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Written By Sydney

Sept. 16, 2020, 6:17 p.m.(1/14/1014 AR)

My mind drifts often to poetry in these winter evenings. I'm certainly not the type to try my hand at it unless I've been suitably inspired or have been drinking heavily and therefore am suffering a considerable lapse of judgement, but it holds meaning to me. I've been reading more of it, trying to linger on each poem, and ruminating on what each one might mean.

What was the author thinking? What were the yearnings or fancies in their heart that made them put pen to paper and scribe dream to Dream, for some or none to read? Too often, I find I'm not able to decipher the 'meaning behind the meaning' that others purport to see, but there's beauty in something that can be looked at by many and seen identically by none.

How does it even work? I understand those that have a rhyming cadence, but these seem to be regarded scornfully or somehow lesser to the poetry that is merely sloshed about the page.

Who is to say
where poems begin
and where they
end --
When the rules
if there are such
aren't writ in stone
but float through
the sky

Is this poetry? Is it just a sentence that has been stretched and carried wastefully across parchment? I confess, I do not know the difference.

I find it thoroughly maddening.

And captivating.

But also maddening.

Written By Serapion

Sept. 16, 2020, 5:17 p.m.(1/14/1014 AR)

This has been an exciting and interesting new beginning for me, to say the least. I never thought that I'd have the pleasure of getting to personally know members of House Thrax or the royal family. I've been in this city for barely a few days and already doors have opened for me. I was invited to join the Order of East Light, with extra equipment paid for by the Order. A boon for a man like myself. My knighthood was impromptu and I fear securing a decent suit of armour would have been difficult for me. Even now, I can scarcely believe it.

The city of Arx seems to present new opportunities for me. Opportunities for knowledge. Opportunities for a new life. And perhaps opportunities to become like the heroes I grew up reading and hearing about. I know not what the future has in store for me, but I pray that I live through this new knightly life.

Maybe House Thrax will give me some land back home. A small tower with a nice library to retire to in my old age.

Written By Gwenna

Sept. 16, 2020, 4:22 p.m.(1/14/1014 AR)

Despite it being winter, which makes travel difficult, I find myself longing to be in Farhaven. I feel a need to walk through the forests, with nothing but the sounds of snow falling or the occasional scurrying animal to disturb my thoughts. I want to spend an evening working on tapestries with my mother and listening to stories told around the fire. She is a formidable woman, but also warm and full of good advice when I need it most. I suppose I'm just a bit homesick, with winter having come to Arx.

Or maybe it's something deeper that I just can't quite put my finger on yet.

Written By Bree

Sept. 16, 2020, 2:25 p.m.(1/14/1014 AR)

Is the life of one man worth more than the lives of five?

Written By Tanith

Sept. 16, 2020, 12:14 p.m.(1/14/1014 AR)

I had a conversation with Rukhnis some months back about joining the Physician's guild. We'd decided that since I wasn't ready to give me whole focus to improving my skills and attending to them that need it, I shouldn't join up; yet. Maybe when my life shifts into a later chapter, and my world doesn't have so many things in it to distract me. Maybe then.

Despite this, though, I find my focus arrested by some of the more physical aspects of being a Harlequin. I don't mind it, my mother finds it hilarious; I delivered her of several of my brothers and now this practical experience has led into something that's too involved to be a 'hobby' but not consistent enough to be considered a 'career'. Not that you need anything but a good track record to be pronounced a 'mid-wife', a good reputation under Death's Devoted isn't a bad thing either.

Written By Eirene

Sept. 16, 2020, 10:40 a.m.(1/13/1014 AR)

My children love winter far more than I do. This is their second winter in Arx and they're still transfixed by snow. They play snowball fights in the garden with the Riven children and they go ice-sliding on the pond. I've neither encouraged nor discouraged this, but I do regularly check to make sure the ice is frozen over. Not like they could drown in the pond or get trapped under the ice, but mothers have this way of worrying about the worst.

Being pregnant is an excellent excuse to nestle by a fire and work on my embroidery. It has flowers and says several lovely obscenities, before anyone things I've gone domestic on them. Between the Archives, the Grace, the Fox, and the Riven study, I've got a routine settled into place. Traversing the city while pregnant and in the snow isn't the smartest thing I've done, but when was I ever accused of being a genius?

I don't like being in the Archives alone. I make sure Planchet and Carissa stay close. I just feel... better for them there, even if it means they're listening in on my Whites. I don't feel like recording any Black Journals any time soon for reasons.

Written By Piccola

Sept. 16, 2020, 8:41 a.m.(1/13/1014 AR)

Relationship Note on Esme

To the learned Lady Esme of House Fidante,

I feel a reply is warranted to you is fain, even if the matter is on one on which I would not claim a scholar's expertise.

