Fallon's Initiation (EVENT)
You find yourself in a line along with the cowled forms of your fellow clan members. Though the Ritual is very much the same from city to city there is a member of the Order of the Rose at the head of the hallway to answer any questions someone might have and to quietly explain to those that have never been to a Ritual, save their own, what is expected of them as an established member.
- Before the Ritual begins everyone is given a hooded black robe to wear symbolizing the equality of all Anantya. Once you have reached the entrance to the chamber you will find it guarded by the Order of the Hunt. You must pull back your hood to show yourself to the guardian before you are allowed to enter. Once you've been granted access please pull your hood back up. -
Mai stands in the doorway to the Initiation Chamber. Her expression is uncharacteristically stern as she lifts her white eyes to challenge the first in line requesting entrance into the room. The plain black robe seems to swallow the small elder in its folds but she remains fierce and watchful.
The figure in front of her pulls back their robe and reveals their face. Mai nods once and raises the thick crystal phial that she has been holding. Tilting its blood red contents onto her thumb, she then presses this to the person's forehead. Once she has marked the entrant, Mai quietly speaks.
"You are Anantya and you are welcome."Â?
She then moves aside to allow them to pass into the room before standing in front of the next person in line.
Everyone will file around in the room clockwise until the group forms a full circle.
NOTE: For the purpose of your entrance you may assume that Mai greets you and allows you to pass.
Well, a few things were different, though to an Unspeakable, this change was simply another part of the strange pattern of the catacombs. For example, they knew to leave anything left behind in the tunnels alone, at least until the initiate had made their exit. Of course they would know when their domain was clear, through their own unique means, just as they always knew when there was another in their midst.
For the most part, though, their role in this ceremony could be considered mundane. Some lit the torches; others guarded the normally forbidden entrances should anyone wander astray of their designated path. One made the knife and chalice ready. Such tasks were done seamlessly and it was doubtful they would need to make their presence known for the moment, but still they lurked, silent in the darkness.
“Trade with me; mine’s too short.”
Thaddeus, of course, already had his robe on, though he had not yet pulled up the hood, but Palmer reasoned that his friend would of course want everyone to look proper.
On the other hand, he suspected Thaddeus might have –slept- in that robe if Alfarinn would allow it. He suppressed a snort at the thought; who knew what sort of kinky things the two blondes got up to after all. In any case, the Nightsman was clearly quite excited about the initiation and had been downright giddy most of the evening because of it.
Not that he would say as much to Thaddeus’s face, of course.
Palmer had been initiated in Charleston, so he had to admit that it would be interesting to see how they did things in Nachton. While the essentials were the same in each location, each city had their own little quirks to make the experience unique. As he recalled, in Charleston there had been less whispering and more…well more Blaine of course. The typically quiet and broody nightsman seemed to come out of his shell at these ceremonies and get damn near boisterous.
-Lord- was that an after party. Good times.
In any case, here it seemed to be a bit more serious. Hence the whispering, which Palmer wasn’t sure was required but seemed like the thing to do as the pair made their way through the cathedral entrance to the catacombs.
“You’re not any taller than I am!”
Okay, this was not exactly true, but he had the better posture and reasoned they at least looked the same. The point, in Thaddeus’s mind, was that Palmer certainly had some nerve. Then he looked down and saw that the robe really was too short and gave a long suffering sigh, shrugging his robe off and handing it over without a word. He then made a great production of ensuring that his shirt wasn’t bunchy and the sleeves rested just so at his wrists before taking Palmer’s robe and putting it on.
He hadn’t arrived early for nothing, after all.
The two men were shortly on the move again once wardrobes were properly taken care of, Thaddeus leading the way through the tunnels and pointing out interesting landmarks in a hushed voice to Palmer, who he would admit seemed less than entranced.
Thaddeus did nothing, however, to curb his own enthusiasm. He enjoyed initiations, the ceremonies of his clan, reflecting on the past and on the future of Anantya in the darkest catacombs…
Well, this part was actually fairly well lit for being underground, but his point still stood.
They made their way to the initiation chamber, where a black clad clansman who could only be Mai stood sentinel. Thaddeus pulled back his hood and nodded for Palmer to do the same, letting his eyes do his smiling at Mai and keeping his expression solemn as she marked him.
