Galduhr's hatred towards the oppressor is only encouraged.
|Pale light filtered through the windows and skylights of the Portus, casting the great hall in hues of pinks and blues as it was filtered through grandiose stained-glass portraits. They told tales of battles long past. Of winged soldiers sent from a heaven to the North to save those lesser creatures down below. They told tales of the salvation of the more primitive races that thought to lead life without war. The glass became more sedate in nature as time moved forward, the birth of Baeryn, the son of a reunification effort between Bellum and Deformaere. The death of Phaedra and the crowning of the current King Vexilla was the current crowning piece of the Hall, laid in stark contrast with purpled stone as it allowed light to flow over the throne.
The heir of the Baelish people followed her father into the Hall, her diminutive stature only magnified by the weight of the gown into which she had been doused. No braids decorated her shorn, brown hair, but her pale blue eyes made up for such a lack, piercing the soul of any unfortunate soul that found themselves the subject of scrutiny. She carried herself as a Portus Guard might, muscles taught in her control over every movement. Eyes flicked from courtier to lord to lady to guard, taking in her surroundings as one might when thrown into a coliseum of lions. She was the lion though, and she didn’t even know it.
Kaetlyn flourished in the light of her domain, white blonde hair pinned back in intricate braids, beads and crystals glinting as if to reflect back their owner’s very soul. Her sheath dress defied gravity as it flowed around her in a veil of cerulean. As soon as she had spied the Baelish heir, she had decided on a mark, effortlessly guiding her older female companion with her across the Hall to where the newly introduced stood. The little woman would be a great friend, despite her sullen looks. Surely, the Baelish would come around with Swyft’s help, despite this little woman’s lineage.
Galduhr Baelish glowered at the creature that accosted his daughter. Inside, he festered with rage that his heir must even be in the presence of these beasts, that she must make such overtures in order to be welcome in their Halls. Vexilla pestered him in ways Haaelor never could. At least with the Waynewood, they could offer some debate or allow their counterpart a period of quiet to gather their thoughts. Vexilla seemed to never know when he wasn’t wanted, or perhaps it was merely that he could not conceive of such a notion to begin. The great winged king was motioning to the glass art that let in no light due to its corner placement, the beginnings of the Bellum kingdom, the destruction of the Baelish, or, as Vexilla explained it, the rebirth.
Munira perched herself atop one of the many precipices that pierced into this new land from the Aljunun Mountains. Few had ever fully crossed the range, and she could see why. It was too bright, white light falling on greenery in every which direction. The same suns were overhead though, a comfort in her planning for future battle. Where she perched, it didn’t seem much planning would be necessary. Though plentiful in bodies, none seemed to know war. If nothing else, this new beginning for the Mother Queen Charania would prove a morale boost for her troops who she knew would tire soon after such a trek through the Almawt basin was anything to go by.
A small, mining town, the little creatures that scurried down below were pitiful in their states. Hovels were built into the ground, and though they were a group civilized enough to at least clothe their young, they could not protect those same younglings. Useless beings for warfare, they might utilize them at a later date for the mining which they seemed to have such propensity for. This battle had been over from the start, uninteresting to watch and more so to waste such strategy on. Munira had hoped for something more in her mother’s own hope for a kingdom to flourish under Munira’s hand.
Planning had taken many moons, sketching maps and charting courses into the unknown lands. Charania offered all that was to Munira, and Munira would take that offering whole-heartedly. Her brethren, the Alatus, had come from the basin and into the valley of the mining folk with gusto so befitting the warfaring clan. These small creatures could do nothing to defend themselves and the Alatus cast the souls of those that might flee from the land from their bodies. A multitude of wings glinted in the white light as their victory was laid at their plated feet.
Pulling a stray feather from a wing, Munira looked down from her perch with what she could only perceive as being compassion for those lesser beings that thought to have survived without her people’s guidance. These people had weapons at their disposal yet seemed to have no knowledge of their use. She would rectify these missteps. This clan would fall under her protection and tutelage, a fine beginning to the cultivating of these new lands for her Queen Mother Charania. As the dark haired Alatus stood to her full height, light, layered armor creating a symphony as it shifted with her, she took in the dug into land. Something was within the Aljunun mountains that these creatures sought, and she would take it for the motherland.
