Festival of Lights


Sir Basil

Original poster
The city of Domea. The sparkling white city of all religions, faiths, and creeds. And it was alive with all sorts of people from all sorts of places. There were men from the North with their pale skin and blue eyes, who worshiped darkness. There were men from the South with their brown bodies and black hearts who worshiped money and profit. There were angels, devils, halflings and kobolds, and for the first time in a good long while, things that could have been elves. And they had come from all over the mutli-verse for the Festival of Lights, held every hundred years.
The king was there, the good Emperor of Jord. He had ruled this world for only five years, but showed a wealth of wisdom and charm despite his youth. He had invited nobles from all across the world, heroes from other planes of existence, and watched the festivities. He was young. He wanted everybody to get along. He was king, and this was the first time in a hundred years that these festivities had taken place. He wanted everything to be absolutely perfect. From his high booth far above the crowd, he watched the people and activities with a close eye. He had heard that there were great men and women that he was not even aware of, hidden in the crowd, lost in the wave of people and colours.
Not all was well, at the Festival of Lights, though. There had been men and women disappearing from off the streets. It was as if the ground had swallowed them up. They were all great heroes, too. The magnificent Ursus, who returned to the earth after sacrificing himself to save his battalion. The honourable Sir Raleigh, captain of the King's guard and model knight. The troublesome, but clever Fortenous of Chalice. Aleron of the Libon House. Lord Wolperting of the North. All gone. All swallowed. All disappeared. The king knew little of it, but it filled him with fear. The festival had to go on. They could not stop. And so, on it went...


Aegis Mandubrath hated festivals. They were gaudy and ridiculous, and distracted from what needed to be done, but yet, here he was, infront of a vendor selling what appeared to be icons of the Prophet Taiga Balaika. He scoffed, and folded his arms across his chest. This was the first time anybody had seen the young prince in person since the black cloud had moved over his homeland, Brathis. He was here with Vitesse Kreig, and he wondered what people were saying about that. Vitesse had been partially responsible from the black cloud. He had been at war with Aegis for nearly a year, and here they were, making a public appearance with one another. It was eerie, almost, and flashes of their war and his memories flashed behind Aegis's eyes. He couldn't help it.

He picked up one of the idols, inspecting it slightly, with cool, bored blue eyes. The elven saviour did nothing for him. There was a chapel for his gods here, but of course there was. Domea was the city of all churches. All of the taverns had religious names, and stuffy priests shot nasty looks, depending on what you ordered. He looked through the crowd, trying to find Vitesse,
"We need to book a room for the night," He said flatly.
Thalia Argonothi stood at the mouth of an alleyway. All was not well, indeed. The shadows loomed there, made dense by the absence of torchlight. Cutpurses? Durring such a big festival? How strange... She thought.

She loved this festival, loved seeing all the important people she could not be... She was one once, but she was sent away. She couldn't sit there and just be proper, and so her mother said no more. A commoner, she felt free. She had little coin, and her garb was shabby, to say the least. Why would cutpurses want her?

Well, she was pretty, underneath all the dirt.

Thalia stepped lightly away from the giant maw of the alley way, but it was too late. They were comming for her. Help! she thought, her tongue not working.
A laugh could be heard. "A room?" With a grin and a kind-heartedly mocking tone, Aegis' companion Vitesse gestured around. "It's a festival! It's one great party! The rooms were probably booked in advance. If we're lucky, we might find an alleyway or a street corner that won't be covered in filth and vomit from all the folks around here." Clearly, the man was kidding... he was in bright spirits. It was a particuarly dark day, and the somewhat tense feel of the festival put him right at ease.

Vitesse Krieg, son of the war general and 'leader' of the Kriegheit Kingdom. He had earned his status as one of Kreigheit's 'Storm Lords' at a young age. The man's long ears twitched slightly: the tall Blitztail race was a strange-looking race compared to most. A thin mix of humanoid and kangaroo traits, the ratlike tail of the Blitz split into two at the end. White fur covered his entire body, including his gracefully muzzled face. His clawed, bare feet scraped the ground as he moved.