I do not deny the importance of marriage to our people, our culture, and our society. I do not deny the honor that it brings to those who agree to what you have described as a courageous sacrifice. And I do not deny that love is rare and easily torn to pieces.

What I find fault in is how love, for all of its rarity and beauty, seems oft discarded, undervalued, or mistreated.

If marriage is the constancy of the sun rising at the advent of each day, then I say that love is candlelight. I appreciate the security of believing the dawn will come, but I cannot deny the comfort from the flame in a darkened room. Without it, how would we pierce the night? How would I ever see the serene peace of my lover in slumber?

I profess that I may have more in common with the night patrol than the earliest cockerel.

I know you would not forget of love or its importance. I wish I knew more about it so that I would not feel so cold when my bed is empty or the wicks are burned down. What I believe is that, naively or densely, I would rather spend my life holding an eternal flame upon a parapet than to look forlornly from a window at the watch that ends the night.

I think such souls are the rarest and most beautiful of all flowers.

Written By Ophelia

Sept. 16, 2020, 8:19 a.m.(1/13/1014 AR)

Relationship Note on Luca

I bet you're either shaking your head or laughing to the point of tears. Maybe both!

Yeah. Probably both. I love you.

Written By Vitalis

Sept. 16, 2020, 3:08 a.m.(1/13/1014 AR)

Relationship Note on Piccola

This couple were clearly not Lycene.

Written By Alarissa

Sept. 15, 2020, 9:15 p.m.(1/12/1014 AR)

The days pass, easily enough. Despite the snow. Another year comes and goes and I found myself quietly celebrating my thirtieth birthday in the estate, with my husband and our children. A quiet evening within the confines of the atrium and unwrapping yet another... interesting arm designed by Astrid. This one with fabrics all tied in knots around more wood. Who is helping her with these, I do not know. But without doubt, I shall have to wear it at some point.

Future jewelry designer, she will not be.

Snow gathers on the lips of the frames in the atrium and I find myself sitting quietly there and looking up. Watching.

Written By Esme

Sept. 15, 2020, 8:01 p.m.(1/12/1014 AR)

Relationship Note on Piccola

My Dearest General

I know that you did not ask, but I feel that I would like to give my thoughts on marriage as well. I cannot speak to the rightness or the wrongness of these feelings and thoughts. For I would not wish to shackle you to a path that was not meant to be yours. Instead, I would rather praise that you know where to put your steps and your footfalls.

Marriage is the greatest act of fidelity that a person can offer. I do not speak of fidelity as in the marriage bed, but in the honor and the oaths of the realms and our lives. So then, do we raise up these choices of honor in reverence. Limerance is a God of Concepts. This means it is hard to touch the cornerstones of what makes up those that follow him and some lack a physical context. For how do you hug a concept?

I have said that marriage is a sacrifice. It is not that I think that sacrifice is one that shackles or that you must lose yourself or your identity. I believe it is a courageous sacrifice. To know that you are willing to put the future before the present. That you are willing to take what comes with the oaths and honor of a hero facing what it must. That you do so with your head high and you know what you are placing to the side to do this.

Love is not marriage. I believe deeply in love and it has touched my life. I have been rendered to the highest wings that one could fly and dropped to the depths so low that my heart felt like it would no longer beat. Still, the sun came up. On both times. Still the moment faded. It was not the same as it was when in that moment we felt the heady embrace of it's siren call. Love is but a moment. That moment could be a few seconds, a few days, a few months, or years, but it is always fading. It is always momentary. It does not mean that it is not as real a concept as any concept that exists. We adore it and praise it for the rarity of it. For the rare moments that can create it, and the easy ability that it can be shattered.

Marriage is the morning rising. It is the sun that comes up no matter what the night before brought to you. It is the constant. It is embracing that you are to stand to your ideals, your oaths, your fidelity of honor. It is to take your oaths not to faith but to future. To honor the lands you are part of. To craft a legacy that is to be remembered. It is steady. It is the life breath that is needed to continue. It is a way to mend a wrong. It is a way to create a new. It is an honor. It is to stand true when all other things and people have faded. It is to be written upon the shrine scrolls of what was and what is. It is a concept come to life. It is where we can point to the concepts we try to explain. We can see concepts in mortal form as they unite and form something lasting.

For all my words, I have a summary. Love is fleeting and emotional. It inspires. It surrenders. Marriage is constant. It is strength. It is will. It is fidelity. It is oath. It is honor.

Written By Valdemar

Sept. 15, 2020, 7:36 p.m.(1/12/1014 AR)

If you live in a society with others, compromise becomes necessary. Not everyone can have everything that they want, so in order for there to be peace, some must sacrifice some of the things they want, whether you're speaking of comfort, traditions, certain freedoms or anything else one might be asked to give up. Marriage is a part of this society, and thus compromise might well be necessary when going into one, whether on the parts of the husband and wife, or in the case of noble matches, on the parts of their houses. But even if you don't marry, compromise will become necessary if you wish to remain a part of society. If you've avoided it thus far, I congratulate you on your good luck.

