Carnifex's Own: Meeting the Tribe
The Faith has sent Godsworn and allowed a party to travel up to their village, to spend a little time with the tribe who express some willingness to consider rejoining the Compact once their holy mission is complet, but also to see if they can help this tribe.
OOC: This is a follow up scene from last weekend's PRP Demands from Unexpected Quarters. You don't have to have been on the previous thing to pop along, but this scene will be capped at 2 hours. This is to meet with the tribes people and talk to them, as people expressed an interest in that. Going into the cave on Sunday is where I will likely have to restrict numbers if I need to!
Nov. 23, 2019, 2 p.m.
Outside Arx - The Telmarch - Carnifex's Own Village
Comments and Log
The Faith had responded to the request to aid - sending along some Godsworn and various others who wished to follow Sir Volgan back to his tribe. The journey takes a turn off the road before Telmarch, moving further up into the mountains, passing through various trails you'd struggle to spot if you were not looking for them. Eventually the trees part and the trail leads up to the village redoubt of Volgan's tribe. Having tarried at a waystation to escort you, Volgan seems happy to be home and he whistles out to the sentries. With a creak, the doors open and Volgan gestures for everyone to enter. The passageway is certainly large enough to enter mounted, and a hitching post is clearly there by a stables just inside the gates.
Waiting for the group is an older balding looking gentleman with a slight scowl, a woman who bears some resemblance to Volgan and another portly gentleman. A young boy sits on a fur-padded chair that has been brought out, looking rather sickly and rather comical with a large sword sitting over his lap.
Reese is here with those who traveled along with Sir Volgan. The princess is mounted upon her white war horse and is all decked out in her gear. She was rather quiet during the journey here, focused on the travel and even on trying to keep watch. She takes her horse to the hitching post, dismounts, spends a moment givng the animal water and food. Reese looks over to the woman, older man and the boy, giving them all a smile of greeting.
Amari claimed she had good reason to be along, but it may have simply ended up being curiosity paired with a strong desire to be out of Arx for a time. Aside from yawning constantly, and looking as though she's about to nod off and fall out of her saddle most of the time, she's been in good spirits. Now is no exception, even if she doesn't seem to know what to make of the group that have just presented themselves. A brow arches mildly, almost imperceptibly as she looks from them to her travelling companions before just going straight to introductions, "Greetings! I am Lady Amari Keaton, and-" She turns a bit to pause and see if more introductions are forthcoming.
Marian rides along with the party, following Sir Volgan and not speaking very much to her companions as she stays on guard for any ambushes along the trail. She doesn't even drop her vigilance as they make their way into the village, taking a moment to note their defenses, cataloging possible exits in case matters do not go well. When the entourage arrives, Marian dismounts from her horse. She has not been part of the tribes since her bending on knee all those years ago but she remembers. She gives them the proper respect, using her mantle of warchief to speak to the leaders of her rank and power. She speaks in the language of her birth, Oathlands shav, to the party that comes to greet them, "And I am Princess Marian Redrain, Warchief to the North and once as a young woman chieftain to the tribe known as Greenmarch." She identifies her prodigal roots and hitting her fist against her chest and bowing. For the benefit of her companions who may not speak the language, "I am just greeting them in their own tongue."
Marian checked command + diplomacy at difficulty 30, rolling 42 higher.
Tesha had decided that she would attend things as well. The Telmar woman had to get a new horse to go on though since her old one was eaten at an incident in Highhill. She waits for others to introduce themselves once dismounted and gives a bow of her head to the people that were awaiting them. "I'm Lady Tesha Telmar." she introduces herself and then steps off to the side.
Tatienne is outside the city, the natural wanderer has been in quite the good mood with this excuse to travel. Her assistant went with most of the way, but turned off for Riva to deliver some things to some of her friends and her father. She clearly knows how to ride a horse, but not well; managing to keep up but always clumsily. She may have at some points brought up the notion that it would've been easier to travel by river boat.
The prodigal merchant has brought wares. Possibly to be used as gifts for negotiation, depending on how things go. "Tatienne Lachance, of the Rivenshari Clan." She introduces herself, adding as an afterthought, "Merchant."
