Star Wars Roleplay: Chaos

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Home & Hearth [Mysa]

The Oathkeeper

He'd remained sat with her as she recovered from her harrowing ordeal at the abandoned temple. The healers of Voss were galaxy-famous for their skills, and whatever injuries Mysa had sustained were all but erased. Her mind, however, had to mend on its own, and Thurion knew it would be a slow process. The events the girl had to endure in that desolate place could very well scar her for life, but for the time being she was safe and sound in the comfort of a warm bed - the first night she'd spent outside of a hospital since her rescue.

Thurion didn't wish to wake her as she had finally gotten her first full night of rest, and instead sat by her bedside grabbing a few hours of sleep himself. It was he who insisted that he stay with her until they reached Midvinter, for who knows where her mind would run off to if left to its own devices for long?

With Midvinter coming into view, it was time to wake the sleeping beauty. "Mysa," he spoke softly while nudging her gently, trying to stir her from her sleep. "It is time to go home now, to Midvinter. Your mother and father will be waiting for us." Must be an odd circumstance for a child, having two sets of parents who loved her just as much.

He got down on his knees to bring his face close to hers, touching her forehead with his and caressing her silvery hair. "Good morning, Snowflake."

[member="Mysa Snowstrider"]
Dreams were like thinly veiled torture.

Each time she had closed her eyes since leaving the most hellish place, it all came rushing back. She had refused to sleep for many days, only succumbing to it when the nurses gave her a little something to help her drift off. Nightmares were commonplace, incessant, and had her tossing and turning restlessly.

On Voss she had begged for them to stop inducing sleeping. They had done so anyway.

Now that she was out of the facility, now that the physical wounds were healed and all that surrounded her was the presence of her beloved Thurion, her Guardian, her Uncle, her Papa... Now she had rested wholly. No drugs required, no thrashing in the bed. Just sound sleep.

Perhaps her fatigue finally caught up with her.

She could hear something on the edge of her murky thoughts, a voice soothingly calling for her. But she did not want to leave the first bit of respite she'd had in what felt like an eternity. She did not want to face reality once more.

Slowly she was dragged from that state regardless. For a moment, as her eyes opened, she felt certain that the being that loomed over her was the alchemical fiend from the Temple. A suppressed scream escaped her, before the glaring red eyes turned soft and blue, and the shadows melted before the radiance of what really stood over her.

The girl sat upright, wrapping her arms around him. And then what he said finally rang within her mind.


They were back on Midvinter?

"Not Midvinter" she whispered. It wasn't safe, what if Joon?

Her panic peaked, and she struggled to breathe for a few moments. How badly she wanted to see her family. How much she longed to present baby Thrand with the furs she had hunted for him, which no doubt remained within the Crowseye household. Would Gideon remember her after all these months? Would he despise her for her absence?

It was all too much, and as she sat there clutching him she shook with silent tears.

"They're going to hate me." All of them.

[member="Thurion Heavenshield"]
When his niece and daughter squirmed out of the covers to sit up and wrap her arms around him, Thurion couldn't help but let out a warm chuckle. Such a gentle thing she was, and always had been since childhood. Truly she was a Vi'dreya, for he knew Kära to be just as tender in her youth to those she cares for, and Nina was as saintly as they come. Rather immediately did he put his own arms around her as the two embraced one another as father and daughter for the first time in a long time.

"Shh," he soothed her, caressing her white hair at the back of her head. "Nothing bad will happen to Midvinter by your return, only good things will come of it. My brother and Kära will be overjoyed to see you, and little Thrand will get to meet his big sister." He pulled away just enough to look into her eyes, so very similar to both Kära and Nina, yet Mysa was just as much her own person as the other two Umbarans. "Siblings are just as important to each other as their parents," he told her as his face grew serious for but a moment, for without his brother to look after him he would not be here today, nor would he be the man he was.

He then continued to soothe her as she voiced more concerns, holding her in fatherly embrace once more. "No-one could ever hate you, my Snowflake. You've done nothing wrong." A kiss was placed upon her cheek, wet from tears. "Whatever evils befall the world we live in are often times out of our control, and all we can do is adapt and push on until the evil subsides. We endure, and in enduring we grow stronger. That's just the way of the world, and of life itself."

