Jahiliya of Veladorn

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Jahiliya (I)
Created August 1995
Status Inactive
Retired Around 2002
Race Human
Hometown Midgaard
Classes Ranger
Shaman
Thief
Followed Unaligned
Spouse Zrie
Relatives Sister to Saran Cerementi
Heart-sib to Cordir
Areas Written Co-Authored with Nyx:
Temple of Isiira
Cymraeg
Jahiliya.jpg

Mud Contributions:

  • Jahiliya was a superb roleplayer (Example: Shadows, An Answer), and her interactions touched many. But she wasn't simply a 'RP Chick' - she truly understood the mechanics of the mud and was a skilled addition to any group taking on a fearsome challenge.
  • Jahiliya co-wrote two zones with Nyx.


Current Description:

The devotions of others move me, but I have chosen to walk my path alone.
Not for me the solace of Kindred, or companions on the road of Mystery;
Not for me perfection and blood in the service of Nash.
My way touches all ways, my friends are many--
brothers and sisters in soul if not faith, in heart if not blood.
But where they are sworn to fight, I may stand aside;
Where they are forbidden to help, I may reach out my hand.
My choice is my own, my path is my own, my pain and my joy are my own.
For liberty, I trade family; for choice, faith.
Eyes open, hands empty, I walk my road silently, in peace.
Jahiliya is in perfect health.


WHO Lists:

Hum [ Th:13 Sh:14 Ra:11 ] Jahiliya remembers things...                                   (date unknown, approx 1996)
Hum [ Th:16 Sh:17 Ra:11 ] Jahiliya is just your imagination. 
Hum [ Th:15 Sh:14 Ra:11 ] Jahiliya is still an unconfirmed rumor. (April 15, 1996) Hum [ Ra:17 Th:22 Sh:21 ] Jahiliya searches dark caves for bats and Tyn (October 19, 1996) Hum [ Th:27 Ra:30 Sh:29 ] Jahiliya. (February 23, 1997) Hum [ Ra:30 Sh:30 Th:30 ] Jahiliya: Ohhh, the crocodile went to the dentist... (August 1997)


Character History:

My name is Jahiliya of Veladorn. I am first and foremost a shaman, but I am also thief, ranger, storyteller, and wandering bard. I do not know where I was born, or the names of my parents; when I was but two years old, I was left on the doorstep of the shaman of Midgaard. No note, no possessions but the baby-clothes I was wearing; no identifying marks save for faintly glowing golden runes on my right hand, from which my name is taken: 'Jahiliya' means 'mystery' in the tongue of the Shaman's birthplace. He took me in, as there was no other place in the city for me--he later confided to me that he had considered asking the mayor to take me, but did not want to leave a young child with a man whose relationship with his secretary was of dubious moral standing.

So my earliest memories are of watching in awe from my bed in the corner of the Shaman's hovel as he conducted his rituals--spreading intricate patterns of glowing colored sands on the floor, dancing with a stately, lithe grace belying his many years. As I grew, he trained me as his assistant, for he was old and in need of a young pair of hands and feet--though he could call upon his totems to give him the strength and quickness of a man in his prime, he preferred not to do that save for rare occasions. So I learned from him. We often went foraging in the forests around Midgaard, the Haon'Dor to the west and the Lightwood to the east, for there were many herbs he needed since he often aided the clerics in healing matters, giving much of himself in these endeavors. He also gave me the beginnings of my training as a shaman, enough that when I was seventeen, I was ready to quest to find my own totems.

I should speak here a little of shamanic magic, at least as the old Shaman taught it to me. We draw our powers from nature; but the power of nature, while vast, is uncontrolled. So it is up to the shaman to channel and direct the power she wishes to use, and to aid in that, each shaman seeks her own totems: she quests to find the theme which will guide her magic, the mold of her soul as it were. The outer form of each spell is her own to create; she does what she needs to reach that state of calm concentration necessary for casting. The old Shaman found his totems rooted in the Earth; his magics varied from rubbing a pinch of dirt into his palm, to intricate sand-paintings that took him hours to complete, to dances on the floor of the hovel, which was always left bare dirt so that even the mere act of walking was a walk in magic. As a side note, the Shaman of Harper's Landing also draws his totems from the Earth; I have often wondered if it is coincidence that two of the few shamans I know who remain living in one place are earth-casters, rooted and content not to wander.

