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About Saphiara

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  • Birthday 11/16/1981

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  1. Saphiara


    ((Bio updated for BfA/Shadowlands))
  2. I'm talking about here, as well - perhaps primarily. I recognize that in-game interaction might be limited, particularly now at the beginning of the xpac when people aren't just sitting around. But it doesn't really feel like people are terribly interested in interacting with me here, either. Maybe that's my fault; I wonder if people remember who I was 8 years ago and don't care who I am now. I've thought about wiping everything and starting fresh with a secret character, but that just feels dishonest. So maybe it's just time to stop trying to restore something that died years ago.
  3. I'm already feeling like I'm done with RP again. I tried to come back part time, but I guess without a guild and only playing on TN occasionally I'm not going to get much interaction. Nobody seems particularly interested in Saphiara anymore, and most of my other characters have been transferred off. So I might just be done with WoW as an RP platform.
  4. The smoke drifted in the mountain air, swiftly dissipating, the currents continuing to carry on as if nothing had happened here. Riverbend was demolished, reports being that a Titan-forged relic in the hands of an unskilled barbarian was the culprit. Saphiara could believe it. The earth was smashed and buckled here, at times erupted into razor spires and strange orange crystals. "Coward." She stood and dusted herself off. The Rivermane had been the most peaceful of the tribes here. They had been the ones to forge the link between the Tauren and Drogbar. Farmers, fishermen, mystics, diplomats - they had simply wanted to live with the land in peace. And here they were, corpses, murdered by a world caring little for wishes of peace. Was the very earth insane? Was the reach of the Old Ones so pervasive than anything living beneath the ground was doomed to madness? Neltharion was the most obvious example, but all of Khaz'goroth's creations seemed touched by insanity. Drogbar, gnomes, dwarves, qiraji, nerubians... the list went on. The flesh of Azeroth was cursed. Her attention was diverted by a mental signal from Falore, flying in the mountains to the north. Another attack had been launched there, the drogbar assaulting a small village named Snowmane. She pulled out her remote and hit a series of buttons; nearby, her golem roared to life and opened up to allow her inside. She paused as she pulled herself up into the cockpit, sighing heavily at the destruction. It was starting to feel like she could never retire, because at this rate the world would have nowhere left in peace.
  5. "As do I." She reached down, picking Quel'Dalar and the remote off the ground and returning them to their proper holsters. "Perhaps one day I can return to Sanctuary, but today is not that day. I do not know peace, and my presence will do nothing but endanger others. Still... if I am needed, you may call upon me." She turned and started to walk away. "Also, please tell my sister that she knows how to reach me, assuming she wishes to talk to me once again. The letter will explain." As she spoke, the surrounding terrain seemed to warp around her, her body fading into the background. Within a few steps, Saphiara had vanished from sight. Elphorus roared, slipping into the shadows himself.
  6. Saphiara


    She was dressed in very little - a slip, really. Fortunately, save for a few trappers, some druids, and a bunch of salmon-hunting bears, Grizzly Hills was largely uninhabited. Modesty was hardly a necessity, but she maintained at least an illusion of it. She wasn't sure whose sake it was for - nobody had seen her unclothed since Elphorus, and now she wondered how comfortable she was about her own nudity. Largely academic, since there were no courtiers in her immediate future. Sitting in the flow of a cold mountain stream gave her focus she found difficult to obtain on her own. The pounding water of the fall deadened her to all other sound save her own thoughts, and the chill of the water made her intimately aware of the flow of the Light within her own body. Once upon a time, this exercise was for punishment rather than meditation, but her focus had changed since those days. With her senses deadened, Saphiara reached within to her mystical gifts; her hunter training, combined with the Light, allowed her to sense life around her. The bear was the first she sensed, being the closest and largest of beasts nearby. It was a guardian, built for strength and endurance. A short few years ago, before her life had crumbled once again in the wake of Garrosh's rise, the bear might have been the correct choice. Since losing her paladin abilities, however... she wasn't a guardian any longer - at least, not one inclined towards that style of combat. The wolf... her old self. In a lot of ways, that was still who she was - the loner who longed for the pack, the cunning hunter. However, the wolf also represented loyalty, and Saphiara no longer did. She had abandoned everything she once held dear in pursuit