• Closed • [Venora] Breaking The Habit

There are a number of satellite villages in Rynmere, each overseen by a Duke of one of the seven noble families, and all ultimately controlled by the King of Rynmere.

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• Closed • [Venora] Breaking The Habit

Postby Darcyanna Venora » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:03 am

21st Zi’da, 717, First break after midnight

It was late, some break after midnight, in the time before the sun even made its faint oncoming presence known. Darcy barely noticed, had barely left her bed since the early morning events between herself and the two men who had held their confronting intervention. The young blonde had cried, fates she’d sobbed until her voice was hoarse and her eyes were dry. Neither Oliver nor Caius had come to see her, and the Venora had offered the same in return. She felt exposed, betrayed, hurt—even though it had all been from a place of care.

Curtains drawn the heart weary woman had turned away the servants at the door with offers of food and drink with nothing but silence, even Jirelle’s quiet plea with her sweet pastry’s hadn’t drawn the pale broken creature out. She couldn’t eat, she couldn’t sleep. Not only was she shattered by the exhausting emotional implosion, but she was afraid. Seven, she was petrified. Eyes and ears everywhere, and Pythera’s handiwork so carefully safety tucked away was laid bare in the morning sun like so much spilt wine.

Darcyanna knew it was only a matter of time now. Only a matter of time before the youngest Venora found out, and then well...death seemed an almost welcome release from the fear that had nipped her heels for so long. And of course, amongst the tears and the pain, there was a new sensation. One that Darcy wanted desperately to end.

Withdrawal.

Post the fight, the pianist had taken her black bag and tossed the last of the contents in the fireplace, burning them with an impulsive need to show Caius and Oliver that she could try. That she could cope. But fates save her, she was not coping. She felt sick, cold and sweating all at the same time. More than once she’d dry wretched into the small wash basin on her coffee table, bringing up nothing but stomach aching from the force. Weeping, body trembling violently and head throbbing, Darcyanna sat in front her white piano wrapped in her blanket.

“I can’t do this, I can’t do this at all.”

Placing a hand on the keys, stroking them with shaking fingers, the young woman pressed a few notes. It felt good, and with a sob she pressed a few more. Pushing the blanket aside, dressed in a long magenta fluffy dressing gown and black shift, the pianist placed her second hand and played a haunting tune.

Such a perfectly beautiful rendition of this song


She played, eyes closed, uncaring of who she woke at the ridiculous hour or what they thought. She played, forcing herself to focus on the sweet high notes of her song. The timing was unpredictable, shifting from a slow tempo to a fast one and back again, falling through trills like water trickling across stones in a river. Midway through she pushed into strong steps, like climbing a staircase to the skies with aching legs, reaching for hope at the peak. It slowed as though to end the song, when with a renewed vigour Darcyanna danced up the scale and put her all into the keys, her very emotions laid out in the melody.

Trilling through the high end of the piano, the blonde haired Venora felt her way through the last few sweetly pitched keys, lingering, complimenting her aching heart, until finally it was done.

Sitting back, wrapping her arms around herself, Lady Darcyanna Venora hung her head and wept.
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[Venora] Breaking The Habit

Postby Oliver Venora » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:23 pm

"I don't know what's worth fighting for..."

In the darkness of the doorway, Darcyanna had not noticed him open the door, nor had she heard the gentle creak as it swung. Standing there, Oliver listened as the played the song, leaning against the doorjamb. Haggard and sleepless, he'd tossed and turned for breaks before coming to his decision, rolling from the soft warmth of his bed to re-dress quickly. Fitted gray pants met an untucked white button up shirt, the top few buttons left open to allow the small modicum of chest hair to poke through. Leaning there, the music floating around him, Oliver's resolution wavered. Staring at the tormented girl's back as she played, rigid as a board, Oliver saw the young girl he'd grown up protecting, loving, guiding... Failing.

