And we claim that this collection has a name and is a being

POSTED: Fri Apr 29, 2016 12:14 pm

300+ Salsola's forests are home to many ghosts, ancient and new, named and unnamed -- and the red star has "woken" even the weakest ones with its energy. Loki spoke to some of the ghosts and has organized a group ritual to ensure that they feel welcome -- juuust in case they were a cause, rather than an effect, of the chaos. Studies show that content ghosts haunt and possess less! :D Loki would have told several people of this ritual/ceremony and asked them to bring offerings and pass on the news to others.

All welcome, no post order. Anyone is welcome to participate in as many or few posts as you want, and feel free to make things up or have your character bump into one of the spectres! For those not spiritually sensitive, Loki has provided 'shrooms so folks can at least trip out lol.

ATTN witches: Participation in this thread, provided the required word count is reached, counts toward one of the Witch Job challenges! Either way, this is a great way to get to know more of the spooooky coven. ;D

See galleries for credit.

There was a time for gods and fearful prayers, and there was a time to merely listen to the souls—alive and dead.

Night fell merely an hour ago, and mist rolled in from the coastal bluffs and turned the forest hazy with fog. In the midst of this, under a waning moon, Loki was aglow with silver—spectral himself, bare-furred and cloaked in the scent of sweet incense.

He smiled at those who trickled into the hollow, drifting among the trees like the fog. It was his characteristic smile, warm even in the face of those he did not know well, and he greeted each Luperci by name and indicated the bowl held in his arms. It held mushrooms for those who entered to pluck and devour if they wanted to eat of real magic; he explained this gently to those who would listen, and glanced at the moon as it rose.

We share this forest, Loki began, and swept an arm out toward leaves that stirred—even after the wind that swirled the fog around them began to die away. The edges of the grove became colder, and those sensitive to it would hear the beginnings of whispers. They were wordless sounds, weak, a hundred tongues of creatures who could not quite form, canine and others alike. They sensed the heat of the gathered ones, and sought it jealously.

The veil between the spiritual realm and our earthly realm is thin in Salsola. Many among you may be my sisters in the Coven, and know the truth of this. Some of us have seen things and had dreams that we cannot explain and have an inkling.

He thought of his daughter, who walked the paths of the dream world with feet that traversed real ground, and of the Serf who saw his dead father in his sleep. Others must have experiences like that, too—others magic-touched, ghost-touched.

When the red star fell, it woke the spirits here. There have always been ghosts in the twilight of our worlds, just as there have always been gods, but their strength has grown. No one can deny that we are not alone in these woods.

He paused and glanced at Pierrat, who stepped from the midst of the other wolves, his thick fur fluffed against the unnatural chill. One of his flower necklaces was twisted in his hands, and he approached the hörgr, the stone altar, that Loki had prepared. The doggish man knelt and lay the flowers there, his head bowed with respect.

Spirits, murmured Loki, his voice held in the fog, we bring offerings of good will to you. We acknowledge your presence in our home and ask you to stay in peace.

He lifted his own fist, fingers unfurled, to drop a driftwood carving on the altar.

A translucent shape flickered beside him, and cold fingers ran through his braids.

Last edited by Loki Helsi on Thu May 05, 2016 10:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
With your feathers and thorns sticking to my hide
Salsola
DEAD
User avatar
Raze
Luperci raven & dove
trickster god
two-spirit

POSTED: Fri Apr 29, 2016 12:57 pm

The fur was growing back.

She had known this early on, for the sensation was prickly and apparent. What had happened to her was proof that Salsola had chosen its master healer well, and that the woman her uncle had married was an exceptional example of her field. The fur was still very short and very thin, but this was hardly the most apparent thing about the area.

Where the fire had spread the color had been taken. Even the green of that eye was gone, replaced with a murky brown. Her vision hadn't been lost, but she knew it had changed. Things were sometimes too bright or blurred around the edges. Despite this, Blair thought they were exceptionally lucky. She did not mind having a scarred, changed face.

Every decision had a price to be paid.

Since freed from her healing period, Blair was quick (and perhaps too eager) to push Reykja into their accompanying Loki in his quest to ease the spirits of the old forest. Reykja did not seem to mind this. Her faith had not left her, even after the fire, and she still spoke her prayers and sang her songs when the two of them were alone.