"My name is Sundrin. I am Uncle to the Carnifex and I lead his council. This is Aarla, our JournalKeeper. And Harnan, our Charity." The balding man explains before gesturing to Volgan "You have met our Knight Marshal. And, it is my honour to present Carnifed Galdar, son of Carnifex Borrus, and so on to the First Carnifex, Godrin." As Marian speaks in the tongue of the local shav, Sundrin lifts an eyebrow and nods "You are kind, but...Aarvani will do. Most here speak it, though you will forgive, it has been....a long time since you all fell to heresy. A long time for us to be alone up here. We tend to use it only between the others like us, those remnants of the Holy Crusade, so, it grows rusty. Better written than spoken, our JournalKeeper sees to that." There is a pause "I will be honest, I would not have you here. But. The council voted and I was the minority - I do not trust those who fell to heresy. But. We are dying. And so it was decided we must try."
Sundrin gestures to the portly gentleman he identified as Harnan, who steps forward to speak "In the name of Gild, we grant you guest rights so you may rest before you send your people into the cave to return the First Carnifex." There is a pause before Sundrin adds "This satisfies?" Tatienne is given a slightly strange look by Sundrin, as though she might kick his puppy at any moment. "Ah. Yes. We had heard you were taking in many of the river tribes. We did not know if it was a sign of your failings...but. The families...Keaton, Telmar, Redrain...you will forgive us" And he nods to each in turn "We do keep track of what is going on in the world - your families are known to us."
Reese goes to join the others in giving greetings. She listens to Sundrin as the man speaks, nodding in response to his words. "An honor to meet you." She says in his direction, before adding. "I am Princess Reese Grayson and a Knight of the Templars. The cave is right near here?" She asks, not sounding fully certain.
Amari dismounts only when it's clear they've been made welcome and can expect the hospitality of not being murdered. That suits her, so she sweeps a leg over and lands smartly, the dapple gray's reins in hand. He gives a stampy snort and the Keaton a yawn she directs at her feet. Since Marian seems to have it well in hand, she says nothing more, but offers a polite dip of her chin to the lot as she undoubtedly memorizes which title and name belongs to which new face.
Tatienne smiles to Sundrin, "Don't worry. I've been learning about the gods of the compact, I know what you're talking about when you speak of guest's rights in the name of Gild." She seems unconcerned by his apparent wariness, clearly used to it. "I'd love to hear your perspective on them as well, of course. If you'd like to share."
Rosalind introduces herself with a big smile,"Hello. I'm Lady Rosalind Ravenseye, though,"she looks at the others,"most call me Ros or Rosa,"her large hazel green eyes bright and friendly. The tall northern redhead is dressed in her leathers and has been walking on foot.
Tesha gives a quirk of an eyebrow at Sundrin's words, heresy? She was wondering what exactly he meant by that, but given they were under guest rights it was better to just let it go for now. She simply gives a dip of her head to their hosts and waits to be instructedon what to do.
Marian is a guest of the village and gives a respectful nod as the host tells him that Arvani is fine for this gathering. Being called a heretic is much harder pill for Marian to swallow as her own deep Faith rails silently within those stormy eyes at the idea that her own spirit is somehow corrupted. However, manners persist so that interplay of emotions on briefly play on her face. She keeps her voice steady with command as she offers in Arvani, "Sundrin, Uncle to the Carnifex, I am honored to meet you." She gives him a bow. She turns to Aarla, "JournalKeeper and Harnan, Charity of your people, Aarla, I am honored to meet you." She gives another bow. She moves to the boy with the sword across his lap, "Carnifed Galdar, son of Carnifex Borrus, I am honored to meet you." The same respectful bow is given again.
"I have taken pilgrimage to Sanctum to keep a Faithful path. I would be honored if you spent time counseling me in your ways so I may understand if I error," Marian tells Sundrin, not arguing against the claim of heresy but giving a guest's ask to understand more. She nods thoughtfully as Sundrin mentions that he was part of the minority that did not wish them there.
