All are playthings of Fate until they bond together
The blog of an idealistic FE fan
All are playthings of Fate until they bond together
I apologize for the hiatus... again :\ BUT! I do have the next chapter to the story, and while it is brief, it means I no longer have heavy writer's block, only light writer's block! Yay! Here is my latest addition to the story.
As the party of Taren, Tyken, Tenn, Annika, and the king's deployed squadron, along with mercenaries Ramona and Simon, reach the entrance to the Forest of Whispers, a man runs out with bloody cuts and bruises. He trembles in pain, and then collapses unto the ground. Annika rushes to his aid and heals him.
As his wounds seal up slowly, he rises and begins to panic. He exclaims something about a rebellion getting powerful tools from men inside the forest, and Schall recalls that there was a stave recently stolen from the royal sage that allowed him to heal an entire army at once. Tyken suggests that they do not pursue the enemy and travel through the forest without provoking anyone, because they do not know the capabilities of their opponent, nor do they know the forest like the dangerous thieves that gather there. Simon blows Tyken off, telling him that the staff is too valuable and cannot be placed in the hands of whatever is coming toward the Northern border. Taren contemplates her possible courses of action, and with Gill's advice to consider the possible casualties in a fight with an enemy they know nothing about, she decides they will enter the forest without looking for the thieves.
When they enter the forest, however, they are immediately ambushed. Ramona grabs Simon's arm and tries to run as soon as she sees their leader, whom she recognized as Petrean. Petrean hired her for more jobs than anyone else, and the jobs he assigned often required a strong stomach and a cold heart. Karti blocks her exit and reminds them of Tyken's ultimatum: they must either help the group or be sent to prison. Ramona curses, then releases Simon, hoping and praying that Petrean won't try to kill her or Simon after her last mission, where she failed to finish off a vital target.
Petrean claims that Ramona stole his pouch after she reported to him that she had not eliminated one of the people she was instructed to. He demands it back, but Ramona tells Taren that she spent it on food. Taren tells Petrean that it probably wasn't his anyway, and he becomes angry, siccing his men on the party. The now healed man calling himself Hemn requests to join them and help out, and Tenn quickly grants him good luck and rushes the enemy.
Due to writer's block, I have not produced current story posts in a while. I was thinking I might try to put out a story post today that would introduce Hemn, but I just don't think I have the ideas I want right now, so I will introduce Hemn the woodsman on a spotlight post! Hemn's description:
A man who guards nature from danger, Hemn is very protective of the environment, and cares more about animals than people. He is fairly dull, as he is uneducated, and he is impressed easily. Although many doubt his brains, he has brawn to spare, as he has lived off of the land alone for many years.
Hemn is an interesting case. He is the only fighter you get aside from Taren, and he serves a much different purpose than she does. You get him early in the game, but because he fulfills a distinct role of his own, he doesn't particularly compete with Taren, either. The upsides of using Hemn in combat are as follows:
It was my fault, he said. It was my fault, it was always my fault. Michael fell out of my arms, he told me, Michael didn't let go, I did.
Diana tells me not to allow him to get to me. But what does she know? He loves her. He loved Michael. He doesn't love me.
But I want him to. I admired him since childhood, even though he never made time for me. When my wings became strong enough for me to fly, I showed him. And I was so proud. But he just stared and said nothing. He stared with empty, disinterested eyes. That hurt me horribly. He didn't care.
I was the result of force. My father was required to have an heir, and even though he had not yet found his beloved, he laid with someone to produce his one and only shame. I live and breathe only to fuel his despair and hatred toward me. So why do I want him to love me instead of returning his spite? I cannot answer, for I understand the concept as little as you do. I can only make mention of tales I have been told, tales of his benevolence, like Diana's.
My father's wife Diana was a Nykos general, a prideful, honorable woman with great combat prowess. She had been overpowered by Sir Nicholas, an incredibly powerful knight and genius strategist, during the deciding battle for control of the Southeast corner of Vein. In her misery and shame, she shaved her head and fasted. You were not allowed to return to Nykos if you had been defeated, because the country expected you to die in combat or die from the anguish of loss. She planned to starve for the next four days, then kill herself with her own axe. However, she wanted to explore the territory she had lost in order to truly destroy her honor, to know how deeply she had failed, and so she traversed the woods, slowly dying of undernourishment, until she collapsed on the third day.
