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Written By Vanora

Aug. 13, 2018, 8:41 p.m.(5/22/1009 AR)

It strikes me that if I were to ever remove their bracelets at the same time I could actually get them confused. Can you imagine?

The wrong brother would be Duke one day. Wouldn't that be awkward?

Written By Alis

Aug. 13, 2018, 8:10 p.m.(5/22/1009 AR)

Relationship Note on Ida

I think I can speak for both Edain and I when I say that no, it is we who are lucky! Every weapon I've commissioned from you has truly been a work of art. You always capture not just the best design of a weapon, but the soul of the person wielding it. We're so blessed to have you as our Hammer of the West, a Knight in every sense of the word.

I do not know what we would do without you, and I am so very happy for you and your husband-to-be.

Written By Oswyn

Aug. 13, 2018, 7:31 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Preparations for the mapping trip in the north are nearly finished. Goodwoman Candace suggested traveling with a merchant caravan for some of the time and put me in touch with someone. Once we part ways with the merchants, we will be traveling the land and speaking to locals to check the maps I've collected and correct them if necessary.

Spring came so soon; it feels like yesterday I was sweeping snow out of the front of the shop and copying maps with a cup of tea for warmth. The roads have cleared, the passages are free. The wet period is essentially finished, making this the ideal time for travel. I worry about what lies on the road ahead of us. I worry about what lies behind us.

I have learned so much since the last time I undertook a journey of this magnitude. There is still so much I do not know.

Written By Prisila

Aug. 13, 2018, 7:14 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Being as new to the city as I am, I have to wonder, what even is the worth in a Patron? What are they supposed to provide that one can't take for themselves? I understand the meaning of political alliances, I do, but each is supposed to be a well of mutual benefit. When it is no longer so then does it not behoove one to revisit the notion on whether or not it is a viable, long term arrangement to have?

We're all allies, in theory, we being the Compact and the Houses of course.

Yet even within that there are divisions of systems and lands in such a way that can only beckon a burgeoning competition for the resources within. Inevitably when one lands water runs dry they will look to the next to be quenched and only through war or diplomacy shall there be a resolution but when a people are thirsty, they will do anything for a glass of water.

Written By Josephine

Aug. 13, 2018, 7:05 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Platinum.

That's what I dream of.

I wonder if they would let me near the Ballistae that I am told the city had. Even just to touch it.

I wonder what it sings.

Written By Ida

Aug. 13, 2018, 5:57 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

It has been a pleasing few days in the forge. Even though I'm not actually taking commissions, there are a few people I would never say no to.

Prince Edain Valardin - I had made His Grace a rather simple arming sword not long after arriving in Arx. It's an old piece and I've grown so much as a smith since forging it. Still, it holds history, a story of its own, and the marks of use. Well-cared for by His Grace, it needed a bit of a professional looking over. There was a wash of nostalgia I probably didn't expect, but should have really. She is back in fine fighting condition and I hope will continue to serve His Grace well.

Sir Gerard Dastrid - My husband-to-be in an amazing man. I could write paragraphs about him easily, I think, and I still marvel at my fortune. He brought me some diamondplate to fashion into a sword and oaths, that metal and I have a tumultuous history. Forging something that could mean life or death for the knight who has taken my heart? Haven't felt that striking knife of worry since I made my brother Austen's blade. I could have done better with it, I think, but his compliments and kind words about the weapon (and me, too) put my concerns and disappointment to rest.

Princess Alis Valardin - A special project that I won't discuss here, but diamondplate once again, which...well. See above. The item came out wonderfully though, I think, and her words when it was delivered made me so proud to be one of the smiths for House Valardin, I think my heart literally swelled.

I passingly recall entries from Mistress Yasmine Rovashani, one of the Guild's famed models, and others about perfect happiness in moments of our lives. I suspect this is one of those moments in mine and I hope the gods know how grateful I am.

Written By Bliss

Aug. 13, 2018, 5:25 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Not all scars heal. Some go far too deep and caused too much damage. We continue to live anyway.

In light of the recent conversation, it seems a prudent time to mention that I've been working on overcoming another limitation of mine (despite, I am sure, Mercy Estelle's protests). When I was recovering, playing the vielle was an almost impossibly painful task to continue - the things do not seem that heavy, but the angle and the length of time? They get to you.

