Past The Gates - Pt 1

October 05, 2017:

Amora brings in Hornbori, and despite the scrutiny of the Einharjar, the best laid plans….

City of Asgard

In Rp

Characters

NPCs: Hornbori of Nidavallir

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

**The story so far: **

Mattias, led by Amora, returns to Asgard to seek out the Norns. The three witch-like creatures (of Wyrd) that record the fates of past, present, and future acknowledge Mattias to be a lost Asgardian. However, at the end of the ceremony, a hole to Svartalfheim, the ancestral home of the dark elves and Malekith the Accursed, opens. A monstrous bird known as a ‘Valravn’ revealed itself to be the warped form of Mattias’ mother, and that if it were to devour Mattias’ heart, his mother would revert back to her Asgardian form and the curse would be lifted.

Wounded by the Valravn, Mattias lay in a pool of his own blood. Amora, having already set the stage for Asgard to be in her debt, directed Mattias through a ritual of Asgardian magics that both healed his body and forged a weapon in his hands that could be used against Malekith.

The ritual nearly killed Mattias Larsson, who succumbed to unconsciousness and fell to the ground…

Now…

“It appears to be mere exhaustion; he should be awake by his own devices at any time now, but if anything is needed, any pain, any sign of curse, we’ve been allotted to provide assistance.”

The apothecary was not the Grand Apothecary, but one of her subordinates. Still, past his graying and shortly trimmed beard and long hair tied back in a knot, he carries the satchel emblazoned with the symbol of the palace’s own doctors. Long robes of white and brown didn’t match the color of his hair, nor the green of his eyes, giving the man a mismatched look about his color scheme.

A check up, he’d said it was, a graceful offering from the seat of Asgardian power, but despite his polite smile to Amora the Enchantress and his friendly demeanor…
…it didn’t explain the presence of two /Einherjar/ standing guard on the other side of the door…
…and others, down on the street, watching the roads as if their attention aren’t directed elsewhere.

The apothecary, as well, has spent the last fifteen minutes finding new and clever ways to always keep Amora in his field of vision, even when tending to the resting form of Mattias of Gothenburg.

But she had made it into the walls of Asgard, welcomed as a guest, give or take a few pairs of eyes.

    But not the palace.

The series of rooms were lush. Nestled just outside of the palace, the small estate was a resting place for dignitaries from visitors from the other realms that held banners of peace with Asgard. Notably, the Vanir and the Alfar. The tall, high-walled estate was rich with tapestry and flowing white curtains, open to a massive balcony that boasts a pool of warmed water and an impressive view of the seat of Odin the All-Father’s power. Longship-shape craft patrol the palace high above, flying from point to point.

All around are the signs of magic so sophisticated that it has been harnessed to look no different from /technology/.

The center of the two rooms bore a table of Asgardian faire, rare fruits, wine, and a small care package of leathered pants and underclothing for Mattias to replace the bloodied clothing that had been cut away before placing him in his bed.

They had been generous.
    But it isn’t the palace.

“If I may say so,” The apothecary continues, stepping away from Mattias’ door with a shifted pair of eyes to the impressive blonde. The Enchantress. “I’d been told that your assessment of his condition wasn’t a matter of trauma, and your assessment, I agree with. The magic that healed his wound seems to have been rather thorough, to the point that I couldn’t find anything wrong with him at all when performing the scrying. He’s in peak physical condition, regardless of his scarring.”

The apothecary shrugged the shoulder-strap of his satchel onto one shoulder and turned his back to the door, facing Amora.

“Is there…anything else that you may need from us?”

No Miss. ‘No Amora the Enchantress’, though few would regale her as such, save Mattias or those who spoke such a name bearing the weight of her reputation.

Still, the apothecary, despite his concern about turning his back to the woman, tries his politeness.

//

The weapon is /placed/, but not finished, not forged.

Magic’s and meddling of Amora’s own design blazed across the Axe’s dual bladed head with the meet of grasp between Mattias and his Midgardian /mothers/. Gifted to him bare, until then, the contact engraving the blade in a forging that a dwarf could not duplicate, with a meaning no /heart/ could equal.

The haft arrived when the door to his other home closed and sealed the truth behind a woman worthy of Asgard, but not of it - before she went back to her own ‘other’ home in Africa, assuring Mattias’ mutual kinship in (dis)placement.

