Brief Interlude: Tara & RelIt is morning in the home of one Rel Zhirah. It's cool in the house, as a young lady stirs in her sleep on the second floor. Tara [Harkon] wakes up and sits up, very very confused. "I'm never playing with Ged's things again..." She mutters, and gets out of bed to find Rel.
She goes downstairs and calls for him. "Rel? Where are you?"
No voice calls back. She noticed the back door in the kitchen was slightly ajar, and placed a hand on the handle. Not iron, whew. Well, you never knew with Rel. Making a mental note to find breakfast after she finds Rel, Tara stepped out onto the back porch, looking amongst the trees. What she had to say couldn't wait; she might forget. "Rel? Are you out here?"
The backyard is covered in a beautiful blanket of reds, oranges and yellows from the trees. Trees of varying types populated the area outside of the hedge, but here within Rel's Grove most of those trees ought not to exist in the surrounding environment. That was the funny thing about faeries and their magic: just about anything could happen around them, and very often did. About twenty or so feet from the porch, Tara saw a particularly gorgeous tree that was still holding onto its leaves, with bunches of berries clinging to their stalks; and sitting in front of it was Rel Zhirah, a newly-made faerie elf. Although the argument was that he was always Fae, he had just forgotten. As Tara approached, Rel opens his blue-gray eyes and smiled. "Good morning!" his usual booming voice quieter in the morning hours.
The girl didn't smile back. "Rel, I had a dream." She took a few more steps forward to stand next to the mage, but took care not to startle him, or interrupt anything he might be doing. Mages and their rituals always confused the girl, as she glanced about her host's person, this was no exception.
Rel sat within a circle drawn in the dirt. Around the circle Tara saw a couple of bright red berries, some oddly colored dirt, a bowl of water, a feather, and a 5 pointed star drawn in the dirt, with a short, wooden staff leaning against the small tree behind him. However, the man stood, dusting himself off as he did and grabbing the short staff. "What about?" he asked politely, bending slightly backwards to crack and pop the old bones.
"I'm not sure," Tara looked away at the pretty leaves. "It seemed like it was me, but it wasn't. ...Well, I think it wasn't. It started out with me just talking and laughing with some people. I didn't recognize them, but it seemed just like an ordinary gathering. Then the scene changed and I was just laying in a field of grass." Tara folded her arms over her chest, resting her right hand on her upper arm and tapping the fingers absentmindedly as she paused for a moment. "The next time I saw myself, I was all grown up, my hair was longer. I had met a man and gotten married. We lived in Fae and had a bunch of children. There was a war and some of the boys were killed. My husband took the rest of the children away and I tried to get them back, but I couldn't. So I got angry, and dressed myself in darkness and death...and led troops against Chimeron."
By the end of the telling, Tara had begun to shake slightly. "But that couldn't be me? Could it?"
Rel stepped out of the circle, looking down at the girl. "Dreams often tell us things, give us introspection we wouldn't otherwise get. Try not to take them literally, but think what they could mean. Was there anything more to the dream?"
"That's everything I remember."
Rel nodded sagely. "It's also possible you dreamed of your mo--of the person who gave birth to you. Like a dream about what happened to your Fae family."
Tara's eyes widened as she stared up at the magus, atiny smile on her lips forming. "If that's right, that would mean I was hidden so I'd be safe, not just because they were bored. But my... my fae mother, she's probably Alana Harkon, right? When did she lead troops against Chimeron?"
Rel nodded once more. "It is possible. As for when Alana would have attacked, I do not know. There were Fae forces sent against us many years ago, so it's possible she was a leader in those battles."
"She... 'I' seemed so sad in the dream. And it was just the same as what I've been trying to do, find them all again." Tara sighed. "Except that I can't go back into Fae to try again until I'm sure I won't end up some other when again. Any luck getting Ged back yet? Is he alive after blowing himself up?"
The magus looked taken aback for a moment. "I...I haven' t heard from him since the explosion. I'm sure he's still alive, but it is odd to not be contacted by him. Perhaps we'll hear from him today?"
Tara smiled as she saw that the bearded man was attempting to put her at ease. "Maybe. Hey, Rel, while we wait, will you tell me about Lucas?"
A large growl emanated from within the magus before he could give a proper response, and thus he chuckled. "Yes, but perhaps over breakfast?"
Tara nodded vigorously. "Breakfast sounds great!"
"Then let's get going, shall we?" Rel strode across the yard, walking into the house. Tara followed after him, seating herself precariously on a long stool near the table. Once inside the kitchen, the man set himself to making breakfast. Tara watched, rapt, as he sliced up a loaf of bread, taking the pieces and arranging them onto a plate. Another bowl was produced filled with butter, and he smiled apologetically at her as he placed the dishes on the table. "Sorry for the light fare. I'm not used to having guests. Is there something in particular you want that I can grab in market later?"