The ancient blood seemed to sink into his skin, and while Thaddeus had never believed he had much in the way of a creative imagination, he could almost feel a tingling where Mai’s thumb had pressed against his skin. All thoughts of playful bickering with Palmer were forgotten as he stepped inside the chamber; that mark had a way of setting the tone.
You are Anantya, and you are welcome.
How many had heard those same words, spoken in different voices and in different lands? Thaddeus felt it was a comforting thought, simply knowing that everyone in this chamber had shared the same experience. He wondered how Fallon was feeling about all this; he could recall being nervous at the unusual ritual, and excited, and overwhelmed…but mostly it was a day of great happiness for him, in a period of his life that was often fraught with sadness, with Emma’s death and his own private homesickness all too near.
It had been a long time since she'd been here, and before entering the Cathedral she tipped her head back, one slender hand holding her hood in place, and took a good look at the backdrop of the building and the trees against the night sky. This wasn't England, but it was still Home.
She made her way alone to the catacombs, missing Dayle and wistfully wishing her twin were here. At the door she showed her face and felt the Elder's thumb on her forehead, then the cool wetness in its place.
As she done time and again, Ysabel filed into the room to stand next to the robed figure who'd arrived just before her. The initiation was no different where she was from, and as a member of the Order of the Rose she was more than familiar with it. That didn't stop her from feeling the peculiar excitement of performing the ritual, however. It was always the same, and always gave her goosebumps.
She kept her head down, bowed in solemnity and modesty, and spent the next few moments as she had been taught, reflecting on the meaning of her Clan and its long-lived traditions.
She silently stepped into the line of hooded clan mates feeling the odd excitement begin to build. It was the beginning of a new time in someone's life and the gaining of a new sister. Fresh starts were rare things for people who lived for centuries and that alone was exciting to watch and be a small part of.
But the ceremony itself and the coming together of the clan was special and always magical. Claire's ponderings left her remembering her own initiation and the ones she had witnessed since that time. There had been many but not nearly so much as one might believe; vampires, in her observation, were not generally quick to make more of their own, and Anantya perhaps least of all. It was truly a special event when the clan chose to open its arms to another wandering soul.
It seemed mere moments after she stepped in line that she was next to stand in front of the guardian of the circle. Claire stepped forward as the person in front of her was admitted and pulled back her hood. She watched Mai silently and leaned down slightly as the petite elder placed a drop of the sacred liquid on her forehead.
Nodding once in acknowledgement, she replaced her hood and moved carefully into the room. She let one hand slid lightly along the cool wall as she made her way around the circle to her place. It helped her feel more a part of the moment to reach out and touch. It cemented her into place.
Once Claire stood next to the others in the room, she turned her gaze to the floor and contemplated the complex design of the clan mark formed from various tiles on the floor. It was a very accurate symbol of Anantya in her opinion. Many different people from many different times and places who came together and formed a family and were willing to grow and support one another and the whole of the clan.
Besides...what did she need to be nervous about? Her arm was wrapped around Cyrus', and though they were both cloaked in the hooded Anantya garments, Fallon could see where they were going. They were on their way to her initiation, into Anantya. The clan was meeting, as far as she knew all of them were meeting, to bring her into the fold.
And Cyrus would be with her, at least up to the very end. She didn't know too much about what was to happen, but she knew she could do this. She wanted to do this. It was what she had been hoping for these past several months. Anantya would become her family, and she would become even a larger part of something. Her world would officially become part of Cyrus', and Cyrus her's.
The two of them walked into the Cathedral, and the similarity between marriage, and what she was about to embark on struck her. Se almost mentioned it to Cyrus, but chickened out at the last minute. Things with the two of them couldn't be better, and she didn't want to say anything that might cause him to freak, or rethink things.
When they got to the alter they found the entrance to the catacombs, through an arched doorway. For a few seconds Fallon just stood there, and then she turned and almost threw herself into Cyrus' arms, hugging him tightly.
"This is it, isn't it? Before we're together again, I'll be part of Anantya. We'll really be a part of each other then, won't we? A part of the same clan, the same family."
She stopped talking because if she didn't she was afraid she would fall apart. She needed to be strong. She could be strong, she had before, and with less reason.
"It will be ok and you are already part of my family." He told her seriously before wrapping his arms around her robe clad form and kissing her hotly. The distraction worked for a moment and then he had to carry out his duties at hand. Pulling back he placed one small kiss upon her forehead before reaching for the blindfold.
Sheilding her eyes with the black cloth he quietly held her hand while he waited for admittance from the Unspeakable.
