First, Finest and Last

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Windstar
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Windstar » Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:00 am

Kelesaria

Kel can't remember her first, so many centuries ago. A Kaldorei hunter, about the same age as she was, but his name and face have been lost over time.

Kel's first was a demon, a doomguard that thought the tiny camp of refugees was weak, and the tethered nightsabers would make easy pickings. True, the guards' swords and arrows had weakened the thing first, but no one contested that it was Kel's bow that fired the shaft that went through it's eye and into it's brain. That was the first moment that Kel knew the path her life would walk.

Kel's first was Rhaj, the nightstalker that chose to be her friend and companion for so many years. He was her first lesson on loyalty, persistence, and the responsibility of caring and providing for someone other than herself. He taught her about the pain of letting go, as well, when age finally slowed the lightning reflexes, and crippled the powerful muscles.


Her finest is 'her' druid. From the first time Kel and Dracoth met, the sparks drew them together. Weeks, months, sometimes years would pass between trysts, but each time they reunited, it was like returning home. Kel never asked if he ever took other lovers in between, and he never asked about hers. When they were together, whether in bed at an inn or sprawled on a blanket in a forest campsite, nothing and no one else existed.

Kel's finest could be the demon lord of Karazhan. Or the twin monstrosities in the Citidel. Or the corrupted and suffering form of the dragon, Azurgos. Except, she will not take credit for any of those, because she was never alone. Whether friends, fellow soldiers, or simply random strangers that asked for some assistance in exchange for some gold and excitement, each death had been a combined effort, and she would never forget the help of others just to fill her own pride.

Sabre is, and always will be, Kel's finest. From the first moment that she said his name, as he held her pinned in the snow in Winterspring, their souls have been joined. None of Kel's other companions understands her as well as he does, and their uncanny bond has created several family stories and jokes about her ability to read animals' minds. She knows he will throw himself in front of Kil'jeaden, Ragnoros, or even Deathwing himself to protect her, and he knows she will never ask him to. She also knows that when his time comes, whether in battle or from old age, it will hurt like no other loss she can imagine. But for now, she can watch him pacing at her side, always within arm's reach, and be content. And scoff at the other people who would say, "It's just an animal."


Kel's last was Drac, and probably would be until Elune decides to take one or the other to Her side. He never says anything about her newest scars, or complains (much) when Sabre decides to appropriate half of the bed. He has never said anything about her inability to give him children. He is one of the few constants in her life, and she can't imagine it any other way.

Kel's last was a flame druid in the Molten Front. She no longer thought of them as fellow Kaldorei. They had willingly allowed an evil being to twist them into their unnatural state, and thus they had become monsters that needed to be put down. And putting down monsters was something that Kel had a lot of practice with.

Kel's last is a shadow, eyes burning red with the voodoo magic the trolls had used to control him. The panther Damien is still getting accustomed to a master that asks rather than commands, and gives affection instead of pain, and he is a continual test to her patience. But every time he turns those glowing eyes on Kel, she knows he's ready to follow, wherever she might lead.
Yesterday is a memory
Tomorrow is a dream
Today is the reality
Make the most of it.

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Threnn
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Threnn » Sun Sep 11, 2011 1:05 pm

Threnn

The green-eyed bard had been her first. She'd gone to the Recluse to watch him play, intent on finding someone to give a summer's worth of lessons to Anna. His talent was obvious from the start. She'd found herself watching his fingers on the lute, wondering what they'd feel like skating over her skin. He'd invited her to his room later to discuss the details of his employ, and they'd laughed over honeyed wine. Then he'd leaned in and kissed her -- or maybe she'd kissed him -- and they'd made their way to the bed. The actual negotiations for Anna's lessons were done hours later, in between kisses as dawn lightened the sky.

The recruits in Northshire Abbey had been her first. Brother Sammuel had stood over her shoulder, watching as she pulled the Light into herself and then pushed it into their bodies, closing the minor wounds they'd received during training, mending a sprain here, a fracture there. It was taxing work. Those first weeks had left her drained and shaking at the end of the day, but she'd imagined it was the kind of exhaustion ascetics felt at the end of a fast. Let others define themselves by the lives they'd taken; Threnody al'Cair would define herself by the lives she'd saved.

Thenia al'Cair had been her first. She'd lost everything but her husband and her baby when the orcs came, and damned if she'd ever lose her family. During those months they spent cowering in basements and caves around Grand Hamlet, she'd decided that -- should this child live to take a breath -- it would be well-provided for and well-protected. When Stormwind started rebuilding, Thenia had started rebuilding, too. Everything she'd done for her daughter (and three summers later, her daughters), she'd done with an eye to the future. She'd made the best choices she could with what little she had, even when the girls didn't like the outcomes. She'd never learned to stop making their decisions for them, either, and that's where things broke down.



Bricu Bittertongue had been her finest. She'd only meant to have one last fling, one last dance before Thenia sold her off to some merchant. But bollocks ta marriage had become Threnny, will yeh? and she'd found that yes, actually, she would. They loved each other fiercely and full. They were content without being complacent. She'd stayed by his side while he kicked the drink and he'd sat vigil when the druid stole her into the Dream. They were a Northern man and a Southron woman, a jeweler and a blacksmith, an instigator and a peacemaker (though sometimes that went the other way 'round), husband and wife, father and mother, worshipers of the old gods and the Light, the fox and the wolf, and the loves of one anothers' lives.