"There isn't anything I can think of, but could I come with you when you go?"
"Sure. We'll go tomorrow," he replied as Tara smiled while grabbing a piece of bread. He himself sat at the table, also grabbing a slice and placing a generous amount of butter on it. "So, you wanted to hear about Lucas?"
Tara nods, swallows and then speaks. "I've heard some...but I want to know what he was like. I want to learn about all of them...but from what people have said...my father wasn't a nice man and...well no one really had anything to say about any one else. Gryff said Lucas was the only one worth knowing."
"I will say this, all the Harkons I have known were strong willed. Stubborn some might say. They each fought long and hard for what they believed in, right or wrong."
"For which Harkon? I know the story of three."
"All of them." There is a, dare I say it, fire in Tara's eyes as she speaks.
"Well let me begin with Lucas, then" Rel smiles at the name. "Lucas was an elf, under the reign of the false king Oberon, although back in that time we didn't know any better. Lucas served as Oberon's champion, defending Fae from a variety of threats, both from within and without. While I'm not entirely sure why, Lucas one day left Fae. Perhaps he desired to see the outside world, or destroy some outside threat. Whatever the reason, he made the Realms his home, specifically Chimeron. Lucas swore to Queen Meg, and served her loyally for many years. Under her he did many great things. He was even made an Avatar of Chimeron for the sacrifices he made to the crown. He was a great man."
Tara's eyes are wide as she listens, completely enthralled in the story. "Then what?"
"I remember the day I met him quite well. I was new to adventuring, and had come across a tournament of sorts. A new Emperor was to be chosen for Teng Hua, and teams were being formed to support those who had made a claim. Lucas came up to me, offering me and a friend of mine a spot on their team. They were supporting the true heir of Teng Hua, Minimoto. Lucas had decided to lend him his sword, so he could claim his rightful place on the throne. After a brief conversation, in where I had mentioned possibly joining the team of Oni and necromancers, as I had no idea of such things at the time, I joined Team Minimoto"
Tara looks puzzled. "Oni?"
"Oni are a type of demon. They take power from another person by using their name. Nasty demons, but haven't been seen in some time"
Tara shudders a little. "They sound scary."
Rel nods. "They are." Rel clears his throat and continues "Shortly after joining his team, we took the field. Lucas was like as if anger became real. He leveled enemies, rarely leaving any in his wake. He was a sight to see. But more than just a force of nature, Lucas was a good person. You'll often hear people talk about how he was an harsh and unforgiving, but I will also tell you he was fiercely loyal and caring. He never gave up. No matter the odds, no matter the consequences, he always did the right thing"
Tara's eyes shine. "He sounds amazing..."
Rel smiles "He was. He truly was. It was a dark day when Lucas was taken from us."
Tara looks downcast. "This part, I've heard..."
Rel nods "A terrible, horrendous act to be done to a Fae, any Fae. And yet he stood there, knowing what could happen. Even in those final moments he stood his ground."
"Were the goblins punished?"
"That I don't know. The Goblin Rebellion lasted for some time, before eventually their leader, Robin G, joined with the True Court in their march against Oberon. Knowing goblins, they probably died, but I don't know for sure."
"What happened...after? Did they get him back?"
Rel's face falls some. "No, not immediately. At first reports were scattered. The rebellion was new and surprising. We thought he had just been captured. Later, reports came in saying he had been struck down by a Wayland blade. It was only much later, when we found "him" did we learn the truth. He had actually been forged into a Wayland blade. As soon as we recovered the blade, work began immediately to try to restore him. Gryf did much of the work, although I know others were involved. In the end the blade was destroyed, and I believe his soul has since cycled."
Tara closes her eyes and takes a deep breath. "G-Ged said he thinks that the Blackstar Guild found Lucas...or well...Cycled Lucas...."
"I have heard rumors of Lucas, or who he is now, being around. This is the first I heard of Black Star involvement, though it doesn't really surprise me."
Tara nods slowly. "Do the others have happier stories?" There is a pleading look in her eyes like she wants it to be true, but doubts it greatly.
"Well Lucas' story isn't sad, just his life. Remember as a Fae, we get a chance to live many lives. Don't think of his ending, but him getting a chance to do it all over again." Rel smiles weakly, trying to bring the subject into a happier light.
Tara nods a little bit, not completely sure she understands.
"It's like going to a costume party. Each time you want to come as something new and exciting, but it's always you inside the costume. What's inside never changes, just what you wear."
Tara smiles, understanding now. "Like Black and White? With the masks?"
"Exactly! We all look different, but beneath the mask is just us." Rel smiles
Tara sighs. "Maybe its just sixteen years spent growing up human...but it still seems sad. What happened to the other two you knew?"
