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Hughe of the Purple Robes (Character Story)

High Rock fared relatively well during the long interregnum following the fall of the Second Empire in the Second Era

Hughe was born in High Rock, to a wealthy family with strong ties to nobility. He was sickly, and showed more desire to read books and do math than to work the fields and insure his family name stayed strong. It mattered little to his mother, Muriele, who had two other sons that would carry on the name in the similar manner of their father. She shielded him from his brothers as much as she could, and they respected her enough to keep their hands off her youngest child. Of course that only added to their dislike of him, and caused a jealousy that teetered on hate.
Hughe's father, Birane Yvienne, had little use for him, as Hughe could barely remember the two ever really speaking more than two sentences at a time to one another. His interest in the stars and in how nature truly worked was of little interest to a farmer who made his wealth by the callouses on his hands, the sweat on his brow, and the strength of his back. Sure, knowing how the seed grew and what it needed to grow was of good use, but the make up of the plant itself mattered only to sissy mages and the lazy philosophers. He once heard his father explaining to his mother that he loved Hughe far more than she, and refused to allow him to grow up so weak and helpless. He blamed her for what Hughe was becoming, something Hughe did not understand at the time.
He remembered her sobs, and how his father made no attempt to comfort her.

Hughe was ten and the year was 572, when Hughe first heard the name Ada'Soom Dir-Kamal, The King Among Demons. His father was going on about how magic created such creatures and that was all that it was good for. Hughe said little, as he ate his meal. His brothers were joking about something among themselves, paying very little attention to any of it.
"They come from across the seas, not the Abyss," his mother said.
Hughe's father eyed her a moment, and looked ready to toss his plate of food at her, before he calmed back down. He was not a man that enjoyed being corrected.
"You know your problem? You know too much about magic," he responded, as the table got really quiet. "You know too much about magic, and you are trying to turn this boy here into a demon calling Abyss loving mage like your father!"
Hughe's mother looked to her sons at the table, a bit shocked that he had said such. Hughe and his brothers were shocked as well, as they never heard anything about their mother's father.
It was then Hughe realized his father meant him, when he said "this boy".
"None of your sons are going to be mages," she said low, but then looked her husband in the eye. "You dear, are the only one putting such in any of their minds."
"You boys may as well know what stock your mother comes from, in case it tries to rear it's ugly head in this house," Birane said, a smile coming to his lips.
Muriele looked shocked at first, then her own eyes narrowed, as if daring the man to go on.
Of course Hughe's father would not let a woman keep him silent.
"Reachmen, that is where she comes from. I saved her from those witches and how does she repay me? See how she acts to me boys? Your mum is a reminder to never fall for a savage, and keep your line pure."
Muriele slowly got up, never looking to her husband or her boys, and left the room.
"Go join your mum, boy," Birane told Hughe.
As Hughe left the room, he heard Birane explaining to his brothers that Muriele was not really their mother, and he was sorry he ever brought the curse into their family home.

"Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
"Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
"That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
  • Krist

    The trees were twisted, and gave off a strange feeling in this part of the woods. You could feel it slope downward after a pace. The ground became more damp, and the air more humid. Hughe was warned to never travel too deep within this area, as the ground gave way to the moors, where a wicked battle had once taken place. His mother told him the trees were twisted because of some of the terrible things that frequented the swamp.

    "Evil comes and evil goes Hughe, but sometimes it leaves behind something of itself. Stay from there, you hear. You would not like to even glimpse some of the things that may live there," Muriele warned.
    "Have you," Hughe asked.
    "Have I what," his mother said, putting more clothes on the line.
    "Ever seen the evil in there," Hughe asked.
    Muriele looked to her son in a strange way, as if judging whether he knew something he should not. His eyes met her eyes, but they were innocent.
    "Of course not, I am too smart to enter that wicked place," she said, smiling at him in a way that caused Hughe to laugh.