Clutched in his left hand, a small glass jar, sealed and labeled with nothing more than a black triangle, was manipulated back and forth. He rolled the smooth glass in his hand, contemplating the safety or intelligence of his decision, but he knew he could not turn back. Four arcs, she'd hidden a secret that may be fatal, and certainly was detrimental, from him. Oliver could not deal with that again, could not allow the dark secret to crack their relationship, grown fragile from distance and growth. No, he needed to reach out to her, to let her know that he did not mean the words he said the previous trial.

As the song drew to an end, though, Oliver remained silent, a spectre hidden in the shadow of the doorway as her small head dipped, and her body shuddered with sobs. His heart leapt into his throat, and he nearly choked for air behind her. The pounding in his chest grew to a roar, filling his senses with the discomfort of nausea and terror. He couldn't do it, he could not confront her. There was too much pain, too many secrets... Too much to fix. She was shattered, and he could do nothing, and that made him feel... Helpless. Helpless and weak and useless, like he'd failed to be the brother she deserved. Still having heard nothing from Charlotte, Thera was still in the wind, and he was no closer to bringing his sister to justice than he was to figuring out a solution to Darcy's internal struggles.

There in the freezing air of the midnight in Zi'da, Oliver's choices splayed before him, dissected like a frog to their basest constituents. He could turn, silently leave and act as if he'd never seen her that evening. Or he could stride into that room, embrace his sister, and assure her that her world was not crashing down around her. Every season sees a storm, but Oliver and Caius would help her weather this one, and they would rail against the coming one as a team. They were family, and they would overcome this schism as a family. He could tell her that, he could... Or he could leave and retreat the darkness of ignorance that he'd lived in for arcs.

Not that there was truly a choice in that. He knew he could not leave Darcyanna in misery, though he had for so long unintentionally. Staring at his crying sister's defeated form, Oliver's only choice was to be there for her, to be the armour he'd always wanted to be for her. His words had caused her hurt, and he needed to make that right. He had to, and once he did that, they could find a way forward. But she hadn't admitted it to him, not truly. He wanted to know everything, to see her as she did so that he could reflect what he saw in her, to show her the skewed visage she had of herself. Gripping the jar again, tighter than before, he glided into the room, quickly and quietly approaching her.

As he did so, he slid onto the bench beside her, likely surprising her. Still, though, he offered a strong arm to her, wrapping her in it and pulling her closer to him, to the warmth of his body and the protectiveness of his arms. He anticipated a struggle, and would fight against her if she tried to recoil. He said nothing, simply holding her close to him with his right arm, his left hidden from her. He just shushed her, willing the Fates to grant her serenity in those bits. He would be there for her, he would.

This time.
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[Venora] Breaking The Habit

Postby Darcyanna Venora » Sat Jan 06, 2018 7:46 am

21st Zi’da, 717

Holding herself in the dimly lit room, weeping with unrestrained heartache, Darcyanna didn’t hear the creak of the door, nor did she hear the quick footsteps across her floorboards. The figure that sat down beside her gave the young pianist a start, and she looked up sharply.

Quite suddenly the waif of a woman raised her small hands to push him away with a sob, angry and hurt, the words of their fight before echoing harshly in her head.

I want you to tell me, right now, who you really are. If you can't lay that on me, you can turn around never set foot in my home again.

“Leave me alone, just leave me alone.” She hissed between hitched breaths, barely able to speak for the painful shuddering jerks in her chest. The dark haired Venora, so opposite and yet so alike, was a stone against her useless hands that balled into fists to pummel pathetically against his chest. Onyx Rose, to the core.

Eventually though, her movements became weaker and with a broken whimper, the Ivory Rose let her hands drop and leaned into the comfort of his embrace. Closing her eyes, Darcy choked out her anguish and her pain, shivering with the withdrawals. His soft sounds soothed her cries, until they faded into mere hiccups every so often.

