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Love Drives Us All Into Madness

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Long ago, when the world was still space dust gathering around a stone, Rowan’s great-grandsire was born. Tru’Nembra was an old thing, and lived in the court of Azathoth, along with many others. And with those others. Tru’Nembra watched the rising and falling of humans with disinterest, save for those whose music resembled their own.

 

Like Helena, Rowan’s now long-dead great-grandmother.

 

Helena was once a fair woman, with long flame-colored hair and a voice that made sailors cry. And as such, she became Tru’Nembra’s chosen for a child. Although her husband Owain had laid a baby in her belly, Tru’Nembra became their true father, adding his maddening song to the rhythm of their hearts. But, when Helena died giving birth to the children (for the seed of an Old One is plentiful and begets many), Owain was left with the children of another, though he did not know it.

 

Saddened by his beloved wife's loss, Owain took his five children and boarded a boat to the new world.

 

America was a hard place for a cobbler with children with a Gift like theirs. Each child's voice was different, although when they grew, they never cracked or changed. Lachlan, the first boy, had the deepest bass that Owain had ever heard, in comparison to Simon’s tenor and Finn’s delicate falsetto. Agatha, the prettier sister as all the boys said, had a gorgeous alto that seemed to darken her eyes and put a curl in her smile.

 

But the one that Rowan loved most of all was Maeve.

 

Maeve, the littlest of the lot, was the spitting image of her mother. She was kind, though not pretty, and sweet, but not coy. The boys loved her sister more, for Agatha was dark haired and fair skinned like her father. But her brothers always knew if Agatha had caught a boy, Maeve had loved him first.

 

Until Anthony.

 

Anthony was a local boy and had lived in New York with his family since they had arrived on a boat from Italy, much like Owain had her. Anthony had chosen to apprentice at a flower shop on the corner and Maeve, dressed in her prettiest blue dress had asked him to help her find the perfect flower for her mothers birthday.

 

The match for her Words was perfect down to the cadence.

 

As the siblings grew, they found the world changing around them, with Maeve and her family forming a band and traveling like bards from old. They never stayed for long in any town, and they never signed, even though people begged and pleaded. Eventually, after Owain’s death, the siblings settled in a little town on the Western Coast.

 

From their family, a great many children were born, Tru’Nembra’s music running through their veins like oil. While her siblings had two’s and three’s, Maeve only had one: a little girl named Moira, with eyes like broken stars.

 

The Conrad Farm was home to many children with strange gifts, and soon became a haven for the abandoned children of the Old Ones and mortals with broken bodies and shattered minds.

 

This was to be Moira met Alan, and where Rowan, child of Tru’Nembra and Yidhra, the Dream Witch was born.

 

But it is not her heritage that her story begins with, instead, it is her Soulmarks.

 

As a child of Conrad Farm, she had seen many a Mark on the bodies of her siblings, knowing that some would wed each other, and others would live in the solitude caused by the “gifts” that their lineage gave them. It became so cruel to leave the marks on some, that they asked Lachlan, for he was still strong and powerful, to burn their marks off.

 

Some went insane from the loss and left to be with the stars and sea. Others stayed, to become the minders of the children and loved one another without Words to guide them.

 

Rowan loved her Soulmarks, for they did not symbolize unreachable goals, but instead, a boundless love that she hoped would last beyond her life. Even after her leg was taken, Rowan lived on, caring for the other children as they grew.

 

But humanity is a fickle thing, and sanity slips away easily when Outer Gods bless a valley with their bountiful young, not all of which were as good at hiding as Maeve and her siblings.

 

And so, one night while all slept, the Farm was burned to ash, with both children and keepers locked inside.

 

It is a wonder why no bodies were ever found.