One of the mines had collapsed on top of its workers, flinging dust into the air to exacerbate the situation. The collapse was a purposeful endeavour, and the mastermind behind the beginning of the onslaught was nowhere to be seen, hidden behind the red mountain that had protected its inhabitants for so long. Above the little creatures heads, the sky was blue, barely a wisp of a cloud in sight as the sun rose to its midday height. What should have been the call for supper now rang in terror as the shrieks of children were heard over the tinking of hammers in the mines.
Like ash spewed from a fire, the winged ones had swarmed from over top the mountain and into their valley. Death flashed its mighty sword and the valley was filled with sacrifices to the one that ends all. Those of the mines had never seen a creature so large with such the wings that seemed to have only belonged to the song birds of the fields. Wings large and powerful enough to be a weapon on their own were maneuvered by beings who were armed with an assortment of blades, the high noon suns glinting to blind the miners as they served to prove their own uselessness in the face of such remorselessness.
The dust in the air rained down in clumps as it was mixed with the spewed gore the Winged Ones threw to the sky as they slaughtered the defenceless. Heavy wings snapped necks with barely a thought while plated feet kicked in what should have been sturdy doors. They sought war where war was not fought. A child was slung into stone while the Winged female that had done so merely kicked the remains out of the way in her path to her other brethren. They were too unlike the peaceful song birds to have a place in this valley of green and fruitfulness.
The Baelish withdrew into their caverns and mines for the safety they had always drawn from them. They would lose this fight. This fight between those that sought familial clanship and those that sought to obtain power through the might of hand. So, further into the mountain what remained of the Baelish crept, bringing down the main entrance into the valley. The Winged Ones would not fit in the mines; they were too tall, too bulky, while the Baelish were small, but sturdy in stature. A time for redemption would come, but that time was too far to put foresight into.
Galduhr had his own plans laid out but kept them close to his chest. Vexilla was a pompous fool, but he was a fool with connections. Whether or not he recognized his own affiliations, that was another matter entirely. For now, he was stuck listening to the great winged fool relate the tale of the beginnings of the Bellum as though his audience wasn’t aware of what idiocy he spewed. Galduhr may be wingless, bound to the ground from whence he came, but was anything but helpless. Vexilla could have his great wings, feathered monstrosities that they were, but he was a fool who thought his station guaranteed. His forced upon country of clans just barely held together under threat of annilhilation, and Vexilla was certainly fool enough to think the destruction of the colonized peoples would endear them to him.
“Do you think he thinks he’s subtle in any way?” queried the black haired Alatus guard to Haaelor Waynewood, Lord of the noble clan of fair folk. Both jested to the other as though they had known each other for years, and they had, the lifetime of Haaelor counting for very few of Slynt’s years.
“Galduhr will always view himself as the victim, regardless of what power is bestowed upon him. He thinks himself very mighty from his chambers down below and therefore the most secretive of us all.” A war on the home front was brewing, and Haaelor planned already to keep his head far away from its source.
Galduhr and Vexilla’s daughters, both heirs to their seats of power made quick work of pilfering the feasting tables, Aryl more forthright under the ever watchful guidance of Kaetlyn. Swyft followed the two younger females, if only to keep them from making a fool of themselves in front of someone truly important, then so be it. Kaetlyn seemed the only one of the three comfortable in her garments. Aryl wishing for the freedom of trousers and Swyft for the freedom of a heavier fabricked skirt. None belonged, but all a place of being in a kingdom that was never meant to be but existed regardless.
The introduction had never been anything less than a show of force. Aryl was now faced with the Alatus as they were and nothing Galduhr could do would keep his heir from them. Vexilla had long thought his alliance with the Waynewood and the Baelish set in stone, and Galduhr may have been far past the half way point in his life, but he would find himself in the seat that the Alatus toted before he was done. Vexilla would forfeit his power with the same show of force that Baelish had been witness to so many many years ago.