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Author Topic: A great fortune is a great slavery - Shausek Dyengothra  (Read 170 times)


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A great fortune is a great slavery - Shausek Dyengothra
« on: October 05, 2019, 08:11:23 PM »
Shausek Dyengothra

Age: 21

Ethnicity: Rashemi

Birthplace: Sly-Var, Hazlan

Profession: Slave

Appearance: Shausek's hair is short, atypical of Rashemi, but he otherwise has the characteristic dark eyes and hair of his people. His skin, however, has not seen much sun, suggesting he has not toiled in the fields for much of his young life. Although short like most Rashemi, there is a dark beauty about the young man. When he speaks he seems educated, but he is not loud or forceful in manner.
Kerdic son of Cynric and Nerys: Greyfox, Morninglordian, Axe-Human.


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Re: A great fortune is a great slavery - Shausek Dyengothra
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2019, 08:13:56 PM »
Hearth and Home

"I am tired, father." Helmaisa whined, sluggishly picking up her half of the basket again. Shausak was more diligent than his sister, and had already hefted his side back up.

"Hush, Hel. There's still an hour of light left." Said their father, already lifting his sickle to cut yet more wheat and fill this basket to the brim. There was a wiry strength about him, his copper, sun-drenched skin firm like old leather. Despite the hardships of Rashemi life, Shausak had never seen his father waver in sickness.

It was more like half an hour until their father called an end to work, the sun's amber rays gave way to dusk's growing gloom as they walked back to the little barn by the cottage. The trio would be there until dinner, bundling the stalks of wheat to divide them between the produce for their masters, and that they could keep themselves.  The Nathskuld family was not especially kind to its serfs, but nor was it especially cruel, and in truth beyond yielding up the lion's share of the produce of the land, Borivis Dyengothra and his family saw little of them.

Dinner that night was dolma, roasted peppers stuffed with mashed corn and nuts, accompanied by goats cheese and washed down with goats milk. Shausak ate eagerly, giving himself a moustache of milk.

"I am too tired to work tomorrow. I think I'll go and play in the stream instead." Said Helmaisa nonchalantly, reaching for the cheese. Borivis laughed, a fond look at his daughter as he shook his head. But Chathi tutted, as she stood to get a rag to wipe Shausak's face. She had less patience with her daughter's dreaming. "You're too old to think like that, Hel. You're nearly ten. You work. Even your little brother works, he's old enough. We all are at harvest."

Borivis laughed, mirth twinkling in his dark eyes as he looked over at his wife fussing over Shausak, who held his face up obediently. "And the boy is old enough to wipe his own face, Chat." He said in a voice like honeyed tea.

Chathi's face twisted at his words; or perhaps the use of her pet name, but the fondness in her eyes belied her apparent annoyance. "Still. If you aren't going to the fields tomorrow, you'll stay here with me to thresh the wheat. Your choice, Hel."

Shausak's sister rolled her eyes dramatically, tossing her wild hair. "I'll go with father." She said, as she hopped down off her chair, cheese in hand, to go and lounge by the hearth. Shausak hurried after her. Story time always came after dinner, and it was mother's turn tonight. She always told the best ones.
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Re: A great fortune is a great slavery - Shausek Dyengothra
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2019, 05:35:20 PM »
Tall Tales

"We won't wait for you!"Helmaisa's voice was stern and petulant in one, a strange combination of childhood and womanhood. Just like she was herself, now she was seventeen.

"We'll wait, but you had best get moving, Shausek." Said his father as he tied the harness tonto the goat. Shausek grunted as he loaded the second bail onto the sledge. "It's not far, Da. I'll be back before you set out."

An abhaebstzan troupe of puppeteers was performing today at the monthly market, and the whole family was going to spend the afternoon there. Beforehand, though, Shausek had a delivery to make.

The autumn sun was bright as he took the trail that passed close to the Ulnoga Cottage. Medik Ulnoga and his family lived further out of town than Borivis Dyengothra, on the edge of wide pastureland where he herded goats. Nisami Ulnoga was sat on the fence alongside the track, legs swinging in the sun, as he waited for Shausek. Nisami was shorter and stockier than Shausek, despite being the same age, and was brown as a nut from long days of herding.

"Shau!" He said, hopping off his perch. "About time."

"I'm early" Shausek lied with a wide smile. "Where are these going?"

The Ulnoga had a small shed to the side of their cottage where hay for the winter was stored. The two bails were heavy, but Nisami and Shausek weren't boys anymore, even if they weren't men. Soon the two friends were patting each other's backs andcongratulating themselves on their grown-up strength.