His hands now settled upon her cheeks, wiping her tears away in the process, and placed his forehead against hers with a warm smile reaching from cheek to cheek. "Come now, sweet child. Let's get you ready."

[member="Mysa Snowstrider"]
Everything he said made sense. It cut through the haze of her mind, and left her trembling yet whole. No more tears or whimpers, no more clutching at his shirt, she simply rested against him and allowed her breathing to return to usual. She would be lying if she said she wasn't excited; the very idea of seeing her little brother again made her so very happy, how much would he have grown in so short a space of time? How long had she been missing?

It was difficult to tell.

Sniffling for the last time, she finally sat back on the bed and watched as Thurion expertly slipped into Father mode. She missed him, she missed all of the Heavenshields. While she loved her true parents, her birth parents, she had never quite connected with them the way she had Thurion, Coci, and the others. That pained her to realize. The way their eyes had lit up when they saw Thrand, whenever they looked at him...

She looked away, it wasn't something she should be thinking about. She loved her family dearly, all of them. With time perhaps the small wounds which remained would heal.

"I'm ready, Papa" she whispered, looking up at him as he set his forehead to hers. No smile, though she felt soothed regardless. What would it be like to tread amidst the snow of her home? It had been so long since she'd been subjected to such harsh weathers, Joon had purposely avoided the wintery planets of the Galaxy...

[member="Thurion Heavenshield"]
"You look ready," he told her with nothing but warmth in his voice and took possession of her hand, placing a kiss upon it before standing up. Yet when it came to letting go of her he hesitated, he always did; he recalls far too many occasions where he lets go of someone dear to him only to never be able to hold them again. Such things scars one for life, and should one more loved one fall before his time he did not think his heart could bear the sorrow. Him, or nobody.

Eventually he did let her go, stepping out of her chambers to get dressed for the weather while he went to the bridge to prepare for landing. As he sunk down into the black-leather seat of the captain's chair, Thurion looked over to his trusty Teetoo at his side who chirped happily. The blue astromech droid had been with him for gods know how long, and had never once wavered in his duty to the ship. He reached out and placed his hand upon the droid's dome-shaped head for a gentle patting. "You too, old friend."

The Oathkeeper cut through the atmosphere of Midvinter like a hot knife through butter, descending upon the wintery planet like countless times before. By now the sight of the iron longship sailing amongst the clouds had become a common sight to the native Valkyri, who took it as a good omen whenever their fiercest protector could be seen effortlessly traversing the skies.

As the grand city of Tháinbroek came into view they headed straight for it, and once the landing gears were deployed they sat down just outside the gates. From the briefest glance he could tell the walls had been reinforced and rebuilt since the Sith attack, improving the stonework with thick durasteel worked to perfection by the Valkyri blacksmiths. "It is time, child," he informed her with a knock on her door.

[member="Mysa Snowstrider"]
When the time came, Mysa rose from the bed on unsteady footing and made her way to a small chair in the corner of the room. Laid upon it was her cloak, cleaned of the blood of innocents, as well as her leather armour. By its side sat her hand-and-half sword, something she had sorely missed the sight of. Her bow and quiver were long since gone, discarded by Joon no doubt; it pained her to realize as much, but she knew in time she could craft her own once again.

Slowly, painstakingly, she dressed. While all of the wounds were healed, the scars remained and the look of them in her bunks mirror made the girl cringe. But she had asked to keep them, the reminder was crucial for her own well being. In time she would be able to look upon them unwavering. Not today.

She looked away and finished dressing, eyes falling upon the final piece of her ensemble. A gift sent by her mother, but which the girl had yet to wear. All it did was remind her of baby Felix, and she worried over his fate. Had he made it back to the Great Hall? Was he safe? She did not know, and hadn't asked. Hopefully Gideon had found him if not, the boy would know him by sight alone.

Knocking on her door awoke her from her thoughts. She carefully tied the chain around her throat and placed the scabbard at her belt, before moving out of the room and staring upon her Guardian. Her hand sought his, but she said nothing; a stern resolve in her eyes. She was ready, even if she didn't completely feel it.