    Hughe looked through the trees, where it was darker and damper, then back to the way he came where it gradually grew lighter, with sun rays dancing on the forest floor. He came here often for the quietness, and the relief from his brother's constant torture. No, they did not always hurt him or even acknowledge him, but Hughe saw them as dullards, and that was tortures enough to a learned young man, even if he was only ten.
    His mother came from the Reachmen, or so his father said only a few weeks before. His brothers, of course, couldn't just let this new knowledge go without finding other ways of making the ten year old feel completely unwanted. His father did nothing to stop them, his mother stayed locked in her room most of the time, though he swore he saw her leave the house at night several times of late.
    Hughe sat, at what to him, seemed the line between the woods and the swamps. There was nothing really logical about it, he was ten years old, and this was where his mind told him the line was. Inside the darkness was where his mother said was the scary things in the wicked place. He was not sure if she told him that just to scare him or if she was serious, but he didn't figure on trying to find out.
    He was already braver than his brothers, who dared not even step in the woods. This comforted him as much as being alone did.
    "Hughe," the voice called.
    Hughe looked about, unsure if he truly heard it, or if it was just the wind brushing the through the leaves. He suddenly felt as if the woods were closing in on him.
    "Hughe," the voice said again, and it was far more distinct than before. It sounded like his mother, but Hughe could not tell if it was coming from deeper into the swamp or from the other way.
    It did not matter, Hughe was not sticking around to find out.
    "Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
    "Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
    "That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
  • Krist
    "Are you kidding, I have always been scared of the dark. However, the darkness I fear, you know nothing about." - Hughe

    The days were growing longer as summer set in. While his brothers enjoyed the warmer days, Hughe despised the heat. He did his chores early, sometimes starting before daylight, to insure he did not have to be out in the hot air. This was not odd, but was different was that his father did little to insure he stayed working. In the past, if his father knew he was done with his chores, he would find harder chores for the ten year old, to insure he stayed working throughout the day.
    For some reason, things were different.

    Hughe noticed his father was preoccupied. He had little time to speak to any of them, and did little in the way of remarking how weak and useless his youngest son was. For the first time the man was looking all of his 50 winters, and maybe even then some. His brothers remained to themselves, not even joking and playing sword fight as they often did. They looked tired as if they had not slept.
    Only Hughe and his mother seemed to have the same vitality they always had.
    "What is wrong with them," Hughe asked Muriele.
    "Nothing Hughe, it is hot and they are not smart enough to do their work early," she said, a smile on her face as she winked at him.
    She always made Hughe feel the most wanted.
    Still, Hughe suspected there was more to it.

    Hughe overheard his brothers talking about their nightmares one day in the barn, they did not realize he was in the west stall, using the afternoon light to read a book about potions that his mother gave him. She told him to be careful and not let his father see it, as he would not appreciate it at all, but she knew Hughe would enjoy it.
    They spoke of dreams that made them scared even when awake. At first Hughe thought they knew he was there, and was only saying these things to scare him, but then one began to cry.
    Neither of them ever cried.
    Hughe smiled, this was definitely something he could use against them. It wasn't often he had a come back to the older boys constant teasing. It took only a couple of days for him to find a way to use this information.

    Hughe's knees were shaking as he still heard the laughter of his brothers in his ears. It did not work out as he had planned. He mocked them and their nightmares and even crying over them. This almost got him beat up, but instead a more devious plan was used against him. The most of their nightmares involved the woods and beyond, deeper into the swamp. When Hughe laughed at them and told them that he was brave enough to enter the swamp when they were not, they knew they had him. He was dared, and mocked when he tried to talk his way out of it.

    Now, however, he was back in the woods, and back at his line between the peaceful, dry wooded area with it's tall trees, and the dark damp area, with it's twisted trees, that lead deeper into a swamp. He waited for the call, to hear his name whispered to him on the wind.
    He almost wished he had heard it. He did not, not at first, not when he crossed the line, and step deeper into the shadowy woods. One last look back only brought remarks of his cowardliness from his brothers. Yells of how weak he was. Sure, he was further than they dared, though they could still barely see him. He could turn around and explain that he, their younger brother, still went deeper into the forest then they.
    Still, Hughe wanted more. With a smile that he was not sure if they could see or not, Hughe turned back, and with new purpose, marched into the woods. He could hear his brothers now hollering that he would get in trouble, that they were not suppose to go that far. No, they were not concerned, it was just their way of convincing themselves that they were right for not following.

