The Cracked Die Podcast - Episode 170c - My Immortal

Episode 8 April 27, 2023 00:11:55
The Cracked Die Podcast - Episode 170c - My Immortal
The Cracked Die Podcast
The Cracked Die Podcast - Episode 170c - My Immortal

Apr 27 2023 | 00:11:55

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Show Notes

Thank you for your kindness and patience while we got this one out. The last couple weeks have been doozies for us over here but we still wanted to get this piece out to you ASAP! 
Here's a peek into something ELSE Brienna was up to in those five months! 

 

Game and Adventure Path by Paizo Publishing- www.paizo.com
Background music provided by Syrinscape - https://syrinscape.com/ 
Sound effects licensed courtesy of Epidemic Sound - www.epidemicsound.com
Theme music by Angelo Di Loreto - https://angelodiloreto.com/
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Episode Transcript

[Cracked Die Theme] Haya: Hello lovely friends! As promised from last week, I have a minisode for you as well as a full episode that is dropping at the usual time. I just wanted to come back on here and apologize profusely for the delay. As I said last week, when it rains it really pours, huh? Umm [nervous laughter] either way, I just wanted to take a moment before I send you guys over to shout out both Cassandra. I was panicking last week that what I had written was not good enough for the episode and Cass, being the incredible creator and writer that she is, said “I got this, don’t worry,” and took what I wrote and elevated it to be just perfect and just what I really wanted to convey. I also wanted to give a shoutout to my wonderful husband Matt who once more embodied Brienna’s mentor, Flynn Fairwind. So thank you so much to you both, this minisode would not be possible without you guys. But without further ado, I hope you enjoy this minisode titled: My Immortal. [Music continues to play out, Haya returns quietly, shyly:] Yes, don’t judge…I was totally the Evanessence child growing up. ANYWAY, My Immortal! The torrent that doused Citadel Altaerein was enough to bow her healing spires. Brienna waited until her companions had retired to their dormitories and the raucous goblin hubbub had faded into gentle snoring before she slipped away. Fully armored, a letter detailing the time and place where to meet clutched in her left hand, Sarenrae’s champion crept to the Citadel’s sub basement. The hushed mystical hum of Alseta’s Ring greeted her like a chorus of watchful sentinels. How fitting it was that the last time she saw Flynn was under similar circumstances, a night where she could not distinguish her tears from the downpour. Taking a deep breath, Brienna scanned the hall of portals for any sign that her friends may have decided to follow. When she found no evidence of her concern, she took a scintillating glass orb from a pouch. She had purchased it from the wizard whose services they had hired to get to Korvosa after Twin-Talon’s brother beckoned them home. It could tap into the arcane energy of an aiudara to allow a quick teleport, and it would maintain a charge for a while after that, offering a brief window for a return journey before becoming inert. At least Brienna hoped it would do that. Her trust in arcana was small at best. She squared her pauldroned shoulders and traced her finger along the runes etched into the glass. Mystic energy swirled around her, and suddenly she felt herself pulled far away from Isger, back to her home, where she and her friends had laid the ghosts of the past to rest. Well… not all of them. A deep nocturnal fog shrouded Korvosa. It curled around Brienna, obfuscating her presence in the city streets as it so often had during her childhood. Twin-Talon had taught her a Shoanti rhyme to ward off the sight of others, but she had sadly forgotten it. Once she reached the hallowed steps of her Lady’s temple in the Heights District, the mist stopped dead at her feet. She marveled for a moment at the feat of divine magic possible only thanks to clerics of Erastil and Gozreh. It was with their connection to both deities that Sarenrae’s temple kept temperate weather year round. Even at this late hour, a cleric was on duty. Brienna exchanged pleasantries with the man, who then led her to the offices of Flynn Fairwind. He announced her to the guards at the door and they nodded, appraising her for any threats. Thankfully, they had been previously notified of her expected arrival tonight. Brienna in turn couldn’t help but notice the rise in security since she had been here last as a child under Flynn’s tutelage, back when he had just begun courting then-Field Marshal Cressida Kroft. The cleric’s knock and her mentor’s warm, familiar “come in!” pulled her out of her nostalgia and into his offices. “Breeze!” Flynn said warmly once the door had shut behind her and the pair were truly alone. He stood and limped around the desk as he had always done, his well-built arms outstretched. Flynn looked about the same as he ever had: still handsome, still the same warm ember in his azure eyes, though there was a bit more grey at his temples and in his chestnut beard. “King-Consort,” Brienna responded a little dryly with a practiced Korvosan salute. A frown flitted on Flynn’s brows, his steps to her faltering