of... of what? What had her plan even meant to accomplish? Assuming success was even possible, she would have ended up in a new world with a doppelganger who had likely never even met Elphorus, and where history was even worse than in her own timeline. ...what had she done? The thought threatened to knock her out of her meditation, so she abandoned it for now. It would require deep examination later on, however. Her senses pushed out further. There, a stag. A masculine animal, and for all her faults and attempts to act otherwise she was still a woman in her core. So that was not her choice. Saphiara's awareness touched upon a serpent, and she paused. A beast of rebirth, shedding its skin to emerge unscathed. The bearer of knowledge, often forbidden. She had never forged a bond with a snake before, and she felt drawn to it - but something felt wrong, and she couldn't tell what it was. So she was closer, but still searching. Giant moths in a vale - no. Oxen in the fields - no. She was starting to despair, wondering if her instincts had guided her incorrectly, when a sudden realization came to her. She was searching along the ground. Her awareness extended upward instead. Overhead, a flight of eagles. Her heart warmed as one stopped its glide, beating its wings to stay aloft as it searched the ground. It turned, using a tight circle to descend safely, landing upon a rock and regarding the elf with curiosity. Saphiara opened her eyes, and the two regarded each other for a long minute. Finally, she knew she had found what she was seeking. "Greetings, Falore.
  7. For a moment, she was dumbfounded. She had expected a fight - craved it, perhaps. Had she expected to lose? Wanted it? Permission to heal did not mean she was healed. It was a process, one that she was clearly still undergoing. Her wounds were deep, and the healing was slow, by layer. At a wordless signal, Elphorus dashed around, cutting off the wolf before it could gallop off. The tiger set its stance wide, and although smaller the move had seemed to at least pause the riding beast through surprise if nothing else. "You are not the one I was angry at. You never were - you, or anyone else I attacked." She paused, the welling emotions accidentally realized threatening to overwhelm her. Unfortunately, she didn't have a helm to hide behind. "Death follows me like a close companion - and yet, I am unable to embrace it. Imagine wishing to receive the ultimate punishment for your crimes and being unable to receive it. That was the curse I felt." She drew her sword and tossed it on the ground, followed shortly after by the deactivated remote with which she had planned to take control of Vilmah's mechanical arm. "I... am not well. I am seeking help, and healing, but I am not whole yet. I beg your forgiveness, but I am not worthy to receive it yet." She closed her eyes, reaching into her pack and pulling out a small bundle of letters. She had written them weeks ago, but until now had been unable to post them. "Please, deliver these to those I harmed. I cannot bring myself to do it in person."
  8. "Kill you?" Saphiara scoffed. "I had no interest in killing you. My purpose was to punish you. I wanted you to feel the same pain I felt, that those under my command felt. YOU abandoned US... or did you forget that? Clearly you have not learned the lesson in the slightest." With the warrior dismounted, the huntress was on edge. The Light had given much of her strength back, but she was still weaker than the work. A conflict would rely on her cunning and skill. Elphorus, for his part, shifted slightly, ready to charge in if called upon.
  9. "The same." She stepped off the wall, landing lightly on her feet at ground level. Elphorus returned to her side, wary but peaceful. She held up her hands, slowly sheathing her blade at her back. Her arms went back to sides - again, slowly - but hardly without weapons at her ready. Her armor was heavily modified. "It is clear that you are not here to hunt me. A truce, then? At least for these few moments. I wish you no harm." She sat on a large chunk of debris nearby, ready to leap up at a moment's notice. She didn't expect to need to, however. She suspected the orcess's curiosity outweighed her need to pursue justice. "I understand that the war I inadvertently started continues to rage between the Grim and Sanctuary. Have there been casualties?"
  10. Vilmah. One of the least subtle members of a traditionally unsubtle organization. Perhaps she was simply serving as a set of eyes to search over a large area, but that would require Sanctuary to even know she was present in Azsuna, much less the Broken Isles. No, the odds were much better this was simply a coincidence. Still, better to be cautious than captured. She prepped a special grenade just in case things turned sour. "It would be a tiger." She stepped up on top of the ruined wall. With the sun behind her, the height, an ally, and the ability to switch to her bow if needed, she had a definite advantage. Between the glare and her newly reddened hair, she might not be recognizable. The sword might give her away though. "Vilmah Bloodborne. I will admit that you are rather low on the list of people I expected to encounter."