Disgusted by her inability to even complete her own death march, she tried to cry, but her dehydration prevented it, and so instead, she laid on the warm earth and clenched her fists in frustration.
She was found by Leoppold, and she told me that she could not help but be enthralled by his beauty, even while she laid dying in the forest. When he reached out to lift her from her collapsed state, she initially refused, until he spoke. His voice was silk weaving around her body, slowly raising her figure upright and unraveling softly from her frame, giving her sensual chills. When she found herself standing, she was disturbed and hypnotized in equal measure. Her limbs screamed in loud and pointed agony when she tried to lift herself up, but this man had gotten her to her feet effortlessly.
Diana awoke in a haze, lying in a room with golden adornments and artisan vases. Her bed was soft, her military helmet was removed, and the smell of potpourri filled the quarters. She left as quickly as she could, only to stop abruptly when she saw the man again. Leoppold explained that fate had beckoned Diana to the village of the Graciel, a people that descended from the manakete.
He told her that from the moment he saw her, he loved her. Diana hesitated, she was unnerved by this spontaneous and drastic change in her life, but she returned his feelings, and they married in a month's time. She did not regret her decision, but she still kept her head shaved to remind herself of her failure to serve her country.
Their matrimony was bound quickly, but it stuck because of their passion for each other. They had a son, Michael, and he was treated with the utmost love and care. While I was cared for by King Leoppold's servants, Michael received the adoration of both of his parents.
It wasn't right. I had not done anything wrong. But I existed, and that, in Leoppold's mind, warranted his loathing. I trained under Diana, who treated me justly, as a friend or an ally in battle, but not a daughter. I thought that if I sharpened my abilities in war and became powerful, like his beloved wife, I too would be beloved to him. It didn't work.
I learned the ancient tongue of our people, one that only nobility knew, a song-speak that permitted us to bend the will of those we spoke to, and it did not appeal to him. I would spend time with Michael to see if Leoppold would enjoy his daughter if she was in the presence of his son. That also did not appeal to him. He wanted to forget me, not even forget me, but erase me.
He placed Yorke, a Nykos Wolfskin, in charge of the Northern force of shapeshifters, but he placed confidence in me by saying that if he acted out of line, I would need to slander his name and eliminate him immediately. He then informed me that he would be touring Vein to plant in the citizens a demand for independence, and departed swiftly.
I will not fail him. Once I display my prowess as a commander and a warrior, I am sure to win his favor. Otherwise, I have no hope and no chance of garnering his love. Please... care for me, father. Bless me and know that I will always desire your affection and fight for it with all of my strength. Ne'er will I falter, Lord Leoppold.
Today's spotlight will shine on Duchess Yerilla's native land, Kestra! Kestra is home to any able to afford it (which is not cheap o_o) It is bordering Riese, an ally, Nykos, with whom it has a mutual distaste of, Shurca, a trade partner, and Maya, a desert wasteland with little to no population.
Kestra is an aristocracy, and the dukes, duchesses, and councilors are extremely powerful because of the country's wealth. They do not have much of a military force, though, because most Kestrans are pacifists or value their lives over their country. This is why they are allied with Riese: Riese sends them skilled mercenaries to protect the Northern Kestran border, and in exchange, Kestra gives a large sum of money to Riese each year, like an annual mercenary fee and a payment for Riese's loyalty.
It is damp and hot, which is perfect for many herbs and flowering plants. The flora that grow there are sold an an extremely high price, due to their multiple uses, such as tome page paper, medicinal use (vulneraries, elixirs, salves, etc.), and simply aesthetic pleasure. This makes Kestra a very rich country, the richest on the continent, in fact, and those who live there pay hefty taxes with pride. Some who live outside of Kestra question the quantity of plants, because those types of plants should not grow in such abundance naturally, but the people of Kestra don't look into it, because they'd prefer to keep the moneymaking plants in high supply.
There are very few children, because most Kestrans are older, and have built up the wealth to not only live there, but set up a spot where they can cultivate plants and sell them, which takes time and money that they would otherwise have to use on kids.
Kestra is not openly religious.
Kestra is one of the only countries that has wyverns, who live on misty mountains that separate Northwest Kestra from Southwest Nykos.
