Pending ... |
::: smirk :::
[ a sonnet, not-quite ]:
Apparition -- the Ghost Detective 
Published: January 21, 2015 at 3:48am
In deepest, most Dead night:
Visiting morgues, funeral homes and cemeteries ...
[ Silent ... Unseen ... Incorporeal ... ]
... a paladin-lich -- the Ghost Detective -- listens to entreaties from the Wrongfully Dead
... entreaties for aid, advocacy ...
... for vengeance ...
... for Justice Most Severe ...
< < < * > > >
... Dead night ...
Within the glistening-pristine, most prestigious bodice of a city -- the city herself, a luscious yet tawdry promise;
a bejeweled matron, long since turned-out and worn-out ... now carrion ...
... slowly eaten away from the inside by the vermin who abetted in her not-so-hidden murder ...
the state-of-the-art, multimillion-dollar fortress of a panicked crime lord is but little better than air itself ...
... for a particular, uninvited [ Silent ... Unseen ... Incorporeal ... ] 'guest' ...
[ Silent ... Unseen ... Incorporeal ...
... until he wishes otherwise;
... until he arrives and is ... Inside ...
... just paces behind his prey:
a thoroughly camouflaged crime lord -- an exploitative pile of garbage who believed himself royalty, self-made aristocracy ...
... one of the newer, more crude and cocksure generation of vermin ]
a dreadful paladin-lich [ Terrible Justicar ] has arrived...
... and he brings Justice ...
... through vengeance ...
An all female monastic order and society dedicated to aiding, empowering, educating, civilizing and enlightening, protecting and vindicating all good-natured peoples, regardless of Race [Species]. They also vigorously enact the role of guardian and nurturer for the environment within all its aspects.
Their ranks bespeak a complex social and vocational strata; but there are two principal blocs – halves of the whole – that the rather diverse and complex classes and so’chytzû [“Life Paths”] fall into.
One is the monastic and contemplative but formidable caste of Whael – the Warrior Nun. One might reckon, upon hearing the term “Nun” that they are docile and hapless; [like the Buddhist/Taoist Zhao-Lin warrior-monks in our world’s ancient China and Tibet] these Whael are anything but! In fact, many a simple soldier and the accomplished warrior (whether female or male, either is welcome) aspiring to become more have beseeched these spiritual Warrior Nuns, to learn their legendary martial arts. But aside from their physical prowess and incredible skills they (as well as their counterpart division) conscientiously focus on developing the “near-limitless powers of the mind”: Zhai’ijho – the powers and willed phenomena of-and-through the mind!
The Whael also regularly become priestesses and ordained clergy for religions that extol and promote compassion, dignity, environmentalism, tolerance and peace.
The equally major division is the vivacious, wild, and wildly misunderstood [ oft deemed “scandalous” or “outrageous”, in most regions and realms) Gykéla’chyö; commonly known as Warrior Witches*. These are the magi, bards, mystics, who also crusader-advocates, councilor-delegates and – like their “Rice-dough Sisters”, the Warrior Nuns – Zhai’ijho-Duma-dûekifu (loosely meaning: “the Honored Matron-Proctor of Zhai’ijho … more on this, later).
Characters within the world of
What the Sister Moons See
[ By Brian G. Coverley ]
(Inspired from Wizards of the Coast’s, Dungeons & Dragons' Forgotten Realms and other, published works)
1) Hél-i-Fás Grimleaf [ aka the Heartbreaker, Disgraced among the Graced; the Betrayers’ Vex . . . the Shadow of If; the Shadow of Hope <<---not yet though; but in future . . . Perhaps ] a freewheeling, acrobatic rogue and exceptional assassin; a mercenary; a venal 'Weaver' (Illusionist) …. with an uncanny talent with, and penchant for shadows and darkness
"Grimleaf … Heartbreaker … Disgraced among the Graced … The Betrayers’ Vex; The Shadow of If; The Shadow of Hope" are monikers/titles a fortune-teller, troubadour~bard and prostitute (who seemed to have a fondness for him) disclosed to Hél-i-Fás, when she read his palms . . .
