04.02.3014: Upon My Liar's Chair
Summary: Nitrim delivers Rozlyn's paintings to Sarah. He tells her about a promise he has made, and is nearly maimed for it.
Date: 16 December 2013
Related: As Foretold
Nitrim Sarah 


Sarah's Cell, Orielon Watch House, Landing
Room description in first pose.
April 02, 3014

It is just another day for Sarah 113 of 164. She has been a captive of the Havenites for two-hundred and twenty-nine days. Her dark crimson hair has been recently trimmed short, almost as short as the first day she arrived. She is sitting on a mat in the center of her white, sterile prison cell, back to the gaping, force-shielded reinforced viewing window. She is staring at the white wall in front of her, her luminous cybernetic eyes focused on a single point. There is an uneaten tray of food still sitting just within the cell.

When Nitrim approaches, after clearing all the appropriate security check points, the field does not drop to give the man access to the captive's cell. Though there is that metal chair waiting for him.

Nitrim has come today, bearing tribute of a sort. Walking down the last few feet of hallway, a hissing, slithering form traces its way up Nitrim's shoulders, mindful of the rolls of paper held under the man's arm. When he crosses into the light of the cell block, the ever-present wash of light above outlines the cobalt blue of Dahlia's scales, the long, black coat he wears, and the thick material of the prints he carries under his arm.

Cigarette already lit and dangling from his lip, he steps over to the chair and looks back to the guard, motioning with a carefree hand towards the defensive screen. "I accept responsibility. Please lower it."

"Not up to me, my Lord," says one of the two guards. He nods his head toward Sarah. "Up to her." Then the Watchman turns back to his stoic, statuesque position.

Sarah maintains her luminous gaze on the empty white wall for a moment longer before she slowly turns toward the defensive screen that separates the two. She remains cross-legged on the mat, turning that unblinking attention onto the visitor. She says nothing, the weight of her gaze taking careful stock of the man that hasn't visited her in many weeks.

The surprise lift of Nitrim's brow can only say that the change in rules altogether are an interesting moment indeed. The brow quirks towards the Watchman, and Nitrim offers the gentleman a quiet, friendly nod.

Turning back to the defensive screen, Nitrim moves to stand beside the chair and lowers his attention to Sarah. For a long moment, his mossy-green eyes stare back at the solid blue gaze that centers on him. Eerily, the snake that lines his arm turns to do the same, flicking its forked, black tongue towards her.

"Could we speak, please, Sarah 113 of 164?" Nitrim asks politely, something pained and hard lining his features. "I have things for you."

"We can speak, Nitrim Khournas of the Inner Worlds," Sarah says in her flat alto. She rests her hands lightly on her knees with her spine nicely aligned with her shoulders in a sharp 'T'. She does not regard the snake that works its way around his arm, but instead maintains her gaze on the man without so much as a wayward glance elsewhere.

Nodding gently towards her, Nitrim looks down the plane of his shoulder to the slithering head of Dahlia and reaches to her chin, brushing lighting against the underside. Assuming the woman means that he has access to her cell, he looks up and over to the Watchman, motioning for him once more.

"I have brought something that I thought you'd find interest in," Nitrim starts again, standing before the screen in an assumed wait for the wall to fall between them. "I…also come bearing a bit of news."

"No," Sarah says plainly as he gestures. "You don't keep your hands to yourself." Which would normally be delivered in a coy voice, but not for this Cantosan. It is flat, and her lips do not even curve with a threat of a smile. "Tell me of your news, show me what you have brought."

"What?"

The words come out of Nitrim's mouth dumbfounded, not understanding where the accusation has come from. His lips part to mingle with the confused look upon his brow, ending in a quiet frown. "Sarah 113 of 164, I've never placed my hands on you…" The words trail off, allowing himself to be defeated as he spares a quick glance to the guard, then back to Sarah. "Dr. Rozlyn Orelle will no longer be visiting you, and if someone harmed you I want to know who they are."