Two pieces to a whole, but unable to fully merge and become the weapon wielded by the man known as Mattias, Son of Lars. A hole between blades left open and unfulfilled, empty and loose upon the haft even if it fit, there was still a space of emptiness.

    //Loose.

        Unwieldly.

                A broken weapon..
       
                            A broken lineage. //

Amora remains back as the apothecary does his own studies, his observation assuaging something but that does not show… Just as her entry within the walls of Asgard and the open stares were met with a deeper apathy.

    And a lifted tilt of chin, though her eyes were avoidant of looking higher to the palace.

        //In time. //

The caution and care the apothecary regarded The Enchantress with is instinct, even if the whispers and words proved fallacy, the way the woman remained beside her claimed seat, but not resting within it while those eyes of a frosted mossy hue stare upon the sleeping form of Mattias and the man seeing to him.

Feet are bare at soles, but between toes and through, golden tiny chains weave, holding emeralds to offset the chill of her gaze, to the heat of forged gems inlaid along the spidered splay of delicate chains. Where one path ends and another spread begins is marked by the hold of intricate weaving to knot around the Absinthe-huen stones of precious placement.

Spread over calves, point upon knees to meet just above where the path once more opens like ropes of gold, fine honed to fit perfectly over the contour of thighs that show shadows to contour where muscles of time forged practice and Asgardian rite… Disappearing beneath the slip of dark green satin, another meet and hold of fabrics just upon apex to spill in parts of four down around her legs, keeping her covered, but in now way would such exposure of skin seem modest by Midgardian standards.

A single thread drawn, a single link bent and the whole image would fall apart, but the only exposure seems to come from the fathomless gaze that could undress a man of his very skin and have him gift the bloody package to her with his own hands.

But not by first glance, not if one does not know, and the apothecary has very well listened. Some things though draw curiosity, down upon one exposed hip the massive head of the battle axe rests, her fingers curled over the curved top, fingers split around the wedge of the metallic hook of claw, the very thing that melds it (unfinished) to pin the haft in place. Heavy wood, reinforced by the intricate path and mold of Uru metal bracing to the base resting just outside of the arch of bare foot.

    //Blood still drops from the claw and between, down into the metal holding and along the revelation of placed haft, driven into the massive weaponhead… //

A tilt of her head and the woven braids linked with tiny golden chains, tied upon the ends to hang like threads, sweep over the bare slope of shoulders, dipping along the contours where collarbones contour a small dip in the span of pale flesh before spilling beneath further drops of fabric that fall just as freely as the drapery within the space. Eyes flick from him to the table and back. “Let someone know meat and mead is requested.”

A drum of fingers, metal tipped, carry a low tone over the uru metal of the Ber-Axe, vibrations passing in the caress over runic inlay.

Before the apothecary can fully exit, the door space is shared by a bulky dwarf, no taller than four feet pushes through despite the grasp of one of the Einherjar upon his collar. No blows have been laid yet, but the sight of the dwarf pitched forward and set in his path despite the massive weight latched to his back, is a thing to easily avert attentions.

Amora’s eyes linger upon the apothecary, lips lightly parted as if there might be something else, those eyes of a similar hue lingering and then torn away to narrow at the sight of entry. If not for a small quirk to the corners of lips it would all seem almost unexpected….

“Hornbori, trained of Throgg in Nidavellir!” One hand extends and when the dwarf comes to a halt the Einherjar takes note of the name, the status, and the placement while his free hand seeks to pry fingers from the pommel of undrawn weapon.

When Hornbori is released from the massive grip, the posture of bull-dogged drag rights, his attire dusted with a grunt, he looks back at the corner of eyes nearly veiled by massive bushy brows that meet with his beard. “May be big, still can’t stop a dwarf!” Sniff. Snort. Pride unfettered despite the unseeable reaction of the Einherjar that leaves just behind the apothecary who stopped to bare witness.

“So, you bid for me to… do what for whom?” A narrow of his own eyes as he looks from Enchantress’ extended hand in greet towards the resting place of “… a Hamrammr, I heard correct? What are you up to now?” A lowering of his voice to a near rumble that could mimic disrupted mines.

But when moving back towards the form of the Enchantress his eyes fall (for lack of height!) easily upon the Axe, lips pushing out the bush of beard with their purse and working as if words came without voice.

