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Cullen Lawrence

"Knowledge is power."

0 · 588 views · located in Fae Realm

a character in “Aes SΓ­dhe”, originally authored by LawfulAnnon, as played by RolePlayGateway

Description

ImageXXXImageXXXXXXXXxxXX C U L L E Nxxxxxxxx
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β—’
β—’β—’ n a m e : xxxcullen lawrence

β—’β—’ a l i a s : xxoracle. xxviatorem. xxvir populus

β—’β—’ h u m a nxxn a m e : xxxgraham hansen

β—’β—’ a g e : xxxthree-hundred fifty-one

β—’β—’ s e x u a l i t y : xxxbisexual

β—’β—’ c o u r t : xxxsummer court

β—’β—’ r o l e : xxxseekerxxxseer

β—’β—’ o c c u p a t i o n : xxxsummer court politician

β—’β—’ p r i m a r yxxp o w e r : xxxpremonition

β—’β—’ s e c o n d a r yxxp o w e r : xxxtelepathy. x fire.

β—’β—’ t h o u g h txxc o l o u r : xxx#FFD700

β—’β—’ d i a l o g u exxc o l o u r : xxx#613800


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━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━you have too much strength in you to be weak


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β—’β—’ a p p e a r a n c e

F i r e xxx and it's many colors have been a mark of Cullen's family. Circular marks dot the bridge of his nose only to part and continue upwards along his eyebrows, ending at the corners of his eyes. The dots begin in a maroon red, changing to orange like that of a fire, and end with a golden yellow. Bronze, swallowtail wings appear along his backside, the tips marred like that of a burn. His hair and body are blessed by the sun as if the sun kissed him. Thick locks, with red and gold highlights, are kept tamed to a short, styled cut resembling a businessman. The morning sky seems trapped in his eyes, bright and wide. With a height envied by the gentleman of his court, Cullen cannot hide nor does he feel the urge to. His facial hair is kept light and maintained.

C u l l e n ' s xxx glamor retains certain elements of his fae form. He keeps his skin tone, eyes, and hair color the same, though he loses the red streaks in his hair as they stand out too much. His facial hair is also remains. Humans have been known to notice him when he is out and about since his human form has been described as attractive. His facial birthmark is removed and replaced by flame tattoos along his upper body, like a necklace. The tips of the flames stick a bit out of his shirt collar; it remains hidden otherwise.

H i s xxx style in his human form varies due to the different clothing styles between faes and humans, but they retain the same look. Classy and sophisticated can often be described as his style. Button ups, suits, and layers are a favorite of his. Casual has never been something he understands, seeing the value in quality clothing. Cullen fancies the eyewear he often sees humans wear. Glasses and sunglasses are common to see him in, only removed when sleeping or during physical tasks.


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━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━only the curious have a tale worth telling


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β—’β—’ p e r s o n a l i t y

D e v e l o p i n g xxx an intelligent mind takes years of nurturing and Cullen has been doing nothing, but that. His brain craves understanding and knowledge of the things around him. The world is a complex machine and everything involved is like the parts making up the machine, all of which he desires to understand. Cullen's mind is constantly looking for new theories and improvements he can make to the world. His head is a place of hiding, and getting lost. Everything is interesting to this fey's mind; he'd gladly avoid the outside world. The outside can be so harsh, his mind has never hurt him.

E n t h u s i a s m xxx is common when talking with Cullen, especially if it's something that he knows of or is passionate about. His attitude is very animated and movement is common with having a simple conversation. The way his eyes light up and his boyish smile endears even the coldest of hearts makes him quite the catch. While his voice is typically only used in his head, he can easily demand attention. The quiet charm of intelligent man draws attention, though he desires to be left alone. Cullen is accustomed to loneliness to the point it doesn't bother him anymore. If he has his books and his thoughts, he needs no one else.