But I'm happy to say that my arm is finally at the point where I have been able to resume practice again. I'm rusty, but my fingers are beginning to remember how to be where they must.

And I've written a song again, instead of just making one up on the fly like usual. I'm happy with it, and I forgot how productive such things can be, how turmoil put into words makes beauty.

I just need a vielle of my own again (what happened to my old one is a story in and of itself). So if a luthier wishes to reach out to me or one of my adoring fans wishes to send one to their favorite Whisper? I would be much obliged.

Written By Archeron

Aug. 13, 2018, 5:12 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

As an aside, if you would like to know about what happens if you do not allow scars to harden, if you insist on focusing on the wound and not the healing? Do feel free to seek out my dear cousin Reveka. Should you survive the search, I am sure her views are informative on the subject.

Written By Archeron

Aug. 13, 2018, 5:08 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Apparently the discussion is on scars in the whites and what they mean. Though I cover them, I do not deny my scars - they are not small. What do they represent? Time. Each long scar bought me moments. Seconds. Each wrap of the thorn whip around my body drew my shot closer and, through the pain, the final arrow I loosed pierced my enemy's eye. And the difference between victory or defeat for my patrol.

What are they now? They are scars. Isn't the point that they heal over in time?

Written By Thena

Aug. 13, 2018, 4:21 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

I have a number of scars, but I earned the largest and ugliest of them by being a giant fuckup.

Written By Isidora

Aug. 13, 2018, 4:09 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Scandalous. Period.

Written By Faruq

Aug. 13, 2018, 3:50 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Relationship Note on Marian

** written in perfect flowing handwriting, loopy but legible. Someone took their time today. **

Scars are how we know we are stronger than the adversity that faces us.

They show that even if we may not have made the best choice we have survived to make better choices later. Hopefully.

I am proud of all of my scars.

Each was well earned.

Written By Josephine

Aug. 13, 2018, 2:40 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

My mind has been wandering of late. Not focused upon the pieces on my bench that murmur their desires. Desires that I have turned away from momentarily. Something lacks. Something makes my mind wander away. As if it has decided that right now it wants. I think about the words read by those who looked in the archives into heritage matters.

And there's a longing. A strange desire to work with something that I know I cannot find and none the less I want to work with it.

Written By Alarissa

Aug. 13, 2018, 2:04 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

I am tired today. A bone tiredness that wraps about me. I do not think that I even do that much at the moment. I have been trying to take the time to sit at the shrines and think quietly about things. As if that might give me rest. Victus asked my mind upon his two choices for voice and I agreed with them. Margot is steadfast and devoted and our goals align. Denica has been striving for the last few years to prove herself and we see her dedication day in and day out. So it brought me a smile and joy to see the proclamation signed by him. Fatima. Dear Fatima. I have no doubt that she and I will keep busy.

So tired.

Old.

I feel that today as well.

It might be a day for sitting before the fire in the library with honey upon my lap and just watch the flames.

Written By Delilah

Aug. 13, 2018, 1:32 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

The lengths to which we will strive for happiness deserve a moment of consideration. Spend some time while the tea brews or the server pours the wine into your glass, putting mind to but a single thought. Focusing so fully requires an effort, to be sure. It cannot be done whilst conversing with your dining companions or impatiently awaiting the arrival of a messenger.

Some in our society willingly devote hours of their time to slaying the beasts of paperwork and bureaucracy, that a fledgling organization may find equilibrium and focus their outreach upon those in need. Some brave the ghastly conditions found in untended woods or sick houses in the Lowers or impoverished shav'arvani villages, fearless despite risks to their own persons, to better deliver sought-after respite and resources.

A countless number of tasks await to improve the lot of one or many. The burden seems impossible, for even putting a few coins into charity seems but a pebble to the immense mountain range confronting me. But is it entirely so hopeless? I would hope not. Ask the Iron Guardsman delivering bread for a hungry family, in hopes their bellies may be full, and thus deprived the temptation to pilfer a loaf from the market. Ask the princess painstakingly developing a plan to better education among those so long without, they might seem unteachable. Ask the merchant with a kind word and a steady hand for anyone seeking assistance.