“It’s not stable, not a worthy weapon, that bit you have wedged won’t do, and by the looks of his arm… Even if it was not /scrap/, could he even lift it!?” A shake of head as the dwarf is taking one step away, muttering.

Afraid, Hornbori?” The words are just as cold as her eyes, if it was not for the small smile of her amusement forming to touch them.

The gust of exhale seems as if from a massive horse and not a dwarven man. “No good. No good always. Evil witch.” A shake of hand, index extended to her but the laugh is throaty even if words seem aimed to harm come in an exchange of amusement. ‘When’s that little monk-hand gonna have meats and mead delivered?”

“Tsk.” Amora clicks her tongue behind teeth and returns her gaze to Mattias, fingers pushing the head of the axe from her hip when it shifts to bring her closer to his resting form. “Mattias is my Ber-Odr, Hornbori, and everything that was taken was simply given back. That is what I am up to.”  Fingertips of metallic barbs slide through that of a darker blonde, an endearing gesture…(perhaps?)..

“Right, and my mother’s beard didn’t catch her dinner either.” Even if the dwarf is curious, he does not reach for the Axe nearly dangling before him until it was handed his way.

//

Such a stark contrast, it is, from Westchester, New York, Midgard.

For days beforehand, Amora was confided to the height of a woman in Midgard, a masked persona of Helen Eve, and though the Xavier Institute was a mansion far better than most of the denizens of Midgard could ever be provided, it is no Asgard. This room, nearly three times the size of Mattias’ chamber in Westchester, was meant to be slept in by a more powerful creature of the realms.

When they’d brought him in, he was lain upon a table where nurses tended to wounds that weren’t truly there. Under Amora’s personal observation, his jacket of Asgardian ber was removed and his bloodied clothes cut away with shears. The buckets rushed in soon ran pink with blood wringed out of sponges, and the dirt was cleaned from his skin.
   
    Like a warrior.

Before the chirurgeon could tend to Mattias and observe, his skin was anointed with oils and his hair cleaned, placed into a state his naked body could be viewed upon as the scarred ber-sekir he was shown to be, alongside the whispers of what his legend would be:

He fought a Valravn?
His father’s son?
Maybe one day an Einherjar?

As servant girls are known to gossip, their chittering whispers died the further they traveled down the hall, leaving Mattias, naked beneath the bedding and furs, where he now sleeps in an ornately carved bed large enough for a jotun to sleep within. One leg pressed out of the blankets,  bare toes to the ceiling, his sleep is passionless, with little movement save the shift of eyes beneath closed lids as he dreams through the ether of secrets a witch such as Amora could scry through crystal or pool of water into.

    Does he dream of Asgard?
        Of Midgard?
            Of his mother’s face?

The arrival of the dwarf does little to break Mattias of Gothenburg from his slumber. The prying of her finger through his hair, separating it from his face, draws a sigh from his lips and a shift of his head, following the trail of her fingertips. His head turns, rolling to the side in point towards her hip and the dwarf beyond, but his eyes remain closed. The regeneration of his strength is not yet complete; it’s as if within the walls of Asgard his body refuses his waking until he is ready for war again, knowing well the nature of the /ber-sekir /will doubtlessly turn to his growing pile of work to be done.

Darkness falls.

The lamps in the room grow a dim white to match the lamps that keep the street below illuminated. Two hours before the close of the markets and the main thoroughfares, the taverns and mead halls begin to fill and the sounds of laughter carry from down the street. The very pulse of Asgard and its vibrant nightlife mix with the sound of crickets chirping freely in a city so sure of its safety under Odin’s watchful eye, that even the children continue to chase themselves down alleys between the buildings, unafraid of thieves that wouldn’t dare upset the casual peace retained within its walls.

It is then, as the skies above dim from orange to purple, that Mattias Larsson opens his eyes to the white curtains covering the windows and the blue and green feathered bird sitting on its sill, jerking its head quickly to watch the blonde ber-sekir wake from his slumber.

The instinctual way he stretches his arm out to the left side of the bed, seeking the form that had slept beside him for nearly a week prior, is a statement of welcome in and of itself, even if Amora sleeps elsewhere.

//

The way he turned /into/ Amora’s touch, a double edge sword borne upon each fingertip, Hornbori was attentive to the ministrations that barely grazed  tips along Mattias’ jawline. The only motion that took his eyes from the half-forged Axe of a Ber-sekir.