Blair was counting and measuring the time from when the “magic” had been eaten and when she began to feel its effects. Wisely, Reykja had refused this – but she was humming under the words of the Bard and running her hands over and over the leather cord they were holding.

A stone of particular smoothness and circular quality passed from Blair's hands, and she flashed a curious (and almost haughty) smile to the Bard. Reykja placed her braided cord around the river rock, never breaking from the repetitive tune she was still humming.

Salsola
The Governor (NPC)
User avatar
Mel
Luperci

POSTED: Fri Apr 29, 2016 1:25 pm

Word Count → 446 :: ---

She was a bundle of nervous, uneasy tension that threatened to spill over. Excitement bled through her bones, teasing through even the faintest reactions drawn by the desire to both participate and witness the truth behind magic, ghosts and the dead. Untrained and, for a lack of a better term, inexperienced in the rites of being a witch or exploring magic, she had spent most of her time since coming here studying under Loki's tutelage, which had proven an invaluable asset to exploring that side of her she didn't often get to witness.

She'd filtered in, just like one of the others, though her initial response was to glance about, her eyes darting to find Loki and Pierrat who she knew would be here for Pierrat seemed to be near him just as much as she was.

Shivers cut over her arms, the light chill of the ritualistic area scattering over her as she reached out a hand to take a few of the tiny mushrooms offered for the event. She knew very little about them aside from the fact that Loki used them on a regular basis to connect himself to magic and to the world that magic could create. It only seemed fit that as one who aspired to be a witch and even Seer one day, Calla did her best to initiate the bonds that would tie her to that realm of immaculate power.

She settled into place, tossing the small bites into her mouth. The taste was horrid but she managed to get them down just in time for Loki and the ritual to start. Small, dainty hands rested at her arms, her eyes peeled upon the alter, the hörgr that was almost ethereal in nature to her as a student of both the gods and magic. She was not sure when the mushrooms began to take effect. Her hands felt charged, goosebumps clamoring over her flesh, making her fur stand on edge.

The world around her was suddenly brighter and darker at the same time, shadows moving off to the side that called to her attention for a fleeting moment before fading into the light. She stepped close, her fingers curled upon her own item of sacrifice. She did not own a lot that was important to her. What few items she had, she treasured for the most part. She remembered the fear that had taken over her the night of the falling star and for that reason, she stepped forward and let a band of hair tied with a short length of purple cord fall from her hands to settle upon the alter with the other offerings.


Salsola
Sanctus Apprentice (NPC)
User avatar
Dread
Luperci Witch

POSTED: Sun May 01, 2016 12:09 pm

+300

Since gaining knowledge on the natures of Khalifism, Weaver had been growing interested in the spiritual side of life. While he never intended to make this something to focus on in life, there was no harm in indulging in the practices when the moments for them came about. Loki's ritual was one of them. Word had gotten to him about the Bard's plans, something the tawny man was eager to hop on board with.

Since this was a special event, it was only proper for him to wear his nicest clothing. They were all gathering to pay their respects to the spirits that had also come to claim land in Salsola, but rather than drive them out, the Bard wished to bring them gifts so the two would be able to live alongside each other in peace. Weaver himself had not seen the effects of the spirits, or rather felt their presence, but he trusted the Bard. He had the Warden's support.

The hybrid stepped forth, green eyes moving to each of the other members that gathered here. He couldn't help but smile when he noticed Calla showed up. He loved his lighter sister, and it seemed she was starting to find her own place in Salsola's culture. It brought him joy to know this was the case. His eyes soon focused on the gray man himself as he began to address the spirits in the area, then resting his gift on the rock. One by one the other members stepped forward, placing their gifts with the others.

Now it was Weaver's turn. The tawny man stepped towards the rock, lute resting upon his back while he stretched his hands out, laying one of his nicer pelts. It wasn't the best gift, considering what little he had personally, but that was the point of the instrument he brought with him. If this was in honor of the spirits, then why not offer them a tune to join the rest of them in this ritual. Of course, he would do no such thing without Loki's permission. In the meantime, he bowed his head to the rock, stepping to the side to join his sister.