L y i n g xxx is an impossible act among the faes of the court. Everyone likes to bend the truth and manipulate, not Cullen. The very act of being dishonest makes him feel dirty. Deceit has only brought destruction in his life and he refuses to hurt someone like that. That being said, he knows he can't be truthful all the time. It can be very dangerous in his career, and his hobbies. He prefers to omit certain details, finding keeping secrets better than telling lies. Cullen is not naΓ―ve to think that everyone is truthful, but he'd rather be better than the politicians in his court. Emotional consideration is not a strength of his. Situation which require compassion or softness seem odd to him. The concept of being sympathetic is puzzling and a distraction from more important matters.

C u l l e n xxx has one quality that stands out among most of the fey of his court: his open-mindedness. The fey's problems cannot be solved if they don't consider other, maybe less traditional, options. The future is coming and the fey world is behind. Cullen sees himself as a futurist with the way his mind works. He loathes the rules set by the fey society and what is considered 'acceptable.' Cullen's been described as rebel among his family, a classy one. He vows to change the fey world. Yet another reason he can be difficult to work with.


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━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━I think a lot, but I don't say much


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β—’β—’ l i k e s

brainteasers xxx coffee xxx calming music xxx all books xxx apples xxx traveling xxx eyewear xxx helpfulness xxx whiskey xxx learning xxx fast food xxx cheesecake xxx talking about his passions xxx the stars xxx wandering xxx writing xxx rain xxx physical intimacy xxx conspiracies xxx comedy xxx being understood xxx children xxx heights xxx intellectual arguments xxx

β—’β—’ d i s l i k e s

loud people xxx distractions xxx sports xxx being overlooked xxx routine xxx dirty politics xxx boredom xxx vanilla xxx liars xxx corn xxx bullies xxx slavery xxx mouth open chewing xxx drama xxx air fresheners xxx flavored water xxx being silenced xxx parents xxx blind dates xxx laziness xxx messiness xxx mosquitos xxx snakes xxx stupidity xxx


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β—’β—’ s t r e n g t h s

F e a r l e s s xxxgiving into fear only prevents you from going forward. Cullen doesn't let his fears overpower him, choosing to face danger rather than run.

B r a i n p o w e r xxxmentally, Cullen is very strong. he has the ability to think in unconventional ways and a vast knowledge of the many topics.

L e a d e r s h i p xxxthe natural ability to command and inspire a group has always been an odd strength for the normally private genius. he has the keen ability to motivate those around him


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β—’β—’ w e a k n e s s e s

D i s t r a c t e d xxxhis mind craves new ideas and information. Cullen loves to learn and new topics easily catch his attention. he is easily distracted by something he finds interesting, something he deeply hates about himself. it can cause him to abandon important things.

C o n d e s c e n d i n g xxxnot everyone understands how the genius's mind works, leaving explanations to be a bother. Cullen can get frustrated, sometimes simplifying things to the point of insult as he struggles to gauge others’ perspective. He's been known to give up with a dismissive β€œnever mind”.

I n d e c i s i v e xxxCullen works to improve everything around him, often second-guessing himself. unable to settle for this, he will sometimes delay his output indefinitely with constant revisions. it can be dangerous, especially in battle.


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β—’β—’ m a g i cxx&xxequipment

P r i m a r y xxxPremonition gives Cullen the ability to foresee future events, as well as the courses of action that could affect those events. His ability causes him to go into a trance like state when looking into the future. Finding the key event is a bit more challenging, if he knows nothing of the subject, he gets only vague glimpses into the future. Random flashes may occur if the future is effected suddenly, but most of his visions are within his control. His ability causes mental duress, pain depending on how hard he is trying to look. Visions involving him are more easy to read than those involving other people, or a greater amount of people.

S e c o n d a r y xxxWhile not as strong as his primary, Cullen's secondary has proven to be useful. Telepathy allows him to have mental conversation with others. However, he can only do one person at a time and must rest immediately after. He cannot perform this ability back to back or talk with two people at once. Fire is his most dangerous and life draining ability. He has not been able to get it under control, although it only works in limited capacities. He can increase his body heat and generate heat. He's been known to shoot fire from his hands and spark a fire. This ability is rarely used since it costs him so much energy. Use of fire is rare to see.

