Author Topic: 07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye  (Read 1667 times)

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Offline Dray

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« on: November 22, 2011, 01:11:56 PM »

[color=#00ff00](OOC: This is a continuation of 2127.07.25 – A Girl in Hell)[/color]

 

 

The myriad of stairwells, corridors, and passages became a dizzying frenzy as Judge Nathaniel Criss guided the attorney, Nataska Marks, and her charge, Shannon Auvryndyr, through the majestic cathedral. Shannon stared at the back of the Judges’ armored feet as they followed. Lost in her own thoughts, she ignored all the artistic creativity of the Faith of Kaine which was abundant around her.

 

 

They had just departed her parents’ trial. The remainder of which had left Shannon dazed and in emotional confusion. For it was after her attorneys’ warning that Shannon had expected to be challenged by Fresenius and his cohorts. She was terrified that they were going to throw angry words of false accusations and blasphemy at her while her father looked on in shock and despair. Instead, much to Natasha’s surprise (Shannon noted) the trial proceeded without her father’s presence. Instead, the Council woman Mindera did nothing but spout bloated legal jargon that no one in attendance seemed to pay any attention too. Even Shannon, with her acute linguistic capability, couldn’t manage to follow the archaic legislative words describing the entire case in minute detail.

 

 

Shannon actually became bored with it; an apathetic emotion that snuck up on her life a thief from an alley. Upon her discovery of the rogue she mentally shook herself as she stood listening to Mindera’s monotone voice. She decided to prepare an eloquent speech for this assembly, one that would allow her to convey her complete disappointment with the government and its leaders but didn’t directly perjure herself before the court. As she weaved the narrative in her mind, she had smiled at its brilliance. Finally, at the close of the trial, Fresenius had offered her one last opportunity to make an official statement before all in session. As they all watched she steeled herself for the moment of truth…

 

 

…but one last look at Natasha Marks reproachful glare shut down her tongue. Within her attorneys’ gaze was the warning she had made to Shannon in the waiting room, [b][i]‘Miss Avryndyr, if you can promise to refrain from speaking out of turn, I promise you that you will have a final conversation with your parents’[/i][/b].

 

 

“No…your…your Honor,” Shannon had replied to Fresenius. The word of his title burning in the back of her throat as a few tears escaped her eyes. This was the world’s justice, and beyond the torment of losing her parents the small girl also lost something even as precious, she had lost her faith in her fellow man.     Shannon sighed as a Quintescent Cleric came from an adjoining hallway and strode aside them on a parallel route to somewhere in the massive building. The smelled of odd powders and fumes from wherever his laboratory resided broke her out of her memories of just a hand ago. When the cleric turned down a side passage Shannon was thankful to be able to breathe fresh air again.

 

 

At some point Shannon lost sight of any of the large windows which gazed upon the splendor of the park outside. She wondered if they had completed their journey of the upper thirty floors and were now traversing the dungeon levels below. Sure enough they turned a corner and she recognized the passageways. She shivered at the memory of being lead down into this very same dungeon when she had been jailed during that first night after her parents’ arrest.     “Almost there,” said the Judge from inside his massive plate-mail helm.    


Offline Wildfire

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2011, 07:13:47 AM »
Shannon replayed the experiences and events of the last few days from the beginning in the infirmary up until now as she turned to march down the cold prison hall. She could see her mother healing her father. She thought of the moments her father fought the guards. She remembered conversing with the Judge, that she was now following, while in her cell. She recalled the beastly orphanage headmaster pitching her into a wall. She dreaded the moment she would say good bye.

Shannon felt numb from it all. It was as though her recollections were born of some surreal world and lived by someone else. The hope she had that was true came and went as quickly as bird flying to safety from a passer-by.

She continued to hold the rolled piece of parchment on which she drew a favorite memory for her parents to see. “Judge Criss, how much time will we have?” she asked, a hint of nervousness in her voice.
Wildfire

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Offline Dray

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2011, 09:55:49 AM »
“Only a few moments child,” the Judge stated gently.

Natasha took her hand at that moment and gave it a squeeze. “Be strong for them Miss Auvryndyr,” she said. The three entered the last check-in point before the prison hallways.

(OOC: just giving you the one last opportunity before you see the two of them).

Offline Wildfire

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2011, 05:52:20 AM »
The moment Shannon dreaded was upon her. She knew it was going to arrive but her hope had also suggested that if it never did arrive then there was time for the situation to be set right. She quietly laughed at herself thinking that maybe if she put her hands over her eyes then the circumstances she was in wouldn’t see her. It was preposterous of course but part of her still clung to her seemingly deceased childhood.

