Third Edition

Moderator: Logos Invictus

 
User avatar
Friv
Essence 6
Essence 6
Topic Author
Posts: 1072
Joined: 28 Jan 2006, 00:42
Title: Splinter of Mokrelus
Exalt: Elemental
Fighting Style: Spell-Fu
Artifact: The Crucible of Tarim
Location: Toronto
Contact:

The Dynasty's Shadowed Light, Part 2

20 Jan 2007, 16:24

Being Step One of how Fokuf gets from Point A to Point B

-----

When he was 15 years old, Tepet Fokuf nearly died.

It was his cousin Vallen who found him, in the end. The young Exalt had missed Fokuf at dinner and, spurred by a presentiment of disaster, came upstairs to find out what the letter Fokuf had received from his father meant. It was he that discovered his cousin missing, his bed unslept in, and he that set out into the winter snows to search throughout the night, with the others suggesting that Fokuf was merely hiding somewhere and might be found in the morning.

It was Vallen that found Fokuf lying in the snow, his lips blue, wearing nothing but his evening dress. He was semi-conscious, mumbling incoherent messages under his breath, and he still clutched the letter from his family to his chest, as though releasing it was impossible.

Given your continued failure to Exalt, I do not see a valid reason for you to attend the Spiral Academy. Instead, I am beginning inquries about a school more in line with your limited capabilities. We will expect you to return home at the end of this school year while we determine what your place in the household should be.

Later, after the instructors had treated him for advanced hypothermia, Vallen asked the question, sitting at his cousin’s bedside “Why?”

Fokuf could not look at him. Instead, he simply lay back, closing his eyes. “I just… I wanted Mela to choose me. But she ignored me.” He stared up at the ceiling, and Vallen sighed.

“Not everyone Exalts, Fokuf.” The words were soft, as he searched for some way to bridge the yawning abyss opening between them.

“No.” Fokuf’s voice was flat. “Only the deserving.”


When he was twenty-five years old, Tepet Fokuf received his first bureaucratic posting, in the city of Greyfalls.

It was nothing important. His secondary school grades had been uniformly mediocre, to his father’s lack of surprise and his cousin’s annoyance. Vallen maintained that Fokuf had exceptional talent, but no one else seemed to see it, and his results were certainly far from excellent. Rather than be forced to deal with him up close, his father chose to send him as far from the Blessed Isle as possible, hoping that some hardship might “shock some sense into the boy”. The day that he left, Vallen visited him once again. Now a young man, graduated from the House of Bells and with a strong career ahead of him in the North, Vallen smiled at his cousin and friend as the two toasted each other’s postings.

“Yours will be a great career, Vallen.” Fokuf smiled honestly, something that he seemed to do less and less as the years wore on. “You have incredible talent.”

“So do you. Use it.” Fokuf made a dismissive gesture, and Vallen gave him an annoyed look. “I know that others in your class took credit from your work. And that half the reason you did so poorly was because you finished their work instead of your own. Why are you doing this to yourself?”

After a few moments, Fokuf sighed, and stood. He walked to the window, and looked out of it. “What do you see out there, Vallen?”

“The port of Arjuf.” Vallen stepped up beside him with a smile, laying a hand on his shoulder. “The ships sailing out towards the horizon, and the glories of the Empire.”

Fokuf nodded. “I see a world that has no place for me.” When Vallen looked at him sharply, he smiled sadly. “I’m not about to do anything rash, if that’s what you’re afraid of. But I have no prospects for advancement, no way to be superior to the Exalted that run the Thousand Scales. Better that I know my place.”

Vallen made a rude noise. “Your place is whatever you make it, Fokuf.”

“Yours is.” Fokuf smiled again, and turned to his cousin. “Your fate is to rule, Vallen. Mine is to serve. There is no shame in it.”

“Not to the world, perhaps.” Vallen turned away. “But to you?”

Fokuf had no answer for him.


When he was thirty-five years old, Tepet Fokuf returned home from Greyfalls, with a number of glowing reports of his affability, and fewer of his talents. All involved admitted that he made things run more smoothly, but he was passive – no great ideas or daring choices for Fokuf, not when someone else could make a decision that he could follow. His father, somewhat mollified that his son had not managed to engineer the city’s conquest, gave him a few minor financial jobs to undergo, and the results were much the same. Fokuf might have some talent; it was hard to tell, because he had no drive, no desire to become more than he was. He spent the next ten years in the Imperial City, just another cog in the Dynasty’s machine, and watched as Exalts less qualified than he was passed him by. He had few friends, but no enemies – a rarity in the competitive politics of the Scarlet Dynasty.

When he was forty-five, Vallen was given a new posting, further afield than ever. As was their tradition, the two met to toast his success, and Vallen kept his discontent with Fokuf’s lot quiet. Instead, Fokuf asked him about the posting.

“Nothing major, really. The icewalkers are causing trouble in Linowan territory, and the Wind-dancer is bringing a legion over to remove them.” Vallen chuckled, shaking his head. “I’ve been promoted to Dragonlord, if you can believe it.”

“Of course I believe it.” Fokuf chuckled. “I always told you that you were destined for greatness.”

“And you were destined to serve.” The words slipped out, and Vallen saw the shadows falling across Fokuf’s face. “I still don’t believe that, cousin.”