"I don't know why you're both so smug. You aren't done." A female voice cut through their congratulations. Yuldra, Nisami's sister, leaned on the doorframe, her wild hair tied into a pony tail down her back and her lips formed into a mocking smirk. She was a year older than the boys and while they had all played together since children, recently she'ed...changed.

"What are you talking about, Yul" Said Nisami, frustrated.

"Papa wants all the hay in here up in the winter shelter. He will give Shausek Dyengothra cheese in return for him helping with his sled." Yuldra looked at Shausek. "Hello Shausek Dyengothra."

"Hello" Said Shausek. "Of course I'll help." He smiled. He felt silly for smiling.

The winter shelter was up at the top of the pasture It took three trips to get all the hay up there, even with both of them and Shausek's sled. It was tiring and thirsty work, and the sun was high in the sky when they were done.

"I'm late" Said Shausek mournfully, wiping his brow. "You're going to the  abhaebstza?" Asked Nisami, jealousy in his tone. "Lucky. I've gotta be on the pasture this afternoon."

"Yeah, but I'll have to..."

"Shausek Dyengothra! Are all your family as hard workers as you? I wanted the hay moved tomorrow, and you do it straight away?" Medik Ulnoga was as short and stocky as his son, his eyes like chocolate and his white teeth visible through his mirthful smile. He approached with Yuldra, who bore a beaker of water.

"But Yuldra..." Shausek answered helplessly.

"Oh. Are you trying to impress me?" Teased Medik, rewarding Shausek's blush with a hearty laugh.

"I may have explained it wrong by mistake, Papa" Said Yuldra. "You aren't going to get in trouble, are you, Shausek Dyengothra?" She added innocently.

"Yes!" He exclaimed, frustrated.

"Oh no, Papa, let me go and explain what happened. This is all my fault...I guess I will just come back here and watch the fields with Nisami, while you all set off for the abhaebstza."

It was a good act, to be honest, and Shausek fell for it. "Yuldra, you could walk to the  abhaebstza with us, I am sure."

Yuldra smiled brightly at Shausek. "Papa?"

Something made Medik laugh again. "Go on, Yul. Just be back before dark."

Walking down the trail back home, Shausek gave a sidelong glance at Yuldra, and caught her giving him the same. He looked away, cheeks flushing, and smiled.

She had changed, indeed.
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Re: A great fortune is a great slavery - Shausek Dyengothra
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2019, 03:53:25 PM »
In the Moment

She came, as she promised. The moonlight made her raven hair shine as it hung over her shoulders, tied in a long, pretty braid. She wore her best kaftan, lined in deep dark red that echoed her lips. Her dark eyes glinted with curiosity as Shausek ceased his pacing and looked towards her with a sudden smile.

“You look nice.” he said, and cursed himself silently. Yuldra laughed, stalking towards him. “Why did you bring me here, Shausek Dyengothra?”

The seconds before he answered stretched long in his mind, but they weren't silent. No, the babble of the stream and the rustle of leaves stirred by the evening breeze rang loud in his heart, mocking him for his hesitation. She had changed even more in the months since that autumn afternoon, but so had he, dammit. “I have some quøvusp.” He said, with more confidence than he felt. “Wanna try it?”

Yuldra's eyes widened in surprise, and a smile broke on her lips. Quøvusp was expensive and used in moments of great importance. Even the tiny pouch Shausek displayed proudly represented a substantial amount of begging from his parents and odd jobs for neighbouring cottages. “I don't have a pipe” he said as they sat by the little fire he had built. “So we'll have to burn it in a bowl.” Yuldra nodded, scooting closer.

Shausek's efforts over the summer had bought three and a half small, tuber like roots. They looked tiny, lying in the clay bowl he had brought. “What do we do?” Yuldra asked, hesitantly. “Breathe deeply.” Shausek replied as if this was the thousandth time he had done this, not the first. He poked the fire with a stick, setting fire to the end before using it to burn the fruits of his labour. The two of them hunched over the bowl, careful not to bang heads, sniffing and snuffling like tracker dogs following a trail. Naturally, it didn't do much, but in their own minds it did, and that was all the excuse they needed.

They lay back, watching the stars twinkle up above, and they spoke of this and that; hopes and dreams of the future, and fond memories of the past. They laughed and teased, and tiptoed closer towards the moment.

Shausek lay on his side, resting his cheek on his palm, looking down at Yuldra during a lull in the conversation. She looked up at him, shifting a bit to meet his gaze. She tore a blade of grass out of the ground and reached up with it, tickling his nose. “What are you thinking about, Shausek Dyengothra?” She asked, as he twitched away, a snuffle. He held his breath to stop a sneeze as Yuldra's laughter rang out into the air, and into his heart.

When he looked back to answer, it wasn't with words. She met him halfway, their lips meeting tentatively.

It felt like they'd waited too long.