  11. The ruins of Azsuna were a place of palpable sadness, especially for her people. The weight of history was heavy here, a reminder of the fact that her ancestors had nearly destroyed the world, and of the price others had paid attempting to stop it. An entire city of ghosts, trapped reliving their final days in an endless cycle of misery. She wondered if there was a way to release them from their torment. For now, she contented herself with hunting naga. Her most recent foe collapsed under Elphorus's weight, its scales ripped by the tiger's razor sharp claws. She took the opportunity for a breath to recover, glancing around the area for any naga attempting to ambush her. She froze at the sound of a pebble being kicked, ducking behind a collapsed wall and signaling Elphorus to slip into the shadows. It was a moment before she realized that a naga couldn't kick anything - there was someone else here. She closed her eyes, allowing her perceptions to slip into Elphorus's, seeing the world through his eyes. It left her body vulnerable, but the area should have been cleared of enemies for long enough to scout. The tiger slinked into the ruins, sniffing the air to track his prey. There! It slinked closer, until with a rush of alarm Saphiara pulled him back and returned her sight to her own eyes. She took her sword in hand, hoping that the presence of someone wearing a purple and gold tabard was simply a coincidence and not a hunting party. Sanctuary had arrived.
  12. I remember the first time I bonded with Falore. At the time, I was still a neophyte huntress being trained by a man for whom I had foolishly fallen. When he taught me the magic, however, showed me how to open my mind to the beast and prove my worthiness as a companion, I felt wonderment as I had not known for ages. Even now, experienced in the craft of beastlore, I find it hard to describe the pure primal sensation. It is what separates us from the druids - they can become beasts in shape, but that is poor mimicry of a true beastmaster. The worgen are proof of that folly. In the past few days, I have come to realize that Falore - my sense of self - is not bound to the form of a wolf, any more than it is bound to the form of a rock or a tree. Falore is no more static or solid than I - both of us are capable of growth and change. Falore's wolf form died, and with it a piece of me died as well; I have now realized that her death liberated me, and her as well. The spirit of Falore - my spirit - is free to take whatever shape pleases it. There is no trapping a spirit. Whatever instincts guide me - perhaps the Light, perhaps something primal, or perhaps it is simply a matter of my own whims - have led me to the Grizzly Hills. I feel that Falore awaits me inside that ancient forest, simply waiting to be rediscovered and unleashed. I am excited to see what form she takes. *Sketches are made of a belt-mounted grappling system.*
  13. Saphiara


    "Whatcha want, toots?" The goblin tied an apron around Saphiara's neck, and suddenly she felt apprehension fall over her like a net. "Are you certain you are certified to do this?" The vast majority of the goblin's head was smoothly bald, with only a topknot present to speak of any hair at all. "Course I am. There's my licence right there." The huntress leaned in towards the mirror, where a small card was taped against the glass. Pulik Swiftsnip. Kezan School of Professional Coiffasseures. Certification Expires 1/1/28. Glued to the card was a small picture of a goblin - who could or could not be the one standing behind her, she couldn't tell - sporting a hairstyle that could only be described as "pink caltrop". "Your licence has expired." The urge to run was rising. "Hey, listen toots. You try living in an endless crumbling void and tell me how easy it is to take your qualifying exams." A pair of scissors snipped menacingly close to her eartip, and suddenly Saphiara felt regret at choosing Area 52 for her hair salon. Perhaps choosing Undercity and its likely result of murder at the hands of a wandering Grim would have been safer. "Now, whatcha want? I ain't got all day, there's a whole line of clients to serve." She bit back the retort that she HAD lived in a crumbling void - this very one, at that - and glanced over at the only other client, a gnome wearing a full containment suit that she wasn't entirely certain could come off. "A coloration. And a styling. Something... fun." She had been wearing a wig while traveling around Azeroth of late, hoping the black hair would throw off any pursuers searching for a blonde. A wig was becoming impractical, however. She had always worn her hair for work, not for style. Typically it was cut short, to fit in a helm or tied up into a tail to remain out of the way. After her run through the Wilds, however... she wanted it free to fly. "Can do. Just sit back and let me do my magic!" As the sound of crackling electricity hummed into