Monday, July 21, 2008

Hela (Olivea Eales) - Royal Harem Mistress of the Baths

Name: Olivea Eales
KOS Name: Hela
Title: Royal Harem Mistress of the Baths

I am Ireem, I have always been. Some may say I have less claim to it, that because I was born to nomadics, out in the desert, roaming. I do not know if my parents were Ireem, or their parents before them, or theirs before them. I do not think there is any blood in my veins that is not purely that of the nomads. But I am Ireem. I know it in my soul, and I love the city as much as any whose blood is pure.

Amongst my people I have been heralded as a great beauty, a bloom in the desert. My name was given to me by my parents, but the tribe has always known me as 'Hela'. This means life, and I was told that this name was given to me because I was the nomads' beauty in a hard and dry life. My presence and my name, they told me, reminded them that there was good in life.

Because of my beauty, I was spared of great trials and tribulations as I grew. While my brothers and sisters were forced to heard the animals, to carry great loads, to build and rebuild the carts, I instead was set to carry water and dance in the firelight after the day's work was done. I served them their meals, but I did not cook them, nor did I clean them up. I played music and sang, but I did not hear the songs of the sheapards or the hymns of the goats.

There was no malice in my position in life. The nomads worshipped me in some strange way, and by having me with them, it was as though they shared in some great luxary. My life was always easy, even in the harshness of the desert. The first taste of sweet fruit was always mine, the finest cloth was always fashioned for me.

But I was also a world apart from them, even my family. Because I was so revired, I was also not considered part of the clan. Where others had friendships and family bonds, I had awe. Because of this, I became a quiet girl, quite reclusive. It was my way of life, and as I aged, a problem arose: who ever could be worthy to marry me? None of the nomads would dare, but I had never met anyone beyond them. What life was I ever meant to have?

I had grown up in the shadows of Ireem and it's walls. I had never looked inside of it, always my family had moved around the desert, with no real home to speak up. But any encampment where I might have seen the gleaming stone was home to me. When I decided to leave my tribe, there was no doubt as to where I would go.

There are not words to describe my escay when I came to the large city gates, towering over me. It was the first time in my life I have ever felt small and insignifigant. In my life I was always hailed as something bigger than the desert or the people: I was the Beauty in Life. But standing before the porticalus, I knew better for the first time.

I was able to spend a few days of bliss within the Inn, dancing with strangers, drinking in fine wine. I was a person, here, I was no longer worshipped like some strange child of the Gods. But it was not to be.

At the mouth of the gates, within days, a man drew a sword on me, and commanded me to follow. I struggled, but he overpowered me and managed to link a collar and chain around my neck. He led me from the gates while two Knights stood guard, two Knights watched while I was completely helpless. Since then, I have never trusted a Knight.

The man who took me was a slaver, and he led me to the harbor where his boat was docked. I will not retell the unspeakable acts that were performed there. Where the city had made me feel human in spite of my face, this once again made me inhuman. But I was not a child of the Gods I was nothing but a flower that had been crushed.

It would not always be so. As I lived in the cage, watching as women were taken to the horrible ship, raped, cut, beaten, and killed, something in my master changed towards me. At first I was once again worshipped by a clan - but this one did not fear and respect my beauty. Instead they exploited it, and I was manhandled by the entire camp at their will. But as time went on, my master became more tender to me, until finally he decreed that no one should dare touch me. I was once more given a position of respect and in this case, some strange authority. I could walk free among the camp, and new girls that were brought in were often brought to me, to be taught the serving and submission and grace needed to be sold fo a profit. My master decided that I was too valuable to be sold. Together, he and I had many adventures, visiting lost ruins and even the Underworld for a time. We saw many great battles and visited many astonishing places. Instead, after a servitude of several months, I was released to my own liberty. I had worked hard, he said, to make my own choice and my own path. Now I would make it.

I was accepted into the Royal Harem quite graciously the following day. My beauty, the knowledge I had learned in the slaver camps and my ability to train younger, inexperienced girls herladed for me another great position. I was to be the Mistress of the Oda of the Baths. In this position I am able to help teach the new girls of the Harem to make sure that every guest and Lord is properly attended to.

I spend my days now in a tower, high above the city, looking out over the desert from whence I came. It is a dream I often had as a girl, to be inside the city of Ireem, the gleaming stone of hope on the horizon of the desert, and to see all the nomads and people around me. Never have my dreams dared to turn to real hope, and yet here I sit now, among artwork and silks and the finest of wine, looking over my past and what is behind me. I do not know what lies ahead for me, or what shall change for me now. There is only one thing I can say.

Aasha hela jamella - Live a beautiful life.

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