× The Kingdom of Asteria takes up the largest of the sky lands in the eastern part of Chalcedonia. The oldest kingdom of the Sixth Era, its land was once the Kingdom of Triskel in the Second Area and comprises of the Auster Lands, the Chalcedon, and the Chalcedonian Jungle. Asteria is the most powerful of the three kingdoms though lately it relys more and more on trade for metals. It is also the most diverse of the kindgoms.

The capital of Asteria is Aureas, a city of the Second Era completely rebuilt and restored by Taal Zodo as his gift to his nephew Ian Mercleis. The current king, and only king in its long history, is none other than Ian Mercleis. Asteria has been regarded as the Holy Kingdom due to its king's close relationship to the divine Taal Zodo.

The path before her...(King)

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3 months 3 weeks ago #53 by AnnaNadir
Anna smiled and mouthed a silent 'Thank you' to the woman before she departed. Taking Ian's arm, she smiled and followed him, the Royal Guard making room at the front of their small group for Galen. Anna pretended not to notice, as she listened while Ian spoke of her female guard. "Yes, they are still called Shards. It was the one thing that's been drilled into the mind every Royal, beginning at their birth. They are the wedge between us and treachery. Our weapons of defense, as well. And at least for as long as I've known, the safe sounding boards for anyone of the crown lineage when we have need." A soft smile brought a blush to her cheeks. "And yes, the closeness is a handy thing. Galen is obvious as my guard, but Tana is often seem as a handmaiden or one of my Ladies. I prefer her role as that. It allows protection for me and the Ladies I'm with, when the regular guard would be inappropriate."As he spoke of history, she nodded in agreement. She, too, knew the past held keys to the future. In her case, perhaps more personally than others. The library took her breath away. Even at home, the knowledge they had preserved hasn't been this great. "Sire!" She gasped as he released her to fetch something. "This is incredible. We have many tomes and scrolls we retained, but can't replicate. This is incredible. May I, perhaps, send a couple scholars to learn how you preserved and saved so many?" The idea that even one in fifty of the things they had at home could be saved, made her light headed.As Ian started reciting, she turned to him, her brow furrowed slightly. "Dark Paralysis... It rings a bell of familiarity. But it's as if my mind says it's just what I've called it...Tann's sleep, I mean. I didn't realize it was an actual thing." She moved towards him, once more aware of Galen's presence just out of reach. The King's guard were at the door, but her own had followed closer. She knew it wasn't just for her physical safety. Sometimes talking about Tann brought out emotions she couldn't control. Galen had 'saved' her from crying herself sick in sadness, from tearing rooms apart in rage, and from passing out trying to force a vision when it wasn't ready to be seen. She's always been alone at those times. But with the King nearby, she realized he was protecting them both, this time.

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3 months 3 weeks ago #61 by mythus
Replied by mythus on topic The path before her...(King)
Ian smiles, "But of course Anna, your scholars would be most welcomed here. Asteria is a kingdom that believes in sharing knowledge with her friends, and any knowledge that we can share - whether it be to illuminate hidden mysteries or prevent reoccurring atrocities, we will share gladly." Ian chuckles, "But truthfully, two of the greatest tools we have with preservation and restoring old tomes, is Temporamancy, and time. We have a staff of xodian temporamancers, including myself, and being xodian means we don't need to sleep and being temporamancers means we can take a glimpse into the past to see what was once there that might have been erased by time." The king rubs his chin, "I will of course be glad to send a couple back with you if you desire, chroniclers that is."

Ian leans against a table, "Dark Paralysis is a terrible condition indeed. Said to be the result of dark magic once attributed to Zodo, it places the afflicted into a dark sleep filled with terrible nightmares that one cannot awaken from. It is sometimes called Taal's curse do to him being the first recorded person to have ever been afflicted by the Dark Paralysis." He chuckles, "though at the time they thought he was dead and entombed him. I can only imagine the surprise when he emerged from his tomb a whole era later!"

Ian rests the book on the table next to him, "I was born in the era before this, the broken Fifth Era where magic was feared, the world was in a steady decline, and terrible magic storms roamed the countryside. In that time, few still knew of the Dark Paralysis, despite it still afflicting people. Tannhauser was perhaps the most notable one, though word often didn't travel between lands in that time." He sighs, "or at least, word rarely reached Chalcedonia. If I remember right, it is said he was put in a room to be monitored somewhere within the elven castle, but then civil war erupted among your kin..."

"There is one thing I don't quite understand though, Princess Anna," Ian sighs as he stands and paces, as if he's trying to work it out even now. "We now know the true cause of the Dark Paralysis. It was of course the Will of Zodo, which was a twisted aspect of Zodo long darkened by his own greed and pride. When he was defeated at the end of the era, it was recorded that many recovered from their sleep."  Ian stops and turns to Anna, "So, the question is then, where is Tannhauser. Does he still slumber? Or is he awake, trapped in some long forgotten tomb?"