The smiling woman steps forward "Please, do forgive Sundrin. I think he is still unhappy at the council vote - but each of the 9 are heard before the Carnifex makes his decision. It is not your fault that the Justice did not carry the day. Please, be welcome." Aarla steps forward to offer help if any need it off their horses "Volgan, get the gates closed and prepare the hall for guests. And get the Carnifex inside, the thaw is not yet done and he will get cold." The young lad she refers to is just staring a little at everyone, looking perhaps more anxious than anything. "Yes. Inside" He intones "We should all go and. ah. feast. For Gloria."
As the doors of the hall are opened, Aarla turns back "And I am the JournalKeeper as Sundrin said. If you need to make your obedience to Lord Vellichor, you may do so with me if you are comfortable doing so. And yes, m'lady Templar. The cave is near by, though sealed - ...." Aarla is interrupted by Sundrin "..you did bring the Godsworn to open the cave yes? It is sealed. Needs a Godsworn." The group know that there is another group following behind in the slightly slower luggage wagons, including Godsworn sent by the Dominus. "Oh, hush Sundrin. Let them in and rest." Aarla replies. "And pleased to meet you as well, Lady Rosalind. Volgan! The gates!" Volgan looks like every adult male chastised by his mother and hastens to her bidding.
The mention of error by Marian gets a chortle from Sundrin "You listen to your Dominus, yes? That is where you err. A lycene! The people that brought us Marach 'Avarice Builds Cities' indeed. And after all that death, for the crusade to fail. The hard work of Alor and the others. Ah. But. We are willing to consider, yes? Perhaps you are not as far gone as you seem. Perhaps there is a way we might rejoin you, in time."
Reese nods at the mention of a feast. "That sounds wonderful, thank you." She softly says. "For Gloria." Reese then echoes. She then nods in response to Aalra's words. "We have some Godsworn following, who will be arriving." Reese seems to be ready to head inside, planning to follow along after the hosts.
Tatienne frowns at the mention of 'the 9.' "I take it you do not honour the Great Liberator, then?" She asks in a tone that's more accusatory than she intended it to be, and when she realizes this she tries to cover it up with, "As a matter of curiosity." She forces a smile, though it's clear she takes that notion as a bit of an affront. To Aarla, "I appreciate the offer, my lady. But I've recently gotten into a bit of trouble with my obedience to Vellichor, so I'm trying not to do anything too risky in that regard for the time being."
"Before my second marriage to House Redrain, I was first married to Prince Valen Valardin and practiced the Orthodox," Marian advises Sundrin as she tries to distract him from Tatienne's words. She follows the others in the hall, opting to take the more difficult counsel member to speak with while the others interact with the rest of the council, "While I have adapted to my new home and taken the mantle of my fallen husband to defend our people, I do find myself oftentimes leaning on the teachings of my youth in the Oathlands." She does not correct Sundrin on his words on the Dominius, even if there is a tightening of her hand that she keeps under her cloak.
"Thank you for the welcome." Amari offers, but that's the extent of it, as she's been mostly listening and looking harmless (for a heretic). She gathers her quilted aeterna cloak around herself more tightly, now that there seems no need to draw her sword and murmurs something about being on good behavior to her gelding. She seems ready for a feast at that point, not the theological debate in the making that draws her gaze and causes it to bounce to each speaker in turn. There's a mild frown, then distraction in the form of Tesha who she subtly wrinkles her nose over at.
Tesha figures they aren't going to drop the heresy stuff, but there's no sense in speaking on it out here. She gives a bow of her head to the others and a smile, "Your hospitality is appreciated." she tells them. Then there's a bit of a smile to Amari and she nods her head in turn to her subtle nose wrinkle. "Let us proceed." she offers to the others.
Rosalind silently sticks close to the others for now, though the friendly nature she Carrie's doesn't diminish. Rosa is just extra cautious but does offer with a sincere grin,"Thank you for the welcome and such. It's generous of you." Aella would be so proud!