One's totem quest is undertaken alone, both by tradition and because one's totems are a completely personal matter, meant to come from within. I wandered for a month, carrying only what I was wearing, my hunting-knife, and a small pouch which the Shaman had made for me as a quest-gift, embroidering it with runes and magic patterns; it is tradition for a shaman's mentor to give her such a pouch at the beginning of the totem-quest, empty, to be filled during the course of the journey with whatever seems fitting. During my quest wanderings, I found without surprise that I am most comfortable working with the powers of Air and its denizens; I returned with my pouch full of feathers, and with the Shaman's blessing, departed to seek further training elsewhere.

Encountering other students like myself, I was struck by the fact that many chose to align their powers with 'good' or with 'evil,' worshipping gods and assuming those gods' auras. I had always felt the powers of nature upon which I call to be neither benign nor malevolent, but balanced; and it was for this reason, among others, that I chose to remain neutral.

When I had attained the fourteenth level of shamanic magic, my life took an unexpected turn. A thief named Nyx, who was then in service to Thaygar of the Ebon Hand, offered to teach me to read and write. Now this was no mean offering; I knew that much was to be learned from books, but there had been none in the old Shaman's hovel. For all his wisdom, he had never learned to read, and so neither had I. To learn to read, I had to attain the skills of an eleventh-level thief, and so for a time I put aside my study of magic and bent myself instead to thief-craft. I found to my surprise that I enjoyed these new studies greatly: there is an alertness, a quickness of thought and movement, which one learns as a thief and which I found much to my liking.

Another turn in my life's course came when I reached the requisite thief-level and did finally learn to read. I borrowed books from anyone who would lend them, and scarce as the books were, they opened my eyes to wonders and faraway places--and, more, awakened in me a desire to see such places. The great city-in-a-mountain of the dwarves of the far north, the maze-isle of the minotaurs in the southern sea, the desert and the ancient ruined city of Thalos, the huge living tree-city of Cillidellia, all called to me. So as I had turned from my study of magic, I now turned from my efforts at thief-craft, and began learning the ranger's art, the better to wander.

One day while passing through Harper's Landing, I chanced across Saran, who through his own life's path had come to study the same disciplines as had I. Though we had met before, we had never exchanged more than greetings; but on this day, as he removed his gloves to eat his lunch, I was stunned to see upon his right hand golden runes very like to those upon my own hand. I questioned him immediately, but he knew as little of his own birth as I. Nevertheless, both of us sensed some link, and now regard each other as kin, brother and sister in life if not in blood.

It was not long after that, and once again in Harper's Landing, that I met another of the people who for good or for ill would greatly influence a portion of my life. This was a shaman named Azra, a follower of Molo the Arch- Lich and worshipper of Nash. A strange one to be sure; I do not know what he considers his own path in magic to be, but I would call him one of both Air and Fire. He is of the Aarakocran race, and travels swiftly and far as befits both those paths; and, too, there is a strange duality of soul in him which could perhaps be explained thus. After I had departed the town, wary of him, he told me that he did not attack neutrals unless harmed by them; then, the next time that we came upon each other, he tried to kill me; then, later, attempted to flirt with me; then to kill me; then to flirt...Thus was added to my life the aspect of prey, for he hunted me assiduously for many years, and only very recently has there been a cautious peace between us. Strange though it may sound, I owe him, for I learned more about survival from him than from any of my Ranger or Thief masters.

It was while I was studying under the druid Aruncus, hoping to learn more from him of the lands outside Midgaard, that I met one of the two or three people who are closest to my soul and deepest in my heart: Cordir, follower of Thaygar, Molo, and Gryphon, my heart-sister and dear companion. I cannot bring myself to speak over-much of her now, for she has departed the realms, seeking Thaygar her master to earn forgiveness for a long-past oathbreaking; her memory is too bright, too close, too pain-sharp for me to dwell on for long, just yet. Earth bear her up, Fire light her path, Water nourish her, and Air be wind beneath her wings; she has my love, and there is no more I can do for her.