        ..See the moon in your eyes..

    “So then what is /it/..?”
            “/Not/ * it *… Him. Mattias. Larsso—- Son of Lars…”
                “..and he will forge the Sig..r..”
                    “…Tssshhh…”

The finger is upon the smaller man's lips, the tip pressing through coarse hair to make his lips come to pause and his eyes narrow upon the reflection of strapped form, clad in nothing but intricate links and hanging drapery of emerald. Pearlescent braids slipped over bare shoulders in her lean that took Amora, The Enchantress, eye to eye with Hornbori of Nidavellir. A forge smith trained beneath Throgg and Kamorr.

But only ties that /bind/ left the withdrawal of lips not herald a cry for blood and a lunge upon the woman bent and stooped before him. Hornbori looks from the Enchantress to the Ber-Sekir, to the… Unfinished Weapon, the talon still bearing base from the top of the weapons melding-craft. Such an unfinished bit of (perfection) weapon making the craftsman slowly close his eyes, crinkle a brow heavy in hairs to accent displeasure…

A step back parts metal claw from the hiding within beard and ‘stache’d lip to have him look upon her, but from bared toes laden in the weave of golden links… to that of her face. A framed bit of Asgardian perfection, also bearing the accent of golden chains in their fall, arches and bows to line her eyes in dips and the tiny accented dangles of a deep opal that reflects a pearlescent moss.

    “Svartalfheim… He will know..”
        “He already does, Hornbori…Mattias is the son…”
            “You best be prepared, this is all the help I can offer due to his…”

Silence came when Mattias faced the dwarf’s way. Hornbori nearly chewing his own facial hair in the dour expression that only cast upward to the rise of Amora. No longer Midgardian demure/petite… Honed in her statuesque figure of lithe athleticism despite being one for magicks and not war.

    “When he wakes, bring him…”
        “… For the final forging of the …”

The door closes behind Hornbori before the sun even begins to set, but he did not go without being fed fully of meats, cheeses, breads, mead, and a playful exchange of simple pleasantries with a servant girl with red hair and freckles.

All they did was laugh, joke, and she awkwardly tried to speak his tongue…

Amora rolled her eyes as well as her wrist that held a chalice of potent wine, sipped from until the door slowly clicks closed, leaving her seated where she had been once Hornbori raised the question…

The edge of Mattias’ bed bore a bow where she had claimed space, the hand not laden in drink still filtering golden-gemmed fingertips of claws through golden mane, leaving it splayed in the perfect swirl of a fan along side the curve of one exposed hip straddled by strips of deep emerald silk where sunset links do not hold it in place.

Hours passed, Amora did not lay there, she remained seated, as one glass became the drag of pitcher to her side, the contents as shadowed as the outside, as empty as…

The goblet is set aside, clinking against the matching pitcher when his arm extends and hand brushes along exposed hip, ending the residual silence inside… Despite outside

The grip alone, the welcoming coil of appendage that drags her along the surface as if she was a being so much smaller, leaves feet off the floor and tucks contours against him, but there was no positioning of slumber, just that of vigil, so when his eyes open, her arm extends along his side, a curl of fingers over his shoulder where gauntlets fade away and leave a touch of /feather light/ to explore his ment wound.

For that moment, jade eyes meet his cerulean, then tear away to follow the lines her bare fingers paint over skin laden in (newer)old scars and one, new…. Same or opposing, she still ensures with a relentless press into /softer/ tissue.

The light lean still captured by his grip and postured by her own has her look back upon him one that draws thinly pressed lips to a light part. When eyes close, they are pressed lightly upon his brow.

        … I’m going for the finish line…

“Welcome… Home…” The rise from him is like Panning a shadow from Never Never…

But when her hand reforms the gauntlets, links sweep into the fabric’d drapery of clothing, returning part to draw up, latching to her shoulder in a grip, all her own but latched by hooked claws and placed lamely down her back, spilling along the floor in a trail that bears earthen tone when most would say red was more fitting….

A draw of hands and the drapes are split in a clatter of rungs that leads to a balcony over the Asgardian Citadel Streets below….

Amora has yet to even approach that ledge and look down. But the reflection of the moons, the bustle below, The Enchantress cast her own glow and it reflected in the gesture back to Mattias, to draw him up and out.

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