E q u i p m e n t xxxCullen is never seen without his family's signet ring. While it is typically worn for showmanship, his is enchanted to help with his control of fire manipulation. It also can't be removed by anyone, but himself; removing it would cause his fire abilities to go haywire. He is also the owner of rare pocket journal, which he had commissioned by a High Court fey. The book is never ending, never running out of room to write things, organized by a table of contents. It holds all of his thoughts, knowledge, ideas, and travels. He never goes anywhere without it.


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━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━What the hell am I doing here? I don't belong here


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β—’β—’ h i s t o r y

W a r xxx was the happiest time among their family. It was a time of battle, bloodshed, and the thrill of holding a life within one's hand. Peace was when the breeding of the soldiers of the next generation began. Celeste Mikael was the prize bride among the warriors of the Summer Court. No man was good enough for the intelligent lady, who longed for more from life than being a baby maker. Her family found her a match in Caden Lawrence, one of the most famous and respected fighters in their court. Their arranged marriage promised a higher status for the Mikael family and strong genes for their future children. Celeste bore three boys, like she was supposed to, all of them strong warriors like her husband wanted. All of them were blessed with the gift of flame as their primary ability, a family ability.

T h e i r xxx fourth son was born. He was beautiful. His hair resembled a fire, eyes that seemed to look right through you, and the family birthmark placed elegantly on his face. However, he was a weak baby. The child could not be trained in combat, getting sick if overworked. Caden was angry to have a weak child. The thought of him being a bastard was quickly disproved. Celeste had little access to anyone outside of her sons and husband. Her job was to raise the children and she spent plenty of time with Cullen. She too was disappointed in her newborn son. Fey children have been known to die young. It was a sign of weakness in the gene pool and could've easily made Caden send Celeste away. It was a sad fate for the baby, death or disappointment.

C u l l e n xxx did not die as infant. He became healthier, but his father still knew he would never be a warrior. Young Cullen became accustomed to his father's disappointment. He spent most of his childhood in their families' library. Cullen's older brothers never cared for books, finding them better for burning than reading. Cullen figured if he couldn't beat his brother's in physicality, he could beat them intellectually. It became almost a game for him. He would outwit his brother's often and it was the only time it ever brought a smile to his mother's face. He was just like her, wanting more than to be what he was supposed to be.

L i f e xxx became boring for the intelligent fey. He read all the books in his court, learning from each one. Cullen was ready to learn more than just what his court desired. With his father's permission, Cullen began to travel among the courts. The High court welcomed him, while the Dark and Winter courts were much less cordial. The name Viatorem became well known throughout the courts. Stories of a strange traveler spread, one who sought nothing, but knowledge. Cullen was aware people were watching him and he wasn't trusted. The fey longed to understand the courts, not destroy.

V i a t o r e m xxx eventually ran out of places to travel within the fey realm. There was plenty more to understand, but he grew bored again. Time spent at home between his travels were odd. His brothers still fought with their father while Cullen stayed home with his mother. He helped with the raising of his young siblings. His mother bore three more children during his travels, two sisters and brother. His younger siblings were much more tolerable. They enjoyed receiving trinkets and hearing stories of his travels. Cullen's home also brought a dangerous yet intriguing idea. His family owned several human slaves. Tristan hadn't traveled to the human realm before. It was a taboo thing to travel among the realms, considered an act of treason. Tristan, however, longed to learn more than what the fey world offered.

