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Vehk Hlaalu
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re: A Dawn For Every Dusk

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This story is co-authored by the creators of Katriel Gilvani, and Vehk Hlaalu.

This story takes places immediately after the events of the Fort Farragut thread.

 

 

Off the coast of Vivec city, a small group gathered around a funeral pyre. It was time. Vehk had given his life to kill the infamous General Aicanlo in defense of Fort Farragut. Now, in the place of his youth, the Dunmer was put to rest. He was to be given an honourable pyre, as his soul had long since departed the vessel. The mer's body was set ablaze in the starlight. None of the moons were in the sky tonight. Only the stars held vigil to illuminate the calm seas and pierce the veil of night. Only a few people had attended the funeral, dyed orange in the light of the flame. Just as Vehk would've wanted it. Vehk's family was there, in all black for more than one reason. Even Ranya Adhil was there, for herself, and on behalf of her queen. Gogron had to make a point to stand between Ranya and Ravani. Even in their grief, their eyes were like daggers towards eachother.

A few members of House Hlaalu joined were there. Alandauron and Idas stood by Falauren and Drevaren. Katriel stood by herself. Xivilli followed Katriel's suit, although Varon stayed somewhat close by. Dens Rima stood alone as well, contemplative, and seemingly in prayer.

Azrik, and a couple members of the Forester's Guild showed up, keeping their distance with wary eyes from Vehk’s Dark Brotherhood family. Not much was said in the way of words that night. The solemn silence spoke volumes, as the fire burned bright.

 

 

 

The next night, the moons returned to the sky, and the Dunmer Katriel sat on a rooftop in Ebonheart. Her legs dangled off of the edge of the building. Katriel’s eyes seemed to be forever slightly puffy since her friend had died, though always stubborn, she had never once let one fall, yet this night was an acception as she looked at the city below her. Silently, she prayed to whoever might be listening, even though she knew that what she asked was impossible, none of the deities that she knew so little about could…or would…bring back her friend, so with a sigh and a scarred hand brushing through her bangs, trying but failing to get them out of her eyes, she suffered alone. A mer walked on the roof behind her. He wore naught but a simple black robe, with his hood drawn. A familiar voice called out to Katriel in a calm, content voice. "Is this seat taken?"

Katriel jumped slightly, having been consumed by her thoughts and not paying any attention to what was around her, she looked behind her quickly, her stronger left hand resting on the hilt of Rose, which had taken residence where her fire laced dagger once been. In the moonlight, and with her hood down, it was obvious that she had been neglecting herself, her face and frame was skinner than before and her hair, though in a bun, wasn't neat as she almost always had it. She narrowed her eyes slightly, she knew that voice...but at the moment she wasn't sure of who it was. After what felt like an hour, she finally relaxed slightly and shook her head gently, saying that the stranger could sit as she went back to looking over the city in the dead of night.

 After waiting patiently, the mer sat down beside Katriel. He didn't like how she had been neglecting herself. He let his feet dangle off the edge as he pulled back his hood. He was Vehk Hlaalu. He looked like himself, but slightly different. Notably his hair was much shorter. Gone was his long ponytail held back by braids on either side of his head. Now his hair was only stubble on his head. Not to be deprived of something to have tied behind his head, he now wore a black silk sash as a blindfold. His body was fresh and new. Stubble lined face, and not a scar or blemish was visible on his skin. With the exception of one rather large scar on his chest and back. The scar of where the Aicanlo's great-sword had impaled his former body.

Vehk took a deep breath after he sat, and looked out across the city before speaking to his old friend. "I didn't think I would see any of you again. It's good to return to Nirn." He turned to face Kat. He smiled, and arched an eyebrow.

Katriel furrowed her brows before looking over to her new companion, She jumped in surprise and disbelief to who had just turned up, eyes wide as she almost fell from the roof. "W-What....?! B...but...I...I saw your body burn...not even two days ago...." She shook her head and rubbed her eyes, had her mind finally snapped? She was so lost...There was no way Vehk was right here in front of her...but it was his voice...it even looked like him...kinda...her face paled slightly at the thought that he might be a corpse brought back as a cruel joke or something...but...she'd never known a reanimated corpse to be able to talk....what in oblivion was going on?! She moved her hands, eyes wide and almost comical, had her friend really come back...? "B..but...you're dead Vehk...there...there's no way you could be here...no logical way..."

Vehk chuckled darkly and imitated a zombie, groaning and waving his arms out stiffly before Katriel. "IIIII'mmm a cruuuelll joke byy Ffffaiiirrryy."

Vehk stuck his tongue out at her and immediately furled his brow. "Damn, you couldn't see me roll my eyes." Vehk paused and took a deep breath of the cool air. "You haven't been taking care of yourself Kat."

