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Harmonious_Echos

Longitudes of Avinarr

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Longitudes of Avinarr

To all who are reading my pennings, please to recognise:

my name is Bet-Maie Liis Carronous of Avinarr, I am a Caretaker of Histories.

according to the records of my birth, I was born illegitimately to uncaring parents and placed in an orphanage in the year of 3266, and spent the majority of my young life in the care of the Librarie Nursuries. I studied under the current Master of Histories, Falrel Haatous, from the year 3257 to the year 3289, during my Lord Jeoffrey Aine the 2nd's reign. I was promoted into the ranks of Librarian at the age of 14, and was recommended to the ranks of Caretakers at the age of 19. During this time I learned such things as husbandry and ettiquate, scribing and Historical repairs, Artisic representation, and basic spellworking. I was then set at the task which is the duty of all the Caretakers: to serve the King in recording the history of this world--the countries of Avinarr, and also its sister countries to the south and northeast, Weinarr and Falinarr. The outer islands are not considered worth mentioning in most accounts, and if other continents exist on this world, we know it not.

My Lord Jeoffrey the 2nd began his benevolent reign in Avinarr at the tender age of 30 years, but such was his wisdom--and the wisdom of his cabinet of advisors--that he held the throne with his stern but gentle hand until the year 3289, when he was 94 years old. Then my Lord Jeoffrey the 2nd fell ill, of a strange withering sickness, and wisely passed the responsibilities of the kindom on to the Cabinet, and, less wisely, to Lord Jeoffrey the 3rd, his firstborn son and heir.

On the day of his death, in the month of Red Wheat, the year of 3289, the entire kingdom took to the streets to mourn his passing. The people of Avinarr, and also many in Falinarr and Weinarr, created their own way of remembering the Gentle King, by staying home from work, or, if they needed to go about, walking always with eyes lowered to the earth (in which he had been laid) and never speaking aloud. We called it, the Birthday of Sadness.

Upon the death of our King, rule of the kingdom was passed on, as was the custom, to the Heir. Our Heir, however, was Jeoffrey the third, known to the peasent folk and common peoples as Jeoffrey the Blunt--or Jeoffrey the Turd, to those who did not care if they had a price on thier heads and arrows aimed at their backs.

I, being 22 and in the service of the king for many years, had grown up attending to and playing with Prince Jeoffrey and his younger brother and sister, Gregort and Mibriel, who were twins. I became a close personal advisor and teacher to the twins, and sat in cabinet with the Nine advisors during the reign of Jeoffrey the second; I knew everything there was to know about the Royal family, thir customs, traditions and personality quirks. I could not hanve been closer had I been a princess myself. But I was never permitted to act as a part of the royal family; I was only a poor orphan, well taught by the rods of the royal Librarians, but living as I was, only by the grace of the King. I was never allowed to forget this.

If you were to trust the words of a poor Librarian scholar, I would tell you that as far as the royal children went, either Prince Gregort or Princess Mibriel would have been far more suited to rule than Crown-Prince Jeoffrey; but, you should not trust me. And now, I will tell you why...

Edited by Harmony

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The Avinarrinan calandar is made up of eight seasonal months, with the beginning of the new year during high summer, and traditionally celebrated at night.

The New Year celebration consists of the systematic washing and treating with holy herbs each person attending the festival.

This requires the full complement of Priests of Inarre, for the renewing baptising of the people. It is considered an extremely good omen if it rains (not to mention it makes the festivities much more comfortable temperature-wise). It is also customary for people to construct the sheerest, smallest, and most highly decorated clothing physically possible to wear during the event. This is partially to show (and hopefully carry over) the wealth of the family into the new year, but personally I think the main reason for such clothing is to have the least-possible bodily covering during the stifling heat in the packed streets.

The most wealthy of the commonwealth pay the Priests ahead of time to get first placement in the lains of people. The King, Royal family and higher-ranking court members take the final position in the festival, meaning that they spend the heat of the day indoors, and emerge after dusk in the relative privacy and evening cool, to take their clensing ritual.

The only thing the King does during this festival is to show up at sunrise to stand next to the High Priest of Inarre, read the ritual Blessing, and look good posing in Royal crown & cloth-of-gold undergarment. The Queen generally refuses to attend this ceremony, and children under the age of 16 are banned by law. A rash of births tend to occur two seasons after the New Year festival, just in time for the traditional Frost of Inarre celebration...

However, the week before the festival is traditionally when the census records are updated. Thus the week the New Year is the busiest time for the Historians, who are among the few who do not attend festivities, taking their ritual in the cool evening, just after the Royal family. I have been one of those, since the age of 19.

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Being a Historian of Avinarr is, I am told, somewhat akin to an earth 'Monk' or 'nun'. While our customs and traditions relate more to charts and the re-penning of ancient books, some of our deeper moral traditions run thusly, as is written in our Great Book;

No historian shall betray the confidence of the King or his family.

No Historian shall take a bribe.

No Historian or Historian's Ward (meaning all the Historians, from Adopted to Grand Caretaker of Histories) shall pen an untruth.

No Historian shall steal, lie, or commit acts of debauchery. (the last command is often overlooked during the New Year or other great festival occasions).

All Historians are responsible for their own care, behavior, and motivation.

A Historian may not marry; sexual relationships are permitted, but highly discouraged. (Also, since the women and men are housed separately and have little time for anything but work, most grow old in the pure fulfillment of an entirely un-sexual life).

All Historians answer to the King and family first, then to the Grand Caretaker, then to themselves.

A Historian shall not sit in council upon one another, or discuss another without their knowledge.

A Historian shall practise cleanliness, chastitiy, prudence, and wisdom. (practising poverty is not a rule, but we are encouraged to practise simplicity and moderation).

 

As such rules had applied to me since the day of my offical Adoption into the Order of Historians, breaking one would create a rift between myself and the other Historians, and if I were discovered, depending on my offence, I could be cast down to Librarian, or even to Adopted. Seldom had anyone committed an offence so great that they had to be excommunicated from the Order. I knew of a few Historians who chose to leave the Order voluntarily, in order to marry. Most of the young Historians have had breif relationships, which, under the patient dulling pathos of time, strict rules & hard work, have eventually lessened to the point of casual friendship, or died out completly. I was not one of those.

For my part, I have always had a hard time pretending to fit in with the more socially adept crowd; the Library and its books have always thrilled me far more than the sight of a young man in partial undress. When the New Year rolls around I tend to hide in the least conspicuous part of the city, and if I am sought out there, I retire to my quarters on some excuse--usually heat-sickness or some other similarly convenient illness. In the year of my Lord Jeoffrey the second's regrettable illness and death, I had hid myself in the Covenant Room of the palace, with a large stack of Histories in need of repair, and tools to aid my work.

Edited by Harmony

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Been meaning to say how much I like this, *Snypiuer takes out a measuring tape and stretches it as far as it will go. Stands back and judges the length. Shortens it ONE notch. Stands back and studies it again. Nods head in satisfaction. Rolls tape back up and puts it back in his pocket.* I like it a LOT!

 

Now, in keeping with my new found desire to improve my critiquing skills, I was a bit confused with the time line in the first post. Figured it out after a couple of re-reads though.

 

Can't wait to read more!

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