S n e a k i n g xxx out of the fey realm was no easy task. Tristan enlisted the help of smugglers to get him out of the realm. In exchange, he would use his premonition to see if their smuggling would get them caught. It was a fair trade. Cullen's family was so used to his travels, disappearing for a while was common. His father never cared what he did so no one bothered looking for him. The human realm was magnificent to Cullen. It was so simple and he marveled at their creations. The human were drawn to him, curious of the traveler. Cullen felt accepted by this race of people. He traveled back between the realms whenever he could get away without notice. His travels there were rare, but the most memorable.

U n f o r t u n a t e l y, xxx his days as a traveler ended. His family finally recognized his intelligence. Caden suggested, more demanded, his son get into politics. Cullen despised the idea, knowing the court wasn't for the people. Part of Cullen did long to be the son his father could be proud of and this seemed like the only way. Cullen rose quickly in his political career. Known for his intellect and reputation as an oracle, the people loved him. He earned yet another nickname 'Vir Populus,' meaning man of the people. Cullen wanted to revolutionized the fey world.


T h e xxx number of enemies Cullen gained grew as he gained popularity among the common folk. His abilities made him powerful. He could fight against any new law by using his future seeing, or mentally get someone one his mind without any one knowing. The court wanted to be rid of him, choosing him to be sent on the mission to find Gawain's child. Cullen accepted, knowing it would mean returning to a realm he loved and, if he succeeds, his political power would only grow. The summer court hopes he fails, hating his power. Cullen is ready for his mission and is determined to come back triumphantly.


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c h a r a c t e rxxs h e e txbyxxxlayla
f a c e c l a i mxxxadam gallagher
p l a y e dxxb yxxxlawfulannon

So begins...

Cullen Lawrence's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Orhien Naena Character Portrait: Amaya Kyotsuki Character Portrait: Mariko Kimura Character Portrait: KazimΓ­r Ε Ε₯astnΓ½ Character Portrait: Aurora Kinski Character Portrait: Ryu Se-Ri Character Portrait: Alize MorleaΓΊ Character Portrait: Cullen Lawrence Character Portrait: Kelvin Woods Character Portrait: Petunia Griffin Character Portrait: Illyana BΓ‘rΓ‘ny Character Portrait: Ryu Yeong Character Portrait: Tae Jeong Character Portrait: Lilith Averescu
Tag Characters » Add to Arc »

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▁ β–‚ β–ƒxxxH I G Hxxxxxx ▁ β–‚ β–ƒxxx31/12/17 : 1100xxxxxx▁ β–‚ β–ƒxxxW H E R ExxxW O R L D SxxxC O L L I D E
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xxxxxxThe moon released its cold, blue breath. Her sisters followed; speckles of starlight coming to life across the cold expanse overhead. And like a milky way on earth, the faelights that hovered untethered to mortal devices illuminated a path deep into the woods. Human passersby steered clear of the forest that emanated terror and demise, ushered away by a cleverly crafted glamour.
xxxxxxThose that dared venture into the sprawling canopies and distant shadows would find a mirageβ€”an illusion that broke like water when prodded. And through this unseen wallβ€”magic. For on the final night of every year, exiles and Fey without allegianceβ€”or "freefolk," as was polite to call themβ€”gathered in the fringes of New York City to celebrate the end of the earth's rotation.
xxxxxxThrough the veil were colours unseen by the human eye. Beads of light hung from the branches of ancient trees, their fingertips caressing the tips of faerie wings. A river snaked through the celebrations, spelled to bubble with a thick and cloying liquid of darkest gold.
xxxxxxFey danced to music that swelled like waves and descended in waterfalls. An alluring flute murmured its tune from the fingers of a sylph, urging lost humans to dance their worries away. Until their feet blistered, bled, and broke.
xxxxxxThe couples and groups twirling to the symphony were immune to such temptations, as they, too, had been forged of impossible things. A little blue boy giggled in his mother's arms as she twirled him 'round and 'round, her lips peeling back to reveal small, pointy teeth that could shatter human bones. Another girl blushed, her skin morphing into the emeralds and mahoganies of the trees behind her as if she could disappear into the belly of a trunk.
xxxxxx"Oi, watch it!" shouted a manβ€”who was also a goat. Thankfully, from the waist down. He glared over his shoulder at the rather ordinary looking fellow stumbling past him. The subject of his distaste grunted and waved his mug of honeyed tea, its contents sloshing over the sides and between his fingers.
xxxxxx"S'ry," he murmured, scrunching his nose. Suddenly, a sneeze erupted from him, the strength of it tossing him backward into a crate of candied apples and lifting the skirts of some wayward ladies. They squealed, sending of breath of frigid air that melded his hand to his mug.
xxxxxx"Oh, come on," he groaned, rolling onto his side and falling to the dirt. He blinked. And squeezed his eyes shut. Opened them. Closed. For surely, he must be mistaken. Or inebriated.
xxxxxxFor through the thicket of bushes and leaves, a set of ruby orbs peered into the revelry. But before the man could yell, the redcap scuttled away into darkness, leaving only a murky memory in its wake.