All thoughts of what she would say escaped her. She imagined how the last meeting might be and none of those scenarios prepared her for how she felt right now. It was as though her mind was overfull and she just needed time to digest the emotions. How long would that take? For as long as she was alive she supposed.

Her fathers words echoed back to her once again, “Be brave” she whispered to herself rolling her drawing between her fingers nervously.

How ironic it seemed to her that she should be in a prison about to wish her parents well until she saw them again. The prison was made of callous stone and hard iron bars. It was not unlike the court council or the barriers she sought to overcome in her mind. The stone and iron would show more mercy to her it seemed.

Not wanting to think of the oncoming moment Shannon stated quietly, “Judge Criss, this is where we first met. Do you remember that? We shared a cell together…only you were there to talk to me. You, like my father and mother, weren’t a criminal.” Just after she asked her question Shannon realized that her question and the judges answer would probably only serve to fuel her anger. She needed that right now…at least she thought she did. She also hoped that he wouldn’t misunderstand her statement of ‘weren’t’ thinking she felt him to be one now. In truth, she wasn’t sure of the extent of his role in any of this.

OOC: I added the last two paragraphs as an edit to this posting.
Wildfire

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Offline Wildfire

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2011, 11:09:43 AM »
OOC: Is Natasha, Shannon's lawyer for her trial, Leslie's mother?
Wildfire

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Offline Johan

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2011, 11:21:14 AM »
I had wondered this too, but Leslie's mother's name is Pamela. Could be a Russian aunt though.
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Offline Dray

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2011, 12:28:56 PM »
Natasha is Leslie's father's unmarried sister (need a graph?). Oh, and she is Albanian, not Russion.

Wildfire, I didn't realize the ball was in my court on this thread, I will post as soon as I can. Since the next post is a "doozy" it may be a day or two until I can get to it.

Offline Griznuq

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2011, 10:13:59 PM »
Aren't they all.
=]V[=

Offline Dray

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2011, 08:09:44 AM »
(OOG: Yes, yes they are.)

They had been walking the main prison hallways for a few turns (OOG: 1 turn (of the clock) = 1 minute). The prison cells to the left and right were simple cages with open bars. Shannon had been careful not to look at anyone in the cells, instead focusing on the Judges’ feet ahead of her.

They had just reached a door with the words ‘SOLITARY CONFINEMENT’ on a sign above it when Shannon had finished speaking to him:

”…you weren’t like my father and mother, weren’t a criminal.”

The imposing full-suit of plate mail that was Judge Nathaniel Criss stopped abruptly at the door. Shannon, oblivious to the change in attitude in the Judge, walked quietly around the tall man and discovered a pair of eyes that had appeared beyond the small barred window of prison steel door.

Nathaniel’s ornately decorated helm didn’t move, nor did any part of steel underneath it. He just stood there ignoring the questioning eyes two feet in front of him.

“Sir?” asked the man beyond the small window, awaiting the order to open the prison door.

Still the Judge remained frozen.

The epiphany of the Judges’ tension hit Shannon like a mongrel boulder.

’Oh my gosh I said something and he is going to refuse my last visit!’ thought Shannon in a sudden panic.

Her heart pounded in her chest as she held her breath.

For a full turn he remained still. It was as if the man had disintegrated inside his armor and left it behind.

But then slowly, the giant of a man flexed his left mailed gauntlet. This only served to scare Shannon more, for the movement was even scarier than his previously frozen status. He then tapped the door with his metal-plated knuckles and stood aside. The door swung open.

Shannon almost forgot to breathe as she slipped past him and entered the corridor beyond.

The light was even dimmer beyond. The prison cells to the left and right had stone walls instead of open bars and each cell had a solid steel door with a small hatch at the bottom for sliding food through. It was completely quiet.

The prison guard beyond was dressed in chain-mail and was armed with a heavy crossbow. Shannon saw that it was loaded with a bolt that had a thin glass vial of some liquid attached to its head. What the poison within did to its victim she could only guess.

After the Judge and Natasha came in behind her, Natasha said to the guard, “here to see the Auvryndyr family.”

Offline Wildfire

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #9 on: December 01, 2011, 08:53:16 PM »
Shannon had thought nothing could be as gloomy and hopeless as the prison cell she had occupied before her trial. She understood now that she was profoundly mistaken. This was the place they kept her parents, her innocent parents, that had done nothing wrong. Clearly this was a place to hold the most reviled and dangerous of criminals. The girl of ten years closed her eyes, bowed her head, and took a deep breath. It seemed to her there were too many of these moments that she did this in the last few days. The moment was upon her and her heart began to pace. Her throat became choked and began to hurt in the back. She tightened her tear rimmed eyes and desperately searched for the resolve to take the next step.