life, Saphiara closed her eyes and tried very hard to retreat within herself. === The Next Day "Feel better?" Zidormi strode up the rise, standing next to Saphiara and gazing down at the ancient forest beneath them. The Grizzly Hills, one of the most primal places remaining on Azeroth. Of course, the war between the Horde, Alliance, and Scourge had left its mark here, not to mention the Iron Dwarves and the trolls. And the worgen. And the furbolgs corrupted by an Old God. She had forgotten how potently dangerous this place was during the Northrend campaign. The land seemed to have started healing, but the druids were starting to whisper that something within the Emerald Dream was stirring here. The redheaded huntress blinked as she released the farsight technique and gave her attention to her dragon companion. For once, the Bronze was in the dark. "I assume you wonder what brought me here?" "Yes. Curiosity more than concern. You seem to have taken charge of your own healing, which is a development I can only approve of." "Before her death, Falore represented myself in the pantheon of my companions. The wolf - a loner, dogged, intuitive. Fitting, perhaps. I feel a change has come over me, however. My instincts have brought me here, to Northrend. This campaign was where I grew into myself. This is where I began the transformation to what I am today, even if that road was much longer than I imagined." Saphiara swept her hand in an arc before them. "Somewhere out there, living in the trees of this land, is my new Falore - my new sense of self. I intend to find her once again."
  14. I cannot remember the last time I ran with the wind in my hair. Obviously, I have, and frequently - but always to something, or from something. This was different, done for the pure joy of the act. Krasarang is still not a secure location, despite the decimation of both Mogu and Saurok forces, not to mention the defeat of the Sha of Despair. I thought of none of those, however. I felt carefree. I was allowed to liberate my body and mind, trusting my instincts to keep me safe from harm. I am starting to understand the gift A'dal granted me. For too long, I have served as my own jailer. As a child, it was made clear that my life was owed solely to my duty - duty to the royal family, duty to Quel'Thalas, duty to the Alliance. My life was not my own, sold thousands of years before my birth by ancestors whose names are lost to history, to entities that no longer even exist. That lesson was taken to heart, pounded into me through physical and emotional abuse. I do not blame my parents. They were victims as well, as were their parents before them, down through the generations. With the Prince's death at the Sunwell, I was liberated. I owed fealty to none save myself. The prison door had been thrown open, the key tossed away - and I remained in my cell. It was safe there, playing the dutiful soldier. I would not have to think for myself, or at least I could claim my duty as justifications for my actions. It makes sense - if my will is not my own, voluntarily or not, I do not have to extend myself. I am safe to reject the attention of others. I am able to deny my own desires. The perfect self-created foil. Newly liberated, I am free to choose my own path. I have not yet decided what that path is. There, too, is freedom. I am free to simply be for a while. I have a long life before me, should a demon not take my life in the coming campaign. Time will determine that, along with my skill and a bit of luck. We shall see. For today, however, I will run through the trees with a tiger by my side. *Below this entry are a few crude sketches of what appear to be gauntlet- and shoulder-mounted launchers.*
  15. Saphiara


    The root structure underfoot was treacherous, but Saphiara navigated it with ease. Her footfalls were silent, the grass and moss forming the forest floor whispering softly with her passing. Her prey was nearby - she could feel it in her heart. Truth be told, she could have completed this task hours ago, but the urge to enjoy herself had been too strong to resist. How many years had she spent now ignoring her happiness? The Krasarang Wilds were remote and unoccupied - now that the war between the Horde and Alliance had concluded, anyways - providing her with an excellent arena to test her skills. She couldn't remember the last time she allowed herself to let go even in the middle of a mission. No... she did remember. Outland. She hadn't been alone back then. She'd certainly started off as the rigid, duty-bound daughter of noble-born soldiers, but associating with a certain lowborn scoundrel scout had loosened the restraint her entire life had spent building up. She'd occupied her entire childhood being trained for adulthood. Elphorus had allowed her to be the girl she was - still was, if she had to be honest. She was well into her second century of life now, but in elven culture that barely made her an