Setting one of the rolls of paper on the chair, he unfolds one, showing a creative piece of art in Rozlyn's design, made specifically for Sarah herself. One hand high and the other low, he shows the painted print to her for her inspection.

Sarah shakes her head. "You do not understand my meaning, Nitrim Khournas… I speak of your desire to trespass into my mind is something that I wish to prevent." She tilts her head a bit now, maintaining those luminous eyes on the Inner Worlder. "If you wish to be granted entry, then you will prove that you will not attempt to infiltrate my thoughts." Perhaps Nitrim is not the first to go poking around in Sarah's mind, but she is protecting the sacred space that is her mind. Then she rolls her palms over her knees as she leans forward a bit to inspect the painting that is revealed. She lifts her brows ever so slightly before sits back again. "Hmm," is all she says for now.

Once he's sure the painting has been inspected to her liking, Nitrim quietly rolls it up and reaches for the other. "This wall doesn't protect you from that." Nitrim admits to her, shaking his head from side to side. "I gave you my word that I wouldn't do so, and the only thing that keeps me from trying is that I choose to, but it is literally impossible for me to learn, or stay, or demand anything from your mind. If you didn't want me there, you could force me out with a thought. I couldn't be inside of your mind against your will, even if I tried."

The second painting opens, depicting Nitrim's tattooed shoulders, arms spread wide on a field of ice. In the starfield above, a star one-fourth the side of Haven's own local star can be seen in the distance, and whisps of freezing wind whip around his hair.

"Please, Sarah?" Nitrim asks again. "We shook. I gave my word."

Her piercing, luminous cybernetic gaze does not wilt or waver as she lapses into thoughtful silence. She regards first him and then the painting. The latter is given the longest of her silent stares before she draws herself slowly to her feet. "Allow him entry," Sarah says to the guards as she steps all the way to the back of the room, following protocol. She interlocks her fingers behind her back, spine straight and shoulders neatly aligned in a precise 'T'.

The shield crackles as it dissipates, giving the Inner Worlder entry to her white cell.

Eyes locked onto Sarah's as he shows the second painting, Nitrim waits until she is back against the wall before he rolls it up, collects the first on the chair beside him, and crosses into the cell. Leaving the chair behind, he steps over to her bed and lays the prints down on the very cot that wouldn't meet Khourni standards.

"This is Dahlia…she needed a break away from Volkan, and this…" Nitrim pulls a chip out of his pocket, which he also lofts onto the bed. "Is a chip of music and some of my photography. Should stave the boredom."

With one more glance to her face, Nitrim moves to the wall she stands against and makes for a a spot of wall just outside of arm's reach. Uninvited and without asking, he turns to sit against the wall with his knees bent and his arms draping over propped knee.

Sarah regards the snake with a silent stare, and then she pushes off the wall so that she may approach her cot where the paintings have been left. She does not have any interest for the first one, but slowly lifts the second so that she can stare at the canvas. "What is the purpose of this?" She asks as she narrows her eyes upon the distant sun.

"I dream." Nitrim replies to Sarah, eyes away from her as he tends to Dahlia. Once again brushing his fingertip under the snake's scaled jaw, his aura flares and his eyes white over, and the snake turns to him. Curiously, the creature tilts his head, as if communicating with the man. "I had a dream and a theory that comes with it, but I considered what it would be like to be so far from home. I felt the wind, the bitter chill, but I've been around Haven enough to know that even if it isn't the prettiest, home is still home." Nitrim pauses. "She painted it at my request."

"What do you mean… you dream?" Sarah asks, the question slightly edged. Then she stares down at the painting once more, and she states in a flat note that, "I would like it more if you were not a featured element, Nitrim Khournas." Then she sets the painting down on the cot once more, but her gaze does linger on it.

