So this was something I was working on months ago, during an RP where Donovan was yelling at Nel. I got this really amusing image of Donovan hosting a talk show, and this is what came of it. I found it slightly amusing, but I could never really go anywhere in my head with it. But here it is:
Donovan sits on a well upholstered leather chair, its empty twin next to him. The Elduman sits with his legs crossed. He stands. He's wearing a nicely cut grey suit, sapphire cufflinks at his wrists matching his unblinking eyes. Behind him in blocky white letters across a large field of blue is "Let's Talk"
An easy smile crosses his face and he leans towards us.
"Hey," he says.
After a pause, "I'm glad you could join us today. We have a special guest."
He holds a hand up, palm facing us and says, "Which isn't to say that all our guests aren't special. But our guest today is a good friend of mine, one I've known for years, one who's personal story I've been a part of. One I'm proud to be able to give this chance to have his time to speak."
Donovan begins clapping and says, "Fellow Talkers, let's have a round of applause for my friend Eran Jenevan."
::cue off screen clapping track::
Eran steps towards Donovan and wraps his overly numerous digits around Donovan's hand. Donovan places his free hand over the Sereth's and his own and gives it a good strong shake, a pleasant smile beaming on his face. He then gestures at the two chairs and the friends sit.
The Sereth is dressed in a rumpled black suit, he runs his fingers between his neck and collar and there's a slight sheen of sweat on his brow. As we zoom in on he and Donovan, we see burn scars across most of his exposed skin. Eran shifts in his seat several times until Donovan places a pale hand on his knee.
"Hey. I'm glad you could join me today. Thank you for having the courage to share your story with us all today."
Eran clears his throat and mutters mostly to his chest, "Uh, no problem, is there uh water. I'd really like some water."
Donovan moves his hand to Eran's chin and raises the Sereth's head so he's looking forward instead of down at the floor.
"It's ok. You're ok," now looking at us he says, "we're all ok."
::cue off camera clapping track::
Eran's cat eyes flick from Donovan to us and back to Donovan.
He says, "Yeah, ok. Sure. I'm ok. Yeah."
Donovan pats Eran's knee and then clasps his hands in his lap and says, "We sure had some times together, didn't we?"
Eran nods, "Yeah. Some stuff. Things. There were wolves. Undead. Demons. Nobody ever wanted to uh go after the last two and stuff."
Donovan continues, slightly interrupting Eran, "But today isn't about us, it's about you Eran."
He pauses before saying, "Eran, I want you to tell me about the black pyramid."
Eran gulps audibly and says to his chest, "Uh, there were some pirates, one had scars. Uh, two were twins. No one could keep their names straight. Not even, uh, that one guy we don't ever talk about."
Donovan puts a finger to Eran's lips.
"I know it's hard. But we're here for you. You are strong and independent and this is your time."
Eran's eyes zero in on the Elduman's finger on his lips. The Elduman grins apologetically and clasps his hands in his lap again.
"There were uh Sereth bodies all over the place. Old bodies with bows and arrows and stuff. There were ones with guns. Long rifles, newer models and older and stuff. It was weird."
Donovan looks at us, "I can imagine your shock. No one but the pirates knew of Orcunraytrel and you come upon Sereth that had been dead for decades. How did it make you feel? Here."
Donovan faces Eran now and taps a pale finger to the Sereth's chest.
Eran's eyes flick down to his chest as Donovan slowly, almost reluctantly removes his finger and returns the hand to his lap.
Eran says, "Uhhh..."
Donovan smiles a blinding smile and gives a friendly nod.
"It was uh weird, yeah. Weird."
He gives a nod, looking for confirmation from Donovan. The Elduman nods.
"Weird. But I uh didn't really pay much attention to it. There were illusions, and a trap. Yeah the trap. A wall came flying at me for no reason I could figure out an uh..."
He trails off.
Donovan pipes up, "And Karl..."
"Oh, yeah, it uh knocked Karl into some lava. He was upset about that."
Donovan looks at us and say, "I can understand that, but you were dealing with unfathomable things. How could he expect you to watch your footing while trying to process the presence of your people in Orcunraytrel?"
"Yeah. Sure. That uh yeah, never came up."
Donovan nods several times and Eran does the same, remaining silent as he does so.
"And then..." says the Elduman.