The Riders had been her finest. It didn't matter who or when or how grievous the wound. She'd gone to the lines with them, whether those lines were on a battlefield or in the quiet corner of the Pig. They'd faced death together at the Wrathgate and gone into the heart of the Citadel. She'd kept them standing -- herself and Aely and Shad and Andrick Kaleigh -- and they'd all come in from the cold.

Tirion Fordring had been her finest. To Threnn, the Highlord of the Argent Crusade was the embodiment of the Three Virtues. She'd answered his call in Northrend, just like thousands of others. When they'd made that last, desperate push at the Citadel, Fordring was at the head of the force, his voice booming orders over the chaos. There might have been a hundred men between Threnn and Fordring in the chain of command, but she could say she'd been proud to serve under one of the greatest men of their age.



Bricu had been her last, just that morning. He'd woken her while their house in the Hills was still quiet, before their daughter and their young houseguests began to stir. They'd tried their damnedest to keep to quiet gasps and near-inaudible murmurs, but that only set them both to snickering. After, he'd gone downstairs to start the scones and she'd lazed about in bed a few moments longer, thinking that of all the dances Bricu'd taught her over the years, this would always be her favorite.

Naiara had been her last. She'd hit the age where everything was for climbing on: chairs, wagons, people. This time, it was the bar at the Pig. One minute, Naiara'd been merrily drawing what Threnn suspected was Lark and Pitch and making up a story. The next, Threnn realized how suddenly quiet it was, and when she'd looked up, there was her daughter, teetering on the edge of the bar. Someone had left a chair up against it, and Naiara had spied the opportunity. Reese Langston had startled her when he emerged from the kitchen, and the toddler lost her footing. It wasn't bad, as childhood wounds went -- skinned knees, grazed palms, crocodile tears. Reese was probably more upset than either of the Bittertongues, to tell the truth. But the plan had been to visit Thenia and Padraig that afternoon, and scabbed knees always caused such a fuss. So she'd winked at her daughter, said, "Don’t tell Gran," and after she'd kissed it better, the Light finished the job.

She was her last, she supposed, though truly it was more of a committee. Tarquin gave the orders in the end, but he'd entrusted herself and Bricu, Chryssy and Ulth and Del with their own shares of the responsibility. She remembered a long-ago conversation with him, just the two of them on an empty road in Winterspring, and the haggardness in his eyes as he'd told her about the man who'd led the Greymanes. What if I fuck it all up, Threnny? What if I'm no better than him? The answer had come easy enough: That's why you have us to argue with you. He'd nodded, closed his eyes and leaned back, the worry lessening. And that's when she'd known she'd follow him as long as he cared to lead.

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Illithias
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Illithias » Mon Sep 12, 2011 6:20 am

She hadn't had a first. Not by the way the rest of people seemed to count it by. She was certain they talked about it behind her back, laughing at her immature inexperience. There'd been boys, sure; before the War she collected infatuations every few winters, other young elves never quite as gangly and as awkward as she was. It hardly mattered, the young obsessions never eventuated into anything. In the least, they always seemed more interested in her sister, the young, confident sentinel-to-be. Illithias didn't imagine this changing for a number of decades.

Her first wasn't impressive. They'd been caught in their homes, when they likely should've been fleeing up the mountain. Maybe it would've done no difference. Chaotic was probably the best way to describe it. There was fire in the sky, screaming all around. The trees were dying about them. Scourge and demon both ran rampant, as elves attempted to flee the onslaught. She wasn't sure what had grabbed her. She couldn't see too much; there was blood and dirt and far too many tears in her eyes. It clawed and pawed at her, whatever it was - she felt it's fingers in her mouth. She bit down hard. She choked and coughed on a finger. She pushed and she screamed and and she twisted and she scrambled. Her arms felt cold and leaden; strips of flesh hung free. She wasn't sure what had really happened after this vague recollection, even if she'd killed it or not. All she knew was that she wasn't dead.

He'd been there from the beginning, so of course he'd been the first. She was more his daughter than her mother's, which seemed to suit both equally. A family of botanists since long before the Sundering, Illithias arrived into the family with the purpose on continuing the family business, as it were. Their lineage hadn't always produced the greatest or most knowledgeable of their science, but counted themselves amongst one of the longest. She certainly didn't appreciate it at the time. He had been a strict teacher, but eternally patient - which had been ideal, considering the young elf's predisposition to frustrated tantrums. Still, he had taught well and Illithias had learnt much. All that was left of Thelonas Ashbough now was a battered treatise on Ashenvale plantlife, and a letter to his daughter reminding her not to be angry all the time.



