After all that has happened of late, it's become apparent to the priests and Flame Seers in Nasherat that the kinship needs a festival to remind them of their past, and loosen up their spirits with merriment. As well, the harvest season is just around the corner. This year is the first year of a hopefully annual tradition called Burning Man. A massive wooden efficagy of Rithor has been built in the City Plaza in Nasherat, along with a large stage. The Oral Traditions of the kinship will be acted out in plays put on by each family, (OOC: NPCS will do this, but they are from each family.) and bards, dancing groups, and more will step upon that stage to enchant the peoples with their artistry. At the end of the night, the efficagy of Rithor will be set ablaze in holy fire and hot coals will be placed out for hunters, expectant mothers, young couples, and oath-takers to test themselves in Rithor's eyes and receive their blessings. At the conclussion of the ceremony, the ashes of Rithor will be spread across the doorways of the city for luck.
Malice, a lithe and deadly Krilkar arrives, following Sylindra.
Imirie, the Gold anointed Starling arrives, delivering a message to Qahir before departing.
Nobu, Favored Lizard, Taro, Noble Desert Owl, Daffi-Dil, the loveable hedgehog arrive, following Qahir.
The city center has seen the construction of a huge efficagy of Rithor built out of a combination of timber and straw. Below their mighty glory stands a stage a meter and a half off the ground. In front of this is a packed earth dance floor and beyond that are timber stands set into gathered and packed down sand to form a large semi-circle. On stage is one of the Flame Seers, dressed in only a bright red loin cloth and a huge wooden mask painted with a monster's face on it. He addresses the gathered elves of the Thalerith.
"Greetings my sandy elven family! Tonight we celebrate under the stars in honor of Rithor and all their blessings given unto our entire race! We shall start with legends of the sands of old, the vicious tigers our cavalry once rode. We'll move into the history of our migrations, the divides in our peoples, the lessons learned, the tribulations over come." he moves about the stage, commanding a greater presence than one would normally in a crowd this size, "And at last, we shall explore the sounds of our new desert home as bards of various instruments and rhythms echo their souls fearlessly into the sky!"
He backs off stage and a large folding diagram with the background of black sand dunes is held up, the sky of the silk backdrop just partially transparent, enough for the red light of a torch to shine through. Several young adult elves enter onto the stage wearing simple clothing from an ancient time.
Zaltar is here watching the stage intently but quietly, giving a polite but silent greeting to the others here. He seems not to wish to interrupt what is happening
Dunlain is entering into the city center as the play begins and swiftly finds three things. A vendor selling meat on a stick, crispy fried bread sticks dusted with spice and sugar, and ice cold dune beer. He pops open the bottle of near frozen alcohol and takes a swig, then he settles into to watch.
Qahir arrives right on time to hear the Flame Seer's speech. He's still dressed in the crimson tabbard of the Blood Templars, his now usual leather trousers, and no shoes. His desert owl rests on his shoulder while he keeps a smaller creature along his right arm. He moves through the crowd as deftly as someone his size can. Read: he doesn't. First he finds his cousin, and makes his presence known to him with a nudge at the other elf's shoulder. "Having a good time?" he asks while scannin the crowd of gathered elves.
"It just started," Zaltar replies quietly to Qahir, nodding over to Dunlain in greeting as his eyes return to focus on the stage again
The Warlord is standing somewhere conspicuously front and centre, where people can see her attending the ceremony.
The play centers on the expansion of the kinship into the southern deserts and plains of the old world, after the Scorched Ear War. The backdrops change here and there as the actors play the vital roles of those elves involved. Actors portray Aeran, Duindar, and Thalerith warriors fighting each other, driven to conflict over the backdrop imprinted deep scar in the land. Slowly they show how the fighting is drawing to a stalemate, before magical white flames rain down from the sky for a brief moment and then suddenly stop.
The narration of the play describes the events as they unfold, the Wars of Growth, the Second Migration, the Rain of Fire. After the rain of fire commences a short intermission, backdrops getting changed and the actor who portrayed Warlord Xarvo stands at the front of the stage giving a long eulogy for the ancient peoples of their kin, his deep baritone voice carrying well into the city with a stirring tale of bravery, strength, and eventually loss.
"I see," Qahir responds to the shorter Thalerith. He was opening his mouth for something else, but grows quiet as the dancing continues. The second migration is what gaints his attention completely, and he remains enraptured until the brief intermission comes."I was afraid I might has missed things, honestly."
"Seems you where right in time," Zaltar replies quietly, keeping his focus on the stage and the performance.