    "Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
    "Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
    "That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
  • Krist
    Vaermina is a Daedric Prince whose sphere is the realm of dreams and nightmares, and from whose realm issues forth evil omens. Some have also claimed her sphere ties somehow to torture. Her plane of Oblivion is "Quagmire", it is described as a nightmare realm, here every few minutes reality shifts and becomes ever more horrifying.

    Hughe could not remember how he found himself at this one spot. He left his mocking half brothers behind and just walked in generally a straight path, or so he was sure of. As he got deeper into the damp woods the trees cut out the sun, leaving it to seem more like late afternoon than mid day. His fear rose with each step, but something would not let him turn back. He felt it.

    He felt her.

    Before him was a make shift alter of sorts, with dead animals about it, apparently given as an offering. Something about it though stunk foul and of disease, as if the animals in life were not well to begin with. He should not be here.

    Still, he felt her, and he felt her power.

    Hughe could not say what exactly it was he felt, or why he felt as if it was a woman, but he knew he was not just making this up in his mind. He was well read, and he read of these things before. Shrines to Daedra and Aedra and many other powerful being that somehow contained a part of that being. His brain was screaming at him to run.

    Hughe knew he should turn and flee, but he felt her power.

    Evil thoughts began to enter the mind of Hughe, as he approached the alter. Every thought was worse than the last, and Hughe knew he should be horrified, but instead he found himself quite intrigued, as he reached toward the alter.

    She was standing there, just out of his sight. He could feel her.

    Hughe stopped for a moment. Something told him that to touch the alter could change his life forever. He would see things that he never saw before, and know things a boy of his age should never know.
    Hughe felt the hand flow down his arm, bringing chills to his body. He smelled the wretched scent, and felt the wretched sensations even within. He felt things a boy should not feel, for years to come. The breath on his neck was hot and fevered, and the smell was rancid and of decay. The hand moved his hand ever closer to the shrine, not forcing him to touch it, but inviting him to do so.

    Still, the power.

    Hughe's hand made contact with the alter, and every nightmare he ever knew seemed like nothing compared to the sights he now saw, the things he now felt. He felt the urine running down his leg. He could not scream, he could not run, and on this day, Hughe knew what complete terror felt like.

    Edited by Krist on March 25, 2016 1:50AM
    "Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
    "Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
    "That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
  • Krist

    A few weeks had passed since Hughe found himself in the wooded area, near that alter. He had become sick, and had a fever that lasted for several days before breaking, leaving him in a weakened state.
    His mother said she was just thankful he was alive. His brothers promised him everything from extra sweets to doing his chores if he simply refrained from telling their parents that it was they that coaxed him into going into the woods alone. While Hughe graciously accepted their offers, he had no intent of telling anyone anything. It was his secret, and his fevered dreams lead him to believe that power rested there, a power that he could be a part of in time.

    Hughe noticed his brothers and his father were not feeling so well either. They were not as sick as they had been, but they seemed far more tired than normal. His mother on the other hand was more cheerful than he remembered her being for a long time. She said it was because he was feeling better, and her worst fears were not met. She dismissed Hughe's concern for the others, saying the summer was simply wearing on them.

    As soon as Hughe was strong enough, he made his way to the woods again. The nightmares he had since the initial visit to the altar were horrific, but he was able to endure them, and eventually his fears lessened. He could not say why he was so drawn, but he was.
    As Hughe neared the clearing he heard someone's voice, as if they were chanting something. He slowed his pace, and thought to turn back, but his own curiosity was really getting to him. He slowly made his way to the alter, noticing the trees looked far more bent and dark than he remembered. Some even looked to be watching him, though he knew that had to be his imagination.
    Still a part of Hughe kept asking why would he want to return when the last visit almost killed him.