Her finest? Well, she didn't have much to go by. She supposed it'd have to be the damned Northman, that day in the Pig. She couldn't even remember what it had been about; they'd been arguing and bickering back and forth all day, as were their habit. The older human had gotten up to leave - although they'd probably seen the same number of winters - and had passed behind Illithias' chair. She'd stood up, suddenly, to a brief chorus of sharp breaths, whitened knuckles, and rising tension. She'd originally thought she was jumping to her feet to punch him; that was what everyone else had been expecting. But to her surprise, and everyone else's, she instead shoved him back against the wall. One hand pinned a wrist to the wall as she leant forward, searching for his mouth with her own. She had no idea what she was doing. The with the same suddenness, she pushed him back on his way towards the door, turned back to the table, and dropped back into her chair. The entire tavern was silent. She merely snarled her ruined lip and said; "What?"

This was difficult to say also, but for the opposite reason; there'd been so many. The last decade had been spent drenched in blood - Illithias had a natural aptitude for violence. And enough luck to have stayed alive, despite a few near misses. She defined herself by her ability to kill. She'd burnt down a tavern in plagued village in Lordaeron, pack of cultists still locked inside. She'd fought within the choking darkness of Blackrock Mountain, killing a black drake by herself by tearing it's lower jaw clear off its skull. She'd fought in campaigns as both an irregular and mercenary proper; against the Forsaken in the Arathi conflicts, the reopening of the Scarab Gate, the re-entry into Draenor. She'd tried to fight until she died at the Wrathgate, she'd fought the orcish incursions into Ashenvale with an offended ferocity. She'd assisted the assault on the Bloody Prince's citadel, and had slain a necromancer Lord when she force-fed the shattered bones of his former minions down his throat until he moved no longer. Still, there was one fight her memories drifted back to when it was dark and quite and she was alone; a small ruined village in what was now the Felwood, she'd cut her way through demons and cultists until she made her way deep underground, finding the dreadlord who'd made the ruins it's home. Illithias hadn't fought it with weapons - she attacked it bare-handed. It had been sent back to the Nether, half an hour later, when the elf had torn it's head in two as it babbled pleadingly to her. She always grinned when she thought about this.

They hadn't started off on the best foot. She was an angry, xenophobic elven berserker. He was, well, to begin with, a human. That didn't endear him to her. He was as brusque as she was, and she didn't take very kindly to that, either. Over the years they had known each other, they fought constantly - He was more then eager to bait her, and Illithias never not responded. Still, things had changed when the Northron had learned of the elf's own history, realising both were war orphans. Illithias was just younger, and less adept at dealing with that. Their situation had changed from that point, albeit not entirely from Illithias' own volition. It had not happened quickly, but over time the elf started referring to him as Bittertongue, rather than "human", and eventually Bricu. Similar in conflict, they ended closer in friendship - Illithias using him to help herself become more integrated in their world outside of constant blood and fighting. The man looked after her, stood up for her, and became what Illithias imagined if she had the misfortune to had been born a human, would have been her father.




Her last? Weren't much to speak of, really. Still as inexperienced as she had always been, that part of her life seemed to be a mix of idle infatuation, confused self-doubt, recriminations and self-loathing, and almost willful ignorance. She wasn't interested in women, and men weren't interested in her. She didn't know why. Well, she did of course - her face wasn't pretty to look at, what was left, and she was young, violent, emotional, impulsive. All qualities not endearing in a women to most men, truth be told. At least that's what she told herself to rationalise her "failings". She'd been told by others that those weren't "problems", but she just didn't know what was wrong with herself anymore.

It had been raining in Ashenvale; Illithias had been on the road for close to a week now, having riden south-east from Astranaar. She'd been creeping through the undergrowth in the half-light just before dawn - now was the time. The flickering light of half-estinguished campfires dances in the droplets in the trees ringing the lumber camp. The only discernable noise was the sussurating chorus of the night animals. The guard had been leaning against a young tree, his shield and scabbard hanging from the crook of her elbow. He wasn't paying much attention. He could've been any orc, young or old, with a family or without, with a good or bad name and heart. Illithias didn't think about this as her long knife entered the small of the orc's back, and just out again behind his collarbone. The orc coughed slightly in surprise. Illithias wrenched the knife handle in a quarter-turn with a snarl. No orc was left alive in the lumber camp.

Who guided her nowadays? It was difficult to say. She drifted from one influence to the other, with varying degrees of effectiveness and longevity. She claimed allegiance to the Black and Red, sure, and even referred to ap Danwiryth as "Boss" when she felt the loyalty enough. She was nominally still a member of the Alliance military, occasionally working for Stormwind and her allies in an official capacity. She travelled back to Kalimdor regularly to work for her people, out of patriotic fervour and a desire to feel more akin to her own kin. She listened to what the tiny woman had to say, when she wasn't around the druid and the wolf, but felt more incidental to that as time wore on. She'd worked for the Circle, the Crusade, the Ring, various Flights. In truth, she was sailing rudderless, looking for the next who'd be able to give some direction to her life - or at least point her in the direction of the next enemies she was to kill.
I am become Illithias, Destroyer of Worlds.

