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Uleni Athram
post Nov 22 2017, 02:59 PM
Post #1


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00:
Purple Prose (1):
Gangster Glamour
YLENNO



Skin the color of amber; hair the color of smuggler’s gold; cabochon eyes as glittering and as unfeeling as the grey-iron surface of a prison knife ready to wound. Born from metal, the way he bends light around him; his entire being is liquid imperfection, chrome fire tamed and beaten into a seamless vessel worn by this thug, this lowlife who recalls the repugnant beauty of those exiled kings and cruel kratocrats.

Pale-snake trophies openly on display; across his nose, below his left eye, just above his lip, a hundred more in other places— medals, he says to himself, medals gifted to him by the underworld through endless gang feuds, alleyway bushwhackings and urban war-waging he openly embraced before the age of fifteen.

He is proud of these scars. They tell his courage and story.

His every movement is wild lightning. His every smile is cut with poison; it shines like baby diamonds in the dark and carries a thousand different secrets. When he speaks, he speaks with the weighted wisdom of the street-meats and the demonic persuasiveness of the drug dealers; he can talk you into tying the noose around your neck, he can talk you into snorting the white sugar off the table, he can talk you into selling yourself for strangers — and you’d do all these things with a smile, if you let him.

Ink. He wears his victories on his skin. On his back sprawl the Prince of Cats and the Goblin King, locked in eternal combat and hateful intercourse— his reward for four hundred straight wins in the underground fighting pits of the Cheydinhal Orums. Across his chest rise the spindly Towers of Miscarcand, five wretched things with Stars at the top of each; one Tower speaking for a year in prison, one Star signifying a successful escape. On one side of his neck, a decapitated Boethiah; on the other, a Fleur-de-Lis pierced with a dirk; on his throat a cracked Amulet of Kings — sigils. Sigils of syndicates now extinct by his hand. Under his right ear a Dragon pierced with eleven arrows; his quota of assassinated legion captains. Under his left a Rose with four Crying Eyes for petals; the number of whôres he liberated from abusive pimps. A smiling mouth shaped like a tear just under his right eye — a gift from his inmates when he turned eighteen inside.

He is proud of these tattoos. They proclaim his power and authority.



This post has been edited by Uleni Athram: Jun 24 2018, 01:18 PM


--------------------
She said I'm insane, yeah
I might blow my brains out
Xanny numb the pain, yeah
Please, Xanny make it go away
I'm committed, not addicted, but it keep controlling me
All that pain, now I can't feel it, I swear that it's slowing me
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Acadian
post Nov 22 2017, 06:27 PM
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Joined: 14-March 10
From: Las Vegas



Welcome to the Arena of Fan Fic, Uleni!

Yenno has always been a fun and interesting character and I'm glad to see you sharing some of his short stories with us. Thanks for letting us know your intent of sporadic short stories as the mood strikes you - sounds fun.

Plenty of description here and you have a nice way with that. smile.gif


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TheCheshireKhajiit
post Nov 23 2017, 07:13 AM
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From: Sheogorath's shrine talking to myselves!



Khajiit believes that every human soul has a savage spirit forged into it. For some people, it’s buried deep down and confined in heavy, unbreakable chains. For others that spirit has been given free reign and has consumed them. Some lucky people are able to tap into that savage spirit and present works that speak to that spirit in other human beings. This one believes you are such a person. You, sir, wrote this like a Warrior Poet. The language you used here is beautiful, for the most part, despite the fact the subject matter is decidedly not. Well, not by most modern standards any way. Khajiit appreciates works that speak his savage spirit, whatever the media. Well done.


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"Family is an odd thing, is it not? Defined by blood, separated by blood, joined by blood. In the end, it's all just blood."
-Dhaunayne Aundae

May you walk on warm sands!
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mALX
post Nov 28 2017, 09:25 PM
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From: Cyrodiil, the Wastelands, and BFE TN




GAAAAAH !!!!! YLENNO !!!! But you said nothing about his hair that defied gravity on one side! (I still pictured it though, lol). Awesome to see you bring Ylenno back to us, he is always thought of and missed when not around = like you!!!