Many years I spent wandering the realm, always seeking restlessly after something I could never quite name. I worked as an assistant to the dwarvenhold Librarian for a few years, fulfilling a long wish to see and know that marvelous city, and gaining much knowledge from the scrolls I helped sort and copy. I studied also under Carin and under Maja, shamans of Water and Fire respectively, seeking to further understand the powers I sought to direct; under shadowed Thief masters whose names I never knew, nor faces ever saw; learned from the silence in Deepwood and the crash of the waves on the shores of the Maelmordian Seas the difference between 'alone' and 'lonely.' Though I walked alone most often, my life was brightened by friends too numerous to count, from a vampyre lord to a small, shy, brightly mischievous thief-child.

And then came the episode which left the deepest scars, not of the body, but of the mind and soul. They are still there; such wounds may heal, in time, but the scars never fade, nor the memories. Quite simply, I fell. In love. With the dark raven-lord, who watches from far above the world, seeing all and changing the shape of the world with a lifted hand. I do not know what he saw in me, at first; perhaps he was merely amused at my temerity, a mortal seeking one of the greatest powers in the realm. But he spoke to me, not once but for hours on end, his dark raven-familiar always brooding over us, and began to seek out my company as the days passed.

We were happy together, for a time, and I began to believe that perhaps I had found what I had, never putting a name to it, sought all my life. But then the dreams began...I do not, as a rule, have the dream-sight; that is more a gift of those who follow the path of Fire, to see clearly and truly what lies ahead. But these were no ordinary dreams: spirits and powers that had guided my whole life and were the soul of all my magic spoke in symbols whose meanings I did not wish to understand, for in my heart I understood all too well, and did not wish to hear. In the dreams, I stood on a small hill in a barren, windswept landscape, my raven-lord near me, the sky dark and starless overhead. A little way off, barely visible in the dusky half-light, there was another small hill, on which stood a figured cloaked and hooded, face in shadow. All was silent save for the blowing of the wind, which never ceased; nothing moved and no one spoke.

A flight of birds--mostly ravens, falcons, and owls, but others with them as well--flew out of the western sky, descending to circle closely about the two of us as we stood on the hill. Some cried out; others made no sound at all, but merely looked at us, and looked, and looked, as they flew. This dream repeated itself for several nights; then gradually it changed, a little more each night: each night, my raven-lord stood a little farther from me, and each night the cloaked figure drew closer, and each night it seemed more as if the flight of birds circled the cloaked figure and myself, cutting between the raven-lord and me.

For one whose soul soars with the highest birds, it was a truly frightening dream; to see the bond between the raven-lord and myself breaking and to feel myself destined for another was a terrifying thing, for I had thought myself content at last. But deny as I might, the dreams grew ever stronger, ever clearer, until at last I bowed to their message, and severed the bonds between myself and the one I thought my love. And on the night I left, one final dream, a cruel parting gift from whatever spirit saw fit to grant me the dream-sight for that brief time: the cloaked figure now as close to me as my lord had been before, the birds circling about us--and a little ways off, the raven lord, bowed in grief, and alone. Then the cloaked figure put back his hood and showed me his face...

Some benevolent spirit, or some deep part of my soul, knew I would go mad if I remembered too well the pain I had caused the raven-lord--for I had no reason to give him for leaving, and no comfort to offer. So for years I forgot the dreams, and buried the pain of the memories behind walls so high none could breach them. I wandered, still, but with a change: not merely alone, but lonely. My restless soul would not let me stay in any one place for very long, so when I needed money or simply desired the distraction, I would work as a messenger, ferrying dispatches or sometimes small packages from one city to the next. It kept me on the road and kept my mind occupied, and in time, the sharp ache of half-remembered pain dulled. And so I went on.

During these years of restless wandering, an old promise came due: the promise of one of my thief-mentors, Shoya (who had also studied mage lore and warrior's skills), to sponsor me into the ancient House of Veladorn. I was assigned a quest to prove myself worthy of induction, and set about completing it, relieved to have a direction in my life. Several people aided me in its completion--Asia, who was at the time also questing to enter the House, and who now follows Lorna; Talen, a full House member, and his lady, Marisa; and Zrie, who at the time followed Lorna, and who led me to the Lost Pyramid to face the Sphinx for my quest.

As the years went by, I grew in knowledge, and gained an ever-wider circle of friends. I took up bardery--not song, for though my spirit lives in Air, my voice is closer to the cawing raven than the lilting nightingale. Though a few others have said differently...still, my domain is words, stories-- not song. I had shared song with the ravenlord, and did not wish to be reminded.