Characters: Ian Mercleis Poppy

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3 months 2 weeks ago - 3 months 2 weeks ago #62 by AnnaNadir
“Temporamancy,” Anna laughed. “I hadn't even considered that. Though, probably because I don't know any with such skills. I would love to have some of your Chroniclers in my libraries. Though if you wish, I could always have the tomes and scrolls brought here if it's better. I don't wish to rob you of your staff for my own curiosity's sake.” She smiled and shook her head. Some of the things she had were rumored to be writings from her many times great-grandfather Tannhauser, and his wife, Lie'Ania about the times before his sleep and just following it. She hoped it would give her a clue to his resting place now. “It makes sense.” She said as he described what the Paralysis was. As he mentioned them being aware while sleeping, then waking up, she almost feinted.

Dropping into one of the beautiful cushioned chairs around a table strewn with tomes and scrolls, she
tried to catch her breath. “Buried alive... I never considered... I mean, he could be awake, and trapped?” She suddenly wasn't sure she would be able to eat lunch, much less dinner.

When Ian asked about the visions, she looked back up at him. The color was seeping back into her porcelain face but she was still a bit shaken. “I don't know. I swear!” The statement was blurted out as if she was being accused of hiding him. “I'm sorry, Sire... forgive me.” Her hand rose as she saw Galen take a step towards her. “I'm ok, Gale...” she gave her guard a slight smile and he stepped back once more.

“Majesty, I am sorry. I honestly don't know. He comes to me in my dreams. I can be dreaming of lunch
in my gardens, or riding in the woods. And suddenly he would step from the shadows. Every time he did, it was the same thing. He would reach out a hand to me and say,” she took a deep breath, “he
would say
'I am here... I am here...'. Then he would drop his hand and step back into the shadows.” She was at as much of a loss now as she was when it happened. “The dreams never changed. There was never a clue to where he was.” She suddenly felt more helpless than ever before.

What was she doing? Who did she think she was that in all these generations, no one else had ever found him. Why was she so special to think she was the one who could do it? She glanced up at Galen and the look on her face was one of hopelessness and defeat. She glanced back at Ian. “I'm sorry. I don't know what to do. How am I supposed to find him if no one else in all this time hasn't?” She wondered, now, if this was the moment her father hoped she would reach. A moment when she had enough doubt, that she would give up her quest and come home to rule like all the
Na'Dir rulers before her.
Last edit: 3 months 2 weeks ago by AnnaNadir.

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3 months 1 week ago #77 by mythus
Replied by mythus on topic The path before her...(King)
When the elven princess started blurting out that she didn't know, Ian was confused. But that confusion was soon replaced with a look of sudden revelation. Taking a seat across from Ania he acknowledges her statements, "So, you receive visions of Tannhauser?

Smiling thinly Ian tries to reassure his guest, "My questions, they were not questions I had expected you to have answers to. In fact, I had suspected that you had similar questions. While it was rumored that you were talking to the ancient elven king, I am one who pays no heed to rumors." Ian sighs, 
"But, this is good! Finally, after years of silence, he is trying to reach out. And he has chosen you." He smiles warmly, "It would appear that I am right to choose you and your kingdom, out of those of your family, to support."

Seeing the doubt and worry rise in his guest, Ian leans forward and tries to reassure her, "Hey now, what is this all about? All of this self doubt, such is not befitting of a Na'Dir." He smiles, "Besides, how could anyone before have found Tannhauser, if you are the first he ever reached out to? Nay, I say it is your destiny to find him, and if I may I'd love to help you do so."

Ian sits back, a smile still present on his ageless face, "In fact, I so happen to know the one person who would possibly know where to find him. We.... could go speak to him, if you wish."

Characters: Ian Mercleis Poppy

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1 month 3 weeks ago #115 by AnnaNadir
Anna waved Galen back. The look on his face was one she knew well. Had the King not been present, they'd be arguing over whether she should go lay down or not.
The King's reassurance bolstered the princess just enough to allow her to catch a breath and relax. Galen paused in his forward motion but he did not retreat further. His micro nods the other guards let them know he would not advance towards their King.
Anna listened and shook her head. "You are right. I don't know of anyone else he's reached out to. In dreams or anything else." She has been about to forgive him when the man's final words made even Galen nearly freeze.
But it was Anna who found her voice first. "Someone who knows... Who!? Why haven't they come forward sooner?" She moved her glance from Ian to Galen and back. Someone who knew how to find Tann! How could luck smile on her like this. "Yes, please, Sire. Please take me to them." She could barely stand between the weakness of the revelation and the excitement of the possibility.

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1 month 3 weeks ago #133 by mythus
Replied by mythus on topic The path before her...(King)
Ian sighs deeply, "Ah, why hasn't he come forward... I honestly couldn't say." His gaze lowers, "Perhaps it is the.... complicated history he had with Tannhauser and his wife.  Perhaps it is the guilt he still feels towards them and the world entire."