Weaver Valentine
Salsola
The Overseer (NPC)
User avatar
Salena
Luperci Signorino Mate to Syringa

POSTED: Sun May 01, 2016 1:42 pm

He says, "Oh, baby girl, you know we're gonna be legends
I'm the king and you're the queen and we will stumble through heaven

Saghani had left the tower that Loki had opened up to her until she was settled in her own residence. There was no complaints from the girl because she could not be anything but thankful for all of his help in the first place. She had probably the best sleep she had in ages having secure walls around her and not being on edge from every little sound that passed by and so, the girl made her way towards the forest in the morning in hopes of catching a rabbit.

When she returned there was no sign of Loki as darkness began to fall, and so she wandered out into the lands to find him. It was not long before she caught his scent and wound her way into the forest, remembering him mentioning something about being out there tonight to welcome the spirits that resided in Salsola. The woodsmoke dove had no idea what to think of this and with the rabbits ears clutched in her hand she made her way towards the forest. Fog crept in around her feet and made the darkness and forest surrounding her all the more ominous. The girl nearly jumped out of her skin when she felt something brush along the back of her neck, and attempting to control herself she picked up her pace finally seeing a small group gathering.

Loki was awash in a silver glow that added to the effect the forest was already having on her. She hung back slightly, watching as the other strangers trickled in. She only recognized Pierrat, having met him briefly the night she arrived as they would be sharing close quarters. Her eyes fell upon two women that seemed to have just arrived together, then noting another pair similar in colour enough that she could tell they may have been siblings. A friendly smile slipped over her face as she approached Loki and the altar. She held the rabbit out in offering, placing it by the other offers from those who gathered.

Saghani stepped back, her ears twitching at the sounds of whispering all around them. Her brows knit together in confusion as she wondered what was out in the forest. Could there truly be ghosts all around them? It sounded more like a spooky bedtime story to keep children from wandering out into the night. But, as she stood there awash in the moonlight she could not help but feel that there was more out there then she could ever imagine.

If there's a light at the end, it's just the sun in your eyes
I know you wanna go to heaven but you're human tonight"

ooc;; This is exciting! c:
Word Count: 418

avatar art by keprion@dA edited with permission.

The Family (NPC)
User avatar
Mads
Luperci

POSTED: Thu May 05, 2016 10:20 am

300+ Others are still welcome to join, whether it's for one post or a few -- no post order! Feel free to have random ghosties show up to individuals, too! ;3

See galleries for credit.

One by one, Luperci came forward.

Loki smiled and stood relaxed, a hand on his hip, but his lilac eyes were sharp and strange -- focused in a way they rarely, to others, seemed to be. He watched the proceedings, his silver hairs standing on end as the glen cooled, as as the mist seemed to take on a margaritaceous quality, awash with white-silver in what moonlight filtered through the trees. Flickers of pale light, foglike, seemed to form at the corners of vision -- seemed to take on shapes, a muzzle and ears here, a stretching arm there. He still smelled salt.

To see his niece was no shock, but to see Blair was -- if only for the marking on her face, making her seem spirit-touched herself. He mirrored her grin and raised his brows, choosing to believe that she was here for Reykja -- and knowing, to an extent, she was.

There were others, too, expected and unexpected. Calla ate of the magic heart, and Loki knew it would be more quickly potent than the night over the lavender tea, with her sister. From here he could not guide her, but he smiled -- and smiled at Weaver, too, who brought his lute. Wordlessly, Loki flickered his hands to get his attention and swept his hand toward Reykja, who continued to hum her song. To Saghani, he winked.

Pierrat offered the woodsmoke girl a friendly smile, too, but then he shut his eyes and sat back down in the grass, leaning back. The tricolor dog murmured something French under his breath and seemed to be ready to nap -- though Loki didn't kick at him for this. He knew the spirits walked most brazenly in the Serf's dreams.

He glanced at Calla, though invited Saghani to come stand with him and his other ward if she wanted to. Can you see them? he whispered, as something cold brushed his arm again.

