By: Anoshia Posted on: December 30, 2006
The name by which they call themselves is as simple as it appears. Deathspeakers. Those who speak to the dead. Their calling necessitates no elaboration or garishness, and the name stands merely as a source of identification for the select few who chose to spend a lifetime in servitude to the art. Their stories, though one might wager that they would compete with even the most fluent bard's tale, are rarely heard and kept to secrets, passed down only to those who also seek to advocate the souls.
This account, although seemingly concise, was accounted with the hope of shedding light upon the last moments spent with one lost in the Deathlord's mists...
Today the elders have afforded me witness to a session of sorts, and much to my excitement, our subject be one of not of mortal flesh. Never did I, a mere Disciple, imagine that I would so soon come in contact with one of the Lord's souls. Four of the Qui'anar accompanied me, and guiding us was a man I had never met. His name is Nazoul, though he is referred to as the Keeper. When he speaks, his voice is like crushed parchment, or the sound of a vulture's talons upon stone. I will spare you the details of our initial meeting, though it should be noted that not once has he met my glance, as if something unseen holds his gaze.
The soul was found within the mists. Lo, how confusing the mists are! I had to keep close to the ends of my teacher's robes, for I feared I would wander into the darkness and never find my way out. There were others too, drifting in the distant fogs, all lost. These beings have not passed onto their final place of rest. No, they are stuck in a state of transition between the realm of the living and the halls of Thoth. All of this was explained to me as we passed fading forms of men and women alike, all differing in age and appearance. Some of them stared at me with impassiveness, while others cried out at random, obsessed with mortality and unable to accept their death. This is the Deathspeaker's calling, counseling those lost and puzzled by the events that brought them to rest in Thoth's haze.
We took slowly to the soul's side, and I watched eagerly as it turned its ethereal form around and gazed at us. He was male, and his battered and bruised head barely reached the height of my shoulder. Wisps of tears trickled down his ghostly cheeks, seeping from eyes aglow with soft green light. When I looked further, I could see that the boy's leg was also badly mangled, though this did not hinder him as he hovered ever so slightly above the hazy floor.
At first it appeared that the soul would only show us abrasiveness, staring angrily at the elders as he clenched his small fists and screamed agonizingly into the darkness. I could barely distinguish his words as he continued to mumble something involving ponies and his father, though most of his hoarse voice was muffled by wrenching sobs. One of our party, an atavian woman, stepped forward and approached the boy, crouching down at his side and extending her palm towards him. For awhile, she simply listened as the boy attempted to explain himself between chokes and blubbers, and after much time had passed, the two conversed in hush voices. The boy nodded his head and the woman once more joined us, saying that we would depart shortly as it was the child's bedtime.
Once we had ventured several paces from the soul, the woman elaborated on the details of the child's story. He had died in the field of his father's land, crushed brutally by a horse. Against his father's wishes, the boy took to the stables at night, wishing to ride the gypsy's pony that had been given to him upon his twelfth birthday. In his rush, he startled a one of the several golden chargers resting nearby, and in a horrible moment of pain, the horse trampled him to death. The boy, however, was unable to grasp that he had died, and the woman explained that he now wandered, desperately searching for his pony and existing in fear of his father's wrath.
It was only a matter of moments before the soul child 'awoke' once more as his concept of time and time spent in sleep was apparently thwarted by his state of confusion. Again we approached him, only this time the woman stood before him, taking his hand and speaking to him in a stern, solid voice. For a long while she spoke of the event, gesturing to the child's bruises and bumps. She asked him what he knew of the Deathlord, and if he suspected anything of his current state. Finally, the boy began to shiver as his eyes widened, and I knew he had come to realize what horror has been beseeched upon him. The woman knelt, taking the ethereal child into her arms in an attempt to hold him, though with a contented sigh, the boy passed through her, vanishing from our sight.
As he had finally come to accept and acknowledge his death, she explained, the boy was able to pass on and be welcomed into the halls of Thoth. His presence was no longer bound to the mists, and he would soon meet his final abode of rest alongside and in servitude to our Lord. We retreated from the spot, leaving behind a vacant cloud of haze that carried no trace of the once tormented inhabitant.
In His name,
A humble Disciple of Death