Ch. 1 – Simply Fade Away

This topic contains 8 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by Estarfigam .

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  • #5725

    Estarfigam
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    As long as there has been war there has been war, there has been wounded, sometimes the wounds are invisible.

    The story takes place two years after a major war, Estarfigam an artisan from Memphis relives the battles of long past and seeks help to end his nightmares, or weaken them.
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  • #6317
    Estarfigam
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    The barge stopped by a shrine to Ptah with an old priest offering Ptah some food. I disembarked and sat by the priest.

    “Hello, you seem troubled,” the priest said noticing me in the corner of his eye.

    “Yes, I have been having nightmares, and strange visions of the past,” I told him.

    “Is that so? Have you told your family what you see?” The priest said still not moving keeping his eyes on Ptah.

    “I was drafted into the war and I see that. It effects my pottery,” I said ashamed.

    “War happens, peace happens, sometimes we need to adapt, like clay, we are not fired yet, even at my age, when we are on our second journey then the clay of our lives are fired. When does a potter fire their pot?” The priest asked me still with his eyes on Ptah.

    “When it is right,” I said looking at the priest. There is white stubble forming on his chin.

    “Ptah may have formed us once, but there are still glazes of experience we need before our second journey. You should ask Ptah what sort of glaze you should have,” the priest said his eyes were still on Ptah.

    I got up and hugged my wife and son.

  • #6180
    Ouei
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    We boarded the barge. Karemetra was curious about the other people on the barge, running up and down the length.

    “Karmetra! Stop running around like a locust!” I yelled at our son.

    The barge captain who was reading our rough plan on which temples to visit, saw Karmetra picked him up and sat him on her knee.

    “Child, running on a boat is not safe, you could slip and fall into the river, then the hippos would eat you. Now go sit down and here is a dried date,” the barge captain said with a smile.

    “Thank you, so much, I don’t know how we can handle two of them,” I said a little tired.

    The captain smiled at me.

  • #6068
    Estarfigam
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    My wife and I will have another child. This is a truely joyous, and scarey time. I was happy when I was told Karmetra was coming as I will our daughter, but how can I be a man if I cannot keep myself together to work. Yes, I have an apprentence but how can he learn without seeing the correct techniques? Hopefully these pilgrimages might give me the blessings from the Gods I need to be a good father, for our daughter to develop fully and grow up to be just as beutiful as her mother and just as talented.

    Maybe I should learn a new medium. Maybe work in metal.  Maybe the fresh air of the river will do me some good. Consult Ptah, Hathor, Bes, Ra, Atum, and whoever else we can think of.

    We had packed our bags, and boarded a barge. The temple of Ptah wasn’t far. The god that formed our bodies, and guides our hands to make great works of art. The owner of the barge smiled at Karmetra and handed him a dried date to chew on. I informed the barge captian an our plan, and compared it with hers, it was practicly the same.

  • #6038
    Ouei
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    I have been urinating on some bags of seeds regularly. Today, I saw some wheat starting to sprout. I will be a mother of a little girl. I placed my hand to my mouth to hide my joy. I am so happy! I kissed by statue of Bes on the cheek in a sign of gratitude. The Haty-A was the first to know because she saw me skipping like a little girl. She smiled and suggested I make several sacrifices to various dieties. Best to not offend anyone. I informed her I did before for Karmetra and will again. I raced home to see my darling husband. He was making funny faces at Karmetra to make him laugh.

    “Dear, I was thinking we should go on some pilgrimages since the statue is done, we can even find someone to figure out what is troubling your heart,” I said to my husband.

    “It is worth a shot,” Karmetra could be inspired by the various styles,” He said with a smile, it was one of his better days.

    “I haven’t done this in three years or so.” I hinted.

    “Oh?” Estarfigam said interested.

    “Yes, sometime after you left for war, you remember that night,” I said in a blush.

    “Karmetra was concieved when I left,” he started to figure out what is happening, his eyes widened, “You are…”

    “Yes,” I grinned ear to ear.

    “Again?” He smiled.

    “A girl,” I smiled.

    “I’ll start packing, in the morning we will start with Hathor and Ptah’s temple.” He said with a grin.

  • #5833
    Ouei
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    Ptah help me. I love my husband, I truly do. We moved in together six years ago. He was a great potter and paint mixer, I am a great stoneworker and painter. He used to love the feel of clay under his fingers, it rushing past his fingers. He felt a connection to Ptah. He even liked to hug me with his clay covered hands. That always forced me to remove my dress and we usually became intimate afterwards. Three years ago he was drafted to take some cities he has never been to before. I have noticed he also avoids enclosed spaces. What did they do to him out there? Perhaps in three thousand years politics might evolve to no longer need wars. But I need my husband. Karmetra already wants to learn more about our trades.