With your feathers and thorns sticking to my hide
Salsola
DEAD
User avatar
Raze
Luperci raven & dove
trickster god
two-spirit

POSTED: Fri May 06, 2016 5:39 pm

ghost voice is a future cNPC only manifesting clearly in plague's head bc of the forest's energy~ if anyone would like to sit down with her and talk or whatever, feel free to do so since they wont appear in any future posts in this thread (+725)

Plague felt a presence among them from the moment she set foot in the gloomy hollow, cloaked in stainless white cloth. It was thick, like a sheet of snow, and she had a hard time coaxing her nerves into letting her press forward. She never was one for spirits on a personal level, but since she had begun her studies as an Acolyte it seemed they clung to her without hesitation. This was normal, she believed, for those who were truly devoted to the gods. To excel as a priestess as she had—to truly connect to her beloved—she bared both her body and soul to the forces she could not see. There were not many like her among the clergy. At least, not among those born to their lord of the night, Tak. The majority of them were cowards desperate for their greedy wishes to be granted in exchange for sacrifices.

She laughed at them, for even she, their lord’s bride, had not had her wishes granted. He did not give gifts and he did not give power, especially not to groveling fools who were concerned more with their worldly needs than His hunger.

Plague glanced at those who had gathered under the glow of the moon, eyeing them curiously as Loki began to speak. She knew only a few personally—the Bard himself and Weaver. The silver man had with him his slave, and her tawny acquaintance was joined by his sandy sister. She, along with the Queen’s striped daughter and the late crone’s grandchild, were there as well. Another girl stood close by but no name came to her and so she could only assume that she was a new Associate.

All of them laid their offerings down upon the altar, herself included. It was not without hesitation that she placed a wooden trinket, shaped into the form of a raven’s skull, down with the other gifts. Tak never asked for offerings like these, no, he demanded blood be shed. It was Rah’Khir and Ankh who asked for baubles, but even then, all sacrifices on the mountain were burned. Here, though, she saw no fires.

Nevertheless, the wraith bowed her head to her superiors in greeting. She muttered a thanks to Loki, who had told her of this gathering, before she slipped away towards the edge of the hollow. Plague doubted any of them believed in the gods of Khalif, and so she thought it best for her to worship alone for now. If any wished to join her, then so be it. The spirits were everywhere.

She sat upon the grass quietly, closing her eyes as she listened to the rustle of the leaves. Her hand reached below her pale cloak, the pads of her fingers brushing over the wooden can-tah that hung from her neck. The whispers grew louder now that she’d finally opened her ears to them, though whatever they meant to say was lost on her.

Murmuring the quiet words of a prayer, she pitied them.

A moment passed and the wraith felt cold hands upon her shoulder. Another voice, feminine in tone, whispered to her. It spoke, and though most of its words were unintelligible, she recognized a few as parts of the Khalif scriptures. This soul, at least, knew that she believed and that comforted her. Plague silently wondered if they were family.

"What makes you think even dead family would come to you?"

Her green eyes flew open, as wide and round as they could go. She lowered her eyelids, forcing herself to look calm as she glanced around. If it was someone here who’d said that to her, she could not tell. Nor could she tell if anyone else had heard the voice. She doubted they had.

"You know better than to think that," the new voice hissed, masculine and cruel and clear in her head. Without having to look Plague knew the spirit from before was gone. "I taught you better than that."

Wrath?

No, she thought, it’s not—It couldn’t be. He was dead.

The woman turned again, shaking her head as she closed her eyes, returning to her prayers. The dead from Khalif did not walk here. They didn’t, they never would.

She didn't hear the voice again.

Salsola
The Tradesman (NPC)
User avatar
Marcy
Luperci
BORN IN BLOOD

POSTED: Sat May 07, 2016 6:34 pm

Little by little, colors began to change – she was aware of this as she was aware of the presence of the other people around her, and neither perturbed the Arbiter. Blair had never been antisocial (like her brother) and was clever enough to see no point in acting aloof (like her sister) and had nothing, socially, to fear.

Family name and rank would give her power even if her own ferocity did not. Like a small creature unaware of its size, nature influenced this tenacity to blossom. In the times before the fall of the star, she had glimpsed hints of the truth. Magic was a part of the path to this place, though it seemed very likely that people who spent their lives tricking others into believing in invisible things might willingly blind themselves to deepen their own faith. What good was a rhetoric if contradiction rose to challenge it, and stood?