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Shaurria
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Shaurria » Wed Sep 14, 2011 12:31 am

His first? That one was still to come, if it ever did. But aside from that... he supposed that like most small boys, his first had been his mother. She had been a worse disciplinarian than his father at times, but she had balanced that with a selfless devotion to her family. When his father was killed, she had set aside her own grief to see that her son's transition from heir to lord had gone smoothly, and when he had decided to take his father's place on the battlefield against the worgen, she had supported him despite her fears. It was no wonder that he had worshiped her. Learning of her death hadn't started him on his downward spiral- that had already begun- but it had certainly sped him on his way.

His first had been a wild worgen in the streets of Gilneas City, pursuing a civilian across the square where Rheugan had been posted. He had called up the first of the attack spells Celestine had taught him, a blast of nature energy that had knocked it off its feet, then run in and set to work with his club until it had stopped moving. Once he was sure it wouldn't be getting back up, he had promptly and thoroughly lost the contents of his stomach. When that was over, he'd wiped his mouth, then gone to look for the next invader.

His first had been his father, latest in the surprisingly short line of Jamestons that had clawed their way up the social ladder from sheep-farmers to titled nobility. He had taught Rheugan the things that all good fathers teach their sons: treating others with respect, the value of hard work, and never giving up on the things you wanted. When the worgen first attacked, he'd shown Rheugan too that there were some things that were worth any sacrifice.



Shaurria was his finest, though he feared that others would get the wrong ideas about their friendship. When Pitch had first introduced them, he had expected yet another person that would shy away because he was cursed, or drill him with questions of "What is it like?" Instead, she had shown him an acceptance so complete that it boggled him. Her friendship was something he had needed desperately, and he hadn't even known it until it was there in front of him. He knew she would never be "his", not in that way, but it didn't matter. What did matter was that when his inner darkness threatened to overwhelm him, she helped him to remember he was still human.

His finest had been the Banthar in Nagrand. Pitting himself against that beast had seemed like suicide, but Pitch thought he could do it, so he'd tried. He probably wouldn't have survived it, either, if it hadn't been for the cat. When he'd finally gotten to its throat and it had collapsed, nearly crushing him in the process, the adrenaline rush had made him giddy. It was only later, when Stormwind was quiet and everyone else had been asleep, that he had realized just how strong he'd gotten... and how much a danger he now was.

If anyone asked him, he would say that Prince Liam had been his finest. He had been proud to serve his Prince, first against the worgen and later against the Forsaken. But in reality his finest was the creature that stalked the shadows in his mind. Yes, the wolf had been his finest, and he knew full well what people would think if he admitted it. It had driven him mercilessly, through heat, rain or snow, to commit unspeakable violence to innocent people, to slake it's unnatural thirst for blood and pain. But it had also forced a will stronger than iron on him, and when the time came that he could look into the wolf's eye and tell it "No," the thought that it had helped shape its own downfall was only fitting.



Kyraine had been his last, and he would die before he ever let her find out. They had nothing in common except their homeland and the curse, and besides, she had her own problems to deal with, without being saddled with his as well. But she had gone out of her way to be kind to him, and for a lonely young man that felt at times to be very much still a boy, that had been enough to start entertaining thoughts of "What if." He had never said anything, never let it show, because what was the point? Nothing would come of it, and before long those thoughts had been swallowed by his larger issues, just as he had expected.

A ghoul outside Wintergarde Keep had been his last, little more than a few ribbons of flesh draped over bone. It had clawed him as he tore off its head, but he knew he had little to fear from the Plague, even up here. The curse protected him from undeath, and he found it ironic that he had finally found one thing it was good for.

The cat is his last, and would be until his last breath; he was beginning to understand that now. If he'd thought sharing his mind with the wolf was difficult, well, that still hadn't prepared him for what had turned out to be a cold, impassive predator. He still wasn't sure if they could work things out between them, if they could learn to be allies instead of enemies. The best Rheugan could hope for at this point was to hang onto the last remaining shreds of his dignity, and when the final hunt ended in the unseen future, he could at least die as a man, and not a beast.
Will you carry me down the aisle that final day
With your tears and cold hands shaking from the weight
When you lower me down beneath that sky of gray
Let the rain fall down and wash away your pain

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Kost
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Kost » Thu Oct 06, 2011 6:01 pm

Kost

It was the Harvest Festival, when the fires burnt low and the last of the drink was reaching the bottom of the bottles and she was in her sixteenth year, birthday passed by mere days. It had been one of the boys from the Mill, one with the hair like golden grain and a lazy smile that always made her heart leap into her throat and made her mind go so delightfully fuzzy, but weren't they all like that? Confident in their idle days of youth, it was that confidence that served as such an enticing bait to sneak away from the celebration proper at the slurred offer that made its way to her ear as he leaned against her, stealing the cup from her shaking hands. A pile of hay in the back of one of the barns, slurring and giggled whispers of silly meaningless words, rushing hands between them both, frantic and sloppy and chaotic and just so... perfect.