    Hughe was close enough that he could see a figure kneeling before the alter. It was a woman. A naked woman. She had sickly sores all over her back, and her hair was missing in patches. Hughe could not make out what she was saying, but he watched as she laid a small carcass, an animal of some sort, on the altar. She touched the alter with her own hands, and began to writhe in agony, or pleasure, the ten year old could not tell.
    He did know he should not be watching this.
    Hughe began to back away, and he heard the snap of the twig that he left foot broke. While it really made a small sound, it seemed like thunder to the young man that wanted nothing more than to leave this place unnoticed.
    The woman stopped for a moment, as if listening, but never looked about.

    This time Hughe turned and hurried away.
    "Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
    "Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
    "That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
  • Krist
    Hughe sat in the sun by the lake, a girl his age sat with him. They were just talking, but even Hughe knew the conversation was above the head of most ten year olds.

    "He isn't your father Hughe, nor are they your brothers", she said to him.
    "I know that," Hughe replied, having heard his father tell his brothers that very thing.
    "He took her in, along with a small child just born, ten years ago. He already had children with another woman, but she died."
    Hughe looked to the girl, wondering how in the world she could know such a thing.
    "Look, a fish jumped," she clapped, pointing to the lake where Hughe only now saw the ripple. She suddenly seemed his age again.
    "I know a secret you do not know," the girl said, after the smile faded from her face. This time Hughe was watching the lake, in hopes to also see a fish jump.
    "You don't," Hughe said, rolling his eyes, though she knew more than he thought she would.
    "I know who your mother is," she said, her face turning to his, her eyes showing far more wisdom than a ten year old girl should have.
    "That isn't secret," Hughe said, shaking his head.
    "Sure it is, you just do not know it," the girl said, a grin forming on her lips.
    Hughe looked to her now, trying to figure out what she meant. He recognized her, but could not say why. Nothing about her seemed real. She had on a sun dress that seemed too large for her, as if she was wearing her mother's clothes. Her big brown eyes would shift colors at times, or so it seemed to Hughe. He was not sure if it was just the sun playing tricks on him though.
    He did know he had never seen the lake before in his life.
    "Oh look Hughe," she called, a big smile on her face as she stood and pointed to the lake.
    Hughe looked in horror as the lake began churning with thousands upon thousands of snakes. Then, as if the lake simply could not hold the creatures anymore, they began spilling out and away from the lake.
    Away from the lake and toward Hughe.
    Hughe backed away quickly but tripped over something, quite possibly his own feet. The girl just stood there, her arms extended toward the lake and the snakes. She began to writhe as the snakes crawled over her, biting her legs, then torso, then eventually her face.
    "Isn't this wonderful Hughe," she said, but Hughe had no plans of standing about waiting to see how wonderful it was. He was back up and running ......

    ....and woke up in his bed, full of sweat, wrapped in soiled linens. Since he saw the woman in the woods, his nightmares had increased to a point that sometimes he did not know if he had even been asleep when he had the nightmare.
    Edited by Krist on March 30, 2016 7:11PM
    "Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
    "Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
    "That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
  • Krist
    Hughe stumbled from his bed, feeling more tired it seemed than when he actually went to bed. The sun was shining through the windows, but it have more of an eerie feel to the house. He looked about but was unable to find anyone in the house.
    Outside the animals appeared to not have been tended to, in fact, much of the farm appeared to be in disarray. He did not remember it getting this bad, but he did stay inside alot since he had been sick.
    Hughe thought to call out for his brothers or his parents, but decided not to. He hated for any of them to think him weak. Instead he began to look about for them.

