[The transcript of the event has been edited: everything that not directly relates to the ritual has been removed. Some phrasing has been redacted for clarity.]
[Invitation delivered by groffel] "On 18 Ylaaren [Friday 22 Nov] Cirerey will lead a ceremony in the Secret Garden [at 19:00 GMT]. Yenida will offer all her mementos of Llarnia as a sacrifice to Xiosia, in the hope that the Godess will reveal to her whether her beloved is still alive or not. Only close friends are invited, to join in prayer and bear witness."
Prelude: The gathering, introduction to the ritual
(20:07:29) Venorel says: Greetings sister (20:07:42) Yenida is wearing a black penitential robe, her hair hanging loose. Her eyes are red-rimmed, as she cried all day. She seems broken and frail. (20:08:02) Damola gives Yenida a soft hug -- looks with compassion. (20:08:32) Cirerey says: Be blessed in the company of those who care for you, sister. (20:08:49) Yenida hugs damola, staying in the embrace a little while (20:09:23) Yenida looks around, greeting everyone with a weak smile. (20:10:13) Yenida hugs venorel, and nods. "It's thanks to you that we are here. Thank you" (20:10:28) Cirerey looks as sympathetic as a klyros' reptile face can. (20:10:42) Venorel returns the embrace, "And happy I am to be of aid at this time."" (20:11:04) Yenida says: "Thank you Cirerey, that you can stand by us in our hour of need..." (20:11:51) Yenida says softly: "I had hoped that Haraun would have been here... Llarnia had her special way with Enkis. She was fond of them. No tail was safe... Ah, she was always so playful... Wherever she came, something was bound to happen... And she always got away with it..." (20:12:28) Yenida falls silent (20:12:29) Cirerey says: I am sorry I could not have married the two of you. To serve the wounded is a priviledge. I thank you for allowing me to serve my goddess. (20:12:56) Cirerey says: I know that is of no comfort to you. (20:13:04) Venorel say encouragingly, "Do not speak of her of the past Yen, she may be still pulling enki tails as we speak." (20:13:53) Damola nods vigorously "I believe she is alive unless I know otherwise." (20:14:13) Yenida gives a weak smile (20:14:19) Yenida speaks softly: "Thank you all for coming here, to join me in prayer, and to bear witness." (20:14:41) Damola puts her left arm around Yenida for a moment (20:14:44) Venorel says: It is my priviledge to share this time. (20:15:00) Yenida continues hesitantly: "As I told some of you already..." She is hardly hearable. "I know for some time yet that Llarnia must be dead. It's not like her to disappear out my life without a single word... Something terrible... the worst... must have happened..." (20:16:07) Yenida says: "I have asked every merchant, every traveler near the winch. To no avail, no one has any news..." (20:16:19) Venorel says: In sooth there could be something stopping her return which does not mean her demise. (20:16:36) Yenida shakes her head... (20:16:48) Cirerey says: News travels slowly between the levels. (20:16:49) Damola says: "There may be reasons for her not being able to contact you, Yenida." (20:17:21) Cirerey says: But what the news is we cannot know until we recieve it. (20:17:46) Venorel says: A rising river, impassable snowy pass. Who knows what barriers the Gods may have placed before her? (20:17:49) Damola nods "Its best to ask Xiosia, as we cannot know." (20:17:54) Yenida hugs moja. "Good friend, thank you for coming" (20:18:04) Moja shyly greets all, and put her right hand on Yenida's left sholder, greeting her again. (20:18:21) Cirerey says: It is a pleasure to see you again Miss Moja (20:19:00) Moja doesn't know what to say as she didn't mean to interrupt anything which was being told. (20:19:22) Yenida shakes her head again. "Whatever the barrier, Llarnia would have found a way..." (20:19:40) Yenida [sighs]: "And every place [where I come] brings back to me memories of Llarnia... The Pool of Stealth, where we often went to swim... [On the marketplace, the smell of seaweed] reminds me of the scent of her hair... Each time I visit the Plaza, Harnquist, Kada-El's... My life consists but of bittersweet memories... And [every] time I wonder... without hope anymore, but still I do..." (20:19:44) Venorel frowns seeing Yenida is convinced of the worse (20:20:57) Yenida says: "This uncertainty is eating me alive... I can't bear it anymore... It is therefore that we are gathering here, and that I have sought the counsel of Cirerey... I have asked him to conduct a ceremony... one that will end that uncertainty..." (20:21:24) Damola, looking sad, nods "It's no use to speculate about her." (20:21:49) Venorel says: Yes time can heal the pain of her not with you yet the uncertainty can be wearying as well. (20:21:59) Cirerey says: Just tell me when you are ready to begin. I am at your service. (20:22:07) Moja sadly, worried and obviously unsure, nods. (20:22:34) Yenida says: "For all those memories... I would give them up gladly, trade them in a thousand times, if she only came back..." (20:23:07) Yenida says: "Therefor, I will offer all my mementos, all my dearest memories of Llarnia, to the Godess... And I ask the Mother to give me a sign, so that I know whether I will ever see Llarnia again, or whether she is dead... There can't be any other possibility..." (20:23:48) Damola is very silent now… (20:24:04) Venorel says: I could think of others, Yenida so let us open our minds to the signs the Gods may give. (20:25:09) Moja is silent too. And she stares at the tree. Or at the wall behind. Worried and trying to smile a little. (20:25:17) Yenida looks at Venorel, and shakes her head. "Not with Llarnia... if she lives, she will find me" (20:25:43) Yenida's voice grows a little stronger, showing some resolve. "If I am to see her again, I will wait for her, till the end of my days if need be. If I'm not, I will mourn, and maybe, in the end, I can move on with my life..."