"The Great Liberator?" Aarla asks, looking a bit confused before Sundrin leans in to explain "Their new Gods." And this gets an ahh "The Carnifex has not ruled. He awaits the opinion of the Seraph of Sanctum on the matter, and then he will consider the ruling. But, kind of you to call me lady, m'lady. But not necessary. Some of the disciples when first they settled here did try to keep track of who was noble and not but...it stopped having meaning, here in the mountains." Aarla explains. Sundrin feels compelled to add "Even if he has faltered and fallen, the Seraph of Sanctum is still the best of you. Has a head. Thinks /cautiously/....and good good." The last said to Reese "Godrin sealed it. But. None left here who took the oaths. None to give them. Most of the village were disciples, the Godsworn were released of their vows by necessity. For children. Some stood by them. Others did not....though, if you were Valardin, northlander" he offers to Marian "You have some relation to the Carnifex. Distantly. Through his father's line of course. My father's line were from the Crownlands."
They are led into the large hall, various trophies and banners sit on the wall - a Raven's head banner on a green field, some old pendants of the Faith, even some broken standards of Telmar and other groups. Judging from the size, these belonged to small units, patrols perhaps who strayed too close and into conflict with the tribe. The Carnifex is carried in and set on another fur padded chair at the head of a large table that has been laid out with food - end of winter fare, so pickles, bread, cheeses, preserved meats reinvigorated with broths. "Please, eat." The young boy says. He shifts in his seat. He must be 12 perhaps 13 at most. "My uncle.." and Sundrin is gestured at "Tells me your people have a name for us. The Carnifex's Own?"
Reese checked perception + theology at difficulty 35, rolling 1 lower.
Tatienne checked perception + theology at difficulty 35, rolling 12 lower.
Marian checked perception + theology at difficulty 35, rolling 4 lower.
Amari checked perception + theology at difficulty 35, rolling 4 higher.
Rosalind checked perception + theology at difficulty 35, rolling 7 lower.
Tesha checked perception + theology at difficulty 35, rolling 10 higher.
Reese heads in with the others. She peeks over to Marian at the mention of her being distantly related, looking curious and even impressed. The Princess takes one of the seats and eagerly reaches for some the bread. She might be hungry after that journey. "Thank you." She says, reaching for some cheese and pickles now. "Carnifex's Own..I am not sure if we do." She muses. "You know about Solace? I think I see their banners here."
Marian smiles deeply at the mention of the Seraph of Sanctum, not arguing the piety of the Dominus. She listens as more information is provided about the sealed cave. She nods at the mention that they might be distant relations. When they are led into the large hall, she looks over the trophies and banners with interest. She doesn't react to the sight of Telmar and other groups banners there. At the offer of food, Marian moves to partake, taking the hospitality of the hosts as a good guest would. She admits to Sundrin over dinner, "I have little knowledge of the Carnifex, my own education seems to be lacking in that front. I would know more of the history of you coming here."
"I am no lady either, goodwoman." Tatienne answers Aarla in turn, relieved to hear the Great Liberator wasn't dismissed out of hand. She takes her part in the meal, taking a good look around at the others. She looks at the boy, considers him. "Many of the ways of the Compact and its splinters remain foreign to me." She answers. "So, what is it that this Carnifex sealed in this cave?"
Amari sticks with Tesha, close enough she can murmur a few words to her as they settle in at the table, with the collection of trophies and various standards making curious decor to admire. It's almost enough to fully distract from the promise of food, that or she's waiting politely for someone else, anyone, to start in. "History is a difficult beast to wrestle. Most of it remains hidden, and no one is quite able to describe it quite the same, as if they've reached blindly into its burrow and felt a leg, or tail or snout and decided what it looked like based on touch alone."
Tesha joins Amari on the walk in, she murmurs to her Keaton friend as they go. "I'm interested to see other parts of the valley if they would allow." she adds in a voice that's pitched for their group to hear. Then there's a look back to Amari as they go and she gives the woman a quiet word as they head after the hosts.
Rosalind sits near Reese, reaching for bread and meat, her eyes looking at the banners. Curious. Rosalind is mostly learning at the moment, so she nibbles on her bread.
Reese gives Rosalind a smile when she sits nearby and now she has picked out some cheese as well. She looks to be enjoying the feast.