▁ β–‚ β–ƒ β–‚ ▁


xxxxxxAmaya peered through the lens of her microscope at the bronze watch on her worktop. Joji hummed overhead, the tremble and thump of his synth filling the old antique store with contemporary music. Amaya exhaled to his croon, and wiggled the burnisher into the bezel of the old watch.
xxxxxx"Hey grand- Shit!" A cacophony of tumbling wood and smashing metal followed his expletives, ending with the sharp punctuation of his pained wail. "Ow, ow, ow!"
xxxxxxAmaya did not look up from her work as she said, "That's $6,410 worth of priceless artifacts you just knocked over."
xxxxxx"My femur! My femur!"
xxxxxx"Is decidedly less valuable," she murmured, slipping the watch's crystal face over the dial. "What are you doing in my shop, Ishaan?"
xxxxxx"What most people do in shops? Buy things?" Ishaan emerged from behind a glass cabinet stuffed with various deadly instruments and one too many skulls. "Though I can't imagine how anyone finds anything in this place. When was the last time you organised?"
xxxxxx"It's organised."
xxxxxxIshaan looked around him at the various texts and materials littered throughout the store, all of which seemed to have been placed without reason. A cluster of feathered pens sat beside a fraying Jack-o'-lantern; a pile of rare manuscripts were poised precariously atop a sealed bottle of indiscernible liquid; a frightening puppet with only one eye hung beside a brilliant chandelier of molten gold.
xxxxxx"Right," said Ishaan.
xxxxxx"Well?" Amaya prodded. "Out with it."
xxxxxx"We need Pandora's Box for the New Year's celebrations."
xxxxxxAmaya lifted her head to pin Ishaan with her black stare. She raised a brow. "Do you?"
xxxxxx"Well, yes. Obviously. Because I just said-"
xxxxxx"It was a rhetorical question."
xxxxxx"Oh."
xxxxxxMoments passed, the silence interjected only by the soft ticking of the watch Amaya held in her hands.
xxxxxx"Soooo..." Ishaan began. "Can you do it?"
xxxxxx"Yes."
xxxxxx"Will you do it?" he clarified.
xxxxxx"What happened to the box I gave you last year?"
xxxxxx"Uh..." Ishaan smiled sheepishly. "We broke it."
xxxxxx"How?"
xxxxxx"Gertrude was gassy."
xxxxxx"That literally explains nothing."
xxxxxx"Gertrude is part orc."
xxxxxx"Oh. That explains everything." They shared a slow nod of understanding. Without warning, Amaya stood, wiping her hands on the cloth strewn over her chair. "Don't break anything or I'll sell your organs on the black market to make up my losses."
xxxxxxAmaya glided between the mountain of objects seemingly without care as Ishaan tiptoed behind her. She ducked, disappearing into a narrow passageway that opened up to reveal a marginally wider door. She twisted the handle and stepped in.
xxxxxx"You don't lock it?" Ishaan asked.
xxxxxx"Why? Would you steal from me?" she replied.
xxxxxx"N-no. Geez. Of course not. Please stop looking at me.”
xxxxxxA flood of cold air greeted them. Colder even than the Winter beyond the store's four walls. The room glowed with an eerie blue light. This was Amaya's real collection. The priceless Fey objects and relics beyond the innocuous storefront that declared this place the Home of Intangible Things.
xxxxxxPotions swirling with incandescent hues perched on shelves etched with ancient runes; a wiry potted plant emitted an eerie glow in a corner; a book whose cover shifted with every minute hovered within a glass dome. Yet Amaya ignored all these as she approached a box the size of her palm. She lifted it, peeling back the velvet cloth that encased it.
xxxxxx"Here," she said. "You'll owe me a favour for this."
xxxxxx"Yeah, yeah. I know the rules. But," he chewed his lip, "we were actually hoping for another favour from you. Could you, maybe, attend the celebrations and call upon the box yourself? Its sister was so unruly last year. We had no idea how to get it back in once we'd opened it."
xxxxxx"Put three objects of personal value into the box and call-"
xxxxxx"Yeah, we got your instructions last time. But those rascals inside are hard to wrestle."
xxxxxx"You'll have to pay extra."
xxxxxx"Already on it." Ishaan waved his arm. "My sister has a gem from one of the late king's crowns. So, deal?"
xxxxxxAmaya tilted her head, fixing him with her stare. "Deal."