Awesome Write, it has been too long since I've seen any offering from you; even in the RP sections!






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Uleni Athram
post Jun 16 2018, 12:23 PM
Post #5


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:0 :0 :0 :0 :0

Wot dis, you say? An update? A thread about Ylenno changing titles? Into Uleni’s Collections? Woooooot?

First off, HA! I wasn’t kidding when I told you guys earlier that my posting rate would be abysmal, eh? It be like that, tbh. Inspiration is hard to come by nowadays and my muse, though inelegantly persistent in her ways to motivate me, was just ... so dry. She still is, if I’m telling the truth, but once I really thought about it, part of that dryness was that me focusing on a single character just invited quick burnout. Enter the reason why the title changed. From now on, this thread would be just that; a shared collection of short stories of my various characters (entities inside my head that have been stirring around for years, finally given voice) in my take of Tamriel.

Second, *absolute* gratitude for your comments and just passing by to read my rough pieces. I appreciate it tremendously. In fact, let me address you individually.

@Acadian: Thanks, Paladin! It’s good to be back here, sporadic though my participation is, LOL. Hopefully this little thread of mine would finally make me dig my heels in and just be a little more permanent eh?

@KatManDude: You say that with your own poeticism? tongue.gif Gratitude, however. I hope my works would continue to elicit such high and deep praise from you. *bumps fist on chest twice in salutations*

@mALX: D’awwwwwwwwww! Stop it with the mushy-mushy stuff, you. You’re making me beet red and all that. And about that hair; funnily enough I was supposed to write about it too but got too deep into my own purple prose. HA! Curious how that happens. Who knows though, with Ylenno being vain as he is, we’d probably see his hair crop out in the future (we will).
****

SO! The next installment would be cut into several parts, long as it is. (I don’t think people can stomach more than 1.5k words in one sitting). Without further adieu, here it be. The next update would be posted at Wednesday, next week. See you until then!

———————

——
01
Only Easy Day (a)
LLEMORYN, BRYNLAITH, YLENNO, CYLAISE
——

Llemoryn collapsed face-first on the straw mat, his whole body shaking with pain and fatigue. He tried to get in as much air as he could, ignoring the coppery pain in his throat as he did so.

By his side knelt Brynlaith, her hands on the floor and her hair hanging limp, equally flushed and starved for breath. She came out the bloodier out of the two of them; her knuckles were bruised and her forearms were a canvas of criss-crossing scratches and cuts.

“Ysmir’s beard, Blue,” she croaked out in between gasps, “what were we thinking?

“I know,” he replied lamely, his voice barely above a whisper, “I know.”

For the umpteenth time since they began the hellish training, the Dark Elf cursed himself and his own suspect state of mind when he took up that other elf on his offer. ‘It’ll be fun,’ the damnable Bosmer had said. ‘It’ll fix dat pen-physique o’yers right quick if ya and Brinny join me an’ da ovver fellas, ey?”

He thought it would not be so bad and agreed. Brynlaith was of the same thought, already boasting that the Blades’ morning regimen would be a cake-walk. And admittedly it was reasonable at the start—just a few simple laps around the Temple, first with no gear and then with full kit.

In their naïveté, they thought that that was the only thing the exercise had entailed.

That had been their first mistake.

His second mistake was showing off in front of the Nord, exploding from his position and leading the pack as they finished off what he thought was the tenth and final lap.

He should have read the signs.

Ylenno and Cylaise, smirking at him as he passed them by? Two of the most cantankerous members of the Ten who would in a heartbeat pounce on one another with the slightest of provocations, allied against a singular target with sinister joy?

Soon he found out why.

Captain Steffan called for another lap... and another lap after that... and continued to roar out ‘another’ until it became the dirtiest word in Llemoryn’s vocabulary, until the northern wind became banshees’ blades that burned his throat and lungs and eyes, until his legs numbed into jelly, until all higher thoughts were erased from his mind and all that remained was an animal desire for rest.

