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  • Beqanna

    version 22: awakening

    COTY

    OCEANE -- Year 208

    QOTY

    "Because if she had not met him, she knew she would have been searching her whole life for the piece that he filled her heart with." -- Eva, written by Shelbi


    [private]  I've seen monsters chasing dreams; Chasity
    #1

    IT'S NOT POWER THAT MAKES YOU THE STRONGEST

    This world has changed irrevocably. There are bright and beautiful things here, things that make her smile, but  it is not her world anymore. Already once she has grown old and died, having lived a long (though not peaceful) life beforehand. Now she wonders how long she will be tethered to the new Beqanna; the new magic in her veins she suspects will keep her alive for as long as she wants, but the grulla mare isn’t sure how long she wants that to be.

    It won’t be an extraordinarily short time – she has created children in this brave new world, and she will not abandon them before they are grown to their adulthoods. Today she’s left them with their father, and gone a-wandering. There are a few places which have not changed over the decades she was dead, and she takes comfort in them. The Meadow wasn’t a fun place in the winter, but now that spring has taken the world firmly in her grip, it’s pleasant enough to roam the tall grasses.

    The first time, her eyes skip over the other mare without pause. She walks by at a distance, her mind a million miles away, but something tugs at her heart. The grulla mare turns around, brown eyes scanning the sparsely scattered crowd, and settle after a moment on the gray mare she’d walked by before. Her heart is pounding before she steps forward, because that is not a face she could ever forget. It doesn’t make sense – Chasity should have been dead these many years as well – but she would not be the only one to have crossed the border from death to life. Many had crossed when the barriers fell; just because it has been a year and Nikkai had not encountered a loved one doesn’t mean she never would.

    “Chasity?” she almost stumbles in her hurry to approach, but slows at the last second, pulling up a few feet from her friend. What if she’s wrong? What if she’s crazy?

    A lifetime passes in a moment, a million memories, and a rush of sincere affection that has to show in even the temperamental Nikkai’s face. Chasity was a friend – and one of the Queens that Nikkai had served faithfully. The Queen who had taken her prickly and hot tempered General and left her in charge of a Kingdom. It had changed her life (made her a better person), but it had never seemed worth actually losing the friends who had come and gone before her.

    She isn’t sure what else to say, really. Where does one even begin, after all this time?

    Nikkai



    Chasity
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    #2
    '"Nikkai gives her word on training the army, and for this she is grateful, but her last words are those that are truly precious to her. She embraces the mare at once, and as she breathes a sigh of relief against her neck, at last, the beginning of a smile returns to her lips. “Thank you Nikkai, thank you,” she murmurs against her ashen coat. “You haven’t any idea how much this means to me.” And as she draws away from her touch, the loyalty in their eyes are akin. Together they will accomplish. It seems that dark times are threatening to weigh upon the world, and they may well be about to become lost in the midst of those years—but where there is love there is hope.” – Chasity, 2006.

    She led her kingdom with kindness and grace, but that wasn’t enough when storm-clouds settled over the land. It started with a whisper. A rumour of battle between neighbouring kingdoms. The whispers became stronger and louder, until they became a chorus of fear, and then, a wild roar. The darkness of those days weighed upon Chasity’s heart, and she was afraid she would lose herself to it. And so, she passed her throne to the most competent warrior she ever knew. Nikkai.

    No blood was spilt in the waterfalls in the weeks that followed, of that Chasity is certain. She ensured her kingdom was safe before heading into the horizon. What happened after… she is now piecing together the story through the fragments that remain.

    She has, at least, found some solace in the Meadow.

    Chasity stands in the open field, the long grass tickling her belly, and breaths the smell of damp earth and honeydew. She can hear the merry chatter of the bluebirds in the trees, and it fills her heart with a bittersweet joy. The Meadow is one of the remaining pieces of her old world. She watches a kaleidoscope of butterflies fluttering from flower to flower, remembering when she used to dance with them wild and carefree, some many moons and worlds ago.

    Chasity?

    She startles, her own name foreign to her, unable to recall the last time it was spoken. A mare rushes towards her, stumbling, and Chasity finds her breath knocked from her lungs. She could never forget that face, those hardened eyes. Her General, her Queen—her friend.

    “Nikkai…” 

    For a moment she feels frozen. They stand together, silent. Unspoken memories dance between them, as affection shines in her old friend’s eyes. And suddenly, for the first time since she found herself lost in this upside-down world, all of the strength and bravery that Chasity had used to glue herself together begins to melt away at the seams.

    “Oh Nikkai.”