“I’m so sorry Oli. I’m so so sorry.” She whispered, still unable to bring herself to bare all the dirty gritty details of Pythera’s torture. Under magenta robes and black slip her scars bore her story, unseen yet by the man. Unwilling for him to see. She knew it would hurt him, the truth in it’s rawest and most revealing form.

Sitting back, she wiped her eyes with the corner of her robe and took a deep shuddering breath.

“If you were...if you were coming to check on me, I’ve burnt it all. All of it.” It was said in a slightly defensive tone, as though she was waiting to be judged again. Waiting for him to yell again.

“I shouldn’t have been playing at this time of night I just...it helps. My songs. They help. With the cravings.” It wasn’t an apology for the piano, but merely an acknowledgement of the fact the instrument was not really a ‘dead of night’ sort of thing. Looking up into his face, her eyes grey with the sorrow in her heart, Darcy asked a question that she wasn’t really sure she wanted an answer to.

“I...I’m...am I still welcome here, in your home?”
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[Venora] Breaking The Habit

Postby Oliver Venora » Sat Jan 13, 2018 2:43 am

"Or why I have to scream..."

Darcyanna was not a strong girl, not in a physical sense. Oliver couldn't fathom the strength of her character, paralyzed in his revelations of her misery. But he felt her physical strength, each small, frail hand pounding into his chest one after the other. And despite her lack of power, the blows echoed through Oliver, cracking him like a rock on the top layer of ice over a lake; each crack threatened to plunge Oliver into the frigid depths of his guilt.

But he held his composure, allowing the slight blonde to rain blow after blow onto his heart, the flesh rebounding, but the soul bowing under the pressure. He stared at her, tears rimming his eyes, a swimming mixture of dust-brown and pale blue. He just sat there, sentinel, as she smashed against the aegis of his willpower, chipping it with each shot. And then, as quickly as it started but forever after, she stopped, falling into him in defeat and capitulation. Oliver's arms clasped immediately around her, the warmth of his arms arcing back and forth across her back. He sighed slightly, relieved that she had finally found his chest with her face, not her hands, and laid her chin on her head, smelling the vague floral scent of her hair. He tried to speak, but his breath caught in his throat, bile swirling below the surface as he swallowed the urge to vomit.

Instead, he kissed the crown of her head, murmuring nothings she apologised. He could never truly be mad at her, could never allow her to hurt because of him. His inaction was enough, he would not add conscious thought in addition. Still grasping his arms with his hands, he pulled her closer into him, close to suffocating her in shame. When he released her, he held her out to arm's length, his eyes lighter than usual, but not altogether unblackened. His hands on her shoulders, he squeezed, the tears finally falling.

"Never apologise to me, Darcy. Never." He took a deep breath, holding back the sobs growing in him. He needed to be strong for her, to show her that she could lay her troubles at his feet, and that he could handle it when she did so. He steadied himself, still holding her shoulders so that she faced him, his eyes connecting with hers. The look on his face was serious, moreso than Darcy had ever seen on his face. "I should be apologising. Your whole life, I've been so... So arrogant in believing that I was protecting you. I thought I knew everything about this world, and the dangers it held. I thought that if you came home with no bruises on your body, you'd not come home with lacerations on your heart. But... But I couldn't protect you, and I will live with that knowledge every trial... Every trial until I put Pythera in the ground, with nothing more than dying grass in the shape of a puddle of urine to mark her miserable existence. Well, nothing more than the grass and the piece of herself she's left with each of us."

He stared at Darcy, his gaze soft, but his jaw set. He finally released her shoulders, slumping his own. He sighed again, this time in defeat himself, before looking back at her, the pleading purple of his eyes begging for forgiveness, even though his words were not, not explicitly.

"You, Caius, myself, Charlotte... Pythera has torn her everlasting being and placed a piece in each of us, a spectre that will forever haunt us in our own ways. I cannot speak for Caius, but I see the look in his eyes when he catches your visage, and not your attention. I see his mixed adoration and fear, and I think I understand the fear now. How can he reconcile falling in love with a woman who could find death at any trill? How could he go to work or to the market for tomatoes when he could return to find our corpse cooling on the floor, a vial of Saints-know-what next to you? And how could he blame you, truly?"