The young Carnifex seems quite proud that he knows the answer to Reese's question, repeating the story like any young ruler told his histories and forced to repeat them in rote "My great grandfather, Levahl, rode out in the 20th Crusade, to purge the Heretic Tribes of the upper valleys. The tribe had moved west from the Crownlands. On his way, he found the heretics waylaying a patrol of the Fallen Knights of Solace. Levahl led the charge. The heretics were killed. The Fallen Knights though quarreled with Levahl, and called him heretic. The two sides fought, and Levahl was victorious but was struck below his armour. Great Grandfather died, all his enemies dead. His last command was that the 20th Godrinian Crusade was ended. And the horns were sounded." The boy looks to Sundrin, who nods approvingly. "Mm. History. Yes. An important thing. And what is sealed in the cave /is/ the First Carnifex." Sundrin answers to Tatienne "We had travelled across the lands after the Marachian heretics. The cave was their last hide. And Godrin went in, he commanded the cave sealed behind him - that he alone could finish this, and when we had need of him, he would return. And so our people settled here. To wait for his return. Unable to go home, even though the mission was done. We have done the Gods work and kept this place pure since."
Mention of the rest of the valley gets nervous looks amongst the locals before Volgan speaks "It...may be unwise until Godrin returns. With the losses, we can hold little. At night, there are things that hunt. We have lost 3 on patrols over winter. No battle, just taken. The last Carnifex among them, his body left strung up, drained."
The mention of history though does bring Aarla to song, the gentle history of the tribe becoming background, and the list of others they have fought. A good compendium of the lost tribes of the Oathland sects if you care to listen.
Marian listens to the stories that Carnifex tells her, acting as a respectful guest. She quietly eats, only interjecting a question here and there. She does her best to earn the respect of Sundrin since he seems to be their biggest critic, showing her more Orthodox roots to the hosts since they seem more comfortable with that.
Tesha sits quietly and eats a bit of the food that is provided by their hosts. She doesn't talk very much, listening to things and cataloging the surroundings to see if there's any more interesting banners.
Rosalind is actually inquisitive in nature so she's asking a million questions. She polite of course, but chatters a million miles a minute--energy abound!
After hearing the history, Amari ahs softly, as everything seems to fall into place in our mind. She has that sort of look. "I stayed for a time with Abandoned in a valley not far from Artshall. They had gone away from the Compact to practice the Faith in a similar manner, though they were not crusaders to my knowledge. They just felt even the Seraph of Sanctum had strayed from the orthodox. It was commendable that they cleaved so closely and heartily to the gods, but we still came to accomodate each other. Now Duke Laurent's helped build a school for agriculture there, where they live still, sharing their knowledge of planting and their deep faith in Petrichor." She pauses there, raising a finger to indicate there's more but she'd like a sip of her drink first. "I mention this because they were predated upon by others outside the Compact, and the Faith. Those that would steal their youth and sacrifice them in dark rituals. Perhaps something similar is the cause of these disappearances? There was quite a hive of these demon worshipers there we destroyed."
"It may be so." Sundrin admits to Amari "We have dealt with dark forces before. But. It is why we must finally go into the cave and get Godrin back. It is why the others sent to you for help to do so, I mean. Once he is back, ther eis no need for you to fight our enemies, they will not stand against Godrin. He will wield Valiant - his warpick blessed by the hand of his cousin Alor - and our enemies will turn to dust rather than fight him." There is a smile from Sundrin, as if he relishes such a thought "I look forward to tomorrow, when we shall see him. It will be quite the honour for us all to look upon him once more, and learn from him. But. I should go and prepare - we need to ensure everything is just right. Just right. Please. Stay. Eat. Drink, talk. Aarla does love to talk." And Sundrin skulks off to go do whatever it is that balding grumpy men do.
"You...will find the council have a more open mind than Sundrin, Lady Amari. Many of us would like to consider rejoining. We cannot speak for the other villages, others who call themselves Carnifex, or anyone else. But...we have been here a long time, doing our duty. For it to end? To go to the home the stories speak of?" Aarla smiles wistfully before she nods "I hope tomorrow brings that release."
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