She said they would come to him and what they'll mean will be apparent to him "one day" ... and that *realms* may come to know him by them ...
To which he heartily laughed with enthusiastic disbelief (and more-than-a-little derision) . . .
Often playing the cad and lout, and almost-always venomously irreverent to nearly anything bespeaking of propriety, virtue and piety --- especially piety --- it’s hard to believe that Hél-i-Fás has some meaningful destiny involving the world and perhaps its deliverance. But among all mortal kind, the gods are renowned for at least one trait... their unparalleled sense of irony.
Hél-i-Fás was thrown into this world, with an initial fate that most would likely call 'cursed'. He was the only son of an interracial [inter-species] marriage, within a region of the world where such couplings are rare and heavily looked down upon, between a man and a Hi’Sae’Yu noblewoman. The region of the world they lived in, had long lost sight of the value [ the blessings ] in interracial union and racial intermixture. His family were shunned by both their insular communities for engaging in such ‘rash’ and purportedly ‘ignoble’ and 'disgusting' behavior.
That, in of itself, was not the "cursed fate". It was the calamity that almost immediately arrived thereafter, and all that would follow. In retrospect, Hél-i-Fás (and any other knowing his tale) has made the presumption that his life be some cruel joke --- not-so-much at his expense, per se, but simply a joke: a grand, cosmic joke . . .
Unbeknownst to the victims (but really the unleash from long and quiet preparation), an invasion-force of thousands Twisted Dragon-Kin with tens of thousands of their allies, the equally malignant the Shadow-Fae Fiends -- both coordinated and directed by The Betrayers* -- swept across the region. He was barely older than toddle-kin (what we’d call a toddler). Desperately the longtime segregated, insular communities of human and "Graced" [ Elves ] formed a slapdash alliance and attempted counterattack . . . but it was feckless.
Jarom-Krokus, Hél-i-Fás' human father perished along with thousands comprising the hastily formed, but disorganized and uncoordinated coalition-militia. Hél-i-Fás' mother, Nóyæ-Nénæ, and he were swept up, by what was left of the coalition-militia into a massive flock of miserable (doomed) refugees . . . Unforeseen by any, the refugees -- remnants of a whole region of elves and humanity -- would eventually spend the rest of their bleak and short days as slaves, "entertainment" and fodder to the absolute worst in "human nature" and the outright evil of "human-like" (humanoid) peoples.
The remnants of the regional population intermingled with fragments of the decimated [ Elven ] Compact, and as one winding, caravan, they attempted an exodus to (hoped-for) safety, cutting partly across the Jhónum’Oise (a narrow stretch of steppes, bracketed by a salt lake on one side, and a razor wall of mixed igneous rock and shale) . . . only to run right into the waiting claws of a battalion-sized force of Reapers: an overt embodiment -- the war-hammer and sword -- of the Devourers of Innocence and Hope.
Hél-i-Fás suffered the steady, thorough erosion of almost any* belief in: kindness, generosity, charity and especially in justice and goodness itself as he witnessed (both day and night) his mother viciously used as both sex-slave and menial labor to the point of exhaustion, by the Reapers. He was also abused and degraded though not quite as much nor in very same manner; such ‘special treatment’ awaited Hél-i-Fás in a millers’ town -- Lyntehlokk (hundreds of miles away in the west) -- the Reapers sold him to. This went on for roughly six years, whilst enslaved to the massive, nomadic force of Reapers who continued incessantly terrorizing remote regions, poorly governed, or only nominally overseen by sovereign nations (or sovereigns) said regions were "technically"/"officially" belonging to.