Truely, the man's muscles were afire - electricty coursing through them in the manner all Storm Lords would... he was itching for a fight. His companion could likely see that. Vitesse's jokes to Aegis would have been in his attempt to conceal the Storm Lord's growing battle-lust. It was strange affliction, though one common to warriors: no thrill but combat gave them the adrenaline he really needed anymore.

He glances over the idols for a bit, "Not one single representation of the Storm. I guess that's what we get for not having a 'real' religion, eh?" He looks to Aegis with a grin. Looking around for a bit, the man comments, "Surely there's a god of strength around here with a fighting temple or something? I really have to hit something. It's been ages since we left the war behind."
Elise Stargazer stuck to the alleys just waiting for someone to near. Her hooded black cloak hid not only her hair but most of her face as well. She had daggers hidden in both her boots, and a small pouch clung to her belt to hold the jewels and coin she might steal tonight. She breathed not a word, silent in the shadows, hoping some of the richer would come by her so that she may snag a loose coin purse or piece of jewelry to be sold elsewhere.

Her life had not always been so hard. She had not always resorted to stealing to survive. But desperate times called for desperate measures and a girl had to eat. She hated the way her hood tugged at her elongated ears. But the less people saw of her the less they would recognize and be able to tell the authorities. She had heard of the disappearances and thanked the gods she had nothing to do with it and that the earth hadn't swallowed her whole....yet.

She skulked through the back alleys, watching her shiny prey, almost hypnotized by it. She smiled to herself when she heard the two men talking about possibly sleeping where she crept. It would only make things easier for her. She decided they would be her first targets. She would bide her time until they were least expecting it.
Aegis shrugged his shoulders. The knight was known for his stoic-nature, and not many expressions fluttered across his face, but when he was with Vitesse, he couldn't help but let a smile creep up his lips. He glanced around the festival, and realized that there weren't any clerics of Storm within seeing distance, or within earshot. The tended to crackle as they stepped, and the lack of the sound was somewhat perplexing. Aegis narrowed his blue eyes. This was supposed to be a festival of all religions, of all faiths. He looked over at his companion. He saw the energy coursing through his skin and fur. He knew that look. That was the look he had seen when Vitesse appeared on the battleground - his face and skin afire as Aegis drifted down from the hills of Brathis. He remembered a lot of things being simpler in the war times. He knew who his enemies were. He knew who he loved. His thoughts were interrupted by a large solider jostling him to the side. Aegis was a pretty well grounded fellow, despite his nation's history and professions, but he tripped over to his compatriot a little, before re-adjusting the distance between them. Two feet between them at all times.

"Saint Justicine is who you'll probably want to see." He shrugs his shoulders, "She's the Imperial's major deity, of strength and justice and all that." He shrugs his shoulders, "The Birds of Brathis, my faith... One of them is more strength based, but there's no cleric of him here." He runs his dark blue eyes over Vitesse, "Perhaps you are the representative of Storm, eh?"

Aegis continued to walk along, watching the crowd. There were many rogues and vagabonds, and that made him anxious. His stomach felt tight. He was not interested in the sneaky and underhanded, but there certainly were a lot of them. He would keep his eyes on them. He said flatly into the air of the festival,
"I suppose I'm the first Brathian in Domea for some time."
Elise was careful to stay just out of sight, more cautious now that she knew at least one of the two men were watching their backs. She tilted her head to the side as she heard the comment of one being a Brathian. She had heard of the kingdom of Brathis and the rumors that came along with it. There were many speculations as to what caused the black cloud over the kingdom but she wondered how many were even the slightest bit true. It was mostly the bards over exaggerating she thought. She had never been there in person.

She maneuvered herself to be behind the men, a few feet behind them but still off to the side. She would wait for a distraction. And she knew one would come. This was a festival after all. Lots of people, lots of stuff to see....lots of stuff to steal. If she played her cards right she wouldn't ever have to do this again. It all depended on how much she got this day. She hoped it would be enough.

