Ten Thousand Years in Fragments, 1/10
April 2022 Lizali’s pale eyes were strikingly large and round, much like the silvery lotuses in the mosaic courtyard pool that she and Serafier leisurely strolled around, though their proud postures and expensive gowns made it appear like some important mission. “The High Councilor’s merits aside - did you hear about the Queen’s new accomplishment yet?” Lizali interrogated, carrying on their conversation about who was most competent in the arcane arts. “That would be...” While recalling the most recent hearsay coursing through her social circles, Serafier toyed with the vibrant shawl that had caught her eye in the capital’s market earlier that night. In contrast to her monotonous complexion, the garment was flooded by the hypnotizing shapes of exotic plumes. Just like fashion, rumor-mongering was a prominent sport among the aristocracy, and as such, it was a struggle to stay at the top of the game at all times. Not wanting to appear in the dark, Serafier inquired pointedly, “Which one?” “The miracle at the Seat of the Sky, of course!” Lizali proclaimed and gloated in the same breath. Narrowing her eyes at her smug friend, Serafier said nothing. Lizali paused on her steps and twirled toward the pool. Performing dainty gestures with her pink arms left exposed by the young woman’s daring red outfit and black updo, she knit air above the water. “It’s said that with a mere flick of her wrist, Azshara commanded the seas, rivers, and mountain streams to give of themselves, and created splendid lakes around the gem-encrusted bridges leading to the new temple. Sera, you didn't know about this yet?” Serafier seized her breath for the span of the godlike imagery, then dashed to hide her ignorance on the matter. “Ah! Don’t be ridiculous, of course I’ve heard.” Attending feats of magic was her privilege as a Highborne, but Xavius and the Queen would always skip above everyone’s expectations. Be that by becoming visibly younger and more glowing with each passing year, or by expanding the empire into ever greater prosperity. Ignoring Serafier’s reply, Lizali went on with dreamy enthusiasm, “And that’s not even all there’s to it, no, no. With the water came many curious creatures performing all sorts of wonderful tricks for our entertainment. Have you ever seen a sea giant? We should travel to the west soon — it’s quite the distance on a carriage, but it’d only be proper to behold her Highness's creation with our own eyes, isn't that right? And I dread to think of everyone else getting to marvel at it before we do.” “Certainly, I’d love to,” Serafier agreed with a polite smile, veiling a pang of frustration that she hadn’t caught this exciting news before Lizali. Though neither of them were Azshara’s handmaiden nor ever spoke with the monarch face to face, it was still part of their duties to be well-informed of anything and everything to do with the Queen in order to please the will of the palace and to appear as their ruler's favored servitors. Personal alliances in the upper class were frequently formed, tested and also broken by that vehement endeavor. As they resumed their walk, despite her annoyance Serafier couldn't deny the urge to attest to the grandeur of the Seat of the Sky. If Lizali’s report was true, then the temple’s construction was another outstanding demonstration of her people’s supremacy over the other races. Who else than the Highborne could be counted on with the power to shepherd the world toward beauty and perfection?