[member="Thurion Heavenshield"]
While waiting, Thurion wrapped his set of thick, grey furs around his shoulders, making him seem almost twice as large, just as Mysa emerged from the chambers. A smile found his lips, for she looked just as she had the first time the two met in the halls of his father - a fair bit taller, but still dwarfed by the likes of him and his brother. To him, she would always be his little Snowflake, just like all the Vi'dreya ladies. "Everything will be fine," he assured her as they held hands while disembarking.

The Midvinter was fair for the season, with only the lightest snowfall and gentlest breeze barely capable of catching their hair. "Open the gates," a guard hollered from up above, and moments later the thick, heavy iron gates of Tháinbroek were pushed open from within by no less than four men. Before the same men could even find the thought to kneel before their lord and princess, Thurion shook his head in protest and instead bowed his head to them all. "Don't you dare," he had told them with a chuckle.

Wandering through the city towards the Great Hall, Thurion noted the rebuilt homes and fortifications. The skill of the Valkyri carpenters made it seem like the once-ruined structures had never fallen to begin with, blending the old base with brand new repairs seamlessly. His and Coci's decision to retire from Jedi buisness and settle down on Midvinter properly had never felt more right, for change was coming to this ancient world. The arrival of the Sith had seen to that.

Still holding her by the hand, the two marched up the hill until stood before the ornate wooden doors. Just as he was about to pound on the large set of doors to be let inside, the door swung open seemingly on its own. On the other side stood his brother, the king, and before even a word could be uttered by anyone he'd pulled Mysa in for the warmest and closest of embraces. "We thought we had lost you to the stars," he whispered past her ear while rubbing his cheek against hers.

[member="Mysa Snowstrider"]
Her hand sought his as the ship lowered toward the icy world below; his words of comfort warmed her, though she did not dare break the spell which she had put upon herself by speaking in turn. Instead she leaned her head softly to his arm and waited.

It felt like an entire age had passed, the anxiety bubbling back to the surface. What if Joon was lying in wait? What if she decided to exact revenge against Mysa's family? For a moment the girl shook at the thought, before setting her jaw once again. No. It wouldn't happen, and if Joon tried then this time Mysa would be strong enough to stop her. She had to be.

Together they walked down the ramp and the comforting crunch of snow graced her ears. Tears pricked at her eyes as the cool breeze washed over her, and she rubbed her cheeks against his arm when they fell. "Home" she breathed... Midvinter had been the only home she had ever truly known, and each time she was gone from it she grew forlorn. Now... Now she knew only its majesty as it came into full view, no longer obstructed by the ship.

It was good to see the gates in one piece, that was for sure. The sound of the strong Valkyri voices made her heart swell, and as the gate was thrown inward and the City beyond was shown to her the troubled expression was replaced by one of serenity. How far they had come; they had faced so much, these people, and yet they had not allowed the adversity to tarnish their homes for long.

Mysa bowed her head in thanks to the men who had allowed them access; while she remained close to Thurion's side, with her hand remaining in his, the small gap between them grew by another inch or two as all the worries she faced were washed away. The Gods spoke to her here, they watched over her. She took in all that there was to see of the City, as they walked the path toward the Great Hall, several Valkyri were stood on the edge of the path watching, it was rare that a ship descended even these days.

And then the snow was gone, and the wooden step which sat before the grand doorway thudded underfoot. Only then did the anxiety return. This was it, there was no turning back. Would they be angry with her? Would they even want her back under their roof?

She took a very slight step back, and looked down to her feet in shame. "I don't know if I can..."

The creaking of the old door had her looking up tentatively, though she was swept into a large, warm hug before she could do even that. She could smell the brimstone, and the fire, and knew in that instance that all was well.

All would always be well.

"Papa..." she breathed, setting both hands to curl into his shirt in the hopes of pulling him closer still. She did not wish to let go, she did not wish to leave again. She felt like the child who had seen them for the first time, only there was none of the awkwardness or the fear.

