The story of Shalkar (part 1)

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The story of Shalkar (part 1)

Postby Shalkar » Thu Apr 22, 2010 2:45 pm

Still working on an RP story for Stickshift. Meanwhile, here's part 1 of the one I wrote for Shalkar a long time ago. Enjoy!

Do you know what it’s like? To lose it all? No…not lose…to have it all taken from you. To be forced to forget your loved ones…your childhood…your self. Then to have it all come back…as a dream. A dream you wake up from and find yourself in a nightmare. But I’ve gotten ahead of myself. Let’s start with history, not grief. The grief will come on its own as it usually tends to least in my life.

I was happy once. I think I was. I can hardly grasp that notion right now. There was a time when my vision was a bit more than shades of grey. A time when food did not taste like ash in my mouth. I think I was happy then.

My father was a priest. I hated him. He was a perfect mirror of Stormwind’s society: good-looking, flamboyant, yet corrupt and rotten to the core. He didn’t love his god, whichever it was, as he never felt I needed to know. All he loved were whores and drink. Yes. You heard me correctly. Those were the only things in his life that he loved. Neither I nor my mother fitted into either category. He faked it quite well though. An upstanding priest in Stormwind’s church, answering directly to Bishop DeLavey, needed to have a happy and content family with which to maintain a pleasant relationship. So he did, as far as the Cloth was concerned.

And my mother…well let’s just say her only mistake in life was to love too much. She did everything my father faked: she loved me, she loved him, our home, our family. She took care of my every need, my every want. She made me happy. She closed her eyes at his every adultery, at his every drunken fit which ended with her in tears on the floor or me half-unconscious in a corner. She just smiled and said “Don’t worry, Shall. God will show him the right way. Soon. You’ll see!” Yes…I was called Shall once. And I actually believed her back then. That radiant face, as beautiful as I can describe in words, with tearing eyes and a sweet smile. Though my body was covered with bruises and my face with tears, I would smile with her and nod silently. I still had…what was it called? Hope? Yes…I still had it…

I wasn’t pretty, you know. It’s strange how two beautiful parents can birth an ugly child. I was tall and thin. Scrawny, one might say, with a pale, drawn face and a bony appearance…kind of like I am now. Hah! I was seated at the back of the class, in a corner where the light didn’t shine much. A walnut-tree’s thick branches shadowed my corner for most of the day. But I didn’t mind. I was silent most of the time. I either had little to say, or when I did have a thought worthy of words I saw my class-mates as…unworthy. Kind of like my father saw me whenever I dared ask him about the priestly ways. The children teased me. They’d call me “Ghost” and “Stalker”. I remember, one day, they played a little theatrical charade on me with one of them flashing a lamp in my face while another poked me with a wooden spike. “Let the light into your heart, creature of darkness!” he said. And he laughed. They all laughed. I didn’t care. I was rarely bothered by anything. Perhaps years of my father’s disciplinary treatment killed something inside…or at least made it very very quiet. But that thing began to stir. As the years passed and my father was away from home more and more often, I began to question things.

I found many answers in his books. Though he did his best to keep them away from me, it was enough to glance a title or a piece of the cover, and in a few days I would have already read that particular book. I now studied in an annex of the Stormwind library, with its immense arches and candle-lit halls. I had access to most of the library, including books that others would be denied. My father’s name held some weight with the attendants so I was rarely questioned about my lectures. I would spend hours curled in some shadowy corner, reading up on gods, The Light, The Sundering of the Moonwell, 101 Ways to Kill Silently, Harnessing Shadows and What the Light Won’t Teach You. I was fascinated about the dark side of the priestly ways, seeing it subtly manifest itself everywhere. I had this talent. To see things. Things that others might overlook. Subtle inflections of the tongue, laced with magic for a stronger effect, or priests that could silence a class with a single glance. The ways they manipulated the government officials, the ways they schemed and plotted to further their own agenda. I saw how they controlled the minds of the masses to not see. I saw these things. I saw through the veil of shadows they would weave to hide their nature. I saw the fear they instilled into anyone who would dare speak up against the Church. And I saw that I was one of the few to see. I smiled. That made me happy.