He shouldn't have done it. Embarrass her like that, in front of them all. How could he? They were twins, equals - and yet it didn't phase her brother to wound her so quickly and deeply just for the sake of impressing some empty headed chit. It was their fault, the girl turned him against her and he gladly took up the mantle of betrayer. They were likely laughing about it right now, laughing about how clever they were. She hated people who thought they were so clever in their cruelty, it only inspired her worst. The girl had given her Prayce a puppy from some mangy cur from her farm, a worthless mongrel from an equally worthless bitch. It was only right that she follow her father's opinion on bad breeding stock - put it down before it spreads. The dog was the harder of the pair, yelping and screaming until the bitter end when it succumbed to the flames - the girl - all it took was a push for her to find out how deep the well on her farm truly was. The large flat stone that followed her down afterwards was merely spite. She didn't deserve to come back up pretty.

Enimos Tiberius Thornwood. Book-mender and warlock. Her father had taught her everything. Binding books and binding demons. Bargaining with merchants and bargaining with those that accepted a different sort of currency. Every risk and every benefit, and to measure every single step before action was ever to be had. He was patient and unforgiving, more than ready to tear her down with a careful selection of words and bring her back up with an approving nod, or soft pat on the head. Knowledge was indeed the finest thing to have in life, and the competition he inspired between her and her brother left her burning for further improvement. He told them everything of the world he knew, his failures and his successful conquests, his dreams and aspirations that he would live vicariously through them. It was a shame he sent her away before they hung him for crimes against the Kingdom, she wanted to know what that too was like.



Percival Carthborne. The paladin, her paladin, her handsome, cunning and very much dead, Percival. He had brought out the best in her, and she brought out the worst in him. It wasn't a simple convenience of having the other around, it was something more, beyond something appreciated to fill the quiet and empty hours, dare she even say it, there was love in the strange whirlwind that was their lives.

The harlot was her finest and yet her hardest. It always was a hard death, when one is filled with the fight to live, to survive. A rival, a fellow warlock, one of the circle and one who had the audacity to take what wasn't hers to begin with, to strike out at her in the city proper, to ruin all of her carefully laid lies and hard earned happiness. It would have been an honor to burn her to cinders for that alone, and yet, she didn't even have the satisfaction of such a thing, no, that final killing blow came about from the Priest and his companions under the guise of that tried and true and equally silly noble cause - let us play the heroes. The price being a well loved but completely unfaithful husband in the end. There was no greater reward. Having other people do your dirty work for you.

The finest had been her Grandmere, a grim willowy woman tucked away in the deep forests of what is now Duskwood, the poor widow mourning the death of another husband and now her poor, poor son. Bending with anything set against her, standing firm upon each storm brought against her. And oh how there were many, as regular as the summer storms, rumors, always rumors from those of town, complaints of how she conducted her business with a cold ruthlessness. Fitting for a frost mage. She was the one that taught her now, how to offer one mask to the world while hiding away her true face. When to use a gentle hand or a much... harder... approach to her solutions. She showed her the promising and bright city of Stormwind, leaving her hungry to join the ranks of those in their everyday plans. Grandmere never saw the noose, nor the fruit of her own hard labor and woven plans. Instead a quiet and lonely end found her in the middle of the night, leaving her alone once more.



It was raining the last time they had been together, she had curled up against his chest and listened as Ren slept, content in knowing they had exhausted each other fairly well. It was strange, their relationship, but it worked. For all of her worst, he remained, questioning, but never judging. For all his faith, she never doubted. She missed that comfort and peace, and loathed how empty their home was each time he left.

The cultists had it right in part. In the end, its best that they burn. Ashes don't make accusations. Ashes don't betray. Ashes don't commonly get back up. Ashes don't look for revenge. Thomas had lain out the screaming man with a final swing of his axe, relocating what remained of his innards to the outside, the ones that weren't already twisted and corrupted with the curses lain upon him in her fury. He screamed threats, oaths to his masters of flame and destruction, now he screamed like a rabbit. Her blackened hands twisted as she chanted, calling for fel fire, a quick immolation spell would consume the rest for the hot breeze to carry away and she could resume her business in peace.

She was her own master now, finest of them all for the sake of pride, as amusing it was to run the length under the guidance of the gnome and his Academy. No longer. She was her own keeper. Not her demons. Not her madness. Her. It was a joy to go along merely by sheer whim for once in her life, to see with such clarity. Her livelihood, her family, her home, all her own. There would be no others. Pity to the those that would try to take any of that away from her again.
Not being able to govern events, I govern myself.

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Loreli
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Loreli » Tue Nov 08, 2011 1:32 am

((So in the interest of NOT hijacking this thread, I'll just link you to the first part of mine http://www.aodstudios.com/motives/ and post updates to my art thread! Enjoy!))
"A little extra DPS never killed anyon... Oh wait."
"Still alive, I see. Clearly you're not trying hard enough."

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Aelflaed
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Aelflaed » Thu Nov 10, 2011 1:49 am

Lars was her first, the man from whom she got her hair and her temper, who taught her to tell stories. Though he was often tired, and his hands were always stained with ore, his green eyes had twinkled when he told her of the Old Man in the Willow and the Woman With the Ribbon Necklace - scaring them just enough, but never so much they doubted he could take care of them. He was so patient too, with his children, warm and funny and accepting that he had a rough and tumble daughter who was only going to leave their life and go on to other things. She’d known how much it had hurt when she left, but also known how proud he was of her vows and her Order.