    Hughe heard noise in the barn as he approached it. Someone was muttering something he could not understand. It was odd, and sounded like his father. He almost stopped and turned around, but decided to see what was going on instead. Something made him wonder if this was not just another dream, another nightmare, but it felt very real.
    As Hughe entered the barn he found his father in the middle of one of the stalls. The stall was full of manure, as no one had been doing their chores for some time. He sat there, covering himself in the manure, muttering intangibly until he saw Hughe.
    "What do you want boy, is everything okay? Are you feeling better? Do you want to do your chores now, or you planning to play sick longer?"
    "What are you doing," Hughe asked, almost frozen in place.
    "Can't you tell what I am doing boy? I am eating cow dung and rubbing it all over me, how stupid are you?"
    "Why are you...." Hughe began, but his father began to rise. He was reaching for the pitchfork, but kept slipping in the manure.
    "Come here boy, help me up," the man said, slipping again as if he were drunk.
    Hughe ran out of the barn.

    Hughe ran to the back of the house, hoping to find his mother doing the clothes. Instead he saw his brothers by the back steps, both on all fours looking at something on the ground. They seemed very interested and paid no attention to him as he approached. It was not until he got close enough that he saw the boys were not looking at something, they were eating something. They were digging up worms and fighting over them, both had mouthfuls already with the slime dripping down the corners of their mouths.
    "You can't have any," the oldest said after he swallowed, looking to Hughe. The other looked over and shook his head, as if agreeing with the oldest.
    "Where is mother," Hughe asked, backing away from the two.
    "The *** is not our mother," the oldest said.
    "You are not our brother," the other said.
    "She told us about you and what you are," the oldest sneered. "You want our worms, don't you!"
    Hughe just turned and walked away, leaving to two to now giggle over how fat a worm was or how juicy another looked.
    "I must be dreaming," Hughe said as he entered the house.

    Hughe could not say how he ended up in the woods. He remembered leaving his brothers to eat worms, and suddenly here he was, in the clearing deep in the woods. He was damp all over from the night dew. His hair was stuck and matted to his head.
    He could not help but wonder how he could have gotten there.
    "Come Hughe," his mother said from behind him.
    Hughe looked back to see her standing by the alter, a smile on her face.
    "Momma, what is happening," Hughe asked, not wanting to move from his spot.
    "Come to me, and I will explain it all," she said, her arms opened to him. She had on a white tunic that went to her knees, and nothing else. Her naked body beneath was silhouetted by the dim light. She was not as damp as he was, her hair was still dry as was her tunic.
    'How long have I been here," Hughe asked, doing as his mother bid.
    "Not long sweety," she said.
    "Kneel here," she said, helping him down in front of the altar. "Put your hands on the altar, do not be afraid. It is okay."
    Hughe did was he was told, though he was very scared due to what happened before. As his hands touched the alter, everything went dark, then white. So white and so bright that he could not see any better than he could in the dark.
    "Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
    "Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
    "That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
  • Krist
    "Even as we speak your mother is going back to your house and she will kill everyone. Then you will go home to find her with me. She will kill you Hughe," the little girl said, looking about as if insuring no one would over hear her.
    "Who are you," Hughe asked, and assumed this was just another nightmare.
    "It doesn't matter. I am telling you the truth, and you must believe me. Your life is in danger."
    "Why are you helping me," Hughe asked.
    "For my own reasons. Now wear this," the girl said, holding out a golden ring.
    "What is it," Hughe asked. It had strange writing on it that seemed to blaze from it.
    "It wont hurt you, but you must accept it from me. It will help you."
    Hughe took the ring and slipped it on his middle finger.
    "Now go back to the house, quickly," the girl commanded.
    Hughe found himself on the wet ground, his hands still on the altar.
    His mother was gone.

