• April 9, 2012 /  OOC

    Well, this is it guys. I am sad to say the real life comes to steal me away.. I can’t say how long it will be before I’m back in time for a proper character.  And so it comes, Bene has come to his deathbed. The ballad of the Thorn-Crowned Cardinal has come to its close. Deo Gratias!

    I’ll miss Bene. He has been a unique and wonderful chartacter. He represented a lot of myself and a lot of things that are no where near myself.  I have a certain closeness to Bene. He represents a lot of the doubts of us discerners as well as our hopes. Yes, us discerners. I am going to come out and say it to all of you now: I am currently discerning to the Catholic Priesthood and in all likelihood, I’ll go to seminary in a year or two and in several following, I’ll kneel at the altar for ordination. As a discerner, do I agree with a lot of what Bene did? No. I can’t say if he was called to the Priesthood in the end and what of his decisions are right and wrong.. but, I never really expected to either.

    I want to thank you all for making this game as stunning as it is. I’ve played a few MUs in my day and this one is my favorite. the combination of a beautiful theme, wonderful players, and great RP.  Please, keep up the great work. I’ll stick around with my alts and get some RP when I can with them. Yet, I cannot say you’ll really be seeing as much of me as I’d like in the time ahead.

    As I said, he meant a lot to me. I hope to have many of his virtues and hope I can have learned from his faults. I hope you enjoyed him. I did.

    Give me a few months and you’ll have a new young priest.

    In the meantime, a song.

    http://youtu.be/ZDHwAoBQWJA

     Johnny Cash. Need I say more?

     

  • April 4, 2012 /  Reflections

    Dear Bishop ab Domincanus

    Well, life never ceases to amaze sometimes and certainly does keep us busy. A blessing and a curse in many ways, but one which we bear quite willingly. I have taken to spending a little more of my time here at the Abbey, sometimes even neglecting the daily commute back to Church Square and home. The abbot’s bed has become a little less harsh, though I still perfer that of home to this.

    The Abbey is growing on me, I’ll confess. It has a sort of, quiet, austere charm to it all. The monks, though seemingly unable to laugh and only a few still possessing the ability to smile, are quite kind once you do get to know them. Excellent people, the thought brings a smile to me even now. One can wander the grounds for a long time and take in the cold fall air. I am sad that autumn is leaving us behind.. the cold fingers of winter now begin their steady onset. Yet, I think it all shall look quite nice with a blanket of snow and the pond with a good layer of ice.

    I like thinking of such things as the monks and snow on monastery grounds. Far preferable, I find, to some of the other thoughts of late. I cannot quite place it, but I feel so.. weary these days. Far more weary than I ever did as Cardinal. And in the midst of the weariness, I miss Julea all the more. I visit he grave from time to time, give the news of the city, talk about it all. It helps, though not quite enough lately. The questions of her death remain unanswered, hidden amongst the whispers and shadows of Lithmore. Part of me desires to confront the one man I have not confronted on the death. I wish to see His Majesty, but I am afraid of what might happen if I do. I mean, I’m not -stupid-, am I? But still, he is the one who I cannot face, not yet. Perhaps.. perhaps I should invite him to the Abbey, show him about our grounds. I might like that, I think. I shall write a letter.

    And then there is Lady le Storm. I worry for her sometimes, though have faith. She is young, does not realize all that she does. Yet.. I am sad for her. She must be so afraid beneath it all. Lithmore is different than Tubor, of that you can be sure, and she has so many new things to think about and attend to. To me, she’s become the troublesome, mildly annoying teenage daughter I’ll never have. She gives me grey hairs, yes, but I can’t help loving her like a father would a child. A lot of Lithmore seems to draw that sort of affection from me lately. Not a bad thing, I suppose.

    How are you faring, Bishop? I heard that the Spiritists have sprouted up again in Irisum, a pity. Send my regards to mother and father, ask them to have faith in me. They are in my prayers. Of course, you are as well and your good work. Please, I ask your prayers of me as well. Lord knows I need them.

    Sincerely,
    Fr. Piuso

  • April 1, 2012 /  Quotes and Logs

    “People are like good wine, time and age but improves them and sometimes they taste foul at first, but give them a year or so and they become something simply splendid.”

    Admittedly, I stole the inspiration for that one from Pope John XXIII

    “But sin does not defeat us by breaking our souls, it defeats us when we let it consume us, to become all we are and though a man may never sin in his life, if he dwells in the sins of others and lets the darkness about him consume who he is, he is no less dust than a Thief on the street, the murderer in the night, or the mage.”

    I was please with that one.. thought provoking for me as someone who wastes too much of his time thinking about things like sin.

  • March 31, 2012 /  Reflections

    Oh, it feels good to be on me feet again. I was not made to lie in a bed, hospital or otherwise, and my bones were itching to return to the city. And return I did.