"Yeah, I know I'm an ugly thing." Nitrim chuckles softly into his knees, head shaking from side to side. "It was…the perspective I had in the dream, so I described it that way. Feel free to ask for a pen and scratch me out of it if you want. It wasn't out of vanity." Sighing, Nitrim wraps his arms around his knees and buries his mouth beneath the bar his arms make. White eyes watching his snake, he continues. "But in the dream I could feel the cold, Sarah 113 of 164 and when I woke up I could feel it still. The idea that I've been privileged to grow in warmth, away from the cold, it made me feel hollow."

"I, and every other Sarah before me, have lived in that cold, Nitrim Khournas," Sarah says as she continues to stare at the painting. "Warmth has no privilege." Then she turns her back on the canvas, and she sets her piercing gaze on the Inner Worlder. "Are these… dreams… another symptom of your anormality?"

"Yes, they are. I had a dream of your eyes telling me to release you a month before we met." A faint, almost inaudible snap sounds around the two of them as Nitrim's head nods against his forearms. Nose beneath his arms and his lips hidden from view, his head turns ever-briefly to watch Sarah.

"Don't move, just stare at me like we're…staring." Nitrim murmurs quietly. "They can't hear me right now, another symptom and I can only keep this for a few minutes. I am blocking the sound from escaping us. If you wish to respond to me you need to sit in a way that they cannot see your mouth. Do you understand?"

The Awakened creating the sound dampening does not go unnoticed to the Cantosan. She immediately takes a broad step backwards from the man, and her lips peel back slightly over her teeth. She says nothing as she stares at him with those luminous blue eyes.

"Please, stop moving away. If they see me doing this I might be denied to come in the future, just like Rozlyn was." Nitrim says quietly, calmly, as his shoulders sag in a display of a sigh. The snake around his arm lays its head on his arm and everything around the Khourni lordling seems to still. "She told me about Lord Brigham, and your brother, and I've given her my word that if I can bring him to justice for what he did, I will. What he did was unacceptable."

"Silence!" Sarah snarls, stepping forward to put her face deadly close to his own. "I will not listen to your worthless words." The Cantosan flexes her fingers over and over again as if on the brink of violence. "Speak of my brother again, Inner Worlder, and I will taste you blood before they kill me." She then steps back sharply, sweeping wide to turn her back on him. She can feep the slight pressure as she steps right out of his Awakened-blessed dome.

Mother F— Nitrim starts to bite down onto his bitter, silent words as Sarah 113 of 164…YEP…she breaks the seal on their private communication. Chance foiled, both he and Dahlia look up to each her step back and away from him. Eyes flitting over to the Watchman, he swallows and tilts his head up to rest on his knee.

"My sister died." Nitrim replies to Sarah's back, his tone drooping to something somber. "I won't bring it up again but…she's gone." Nitrim pauses, a quiet falling over him. "But I still mean what I said. I made a promise."

Sarah starts to laugh — and it is a hollow, terrible laugh that carries bitter rage deep within it. "You are a terrible representative for your people, Nitrim Khournas. Tell me, do you think that I would seek to bring any of my kind to justice for the slaying of your sister? Or the Clerics who have dissected countless anomolies just like you?" She advances on him once more, moving like an enraged creature on the brink of rabid response. "Save your promises for your Gods, Nitrim Khournas."

Nitrim doesn't move nor flinch at her aggressive movement. Dahlia, ever-defensive of her master, parts her jaw and bares fangs in a hiss towards the Cantosan, but Nitrim simply stares at Sarah, reaching to brush at Dahlia to calm her. Seated, with knees bent, a hopeless position, Nitrim stares.

"I didn't make you a promise." Nitrim replies to her gently, matter-of-factly. "I was just telling you what I'm doing." His head shakes to her. "And I'm not here as a representative of my people. I angered you, Sarah 113 of 164, and for that I apologize." Nitrim looks to her shoulder, huffing in a bitter scoff. "A tabloid reporter brought up my Reena. I nearly took his head off. It was all over our news reports."