    It seemed to take Hughe forever to get out of the woods and back to the farm house. In truth it was only a few minutes. The candles were still lit inside, and Hughe could not even fathom what time it was. Shadows danced across the inside of the living room as he entered. Nothing seemed out of place at first, except that no one was around. He then entered the cooking area and found his father sprawled across the table. In his back was a gaping wound.
    Hughe wanted to run, but something kept him moving.
    He found his brothers dead in their room, both of the necks were cut, probably as they slept. He closed the door and headed upstairs. Now he heard low murmuring as if two people were talking.
    "I did the sacrifices, and your lord promised me your service," he heard his mother saying.
    "You did not do everything," another voice said, but it was strange and seemed inhuman.
    "I waited so many years for this, and she promised," his mother stressed.
    "You did not finish it yet," the other said.
    Hughe opened the door slowly, at first thinking only to take a peek. However the door kept going, and he found himself standing there, his mother and some creature, obviously female but not human, looking at him.
    "You did not finish it," she said again, but this time she was looking to Hughe, as if addressing him.
    "No Hughe, you should have stayed at the altar," his mother began to cry.
    Hughe noticed the creature was in the middle of some strange markings and writings, and stayed there as if unable to move. It, and his mother, had no clothes on. His mother was covered in blood, more than would have just splashed on her it seemed.
    Hughe walked to his mother, looking to see if she had any injuries, there was so much blood.
    "Oh dear, you should not have come," she said, holding her hand out to Hughe. Hughe noticed in the other hand she had a strange dagger, that was bent and twisted, with ugly runes and writings on it.
    "Mother," Hughe said, walking up to her now. She seemed distraught, but her face was becoming more stern, as if she knew what she had to do.
    "I am sorry baby," she said, trying to smile and comfort him.
    Hughe reached, as if reaching for her, and she reached back toward him. He could not say what gave him the notion, but instead of embracing her, he pushed. Not hard, just enough to cause her to stumble backwards.
    Muriele looked a bit shocked at the push, then confused. Hughe never acted out as such. She then looked down to see the runes and writings on the floor, in front of her.
    It was then Muriele realized she was inside the sigil.
    Muriele screamed and tried to get out, but the creature caught her by the hair and pulled her back. She could no longer move, and dropped to her knees, the creature holding her up by her hair.
    "Very good Hughe, very good," the creature said, then both were gone.

    Hughe looked down to the golden ring on his middle finger. The markings no longer shown, but he knew they were there.

    He knew they were power.
    "Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
    "Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
    "That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
  • Krist
    A grown man looked to the ring on his middle finger, golden with runes and writings only he could see. His white hair blew in the wind, even as his purple robes and cloak popped behind him. The ring he wore was powerful for many reasons. He remembered the night he had received the ring, he was only ten years old at the time. Now he was thirty five, though only eleven years had passed on Nirn. The time he spent in the Oblivion Plane aged him, while no time passed on Nirn.

    Hughe looked at the land he was raised on for ten years, nothing of the farm that he lived on remained.

    The daedra that took the lady that he thought was his mother had given him the ring, in an effort to bind him to her. Instead, in the end, he was able to bind the daedra now to him. He would call on her when he desired, but it always took something out of him to call on such a strong daedra. She was smart and cunning, and Hughe had to be smarter and more cunning when dealing with her.

    Muriele was not his mother, she was his mother's midwife. His father was hardly known by his mother, and died weeks after impregnating her. His mother died in childbirth. He found this out many years after leaving the farm he grew up on. Muriele took him as her child and met Birane, whom she married. Muriele was a worshiper of Vaermina, whom she had made a terrible deal with. She would raise the child until he was ten, then offer the child to her as a sacrifice, in return for a lesser daedra to be bound to her and her will. Instead she loved the child, and tried to offer Vaermina the others in his place. Muriele was found to be weak, and it pleased Vaermina more to watch Hughe grow up after everything that happened to him, to see if his soul was as diseased at it seemed.
    Or so Kmyzene, the lesser daedra Hughe now had bound to him, told him.

    It mattered little. Hughe knew enough to not trust daedra, but that they did not always lie. He sensed some truth in this story, but that Kmyzene was holding something else back.

    "Born to a dead woman, son of a dead father," Hughe said to himself, then shrugged. The past was the past, so he simply moved on. Hughe turned away from the empty land that was once his home, many years ago, and vanished as if he was never there.
    "Krist the Lionheart? No. Lionheart was my dog" -Krist
    "Darling, if looks were everything, I would be king of the world" -Luke
    "That place, between day and night, that purple color just before dark, that is where you will find me"- Hughe
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