[the group waits for Narriah, daughter of Sulaika, to arrive, and discusses the plight of Sulaika, Yenida's soulmate, currently being kept prisoner by Kull. Narriah arrives accompanied by Lace.]
(20:48:03) Yenida hugs Narriah tightly. "Still no news about your mom?" (20:48:46) Yenida nods at Lace "Welcome" (20:48:48) Narriah looks ashamed down, "I am sorry Yenida." She sees the black penitential robe. Then hugs Yenida back, "No news no." She looks sad at her (20:48:55) Narriah says: I brought Lace with me (20:49:07) Yenida tries to comfort the child somewhat
The ritual: the offerings
(20:49:17) Cirerey says: Welcome to Xiosia's garden. (20:49:40) Cirerey says: Hello Narriah. I remember you. (20:49:51) Narriah says: What is wrong Yenida? *she looks in her face* You seem to be not well either, *trying to rub Yenida's back for a moment* (20:49:59) Moja shyly greets. (20:50:11) Lace smiles a bit "i thought look after Narriah a while after Eardstapa had to leave somewhere " (20:50:30) Cirerey says: Of course when I last saw you your favorite toy was Urriro's tail. (20:50:35) Lace makes elegant light bow to all "hello " (20:52:30) Narriah nods to Yenida, then makes a shy bow to the others, "I am so sorry that I let you wait all...but so many things happened. We shall start now." (20:53:44) Cirerey says: Welcome friends to this sacred place (20:54:05) Cirerey walks to a spot in front of the tree. (20:54:28) Narriah looks shy (20:54:44) Lace listens carefully and stands nearby of Narriah observing his surroundings relaxed and cautious at sametime (20:55:49) Yenida looks at Cirerey, and gives a slight nod (20:55:54) Damola folds her hands again, praying. (20:55:59) Cirerey says: Today we are here to ask for Xiosia's favor for our friend Yenida. Her love, the beautiful Nolthrir Llarnia, has gone and cannot be located. (21:02:05) Narriah observes the people around her, then smiles at them as she sees they are friends of Yenida, worthy to trust in (21:05:40) Yenida stares to the ground before her feet (21:06:28) Cirerey says: We will perform the ritual of sacrifice. Hopefully Xiosia will see fit to answer her plea. (21:06:33) Lace has calm nonchalant look at his eyes as he listens (21:06:57) Moja stares at Cirerey and listens carefully. From time to time she also looks at Yenida. (21:07:07) Cirerey says: Sacrifice is an interesting thing. We must consider. What gift do we have that a god would value? (21:07:25) Yenida nods slowly (21:07:37) Cirerey says: Gems and gold are trivial to a god who can reshape a world. (21:08:16) Cirerey says: And While Dakku would gladly take your life it would be insulting to offer it to Xiosia. (21:08:53) Cirerey says: The answer is simple. Devotion and love. THese are the only things we have worth offering here. (21:09:43) Cirerey says: And so I ask you to feel your love for our beloved Yenida as she offers her love and devotion to Xiosia. (21:10:17) Cirerey says: THere is little ritual, and I will take care of that. The important parts come from the heart. (21:10:18) Damola looks to Yenida with deep compassion, some tears around her eyes. (21:11:00) Cirerey opens the musty old tome he is carrying and finds a page. (21:11:38) Moja close her eyes and take a deep breath, concentrating - or trying to - about what Cirerey just said. (21:11:39) Narriah wonders, what this all is about, seeming not to know yet really (21:11:59) Cirerey says: Xiosia, we are gathered here in your presence to support our beloved sister Yenida in her search for her love Llarnia. (21:12:30) Cirerey says: She offers her love to you. We beg you to answer. (21:12:31) Venorel bows her head and closes her eyes. (21:12:51) Damola folds her hands and closes her eyes as well. (21:13:26) Yenida looks at Cirerey, and then kneels as well (21:14:53) Narriah kneels down too (21:15:23) Venorel makes a small offering [Some attendants offer something personal] (21:16:34) Cirerey signals to Yenida (21:17:07) Narriah stands up too, then looks at Yenida and offers the first rat hide she ever hunted in her life (21:17:47) Yenida smiles: Thank you, Narriah (21:18:01) Narriah kneels down next to Yenida and quickly hugs