It was clear Oliver was no longer talking about Caius. The whole thing, it had been about him. How could he trust that Darcy would be safe in Andaris? How quickly would he find out if she were found dead? Would Caius tell him? Or like Oliver himself, would Caius blame Oliver for being unable to keep the pretty blonde safe? Oliver did not want to risk it, but he knew he couldn't control her. He just had to trust that Caius would be enough to keep her sane, and safe. It killed him, but it was the proper path.

"This is no more my home than yours, ever, Darcy. As long as you live, you'll find asylum here. Until my death, you will always have a bastion to recover from whatever ails you, whether it's chemical, mental or emotional. I will always be here for you. I just need you to tell me, to trust me enough to carry that burden with you. Because you may not see it, but it's our burden."

Oliver reached down to the bench in between his legs, lifting the small bottle into view. He showed it to her, his eyes shining and liquefying into a pale purple, the paleness of uncertainty.

"I want to know, all of it, without bias or fear. This... This will allow us the kind of honesty we need. Darcy... No more secrets. Our house is falling apart... Let's not follow suit." It was a plea. One from a broken man to the reason for his existence for much of his life.
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[Venora] Breaking The Habit

Postby Darcyanna Venora » Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:55 pm

21st Zi’da, 717

The young Venora felt safety in his arms, a place once welcoming to her as a child, now as an adult. How she’d missed him, the tall dark man who had raised her even moreso than their mother and father. The arcs had been unkind, and every trial she had wanted—needed her brother—and fear had held her back. Shame had tied the leash.

Looking up at his dusty blue eyes, Darcy felt her heart sink at the look on his face. He suffered, he suffered because of her, and the knowledge was a knife in her chest. But then, the man changed. He was serious, resolute, holding her by the shoulders and speaking with open honesty. Oliver spoke of Pythera, and he blood ran cold. It was wrong, so wrong, but the idea of the youngest sisters death made her heart race. Even after the torture, even though she hated her...

“Oli, she’s still our sister...” She whispered, watching as the man dropped, defeat in the violets of his eyes. Fates, how the look sat so starkly against her memories of Oliver. This was not Oli, this broken and hurting soul. This was Pythera’s stain, her mark on their family.

She’s not our sister. She’s insane.

Oliver spoke on, and the slight pianist couldn’t help but look away with a touch of shame on her cheeks. It was true, all of it, and her guilt ate her up inside. Caius had suffered her, in ways no one else had yet needed to. He perhaps, had suffered enough. Too much.

Seven would he ever speak to her again?

But then, the oldest Venora was speaking of not just Caius anymore. It was clear, he was talking about himself. She couldn’t bring herself to speak, simply pressing her lips together with a small nod. Lifting her eyes, the blonde followed his hand, glancing down at the vial with a small frown before meeting his pale purple gaze.

“Oli...I...what is it?” Darcy asked softly, reaching to take the bottle and look it over slowly, before handing it back. She trusted her brother, impeccably and without hesitation, and so with a deep breath the long suffering musician nodded.

“No more secrets. For us. For Venora.” Smiling a little, Darcy nodded. She would wait for Oliver to measure out the correct dosage of the liquid into the lid, accepting it in her fingers with a nervous sort of look. Her last experience with a liquid drug had nearly killed her. However, this was Oliver, and she would walk through fire if he said it would not hurt.

Taking drugs with her brother, not an experience The Ivory Rose ever expected to have.

“For the Rose.” She said, holding it up like making a toast and shooting it quickly with a wince and a sound of disgust. The purple drug was bitter and thick, tingling on the way down.

As she waited for the taller brunette to join her, Darcy closed her eyes. She could already begin to feel a fuzziness at the edges of her consciousness, as though alcohol was sweeping into her system.
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