She blinked as he mentioned her lack of self-care, a suddenly blank look came to her face, why did it matter to him if she was or wasn't? He supposedly died and had just come back from the pyre! Weren’t there more important things for him to be concerned about?! She scowled at Vehk then, becoming more comfortable.. despite possibly being tricked by some necromancer scum.

 "Fairy wouldn't...you and I both know that...and what does it matter if I do or not? Doesn't matter it seems..." She pulled her knees to her chest, a dark look coming to her face.

Vehk was careful not to let concern poison his face. Instead, he let compassion colour it.

"Because Kat, we need you. All of us."

From seemingly nowhere at all, Vehk produced two empty tea cups, and a tea pot. In truth, it wasn’t real. It was another of Vehk’s illusions. He hoped that it would trigger Kat’s appetite. Carefully, he filled the two cups, and scooted one over towards Katriel. He'd drop the subject. Katriel’s eyebrows raised at the seemingly impossible thing Vehk had just done...that would have been useful in some situations. She hesitantly took the cup, sipping it to see if anything was wrong with it, when she detected nothing she actually let herself swallow the tea, it being the first thing down her throat in a few days.

Vehk began to talk. "I was wondering, we know each other fairly well, but we don't really know about each other's past. We're the type, that even a full coin purse to the right people wouldn't garner us information. Would you like to trade story for story? If you'd like, ask me a question, and I'll share first." His smile was sincere, as he sipped his tea.

"....alright....how in Oblivion are you here after dying?" She knew it wasn't a creative question, or even that far in the past...she still couldn't shake the feeling that something was up though....and she was always curious!

Vehk's face was calm, but serious. "Oblivion. That's precisely it. When I died, I saw it. The Void. Nothingness. Then, it all seemed to shatter, like a mirror. Before me I saw Moonshadow. Azura's realm of Oblivion."

He took another sip of his tea before resting it beside him, on the rooftop. "I have prayed to Azura for decades now. She gives me guidance every now and then. The night that Xivilli lost control, and attacked you at the lodge, if she hadn't shown me a vision, I wouldn't have been able to help. She showed me what would happen at Farragut.” He paused, his hands clenched at the thought of what had happened less than a week ago. Eventually, he continued with a pained tone in his voice. “The portals closing, the last stand, and the duel. Even my death. I knew I would end up like that, just not how I'd get there. I stayed, to do what Azura wished me to do. For my loyalty” He chuckled, “and usefulness, I was given a chance to continue serving her. Hence... this." He gestured vaguely to his new body.

Katriel blinked, having never been taught about any of the gods, living or otherwise, by her parents. What Vehk said made sense...in a strange religious way.

"My turn, if I have sufficiently answered that question" Vehk grinned cheekily. "May I know about your childhood?"

When she heard his question to her she slowly put her tea down, a slightly distant look coming to her face, yet still emotionless somehow. "I Don't think on it much, but what I can remember of it...My father owned a general store by the ocean side in a small fishing village, it was nothing big, but it was one of the only general stores, the town was poor, so not much business happened day to day. But from a very young age he would have me steal things for the store, so the family could keep most of the earnings of the store and not have to spend it on items for the store. When I was around 15, we adopted Inderele, her family having been taken away by some kind of beast. A little later, my brother came along. I never was liked by my mother and Father...so it was rough, they wanted to have a son first I guess, or at least my mother did...my father hated me for being small. Yet he used it for everything he could, the shop got to be known for having expensive things in it, my sister and I getting better at stealing, my brother was training to be the best fighter in the land. It was simple, and it was hard, but enjoyable because of Indrele...I raised her because mother never wanted to have daughters." She stopped talking, not wanting to say anything about how she had been beaten or how she lived in the attic, she loved her family dearly...but she knew now that the way she had been treated, by her parents mostly, wasn't right.

"Now it's your turn Vehk...I know nothing of your childhood..."

Vehk laid back against the roof as he listened to Katriel's story. The stars and night sky was a comforting beauty from behind his blindfold. It was a sharp contrast to the story that Katriel told. "There's not much to say, I'm afraid. I never knew my parents. My first memories are that of all of my childhood. Being an orphan, living in the waterworks of Vivec. I didn't even have a name back then. Other than s'wit, and other insults. Vehk was a nickname given to me, because as a child I liked to pose like Vivec himself. I had to learn to steal to survive. I saw all of the thieves, and cutthroats as my family. I loved them. Then I learned the value of family.- "

Vehk paused, and added, "-Before I met the Brotherhood, mind you. Someone stole from the Ordinators. The people who raised me turned me in falsely. The scars I'm sure you saw all over my body were caused by the Ordinators. I was only eight years old."

Vehk sat back up briefly to sip his tea before laying back down again. "That page that you accidentally left in my room at the lodge mentioned Indrele. What happened?"