After the intermission, Xarvo announces that the bardic performances will begin. He then backs out and a group arrive, getting massive cheers from the crowd. The Dunes begin to play their most well known ballad, Riders on the Sand. They follow this up with Abassah Woman. Their set runs another four of their songs before they end off with their most anticipated song, Ignite my Pyre. When they're done, the crowd is going nuts and hollaring for more.
Dunlain finishes off the breadsticks and washes them down with his thick sky blue beer. He begins on the skewers of meat, nodding over at Qahir and Zaltar. However once The Dunes arrive on stage he's standing and cheering and dancing with everyone else.
Zaltar watches the dancing, drumming his fingers against his leg, hmming softly along with the music.
The next bardic group on stage is Travel and they begin with a slower melody, Faithful He. It's a sweet song about the love between a bard as his beloved. Their twelve song set is ended with another highly anticipated favorite, Haven't Stopped Considering.
The final bard to perform is playing a harp and he's known as Bille'ole. Down on the dance floor there is a huge number of elves dancing happily in response to the music. Harp Man, Only The Bold Die Young, You Could Be Right, and several more.
His last song is the most fun though and everyone sings along to it:
"Loran dreams the elves alive,Ithiriel Serannar, First Kingdom is Born."
"It passes down Laenor, Ogres fight a bloody war, elves win but many lives are lost."
"First Migration, Kingdom falls, Kinships, Laenor lost, Ithiriel title cast off."
"Faenor, Duindar, Lorandi, Thalerith, Aeran stay behind."
"We didn't light the pyre! It was always burning, since the wheel's been turning. We didn't start that fire! No we didn't light it, but we tried to fight it!"
And so on it goes until he's finally done. Afterwhich the current Warlord is brought out on stage, to give a speech.
Dunlain is singing along to several of these songs, and he's dancing in the middle of as many elves as one could count and then some. It's a sea of dancing bodies as the night grows deeper around them. As the song comes to a close and the Warlord comes out on stage, she's greeting a cheering mass of a few hundred elves.
The Warlord of the Thalerith makes her to the front of the stage, a nearby mage moving hands in arcane patterns to call upon prestidigitation in order to enhance her voice. Sylindra is not one for long speeches, so fortunately this will be short. "My fellow Thalerith!" She begins, her voice ringing out across the assembled crowd. Her tone is genial and friendly, but it sounds awkward and doesn't really suit her well, but she tries. "I wish to give our deepest thanks to the Thalerith's pious and devoted Flame Seers for all the time and effort they've put into this ceremony, and all the ways they help guide our spirits every day. It truly warms my heart to see so many our GREAT kinship out here having a good time, showing their faith, and learing our history. My sincere thanks as well to all the actors and bards who performed here tonight. Excellently done guys, it was like watching our history truly come alive before us. We exulted before our victories, wept before our losses, and were deeply moved by the sacrifices of our forebears. And the music! You guys know how to get a crowd going! Everyone danced and cheered like mad, simpy fantastic. A round of applause for our Flame Seers and all our performers!"
The crowd cheers, whistles, and the applause echoes around the city. Dunlain whoops along with them, taking a large swig of some drink that wasn't his original. As the warlord is giving her speech, people are being shuffled off the dance floor and a large line of hot coals is being formed.
After the applause dies down, the Warlord being speaking again. This time she takes on the the firm, commanding tones of a military leader, her words attaining all the hard confidence of a proper Warlord. "As most of you know by know the Thalerith have established a settlement at Abbasah Harbour west of Nasherat, administered by House Devrien, and another to the east at Moya Falls, administered by House Filinnar. These are but the first in what will be a crown of shining jewels that together we shall build all across the Scorching Wasteland. As we speak the Houses are organizing multiple expeditions to find out what else is out there, to conquer the desert and make it ours!" The Warlord gestures forcefully as she speaks, he arms and hands punctuating every word and sentence for extra impact. "And if there is a Watcher out there waiting for us, we will meet him head on, we will fight, we will triumph! All these surrounding lands are ours by divine ordinance!" Both fists go up in the air as she bellows, "WE. WILL. NOT. BE. MOVED!"
Zaltar listens to Warlord curiously, tilting his head slightly taking in her words
The whooping and cheering raises up a notch and it's difficult to single out any particular sounds. Keen ears here high pitched high volume whistles in the crowd, the kind where someone puts fingers in their mouth. Slowly the excitement dies off, though some are still cheering or clapping, and one of the priests of Rithor makes their announcement, "Those of you who are hunters, expecting mothers, or oath-takers may now approach the coals and test your resolve."
Back to list