Her ever watchful gaze surveyed everyone around her but stuck mainly to her targets as she slowly closed the gap between her and her prize. She looked over the men to see which would likely have the easier coin purse or piece of jewelry to take. She was now a mere three feet behind them to the side of the alleyways.
Cid Walk through the crowds of the fesitval, his white cape, trimmed with a crimson boarder that matched the crimson alchemic symbol for asteroid in the middle, blew slightly with the small breeze. He was tired and dirty from his long continuious jounrey. Dirt had clung to every piece of clothing he was wearing, what was once extravagant white shirt was paled and needed a good washing. He looked down to assess his pants and belt and of course they to were in need to be cleaned; the pants matched his shirt and the red belt was faded. Cid didn't dare look at his crimson boots for fear they were the worst of all.

He walked onward, his sword Fenris clancking at his side. Cid ran his gloved hand through his short raven black hair, That man has to be somewhere in here, the entire country is here. I must find him. Cid fingered at Fenris (a beautiful straight-edged katana with a blade of emerald green and black hilt and sheath that both had thin threads of emerald spiraling around them) while he thought.
Mason Raeso swept his long black jacket back, his hand drifting into his small dagger as he walked lithely through the crowd. He had a masquerade mask covering his face, Long hair covering pointed ears, and he preferred that it stay that way. He looked at the alleys that lined the edge of the festival, and started towards them. He did NOT want to be there, and since his date was now drinking and dancing with another man, he had no reason to be there.
He stopped, though, looking at the woman at the mouth of one of the smaller, darker alleyways. She seemed scared, and it peaked his interest. He walked over briskly, standing naught a few feet away from her, "Miss, are you in danger?" He looked into the Alley, emerald eyes shining brightly behind the mask, though they saw nothing through the glass decorative eyepieces.
Stumbling into town after a long day of traveling, Raege almost missed the festival, but suddenly something caught her eye. There was a bard playing a small flute, watched by nobody in particular. His music was being drowned out by the rowdy shouts of men who had been drinking all day. As Raege walked closer, a festival worker walked up to her, wordlessly, and handed over a leaflet.
"The festival of lights? I've never heard of it." But as she turned, waiting for a response, Raege noticed that the lady had walked away.
She pushed her way through the crowds of men, hoping that the bard was who she thought it was. she couldn't quite see his face from so far away.

It took Raege a while to reach the edge of the stage, but when she did, she looked into the eyes of the bard. He was a scrawny blond haired man, not the bard she had been looking for. She sighed deeply, and turned away before he saw her cry. A tear fell on the crumpled surface of the leaflet. She didn't think she would ever find the bard that she was looking for.

Raege was about to leave the festival when the blond bard approached her.
"Don't cry, you'll find him."
"What?" replied Raege
"The man you're looking for."
"How do you know I am searching for someone?"
"I can see it in your eyes," he replied "You have the look of lost love. Don't give up. You will find him. Was he a bard?"
"Yes," Raege answered "he played the flute better than anyone I have ever known."
"Well why don't you stay here for a while and listen to some of my own flute music. You look like you need a break."
"Thanks," replied Raege, taking a seat close to where the bard was performing. At least she had spoken to someone nice for the first time since she had left home.
"Miss, are you in danger?"

She wanted to scream, of course I'm in danger, you moron, but she couldn't. She steeled herself for a fight, something she'd never done before, turned her head, and hoped the man in the mask could see her next action. Thalia nodded hard. As an after thought she also hoped he wasn't a bad person like these cutpurses.

As the men advanced, she attempted to steady her shaking, empty hands while stepping slowly backwards toward the entrance of the alley. They seemed to come to her quicker than she could back up, at least a full pace faster. Before she knew it they were upon her, and she screamed as she lost her nerve.

She hoped that it'd come out as something intelligable, like 'help' or 'SOS' but all she could say was "AIIIIIIIE." as the first man drew his knife in a quick hip to shoulder arc, cutting at her as it passed out of it's scabbard.
"Miss, I-" He blinked at the approaching men, before ripping his knife from his hip, sliding in front of the woman.

"You have no reason to be here! Be gone, and keep your life!"

He normally didn't get involved in other people's affairs, but this woman was now bleeding. He didn't like blood.