She had listened intently, shock and disgust on her face when she mentioned how he was beaten and betrayed. When his next question came, she swallowed slightly and looked away over the city, looking for the right words.

"She...She was murdered...."

Katriel took a deep breath, she might as well tell someone...it did her no good to keep it in. "It was on my twentieth birthday, she and I had been given the day off, surprisingly, and we had spent the day at a small lake only we knew about. When we returned to our home, the shop being in the front and our residence in the back, she gave me a ring she had stolen...it was almost as beautiful as she was...but our father would have beaten both of us if I didn't give it to him...that was the mistake...as soon as I had given the ring to my father, one of the imperial guards came bursting into our home and said that one of us had stolen his families crest...the ring was his...He took me into slavery for payment, instead of turning in all of my family. You see, I took the blame...I said I had been the one to steal it, if Indrele had said she had...who knows what the man would have done. However....the day after me being taken as a slave...Indrele confessed that it was she who had taken his ring...he had come to the shop to gather some information about me...he..."

She stopped for a second, composing herself as her voice turned quiet before she began again. "He raped my sister in front of my family, saying that if she let him then he would let me go...but...instead...he trapped my family inside and set the shop on fire...burning them all alive....I didn't find out what had truly happened to them until twenty five years later...all that time, he used my sister as leverage for his gains....to force me to do anything he wished...for he would threaten her safety...She died because she loved me...because she wanted to protect me...as I wished to protect her."

She looked over to her friend, tears slightly running down her cheeks from the memories. Her voice was quiet, she wasn't really asking a question, she was simply wondering, "Why would you wish to come back to this world of pain and suffering Vehk? …Wouldn't it have been better to simply stay dead? …I imagine that there would be no pain where you were....why come back?"

Vehk gave her a weary smile, and a wearier tone in his reply, "Oblivion is a plane of existence, just as is Mundus. Where there is existence, there is pain. I'd rather suffer with friends." Vehk gave a half chuckle. "I suppose now I'll walk the realms of existence forever." The mer shrugged. "More time for learning all I can about the world". Vehk sat up again and finished off his tea. "The world can be cruel, but friends make it bearable. What did you do after you found your freedom?"

She looked over to her friend, a frown on her lips. "After I killed the man...I wandered....ended up running across a band of Khajiit traveling in cyrodiil, they were traders and performers, but mostly they were a family of many different bloods. They threatened me at knifepoint, but when Sarani came to see the 'dark skinned one' that her guards had caught and tied up and were abusing...she took pity on me...I had put up no fight, and she saw that somehow, I was dead, even if I still breathed and walked the face of Nirn...my soul had died, my very being."

She looked over to her friend, raising her eyebrows. "If you can believe it, I looked worse than I do even now, having traveled for a little over a month with no food and water can do that I guess...I guess I looked pitiful enough that she let me join her family and caravan...she put me in charge of the children. Simply watching them, yet the other Khajiits began warming up to me, the Argonians and other mer took longer of course...but...after a few years yet by...it was like I had a family again...they taught me things I never knew about, and I them..." She raised a brow, thinking about what Vehk had said. "What do you mean you'll walk the realms forever? Can't you just...go back?" It was obvious that Katriel didn't know much about...well...anything...of how the afterlife worked.

"What Azura did to me, this form.." Vehk took a breath before continuing. "I am still myself, but I am now part Dunmer, part Daedra. My very soul is bound to Azura, and Moonshadow. Should anything ever happen to me, I'll pop up on my feet in Moonshadow. Death becomes nothing more than a recall spell for me. I'll walk the realms forever. It is as much a blessing, as it is a curse. Such is the way of Daedric lords. Although, Azura can be the most kind, when it suits her."

Vehk furled his brow at his friend, "your story with the Khajiits is playing out like a Camoran tragedy. I imagine this is about where the story takes another pitfall. Am I right?"

He shook his head and imitated a Khajiit voice, "This one does not want to be right." Vehk offered to refill Katriel's cup, before refilling his own.

She sighed and accepted the refill, a sad smile on her lips. "This one wishes that you were wrong as well my friend...I was banished just five years back for reasons I do not know...not by Sarani, but by her daughter Khahala. Wait...you're a Daedra now?!" The look on her face was almost comical.

Vehk turned to look at Katriel’s face at just the right moment and laughed so hard he almost slipped off the roof. "Yes, I am, but mostly by name only.” After a moment of thought, Vehk smiled at Katriel and said "Well, if you're up for a bit of trouble, maybe we should hit the road with a couple of friends. Personally, I could use an adventure, and some time away from the House. Perhaps, we can get you some answers, and you can see the ones you raised again. Caravans may be hard to catch up to, but they're easy to track." Vehk spoke hopefully, and without thinking about the war. He didn't even realise the likeliness of her little ones having been drafted into the Dominion ranks. Starlight seemed to shimmer in his eyes, no pun intended, behind his blindfold as he drank his tea.

