A new era in original, fantasy RP. Four populated nations surround the ruins at the center of the known world - each with their own, strong culture. This original tale is woven around lush forests, dangerous city slums, raging seas, and endless valleys. A writer's greatest adventure is an application away.
Be it advanced technology, a knightly order, the way of a hunter, or the strength of a gang as your shield.. the land's new-born darkness will tear away at anything in its path. Fight for the gods? Fight for you nation? Fight for yourself?
WHO WILL YOU BLAME.
That's right. Be wary. Each thread the desecrants show up in will have a maximum amount of players allowed to enter to fight it. Though they may not be defeated right away, you might make them think twice about facing mankind... and could very well find them somewhere else in the world later on trying to get better luck.
A competition has been set up to create your very own NPCs! Create up to five for around the world of From Dust and you have a chance to get them accepted into the site's beastiary! This expands on our member-created base as an original site, so have at it!
Post by Gareth MacKay on Sept 2, 2014 19:24:00 GMT -6
In dark nights when he felt compelled to contemplate his own existence, Gareth had toyed with the notion of religion. He knew his history. Brynne had brought down a violent apocalypse upon the Empire and turned it into the howling, empty mausoleum that it was today. She had killed Borim—a brother in arms—with her own blade and left his orphaned country sealed behind spell and stone for generations. But she was supposed to be a kind and caring goddess who looked upon her children lovingly. Was it divine apathy or her own subconscious violence that manifested themselves in Gareth’s flames? He had the capacity to heal—but he had a greater potential to destroy. His “gift” had been the medium of his own misfortune and then it was the reason why he could have survived. The nights were cold and wet but his fire kept him warm.
Was that what this speaker was? Warmth without a fire? Had Brynne given her children capacity for war because she could no longer stand the warm splattering of blood across a blade? Of pyres that burned through the night clearing the dead from the altar of war so that new sacrifices could feed the worms?
Grayson seemed so innocent but Brynne was not innocent but yet she had her priests preach peace and innocence in direct contradiction to how she had prepared her soldiers for war. Gareth was not innocent. He never would be and he did not think he ever was. But Gareth knew in his violence was the capacity for righteousness. He stumbled around in darkness, moving toward that serenity because it was the only light that he could see around himself. He hated Brynne because of what she did to him and other times he loved her for it. He struggled for acceptance from his god for outwardly being that shameful manifestation of malformed anger. Violence without purpose. This speaker spat in the face of the reconciliation of his violence and Brynne’s promise of inner peace because in Grayson’s innocence Gareth could only see his rejection. Grayson was what Brynne wanted her soldiers to see. Gareth always supposed he was what a soldier had to be.
Brynne’s prodigal son was in front of him now. He stared from beneath Grayson’s shadow.
Gareth could feel himself beginning to tear up. He brought his thumb and forefinger to his eyes and brought them across his face and to his nose. He never trusted people. Certainly never someone who would make such a bold claim. There was a sincerity to the words that Gareth could not quantify that just seemed to make sense to him. It was strange—feeling this weak and in awe all at once. He was the closest he would ever be to his goddess and he could not think of anything to say. Gareth drew his sword and started chopping at the sand as if he could cut through to the core of it all and was screaming while he did it. Half in frustration, half in catharsis.
He stopped screaming and chopping and let his sword lay with its blade in the sand before he fell to his knees in front of Grayson and looked at the speaker, hand still coiled around the grip of his weapon as if his arm would fall off otherwise. His eyes were red and bloodshot and looked up at him for guidance. Support. Anything. He did not know what to say. Gareth sat there in a pregnant silence before marshalling the ability to speak, “Why did she do this to me?”
Grayson blinked, blue eyes wide as he stared at Gareth during the man's episode. The sword was unsheathed, and for a moment, Grayson thought it was to be used on him. Taking several steps back, he was both shocked and relieved to see Gareth start to hack away at the ground beneath him, taking out... anger. Anger? Towards Brynne? But... but why would anyone ever be angry with her? She was kind, compassionate... She loved all of the people in her nation equally and unconditionally.
Gareth's scream cut the young Speaker to the bone, chilling him immediately. He didn't understand this kind of cold. Or this kind of anguish. What was he supposed to do? Leave the man be to dwell in his own misery? No, he was supposed to help. He was Brynne's Speaker... but he didn't know what he was supposed to do now.
Why did she do this to me?