▁ β–‚ β–ƒ β–‚ ▁


xxxxxxThe box held within it collective memoriesβ€”whispers of another time before the courts had been forged and anarchy reigned. Four powerful faeries had gathered to forge an alliance, carving into a map the lines of their rule. The Courts embodied the balance of the natural world. The seasonal courtsβ€”Summer and Winterβ€”would share the earth's cycle, shifting their power to reflect changes in the climate. The courts of Dark and High would create chaos and maintain order, so that the world would not fall into excess. A High Lady or Lord would command each court, with their mates at their side.
xxxxxxAmaya stood at the centre of a clearing, where a crowd had gathered in anticipation of the night's ritual. The midnight hour neared.
xxxxxxA strand of alabaster hair fluttered into Amaya’s line of vision. She beat her papery wings and the small gust that followed lifted her hair from her face. Her off-the-shoulder dress swished around her ankles, their opal colours changing in the dim light that emanated from the faelights.
xxxxxxAmaya paid her audience no head as she twisted the box’s moving parts, spinning the sundial leftward untilβ€”like a setting sun that had met its endβ€”it was eclipsed by a silver moon. She spun both ends of the box until the flourishing green tress met its barren twin on the other side.
xxxxxxPandora’s box unlocked.
xxxxxxA burst of red light blinded the Fey, and when it retreated, a chorus of cheers rose from them. Scarlet figures of smoke and vapour danced above their heads, wielding small swords and spinning in skirts that left faint trails behind them. The musicians began their symphony.
xxxxxxAmaya tilted her head upwards to watch the memories unfurl, her eyelids fluttering shut against their brilliance. The glow of the figures bounced off the crescent moon on her forehead, the curved mark scattering the colours into a kaleidoscopic dance.
xxxxxxSuddenly, a small red dancer turned and screamed.
xxxxxxAmaya's eyes snapped open. She turned as the people forged of red smoke raced with a fervour, screeching as they fought to return to their box. Large figures of flesh and bone rose behind them, their forearms encased in metal, their faces cloaked in armour. They wore the uniforms of the High Court's royal guardβ€”a legion sworn to protect the faerie on the throneβ€”but their magic did not solely belong to the High Court. A faerie with a swarm of straw-blonde hair threw a column of flame into the throngs of Fey fleeing the woods.
xxxxxx"Give us the Halflings," called a woman in copper armour. "And we might consider granting you exiles and traitors a merciful death."
xxxxxxAmaya had stilled, enraptured by the woman's familiar form, and the emerald eyes that peered from the slit in her helmet. Airell. The girl had been her friend, once. Or as close to a friend as one could find when one was imprisoned in a tower.
xxxxxxThe luck fae had warned her of this. KazimΓ­r Ε Ε₯astnΓ½. He had told her of the late king's downfall and her role in his child's resurrection. He had said with some mirth that she owed him a debt. He had saved her life, he'd claimed. When he was just a child, and she the prisoner of the High Lady of the Dark Court. She had not wanted to believe him, but she did remember him. The small boy with smaller antlers who had come to her cell and offered her luck.
xxxxxx"Feykiller," Airell intoned. "I did not expect to see you. Today must be my lucky day."
xxxxxxAmaya turned and ran.
xxxxxx"Fleeing again, are we?" Airell called out. "Where is the Blood Moon our keepers worshipped?"
xxxxxxAmaya darted between the trees, whizzing left and right until Airell's flames vanished behind her.
xxxxxxA little blue girl collapsed to her knees. "Mama!" she wailed. "Mama!" But the Fey around her did not stop. They had become cruel in their haste to survive.
xxxxxx"Hold on to me," Amaya barked. She wrapped her arms around the small girl, who clung to her with a grip that was unexpected of such a small creature, and ran.
xxxxxx"This way!" she called out to the faeries fleeing aimlessly through the woods. "There's a path that leads out of the forest into a human Walmart and cave on the way should we need to hide. Follow the trees with the crawling vines and blue flowers until you near a small ravine. Quickly. Quietly."
xxxxxxThe Fey stumbled through the darkened woods, a petite Summer faerie emitting a tentative glow to illuminate their path. Amaya looked over her shoulder to see the faeries who had stayed behind to fight the invasion, and those who were sprawled on the ground. They were much too still.
xxxxxx"Found you."
xxxxxxAmaya twisted, flinging the small child forward and into the thicketβ€”better bruised than deadβ€”as Airell lobbed a dozen black arrows toward her with nothing but a thought.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Aurora Kinski Character Portrait: Cullen Lawrence
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βœ– β–Œ"i shut my eyes and all the world drops dead; i lift my eyes and all is born again."▐ βœ–