    Seems not much changed in my absense, save the arrival of this noblewoman. Lien le Storm. She is an interesting soul, that much can be seen. Reminds me of Jules in someways, other ways no. They both have an aptitude for trouble, that is quite evident. She’s become something of a daughter to me, which is interesting. I like her, she’s nice enough. An interesting woman and a challenge to be honest. I do like challenges. Oh and her soul, it has many little things to work out, love not the least of which. That seems common.. love is either perverted to politics or to pleasure. Our greatest sin really, for is God not Love? The love of a priest to his flock, the love of a mother to child, of a husband to a wife, these are things which come from God and yet, its become a commodity in our culture. People use it for everything it is not for: forming alliances, justifying evils, hedonistic searches for happiness, so many things..

    And then there is the common men. I’ve been taking a lot of confessions lately, this is true. Gives one a lot of perspective, which is good. My theory with the last upholds. People are looking after God but in all the wrong places. They say they want to be happy, so they throw themselves to drugs, sex, parties, general debauchery. Its disturbing really. The soul of man cannot find peace save in God and all which is not God is dust. It is here for but a moment and then passes upon the winds of time. That which comes from God lasts into eternity. I am not saying life cannot be fun, but we have to have a base, a firm foundation, and the only one that shall do is the Lord and His Church. Such has been my advice of late, God grant that the souls that need it do hear.

  • March 22, 2012 /  Memories

    The brothers met me at the Abbey door.  Dressed in their volumous black robes and cloaks, so far removed from the plain white of my own, hood raised, hands crossed. One looked older, the other two a little younger, closer to my age. As I dismounted, they spoke quietly, in whispers amongst themselves, a few hand signals given in passing to suppliment the conversation. And there I stood, alien.

    The elder came forward after a while, a small bow and his hand jutted out to greet me. “Hello. I am the Father Prior.” he introduced himself in a rasping voice, “You are the Abbot they’ve sent, I presume.” His gaze looked me up and down, studying me. I could see it linger on my brand which, despite my best attempts at covering it as far as sumptuary would allow, was still quite visible from its home on my jugular.

    “Yes.” I responded, trying to draw his attention away from the penitential mark, “Father Bene ab Piuso.” he nodded finally and motioned me to follow.  The Abbey Church was massive. Stunning. Even more beautiful than the Cathedral by some judges.  Its lights had been unlit save a few candles and it was filled with the congregation of black robed monks and nuns.  I was led to the altar where the Father Prior made his announcements.  The other two monks stood beside me, a silent honor guard. Finally, the bells began to ring.

    The Father Prior turned to face me. “Piuso, do you swear to me now, before God, the vows of monastic life? Of celibacy, of obedience to the law of God, and to poverty?” “I do.” He nodded and I was gently, if ever so firmly, pushed to the ground. I lay on my stomach before the altar.  A black funeral pall was laid over me. All was silent save the church bells which kept their heavy, mournful toll.

    I lay there in the darkness, my life passing before me. I saw in the shadows the red cloth of prelacy, the altar of the Cathedral. I saw Deviah, I saw Cedany. And above all, I saw her. I whispered my prayer, “Dav, I know this may seem like a little much now after it all.. You know my thoughts and my heart, no need to voice it. I think I’ll be a fine monk.  Give me strength and Faith. Give me hope and joy. I need both.” I laughed softly to myself but soon silenced as I felt the cloth around me being removed. I rose, a nod was given by the Father Prior who put and hand on my shoulder to guide be down from the altar, “Come, Father Abbot, the cloister is this way.”

    The halls of the monastery, sitting at their perch at the very head of the Church, were long and echoing. The Chalice windows streaming faint light into the area. It was absolutely silent in the abbey, even the footfalls seemed dulled by an unknown and heavy solemnity. No laughter, no shouts, no song past the steady chants of the day’s prayer life.  The monks and nuns were similarly somber, dressed in the heavy sable of their habits they glided through on their detached march.  Their eyes were downcast and their minds seemed to be off somewhere else. Utter silence. I remembered Father Francis’s words to me when I told him I had been appointed abbot, “Ah, Piuso, be careful. A man can loose himself in a monastery.. much like a cemetery, everyone there have long since passed to the Lord.” I had not quite believed him at the time but now, what he said was right before me.

    The tour was short, the quarters for the sisters and brothers, a council room where I would be expected to greet the monastery tomorrow, and finally my quarters. I remembered the place from before, I had helped get everything organized. It seemed so long ago now and even in this small piece of preserved time, like a memory come to life, it all seemed foreign.  I shuffled through everything, looked at the ledgers and notebooks kept for me. The Father Prior updated me on the comings and goings of the abbey. I nodded, we would see the library and scriptorium tomorrow, then onto Southside for my maiden voyage as ‘Father Bene ab Piuso, High Priest for the Southside of Lithmore.’ Oh, such weighty titles.

    That night, I longed for my bed by the Cathedral which seemed so far off. I missed her all the more, suddenly, everything that had happened seemed so much more real. She was gone and I now lived in the constraints of the cloister, even when I were to leave its physical bounderies. But a month ago, I had been young, in love, looking ahead to marriage, children, a happy, normal life. A few months before, I had been Cardinal of Lithmore. Now Bene ab Piuso had been submitted, I was little more than a simple, anonymous title, ‘Father Abbot.’