her, "I am sorry my mother cant be there for you." (21:18:14) Cirerey chants hymms quietly (21:18:33) Yenida nods. "I know, and I am with her in my hearth..." (21:19:04) Lace stands slowly then walks near the offerings and place charmflower in ground (21:19:18) Narriah stands up and takes a seat in the back again (21:19:44) Yenida reaches in her bag (21:20:05) Yenida says: "Oh mother, I offer thee this unique, ancient Galkard of Ways. It was Llarnia's favorite weapon, she carried it always with her, as it is of use under water. She won it at the opening of the museum; she was the smartest and quickest of all there." (21:20:05) Yenida says "When I saw her last, she gave it to me for safe keeping. I didn't think much about it at that time... but she must have forefelt it, that this was the last time we saw each other. O why didn't she speak to me then, about her foreboding?" (21:20:59) Narriah feels tears arising and nods in agreement to this prayer (21:21:03) Venorel wipes a tear from her cheek. (21:21:05) Damola has some tears in her eyes, silently looking at Yenida. (21:21:49) Yenida removes a ring from her finger. It's a ring with a thick golden band, its center with a myriad of rubies put together to look like a rose, and etched within it: 'For love'. Yenida says "She gave this engagement ring to me on Ierefal... Dear Mother, accept this ring as a gift..." (21:21:57) Damola folds her hands and mutters "Mother, please give peace and calm to our friend Yenida." (21:22:26) Narriah sobs and glances at Xiosia, "Why cant you save her?" She whispers. She heartbreaking cries. (21:23:10) Damola approaches Narriah slowly and carefully and then offers an arm to hold her (21:23:17) Moja stares at the grass, listening. Perhaps a few tears are rolling down, to the ground, or not. Not seeable. (21:23:32) Yenida offers the wedding gown she got as a present from Elhorien. "Dear Mother Xiosia, please... I won't need it anymore..." (21:24:26) Damola shakes her head sadly (21:24:46) Narriah leans in Damola's arm and cries more, "Oh see a wedding dress she wanted to marry." (21:24:52) Cirerey continues to chant softly (21:25:08) Yenida takes the wedding ring out of her purse; it is inscribed with "You shall never walk alone", on a background pattern of seaweed and kelp intertwining... (21:25:08) Yenida cries "I have failed you, Llarnia... I should never have let you go..." (21:25:08) Yenida lacking strength, falls on her knees on the ground. The ring slips out of her hand. (21:25:38) Damola puts her arm around Narriah and mutters "It is okay to cry, Narriah." (21:26:08) Venorel's heart aches for her friend, Yenida. (21:26:13) Damola shakes her head sadly again "Yenida…" (21:26:46) Cirerey says: The love flows like water Gentle Mother, will you accept it? (21:26:50) Lace his eyes softens a lightly as he looks yenida (21:27:05) Yenida takes her diary. Her hands tremble when she leafs through it. Her vision is blurred with tears, but she knows the sections by heart. (21:27:29) Yenida's diary tells the story of how they first met, on the steps of the Crystal Den. Yenida had just had a long talk with Su... rounding up that previous chapter in her life... How Yen was sitting there, pondering all that had been said and done. And there Llarnia came, just arrived in the city... she came and simply sat there besides her... Yen was the first soul in the whole city Llarnia talked to... It must have been a sign from the gods they were destined for each other... (21:28:04) Cirerey places a shallow copper bowl on the grass and fills it with dried herbs. (21:28:29) Yenida's diary tells how they drank way too much at Kada-El's that first evening, and danced to the music of Zakena. Yen stepped on Llarnia's toes, almost keeled over... In the end they could barely walk nor talk... Zakena had a lot of trouble to get them in their rooms... How they ended up in the same bed... where nothing happened, as Yen fell asleep... (21:28:55) Narriah nods to Damola and looks over to Yenida, "Her love didnt return to her either. My mummy also not..." She feels tears running down her face (21:29:22) Yenida's diary tells how the next day