The study hall was very unlike the run-down church-halls of Northshire where I had studied before. I was still seated in a corner. But there were no shadows there. In that entire giant hall there was not a shadow to be seen. It made me feel…uneasy somehow. I still had many of my former class-mates. And my name was still Ghost or Stalker. But I looked upon them differently now. I pitied them somehow. Simple people, concerned with simple things that kept them from seeing the big picture. They would still play pranks on me. The Vampire Slayer was the worst. He had grown from poking me with sharp sticks. He had refined his technique. Every day he would find more and more ways of making my life even more wretched than it already was. I had grown too. I stopped being indifferent. It had all piled up too long and one day my bow-string snapped. It was a beautiful summer afternoon. We were in the court-yard and he was laughing after pulling his latest retarded trick. The whole class laughed with him. I wasn’t laughing. I had had enough. I got to my feet and in one swift movement I hit him in the throat with the edge of the book I had in my hands. It was a book on first aid. He let out a distorted croak and fell to the ground clutching at his wind-pipe. His face turned red and he began coughing violently. The class didn’t find it funny. I sat back down and opened the book to page 79. I could feel his heart beating against his chest. Cold sweat gripping him like a glacier. He was afraid. Of death? No…of me. I smiled. That made me happy.

News of the incident did not spread. The next day he was just fine, save for a bruise on his Adam’s apple. There was other news flying about, though. Coincidently, this was not the only out-of-the-ordinary incident concerning our family at the time. See, my father was proposed for bishop not long ago and he decided to celebrate by getting piss-drunk and raping the guard-captain’s daughter. Of course, after he sobered up, he quickly used his influence to silence all the parties involved and keep his “good name”. But he failed. The guard-captain was a stern, cold man. He had lost his son to marauding orcs and his daughter was all he had left. He would not be so easily silenced. The next day he barged into the inn where my father had spent the night, broke into his room and threw him out the window. He then proceeded to beat the daylights out of him on the streets of Stormwind, shouting at the top of his voice accusations of rape and assault. Not a single guard intervened. It wasn’t until a complement of paladins from the Cathedral of Light arrived that he was pulled away from my father. The Church would not have it. True or not, the accusations marred the immaculate image that my father was supposed to embody. So he was cast out. Out of his order. Out of the church. Out of the city.

We were forced to go north, into Brill, my mother’s birth-village. We moved in with my grandfather, a man I never saw before. I haven’t seen him, but I knew much about him, from my mother’s many stories that set him as the protagonist. He was a paladin, before a crippling injury sent him into retirement. He was actually the one to introduce my father to his daughter Shala, the one that would be my mother.

I hated Brill. It was so unlike Stormwind. No intrigue, no politics, no schemes and plots. No corruption and no people with power. Save for a few administrative figures, all were equal in the village of Brill. No dusty cobblestone streets, no busy goods markets. Just fields, trees, birds, grass. A small tavern with the same grey faces. A stables with the same grey horses. People with the same grey hair, that my father was so unlike. He never managed to adapt. He would still wear his silk priestly-garb while plowing the little plot of land my grandpa had. He would still bless everyone he spoke with as if his blessings held any strength. People avoided him and he was pretty much an outcast. I avoided him as well. The only thing I’ve ever valued at him was the way he managed to keep his status and his power despite everything he did. He had lost that and I hated him for it.

I spent most of my time with my grandfather, learning of places far a way, people long-forgotten and things that, while I had only read of, he had seen first-hand. He taught me how to hold a sword, how to bandage a wound and how to judge a situation impartially. He also began teaching me about the light, its beauty and its power. But he was interrupted. Interrupted by events grand and terrible that changed the world. Events that changed me.

My grandfather insisted that I continue my studies at the Stormwind library and used the connections he had when he was serving The Light to remove the shadow my father’s name had cast upon me. It wasn’t long before the priests agreed to receive me back in class. But there was a problem: Stromwind wasn’t exactly a stone’s throw away, and the roads were dangerous for a lone boy to walk alone. My grandfather was in no shape to accompany me and my mother had her hands full with my father’s ailing mind. So, through mere circumstance and necessity, I met... her.
[19:43:14] [82:Stickshift]: F'tagh nah'hat! I'mmathan! Sha'lub nahab! Sha'lub nahab, my friends!
[19:43:14] Twilight Initiate says: Truer words were never spoken!
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Re: The story of Shalkar (part 1)

Postby kharen » Thu Apr 22, 2010 3:12 pm

Not enough wang flinging.
You nothin' but a blikk-jeekin' dikkety dook-manker with an ook for a head!
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Re: The story of Shalkar (part 1)

Postby Ckosh » Thu Apr 22, 2010 4:21 pm

nicely done!!
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