Silence. What? Minutes passed. "I do not know..." he said at long last, bright eyes searching Gareth's bloodshot gaze. "She...she does not give you what you cannot handle." Brynne was love and life and everything beautiful - what could this man think she had done to him to warrent this kind of reaction?
The young Speaker took a step towards the man, hesitant. Brynne hadn't prepared him for this... His eyes remained on the man as he slowly lowered himself to the ground, crossing his legs beneath him, joining Gareth in his time of need. "...I am sorry that I do not know," he said softly, mindlessly doodling in the dirt with a finger as his other hand cupped his cheek, propped up on his elbow. He appeared much more human in this pose and not as intimidating as he looked when carrying himself with a straight back and lifted chin.
After a couple of moments, his eyes met Gareth's. "What gift did she give you?"
Post by Gareth MacKay on Sept 6, 2014 21:03:58 GMT -6
Nothing that he could handle? Gareth’s earliest memories were crawling, screaming, and crying out of an ashen cairn. His face was blackened from soot and his eyes burning. He couldn’t grasp the concept of what had happened then, and it was only later when he had begun to realize his abilities did he understand the depth. Had he killed his parents the way he killed Jackson? Did he even have parents, or was he fantastically pulled from the aether and materialized in the wake of an inferno? The technical imperfections of his powers were hilariously executed. His protection from fire—his or any other—relied upon his sweat instead of being some kind of constitutive bulwark. This led to the scars that he obsessively kept covered. They had been physically healed for years.
From underneath his tears his eyes contorted into a muddled mixture of anger and confusion and sadness. He held his right palm face up and could feel sweat creep out from under his skin into his rags. A fireball materialized in his hand and he stared at it for a moment much the same way that a moth stares at a flame before suffocating it with his other hand. “I can make fire. I can cauterize wounds with it without leaving scars, but it is more useful if I use it to fight.” Gareth’s words felt like safety nets and calmed him down but he could feel his rage building again as he continued speaking, “I have always had it. Even as a child I have always had it.” Gareth leaned over and stood on one knee and grabbed Grayson’s lapel forcefully, “Why would she give that kind of ability to a child? Answer that question, Speaker.” His grip was soggy still from the water and now from the sweat. Sand clung to his exposed knee. Stars began peeking out from behind the giant purple curtain. The waxing moon was half full and still wrestling significance away from the trailing daylight.
The silence that hung between them as Grayson's last words drifted into the atmosphere was suffocating. Grayson could feel the tension pressing in all around him. He didn't want to be here anymore, but he knew that it was his job to sit and talk to the people of Hryst. Problems, concerns, comments, he had to listen to them all. That's what his job was, as Brynne's Speaker. He was the mediator. He spoke to the people, then he spoke to the deity.
Why didn't the gods talk to their people themselves? Grayson quickly shook that thought from his mind. Wasn't right for him to think such a thing about a goddess as loving and compassionate as Brynne.
Flame formed in the palm of Gareth's hand, and the young Speaker found himself sitting up straighter, leaning away from the fire. It reflected in his bright eyes as he stared at it for a moment before looking past it. Gareth was staring into the flame as well, his other hand coming to meet it, extinguishing the fire as quickly as he had created it. I can made fire. The man explained his abilities a bit, and Grayson listened, like he was supposed to. Talking seemed to help calm Gareth down, and Gray was thankful for that. He didn't know how to handle violence...
He mentioned that he'd had his abilities even when he had been a child, and something clicked in Grayson's mind. That wasn't right... Abilities were given when asked, not something a person was born with - was it? That's what he thought Brynne had said to him.
Before he had the chance to say this to Gareth, the man was on a knee, closer to the young Speaker than he would have liked, and had a fistful of his shirt clasped tightly in a shaking fist. Why would she give that kind of ability to a child? Answer that question, Speaker.
Grayson stared into Gareth's eyes, shaking his head. This wasn't something he was okay with. He wanted to get away from this man, but couldn't. Gareth had a hold of him. "I cannot answer what I do not know," he said. "Let go of me!"
Post by Gareth MacKay on Sept 6, 2014 23:31:03 GMT -6
Grayson’s words were divorced from meaning. Gareth held his shirt in a tight clutch. His eyes were locked onto Grayson’s. Then he let go. Gareth shook his head and grunted. He stood up and looked down at Grayson. His eyes were narrowed and hard and defiant of the idea that this man could actually speak for Brynne. “You’re a shitty speaker. Either that or Brynne is a shitty goddess.” His words were born of frustration and anger and neglect. He wanted to know the reason for his troubles. He wanted there to be some deep, existential answer for all of his suffering so that it would be worthwhile. But there wasn’t. He was a speck. His own significance was dwarfed by the sky and by the ocean and even by the inept speaker in front of him.