Bertrand was her first, more best friend than lover, on the last evening before she left to begin training. They’d denied each other for so long, pretending, but when faced with the possibility of never seeing each other again, all pretense fell away. It was a sweet sort of thing, and clumsy, but understood as a tie they could make to each other. They’d promised to write, and had for awhile, but then the war had happened. They had both been sixteen..

Commander Bethany Newsom was her first, a little bulldog of a woman who taught her the necessity of following orders and the ability to answer in her head silently before answering with words. She was a difficult woman to follow, but a fair one, if slow to praise and quick to punishment. Steely resolve was her specialty, and she evoked it in all of her trainees - a skill that came back to save all of them later, when the war had begun and nobody knew where to turn other than to their own strength.

Brother Olfric was her first, a man who taught her both the proper way to pray and the proper way to love and heal the people who needed her. Healing of the heart and healing of the body and healing of the soul - the Light could provide all of those things, and who better than a village priest with a heart as big as his church to slowly mold a redheaded spitfire of a girl into a young woman with a dream of taking orders in the Silver Hand.

*****

There was no finest. You couldn’t make her choose between them for any amount of money: the man who gave her breath or the man who brought her from the edge of death. She thought it lucky to have had two such men in her life, who truly cared for her in a way that wasn’t afraid to speak up or challenge, but never did so without reason.

Phileas had been her fastest, if not her finest, the warmth of his brogue and his nimble fingers in her hair, two children of the fallen North, absorbed in passion as though clinging to each other would bring back their homes. The trust had brought both of them face to face with the past, and while he’d been able to face it, she could only run away. The force between them blazed in an all consuming, ever burning sort of way - the way that burned them both out in the end, when there was nothing left but ash to go between. She had no reason to think of it anymore though.

Tirion Fordring was her finest, a man who truly led by example - both kind and unwavering in his pursuit of justice. An exemplar of the Three Virtues, he had taken took a force decimated by the Wrathgate, forged it with the remnants of the Paladins and turned it into the Argent Crusade - a feat of great leadership and foresight. That leadership brought them to the edge of the Citadel, to that last great battle with the fallen Prince of Lordaeron, Aely was proud to be there, to have answered the call with what seemed like it would be her life.

Brother Willhelm and Katherine the Pure were her finest - teaching her to master the demons of her past and turn them into a desire for all that was right and good, to protect the innocent and wring justice from the forces of evil. They had taught her to take people as they were, and to teach each at their own level, and to never, ever give up. Their patience with her drunkenness was legendary, if augmented with appropriate punishment, and through them she came back from the brink of sanity - stronger, more devoted, and more balanced in her pursuit of her art.

*****

Jolstraer was her last, a grumpy, coarse old man in Lordaeron colors who spoke profanity with the fluidity of a native tongue. The rasp in his chest was heartbreaking, but not as much as the fact that he’d asked her to be there for him, in the end. To do the rites and send him to the halls of his fathers. She’d remembered what it was to be a daughter of the North that day, and every day since, and hoped she’d made him proud.

Arrens was her last, and really her finest as well, as they’d both learned to love and trust again, two hearts solid enough to live with and around each other, and delight in their togetherness. He’d seen her at the edge of breaking after Icecrown, and she’d brought him back from the Twisting Nether, and the ties between them were tangible and real. She’d found in him a partner - someone with whom she could live and breathe and raise a family. A man with whom she created home, instead of always longing for it.

Tarquin was her last, a man she called “Boss” instead of “Sir”, and a man whose devotion to his so-called family was unquestionable. She still served for the Crusade, but in these later times it was Tarquin’s leadership, and that of the rest of the Riders, that made more of an impression. It was one thing to give orders, and one thing to really and truly care about those orders and the people carrying it out, and she knew the difference when she saw it.

And here she was at last, with a Squire in the Crusade, a position as the head of an Infirmary, and a whole batch of new recruits to train in battlefield healing. It was odd to think of herself as a teacher, a mentor, a spiritual leader of sorts - but really, what else was she? Her work was her life, the Light so much a part of her being that she felt it in the very fibers of her being. She had, after all these years, turned into the Paladin she had once set out to be - if, perhaps, by a different route than originally intended.
[5.OOC] Beltar: Hammer of What The Fuck Were You Thinking

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Shaurria
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Shaurria » Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:45 am

((Still working on Lark's. I think I have too many characters...))

His first was one Elliea Whispertree, not Jaryla as his family commonly thought. It was on one of their numerous pilgrimages to visit the World Tree Nordrassil, when they had camped for the night and she had lured him away into the surrounding forest. It had been quick, quiet, and fairly pleasant, and then promptly forgotten by both parties once they were back among the other Kaldorei. He'd told Jaryla what happened, of course- they told each other everything- but allowed everyone else to remain in their ignorance. He'd lost track of what happened to Elliea, but thought that she was most likely dead by now.