When Daliah hisses at Sarah, she turns sharply toward the snake and bares her own teeth in her own terrible hiss. Then the Cantosan rolls her shoulders almost akin to a wolf who has been caged for too long. "Perhaps you will be lucky, Inner Worlder… perhaps in two decades time, you will see the face of your sister again as her coterie stands alongside her brothers and sisters and ravage this world," Sarah says, her voice flattening once more. She turns her back on him once more, interlocking her cybernetic fingers behind her once more.

The expression on the snake that lines Nitrim's arm doesn't change to match her master's. Instead, Nitrim's eyes narrow into slits at what Sarah says, bringing a curl to the man's fingertips against his knee. His aura flares once more, this time in a pointed look to the snake, who quickly unfurls from his arm and slithers at great speed across the floor, out of the cell and into a comfortable space near the floor-lining heating vents.

Rising to his feet with a gentle popping at the back of his spine, Nitrim see-saws his head from one side to the next, his tone matching Sarah's.

"I know what you're doing." Nitrim says flatly, a line of white forming along his knuckles in a barely contained rage. "We both have a right to be angry. My people are out for blood." Nitrim adds, coldly. "But I did not come here to taunt you, and you're old enough to know the difference. Your world is dying, isn't it, Sarah? How many more of your people need to die before you fucking realize there's a chance at salvaging thousands, maybe millions of them before it's too late?"

"No, Nitrim Khournas… it is your world that is doomed. Not mine." Sarah steps toward him, her strides taking on a predatory gait. "You don't seem to understand. We are prepared to die… we have tried twice before to take these worlds from you… and this time, we will succeed. We have millions to spare… do you?"

"Come on…" Nitrim's head tilts, his teeth showing as he challenges the woman before him. "…three times? The first two failed and how could you be so sure that the third will succeed. Because it must?" Nitrim steps in closer, nearly face to face with her. "Sarah 113 of 164 you are a soldier in a cell with no current marial purpose but you have no idea how much influence you have right now. I have not asked you to sacrifice your morals. I come here as a fellow human. Do not throw that away." His voice quiets. "Do not throw me away. I never asked to be your enemy."

"There will be no peace, Nitrim Khournas." Sarah narrows her luminous blue eyes to met his own gaze. "I have not spent nearly two-hundred and thirty days in this prison because I believe in my bones that an alliance can be made between yours and mine." Then she curls her lips a bit over her teeth again. "I am still in this cell, Inner Worlder, because I know how to survive…"

"Nothing is going to survive this war, Sarah 113 of 164." Nitrim replies, knuckles red and angry as his death-grip of a fist releases. Her angry teeth and the inherent strength in her body not slowing him or pushing him away, he shakes his head to her. "I feel it in my bones that Children of the Abandoner or not, this war is going to leave your people with shit to rule over by the time it is done." He nods his head towards the painting, then gives a pointed look to her face. "And I'm still going to do what I told you I would, because Child of the Abandoner or not, I am a good man, and if that's what all I get before your people kill me? Then fuck it. I'll be fine with that. I didn't sign on for being a monster by association."

Sarah immediately turns her back on him, stepping away as she crosses her arms at her chest while holding her poise strong and steadfast. She says nothing more as she maintains her gaze fixedly on the blank while wall. There is a long, deliberate silence from the Hostile before she speaks without looking his way, She appears to have nothing more to say.

"People, lives, clubs, culture." Nitrim murmurs to her back, nodding towards the chip he's left on her bed, though with her back turned he knows she'll never see it. Certain gestures have to be made for one's self. Stepping past her, there's a brush of his shoulder to hers as he goes, heading through the perimeter where the defense screen will soon raise. "I'll be back with less shit next time." Nitrim waves to her, his back turned to her. "And for what it's worth, I'm sorry. She liked you very much."

With a flash of his aura, the Dahlia, the snake, looks up and slithers to his leg, wrapping around it on a slow climb up his body as he heads for the door.

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