“Believe what you will. I am content with my lot. Happy, even.” Fokuf shrugged. “I only ever wanted to serve the Realm. I think the Dragons passed me over because I never had the desire to improve myself. I truly am better suited where I am.”

“You could be so much more, though.” Vallen, frustrated, finished his wine.

“But I won’t.” Fokuf smiled again, patting his cousin on the shoulder. “You will become a great general, and I will be a quiet bureaucrat, and I will be happy.” And with that, he deftly turned the conversation to less controversial matters, and Vallen gratefully accepted his lead. The next morning, he left for Linowan territory, to begin the war against the Bull of the North.

One year later, Fokuf was appointed Regent of the Realm.
"Some people walk in the rain. Others merely get wet."

Patchwork Champions - You say "to-ma-toe", I say "world-ravaging-laser-beam".
 
User avatar
BrilliantRain
Essence 8
Essence 8
Posts: 5362
Joined: 17 Aug 2005, 14:50
Title: The City of Mod
Exalt: Alchemical
Fighting Style: Primordial-Machine Weaving
Artifact: Eye of Autochthon
Location: Nurad
Contact:

07 Feb 2007, 11:00

So I had a scary thought. While one assumes that the Dawns and Twilights were the ones who ran the Defense Grid in the First Age (the Dawns because it was a weapon and the Twilights because it was a device), it seems likly that the Zeniths and Eclipses, being the heads of the government, probably were the ones who could call for it's activation. (I would assume that there was a Night who was given the deactivation codes and a secret way in, just in case.)

Depending on the setup of the controls and the command system, I could see the Eclipse Tepet Fokuf potentially easily gaining control of the Defense Grid and becoming the Shadowed Sun Emperor.

This has been a scary thought for all Dragon-Blooded.
Avatar by Girl Genius

Mod Text is in Green

Do you have enough Tools, King of All Craftsmen?
 
User avatar
Friv
Essence 6
Essence 6
Topic Author
Posts: 1072
Joined: 28 Jan 2006, 00:42
Title: Splinter of Mokrelus
Exalt: Elemental
Fighting Style: Spell-Fu
Artifact: The Crucible of Tarim
Location: Toronto
Contact:

08 Feb 2007, 02:05

BrilliantRain wrote:
Depending on the setup of the controls and the command system, I could see the Eclipse Tepet Fokuf potentially easily gaining control of the Defense Grid and becoming the Shadowed Sun Emperor.

This has been a scary thought for all Dragon-Blooded.


You know, on the current list (as I construct the plot threads for Dynasty's Shadowed Light) of who might become Emperor or Empress, a Solar Anathema who controls the Realm Defense Grid is actually going to wind up around #3 or 4 on the Top Ten Bad Ideas Who Are Contenders For The Throne list for an Immaculate. There are at least two other choices that would be far worse (and no, not Mnemon. She definately ranks lower than Solar Anathema on an Immaculate's Bad Idea list.)

*cue ominous music*
"Some people walk in the rain. Others merely get wet."

Patchwork Champions - You say "to-ma-toe", I say "world-ravaging-laser-beam".
 
User avatar
Kailan
Essence 7
Essence 7
Posts: 4630
Joined: 30 Mar 2006, 04:45
Title: Pattern Spider
Exalt: God
Fighting Style: I will nom your tasty paradox
Contact:

08 Feb 2007, 09:51

That would be an awesomely evil plot idea for a DB story, though. >:3
Text in red is modvoice.

(11:18:32 PM) Xanti: The Bronze Faction does not care about your stupid anathema feefees.

This signature was foretold... BY GYROMANCY.
 
User avatar
BrilliantRain
Essence 8
Essence 8
Posts: 5362
Joined: 17 Aug 2005, 14:50
Title: The City of Mod
Exalt: Alchemical
Fighting Style: Primordial-Machine Weaving
Artifact: Eye of Autochthon
Location: Nurad
Contact:

08 Feb 2007, 23:34

And, as long as I'm having ideas, the Fokuf comic in the Blessed Isle book makes me think of a hippy or surfer dude. In your story, the fact that he is really an amazingly competant person combined with the surfer dude angle, to remind me of another of your characters.
Avatar by Girl Genius

Mod Text is in Green

Do you have enough Tools, King of All Craftsmen?
 
User avatar
Deaths Pale Mistress
Essence 7
Essence 7
Posts: 4757
Joined: 01 Apr 2006, 02:18
Title: Deathlord-Empress of the Underworld
Exalt: Ghost
Fighting Style: Close-quarters combat
Artifact: The Kiss of Midnight
Location: Unholy Stygia

09 Feb 2007, 00:20

Wait a minute, Fokuf isnt Exalted? Really?
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.
 
User avatar
Friv
Essence 6
Essence 6
Topic Author
Posts: 1072
Joined: 28 Jan 2006, 00:42
Title: Splinter of Mokrelus
Exalt: Elemental
Fighting Style: Spell-Fu
Artifact: The Crucible of Tarim
Location: Toronto
Contact:

09 Feb 2007, 09:00

Deaths Pale Mistress wrote:
Wait a minute, Fokuf isnt Exalted? Really?


Canonically, no. They wouldn't trust an Exalt on the throne. ;) He's just a middle-aged mortal known for not having any enemies, or ambitions - the perfect choice for a Regent.
"Some people walk in the rain. Others merely get wet."

Patchwork Champions - You say "to-ma-toe", I say "world-ravaging-laser-beam".

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 13 guests