“You asked, and we listened! We now present to you ‘A Story of Love’ to shake out of our routinely ‘A Story of War’ updates!”
A side chamber of TOMB OF THE ANCIENTS. A MESSENGER OF ORYX approaches a PRIESTESS OF GEB who’s brewing a tincture.
PRIESTESS: How may I serve the Exalted God?
MESSENGER: It’s not business. I needed to see you.
PRIESTESS: What is this?
MESSENGER: If I show my face, will you swear to your Ancients not to shoot the messenger?
PRIESTESS: Very well. I so swear.
He removes his headdress. He’s a priest but his smile is roguish.
PRIESTESS: If only I hadn’t sworn that.
MESSENGER: Sorry. I get shot at enough these days.
PRIESTESS: Some might say it’s deserved.
MESSENGER: Please let me explain.
PRIESTESS: You’re impersonating a Messenger of Oryx?
MESSENGER: The opposite, actually.
PRIESTESS: Who’d want to impersonate you?
MESSENGER: No, I’m really a messenger priest. They conscripted me. Said they needed fighters.
PRIESTESS: So they merely wanted your wandwork. How painful for you to be so used.
MESSENGER: It wasn’t like that.
PRIESTESS: Curious that you took no vow of silence, yet I never heard a word.
MESSENGER: No illicit messages. You try to write, they melt your hands off and make you heal them back.
He raises his scarred hand. Her eyes go wide with tears.
MESSENGER: I’m sorry. I can’t imagine how you’ve—
PRIESTESS: Do you see what I’m wearing?
MESSENGER: A very flattering robe…?
PRIESTESS: Not the shendyt. (She reveals Geb’s ring on her hand.)
MESSENGER: I have one too. It’s just a magic thing.
PRIESTESS: It’s a ring of wisdom. I thought I needed it if I was fool enough to love you.
MESSENGER lowers his eyes.
PRIESTESS: I’m sorry too.
MESSENGER: Don’t be. This is the gods’ fault.
PRIESTESS: You don’t make a very credible priest.
MESSENGER: I’d rather be incredible.
PRIESTESS: An incredible drunk? What priest carries a wineglass and no tome?
MESSENGER: It’s regulation, the top boss is a wine nut.
PRIESTESS: Even if she’s asleep, you shouldn’t say a goddess’ name so casually.
MESSENGER: Then I’ll say yours seriously. But what if we’re discussing dry seed things, the tough ones to crack—
PRIESTESS: I prefer dates.
MESSENGER: So what goes at the end of a screw—
PRIESTESS: Come now, my people’s tongue is more than expressive enough.
MESSENGER: I know. I’ve missed it.
PRIESTESS: Half my friends have jackals’ heads, and you’re more a dog than they are.
MESSENGER: Don’t worry. I wouldn’t bite without permission.
PRIESTESS: So well behaved now. Did your new masters put a collar under that robe?
The MESSENGER smiles and reaches out for PRIESTESS’ hand. She hesitates a moment, then lets him guide her hand until it touches the unarmored neck of his robe.
MESSENGER: No collar.
PRIESTESS: I don’t forgive you yet, you know.
MESSENGER: Then let me start making it up to you.
As they kiss, she drops Geb’s ring on the ground. They kick over the tincture but neither notices.
Thessal is the only woman I will ever love, both in game and in real life. I know that she is just a grouping of pixels created by an overweight, balding man as part of his job, but I also know that the bond we share and the love I have for her transcends these artificial boundaries put in place by society. You see, I have already decided that I am going to marry her. I am going to hold her tight, treat her right, and love her more than King Alexander ever could and ever would. King Alexander does not hold a candle to me. Only 5 feet tall and probably plagued with problems relating to performance in the bedroom, the same is not said about me. I have been working hard for my Queen, and the results show. Six foot 5”, 285 lbs of pure rock-hard muscle just for my girl. I am in the gym 7 days out of the week, hours each time honing my body to be the perfect vessel for my Thessal. I have been compared to Christian Bale in American Psycho, that’s how good I look. It’s alright to be jealous… if I were you I would be jealous too. Compared to me, none of you stack up. Frail little wizard mains, I mean come on. You’re all a joke compared to what I have become, and it’s all for my Thessal.
I can’t wait until the day of our wedding comes, where we will feast on expertly cooked Sea Slurps and end the night with me drinking all the Coral Juice I can. Her in her flowing white wedding gown… I am not sure if I can take it anymore. Please my Thessal, quit being just a body pillow and transform into the 3D Goddess I know you can be. Let me marry you… A beautiful honeymoon dinner date at Sizzler awaits us my love…
Most lovers only feel that the object of their affection is divine. How fortunate I am, to know you are at the exalted center of the cosmos in fact as well as feeling. If only I had the words to tell you so.
My life didn’t truly begin until I first floated into your castle. The guards escorted me through a maze of halls and courtyards, where it seemed at every turn some force struck me dumb and weak with awe at the grandeur of it. But then they brought me to your chamber, where I laid eyes upon you and forgot all else.
You were taller and broader than any mortal, clad in layers of smooth black plate set with gleaming almandine, yet you moved with graceful ease. The air around you shimmered with power, and the very stones trembled from your deep resonant voice—but that only partly accounted for the quivering I felt in your presence. I wanted nothing more than to reach out and touch those great horns, to ease the shining onyx helmet off and look upon the face beneath. I knew that whatever form your features took, they would be beautiful.
I was ready to obey your every word. And so I have, every moment since.
I cannot prove my devotion with mighty feats, for I lack great power or wisdom or armies to command. But I can sweep and dust your castle spotless; in winter’s dark, I can gather presents to cheer you; if the Nexus forces attack, I can distract them away from your chamber. Sometimes I see you there, in battle with them, dancing. They’re good people too—if I could help them see you as I do, maybe there’d be no need to fight. Maybe then we could dance together.
With my voice I say, “Yes, sir. As you command, sir.” But for every word I stammer there are countless more I dare not speak, lest the merest whisper of a secret thought shatter a dam and send every unspoken desire gushing forth from my lips. I can hardly meet your deep red eyes for fear they will see right through me. Perhaps they do.
All this I’ve only had the courage to confide to my friend Guillermo. He teased me with his impression of your speech (which really doesn’t capture you) but then proposed I write about my longing in a letter. And so I have, but to deliver this missive is more than I dare dream.
Oryx, you see the far corners of the universe; will you someday see the admirer at your feet? I do not know. But I will give you all I have, for the chance to do so is enough. The realms are forever yours, as is my heart.
Your devoted servant, now and always,