The king's eyes lift back up and a thin smile plays across his ageless face, "Or perhaps it simply never occurred to him to do so. After  all, 'Where is Tannhauser' has likely never been a question a question asked of him. My uncle may be many things, but while it is possible for him to do so, he stays away from reading the minds and desires of others."

Ian chuckles, "Yes, my uncle of course is of whom I speak, though many would call him god, and perhaps some with ancient memories long unforgiving would call him villain. I speak of Taal Zodo, of course, the light bearer secluded within his floating palace ever trying to find forgiveness and ever trapped by his heavy heart. The one responsible for our newly balanced utopia, but also responsible for 850 years of darkness many many years ago."

Ian stands slowly to his feet, "Being his nephew, I am perhaps one of the few who have the means to reach him. I could take you to him Anna," Ian smiles warmly. "I am sure he would love to see the descendant one whom he once called friend and would likely be more than happy to help make things right." Ian extends his left hand, "So, do you still wish to speak with him? If so, I am more than happy to take you to him."

Characters: Ian Mercleis Poppy

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1 month 3 weeks ago #135 by AnnaNadir
Anna listened. It made sense. If no one had asked this person 'Where is Tannhauser?' it probably never occured to him to say what he knew. 

The Princess was excited that not only was the King knowledable of such a person, but it was his 'uncle'! It thrilled her to the bones and her face lit up as if Tannhauser, himself, had walked into the room.

Then that Uncle was named... Taal Zodo...

Anna's visage dropped so abruptly and her hand went to her chest. She started shaking her head and something deep inside made her nauseous. "Ta...Taal Zodo... is..." she couldn't even get the words out as her heart started racing and her breath shallowed. 

Galen gave up decorum and came to his Lady's side. Kneeling beside her, he took her hands and squeezed till she looked at him. "Anna... it's not the Taal of your journals and tomes. That isn't him anymore. He split... changed... is redeemed in the eyes of most." 

Her nod was swift and made her vision swim. "I know... but ... Lie'Ania... he..." she was slowly starting to calm down but there was a glisten to her eyes like unshed tears barely being held at bay. "I don't know if I can, Galen..." The helplessness in her voice, something he was familiar with when she awoke from nightmares, would most certainly startle the King and his guards. She was the leader to be of a major bloodline House. Heir to a Kingdom that was as integral to their history as they man she was speaking of.

"It's for Tann and Nia that you must, Princess." He used the title on purpose. It was a low trick, and they both knew it. He used it to remind her that duty, no matter how unpalatable, had to come first. as he reached up to use a thumb to wipe away the edge of a loosed tear. 

She nodded and took a deep breath. Her smile slowly peaked out for him alone. Then she looked to the King and nodded. "I will see him... if he will see me..." The idea still terrified her. But with the King's calmness about the situation, and Galen at her back, she would go to whatever lengths were necessary for her great great grandfather's sake.

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1 month 3 weeks ago #136 by mythus
Replied by mythus on topic The path before her...(King)
Ian watched silently as Anna reacted to the name Taal Zodo and how her guard raced to her rescue. Somewhere deep down Ian felt a twinge of jealousy that even he could not hope to explain, but his intrigue pushed such dark thoughts aside. The xodian king had half expected a reaction like this from the elven princess. While the modern world owed itself to Taal Zodo and many now regarded him as a force of good, Ian was not a man of the modern world. He was a man of the era before, an era falling apart filled with the fear of Zodo. Ian knew perhaps better than most the darkness, the fear, and the source of it all. He was there that day when the terrible Will of Zodo was beaten into submission and restored by the final sacrifice of Kymara. He saw the change yes, but also knew of the immense evil that was there before. And he had felt that Anna would have been connected enough to LieAnia and Tannhauser to have some knowledge of that darkness as well. Still, Ian knew that Taal Zodo was the answer, if only the princess would be brave enough to seek it.

When she finally agreed to speak with Taal though, Ian was both surprised and deeply impressed. Smiling softly, he nods, "There is the Na'Dir courage I've read about. Splendid." He smiles warmly, "Then, if the two of you would follow me."

The king makes his way from the library and back to the courtyard gardens. This time he crosses to another building, one seemingly disconnected from the others of the castle bearing a golden flame upon its oak great doors. Unlike the other buildings here, no guards stood present, and indeed none would follow their king within. It would seem that this is the one place that Ian could go and not be shadowed, and perhaps that was for good reason. After all, what good are guards against a god?

Ian pushes the doors open to reveal a great alter with a glowing emblem in its middle. Ian points forward, "There, my esteemed guest, is the way forward. It is a doorway, so to speak, that takes us to his castle." He smiles, "Worry not, we shall go together."

Characters: Ian Mercleis Poppy

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