When he thought he was about to faint from sheer exhaustion, the Captain suddenly did an about-face and bellowed out for the troop to climb the steps back to the Temple proper. In his exhaustion he interpreted that as the end and thanked the gods this mistake was over. He had forged ahead and sat at the base of the steps, waiting for Brynlaith so they could get some water together, when the others returned in a formation that forced out an unbelieving groan from the Elf.

The troops had paired up into twos and adjoined themselves in a cruel and unusual position.

It was the wheelbarrow and the duck-walk combined, he had realized numbly. One was crouched and held the legs of their partner upon their shoulders, the other led the both of them forwards with only the strength of their arms.

He had watched, nerveless and gaping, as one by one they climbed up the winter-slick steps with no hesitation. Ylenno, clearly enjoying the view of Cylaise’s ‘perseverance’ as she led him up, winked at his Dunmer counterpart when they ambled past him. “Bes’ part of da whole shindig if ya’as me,” he said, pointing at the crawling Breton’s skintight trousers with his pursed lips, a dreamy appreciation coloring his eyes. “Like a ripe peach! Now git goin’, ya mook! Cap’n’s about ta be here and i’onn think he’ll appreciate ya sittin’ on ya rump.”

Llemoryn had found the energy to roll his eyes, though what the other elf had said was true. So when Brynlaith arrived, sky-steel eyes wide in disbelief, Llemoryn had forced himself up on weak knees and approached her, eager to get this done fast. But as he neared his companion, Captain Steffan, brushing past them, roared out that each person had to rotate roles and scale the steps top to bottom five times.

Llemoryn and Brynlaith had taken one look at each other before cursing their own stupidity and pride.

This post has been edited by Uleni Athram: Jun 18 2018, 04:24 AM


--------------------
She said I'm insane, yeah
I might blow my brains out
Xanny numb the pain, yeah
Please, Xanny make it go away
I'm committed, not addicted, but it keep controlling me
All that pain, now I can't feel it, I swear that it's slowing me
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SubRosa
post Jun 16 2018, 09:29 PM
Post #6


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Exercise! It will kill you. I am tired just reading this. laugh.gif


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TheCheshireKhajiit
post Jun 17 2018, 12:11 AM
Post #7


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From: Sheogorath's shrine talking to myselves!



Khajiit is sensing this is going to escalate in brutality.


--------------------
"Family is an odd thing, is it not? Defined by blood, separated by blood, joined by blood. In the end, it's all just blood."
-Dhaunayne Aundae

May you walk on warm sands!
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Acadian
post Jun 17 2018, 04:28 PM
Post #8


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From: Las Vegas



Welcome back for more fan fic!

Wow, is this motely crew really undergoing some of Captain Steffan's Blades training?!? What were they thinking? tongue.gif


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Uleni Athram
post Jun 21 2018, 12:37 PM
Post #9


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From: From: From: From



@SageRose: That it will! And if you feel tired just reading it, then I will think I conveyed the attrition of the training well! Thanks for stopping by!

@CatManDude: Hey man, you’re not wrong. You’ll find out how brutal things like these can be in the next installment. Thanks for reading!

@ThePaladin: Youth, hormones and ego! What can go wrong, amirite? I’m pretty sure all of us either did or saw other people do similar things before, yeah? Thanks for coming over!

——
02
Only Easy Day ( b )
YLENNO, LLEMORYN, BRYNLAITH, CYLAISE
———

That was how they found themselves in a sorry heap at the dōjō’s floor. Llemoryn’s limbs were so battered after the merciless climbing that he necessitated the aid of Ylenno just to walk up the steps, much to the cackling amusement of the Wood Elf. Brynlaith, he noted with a touch of defeated male pride, managed well enough on her own. A fact Ylenno himself saw and could not help but remark upon.

“Don’ worry too much, ah?” he had said, patting Llemoryn’s back. “A Nord’s what she be, kid, an’ a born fighter ta boot; things like these come naturally ta her like sugar ta an ant. Ye on da ovver hand...”