But the pain and horror of seeing his mother treated so, with no means to stop it corroded his soul. The trauma he had suffered inscribed a seemingly intractable conviction, he once confessed to a lovely, but clearly young and still naive prostitute, in the languid afterwards of a mutually heartfelt fucking:
“My adorable idiot, life is cruel and has little regard for what or whom we are told is ‘righteous’. ‘Fairness’ is predicated more upon chance than upon any particular principle, or its advocacy. Providence is a dream for the the weak-willed and the desperate. Life offers no promises above anything other than that it's uncertain and brutal for either the virtuous or the vile -- for anyone. And lastly, my lovely-sweet, nubile idiot, what’s available in our respective lives, must be sought out, fought for, or even stolen through whatever talent, skill and guile you might have. The gods, if such exist, find us briefly amusing, before we pass back into the Void.”
Before he was purchased by Forghram Lyntehl owner and mayor of Lyntehlokk, Hél-i-Fás achieved two things: commit to eidetic memory the identities of each, every one of her mother’s tormentors, and he gave a quick merciful end to his completely broken mother -- snapping her neck just after a surreptitious, brief-yet-heartfelt conversation, upon her bedside within her hut (holding pen), deep in the night.
Hél-i-Fás knew he was nowhere near ready to fulfill his silent, but gravely earnest vow to exact vengeance on each, every one of her mother’s tormentors . . . He knew he needed to learn and learn well; to grow truly powerful and undoubtably capable, in order to fulfill the execution -- the annihilation -- of his nemeses -- the Reapers (and ultimately their masters, the Devourers of Innocence and Hope, though he does not know of them … yet), the Shadow-Fae Fiends and the Twisted-Dragon-Kin. So Hél-i-Fás bid his time, all the while tirelessly improving himself as best as he could, given his circumstance. In the interim, while trying to exude and maintain the appearance and manner of a truly subservient, broken refugee-now-slave, Hél-i-Fás kept honing the true weapons he knew he had -- his intellect; his agility and dexterity, his increasingly deepening ability for stoicism mixed with sarcastic wit. Indeed, Hél-i-Fás bid his time . . .
But it would not prove an easy undertaking. Often he came close . . . to being wholly consumed by his deep pain, by the silent rage, that often churned [and churns] and swirled [and swirls] into abject despair. The daily maltreatment, the systemic and appalling abuse -- including intermittent rape by Forghram Lyntehl, his eldest sons Merrik and Fjork*, and a significant amount of the millers -- had plunged Hél-i-Fás further into a absolutely cold bleakness [blackness] of heart and mind . . .
Many years later, with his approaching into his physical prime  Hél-i-Fás' opportunity came -- when the entire town was hopelessly drunk from nearly two days of nonstop celebration for an exceptionally productive season and a quite unexpected lessening of taxes by the local liege-lord overseeing Lyntehlokk.
In the deep of night's cover (the "whisper of morning" as some would phrase it), Hél-i-Fás snuck into Forghram Lyntehl's house (earlier, with the entire town oblivious, he poisoned all seven of Forghram's, viscous Rottweilers), slit Forghram's and Merrik's throat, but after gagging and castrating them . . . Immediately after this unceremonious but gruesome act of vengeance, Hél-i-Fás went to quick, focused work: filching and looting ordinary (but good quality) studded-leather armor, three outfits of fine clothing (including two pairs of boots), roughly 140 'marks' [gold coins], several days worth of food and water (and 2 liters of wine), one of Forghram's best rapiers, a simple short sword and four daggers; ransacking the tanner's and blacksmith's shoppe; after all that, he deftly doused the mill, Forghram Lyntehl's house, the inner walls of the town, the taverns, the smithy and the tanner's shoppe in lantern's oil (a variant of naphtha) . . . and then set the *whole town* afire. Immediately, he appropriated a small boat and absconded the scene nonchalantly yet swiftly oft times whistling, heading downriver, with Lyntehlokk behind him . . . engulfed in flames.
Many days -- and scores or leagues -- later, still riding his stolen boat downriver, Hél-i-Fás realized when he murdered the entire town (essentially in their sleep), he achieved a true state of . . . euphoria . . . and that he was still feeling it.
