genuine curiosity behind the expression of duty.

“What have you brought me, Vand?”
Aishe Ehsan Sanchari-Kuhlash | Married to Akos | Mother of 14
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♛ Queen Mother of Fenia | The White Wolf | PR & Advisor for Bravia 🍓
Kralisi Kaer of Boreens Durri Roma (BDR) ☾ Rani Ji Purrana
[Art | World Historian ]
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Vand
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Re: (IRP) Blessings

Post by Vand »

- Three gifts, for the three challenges. - He nodded, guiding Aishe to the improvised display of his achievements. A slight tinge of nervousness shuffled within him, but Vand noticing was enough to quieten it down; Like the beast that acts coy once found to be lurking around. - I don’t know if they are what you had in mind, but I followed my instinct.

The dark elf rolled his sleeves up subconsciously, and reached out to pick up with care the flowing necklace of precious metals and jewels. Light, bright, it almost wanted to flow within one’s fingers like an elusive spring of clear water. He gestured to place the item on Aishe’s hands, inviting her to observe the craftsmanship by herself.

- This is the first gift for Rowena, one of world and land. You called it Ora Merrikla. Two loops, like our two worlds, joined as one. Coin was the requirement of tradition, but I represented it in many of its forms. Every small piece of metal, gem or bauble holds great value to different peoples, in different lands where we have lived in, that we have visited, or that still haven’t had the chance to cross.

Vand paused, without a hurry. He hoped his artwork had managed to capture the feelings and intentions that he had willed into the long hours of delicate labour. It had been a deeply personal project that he had been keeping in secret for a while, so he prepared just as well as he could for the reception of criticism. After a moment, he carried on.

- The second gift is meant to be an idea, the symbol of eternal love to my kind. This one was difficult. The city I grew in is a dark and cruel place, where there’s not a lot of space for ideas like this one. But where there’s people, there’s hope. They’re still elves, and they still greatly appreciate beauty in all things. The night sky is one of those things that my people dream about, and I have only been loved, been graceful since I found myself under the stars. This small vial has inside it the distilled essence of moonlight, and will flicker and shine in the deepest shadow.

Even the smallest things, like that transparent, reflective vial, could come to hold great meaning or great power. It almost seemed insignificant, there between the treasure of a golden necklace and the industry of what went next.

- And this is the third one, a wheel. - He smiled. - Which I sadly can’t claim to have invented, and perhaps isn’t the most obvious representation of our undying love. But here, come closer.

Vand invited her over, and pointed to the pieces of translucent crystal embedded to the heavy wooden frame. Leaning closer, he gently pressed two fingers along one of the radial spokes and pushed it on. The wheel started turning, slowly, but instead of slowing down as one would expect, strange forces pushed it on, accelerating its speed on the spot.

- I thought of this during our travels. I had long known about the curious effects of some of the crystals growing underground, but never really came up with the idea. These particular ones have the simple property of repelling each other when brought near, but they’re strong. When the wheel turns, the crystals repel each other and add to the force of its movement. - For a moment, he lost himself in the potential of it all. - These will be perfected. I will add them to our vardo, perhaps others as well. They will let people travel further, faster, with heavier loads... Rowena and I have been through many things since we first met. The road wasn’t always easy, but we held together, we always pushed on. There is a force in us for which there is no climb too steep, and that’s where this idea came from.
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