Under her robe she'd worn a simple long black dress, full skirted with a snug button up bodice. A kind of timeless design. The fact that it could be from so many eras seemed fitting to her for such a gathering. Her feet made no sound on the stones in the soft black ballet style slippers she'd worn.
The walk from the Manor to the Cathedral had been difficult. It was said all were welcome but that was still a hard thing for her to come to terms with, it was such a different way of thinking than she'd been raised in. Stopping behind the growing line, she pushed her thick braid over her shoulder to dissapear down her back. Now nothing showed to identify her except the lower bit of her face visible under the hood.
In her rooms she'd seen herself in a mirror before putting on the robe and had almost laughed at her reflection. The almost puritanical look was a far cry from her normal fashionista style. In fact she'd mused to Louis that she was dressed more for a funeral than a celebration. Standing now in the dim catacombs it seemed much more of a wise choice than it had then.
Stopping before the small robed figure who could only be the Elder Asahi, Amby bowed down to give her easy access to place the mark upon her forehead. The words she spoke sent chills down her spine and went right to the young girl's core. "You are Anantya and you are welcome.." How very true that phrase was, and how much she had come to rely on that since comming here almost a year ago. Blinking back an unexpected wetness from her eyes she slipped into the chambers and found an empty place to stand beside those who had arrived before her.
Without the aid, it had taken him longer than usual to cross to the cathedral and find his way down to the Initiation Chamber. Still he’d arrived, and that was important. It was a momentous occasion and one he would hate to miss if he could at all help it.
Lowering his hood, and his head slightly he felt the elder’s thumb press onto his forehead. He always found the words reassuring, he had a home and a family of sorts regardless of where he was. Faintly inclining his head he replaced the black hood and took his place in the circle.
Glancing down his attention was caught by a piece of pressed paper, now that he was focused on it, Sorin noticed the faint smell of herbs and acid that marked the homemade paper his child used. Indeed, Claire's neat script spelled out a short note.
Fallon's Initiation is tonight. Your robe is hanging up downstairs.
Had it been anyone else Sorin might have been upset at her audacity, but she knew him and he would admit because her ways where non threatening and unobtrusive that she was helpful to him. If she had not thought to remind him he might have missed this little unimportant event. It would not be something that troubled him but it would be better to take the small amount of time necessary to go and play dress up with the others.
Soon enough he was sauntering towards the queue with the rest of his clan his hood down while he waited. Look upon your betters and despair! Or at least know that he was present. As he reached the door, he pulled up his hood, rolling his eyes at the whole silly drama.
Mai's serious stare caused him to stand a tad straighter, to look a bit more diligent. Annoying woman, how dare she look at him that way! As if he were being flippant and that it was somehow unbecoming. He reached his place in the circle looking the part of a vigilant respectful Anantya awed by the ceremony they were about to witness, while occasionally glaring daggers at the tiny Huntsman's back.
The moment was upon them; the Unspeakable knew without so much as glancing around that this was so. He gave a slight nod to the Anantya lingering near the entrance to answer questions and help clanmates find their way to the chamber, and waited until she was deep in the tunnels before turning to the initiate and her companion.
He gave his fellow huntsman a much deeper nod, the gravity of the situation not at all lost on him, and turned, gliding silently down the tunnels and assuming the pair would follow.
Thankfull that his kitten could not see everything this first time down here in the dark dank tunnels. Walking proudly with his fledgeling beside him, he did not rush, but followed at a pace that was easy for Fallon to navigate while blind.
He knew they would need to seperate soon so he squeezed her hand comfortingly.
After they had walked a bit, Cyrus squeezed her hand, and they stopped. Fallon tried to listen, to see if she could hear anything, but the only sound that seemed to obliterate all others, was the pounding of her heart.
Letting go of his arm with her other hand, she stood tall, and rubbed her remaining hand over his arm as she took a deep breath, and waited.
As she frequently did, she'd lost track of time while working out - it wasn't until she saw hooded figures moving across the grounds in the mirrors that she'd realized just HOW late it was. Practically running through the shower, she tied her hair back and tossed on the robe - other clothes would be a waste of time, anyway, and ran her ass to the show.
