Of Guilt & Love: Ghosts of the Past

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Backstory: Natalie D'Augustine, the daughter of Keller Amberlin D'Augustine and Kylera, grand-daughter of Trap Sturdivant-T'Sarran and Jyslin T'sarran, wished to know of her mother's death, and the nature of the relationship that Kylera and Cordir had. She was determined to learn more of a ghostly figure that had been seen in the Temple of the Chosen of Fate...

Within The Tapestry of Fate [Exits: north]
Stepping through the spider-web, you find yourself standing beneath countless stars--- no, not stars, but strands of light, their incandescent glow pushing back the darkness that would otherwise overcome you. You stand on a circular cathedra of dusky marble striated with silvery gray. Four titanic, equidistantly spaced archways of albescent jade yearn upward towards the lights above you. Sable fires seethe within three of them, a spider-web filling the fourth. In the center of the rostrum stands an intricately carved wooden loom. It is cool here, like the first misty chill of twilight, and you shiver slightly, hair prickling on the back of your neck as you realize: Perhaps this is no place for a mortal to be.
The Loom of the Weaver is here, coruscating with an unearthly radiance.
Natalie is here.

Natalie steps towards the archway to the South. She says hesitantly, 'Mother?'

A shape takes form within the flames.
A shape, womanly in form, steps out of the archway, made of those dark fires.
Natalie looks towards the shape.

The being of fire raises its hand in warding, warning Natalie to come no closer.

---. you feel cold ---.

Natalie shivers uncomfortably.

---. the warmth drains from you like water from behind a burst dam---

Natalie wraps her arms close to her body.

A whisper in your mind: >> Who seeks to know of Those Beyond?>>

Natalie says (in common), '.I---I do.'

A whisper in your mind: >> speak your name>>

Natalie says (in common), 'Natalie Rose D'Augustine'

The shape nods. The shape seems to waver, then solidify---

The fire within the archway flares, and before you stand a stunningly beautiful Drow Elf woman.

Natalie turns pale.

The woman smiles, and fingers the belt of skulls about her hips. She speaks, her voice like midnight velvet. "I am Polnevdra. Whom do you seek among the dead?"

Natalie says (in common), 'Kylera D'Augustine'

Polnevdra nods. "Kylera. Her mother Jyslin and I were close, when I bore mortal form."

Natalie nods slowly.

Polnevdra says, (in drow) 'Kylera is here.'

Natalie says (in common), 'where?' Natalie looks around.

Polnevdra smiles sadly, and gestures behind her, to the flames that dance just beyond.

Natalie walks closer to the flames. Natalie says (in common), 'Mother---'

The Drow arches one white brow. 'Do you seek to join her in death, then?'

Natalie says (in common), '.nn.no' Natalie stops where she stands.

She nods. 'Then step no closer.'

Natalie nods. Natalie takes a few steps back.

The Drow steps over to the form of dark fire which has been motionless as you spoke. She lays one dark hand against the flames, smoothing her fingers over the surface. 'Her love for you is strong, to have come this far,' she murmurs.

Natalie smiles slightly.

The form of fire flickers, as if trembling.

Natalie shivers uncomfortably.

The form of fire flows a tiny bit closer to you--- but seems to discorporate a bit from the strain of doing so.

One fiery hand reaches out.

Natalie steps closer to the form.

Polnevdra glances over, shocked, and gestures. The form slips back towards the fire. Polnevdra frowns. 'This is most unusual.'

Natalie looks at Polnevdra.

(You see a stunningly, in-humanly beautiful woman--- but something about her is not quite mortal--- and you realize that her gown is not only crimson, it is wet with fresh blood)

Polnevdra frowns. 'Tis unusual that a spirit should be thus --- bound.'

Natalie says (in common), 'bound?'

She adds, 'Usually, a soul goes on to its next Incarnation by now.'

Natalie says (in common), 'is she okay?' Natalie looks frightened.

The Drow tilts her face to one side, thinking. 'No, it is not .. the Paladin--- ' Her tone drips scorn. Polnevdra reaches out, as if to pluck up something, and as she does so, a pair of long, wicked golden scissors appear in her hand.

Natalie says (in common), 'my father?'

She nods, disgust written clearly upon her face.

Natalie steps back against the tapestry.
The threads are warm against your back, surprisingly so.

Polnevdra glances at you, almost as if she had forgotten you were standing there.

'Oh, child, you've nothing to fear of me. Death comes to all, in the end.' She smiles, not ungently. 'But this--- this is a problem. Kylera should have been passed on, reborn by now. . . ' She studies the form of fire intently.

Natalie says (in common), 'what does it have to do with my father'

Her emerald eyes close for a moment, and she reaches into the form of fire, then slides a shining golden strand from the fiery figure 'Shhhhh'.. Her fingertips gleam, as she withdraws her hand back out, fingertips close together. Bound around it is a scarlet thread, and a sapphire one, as well as one of indigo.

Her eyes open slowly, and she examines the threads.

Natalie watches her.

A frown creases her brow. 'Where is that Cordir? She is so much better at reading the living---'

The spider-web opens.
Cordir arrives from the north.
Cordir bows to the Drow, murmuring, 'Hello, Sister.'
Natalie looks at Cordir.

