Monday, March 11, 2019

The Shalafae Archives - Storyteller

"Are you sure this is what you want to do?" Alrick asked, laying a hand on Morrigana's shoulder.

The hybrid looked up with a smile, basking in her father's attention. He'd changed his appearance with his name, but her heart would know him anywhere. "Of course I am."

He dropped his towering figure into a leather and bone chair. Blond haired, blue eyed, rugged and muscular, Alrick was heathen and wild, a fur-clad and scarred warrior. "Bards go through a lot of training to hone their talents."

Unlike her father, Morri felt no need to change her persona after he dissolved their last empire. Five thousand years old, and she felt unlikely to change. "I'm just doing it as a hobby. Not like I'll be going out and performing my stories."

Alrick smiled, eyes glittering. "So my little girl has taken my words to heart?"

"The loung are fun, but too easy. And it takes so long between litters. Breeding just isn't my thing." Morrigana leaned back in her chair, playing with the amber bard jewel. "I want creativity and instant gratification."

"And you'll do them for yourself?" Her father summoned a horn of ale and took a deep draught.

"For us, at first. No point embarrassing myself and ruining my reputation." The half-dragon chuckled, imagining her victims laughing before she killed them.

Lord Shalafae took another drink and gave his daughter a loving look. "I have faith in your skills."

She grew serious, frowning. Their bond was strong, sharing information on a subconscious level. "You believe I could actually be good at this."

One brow rose quizzically. "Why don't you?"

Morrigana paused to give consideration to her question. She'd always loved storytellers and the bards, finding joy in the magic they brought. Her life had no end of excitement, and thus no need for escapism. Yet a well-crafted tale was her guilty pleasure.

So with the empire building done again, the dread assassin had chosen storytelling as her hobby. Creative fun, whimsical, bard was far removed from empress.

"I never thought about this as a serious thing," Morrigana slowly replied. "Making up stories was just going to be a fun way to pass the time until the next war or empire or whatever."

Alrick smiled, toying with his ale horn. "And what if I never start one again?" She was shocked, and he continued as he stared. "I've passed plenty of ages without being a warlord. Some millenia call for research and quiet contemplation. Would you take your tales serious if this were one of them?"

Morrigana blinked, and slowly licked her lips. "You pose an interesting scenario." The hybrid fiddled with the bard gem, listening to the half-started story inside. Everything was hers to command when she applied her imagination. Fights turned out better, love grew quicker, respect was stronger. Nothing would be denied her.

And if she honed her talents, she could gain an audience. A following. Viewers would want more from her, would clamour to dwell in her bardic world.

"I do believe I could," Morrigana said. Her father took her hand and gave it a squeeze.

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