Llemoryn, through what he considered a miracle from the Divines, managed to prop himself up in a sitting position. He shook his head, blinking. No use recollecting, he told himself. He looked over to Brynlaith but almost jumped out of his skin when he found Cylaise instead, filling four clay cups with grey-greenish liquid from a clear carafe. He quickly looked about—the Nord was nowhere to be seen.

Without looking at him, Cylaise spoke.

“She went outside. To vomit.”

Llemoryn gulped and gave a jittery nod, flighty and anxious the way people become when tethered to an unwanted conversational partner.

He did not like Cylaise and it was a sentiment shared by most members of the Ten; Aureliana their leader and her subordinate Keesmathai, Sartankel with her strange Redguard beliefs, Lorcan the crippled High Elf, even the silent warmonger Lugruash who subscribed to the brutish philosophy that conflict inculcated power. They all agreed that Cylaise was a little too unbalanced and a little too bloodthirsty. The dark and -though he was loathe to admit it- beautific joy she showed when they retook Kvatch from the Daedra, the eagerness and efficiency at which she tore through the hordes of the invaders, slinging eldritch spells and laughing like one taken fey... all had been chilling proof of that.

Ylenno, Nine have mercy on his soul, was either brave or mad to be bed-friends with this—

“Elf.”

The slim whisper cut through Llemoryn’s reverie and this time he did jump, wrenched into present awareness. He realized with blooming embarrassment that he had been staring at Cylaise (who was staring back) and that she was waiting for him to receive the cup she was offering for goodness knew how long. He immediately apologized and took the cup with a mumbled thanks, focusing on its contents a little too hurriedly.

A moment passed.

Her gaze lingered.

He felt her cruel brown eyes move up and down his body searching for something, felt the intensity of her stare like prey sensing the calculations of an observing predator. A chill went up his spine that had nothing to do with the outside cold.

“You did good, for a beginner.”

Courtesy dictated eye contact when offering one’s gratitude, even when the compliment came from a beast of a person, but though Cylaise had a cherubic face he found that he could not match her stare for too long. He looked at the bridge of her nose instead.

“Th-thank you,” he replied. His tongue had become wooden and he found himself second-guessing his actions; was his response a little too fast? Was his nervousness showing? He looked away. “Though I—ahem. Excuse me. Though I would’ve appreciated a little warning. Fifty laps is something I did not—“

“You will get used to it. And it impressed her, what you did. Foolish though it might have been.”

His mouth audibly snapped shut and he found himself heating up. Stendarr on a stick, I won’t live this down for a while will I?

“You are going to be joining us consistently from now on, though, yes?”

This time, Cylaise or not, his body moved of its own accord and he threw his head back, barking out a biting laugh that turned the gaze of more than a few Blades to their direction. He froze. Then he sheepishly cast his eyes down, back to his cup and its contents.

“Err. I mean, I don’t know. This is on a different level entirely compared to what they made us do back at the Fighters Guild,” he said, sweeping a hand at the scenery in front of them. “Not just the regimens, but just the whole place itself.”

It was true. The Chapter house back at Bruma had formerly been a noble’s estate and it had the size to prove its opulent past. Several dozen mercenaries called that place home, but he reckoned this dōjō, with its curving ceiling and its straw floors, could house all of them and then some. Llemoryn noted the sliding wooden doors; the smooth crimson pillars banded with bells and ropes and bronze reinforcements; the withered scriptures upon the walls with strange Akaviri characters, hanging alongside wooden swords positioned in tiered hierarchies.

‘Whole different level’ was an understatement.

This was a place that dedicated itself to war with the passion of zealots and the serenity of monks.

“And, well, I... I just don’t know.”

He had wanted to be more concise than that, but it would be like grasping at ash in the dark.

He knew what Cylaise was getting at, knew that it was more of a question to his commitment in Martin’s cause than his continued participation in some drills. And though it pained him to acknowledge it, his fervency to the Dragon’s mandate right now was uncertain. Not because he doubted the righteousness of saving Tamriel with the last Septim but because of his belief in himself.