An old woman had died, and her passing had not ended things. Life went on.

She stopped thinking about these things and reached for Reykja's hand. It felt warm and very alive, and tingling beneath her palm. She began to rock slowly with the sound, and peered owlishly at Weaver and his instrument. Recalling their earlier meeting, she smiled – too wide, too full of teeth – at him.

Reykja's humming became a monotone noise, vague and quiet, but she nodded for Weaver to play.

Raven feathers decorated her hair, and she was in the black colors of mourning, but the twin to Blair's crystal pendent hung from her throat and shone even in the dark.

Salsola
The Governor (NPC)
User avatar
Mel
Luperci

POSTED: Mon May 09, 2016 8:25 pm

He says, "Oh, baby girl, you know we're gonna be legends
I'm the king and you're the queen and we will stumble through heaven

A strange chill crept up her spine like cool fingers making electrified trails up her back. Gooseflesh exploded over her body and she could not shake the unease that she had felt for a moment. Her eyes trailed to the silver bard and he seemed to be at ease in the presence of the pale cool mist that spread around the eerie forest. Her unease slowly slipped away knowing she was in Loki's presence made her feel that way lately. The man had been her saviour and she wanted to learn so much from him.

The nymph smiled back at Pierrat happy to always see another friendly face. She watched as his eyes closed and he sat back, unsure of what he was doing exactly, but knowing he must have also felt at ease with the spirits around them. Ears pricked at the soft sound of the bards voice breaking through her thoughts as her eyes stared owlishly around at what was going on. Taking in the new faces that seemed to appear from the shadow, offering what they had or nodding to Loki as they filtered in.

A flash of movement out of the corner of her eye made her head spin quickly and she peered into the darkness the mist flickering with an unusual movement just out of her reach. The girl swallowed hard, unable to explain the feeling that crept along her skin making her head swim with the larruping strangeness of it all. There had always been telltale signs of spirits in her vision, but she had always brushed it off as a trick of her own mind. Yet, as she thought more about it the girl remembered the dark forest back home, and the little flickers of flames her mother explained were will-o-wisps trying to steal the young girl away from her home.

"I keep seeing things at the edges of my vision that I don't know how to explain," she said, her brows pinching together in deep thought before turning to blink at the male confusion etched into her face. "Why did the red star fall from the sky?" she asked, her young age growing increasingly evident in her inexperience with matters such as this returning her to a child-like fervour of curiosity burning deep within her belly.

If there's a light at the end, it's just the sun in your eyes
I know you wanna go to heaven but you're human tonight"

ooc;; --
Word Count: 384

avatar art by keprion@dA edited with permission.

The Family (NPC)
User avatar
Mads
Luperci

POSTED: Tue May 10, 2016 9:54 pm

+300

Once Weaver made his way to his sister's side, his green eyes moved along with the rest of those who came forward, each of them offering their own gift to the spirits. While he had been up, his attention had been drawn over to Loki, the Bard pointing out Reykja's humming. A smile drew across his muzzle. She was making some music of her own. He would join along in due time, but for now, her music would be enough.

Once the gray male made his way over to speak to Calla and one of the newer members to the kingdom, the tawny man branched away, scooting closer to Plague. The darker woman seemed to be around all by herself. Given the last time he was with her, there was no harm in taking the time out of the ritual to see if she was doing alright. He soon moved to sit down at her side, removing the lute from his back, and resting it in his lap. A soft smile formed on his face as he turned to her, though it soon faded as he noticed her shaking her head. What was causing her to do so? Perhaps it was best not to pry, not at a time like this.

Weaver's gaze moved back up, noticing the toothy smile coming from Blair. She too pointed out Reykja's humming, which now seemed to be dying down. This was his chance to flare the ritual with some music of his own. The hybrid's fingers moved over the strings, letting a soft tone echo in the area. With the pluck of his fingers, it soon shifted to something much more mysterious, but also enchanting, hoping to please both the living and the dead that were present in the area.

Weaver Valentine
Salsola
The Overseer (NPC)
User avatar
Salena
Luperci Signorino Mate to Syringa

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