Kestran playable characters: Yerilla, Harley
Today's Costume Thoughts will be on the triplets, as well as their close friend Annika! Enjoy :)
Also, I am so sorry I took a mini hiatus for the past few days. I have been letting my little brother play Genealogy of the Holy War on my computer's SNES emulator, and he's been all over it since he started.
My costume thought: A bull
Her costume: A risen
My costume thought explanation: I don't know if my costume needs much explaining. Taren is sort of like a bull in a china shop, wrecking things and making a mess. She's not the brightest, but she's tough and willing to lead, and she makes an excellent fighter.
Her costume explanation: "When I was little, I heard stories of another land filled with dead people who walked the earth and were often fought by a great hero and his men. I decided I would die and walk the earth too, but like, less permanent. I almost made Tenn pee his pants, you should have seen the look on his face! It was priceless!"
My costume thought: A ninja
His costume: A hero
My costume thought explanation: Tenn is an interesting case. He wants people to think he's cool, but he tries too hard. If he kept with what he knew, swinging his sword and slaying his enemies, most people would see him as a cool dude. Instead, he wants to impress people with dumb stunts and tall tales. I picked a ninja for him, though, because he is good at what he does, and he should stick to it.
His costume explanation: "My costume was entirely my idea. I got this neat shield and this big sword, fit with a thick gold hilt for catching my opponent off guard. Tyken made my armor plates, and honestly, I couldn't ask for a better brother. It all looks so good together."
My costume thought: Robin
His costume: A thief
My costume thought explanation: Tyken acts very similarly to Robin from FE: Awakening. He's smart, he's level-headed, and he's kind. Additionally, just like Robin, Tyken knows his place. He isn't the true leader, though he is the tactician. Taren is Tyken's Chrom, the inspirational, headstrong authority, and he accepts that without a snag.
His costume explanation: "I intended to go as a hero, but then I realized Tenn's mummy costume had gotten soaked when Taren spilled her soup all over it, so I lent my armor to him and went for something that required less material. Here, I have my bag for stuffing with stolen goods, and I covered my mouth and nose with fabric so I'm harder to identify, I suppose? Romarion informed me that she doesn't dress like this, but then again, Romarion has blue hair, so I don't think I need to justify myself to her."
My costume thought: The Fire Princess
Her costume: Her mother's traveling garb
My costume thought explanation: Annika is like the Fire Princess from Adventure Time to me. Both of them seem, not chill, but not angry. They're normal in terms of temperament, until all of a sudden they're explosive. Annika gets 'heated up' by her surroundings, the battle around her makes her energized, loud, and a little crazy.
Her costume explanation: "My mother is a well known figure in the field of magical literacy and academics, and she packed her desert traveling garb in my bag, just in case I ended up in Nykos or Maya. I wore it because it is traditional sorceress cloth, and I think it looks really cool. Kimmel wanted to wear it, but I had to break it to him that he's already wearing traditional sorcerer garb, not to mention that him wearing girl clothes is not an image I want in my brain. At least he's enthusiastic."
I had a little bit of technical difficulty, but here is yesterday's Unit Spotlight to make up for missing the deadline ;\ I will be posting something else shortly after for today's actual on-time post.
So I was saving this one for last (last of the characters shown in the story so far, that is) because Gill is a very basic bare-bones Jagen archetype. He's there with the protagonist almost the whole time, he's older, wiser, he's promoted upon recruitment, and his growth rates are so low that literally everyone is better than him. The sad part is, unlike most Jagens, Gill doesn't really even excel with his bases. He's just there to be a weak crutch if you can't quite finish off a brigand with one of your other units.
So, with that being said, Gill's description:
A noble knight and captain of the royal guard, he is Syllish's closest protector. When she became comatose, he vowed to protect her life with his own, if necessary. His commitment to her is astounding, and a tad disturbing, he remembers everything he's done for her, everything she's said, and everywhere she's been vividly and precisely. Those who know him say he is self-conscious, and that he acts "manly" so that people won't harass him for his extreme hygiene and OCD behavior, as well as his refusal to eat meat.
Gill may not have the best stats, but for the first few chapters you have him, he is an excellent contingency plan when you can't quite finish off a foe. The good news:
So, mostly for my own enjoyment, I will be talking about what costumes I think my characters' personalities would match with, and what costume I think they'd actually pick. Sorry if you wanted more raw project info and plot advancement, not today :\
I will do the first Costume Thoughts on my personal favorites (that's right, even the writer has their favorites), starting with my blonde duchess.