Written By Medeia

Sept. 15, 2020, 5:45 p.m.(1/12/1014 AR)

We all have our stories. The ones we tell so others might glean some idea of who we are. Not just by name or station, but by deed and heart. Sometimes those stories are embellished or muddied by the passage of time. Others, those stories are outright lies. I wonder, does the outright lie matter less if it is meant to protect you - or others? Or if the lie is told for you and you simply repeat it?

Don't let other people write your story. They'll get it wrong, and you'll lose precious time not knowing your own heart.

Written By Gerrick

Sept. 15, 2020, 4:44 p.m.(1/12/1014 AR)

The Hopeless Dancer.

My mother would tell me the story of how my father, the mythical creature, used this sword to defend our home. The sword came from his father, and their father before them, and so on. Each generation would add something to the sword. It was getting to the point, where I would have to go talk with the smith in town to find out the history of the sword, and if in fact it came from my father.

Alas, the smith would never tell me who used the sword last. Though I would confirm that it was past down through my family. And each of his family or apprentices knew of the sword, as they would make adjustments to it over the years.

It was tradition. When the sword is yours, you adjust it to your needs.

This meant that what started as a single blade set off center of the hilt with a second fuller blade on the other side, then became two separate blades coming off of the hilt at even points, then a sharp block was added to come off of the hilt on the top of the blade, and further added and adjusted by myself to add a blood channel on the lower blade with a swoop at the hilt to push blood and remains away from the user.

The fact that I let my guard down and allowed my wary body to sleep on the ground before entering the city, and the sword has gone missing… Only makes me angry, and I can feel my ancestors questioning my motives.

Though, with all of the additions to the sword. Perhaps it was time to start anew, as I have no one to pass it on to. Or, maybe it is time to fully retire. The last time I let my guard down, I earned my scar, the very one that nearly killed me. …

Written By Jael

Sept. 15, 2020, 2:58 p.m.(1/12/1014 AR)

Relationship Note on Nicia

It did not occur to me that Jonathan and Cassander would end up being so close in age. Pregnancy does tend to narrow one’s focus, I find.

I’m glad they will grow up together, and if Cassander ends up setting an example for Jonathan...I’m sorry.

Written By Piccola

Sept. 15, 2020, 1:16 p.m.(1/12/1014 AR)

Relationship Note on Iseulet

I appreciate your thoughts on the matter.

If marriage requires compromise, it is perhaps not for me. I have been told that compromise is an adjustment of conflicting interests as gives each adversary the satisfaction of thinking she has got what she ought not to have, and is deprived of nothing except what was justly his due. If so, I believe I've neither the authority to demand from someone what I ought not have nor to the temerity withhold from another what is justly theirs.

I wish you nothing but joy in discovering that which I have neither the time nor the inclination to seek.

Written By Gerrick

Sept. 15, 2020, 12:45 p.m.(1/12/1014 AR)

Lady Caprice has agreed to take me on as student, so that I can learn more than simply darning socks. I fear that the lady does not know of the headache that she has agreed to.

Mother taught me enough, so that I could fix my own clothing when the state changed from wearable to don't let company see you in that. Though, we never had matching threads, and thus, all of my clothing has become over the years more patchwork that original design.

I look forward to the lessons.

Written By Cirdan

Sept. 15, 2020, 8:05 a.m.(1/11/1014 AR)

I like winter as much as I like summer, and I do like summer.

I also do not have enough to write on and on about the subject of this seasonal rivalry. Carry on!

Written By Iseulet

Sept. 15, 2020, 6:33 a.m.(1/11/1014 AR)

Relationship Note on Piccola

Why didn't they try standing up? Or hanging upside down? There are more than two. Maybe someone should write a book on this to prevent future foibles such as this.

I think marriage is also about compromise. Apparently also about creativity.

As a personal note I look forward to the day when I find a suitable match. Marriage is about so much more than what you've boiled it down to.

Perhaps I'm romanticizing it too much? Maybe because I've chased it for too long. I guess you always want what you can't have.

No, we don't know each other at all but... well... having so much time on my hands I often spend it reading random whites to catch up on my gossip. Thank you for such a thought provoking entry.

Written By Sydney

Sept. 15, 2020, 1:15 a.m.(1/11/1014 AR)

There are few pains fiercer than the self-inflicted.

I can stand in a ring and go toe-to-toe with someone and hardly bat an eyelash until I'm kissing dust, but getting a splinter underneath my toe nail made me howl. Haven't done that in a spell. I hope it doesn't fester.

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