Saran departed the realm; I do not know where he has gone, or why, but I hope that he will someday return from his wanderings. Perhaps he has gone to seek our home. Azra and I made peace--I think. I have learned far too much caution with that one to ever be wholly at ease, but I will take peace wherever I can find it. Zrie and I grew closer in friendship, and began wandering together, for he had as winged a spirit as I--though he is mage and not shaman, he is a son of Air in many respects, and the spirits of Air have favored him with a falcon, Talessir, who travels with him always. He is also a son of the Elements in that he can see their balance; he had been unhappy aligning his powers for some time, and sought--and finally received--release from his worship of Lorna, joining me on the Gray Path. He asked me to wed him one night; and I, having been on the point of asking him the same, agreed. I did not at this point yet remember the content of the dreams that had so shattered me, years earlier; did not even have the shadow of a thought of the cloaked figure. Cordir wed us, calling on all the Elements to seal and bind us, soul and body, and thus it was, thus it is, thus it shall be. When, not long after the wedding, my dream-memories were returned to me, I recognized Zrie as the cloaked figure, who had revealed his face to me in that last terrible dream. Though the knowledge shook me and opened for a time my old wounds, it made no new ones.

And so I go on, now, no longer either lonely or alone. I speak but seldom to the raven-lord; some things are better left in the past. Zrie and I are together. Together we grieve for Cordir; together we face life's troubles; together we taste life's joys. May your life's path be as long and as blessed.

Earth bear you up, Fire light your path, Water nourish you, Air be wind beneath your wings.

Jahiliya

[Note: This history was written in the fall of 1997. Many things about the characters described herein has changed, as well as the mud itself. In this story, where it says 'neutral', the equivalent is 'unaligned.' Cordir is described as being 'lost' because for a while, that fall, she quit the mud for a while.]


Trivia:

  • She was the first female TFC player (biologically female player, not female character - and the 7th player EVER) to reach level 50. She was created in mid-1x, and reached 50 prior to 3x being implemented in the fall of 1997 - who lists show her already level 50 on 6/8/97.

  • She was the first (known) female to reach level 50 without ever being PK'd. (This, despite a gruesome vow from Azra of the Black Conclave, who, passionately in love with her, swore he would have his way with her, 'dead or alive'... and he preferred dead...)

  • She remained Unaligned the entirety of her mudding lifetime, and was one of the founding members of House Veladorn. She was also a member of IPS.

  • She could type faster than most folks could think. Daelin and she used to get into vicious trivia contests, seeing who could out type the other. (It was often a toss up.)

  • She had a positively wonderful sense of humor, and an incredible INFO. One of her favorite things was to interject herself humorously into the conversations of friends which she had caught a snippet of on INFO.

  • Jahiliya wore the same red dress on her wedding day - marrying Zrie - that Cordir wore at her wedding to Keller Amberlin D'Augustine: The Wedding of Jahiliya & Zrie

  • Jahiliya was part of the first group to kill the Tempest.

  • Jahiliya is specifically mentioned in Cordir's temple, The Sanctuary of Fate, in the Gold thread.

  • Jahiliya is specifically mentioned in Thaygar's Temple in his office.

Player Provided Information:

Tokugawa says, 'I wish I could type faster...'.
Tokugawa says, 'and accuratly'.
Cordir says, 'just find a potion of Aspect of the Jahiliya. You'll type a billion words a minute.'.
(09/28/2001)


Quotables:


Personal Timeline:

As of 02/21/2000: Jahiliya of Veladorn, Destined. This one has a rock., had played for 1932 hours. (level 50)
As of 01/28/1998: Jahiliya of Veladorn had played for 1864 hours. (Level 50)
As of 10/30/1997: Jahiliya says 'Eat the yellow pepper!' [Veladorn], had played for 1859 hours (level 50)
As of 10/24/1997: Jahiliya wonders who pushed you over. [Veladorn], had played for 1857 hours (level 50)
As of 02/09/1997: jahiliya says Back to work! (Tynheckler, riftdodger), the Human level 26 Shaman, level 30 Ranger, level 25 Thief had played for 1506 hours
As of 12/14/1996: Jahiliya of Veladorn walks the grey road., the Human level 22 Shaman, level 22 Thief, level 26 Ranger had played for 1249 hours