“Be brave and don’t give them the satisfaction of misery. Instead let them wonder at the strength of your hope.” she thought to herself. She imagined standing on a tall tower with the wind blowing a long red cape behind her. In her hand was a bright and gleaming torch that she held out. It was burning hot…hotter than the flames that kept the Kar’Thul at bay. Around the tower was a throng of people looking up in wonder, dazzled at the sight of the flame and its wielder. They were cheering. Among the people in the crowd only two faces stood out.

“here to see the Auvryndyr family.”

Shannon’s eyes snapped open and her tears were gone as was the lump in her throat.  In her hand was the picture she had clung to all these days. She lifted her blonde head to look forward and take her next step. She was ready.
Wildfire

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Offline Dray

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2011, 06:28:53 PM »
The guard simply nodded to the Judge and turned, leading them to the second door on the left. He procured a key, unlocked the door and left it ajar as he stepped back.

“That will be all soldier,” stated the Judge, his voice echoing coldly within his massive steel helm.

For just a moment, the soldier looked at the Judge a bit startled by the dismissal. He recovered quickly however and proceeded to move out of solitary confinement. As the door to the main corridor closed behind them with a gloomy thud, Shannon noted that Natasha and Nathaniel weren’t moving. They weren’t intending on accompanying her into her parents’ prison cell.

A cold shiver went down her spine, as she also realized something even more dire, her parents weren’t coming out of the recently opened door.

Offline Wildfire

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2011, 07:53:58 PM »
OOC: Edited for consistency
Shannon took her steps towards the inevitable departure, trying desperately not to clutch her drawing. She had to keep her composure for losing it may only send her parents into a state of despair when they needed hope the most.

 “Be brave” she whispered as her heart nearly burst out of her chest.
Wildfire

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Offline Dray

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2011, 07:39:06 AM »
(OOG: I am unsure how Shannon would be running towards the door? The first paragraph of my last post intimates that Shannon, the Judge, and Natasha are standing at Shannon’s parents’ cell door. Although this is just semantics, for clarity purposes you may want to edit?)

Beyond the door was a ten by ten stone block cell with no windows. At the center of the ceiling a single hooded lantern mounted on a chain provided a pitiful amount of light.

Her father hung by chains on the wall to Shannon’s left, her mother to the right. The shackles about their wrists held the chains taunt, keeping their bodies upright against the wall. Both were blindfolded and dressed in mere rags, and in addition her mother was gagged. While her father didn’t seem worse for wear, her mother looked devastatingly beaten. Rips along the peasant shirt and breeches indicated she had been whipped or slashed at least two dozen times and blood soaked the gag in her mouth.

Neither of her parents moved, perhaps unconscious or unaware of their daughter’s entry.

edited on 12.09.2011...took the gag out of Shannon's father's mouth (otherwise it would be hard to speak me thinks)

OOC: I had actually thought of that but decided not to sweat the details on it.

Offline Wildfire

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2011, 02:11:48 PM »
Shannon wasn’t sure if she was prepared for this or not. No amount of imagination could have compared to the sight before her. She continued to think they had done nothing wrong and that this was a severe punishment, especially for her mother, for doing nothing more than saving a life. Shannon remembered what the judge in the cell said to her “…your father was healed by the white magic, but in the end, three priest and a soldier were seriously injured because of it.” It dawned on Shannon that this was a manipulative lie meant to promote fear and compliance. It was that fear that justified the beating of her Mom. She realized that she had time enough to dwell on this and more. Now was the time for her parents.

In a quiet voice she said, “Mom…Dad? I’m here to see you.” It was everything she could do to hold in the inevitable flood of tears.
Wildfire

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Offline Dray

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07.25.2127 - A Child's Goodbye
« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2011, 10:51:13 PM »
“Shannon!” her father said in a firm but hushed tone. “Oh my little one, quick go to your mother and hold her,” he said. As she looked over, Shannon saw her mother’s body start to shiver. For a split second she thought her mother was cold, but then realized this was not the case. Her mother was crying…but because her crying lacked any kind of sound, it looked like she had been convulsing. The only sound Shannon could only hear was from her mother struggling to breathe through the gag.

“Shannon, don’t be afraid. But know that your mother can’t talk. Her throat…well, its injured honey,” her father added.

Shannon could see no discernible marks along her mother’s bare neck. ’What did Daddy mean? Her mother’s throat was injured, she looked fine, there wasn’t a mark….’

And then it hit her like a mongrel boulder. They had injured the inside of her mother’s throat; to keep her from speaking, to keep her from being able to use magic.