He was no warrior like the Ansei Sartankel or the giant Lugruash; he was no cunning blackguard like Ylenno or Keesmathai; and though he had a grasp of the Art, his magical capabilities were childlike compared to the raw fury of Aureliana or the sublime wizardry of Lorcan. He sighed, sobered and feeling suddenly stupid. What he was, he noted with the certainty of a cynic, was lost. A starry eyed child suddenly caught up in the realities of the stories he grew up wishing to be a part of.

A hand, worm-cold and maggot-soft, clasped his shoulders. Llemoryn barely suppressed a shiver; her unnatural touch invited unwanted images in his mind.

“Action dispels all uncertainties,” she said. “The great are what they are because they are always in motion.”

“Umm.”

“You will not find clarity by wishing for it, is what I am telling you.”

“You’re starting to sound like Lugruash during one of his warrior-sermons,” Llemoryn pointed out, unsure if he liked the similarity. “I thought you hated him.”

From the corner of his eyes he saw a smirk blossom terribly on Cylaise’s face. Her hand stayed where it was.

“I still do. Though a simple beast, he is a follower of agreeable truths.” The hand tightened and something in the tone of her next words made him face her. “Remember. It is through the conquest of adversity that our limitations are sundered, giving sight to stars we did not know existed within us.”

“Definitely sounding like him,” he said, squirming away from her gaze. “Next you’re going to tell me to fist fight a Minotaur or... or knife a Billy just to ‘give my sight to my stars.’”

Cylaise laughed, the twinkling sound of it like crystal chimes.

Crystal chimes promising calamity.

“T’would be an elucidating experience for you, I suppose, but no. Nothing so crass or unadvisable.” Her humor vanished. “You were there when Lorcan told us his omens. War is coming, not just from Oblivion. The Dragon has need of you. We have need of you.”

Llemoryn closed his eyes, breathed in deep and looked her straight in the eye. The legitimate need for answers made him hold her stare.

But what can I do? What can I possibly offer Martin and the Empire? I’m not like you or the others. I feel so... so... useless.”

“‘S why we have ‘em things whatcha calls ‘trainin’’, ya melodramatic giggle-guar. So’s ye an’ ovver people like ye won’t feel sorry fer yerselves afta’ navel-gazing like a buncha rookie virgins.”

Both of them turned towards the source of the unmistakable voice, each with a different expression on their face; long suffering exasperation on Llemoryn’s, catty amusement on Cylaise’s.

When the Dunmer laid eyes on Ylenno, however, his annoyance disappeared and he gaped.


————




This post has been edited by Uleni Athram: Jun 21 2018, 12:38 PM


--------------------
She said I'm insane, yeah
I might blow my brains out
Xanny numb the pain, yeah
Please, Xanny make it go away
I'm committed, not addicted, but it keep controlling me
All that pain, now I can't feel it, I swear that it's slowing me
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TheCheshireKhajiit
post Jun 21 2018, 03:04 PM
Post #10


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From: Sheogorath's shrine talking to myselves!



@Uleni
Hey man, take your time. No need to rush something out because we’re here to read whenever you decide the time is right. Hope that your “recent stuff” isn’t anything too troubling. Warm sands!

Khajiit likes your jester thug and his vicious lady. goodjob.gif


--------------------
"Family is an odd thing, is it not? Defined by blood, separated by blood, joined by blood. In the end, it's all just blood."
-Dhaunayne Aundae

May you walk on warm sands!
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Acadian
post Jun 21 2018, 07:25 PM
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From: Las Vegas



We learn a lot about Cylaise and Brynlaith here. Just as Brynlaith was feeling more than bit overwhelmed, Ylenno’s injection of some wisdom all wrapped up in humor and his unique accent was quite welcome.

Sorry to hear you’re struggling with some things at the moment. Take your time and don’t rush yourself in finding the right words. Yet, don’t be afraid to throw words on paper and see how they come out – even if you toss out several versions.


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