(Fjork spent his time with several of his cronies repeatedly raping and beating the surviving family of a luckless farmer-woodsman, as his way of celebrating his father's unexpected good fortune. He took singular pleasure in humiliating and then killing the head of the household, in front of the three women, before he raped and beat them bloody. . . )
Nearly another two days had passed before one of the he liege-lord's ledger-clark and one of his sheriffs came to Lyntehlokk, in response to Fjork's demand for assistance and to initiate investigation.
The ledger-clark's and sheriff's investigations confirmed that the fire was indeed manufactured, but they were dubious as to whether it was truly deliberate, and (thus) some kind of malice. They were far more inclined to believe, and glibly suggested that it was the result of recklessness and negligence, since the entire town had engaged in an unusual and unusually fervent carousal and revelry. Fjork would abide none of their arguments. In his heart, he knew who would've been capable of perpetrating this . . . even if he couldn't prove it.
So on his own, Fjork Lyntehl has set out to find Hél-i-Fás … to avenge his family.
Initially --- within the first, of those four months --- Hél-i-Fás lived in what passed for the back-alleys of Deckert. A seaside port-town, that doesn't see a great deal of trade, but seems to do moderately well nonetheless, Hél-i-Fás chose Deckert as his final stop, after a week riding downriver. It was a rough month, and he did what he could to lay low, yet not starve. Yet while that first month was a hard and precarious one, every day seemed pure godsend, bringing unprecedented happiness to Hél-i-Fás. For the first time in nearly his whole life, he was free; no longer property, living in degradation and terror, night-and-day.
Within the first week of the second month, skulking and scavenging in what passes for Deckert's underside, Hél-i-Fás made a blunder in his daily efforts to not starve. He snuck into and raided one of the outside, storage sheds for staples as well as a sea-glass jug of uisge beatha [ "lively water" ], much more commonly known as whiskey; in doing so he activated the larder's magical, telephonic, but silent alarms.
And thus he 'got made', but he didn't know it … not until the inn's proprietors slyly and blithely approached him in his hovel, under the pier.
"You know, all this brackish water you're practically living in --- it's terrible for that fine, studded-leather armour and that fine rapier I'm sure you also stole."
"And though this little burg has naught for charity, besides what shamefully little the churches and temples offer, my darling husband Kennewíck and I are not folk to turn away those in need … especially one of our kind . . . one of our kith."
And from that fateful day, Hél-i-Fás was brought into something wholly new and (initially) terrifying him: a life wherein kindness, friendship and love were no longer either most far-distant (yet deeply painful) memory … or bizarre, incomprehensible abstraction.
Kennewíck Ogden and Hélennä-Rhë Ogden readily become Hél-i-Fás' contacts into the criminal underworld (not merely the underside of Deckert, at that). But incredibly, just as readily, they also took on role of his mentors.
And atop of that, unspoken (but fully understood and readily embraced) something else immediately emerged among all --- an erotic and romantic involvement . . . Three lovers -- a Triskele*, seemingly not only not at odds with each other, but actually quite complimentary and supportive.
By the end of that second month, the three had become fast friends, with clear genuine indication of becoming more; a little earlier, Kennewíck and Hélennä-Rhë Ogden had put Hél-i-Fás and themselves to work -- on the endeavor of training him to fully become what he seemed [ seems ] clearly meant to be … a rogue, and most likely … an assassin.
REAL NAME: Karuzen I'Shàyaemlah
[ derivative of the term Húntàrr from the language of his people (his species and lineage therein); it has three connotations:
Karuzen calls himself such to play a constant inside-joke upon himself.
Of course ostensibly, upon a casual hearing, the name sounds like "Hunter"
Something Karuzen took into consideration ...
Height: 6 ft.
He seems to *physiognomically* to be a flawless blend of Mongolian, Russian and Japanese.