Entering the catacombs, she discovered that she was, indeed, late-ish. The last person in line had already been admitted, but at least Elder Mai was still here. Stopping before the Elder, she quickly lowered her hood and heard the words from this side for the first time...which were kind of creepy, actually. To think of the countless times that Mai had heard them was somewhat daunting, so she decided not to. Instead, she pondered how many people were offed by not meeting the requirement to come through the door. Probably not too many these days...oops, put the fucking hood back on. There we go.
Remembering to go clockwise into the room (did they go counter-clockwise South of the Equator?), she took her place at the end of the line, almost sealing the circle. This was gonna be a fucking TRIP. Already it was way more formal than it was out West...no one was talking, though there might be an occasional murmur...but not from Dawn. Since she'd showed alone, she didn't know who anyone else was! Damn robes. Fidgeting in her place, she waited, quietly rustling, for the ceremony to begin in earnest.
Morrigan frowned slightly in thought; Sorin had also approved Fallon's joining Anantya. The Elder of the Rose expected opposition from the Elder of the Night, especially since she believed him to be the last Elder spoken to. Petty perhaps but when had Sorin ever been anything else? For reasons of his own that she could not begin to decipher at this time, the Roman decided to allow the teacher in front of her entrance.
And that led them to this moment; here deep under the earth, in a circle of immortal beings, it was difficult to hide behind a mask. Her voice was quiet but held the ability to command.
""You have entered into an immortal brotherhood that has spanned the ages. We have seen entire civilizations rise and fall and yet we remain constant and strong. We embrace our differences, honor our brothers and sisters, protect each other, and strive to grow stronger for the sake of our clan. Will you abide by our laws, lend us your strengths, and respect your brethren?"
Now kneeling, she listened as the ceremony began, and focused on every word. It briefly crossed her mind to wonder, just how many times Morrigan had recited these words, and how many of the other Anantya had gone through this ritual here, in Nachton.
"Yes, I will abide by the laws, lend you my strengths, and respect all my Anantya brethren."
Fallon thought she felt Cyrus nearby, but she dared not look. Because of the lighting in the chamber, the only person Fallon could actually see, was Morrigan. But she had to assume Sorin, and Mai were also present. Fallon felt extremely privileged to be participating in this ceremony with them all.
The thought of new blood was a strong reminder of what was to come, and while The Unspeakable was not accustomed to great emotion, he felt a flicker of something he recognized as anticipation. Anticipation for the rich scent of blood.
It was almost time.
Gently releasing it, Morrigan then took the blade and neatly cut her own palm. Handing the dagger to the Unspeakable who was attending, she held her hand over the chalice as well. She watched her blood drip into the chalice as it had many times before. Once the cut began to heal and the blood slowed to a trickle, she removed her hand and watched as the attendant took the dagger and cup to the next person in the circle.
((OOC: In an effort to continue the story I'm assuming Fallon is allowing us to cut her hand. If this is in error then we can edit. ))
/ooc Feel free to assume The Unspeakable approaches you and respond accordingly.
A rather squirmy someone, at that. He couldn’t so much as venture a guess as to who this person might be; for that matter, he had only the vaguest ideas on any of their identities, which was probably just as well.
The Unspeakable’s entrance, followed shortly thereafter by Fallon and a companion Thaddeus would imagine was Cyrus, but for all he knew could be someone else, quieted his curiosity. He watched as the blindfold was removed, trying to remember if he had been afraid at that point, walking blindly through the hallways, or that moment of anticipation as the blindfold was lifted and he got his first glimpse of the chamber. He seemed to remember being more excited at that point than nervous, though time may have drowned the memory.
He gave an inward smile when Fallon answered, feeling that flood of familial pride such ceremonies tended to bring about. People did not get to this point if they weren’t ready to say the words, and later drink the blood; there was no suspense here, but even so not everyone managed to let their voice carry in the chamber. He wondered if the robes served another purpose, at that; the situation was enough for a person to get a bit on the emotional side.
Of course, Thaddeus himself was outwardly the picture of calm dignity as the Unspeakable approached, offering him the blade. He wrapped his fingers around the hilt and took it slowly and carefully, relishing the brief moment he would have with the ancient dagger. His palm tingled with ghosted sensation; countless cuts felt through his sensing on his skin, countless hands holding the blade just as he did now. He held out his left hand over the chalice, feeling such occasions called for his dominant hand, and pulled the blade neatly across his palm, turning it to one side to let the blood flow freely until the wound closed.
Turning the dagger around, he offered it hilt first to the Unspeakable before letting his hand fall back to his side.