Mar 13th, 2021 (edited)
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  1. Between the branches of a fallen tree.
  2. There is but a light breeze blowing. A thick net of branches form a barely stable platform to traverse between the northwestern banks of the dell and the fallen tree that spans the length of the ditch. Sharp twigs move quickly to swing at anything that passes through, scratching and clawing. Few leaves grow here, those that remain having become brown and shrivelled long ago. Shadowy mists and blackthorn blossoms obscure a shrine of dark black crystal that stands here. Casting darkness all around, a shadow totem thrusts up from the ground, chilling the air.
  3. There are no obvious exits.
  5. A soft voice materializes in your thoughts, whispering, "An interesting one, is he not?"
  7. You have emoted: Esei blinks slowly, tipping their head. "He is."
  9. The voice twists through your mind, brushing aside concerns and stray musings as it asserts itself in your mind with its empty tone, "You seem to have come to some realizations in My fulcrux, little one. Still harboring doubts about yourself?"
  11. You say, "...of a sort. But they are temporary."
  13. The damp ground convulses, rising up into the form of Nocht, the Silent, an unshakable floral scent still clinging to Him.
  16. Little is discernible about Him, but the way shadows cling to Him makes it clear that He is a radiant immortal. A voluminous cloak engulfs His form, leaving none of His body visible. Even His face is lost within the shadows of a large hood. A strange shimmer ripples in the air about Him, faint but clearer in contrast with the darkness the lingers about Him. A subtle floral scent wafts through the air nearby, a sickly sweet fragrance mixed with wyrden rot and decay.
  18. He is wearing:
  19. a voluminous cloak of concealing shadows.
  21. You give Nocht a respectful bow, one hand clasped over your heart.
  23. Softly, Nocht, the Silent whispers, "Hmm..."
  25. You think to yourself: ** ...a gentle swell of simple, pale gold concern. **.
  27. Nocht reaches down, exposing an ashen hand choked in brilliant green vines and snapdragons. He ever-so-briefly catches your chin, tilting it up to look towards His eyes hidden within the hood of His cloak. "See that they are, My little one..." He quickly releases you from His grasp as He stands upright. "As to your other question, there is a roadblock. Also... temporary."
  29. You have emoted: Nodding briefly, Esei exhales slowly, eartips twitching subtly as they listen.
  31. Pulling His hand back into His cloak, Nocht, the Silent whispers, "Very good. I will speak with dearest Viravain about that particular issue for now. You, little one, should focus on purging yourself of any doubts. The Wyrd stirs. Don't falter before it."
  33. Voice firm, you say, "I will not."
  35. Soft voices murmur from the surrounding branches.
  37. Nocht, the Silent whispers, "I know. You would not have remained one of Mine so long if I doubted."
  39. Nocht, the Silent whispers, "I shall seek out Viravain now. Is there anything else you seek?"
  41. You shake your head.
  43. Nocht, the Silent whispers, "Hmm... Then be well, Esei. I'm always watching."
  45. The surrounding shadows wane, falling back in despondent melancholy as the form of Nocht, the Silent dissolves into wisps of shadow.
  47. You let loose a long breath from your lungs, exhaling slowly.
  49. You have emoted: Esei presses a flat palm against the solid surface of the shrine, eyes closing.
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