P.S. This whole series is with the assumption that the characters have knowledge of different cultures. As for the lawyer costume, Maribelle wanted to be a lawyer in FE13, so they definitely exist in the FE universe.
Also, my costume thoughts are based upon if the character were a real person. Their costume thoughts are based on what they would pick, as well as what their world knows.
My costume thought: A magpie
Her costume: A fairy princess
My costume thought explanation: Yerilla is similar to a magpie in that she likes to pick around in other people's business. She looks for the shiny things, the things that stick out, and she grabs on to them, poking and prodding and walking away satisfied with her new information. She can be annoying and just be too much to handle due to her gossiping nature.
Her costume explanation: "I, like a fairy princess, am regal and beautiful. I am of a higher status, as usual, and reign over Harley, who is my fairy servant. Also as usual. She didn't like her outfit, but I think the tiny wings are just darling."
My costume thought: A pilot
Her costume: Fairy servant
My costume thought explanation: Harley is submissive most of the time. She's shy and a bit reserved, but in a time of emergency and crisis, she steps up and becomes much more bold. In the face of danger, when the plane goes careening toward the ground, she will do whatever it takes to keep as many people alive as she can by keeping herself calm in a dire situation.
Her costume explanation: "Um... I didn't really- want to be a servant, because it defeats the purpose of pretending if you're already what you dress as. But milady Yerilla told me that I still had to serve her during the Halloween party, so she suggested, in her rather commanding way, that I be a fairy, like her. So... here I am. It's sort of revealing, and the material makes me a little itchy, but I won't complain. It isn't fitting for a noble's servant."
My costume thought: A dog
His costume: A sheep
My costume thought explanation: Schall is super sweet, and wants nothing more than to make everyone around him happy. He has infinite amounts of energy to play and train, and but he eats a lot and ignores his own needs when he's serving others. Occasionally he'll forget to stay clean or not realize that he has severe wounds because he'd rather be cheering someone up than staying hygienic.
His costume explanation: "Gee, do you like it? I love it, because the suit is so warm and soft. I was prancing around in the village nearby with some kids that really liked petting the fur on my costume, until Michael found me, told me I was an embarrassment, and yanked me back over to the party. It was nice while it lasted, but this is nice too. I just wish I could go back to those kids later, they dug the costume. Maybe I can give it to them when I'm done with it if I don't sweat in it too much..."
My costume thought: A sad clown
His costume: A lawyer
My costume thought explanation: Afrey is generally depressing. His supports are often very philosophical and straight to the point, and his growths and bases show that he isn't particularly talented in any way, so a sad clown is fitting, because he's not happy. And people like to poke fun at him because he doesn't enjoy anything.
His costume explanation: "I just... I didn't want to dress up at all. I don't like parties, either, but Gwenivere told me I had to come or she'd put sticky candy in my smallclothes. So here I am, dressed as a supposed defender of law. But in reality, how much justice is fought for inside the courtroom as opposed to outside of it? Just a thought."
My costume thought: A hippie
Her costume: A blueberry
My costume thought explanation: Crystal has no idea what is going on most of the time. She can concentrate when she needs to, but she has trouble perceiving things the way others do, and because of that counter-culture vibe and her zoned-out nature, a hippie costume is very fitting.
Her costume explanation: "Wha- oh, my costume? Um... I sort of liked the color... and blueberries are good. My mother was a talented seamstress who taught me everything I know, so it wasn't hard to make the costume. Darius says I look stupid. I think I do too. I just wanted to be a giant blueberry. Is that so wrong? ...It is?"
I thought I'd try something new today and write a short story on the jealous paladin Michael. I also might do some writing soon on what Halloween costumes some of my characters would fit best in and why, maybe. Anyway...
Schall walked toward camp with heavy firewood in his arms, grinning at the thought of dinner. He hadn't eaten a home-cooked meal since his twenty-first birthday when his parents invited him over to their manor to celebrate. Now, to thank him and his friends for helping fight off northern-based bandits from robbing an armory, the armorer's wife was preparing baked fish, and to keep the food warm while they waited for certain company, Schall was asked to gather wood.