that happened what bound them together... which shall remain their secret... (21:29:28) Damola looks sadly to Narriah "Oh, dear one." and just holds her softly and gently. (21:29:48) Yenida's diary tells: And the third day they were together, inseparable... they thought for forever... (21:30:09) Yenida cries bitterly. (21:30:28) Yenida says: "That was how we were... we lived and loved, as if there was no tomorrow... And as much as it hurts now, I'm glad we did it that way... that at least we have enjoyed fully the little time we had..." The diary falls on the ground. (21:30:42) Narriah listens to what Yenida says and her tears running down with compassion for her, but also thinking on her mother. (21:30:53) Damola looks to Yenida, crying silently now, but doesn´t approach her at the moment. (21:31:06) Yenida sees a scrap of paper falling out of the diary, a part of a love letter, reading "...and every night, when I kiss you to sleep and I tell you I love you... may you be reminded of all this... that you are precious, very precious indeed...". The wind blows it away. (21:31:23) Lace knows too well the pain that yenida and narriah might feel altought he isnt good showing his feelings
The ritual: the outcome
(21:31:37) Cirerey raises a hand holding a red way glyph over the bowl of dried herbs (21:32:22) Damola prays "Xiosia, let healing happen. For Yenida, for Llarnia, for Narriah." (21:32:49) Venorel agrees with Damola saying, "May it be so." (21:33:25) Narriah makes herself smaller. She gazes over to Yenida, that obviously lost the hope on waiting for her love. She shakes her head, tears running down, she tries to understand how Yenida can let her go. (21:33:58) Cirerey raises a red glyph over the bowl and drops a shower of sparks into the bowl. It begins to fill the air with fragrant smoke. (21:34:11) Damola looks to Yenida again, her face telling a story of inner conflict, but she doesn´t approach Yenida at the moment. (21:35:33) Cirerey says: Xiosia, we beeseech you. answer the plea of Yenida. Let her know if her beloved lives and if she does assist her in her journey back to Yenida. (21:35:47) Yenida lowers her head, and closes her eyes (21:36:18) Narriah deeply feels now with Yenida. She looks excausing at Damola and stands up. Walking up to sit now next to Yenida, closing her eyes too. (21:36:36) a gentle breeze blows through the garden (21:36:48) Yenida leans a bit towards Narriah (21:37:04) The breeze circles and pulls the smoke into a column (21:37:12) Narriah tries to embrace Yenida (21:37:29) Damola now approaches Yenida but holds a little distance in respect. (21:37:34) Lace says: may Xiosia guide us at her light as breeze gently in wind (21:37:56) Moja finally stops staring at the grass and looks at Xiosia tree, then at Yenida... so she stands up and silently gets a little closer to Yenida. (21:38:20) Narriah nods to Lace words and sends also a prayer to her own god Laanx quietly (21:38:24) Yenida quickly smiles at Damola, but then puts her attention back to the ritual (21:38:47) The wind suddenly intensifies, picking up the smouldering herbs from the bowl and turning them into a pillar of smoke and sparks (21:40:09) Just as suddenly as it began the wind dies out and the smoke dissapates, the fire is extinguished. (21:40:37) Cirerey sighs (21:40:59) Cirerey says: I am truly sorry Yenida. (21:41:21) Damola mutters "No… no…" (21:41:22) Yenida looks worried at Cirerey (21:41:34) Venorel looks up not understanding (21:41:49) Cirerey says: Her fire is gone. (21:42:26) Damola looks to Yenida, crying now, ready to embrace her any time. (21:42:43) Venorel closes her eyes grief for Yenida clouds her mind (21:42:44) Yenida looks as if she doesn't understand for a moment, then she realizes what Cirerey is saying (21:42:45) Moja tilts her head staring at Cirerey and still not able to do nothing, trying to say something, anything to Yenida. (21:42:59) Yenida collapses, and faints (21:43:44) Damola puts a hand on Yenida´s shoulders, offering a little comfort, crying herself. (21:44:26) Cirerey says: I wish I could change this. I had hoped I would be able to tell you that you would be