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 Post subject: Kizhul Dazor - A Gray One's Recollections
Unread postPosted: Tue May 01, 2018 5:59 pm 
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Thwap ! The rose cutting raked mercilessly at Kizhul's knuckles, leaving them bloody. His instructor, a graying Osriant towered above him, the noble sun-kissed features of his face twisted with disdain. "...That is the fifth time, now." Kizhul lowered his gaze down at the papyrus, observing the crimson blotches of his lifeblood that now stained it. Immediately, he felt the cold crook of the cleric's brass was-sceptre nudging his chin upwards. Now forced to look directly at his tormentor, Kizhul wanted to cry but he wouldn't; nay, couldn't give him that satisfaction.

"How do you expect to serve Osiris, when you can't even spell His name ?" His gray eyes came to rest at the wsjr pictoglyph, a faint shake of his head. With practiced ease, the priest drew the eye below the throne next to the kneeling man. A combination of characters that denoted Osiris' divinity. "You are Osriant. You hold the crook. You must be a shepherd of men." From beneath the makeshift canopy that served as their study, the priest, with a sweeping arc of his emaciated arm gestured outwards to Asanibis, the Great Vale where slaves toiled the wheat and barley farms under the sweltering noon sun. "They will look to you for guidance one day, when I go to join the holy dead under the shade of the mountains."

Kizhul nursed his wounded knuckle as he prepared for his sixth attempt, dipping his reed pen inside the pigment container. "I understand High Seeker. It shall not happen again." And indeed it did not, for the end result was something to make an artisan calligrapher envious. Seeing it, Atsu beamed a fatherly smile at the boy who couldn't have been older than eight summers. "Recess." He declared with a resonant clap of his leathery hands. "Fetch me the wine pitcher, if you will. And some of those honey cakes your mother makes. Those are delicious."

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 Post subject: Re: Kizhul Dazor - A Gray One's Recollections
Unread postPosted: Wed May 02, 2018 10:33 am 
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He placed the crook of his khopesh at the quivering man's neck. He laid there paralyzed like a sacrificial lamb during Higharvestide. His racing heartbeat could be felt through blade, haft and gauntlet; such was the finesse that had gone into the forging of his panoply. "You know what I've come here for." Finally came the cleric's voice, its youthfulness twisted into a spiteful rasp of iron by the gargoyle's face helmet crested atop his head. "I don't know what it is you speak of. Take what meager savings I have and leave my house, I beg of you." The wretch pleaded silently with damp eyes but it would soon become apparent that the faceless cataphract was callous to his plight. A ghost of a smile touched his lips, causing his emerald orbs to glow with mirth. "A liar to the grave. So be it."

The slash came swiftly, necrotizing tissue and painting the wall red with arterial spray. Kizhul was careful to make the cut superficial; just deep enough to sever the carotid whilst sparing the cords. "Speak." He enunciated the command word no sooner than the victim's last breath had escaped his lips. The slackened jaw tensed and closed in mockery of life, puppeteered by the priest's magic. "Where are your accomplices hiding ?" "West." Came the answer. "West, where ?" Kizhul made no attempt to conceal his frustration at the corpse's cryptic answer. He was instructed to be infinitely patient with the living and was thankful for the opportunity to dispense with that facade whenever he could. "Beyond the sands." Anauroch, Kizhul thought. That doesn't narrow it down in the slightest.

"Sundabar ?"

"Llorkh ?"

"Everlund ?"


Many more followed, the answer always a dull no. Until the dead man's mouth yawned agape once again and silence reigned in the small room. "Mortar for the wall. Fly swift to your judgement, thief."

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 Post subject: Re: Kizhul Dazor - A Gray One's Recollections
Unread postPosted: Fri May 04, 2018 2:13 pm 
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Atsu's patrician brow gleamed softly under the coruscating desert sun, beads of perspiration adorning it as gems upon a crown. He had taken his ceremonial headdress off, revealing a dome that was utterly devoid of hair. The threefold concentric circles that marked him as a priest of the Pantheon had long been scrubbed out from sweat and chafing; Kizhul heard his master reminding himself that they had to be repainted before reaching the eternal capital as he knelt by the oasis to slake his thirst. It had been a long day and neither he or his protege were in the mood for words. The latter was tending to the steeds, watering and feeding them. They were proud beasts, the kind of which laymen could only ever dream of acquiring after three lifetimes of back breaking labor. Bred by the clergy of Anhur for charioteering and warfare.

It is an osirisian adage that in the eyes of truth, a slave and the pharaoh are as one. It couldn't have been farther from the truth. Kizhul reminisced that day often when his venerable master was called upon to arbitrate a legal dispute in the Maerlar precinct. He and the High Seeker had never been close; Atsu, a thoroughbred conservative insisted on religiously observing the strict formalities between teacher and pupil. And while the rigor of his methods won him no love from Kizhul, the youth had always looked up to him as a paragon of wisdom and justice. The events that transpired during the trial shattered that childish delusion of mortal capability for evenhandedness permanently.

In lieu of a courtroom, the proceedings were being held in the precept's manor. The air in the great antechamber was stifling despite an overabundance of windows; the smell of human sweat mixed with burning incense was making Kizhul nauseous. Nevertheless, he stood perfectly still by Atsu's side as he delivered the verdict, holding the slate with his master's papyri and writing tools without protest; like a human lectern. "The evidence I have been presented with is, ahm... Inconclusive." The baying the crowd erupted in compounded by the overpowering scent nearly caused Kizhul to faint. Did he hear correctly ? Inconclusive ? The man that was brought before them was clearly guilty.

The words that followed dispelled all doubt from his mind. "Thank you for your service, Lord Magistrate Atsu. My office will take over from here. Case adjourned." The vizier, high priest of Horus-Re answered to no man but Akonhorus himself. And he enjoyed reminding everyone of that. Years later, Kizhul would find out that he had in no uncertain terms threatened Atsu's family with utter political annihilation were the Osriant to pass a sentence during the trial. Unsettled cases fell under the vizier's jurisdiction and the accused was clearly his crony. He would of course go on to be acquitted of all charges in the following weeks.

Atsu had decided to put his family's welfare before sacred ma'at and as such never again managed to command the same kind of respect from his student.

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