The certain company was Michael. And Schall had mixed feelings about this. Michael was... difficult. He had always been that way. His food had to be made the way he liked it, his room had to be spotless, and his toys had to be in pristine condition. He had beautiful handwriting and sloppy manners, as well as a nasty temper. Schall had many unhappy memories of Michael mistreating him. There were also good memories, however, and one had stuck with him throughout his life.
"Michael, that is not the proper way to greet someone," Schall's mother sighed, "You cannot expect to be respected when you cannot respect others." Her long, red hair was curly and borderline unkempt, but she never cut it, because Schall loved to play with it when she held him close, and her husband thought she wore her poofy hair with pride. They were a close-knit unit, and Michael had sort of thrown the family's chemistry out of whack.
Schall fiddled with his wooden bird figurine. His father had carved it and hollowed it out so that Schall could keep tiny things he gathered in the forest inside of it. Today, he had collected two or three small, funny shaped acorns and a yellow leaf. Michael had not been impressed by these trophies, even when Schall told him he climbed a large tree to get to it. Instead, he had rolled his eyes and told him to grow up.
"You can't tell me what to do. I don't have to respect you, I don't have to respect your husband or your son, and I certainly don't have to respect ignorant cowards like Vernon!" Michael sniveled and threw a ball across the room that missed Schall's mother's head by a fraction. She sighed and left the room to retrieve the ball.
When she returned, she patiently replied, "If you are asked to be respectful, you act respectful. Even if you determine Lord Vernon is not worthy of your respect, you treat him as if he was your most steadfast friend and superior until he leaves. And even then, it is better to admire than to despise." She placed the ball on the floor and walked away with grace, as she always did.
Schall looked at Michael for a minute, but when Michael turned to return his gaze, Schall pulled his eyes away. Despite yanking his vision away from Michael, he could still sense frustration.
"What?" Michael snapped.
"Why were you staring at me?"
"Because my mom, she's been really nice to you," Schall was uncomfortable. The first two weeks with Michael had been hard, and Schall didn't know what to do with someone who was just so unhappy. He had attempted to reach out a few times, but no positive results came out of it. He was older, and he was scary, and he was distant.
"I don't have a problem with your mom. If that's what you're bothered with," Michael huffed. He sat on a small chair in the corner of their room and pulled out his pen and paper.
"Why are you so angry, then?"
"I'm angry because all three of you have been pushing your joy on me. You don't get it. I miss my parents and you can't fix me because you can't change what happened to them." Michael had opened up a little, this was an opportunity Schall had to help, "I don't get what is so hard about leaving me alone."
"Do you have a dream?"
"What?" Michael looked irritated now, "Why are you asking that?"
Schall gulped, "I want to be a knight. To wear shining armor and fight to save people. People that can't save themselves." He walked over to his toy chest and pulled out a crumpled piece of paper. He gave the page to Michael, where he had drawn a crude picture of a horse and a man with lines around him, lines that probably meant his armor was gleaming in the sun.
Michael stared at the picture. Schall wanted to take it back, but Michael was enthralled with it. He had no idea what he felt then, about Schall, about his new family, and even about his real parents, but he felt as if he was gravitating toward this picture.
Schall said quietly, "Can I put it back now?"
Michael handed it back to Schall slowly, "Why did you show me that?"
"Every day, I learn more about respect and being a gentleman. Chivalry is part of being a knight, and the more I learn about it, the better I'll be at being a knight." He carefully stuffed the paper back into the chest.
"But you're a wimp. You can't be a knight," Michael said sharply.
"I'll be a knight."
"But you're skinny. And scared. And you aren't that bright either."
"I will be a knight." Schall's eyes hardened and his fists clenched, "I won't let anything get in my way, I will become a hero for everyone who needs one."
"Why? What do you owe to this dump?"
"It doesn't matter if I owe everything or nothing at all," he said intently.
Michael was intrigued by this sudden show of resolve, "And why do I need to know about this?"
"Because you need a dream too. If you have one thing you can focus on, everything that doesn't matter will seem smaller." Schall knew he would never become as much to Michael as he wanted to be. He knew his parents would never replace Michael's own parents, and he knew that he would probably get treated badly by Michael just like his parents. But if he could get Michael to see things his way, maybe there was a chance that he could minimize the pain.