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    The sound of laughter overpowers music playing. Conversations swirl in a dirty cloud of smoke, the stagnant stench of cigars hides within the collaboration of mephitic odours. A sharp smell of drink wafts towards her, like black plumes bellowing from the windows of a burning house. The crowd had been so jubilant, singing the songs that belonged to the inebriated and joyful. They rubbed shoulders never minding that their toes were often trodden on or that they were in closer proximity to these strangers than they usually were to friends or even family. The atmosphere was one of elation, the warm air occasionally punctuated by whoops and hollers. There was something magical to Aurora about being one of a crowd, an easing to the loneliness within. Everyone acts the same, cheers at the same moment, feels the same emotions together. What she read on their faces is written on hers and in that echo of humanity everyone is as close to being one as they will ever be.

    Her glossy chestnut hair was split in two sections and tied loosely below her ears, resting on her shoulders. Blue eyes roamed her surroundings, catching sight of a girl her age with beautiful nut-brown skin. On her head she wore a red cloth tied to make a hat and on her feet were leather boots. Her garment was garish but Aurora liked it. She expected the girl to try to blend into the background in some way, to camouflage. But then she raised her wings and vanished into a hazy blur. And, of course, she couldn't forget the older gentlemen sitting to her side whom she'd been making conversation with for about half an hour. Or more like him just babbling in her ear. His nose was long and hooked under two slitted golden eyes. His ears were pointed and (from what Aurora assumed) alcohol addiction had melted his skin like putty. The man had a stutter as he talked, and Aurora continued just to give him the occasional chuckle or smile to his stories. She wasn't much for talk anyway.