    Thank goodness, the Haty-A’s(Nomarch’s) statue will give us the time to figure out how to help my dear husband, we have been too busy for the past two years taking care of Karmetra, choosing the right stone to use and carve it. My husband needs me, more than ever. I just finished painting the Haty-A, and was paid very well. I headed home watching my family gently throwing a ball at each other. Moments like this make me think the Field of Reeds has a tough act to follow.

  • #5771
    Estarfigam
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    For the safety of both Karmetra and I, we accompanied my wife to the statue she is carving. The statue of the Nomarch looked more like my wife in the body than the nomarch. The Nomarch herself looked more like a hippotamus than the figure my lovely wife was carving. But in the future only the gods will know the truth. I occupied myself by mixing paints, I spent  considerable time crushing ochre in one bowl, malachite in another, lapis lazuli in a third, chalk in a fourth, and some cinnabar in a fifth. I have made some casein from some milk curds mixed with water.

    When my wife finished carving she asked for yellow first, she loved to use yellow, especially the way I mix it, ochre with a little cinnabar. She then wanted to use a little green for the Nomarch’s eyes. Karmetra decided to play with the cinnabar powder.

    I screamed in terror.

    To me it looked like he was covered in his own blood.

    My wife grabbed me by the arms and looked deep into my eyes.

    “Dear, look at me. We are all safe. You are safe. I am safe. Karmetra is safe,” she said pulling me towards the statue.

    “Blood…” I murmured.

    “Servant, go clean their child,” the nomarch said ordering a servant to clean Karmetra.

    “I’m weak, I’m worthless, I’m broken,” I said to myself.

    “You are not weak worthless or broken, however these visions of yours are getting worse, we will do whatever we can to help you,” my wife said as the servant came back with a clean Karmetra, and handed him to me.

    “Maybe I should play ball with him until you finish,” I said still a little shaken up.

  • #5753
    Estarfigam
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    The day has started, I smelled some bread being made. Laughter outside of children playing. I washed my face, shaved my head and face and applied my Kohl. I met with my wife who had a plate of bread and fruit for me. Our son, Karmetra was covered in fig juices.

    “Well, well someone is figgy today,” I smiled at my son.

    “Dear, do you think you are up for work today? I noticed you had one of your nightmares again,” my wife said pouring herself something to drink.

    “I should be fine, making some pots, I heard one a mute kid decided to smash some pots looking for jewels,” I said with a smile before cleaning my son with a rag.

    “Ok, if you need me I will be chiseling the Nomarch’s statue. She keeps on saying I need to make her waist smaller,” my wife said with a smirk.

    “Anymore and your statue will break in half,” I said with a wry smile I took Karmetra to my pottery studio and placed the child with some toys. I started to spin the clay. My mind wandered.

    I heard the war drums, my wheel started to look like a chariot wheel, the smell of the earth entered my nostrils. I saw friends filled with arrows. One woman lost her arm her blood spilled everywhere. The people outside morphed into bleeding soldiers and the enemy.

     

    I screamed.

     

    People were looking at me, the pot I was making was thrown onto a wall near my son. He was playing a drum, and somehow I threw my work at his head. Thankfully I missed. I started to cry. I loved making pots, now, now I have strange day dreams.

    “Pathetic” an old woman said passing my window as my Kohl ran down my cheeks.

    At dinner I informed my wife about my day nightmares. She hugged me, kissed my head and said to me.

    “This statue will make us comfortable for several years, you can take as much time as you need,” my wife said with a smile.

    “What use am I? I broke down while making a pot, I could have killed our son,” I said in tears.

    “You are a good man, these nightmares for the past two years have been stressful, but I will always love you. I am thankful you missed Karmetra with that clay, but I know you need me more than you ever did before that battle,” my wife said kissing me.

     

  • #5743
    Estarfigam
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    It was a dark evening, I heard the sound of a horse whinnying. I was reminded of a battle. A horse rearing up almost trampling me. Arrows flying past my head. Blades coming for me and I raise my arm to block them thinking I have a shield. I look around. I am in bed with my wife and she is sleeping soundly on her stone pillow. I looked at the night sky. By now Ra is ready to head east, the middle of the night. I have work to do in the morning and these nightmares will not make my sleep be restful.

    I am still haunted by that battle. What they enemy has done, what I HAVE DONE.  What I could have done, what I should have done. I wonder why Ptah crafted me in this manner. Weak, worthless, broken. I wonder why my wife is still with me. She could have divorced me he day I came home, I have known others who were. I sometimes think I should just walk into the river, let the beasts destroy me completely, or maybe let the river simply deprive me of air.

    I regret stepping forward when I heard the drum, asking for recruits. Why did I live and others did not? My wife woke and saw me troubled. She hugged me. I still don’t see what she sees in me. I’m weak, worthless, broken…

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