For all that shadows stretch over our city, and our land --
For all that the conversation turns to lighter topics that somehow seem to ignore the troubles beneath --

For all that quarrels and cares may prove petty held up to this mirror --

So many accomplish tremendous good, and tremendous things, day by day, unsung by the bard's, unknown save to those who receive their benevolence or witness the aftereffects when they return home.

Spare but a thought. Gratitude comes not far behind.

Then open the door, step out, and change your world.

Written By Monique

Aug. 13, 2018, 12:31 p.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Have you ever seen a superb Fireweave cloak? I have. Now. I don't want to raffle it off! By all the gods and all the spirits, don't make me give this away!

Written By Perronne

Aug. 13, 2018, 10:58 a.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

I may have a problem.

I tell myself it is not a problem. An up and coming merchant should be dressed in appropriate clothing, particularly if she wishes to ply her trade among those who have the wealth and status to afford her very particular goods. She should not just dress in whatever happens to have survived three years on the road without getting any obvious holes in it. With that in mind, I undertook to get some replacement 'business wear' for in the city.

The first outfit arrived today. It was...quite frankly, ridiculously expensive. And I love it! It doesn't quite hide the boots, but I am hardly going to wear NICE shoes out into those streets. There is a limit to fashion, at least for the average day. I also have made a good bargain for some very, VERY expensive materials for a certain gown I have dreamed of since I was a child. Arx has access to so many materials and amazing crafters, and I have done better than I'd hoped here, so I think I might finally be able to make that dream into a reality. I am very excited!

Now, if only I can just avoid spilling ink on my BRAND NEW CLOTHES. Augh! There has got to be a better way.

Written By Gwenna

Aug. 13, 2018, 10:44 a.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

I heard I missed a most wonderful affair which I had no choice by to miss. Well, I suppose we always have a choice, so I should say I chose duty over pleasure. Lady Margret and Princess Elgana put on a lovely party and I was sad not to be able to attend. Hopefully there will be another? Perhaps Lorenzo and I might conspire to do a little something ourselves! Well...maybe after the wedding. Perhaps best to focus on that party first.

Written By Khanne

Aug. 13, 2018, 9:41 a.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

Relationship Note on Riagnon

It was nice getting to know him a little better, lovely little conversation I none of my favorite places. Now, if I can just meet his sister....

As for snacks? Well, Lottie's is my favorite, but, I might be biased. The chef for the Keatons, Marie, is another favorite. I have heard there is a shop owned and operated by someone named Candace that is lovely. I believe someone sent me a treat from there once.... And of course, apricot pastries are the best and ultimate treat. Or anything with apricots in... I am partial to them, fresh or dried, mmmmmm, MM! On occasion I enjoy chocolate, but, give me nuts, fruits, cheeses, and breads and really... I wouldn't need anything else... well, I would need whiskey, and tea, but food wise.... I would be happy.

I once ate candied rose petals out of politeness to the hostess. I would not recommend those, personally. Not the worst thing I have eaten, but... it was like tasting the air after someone sprayed perfume. About as filling too. But, I suppose we all have our preferences, yeah?

Written By Denica

Aug. 13, 2018, 9:25 a.m.(5/21/1009 AR)

I feel as though I have the debate on perfection on a nearly daily basis, so in the interest of having this down in the whites for posterity, I'll throw my own thoughts into the matter.

Perfection is, at best, an illusion. The feeling of being perfectly at peace? It is called solitude, or quite simply contentment. The beauty of the love between parent and child is one of the most perfect things I ever bear witness to, but that does not include those moments when the child has driven her mother to wits end, where she just has to find a nanny just so that she may find a reprieve, if only for a moment. There is beauty in that love, but like all things there are flaws, imperfections and moments of weakness.

As an artist, I find perfection to be the most boring thing that one could strive for. If five artists gathered to paint a portrait of the same person, you will have five distinct and equally flawed and yet beautiful works of art. Five perfect portraits would be 5 copies of the same, is that truly something worth striving for? Or should we instead stop striving for the unachievable and learn to appreciate the beauty in those flaws that makes us all unique.

I did find beauty in the words of Lady Khanne, but I do believe to claim perfection in those things is to sell short the gritty flaws of life that really make the truth and beauty all around us truly stand out.

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