adult. The fall of Quel'Thalas had forced her generation to grow up far too quickly. A faint noise intruded upon her thoughts. Saphiara glanced around, then scrambled up a ruined wall - remains of some kind of ancient Mogu fortress, it appeared - and surveyed the shallow valley before her. === Three Days Earlier "Your first task is complete. You have forgiven yourself and been renewed in the Light. With your spirit healing, it is time to focus on more physical matters." Saphiara looked away from the ceiling in the Caverns of Time - its half-material, half-spatial nature had long mesmerized her - to watch Zidormi approach. "You are a hunter, and a hunter requires a companion." Saphiara felt a tinge of fear, deep down. "My companions abandoned me after Falore was killed." She could hardly blame them - a self-destructive mistress was unworthy of such noble loyalty as a companion gave to a hunter. "On the contrary - you abandoned them." The statement gave the elf pause. "I sought to leave this reality. Why would they follow a hunter so eager to leave them behind?" The dragon took a seat opposite Saphiara, who felt fairly certain the bench hadn't been present just a moment before. That was the way of things in the Cavern - objects had never been present and simultaneously there all along, and it was simply a matter of deciding which reality was true and which was only a possibility. The fact that Saphiara felt certain the bench wasn't always there spoke to her growing comfort with multidimensional possibility. "True in part, but not the core of the matter. As a huntress, your companions have always represented individuals with whom you have a connection. This is a truth you have always known, but do you know why this is the truth?" "Projection. I impose my will upon the animals under my command, and subconsciously imprint them with a personality related to an individual." Zidormi smiled. "True, in a way, but describing the bond in that way is like describing a rainbow as refraction of light. You apply the scientific and miss the artistry of it." The dragon stood and began walking, an unspoken request for Saphiara to follow. "Your preference for self-reliance and seclusion are not character strengths. They are self-inflicted punishments, which your heart rebels against. Your companions don't gain personalities as a technique to relate to them - they gain personalities because your heart craves the companionship your mind rejects." Saphiara stopped in her tracks, her mind racing. The two stood quietly for several long moments as the elf worked out her thoughts. "I have spent years thinking only of my final days with Elphorus. I ignored the joy I felt with him and focused only on his death." "Thus the tiger, representing him in your mind as the wolf represents you. The white owl representing your now-estranged sister. The stag of your father and the dragonhawk of your mother. Each of these companions represents a bond with an individual, your heart reaching out to cling to those memories, protecting them as your mind attempts to forsake them." === Saphiara dropped to the forest floor, the tiger a few short feet away. It would have been little effort for it to leap forward, crushing her beneath its weight and raking her with its claws. Her sword was sheathed on her back, and her armor would provide little protection should it go for her face. She had no fear. She took to her knees, haunch to heel. "Hello, Elphorus. I know that is not technically your name currently, but it will be shortly. I have been tracking you through these trees for hours now. You are the most noble of the tigers that prowl this forest." The tiger regarded her with curiosity, then yawned and sat down itself. "You are named for my husband. He was a rough soul, much like you. Ill-regarded, overlooked by those who thought themselves better than he. His was a quiet nobility, earned not through birth but by action. He exhibited a zest for life, a joy for the small things. I have watched you bound through this forest for two days now. I have seen you chase a butterfly to enjoy its color. I have seen you drink at a stream with a hare, for you were not hungry and felt no need to terrorize one smaller than you." She reached out with one hand, palm up. The tiger looked at it for a moment, then at her face, and stood once more. He approached, sliding his cheek into her hand and receiving a welcome scratch in return. His tail flicked, and he roared as if announcing his intent. This hunter was under his protection now. He had accepted her, as she had understood him. The bond was accepted. Saphiara smiled and rose to her feet. "Thank you, Elphorus. Perhaps a run to celebrate? This looks like a particularly enjoyable stretch of ground." The tiger roared once more, and together the pair bound into the trees, each taking a path forward that occasionally separated them to avoid obstacles, but always brought them together again.