beautiful brides together. (21:44:44) Venorel looks to Yenida's unconscious form and tears begin to flow from her eyes. (21:44:48) Lace raises slowly and put his hand at yenidas shoulder lightly for brief moment (21:45:22) Moja thinks she should help, somehow, then she just looks gratefully at Damola. (21:45:31) Yenida's eyes flutter a few times, when she regains consciousness (21:45:31) Lace then takes silently couple steps back (21:45:32) Cirerey turns to Xiosia (21:45:56) Damola looks to Yenida, with a saddened face "I am so sorry, Yenida." (21:46:36) Yenida cries, cries beyond control (21:46:37) Narriah listens to everything and tries to understand, then shakes her head, "Is she?" Her eyes widen in shock and her heart breaks, crying bitterly, thinking if Llarnia was in the same age as Yenida (21:46:39) Cirerey says: Thank you for your wisdom. Even when we do not hear what we wished. We remain faithful even in our despair. (21:47:20) Lace silently sits near narriah and put his hand gently at her head (21:48:22) Yenida's crying, after a while, diminishes, turns into a sobbing (21:49:11) Damola offers her left arm to hold Yenida, but not yet doing it, in respect for her feelings. (21:49:36) … but then she just holds her, not waiting any longer for Yenida to accept the comforting touch. (21:49:44) Yenida takes Damola's arm, and leans onto it (21:49:57) Cirerey says: Gather your memories Miss Yenida. For you have had a great love, something few of us will ever be blessed with. (21:50:30) Yenida nods slowly (21:50:31) Cirerey excuses himself (21:51:21) Venorel is lost for words (21:51:26) Damola just holds Yenida, not knowing what to say (21:51:26) Yenida stands up, and starts to pack silently her belongings (21:51:58) Narriah looks at Yenida, then glances over to Damola. She nods seeing she will comfort Yenida, then stares blankly at Lace. Then back to Yenida as she stands up (21:52:10) Venorel says: I am so sorry Yenida (21:52:13) Moja finally stands up and is able to get closer to Yenida, offering shyly a shy hug. (21:52:59) Venorel offers Yenida an embrace (21:55:35) Yenida smiles weakly at her friends, and then slowly walks away (21:55:56) Venorel says: Be well Yenida (21:56:10) Narriah looks sad after Yenida not knowing what to do (21:56:11) Damola looks after Yenida, tempted to follow her, but leaving her go. (21:56:31) Moja quickly writes something on a piece of parchment and passes it to the leaving Yenida. (21:56:53) Narriah gazes at Damola. "We cant leave her alone..." (21:57:06) Damola makes up her mind and follows Yenida (21:57:09) Yenida accepts the parchment absentmindedly (21:58:00) Narriah goes to Xiosia for a moment, kneeling in front of her, looking up (21:58:08) Damola walks into the way of Yenida and says "Yenida, I know, it is your sorrow, and it is yours to feel it. I have deep respect for it, but know I am there for you, we are there for you. Any time you need." (21:58:10) [Tell] Moja tells you: On that piece of parchment you can read "I don't know what to do. You'll find me if you need to talk. Otherwise, I'll soon look for you, anyway. Moja" (21:58:38) Damola says: "If you want to be alone with your feelings, I will leave you go now, but know, we are there. You have friends." (21:59:40) Yenida nods at Damola, and says weakly "I know Damola, and I am grateful for that... But now I need some time..." (21:59:41) Narriah whispers to Xiosia, "You wont let my mummy die?" She silently cries, "Please help her." (22:00:20) Damola nods sadly "I understand. Just know that you do have friends and really come to us if you want some comfort, okay?" (22:00:56) Damola firmly demands an answer. (22:01:13) Yenida nods, averting her gaze, as her eyes fill with tears again (22:01:28) Damola nods "Be well, Yenida, be well." (22:02:10) Yenida leaves, without looking back, lost in her grief
in the secret garden, privately, E plants a gobo root in memory of Llarnia, among a few others she has planted for lost ones and watered with tears, beneath the sacred tree. there is an empty spot where, curiously, 'A' is written in the soil: they do return, it is not unheard of. the living can but hope.