In truth, he grew wary of this foolish war, and House Hlaalu. He needed time away from Idas, and anyone commanding him into battle.

Katriel didn't like being laughed at, but she couldn't help smiling at her friend, but a sigh was all she could say to finding her Caravan. "Vehk...it'd be a bit harder than you're suggesting...the children were enlisted....all of them...in the battle that took your life, I found two of them...Iniana was one of the only Bosmers in the caravan, she ran away after I killed two men about to have their way with her, she killed the third...and Ja'Denif...he was killed...I don't know how many others have been killed."

Her sadness suddenly turned to anger as her jaw tightened and she slowly stood, her coat moving for the first time in their talkings as the wind picked up slightly. "But, I'm going to figure out why they were enlisted...Khahala was always selfish...and I can more than guess that she is at the heart of this..."

She looked over at Vehk, offering him her hand to stand, a smirk on her face. She was more than convinced that what he had said was true, and that this was really Vehk. "Come...I bet that I will not be the only one of your friends to react how I did to you being...somewhat...alive again"

Vehk looked at Katriel like she had toiletry hanging off of her boot. “Kat, are you offering a blind mer a hand up?” He raised a teasing eyebrow from behind his silk blindfold.

She blinked for an instant, having not completely taken in his appearance. "Wha...?" It was then that she noticed the blindfold...she paled....hadn't he been looking right AT her now and then??? Maybe he had cliff racer like hearing now and simply knew where she was? She shook her head gently. "It...it depends..."

Katriel moved silently forward a step to wave a hand in front of his eyes...hopefully she hadn't made a huge fool of herself... "Are you actually blind...? And if so....how did THAT happen?"

Vehk remained silent for a few moments before it became clear he was fighting with all of his might to not crack a smile. Eventually he couldn’t contain himself and busted up laughing. "No, I'm not blind. I wear this because the eyes of my new body betray what I am. This blindfold is an illusion. I could use illusion magic to change my eyes, but this offers me an advantage with strangers."

Vehk gratefully accepted her help up and said. He chuckled, and shoulder bumped her. With a grin, he pulled the blindfold up to his forehead. It was more of a symbolic gesture, really. He opened his Daedric eyes, and they sparkled like twilight. He had no iris, or pupil. Just an appearance with all the colours and look of a natural pearl being illuminated. They even gave off a bit of light that reflected on Katriel's hand. She jumped slightly in surprise, relief was clear in her eyes however as she soon relaxed. At least he could see, but the eyes were kinda unnerving.

Vehk looked at Kat, with a nervous smile on his face. "What do you think? The mark where Aicanlo's great-sword looks like this too."

Katriel had never seen anything with eyes like that, and it made her slightly uncomfortable to see them on her friend. "I think....I....may be one of the only people to say that they have a friend with eyes like that" She sighed gently before putting her hands on her hips. Her temper had gotten shorter because of her lack of food.

She smirked. "That's a nifty trick though...imagine the looks on people’s faces if they ever faced you in battle...they'd be expecting an easy kill only to have you being able to see their movements" She shook her head with amusement, a half smile on her lips. "You would think of something like that Vehk..."

Vehk grinned, "precisely right my friend." Vehk looked at Katriel, who now had her hands on her hips. Her coat was pulled back, and exposed her new armour. Vehk was shocked! It wasn't her own, clearly. The stomach was exposed and the neckline was lower than it used to be. "What in Oblivion are you wearing? Don't misunderstand, you flatter the armour, but an exposed stomach isn't the Kat I know. We should have Xi make you some new armour. May I make some plating to cover the important areas of the leather?"

She snorted as he noticed her armor change, a slight blush going over her cheeks yet she nodded that both sounded good to her. "I had little choice...after the battle...well...my armor was beyond saving...took this off of a Bosmer, was going to fix it myself....but..."

She shrugged, because of the pain in her shoulder she hadn't been able to sew...or cut the leather needed. "Some....issues....came up...let’s just say I tried, and failed, because of a shoulder injury..."

She made a face suddenly. "I never knew that a simple armor change could be so...annoying, I came up here because I get no peace! The General is about to have a fit because most of the stupid men in the army have gotten their fingers broken in mysterious ways"

Vehk scoffed, "mysterious indeed!"

 

She smiled wickedly in response, it was good to have her friend back, who else could she cause trouble with other than Vehk?!

 

 

Join in on the fun! Our next thread will be chasing down Katriel's old caravan! We'll be deciding a name, and skeleton plot soon! 

 

Alandauron
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re: A Dawn For Every Dusk

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I hate it!  I love it!  I want to do a dance and slash around wildly....umm

 

Good stuff guys!



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AngelofDance5613
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re: A Dawn For Every Dusk

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lol, thanks Al xD



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