His first happened while he was still little more than a stripling just out of training, as unexpected as it was difficult. He and his companions had been tracking a rogue band of satyrs and come across where the demons had found a camp of lumberers. The lone survivor was found in a collapsed tent. He was unresponsive, gone out of his mind after seeing his friends tortured and murdered in front of him. The others gave him up as a lost cause, yet Alanon had stayed with the man as the rest tracked down and dispatched the satyrs. Healing the man's physical injuries was simple enough; healing the wounds to his spirit proved nearly impossible. But three days later, when his companions returned to find the man still grieving but sane, the looks on their faces was all he needed to know that he'd found his life's calling.

His first had been names out of legend- Cenarius, Ysera, Malfurion. Alanon was just one druidic student among many, trying to learn all he could as fast as he could. He'd thought at first that his path was forced upon him, because males simply did not become priests, but it didn't take him long to realize that being a druid was everything that he could ever want and more. He had devoted the rest of his life to simply do the best he could to make those teachers proud.



Jaryla Shadowleaf was his finest, no doubt. Too alike in some ways and too different in others, they weren't suited to be mates or lovers- but they managed to take being "just friends" and turn it into an art form. Their travels took them worlds apart at times, but that never bothered either of them. They knew that home was waiting whenever they next met.

There were many that he could consider his finest, but he would choose Shaurria by virtue of being his most recent. She was already on her way to healing when he arrived, but he saw no problems in helping the process along. Now, whenever he watched the once-shy youngster unshift to speak to a total stranger... when he saw her smile or heard her bright laughter... whenever she called him An'da... he knew that whatever anyone else might say, he'd done a fine job with her.

His finest was hard to define. It spoke to him through the wind in the trees; it whispered to him in the grasses. At times it would shout at him through the storm's thunder, or the rumble of the earth below. It could be called Nature, that's what most people would name it as anyway. He preferred to simply call it Balance.



His last had been Arien in a stolen moment when Kal had been late to come home. He knew full well what it meant for a Kaldorei to love a human- he'd seen it already too many times to count. But she filled the empty places in him that nothing else could touch, and he knew that no matter when she was taken from him- or he from her, which was after all just as likely- he could truthfully say that he had no regrets.

His last was technically still a work in progress, but Alanon felt sure that the worgen Rheugan would find his full healing in time. Yet another youngster thrown into a war before he was ready, he had been a challenge every moment Alanon had spent with him. The scars were there, some likely permanent, but Alanon knew he would not give up. Healing was in his blood- physical, spiritual, psychological, they were all the same to him.

His last was his first, his finest, and his only. The thrum of life that filled and surrounded every living being, the balance that kept them all moving smoothly through this universe. After ten thousand years he was still going strong, and he had every intention of serving the world's balance, to the very best of his ability, until the last breath was gone from his body.
Will you carry me down the aisle that final day
With your tears and cold hands shaking from the weight
When you lower me down beneath that sky of gray
Let the rain fall down and wash away your pain

Bricu
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Bricu » Mon Nov 05, 2012 4:51 pm

His first was Deirde. Or Deirdu. Or D. He wasn’t sure. He was fourteen, she couldn’t have been much older than fifteen. They were both street rats in Lordaeron. He was lucky enough to have a place to sleep and at least one meal a day. D had to depend on the kindness of others, and Lordaeron City was not a kind place to live. He was clever and gangly and ginger. She was dark haired and light eyed, and far too knowledgeable in the way the world worked. Still, a few short weeks before he joined King Terenas’ Army, he was the happiest bastard in Light’s Hope. She was the second to know he enlisted. She was the first to break his heart. He had nicked enough silver for a meal and night in an Inn far away from the orphanage, the foundries and the dirt of the lower city. She had the meal and left, arm in arm, with a watchman who arrived just as after he confessed his love. That night, in a bed far too big for one gangly boy, he spent his first night alone.

Threnn was his finest. She was supposed to be a tryst, a fling, another notch to brag about while slurring drunk and fighting with some poncey Southron City Watchman. Yet they spent one night talking and kissing in front her parents shop, and by the morning something had changed. It wasn’t love--not yet at least--but Bricu was not about to let someone who had made him feel so damn good slip through his fingers. So he courted a warrior woman, almost with her father’s blessing, and learned that there were finer things in this world than wines and whiskys.

Naiara was his last. She was the last girl he would ever love, the last person for whom he would do whatever it takes to keep safe, the last whose opinion mattered. Naiara was the best of both of her parents. She was adorable, difficult and too clever by half. Bricu would make sure that she would want for nothing, that she would be cared for regardless of what happened to him, and that she would have all the benefits he had to fight and steal for.

His first was Terenas. He never saw His Royal Majesty, King Terenas Menethil I, except on a parade ground, but it was this king he pledged to protect. His king had many voices: Sergeants, Lieutenants, Generals and Princes, but they all spoke with his authority. Bricu was given the right to use King’s name when training recruits and issuing orders. It was Terenas’ name on his lips when he walked into Stratholme, and it was in Terenas’ name that he put his friends and family to the sword when the plague came.