    Aurora continued to clutch the glass of honey tightly in her hand rested on her lap. She couldn't remember when the drink had landed in her hand, but she knows she hasn't even bothered to take a sip or even look at it. The story-telling man had made a few cracks asking if she was ever gonna drink it, and Aurora just shrugged each time with a tiny smirk. She had never really drank before, and didn't know too much about it. She glanced back over at the man, now going on about a story about his youth which he referred to as "the good ol' days" as he ordered yet another drink. Aurora tried to not let her eyes roll to the back of her head as she continued on about the tenth story he's probably told.

    And just like that she stared down at the hue of golden liquid in her glass, not taking a moments thought as she inhaled the smoky air through her nose sharply before tilting her head back and bringing the glass up to her lips, downing the shot of pure alcohol. The man, for the first time during the whole event, stopped mid-sentence as his mouth hung open slightly watching her. The small crowd of people sitting around her seemed to go silent as they witnessed her drink like a teenager with a sugary drink. Her face scrunched up, not quite used to the unfamiliar taste before she coughed slightly. The crowd erupted in a small cheer and applause as a stranger behind her patted her on the back. It seemed as if everyone was secretly eyeing the drink she had barely touched before then.

    --

    A man's hair was wild and as brown as earth, with small horns either side of his head that reminded Aurora of a juvenile deer horns. There was another girl beside her with eyes bright like acorns themselves. Her skin was just as dappled, pale yet covered with so many freckles that she looked quite tan. Everyone around her, including herself, danced to the violins playing. They had formed a small circle where they retreated, pirouetted, their arms waving from side to side above their heads, their heads swaying, their garments fluttering. The music moved her like a puppet on strings, and she seemed quite the opposite of her usual shy nature. She hadn't counted how many honeyed drinks she had had, but all she knew was her smile was as wide as the golden gates as her laughter almost choked her; her hair in a free wavy mess around her shoulders as she wore the black top hat a tall man had plopped on her head.


    Over the infectious laughs and the crowd spinning around her, Aurora caught sight of someone she recognized from afar. He stood out from the crowd because he seemed to be the only one with his nose stuck in notes he had been writing like he was in the middle of a damn office, not a party. They had known each other for years, growing a liking towards one another. She rolled her eyes as the wide grin continued to stain her features as she squeezed her way through the crowd to near him, almost sneakily and quietly as she outstretched her hand to grab him swiftly and pull him into the dancing crowd.

    "Hey, party animal. Why don't you come--"

    A distanced scream rang throughout the crowd.

    The scream seemed to tear through everyone like a great shard of glass. Aurora froze in place, feeling her eyes widen and pulse quicken, her heart thudding like a rock rattling in box. The blood drained from her face as she could almost feel the pounding of running footsteps on the ground, nearing her. Terror had struck the crowd as she snapped back her arm close to her body, ducking her head as if bracing for the impact of trampling bodies headed her way. Unable to move, she buried her face in her hands as the adrenaline-filled people came crashing into her like bricks. Horror had her frozen and unable to think clearly. Her brain was foggy. She was rooted in agony before a sharp pain came to her shoulder, hitting her like a bullet would. Her body was shoved to the ground, losing her balance easily and quickly. Just like the rushing crowds, the side of her body was chaos. The side of her face collided roughly with the ground, her face in a grimace. The hat she had been wearing flew off, trampled underneath the feet of runners. Sharp pain lanced through her head and colorful spots flashed in front of her eyes as the metallic taste of bitter blood filled her mouth. She felt as if she had been punched in the jaw.

    Unable to focus clearly, she ignored the pain, telling herself she'd worry about it later as she had no time to heal herself. Her cheek had already begun to swell as she bit her bottom lip to avoid crying out. Aurora suddenly felt a pair of hands on her arms, helping her up quickly as she groaned and ached and flinched. Her eyes caught sight of the story-telling old man who quickly stopped against the oncoming crowd to help her to her feet. The blood rushed back to her head and in a blink of an eye, the man was gone running with the crowd. She was alone.