    Dav save me.

    Only a few days later, I would find myself in a different cloister. The dank walls about me and the ever present promise of tortures to come.

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    March 18, 2012 /  OOC

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  • March 15, 2012 /  Reflections

    Sunlight filters through the stunning stain glass of the Cathedral as I step in. All at once, it is familiar, warm. Home. Yet, it seems to be too large for home. Its expanse too great. Its air too cold.

    I remember the last time I was thinking of these things. I was an Acolyte with too much zeal for my own good. I’d passed all the tests with flying colors. This had been what I’d been moving to my entire life: Priesthood. Because of that, it’d be alright. I could not be more wrong.

    And here I am again, on the threshold of this movement yet again.  I feel so sure, yet so unsure.  Its the Cloth that I’ve always known, so why am I anxious.  I wore it many years, why is it now seeming so heavy.

    I was Cardinal, then nothing, now Priest. Funny how it all comes full circle. This time though, it shall be better. This time, I shall stay the course. This time, I know what must be done.

  • March 14, 2012 /  Reflections

    Undoubtedly, the whispers have been heard. They are true, most at least, I am sad to say. Much of this time, I have been thinking on if I should say anything to it to the King. The man is one who I have, admittedly, been wanting to speak to yet, wholly cautious of any encouter. Suffice to say, I believe he was utterly wrong in this case. Indeed, this I believe, that Julea had sin, yes. But that sin was not enough for her death. I’ve been asked, why I stoped her Pyre. It is because, I believe, to send her to it would have been sacrelige. We have the Pyre as a last and purely final resort. To send a soul not needing it to the flame taints the flame, a sin which shall be answered for. This was not simply my decision, as I stated, the clergy and prelates agreed. Indeed, there were but two advisors who disagreed: His Majesty and Her Holy Honor. I prayed, Dav spoke, I followed.

    And yet, there was sin later. I’ll freely confess it, as I did in the cellula, I fell to sin. It has been a wholly.. humbling experience. Often, we who sit so high in the Church forget that beneath all the robes, we are but men. Our souls are no more strengthened than the man who walks down the street. Our virtue is no inherently greater. Our hearts are not somehow protected by greats walls. Indeed, its these things that we must always remember, for two reasons. Firstly, to keep ourselves always aware and on the look out, but also to improve who we are as Priests, to remember that we are just as much a sinner as the man on the otherside of the confessional. We’re afraid to admit it, I think. As are the people.

    I offer no excuses for my actions. They were my sins, borne of human error. They are my fault, my fault, my most grievous fault. Yet, can I say I regret? I’m not sure.. I am penitent, yes. I admit the wrong. I admit that I am sorry. But, when it comes to it, I look and see that what I did, in some ways, was going to pass eventually. Once I admitted to myself my heart, I think it would not allow itself resolved. I’ve come out the wiser. One of the greater powers of Heaven is not to keep us from sin, but to transform sin to virtue. I think, in an odd way, I found a chastity in my lust. A fuller understanding of the celibacy I shall retake from its prior violation. Come the end, I love Julea Sanguine and she loved me. -That- needs no penance. -That- was not a wrong. I but wish it could have come to a better conclusion. That I had had the strength to allow myself to make the right decision sooner and left the clergy before I tried to run after and explore that love. My sin, truly, was disgracing the Church. It is for that which I wear my new brand. Its for Jules’s death that I wear the scars of my heart.

    Come the end of this, we all have lessons to learn. Forgiveness not being the least. Julea Sanguine should not have died that night. She was not treasonous. All I can say now is that I know she is in Heaven, I shall meet her there one day. I pray for His Majesty’s soul, for understanding on his part for something I frankly believe he did not understand and yet acted on nonetheless. He is a man too, I hope he never forgets that. For just as I have sinned, so shall he. He’ll have to be ready to face his conscience once he does.

    Now, I take my final penance. The cloth shall again be mine, though now properly consecrated to atonement. I’ll take whatever burden the Mother Church sees fit.. its only proper. I again am a servant, the servitude I violated. In the end, I’ll be the better for this, God be willing.

  • March 11, 2012 /  Reflections, Soundtrack

    This world is dark, Jules.

    Its full of evil, full of hurt.

    Men wander, like shades, seeking happiness.

    Seeking but a moment of love.

    I found it in you, my love.

    I was happy, if but for a moment.

    And now, dear.

    We pass into the dark.

    Don’t be afraid.

    I’m close behind.

    http://youtu.be/j6XZsau7CSk
     

  • March 9, 2012 /  Soundtrack

    love is not a victory march,

    its a cold and its a broken

    Hallelujah.

    And I remember when I moved in you,

    the holy dark was moving too

    and every breath we drew was

    Hallelujah.

    Maybe there’s a God above

    and all I ever learned from love

    was how to shoot at someone

    who outdrew you.

    And its not a cry you can hear at night.

    Its not somebody whose seen the light,

    its a cold and its a broken

    Hallelujah.

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