momentarily. “Come now, Bri, there’s no need for such formalities. I haven’t seen you in an age! Did you grow taller somehow? Stronger, surely!” He resumed his journey to give her a paternal hug. Brienna held up a gauntleted hand, halting him in his tracks once more. Though she currently seethed, she knew that if she allowed him to embrace her, she would not have the strength to get through what she came here to talk about. A hurt look crossed his features but was gone as soon as it had blossomed. He instead leaned back, his thighs against his desk, and watched her carefully. “What’s happened?” Now that Brienna was here, standing before him, the weight of all that had transpired threatened to suffocate her. The fire at the Call of Heroes in Breachill. Temod’s belongings neatly waiting for her under the canopy of the Mwangi Expanse. Finding out what truly had occurred to Silver… and seeing Aurelius again. His eyes filled with malice, with… “You lied to me.” It was all she could manage. Flynn’s face remained impassive. The only indication of emotion was the small crease between his perfect brows and his head cocking slightly to one side. A slight widening of his eyes with… pain? “I would choose your next words very carefully, Brienna.” His tone was flat and measured, not as her friend and mentor, but as the High Priest of the Temple of Sarenrae and King-Consort of Korvosa. “Lying, as you very well know, is an anathema to the Dawnflower and Her values. It is a serious accusation.” Brienna took a deep breath and took a step further into the room, knowing she was walking the razor’s edge with her outburst but before she could think further, it all began to unfurl from her. All the hurt from the last few months… no, years. “I brought Aurelius to you that night. You said there was nothing more you could do. That he was gone. You stood by me at his funeral and held my hand. You let me cry on your shoulder when I needed to mourn and miss him. But you lied. He didn’t die that night. He turned into a monster and I was so, so stupid. I was stunned to see him there, beneath the Temple of Pharasma. And to think that it was my fault… that every time it was my fault because I believed he was dead. But no, instead he turned Silver and caused Temod and Pondwatcher—my friends—to leave. Ooo screams in her sleep at night because of him and his unholy filth. And he was behind bringing the old queen back. It’s my fault I cannot protect my friends. It’s my fault that he—“ Somehow Flynn crossed the distance between them, slipped through her guard like a hidden knife. But there was no blade, only his arms around her shoulders. He was not as strong as he had once been, but he knew Brienna well enough to know when the shield she had barricaded herself behind began to crack. As he met her gaze, Brienna saw tears in the corners of his blue eyes. Her knees buckled. She buried her face in the warmth of his shoulder and began to sob. “It isn’t your fault,” Flynn murmured. “I had no idea Aurelius still lived, nor did you. I did everything in my power to heal him, to cure him. His wounds were extensive. I watched the life leave his body. I’m so sorry, Breeze. I wish I had known. I did not lie to you. I would never lie to you. I laid that boy to rest and prayed for his soul to find peace in Sarenrae’s care.” “I loved him,” Brienna whispered. Her body shook. It was rare that she allowed herself these moments, as she was so often a bulwark to others. “I know you did.” Flynn kissed her forehead, and the two stood in silence for a time. He blotted his own tears on his sleeve, and offered a handkerchief to Brienna. She took it and wiped her face. Finally the pair stepped apart from one another. Flynn limped over to his chair and sat. Brienna felt a leaden calm settle over her. A thought came to her that would have infuriated her only moments earlier. Now, the realization was just a dull ache. “Perhaps Aurelius meant to deceive us both. If he had already succumbed to the darkness, maybe he needed to sever ties to his old life so that he could continue his dark deeds elsewhere.” “You may be right.” Flynn shifted in his seat. “The Dawnflower demands that we do what we can to aid others on their path to redemption. Sometimes, however, there are those who will never be willing to accept it.” “I will… do what must be done.” Her breathing came a bit easier, the tension of rage dissipated. Still, the thought of it pained her. Flynn gave her a wan smile. “I will do what I can to help. There’s one lesson I can impart, while you’re here. It came in use when protecting Uts—I mean Twin-Talon’s brother, Rides-the-Wind, whenever he would go diving headfirst into trouble. If I taught you a spell, would you be amenable to it?” Brienna nodded. It would be good to learn from her mentor once again. “I’d like that very much. And I’m sorry for—” “No. You have nothing to apologize for. Here.” Flynn gestured for Brienna to give him her hand, which he took between both of his own. “This spell is about sacrifice, one of the Healing Flame’s greatest virtues… one to which I’m afraid you will be called upon to embody much more.” His eyes were kind, but serious. “Are you ready, Brienna Soldado, Champion of Sarenrae?”

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