And so very *lithe; lean yet undeniably solid ... Supple*
Charcoal Black, deep Paynes Grey with traces of hematite
[ Obsidian after sunset or indoors; Bioluminescent scarlet/fuchsia when deeply enraged ]
■ Physical: 25
■ Chronological/Actual: 165 ... give-or-take 2.6 million light years [ approximate distance from Earth to Andromeda Galaxy.
Life-Expectancy: 4,350 standard Earth-years ]
Predominant attributes and qualities:
▪ Superhuman Speed, Agility, Dexterity, Strength, Durability and Resilience
▪ A highly localized, quasi-telekinesis, wherein *at will* he can grasp (and for all intents and purposes, "bond" with or to) an object, and/or the surface of an object or being. The grasp is effectively inseparable, *insuperable ... unbreakable.
One way he commonly (¿or famously/infamously? ) applies this unusual, telekinesis-variant is ... a form of "Wall-Crawling"; and an unprecedented seemingly unbeatable variant of Chi-Sao [ in Wing Chun Kung-Fu (咏春拳) ] more commonly known as "Sticky Hands"
▪ Psychic/Psionic Clairsentience (primarily visual and auditory); this includes a vigorous, now highly developed (thus acute) *Danger-Sense* ... and a powerful (immersive, utterly vivid) *Precognition*
▪ Psychic/Psionic Invisibility
▪ Physical Invisibility
▪ Superior Senses
[ Smell, Taste, Sight, Hearing and Touch:
He can see the IR and UV bands of the EM-spectrum, hear 200x's better than a Timber Wolf, perceive and identify scents and tastes 1000x's more keenly than a rattlesnake, (and) perceive and differentiate surfaces/textures/materials and barometric conditions more accurately than a tarantula... among *a host* of other incredible feats!!! ]
▪ Total Cellular Regeneration/Hyper-Fast, Hyper-Efficient Healing
[ example: a severed/destroyed complex appendage, such as his hands or feet take approximately 7.337555 minutes to completely regrow; he can fully regenerate lost tissue from any type of burn (with varying rates) ]
▪ Hyper-adaptive Superior Immune-system
▪ Consummate martial artist (and combat tactician):
[ Koga-ryu; Iga-ryu; Kigakushi-ryu; Hanbe-ryu; Tsutsumi-ryu ]
[ 一刀流: one sword school ]
大東流合気柔術: Daitō-ryū Aiki-jūjutsu
[ he simply (deliberately) calls it 'Akijutsu' ]
Gungdo and Gungsul
본국검법: Bon Kuk Geom Beop
八卦掌 Bàguà Zhǎng
太极拳: Tai Chi Chuan
形意拳: Xing Yi Quan
咏春拳: WingTsun/Wing Chun
Pencak Silat [ Java; Nias Is; Borneo ]
Savate [ aka Boxe Française ]
Capoeira [ Brazilian and Angolan ]
קְרַב מַגָּע: Krav Maga
▪ Consummate gymnast, acrobat and dancer
[ Russian, Spanish, Portuguese, Latino, French, Hungarian, Romani, African, Indian, Chinese, as well as African American/Afro-Brazilian/Latino/Son Cubano/Korean Breakdance and Hip-hop systems and styles ]
▪ *Perfect/Incorruptible* Eidetic Memory
▪ Perfect Pitch
▪ Vocal Mimicry
Japanese (11 dialects, including modalities that are essentially archaic or "dead"),
Korean (15 dialects, including modalities that are essentially archaic or "dead"), Mandarin, Han, Cantonese, French, Potawatomi, Ojibwa/Chippewa, Lakota Sioux, Arapaho, Inuit, English (15 dialects including three distinct variants of Canadian, five signature dialects belonging to the UK, three signature dialects to specific regions in the US, and ... modalities that either are or approaching archaic), Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, Latin, German, Dutch, Finish, Swedish, Gaelic (Ancient and Contemporary), Welsh, Hungarian, Yiddish, Czech, Slovak, Polish, Russian, Ukrainian, Serbo-Croatian, Romanian, Romani, Greek (Ancient and Demotic), Bulgarian, Macedonian, Turkish, Farsi/Persian, Hebrew, Aramaic, Arabic, Pushtu, Urdu, Hindi, Tamil, Java, Afrikaans, Zulu, Swahili, Xhosa, Bantu, Masai, Kongo, Quechua, Guarani, Aymara, Nahuatl, Lenguas Mayas, Vietnamese, Thai, and Tagalog, Esperanto, Japanese Sign, French Sign, German Sign, British Sign
In each and every case, he demonstrates impeccable fluency.