Cordir nods in recognition to Natalie.

Cordir says, 'What is it, Wyld?'
Polnevdra frowns, and gestures at the knot of threads in her hand.
She mutters, 'You know I can't make sense of this---'

Cordir smiles quietly. She takes the strands deftly untangling them.
Cordir murmurs, 'The children. The mother. The father. Family D'Augustine--- and my own thread.'

Cordir turns abruptly to face Natalie.
Cordir says, 'Why did you come, Natalie? What more do you seek here?'

Natalie startles slightly. Natalie says (in common), 'confirmation'

Cordir says, 'Of---?'

Natalie says (in common), 'the answer given to me'

Cordir gestures to the trembling form of ebon flame. She says, 'Your mother's soul. Bound here.'

Natalie nods.

Cordir smiles sadly. 'Love and guilt. Two of the most powerful forces in the world.'

Natalie says (in common), 'guilt?' Natalie looks toward the flame.

Cordir nods and says, 'What mother would not feel guilt over leaving a child behind?'

Natalie wipes some water from her eyes. Natalie nods.

Cordir says quietly, 'If you have aught to say, Natalie, to your mother---'

Natalie reaches her hand toward the flame, 'I love you, mother---'

The figure trembles--- the flames scatter for a moment, then struggle to reform.

Natalie looks at Cordir. Natalie says (in common), 'did I hurt her?'

>> Natalie--- my own little flower---.<<

Natalie says (in common), 'Mother!'

Cordir shakes her head, turning her face away.

>> Forgive me.<<

Natalie says (in common), 'I do---I do..'

>> I love you, my little flower<<

Natalie says (in common), 'Mother I need to know---'

>> I miss you.<<

Natalie says (in common), 'I miss you too Mother'

The form trembles, and again begins to discorporate, only to pull back together again.

Polnevdra watches all of this with narrowed eyes.

Natalie says (in common), 'mother---about Lady Cordir---' Natalie glances over at Cordir. Natalie says (in common), 'did the two of you make amends?---'

Polnevdra glances over at Natalie, obviously displeased. "how is this little girl disrupting my kingdom so?" She demands.

Natalie shivers uncomfortably. Natalie frowns.

The form turns towards Cordir, who turns slowly to face it in return.

Natalie looks at Polnevdra.

The two gaze at each other.

Natalie says (in common), 'I am sorry---.' Natalie looks at Cordir.
Natalie looks at the fire.

Polnevdra glares at Natalie. An icy coldness shivers down her spine.

Natalie turns white.

>> We wronged each other much.<<
>> We forgave.<<
>> please---<<
>> so tired---<<
>> let .. me --- rest---<<

Natalie says (in common), 'I love you mother---.'
Natalie says (in common), 'go rest---'

Cordir glances over at Polnevdra.

Natalie falls down onto her knees and stares at the floor.

Cordir nods, and the Drow steps back through the archway, the fires roaring around her.

The form of blackfire wavers, then looses form, flowing over the temple floor.
The wavelets of fire flow over your legs, not burning, but comfortingly warm.
As they reach the terminus of the cathedra floor, they fade into the shadows.

Natalie waves a hand over the flames.
Natalie shakes her head.

Cordir meets your eyes with a gaze that is entirely Immortal--- black strewn with bits of light that could only be Threads of the Pattern.

Natalie whispers, 'what is wrong with my mother's soul?

Cordir says, 'Natalie--- she was bound here--- Keller's guilt, your love. Her own guilt and love.'
Cordir smiles wanly.

Natalie says (in common), 'his guilt?'

Cordir gazes down at the tangle of Threads she holds and nods. Cordir says, 'I think--- I think there have been enough revelations for one night, Youngling.'

Natalie says (in common), 'is she okay now? And why was Polnevdra so angry with me?'

Cordir says, 'Because Kylera's soul was hers--- and yet--- here was a mortal calling it forth from where it should have rested.'

Natalie says (in common), 'did I hurt her?' Natalie looks confused.

Cordir says, 'Kylera? No. Not at all.'

Natalie sighs in relief.

Cordir says, 'Polnevdra? ' The Weaver chuckles. Cordir says, 'Well---. that Incarnation of Wyld was a bit more--- egotistical than others.'

Natalie chuckles, evidently amused.

Cordir says, 'I think she disliked the challenge to her Realm.'

Natalie says (in common), 'I was just doing what I was told'

Cordir nods.

Natalie says (in common), 'I also wish to apologize for leaving so rudely before.'

Cordir says, 'Sometimes, my wishes do not coincide with those of other Aspects or Incarnations of the powers I serve.'

Cordir makes a gesture of dismissal. 'Natalie. You had just learned I hired a murderer to kill your mother. Being upset is rather normal.'

Natalie says (in common), 'so you did not know of this?'

Cordir says, 'That her soul was bound by the guilt and love of her family?'

Natalie says (in common), 'no--- of me talking to her---'

Cordir says, 'I sensed it likely, and wished to give you privacy.'

Natalie says (in common), 'can anybody do that?'

Cordir shakes her head. 'No. You have a powerful call.'

Natalie says (in common), 'I have to go---.' She looks up at Cordir.

She nods and says, 'I understand.'

Natalie leaves north.