Tears she'd been trying to suppress since they arrived in orbit came tumbling out, until she could no longer catch her breath.

"I'm sorry... I'm so sorry..."

[member="Thurion Heavenshield"] / [member='Thyrian Hearthfire']
Thyrian said nothing in regards to her being sorry, for there simply was nothing for her to feel sorry for. It did not exist to him, and therefor he didn't acknowledge her apology. Instead he simply lifted her off the cold ground as they embraced one another and took a step back, then spun around to put her back down in the warmth and safety of the Great Hall. Only now did he pull away from their embrace to look at her more closely, hands cupping her cold cheeks and looking down into her blue eyes with a gentle smile. "Welcome home, Snowflake."

From behind Thurion placed a hand on his brother's shoulder, and Thyrian looked over his shoulder. "Thank you, little brother. No father could ever have hoped for a greater gift than to have their child returned to them." Thurion tried not to look affected by his elder's words and dismissed it all with a casual wave of his hand, when in actuality his brother's gratitude and appreciation meant the world to him. With father gone, and Master Asha long before that, the person he looked up to now was his big brother.

"I assure, it was all happenstance," he jested with a smirk. "I just so happened to be in the neighborhood." At that time one of the side doors was slowly pushed open just enough to fit a toddler crawling around on all fours after escaping his mother's clutches. Along with said toddler a particular feline appeared, as if escorting the miniature humanoid, only to rush over to nuzzle Mysa's legs and ankles while purring with joy. "On the run, are we," Thyrian remarked humorously with a raised eyebrow as Thrand made his way over to them. "Come here, you..."

Thrand giggled as he was picked up and settled to his father's chest, nuzzling his bubbly cheek against his shirt. "Yeah, those tend to get around, somehow," Thurion remarked as well, grooming his beard as if trying to decipher some ancient mystery. When the lad then laid eyes on Mysa, his eyes widened and he began reaching for her with his short, chubby arms. "Mysa, your brother wishes to say hello."

[member="Mysa Snowstrider"]
For a moment she felt warm and weightless, hauled from the ground as though she weighed less than a feather and set upon the threshold of her home. Even the wooden flooring was comforting, heated by the countless hearths which no doubt glared orange and crackled. While the Galaxy had figured out more practical methods of existing, there was something far greater about the primitive methods found here.

She leaned into the touch of his hands and lifted her gaze to look upon his. There was no disappointment in his expression, only gratitude at her return. That made her feel worse, how could she have been through so much, done things she was not proud of, and expect everyone to be fine with it? Yet he was. His view of her had not changed so much as a fraction. She did not feel worthy.

While the men began talking, she was met with the sensation of another presence... One she only vaguely recalled. She had been away for so long now, and Thrand had only been a few weeks old when she left. Now he was pottering about, and had made his way over to the door to see what all the fuss was about. Mysa's expression softened, and a genuine smile graced her lips. Her little brother... What more could she ask for?

Even when her Father spoke to her, asserting the boys wish to greet her, she barely had to think; she extended both hands out to cradle him toward her, and sank her face against the top of his head. He still had that baby smell, the one which clung to all new life.

"Hello, little Flame" she whispered, holding him gently yet in a way that spoke of experience. How many times had she willingly assisted Gideon's family with the little ones? Her heart felt ripe for exploding, it felt so good to be home. All thoughts of Joon were banished, and instead she stepped a little further into the Hall and glanced around.

Her Mother stood watching, expression guarded yet not at all stern. As though she was regarding the situation.

And then, without warning, the woman stepped close and enveloped both Mysa and Thrand in an embrace the likes of which Mysa had never before experienced from her Mother. "I feared I had lost you..." came the whisper at her ear, "I did not realize the bond we shared until it was almost too late. Forgive me, my child, I never meant to be so cold."

But there was nothing to forgive. Mysa was the luckiest child in all the Galaxy; she had two full families, and between them she had every possible avenue covered. The sentiment was appreciated, though, Mysa wanted nothing more than to make her parents proud, to have their love... The likes of which she now felt radiating from the small Umbaran woman still holding her.

[member="Thyrian Hearthfire"]

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