He bent down and grabbed the sword that lie in the sand and sheathed it. He hardened his face and he dried his tears because this man could not help him with his problems. People say that they could help you but they inevitably fail and Gareth supposed they always would because they have no personal stake in it all.
Gareth stood looking at Grayson. The air was thick with salt and tension and Gareth relished the idea of fighting now. He did not want answers. He wanted to punch something hard and repetitively. In the distance Gareth heard the last of the ship workers leaving for the day. They would go back into normal pubs with normal families and then wake up to a normal morning and he hated them and loved them for it. They would have to deal with things like struggling because of the frozen waters or gangs and thieves or corrupt officials but those were their problems. He had not stake in it all. Sometimes he felt like a season in Hryst. He moved through the country but without really knowing why and soon he would be in Domhan Tir or hiding among the Deadsands again. But now he had the speaker for the beloved Brynne in front of him and Gareth felt as if he were still a part of the country even though this speaker were stupid and childish and unhelpful in every sense of the word.
After too long a pause, Gareth released his shirt, climbing to his feet and glaring down at Grayson. Gray didn't bother looking up, he could feel the heat of the man's stare. You're a shitty speaker. His shoulders sagged. He knew that... He knew that he wasn't good at what he had been created to do. He was too young and too new to be expected to know the answers to questions like what Gareth was asking.
He knew what that word meant, too. Shitty. He'd heard it quite a bit at the docks, or in his wanderings around Hryst. It was used to describe fish, people, situations, and the way people sometimes felt. But he'd never had it used to describe him before now.
Either that or Brynne is a shitty goddess.
Grayson froze, blue eyes darkening to match that of the navy-colored inky darkness above them. His jaw clenched tight, and as Gareth bent to pick up his weapon, Grayson pushed himself to his feet, keeping his face towards the ground. He didn't know anger like this. He'd never been this upset about something before. His shadow showed the outline of the young Speaker, but also something that not many were able to stand witness to - the outline of large ethereal wings that seemed to extinguish the remaining light from the night sky and the lamps and lights around them.
Two long strides put Grayson only inches from Gareth's face, hands clamped firmly down on the man's shoulders. "Do not speak of Brynne like that," he hissed through clenched teeth. Bracing himself, the young Speaker shoved Gareth backwards, easily knocking the man off balance, sending him at least several yards back. "You know nothing of what she does for you, for everyone!"
He walked towards Gareth, anger burning in his eyes, his hands balled into fists. "Take it back!"
Post by Gareth MacKay on Sept 7, 2014 17:39:06 GMT -6
Dark came preternaturally quickly to their small section of the beach. Gareth’s words had wounded Grayson’s idyllic love for Brynne. Good. Grayson’s shadow was befitting of his title—seeing the wings spread out caused Gareth’s heart to flutter. He had invoked the wrath of a speaker and he had no plans on stopping it because he wanted to relish the storm. This speaker gave him no peace as to why he was gifted or the meaning of his existence so instead he would find ephemeral peace the way Gareth usually found it--by trying to beat the piss out of someone.
Grayson moved at Gareth before Gareth had any chance to react, but instead of assuming responsibility for the first blow Grayson grabbed his shoulders. And then Grayson threatened Gareth and finally attacked him. The push did not feel like an expression of anger or violence to Gareth, but of a fundamental rejection of his words. That didn’t change how strong it was. Originally Gareth had associated his child-like nature with child-like strength but he now saw that there was no comparison to be made between the two. Gareth fell backwards but controlled his collision with the ground. He landed on his left shoulder and smacked his left hand down onto the sand to help absorb the impact. His back was covered in sand that he began inadvertently shaking off as he scrambled to his feet. And Grayson continued at Gareth.
“I know plenty about what she did for me. Fuck you.” He was consumed by his own imperfections, sometimes. The most apparent was his scars and Gareth wasn't going to be forgiving Brynne for cursing him with orphanhood and ostracization. She wasn’t perfect and Gareth seemed to focus more on Brynne’s failures than he ever did her successes. Now fully on his feet and Grayson within a few feet Gareth hurled himself at the speaker with his eyes small and hard and his arms wide and tensed and ready to tackle Grayson down into the dirt with the rest of Hryst. He could feel his sweat starting to flow superfluously as his body Pavlovianly associated the adrenaline of combat with the need to begin hurling fireballs. He would not do that, though. There was no danger of dying—yet. In the meantime they would vent and they would fight with their fists in a priapic debate over the merits of their goddess’s worship.