"Oh, well yeah, we killed some shadow statue thing and found this pool of glowing water and then we found a big metal coffin with someone inside and then we killed those twins and then we left."
"What happened then?"
"Well, Gob and uh Karl went all crazy about the writing on the pyramid and stuff. I guess it was kinda like the language the Sereth and Vyanth used before they separated into two races. I didn't even know that was a thing."
"How could you be expected to? These are things from the distant past, and your simple race doesn't write anything down, they just keep oral histories. You couldn't be expected to understand what was to come next."
"Uh yeah. That. I guess uh Gob and Karl uh figured out that the writing was a list of dead and there was more writing. It was like a challenge to Sereth to come and free someone important or something."
Donovan lays a hand on Eran's knee, "Did you suspect then that it was the Briar King within the pyramid?"
Eran shakes his head, "No."
"Well, uh, we uh went in and we opened up the coffin and we found this guy, Andorian. A Nel."
Donovan nods and hisses out, "Yes. A Nel. Then?"
"Well uh, he thanked us for freeing him and stuff and said he was one of the Briar Kings and offered everyone boons. He did stuff to uh you and Karl and made Karrak immortal or something, which we never proved. So you know, for all uh Karrak knows, he's not immortal. No one ever checked. I offered, like thirty times, but he would never let me check."
"We're you shocked or surprised at all? This knowledge of a second Briar King, one who is alive and in front of you no less, on top of discovering your people had been coming to Orcunraytrel for decades. You had to be reeling? Revelation after revelation."
Donovan nods to and leans forward in his seat and takes on a classic thinker's pose as he gazes unblinkingly at Eran.
"Eran, did Andorian grant you a boon?"
"Uh yeah. He even offered one to Gob."
"What was your boon Eran?"
"I uh told him to go tell my family I was uh ok and stuff."
"Did he have a problem with that?"
"Uh no, not then."
"Not then. Indeed."
"Are you ok, Eran? Are you ready to continue?"
"Good," the Elduman puts a hand on Eran's knee, "I want you to stop if it gets to be too much. Ok?"
Donovan sits back in his chair and steeples his fingers before asking, "What happened when you got back to the fort?"
Eran gulps audibly and says, "Well, uh, the Andorian guy kept showing up at the tower."
Donovan smiles sadly, "Eran, you're safe here, this is your time. You can say as much as you want."
Eran mumbles something towards his chest.
"Eran. This. Is. Your. Time. You have the power here. You have the power to face him and all he did to you. You can throw open all the doors, expose everything to the light of day. Or you can leave them as they are. Hidden. Your pain behind locked doors with only you to bear it. We only go as far as you want, Eran. You're in control here. You say what you want to say today."
Eran mumbles more at his chest.
"But say it to our friends."
Eran's cat eyes flick vaguely towards us and then back to Donovan.
"He followed me. Everywhere. He kept asking questions about me, the Sereth, Orcunraytrel. He had so many questions. He wanted to know about what the Sereth had been up to for the past few thousand years. He asked about supernatural creatures in Orcunraytrel."
"I uh couldn't ever figure it out. I mean, why would I know more than him? He'd been there for thousands of years, and we never knew shit about anything. We kept killing Asosans for money and stuff. And boars in the woods. I think. I didn't know anything about supernatural entities. I'm a hunter."
"What was he expecting from you? Did he ever say?"
"He said he wanted my help finding Evandor."
"The other Briar King?"
Eran nods, "Yeah, uh, he said Evandor and he were the Briar Kings. He said Evandor would have followed him to Orcunraytrel when they abandoned the Sereth. He said Evandor liked to play games with mortals and uh he would be hanging around, playing games with them, and uh pretending to be a supernatural creature."
"Would it be safe to say you were stressed out by all the attention Andorian was giving you?"
Donovan's eyes a brimming with compassion as he reaches out a hand and grips Eran's hand tightly, "Was his attention unwanted?"
Eran's eyes brim with unshed tears as he nods.
"How did you cope with it?"
Eran clears his throat and says, "I uh began uh master debating. Maybe three or four times a day, usually while I was out on patrol, but sometimes in the tower when everyone was asleep. Or awake. Whenever really."
Donovan squeezes Eran's hand and asks, "Did Andorian watch you while you did?"
Eran lets out a sob and nods.