Michael hesitated to respond to Schall's statement on having a dream. After a minute or so, he said, "I'll think about it."
Schall paused, then said back, "Okay." He blew out the candle in the room, and went to bed.
The next day, Michael left the room early. Schall woke up to find that on Michael's bed was his picture. The shining, mounted knight.
Schall had not become a knight in the way he thought he would. He had a private tutor that noticed his potential in holy magic, and Schall became a powerful mage in a short time.
But Michael was different. Michael took up training from Lord Vernon. He hated him with every fiber of his being, but he took Schall's mother's words and put them into action, treating Vernon as his superior. Vernon's combat style, however, required much brashness, and Michael came home often battered and bruised. He wouldn't allow his wounds to be treated, and he wouldn't let anyone try to comfort him. His distant nature never really changed.
The gap between the adoptive siblings became wider after the captain of the guard selected Schall as a royal guard. Michael was furious, as Schall spent much less time training, he was just naturally powerful, but Michael had very little talent and had practiced every day for years of his life only to be beaten to a lower position by his younger brother. His skill was admirable, the captain, Gill, had said, but his motivations were not pure and it showed in his fighting style. His confidence was not confidence, but pride, and his anger flared up when his hits were not as good as he wanted them to be.
Michael did not want to admit this to anyone, but when Schall had told him his dream, he determined that he would be better than Schall. All of his work was to defeat Schall's dream, to show him the suffering he went through when he lost his parents and to see how it felt to have joy-filled parents smother you while you wallowed in failure and bitterness.
And Michael felt bad about this being his driver, but it never ceased to push him forward in his training, so he never tried to tell Schall and he never bothered to find a different motivator.
Schall now sat on a stump at a campfire and waited for his brother. The galloping of a horse could be heard in the distance, and the arrival of Michael was loud and showy. His horse was white, and his lance glimmered in the moonlight.
"Schall. Are you the only one here to greet me?" His dirty blonde hair was a bit disheveled, but still clean, and his green eyes were piercing.
"I guess right now I am," Schall said, looking up at his brother, "I'm glad you're here."
Michael squinted at him, "You look... the same."
"Yeah. I don't know why I wouldn't," Schall wondered.
Michael sneered, "I figured you'd have a different look on your face. You're better than me, after all."
Schall tried his best to brush that off, "Are you glad to see me?"
Michael got off of his horse and exhaled, "Schall, you're my brother. Glad is a stretch."
I don't know if all of my readers are: a. uncomfortable talking about this project, b. unable to comment for some reason, c. thinking that their ideas aren't good ones or that the comment they want to make sounds dumb, d. is just shy, or e. all of the above, but c'mon! I would love to get feedback, even suggestions on what to do in the story next, honestly, when I write the plot pieces, they are based only on a sort of abstract idea I have, I don't really have most of this planned out.
To make things easier for everyone, I figured out how to use Disqus as the comment system on this blog! Yay! I personally love Disqus because it makes things much easier and you can sign in to comment in multiple different ways, including Google and Twitter. So please comment, because I want to see how you all have reacted to my work, and how I can make it better.
Or I can keep asking for comments. I can do that too ;)
After a lengthy hiatus due to... ahem... technical difficulties (silently shakes fist at the universe for terrible luck), I have gotten my computer back and can now resume work on this blog! I was pleasantly surprised to find that this site was still visited often by older readers and newer ones, which is a fantastic self-esteem boost that I really needed :)
Please note that Unit Spotlights will still be weekly and on Friday, but I have owed this one since the Friday before last Friday... yikes.
Now, without further ado, Simon, the frail and snarky dark mage.
A bitter and irritable boy, he is vastly more intelligent than most. He is arrogant, though, and he is known to nag those who don't do things his way, which he's convinced is the best way. He scolds his sister frequently for being so "ignorant" to the things she could learn. he finds comfort in books, he has a distaste for other people, and is not one to waste time.
Simon is the only dark mage until you recruit Kimmel. Even when you do recruit Kimmel, the only reason you should bench Simon is if the RNG has treated him with cruelty or you find Kimmel's superior strength and defenses more valuable than Simon's high attack power and adequate speed. The pros of using Simon are as follows:
I am a recent high school grad who really should have better things to do. I have a passion for world building, video games (especially FE), and writing. I also enjoy music, doodling, and avoiding socializing :\