It felt like this was the thousandth time, not the first.

It felt like nothing mattered but this moment.

It felt like a truth revealed.

It felt like summer's heat and winter's chill.

It felt right.

Their lips parted, his eyes opening first. Yuldra's smile enchanted him, and he gazed down at her. “Mm. Shausek Dyengothra” She said fondly, and her eyes flickered open.

The fear swept over her instantly, and she swatted aside Shausek's hand on her cheek. “What?” He asked, confused. “Yul, what?” Yet her response was only to push him away from her, and scrabble to her feet. On his knees, Shausek looked up at Yuldra, stunned, as she clasped a hand over her mouth, eyes boring into him.

Finally he saw it, the motes of light orbiting around him, the glow, even as both faded. He knew it was magic, just as he knew it was born from him. “Yul...” He said, standing, reaching out to her.

“Stay away from me!” Yuldra shrieked, stepping backwards. He stepped closer, panic in his own voice. “Yul, quiet! Let me..!” His hand reached for her, and she whirled, turning to flee. She had only moved a step before she tripped on some root or stone, and crashed into one of the bushes. “Yul!” he cried, running to her side, trying to help her out. Yuldra screamed like a wildcat, clawing at him to drive him off, her kaftan torn by the sharp thorns. Already it was stained read from where the skin underneath had been cut.

Shausek backed away, tears in his eyes as Yuldra rose, radiating fear and hate. As she turned to flee, she spat the last word of venom at him.


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Re: A great fortune is a great slavery - Shausek Dyengothra
« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2019, 02:37:22 PM »
A Dish Served Hot

Shausek cowered behind the door, clutching onto his sister. "I'm sorry Hel, I'm sorry Hel." He kept repeating, but her only response was a whimper, overwhelmed by the fury she could hear outside.

"Give him up, Borivis." Snarled a gravelly, sharp voice laced with anger. Rolkhun Ulnoga, Yuldra's oldest brother. He was rarely seen around these days, spending most of his time in Sly-Var proper, doing things outside the Lawgiver's sight.

"When you're calm." Shausek's sire replied evenly. He imagined his father standing tall like an oak, and the anger of Yuldra's being merely a wind in his branches.

"Calm?" exclaimed Rolkhun. "Calm? Why you..."

Another voice. Less furious, but no less resolved. "Shausek tried to bewitch our sister, Borivis. We aren't going anywhere until we've looked him in the eye." This was Anzar, Yuldra's middle brother, closer to Rolkhun in age than the girl.

"I've spoken to your father. We're due to meet man to man tonight to resolve this." His father remained calm. "Lets leave this until tonight, when the fires have died down a bit, and we can work things out."

A silence. It drew on. Helmaisa held her breath.

Finally, the silence broke. Anzar's voice. "Fine." There was a shuffling of feet, growing quieter. Shausek sighed, relief pouring over him.

He could hear mother whispering to father, but he couldn't make out the words.

Then suddenly, Rolkhun's voice rang out. Further away than before and, it seems, directed at one of his brothers. "...bastard speaks like Yul's a liar."

Footsteps approach. Fast and heavy. "Out of the way! I'm done with your words Dyengothra!" Rolkhun again, angry. "Out of the way, I said."

"No, wai..." His mother said, before she let out a strange cry, a squawk of surprised. There were scuffling footsteps. The door rattled.

"Rolk! Wait!" A high pitched voice called. Nisami, Yul's youngest brother, Shausek's friend.

"That's my wife!" Said Shausek's father. A thudding, slapping sound. The door clattered again, and was silent. Someone growled, feral and menacing. More footsteps approached. "You shouldn't have done that, Borivis." Anzar's voice, anger in it.

More shuffling footsteps. More thuds. "Stop it! Stop it!" Shausek's mother pleaded.

Something fell heavily against the door. Helmaisa screamed, twisting free of his grip to run across to the other side of the cottage and hide behind the table. More thuds, and a deep groan of pain. Rolkhun's voice was pure fire. "Hit me would you?" Thud. "Hit me to defend your little rapist?" Thud, thud. "Don't get up!" Shouted Anzar. Thud, thud. Grunt. Grunt.

"Scream, damn you!" Shouted Rolkhun.

"Don't!" Shouted Nisami. "You'll kill him!"

There was a sickening crunch. The wail that left his father's lips chilled Shausek to the core, but not as much as the sobs that followed.

"Bor!" His mother shrieked. "Bor!"

"I think thats enough, Rolk." Anzar said. There was a final thud, and the sobbing stopped. "Now it is" said Rolkhun.

Footsteps moved away, leaving only the sounds of his mother's despair.
Kerdic son of Cynric and Nerys: Greyfox, Morninglordian, Axe-Human.