Anyone left on the docks by this point stared at a small section of the shoreline, the only section that appeared to be darker than the night itself. They moved away from the two men. Gareth was the only one who knew that it was a Speaker's doing, and not a change in the night weather that created this inky darkness.
He didn't understand why he was so angry, but nobody had ever dared disrespect Brynne in his presence. Not when they knew that her Speaker was nearby. Since the incident with Dym, Grayson didn't speak of who - or what - he was very often. There were a couple of mortals that knew what he was, but he didn't allow anyone else to learn about it. He had abilities, easily disguised as a mortal.
Cold blue eyes watched Gareth scramble to his feet. He thought he could stand the likes of a Speaker? I know plenty about what she did for me. Fuck you.
Grayson stopped moving as the man's insults began to target the young Speaker instead of the goddess of Hryst. His jaw was clenched so tight it was starting to hurt, and his fists slowly relaxed, pulse calming. He wasn't supposed to fight Brynne's people...
Gareth, however, had other plans, apparent when he dropped a shoulder and charged at Grayson. Taking a breath, Grayson stepped to the side, catching the man by his arm and tossing him across the beach. It was simple, and took almost no effort on Grayson's part. Now that the disrespect had been redirected to him instead of Brynne, he wasn't feeling nearly as angry as he had before. "You should stop," he said, his voice devoid of emotion.
Post by Gareth MacKay on Sept 9, 2014 22:25:21 GMT -6
Gareth’s body came to a halt through the sand. It covered his chest and face like camouflage. A grainy glob came rocketing out of his mouth. And another. The impact was softened but the littoral mud was hard and it still hurt. He saw the waves roll over his hands and his knees as he raised himself onto them. His bandages were wet and muddy. They sagged. Gareth tore at them as if tearing at burning flesh and left two dissociated strands hanging down from his neck, freeing his face. The left half of his face was mauled by an uneven burn scar that wrapped around his eye and down that side of the face. It was large. It was fat. It was unseemly. Gareth rose and turned around to face Grayson again.
“Because you have all the fucking answers, don’t you? Fight me like a damn man. If you’re not going to tell me anything useful then at least fight me like a damn man,” he growled. His voice was low and rough. Grayson had a luxury of being reborn into innocence but Gareth did not. Worth was proven with bloody faces and bloodier knuckles. Happiness came with the caveat of sore ribs black eyes. Gareth took off his sword and sheathe and threw it to the side, far away from the water. His boots clopped out of the small waves as he walked toward Grayson. He kept his arms at his sides and walked until he was only inches away from Grayson’s face, “Fight me.” His whispered it to Grayson, but it was no secret what Gareth wanted to illicit.
The realization hit harder than him hitting the ground. He suppressed a smirk and kept his mouth twisted down in anger.
“Or did your bitch of a goddess forget to give you balls?”
Because you have all the fucking answers, don't you? Grayson's eyes fell to the sand at his feet, the darkness enveloping him like a blanket. He didn't have answers for anything, anything at all. He wasn't a good fit to be Brynne's Speaker. He didn't know what to do, he didn't know what to say.... His heart ached to have her here with him, but he knew that she was dealing with the loss of one of their own. He couldn't call to her now. She was hurting... he couldn't bother her now...
Gareth wanted a fight. If you're not going to tell me anything useful then at least fight me like a damn man. He shook his head slowly. "That's not me..." he said before the man in front of him tossed his weapon to the side. Fight me. This wasn't him. This wasn't what he was supposed to do. "No."
He had been thrust into being a Speaker from the exact moment of his creation. No training, no warning, just a decree to watch over the people of Hryst. He could tell Gareth that he'd talk to Brynne and get back to him about the answers that he so passionately sought after... but what good would that do?
The young Speaker's shoulders dropped again. He was done. He didn't know what to do. He glanced up at Gareth's enraged and scarred face, the marring not having an effect on him. "I am sorry..." he said as Gareth spouted off, Or did your bitch of a goddess forget to give you balls?
He clenched his jaw, eyes squeezing shut as he repressed the anger welling up inside of him.