Tarquin was his finest. He found Bricu in the pig, three sheets to the wind, and asked him about joining his crew. Gallons of cherry grog later, Bricu was in the colors, despite swearing up and down he’d not serve another living creature for the rest of his life. At first, he followed the scarecrow man out of guilt. Maybe friendship played a role, maybe it was just the idea of finding the last few Northman who weren’t swearing vengeance on this or undying loyalty to that. In the end, it didn’t matter. The man they couldn’t hang could lead a crew of misbegotten bastards and make them something more than cut-throats. This was the finest.

The Bloody Prince was his last. He was his Prince, his liege, chief and commander. He was also his betrayer, the one who ordered the slaughter of his homeland. He was the last one of noble blood that could inspire anything in him, and now, he was gone, brought low by many--and by Bricu's own hand. There would never be another king of Northern Blood, and there would never be another person of royal blood he would swear fealty too.

Teigue was his first. He hoped she died at Stratholme with her mother, her father, her friend and most of her family. She wasn’t among those people--he knew because he killed them the night Stratholme was set on fire--but still he hoped that she found some sort of peace away from the burning city. But she survived. And she remembered. She remembered how he promised to come back for her, how he promised to hang up his sword and run the bar. She remembered how he swore to keep the city--truly, all of Lordaeron--safe. Teigue counted each betrayal, each broken promise, and she held onto each of themthem, waiting to get her revenge.

Tundale’s was his finest. Not only did Tundale idolize him, he followed in Bricu footsteps. But where Bricu enlisted and fled to the bottle, his army was the Scarlet Crusade, and he joyfully took up the call to punish all of those who did not take their vows. Tundale found him, years later, at Light’s Hope Chapel. Tundale trapped and nearly killed him. But Bricu planned for his capture and waited, patiently, to kill the first person who ever trusted him. And he did so without remorse.

Threnn was his last. He had betrayed far more people when he fell off the wagon, but she was the last one he wanted to hurt. And she was probably the one hurt the most by his cowardice. By his selfishness. By his relapse. By the same token, Threnn was the last to give up on him. Whereas others turned their backs or balled their fists, she took his betrayal in stride. When he fell, she not only helped him to his feet, but brushed him off and propped him up. She did so not due to obligation, guilt or malice, but from concern and love. This only made his last betrayal all the more painful.
I drink to keep you pretty
--
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Shaurria
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Re: First, Finest and Last

Postby Shaurria » Wed Nov 07, 2012 9:09 pm

His first had cost him five coppers, enough to feed himself for almost a week back then. But compared to his friends’ constant ribbing, he’d considered it worth the price. She’d laughed at him when he asked for her name, and when they were finished she’d called him a man. The only thing he could think of at the time was to wonder why he didn’t feel any different.

He’d bought the knife cheap, though he hadn’t thought he’d need to use it so soon. But Belgren was twice his size and three times his age, and Rill’s life was hard enough without adding a bully to the mix. He’d followed his target for a full day before picking his ambush spot. The knife had slipped as it went in, though, and it had taken nearly an hour for Belgren to die of the messy gut wound. It had taken two more for Rill’s shaking to stop, and then he’d booked it out of his home village for good, before anyone found the body. He’d been all of forty years old.

His first had been the dirt paths of the small transient village where he’d been born, there in the ruins of Morlos’Aran. His mother certainly hadn’t raised him –not that he blamed her, she could barely take care of herself. No, his teachers had been the streets and the surrounding wilds, where a mistake had rarely given a second chance. Rill had learned early on that not making mistakes was the best way to go.


His finest had been Lark, even as brief as it was. She’d lit a fire in him that no one else had before or since. He still didn’t understand why she’d called it off, saying they were both better off as just friends; maybe that was why he kept finding himself following her around like a lost puppy. He told himself frequently that he needed to get over her and move on… but Rill had never been good at listening to reason.

He didn’t consider any of them his finest. He just didn’t think of them that way; killing was just something he did to put money in his pocket and food in his mouth, or to simply survive another day. It wasn’t the kind of thing he bragged about, not if he wanted to keep breathing. And Rill was awfully fond of breathing.

His finest had been the elf that plucked him from the streets of a Hyjal village. Erelas had been looking for an apprentice, and Rill had been looking for anything that would get him out of the hellhole his life had become. Erelas and his hippogryphs had given him that way out, and he’d jumped at the chance without looking back.


His last had cost him considerably more than five coppers, but he hadn’t had to worry about money for a long time. He’d stopped trying to pretend they were Lark years ago – now it was simply a release. This one had been happy enough to take his money, and if he’d left her with a few bonus bruises, well, she hadn’t complained to him.

His last had been a while ago… he supposed it had been that gnome selling flowers. She’d been nothing to him, just another mark taken care of, a job like all the others. He’d lost count of the bodies he’d left over the centuries; all that mattered to him was that they were dead and he still lived. That had to count for something, didn’t it?

He was his last, and he was determined to keep it that way. Sure, he would take orders from whichever slouch currently paid him, but that was strictly business. Outside of work, well, he’d be damned if he’d let anyone else tell him what to do again.
Will you carry me down the aisle that final day
With your tears and cold hands shaking from the weight
When you lower me down beneath that sky of gray
Let the rain fall down and wash away your pain


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