▪ Ecology and Natural History
▪ Hunting and Tracking
▪ Marksmanship: Rifles and Small Firearms
▪ Disguise and Impersonation
▪ Philosophy -- numerous disciplines/tenets: PhD
U.S. civil, commercial, corporate, criminal and Constitutional; U.K. civil and criminal, national as well as legislative procedure; Russian civil, commercial, criminal, federal and legislative; French civil, criminal, commercial, governmental/legislative; German civil, commercial, criminal, and national/federal; Japanese, Korean, Chinese and Taiwanese -- civil, commercial/corporate, criminal, administrative/national, as well as legislative process; International [ both Jus Gentium and Jus Inter Gentes ] and Human Rights laws; International Maritime laws
▪ Sailing and Nautical/Maritime sciences
▪ Aeronautics and Aviation: military and civilian
[ PPL, CPL, ATPL, MCC]
[ Fixed Wing and Rotary aircraft ]
▪ Biochemistry and Biotechnology: PhD in each; MD in the latter
▪ Political Science: PhD
▪ Forensic Medicine: PhD, MD
▪ Communication and Information Technologies: PhD
▪ Cryptology and Cryptography: PhD
▪ Psychology -- numerous disciplines/specializations: PhD in each
▪ Criminology: PhD
▪ Botany, Herbology and Natural (Homeopathic) Medicine: PhD, MD
▪ Climatology: PhD
▪ Electrical, Mechanical, Chemical, and Civil Engineering: PhD in each
▪ Computer Sciences: PhD
▪ Mathematics: PhD
▪ Economics: PhD
▪ Astronomy and Astrophysics: PhD in each
Accomplished Pianist [ Classical and Jazz ], Guitarist [ Spanish, Irish and English Folk, Argentinian and Mexican, Classical and Jazz ] Violinist, and Percussionist [ numerous types and styles ]:
▪ 尺八: Shakuhachi
[ Karuzen is a master of 吹禅: suizen -- "Blowing Meditation", a signature art of 普化宗: Fuke-shū ]
▪ Gourmet chef:
Japanese [ including cuisine oft considered imperial/royal ], Korean [ including cuisine oft considered imperial/royal ], French [ particularly provincial, as well French-Canadian ]; Irish and British Isles; Portuguese; Spanish [ especially Castillian ]; First Nations Native American; Argentinian; Brazilian; Mexican [ central/inland, gulf-coast, Pacific coast ]; Cajun Louisianan; Italian [ Tuscan; Venetian; Southern/Coastal ]; Chinese [ Mandarin, Cantonese, Han, Szechuan ], German, Swedish, Thai, Indian [ Northern and Southern ], Lebanese; Senegalese; Sudanese; Kenyan and Ethiopian; Moroccan; and Greek
IQ: 378.65 [ EQ: 526 ]
■■■■ NOTICE and WARNING ■■■■
This character, his image and iconography, his name and alias, and all fabricated terminology/fabricated language pertaining to him, is exclusively the intellectual property of Brian G. Coverley, the creator of said character, imagery, iconography, and all said-mentoned text and terminology fabricated and employed toward description. Through its very publication, this intellectual property is automatically subject to, and protected by extant United States Copyright Laws.