    She closes the distance between them, nestling her weary head into the mare’s mane in a quiet embrace. She softens into the warmth of her skin, closing her eyes and steadying her racing heart.

    “I thought there was nothing left,” she confides to the mare quietly, her voice quaking. “They told me that our kingdom was gone. But you… you’re still here.”

    She draws away from the mare, her eyes damp and brimming with questions. How did she get here? How long has it been? Why can’t she remember? Why? But for the first time in some many days, she knows that now, she will be okay. After all: where there is love there is hope.
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    #3

    IT'S NOT POWER THAT MAKES YOU THE STRONGEST

    She’s not crazy. That offers some relief, which washes over her when the other mare turns and there is not rejection, but recognition. The grulla mare is almost weak with the relief, feeling it so strongly that she is almost mortal again, rather than this half-magic creature she has been in the new world. The memories are drawn up from the very depths of her heart, things that happened a century ago, dulled by time and nobody to share them with. With one of her first and dearest friends standing here, it’s as if it was yesterday.

    Nikkai leans into the embrace that Chasity is offering, understanding well that perhaps her friend needs the reassurance that the grulla mare had no one to offer her when she had stumbled back across the void from death to life. It is not an easy transition, and Chasity does not seem to have the strange new magic thrumming in her veins and giving her a reason to go on. She had only her own strength, and that Nikkai admires. The purpose of the magic had not allowed her to falter in the beginning when faltering seemed like a good idea – so now they can stand together.

    “There is very little left,” she says quietly when they draw apart. Some might see it as a nearly brutal honesty, but Chasity would expect nothing less from Nikkai. It is a rare time when she is less than frank, even when the truth is uncomfortable. “The lands have been reshaped, and the Kingdoms are no more. Some common lands remain, and a few herds that seem to have been arbitrarily brought back to be settled.” Nikkai’s birthplace is amongst them, with its rolling fields of flowers, but she knows that is not the land which she should be sharing with Chasity. Still, she hesitates a moment, because the story is so strange.

    “When I came back from death, I was not the same. Somehow, I had been gifted with a magic, though it was not mine to keep.” She glances at Chasity, hoping not to find disbelief in her face (that might hurt more than she could stand), and then goes on. “I had to gift it to one of the new Kingdoms. The place is called Tephra, and the people are not my people, not really. But, Chasity…” her breath catches for a moment, her normally cynical eyes soft with some mixture of wonder and hope. “The magic took a familiar form. It’s our waterfall, flowing again in a new age.”

    Nikkai



    Chasity (fun story, it’s been something like 137 BQ years since 2006 lmao)
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    #4
    She knows there is magic in the world. Sometimes she is certain that she can feel it pulsing deep beneath the earth, its secrets whispered between the rustle of leaves. She listens to stories of fairies and enchantments and captures them, holds them close to her heart.

    She should be enchanted by Nikkai’s words. She hears her speak of the magic that was gifted to her and how from it, their beloved waterfall was reborn. It is still here! She can watch rainbows dance across the cascading waters one more. The beginnings of a smile touches her lips, but it quickly fades. Though she should be filled with wonder and awe, she finds herself shaken. The same words echo through her troubled mind. When I came back from death.

    “You died?” she whispers.

    Her eyes are filled with concern as she brushes her muzzle tentatively against her friend’s jaw, feeling flesh and bone, reminding herself that she is solid and real. How long has it been since she last saw the dear warrior? She traces timelines in her mind.

    Chasity was not young when she left the falls. She lived a long and beautiful life under the spell of the rushing waters. She still remembers the day that she left Beqanna, saddened but hopeful for retirement with her dearheart at her side. They had plans to explore foreign lands, to dance through endless plains and sleep entwined under the shimmering stars. And yet when she tries to think of her time with her partner beyond the horizon, there is emptiness.

    When I came back from death.

    The words call to her, but she holds them back as she wonders how she ended up in these transformed lands alone. She would never have abandoned The Maker, nor would he have left her side. Her heart aches and she misses him, the faithful stallion with the goofy grin.

    She concedes that she cannot remember what happened in the years after they left her kingdom. There is nothing, no memories until she found herself just some weeks ago in this upside-down world on her own. Blackness.

    She cannot ignore the pull of those words any longer.

    “How long?” she asks, her voice catching in her throat. “How long has it been?” And then, her heart pounding so furiously in her chest she can barely hear, “Nikkai, I don’t think I’m meant to be here.”

    CHASITY

    listen to the birds sing softly.



    LOL and I thought 14 human years made me feel old!
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