"The other two, who I didn't know as well, were your father and your uncle."
"Uncle... I think Gryff mentioned him. I think he said to stay away from him."
"Well that's easy, as Bou-- ...Nimbus ended his life at the end of our march to Oberon. Much like his brother and nephew, he was strong willed and stubborn. Unlike them, however, his strengths were in lies, deception, and cunning. He made an excellent Duke of Trickery. He stood by Oberon to the end. Granted, I think he was planning on taking Oberon's position, if he could. That plan was quickly ended by Nimbus when she ended his life. Still, he fought for what he believed in, even if it was wrong."
"But he was a bad man?" asks Tara.
Rel nods. "I would say so. I guess it all depends on what you view as bad. He was not an honorable man, but that came with the job. He was a loyal man, but to the wrong king. It's hard to accurately label good and bad when you are on the winning side of a war." Rel furrows his brow, grimacing again.
Tara tilts her head to the side. "Rel? Is something wrong?"
Rel forced a small smile, before it fell again. "The Fae Wars were brutal. Many Fae fell, all because they were on the wrong side. I was proud to put the True King back on the throne. I am less proud of having to kill so many Fae to do so. Some who were just defending the only life they ever knew."
Tara stood and hugged Rel. "If there had been another way, someone would have found it. I know they would have. That doesn't make it good, sure, but it makes it a little better, right?"
His eyes had a far-away look to them, the smile completely gone. "We tried for a long time. Tried to bring all of Fae to our side. Many came, but not all. You're right though, it does make it better."
"And the ones who died, they cycled right?"
"All but Oberon."
"Because he broke the rules?"
There was a sudden coldness to Rel's loud voice, slightly pricking the little fae's ears as he spoke. "In so many terrible, terrible ways did he break the rules. I feel no mercy or pity for him. He got exactly what he deserved."
"Wh-what about my father?" Tara says slowly as she shrank back a bit in her chair. She didn't like the coldness in Rel's voice and attempted to change the subject.
Rel cleared his throat as warmth returned to the booming voice. "Your father I did not know well, sadly. I met him once, at the tenth Feast of Chimeron. All the Fae Dukes and Duchesses were in attendance, including Sardath Harkon. Unfortunately I forget his place, although I thought it was Monsters. I do know Lucas and him never got along, but not surprising given their stubborn nature. During that weekend, he went missing and it was assumed he was taken out. Recent evidence, however, would seem to indicate he is alive and well."
"Was my--my fae mother there too? What was she like?"
Rel smiled. "She was, as a matter of fact. She served Titania as a Lady in her court. Alana, your mother, was very pretty if I remember correctly. Soft spoken, but seemed to have a good heart."
Tara looked away when Rel called Alana her mother but after a moment faced him once more. "Is she alive too?"
"I believe so. A faerie messenger told me they were both still in hiding. For what, I don't know."
Tara nodded. "Once whatever is going on is, um, settled... will you come with me to see about finding them? Or at least finding out more? It would be nice to go to the Library and not find the Mists."
"I can, if you want me to. Like I said, I'll be sending a message to them through the Court once I can get in contact them again. Unfortunately between Bedlam, the Mists, and everything else, it hasn't exactly been a quiet time."
"I understand." Tara smiled broadly, happy to have made a joke. "It seems like I've picked a poor time to discover that I'm Fae."
Rel chuckled slightly. "Better late than never. At least you didn't suddenly get horns growing out of your head." His eyes looked slightly cross-eyed as he peered up at the two satyr horns protruding from his scalp.
Tara raised an eyebrow at him and ran her fingers through her hair, touching her ear on the way by. "At least you weren't, um, what exactly is the verb form of illusion?"
"Illusioned?" He nodded. "I believe so. And that's true, granted the horn-growing thing itched a lot more."
Tara giggled. Rel stood up, beginning to clear off the table from breakfast. "So did you write Kovaks about staying here?"
Tara nodded. "I did."
Rel continued to clean. "Good. Just want to make you are accounted for, before she thinks I've lost you, too."
Tara sighed. "Is she still upset?"
Rel faced Tara, with a smile creeping slowly onto his face. "My dear, she's always upset about something. Currently it's me, regardless of the fact I didn't put him there. Next week it'll be something else."
Tara nodded, a little smile on her face. "I'll try not to let her scalp you."
Rel chuckled as his mouth broke out into a full grin. "Thanks, I appreciate that."
Created by Janna Oakfellow-Pushee at 01-26-15 09:09 PM
Last Modified by Janna Oakfellow-Pushee at 01-26-15 09:09 PM
Last Modified by Janna Oakfellow-Pushee at 01-26-15 09:09 PM