Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Gallifrag Nevit

So I made a new character for a rpg we're going to play through discord or roll20 or...something. And I was supposed to write a character background for once...so typical me, I went a little overboard. If you're in the game in question...you're probably not supposed to see this, though :P

Bright-eyed and Bushy-tailed was a phrase made for (or by, as he was prone to saying) Gallifrag Nevit, or Newt as he was known. As a youth he displayed a strength of arm that was only surpassed by his talent for tale-telling and penchant for scandal. Falling in and out of love seemed to be his most favoured skill, and when the Mayor's daughter took a liking to our honey-tongued hero, he knew it was time to leave. There may also have been a fire.

Newt took to life on the road with glorious flair, quickly finding and befriending like minded individuals and eventually joining The Salamander's Tongue, a troupe known for their bawdy tunes, tumblers, and fire-eaters of great skill. Newt became something of a fixture, his tale-telling centre stage as the patrons ate, offset and jibed by the bawdy crew.

And then there was Ellania. The bouncer and sometime poet of their group. A high elf of low and cutting wit, she entranced Gallifrag from the first insult. They bandied words, duels of wit and, Newt dreamed, love. Moon elf, she called herself, and moon eyes, she called him. For the long years that passed so swiftly, the days and nights of ribaldry and passions cloaked by duelling tongues. The act that they were, together, on stage and off, each enjoying the teasing delights of courtship.

And then in one night, it was all over.

The muddy village they came to could scarce afford to put them up. The tired and weary troupe, buoyed by spirits alone, set about lifting the poor villagers as they could. Food they shared, drink they overpaid for, and laughter was gold they spilt into the souls of the downtrodden. It was more than a lifetime of passion that was spun that day, and something more lit within Newt as he followed Ellania up the half-rotten stairs. The glances they exchanged that night said more than a hundred years could have, and though dirty and insect-ridden his bough was, Newt's heart was lighter than the heavens.

He awoke to harsh sounds in the night. The clash of metal and the crackle of something else. And then a voice crying out in the dark. Dagger in hand, Newt flung open his door to the scene of a nightmare. The inn on fire, Ellania's room locked and blazing from within.

With ferocious kicks he burst into her room, the wounded Ellania left dazed and bleeding on the floor, while the fire raged all around.

And for the first time, he prayed. The ancient halfling words spilled from his soul and into the night, a tale of fire and wounds so deep they would not be quenched. As the words rang out, he slashed at his palm, the blood hissing into the flames that licked at his tumbler's legs. He fell to his knees, his voice booming to the sky, strident and proud and broken.

And a ringing call was his answer. The flames gathered into his palm and thrust into his soul, scorching away what he was and filling him with a power he had never known. His hands became the instruments of the divine, and as he laid them upon his dying love's body, he felt his life join with hers, the fires sweeping away the poison in her blood, and making her whole.

In that moment their souls co-existed, and the overpowering joy he felt as they regarded each other was tinged by a bright sorrow. For he knew then that there was a price, that there is always a price. And he felt the weight around his soul, not only of the duty that now befell him, but of the difference between them. The enemy Ellania had faced was far more powerful than he knew, than he could understand, and he would be cut down in a heartbeat if he stayed by her side.

The compulsion settled within him, and as he carried her from the charred but otherwise miraculously unharmed inn to the troupe's caravan, he knew he had to leave. The whispered blessing he laid upon her cheek had the love of all the years they had seen together behind it, and as he stepped away he left the one thing he treasured most - his prized flute - and took the one thing he knew meant nothing to her, a small silver ring she had won at a fair.

With clasped hands and hugs, Newt walked away to pursue his newfound destiny. A voyage of long years, but with love always in his heart.