Bright as a Sword

* New Atlanta, Georgia. So named thanks to the building boom over the past three-quarters of a century, transforming a moderately large southern city into an -extremely- large one, with skyscrapers and sprawl. One might think such a place would have choked out all good things in the names of mercanileisim and money and commerce, but New Atlanta still clings to its roots. There are still large grassy areas inside the heart of the city. And Southern Pride is still strong, in its civic centers and colleges. Especially Georgia Tech, still holding Naval and Marine ROTC training even after classes have let out for the summer...

* Lt.Satterwaite barks "Dis-*missed*!" to the latest of one of those classes, ending it. Not a drop of sweat seems to be smirching his impeccable blue uniform, though there seems to be a bit of dampness to the temples of his fine ivory hair, pulled back in a tight ponytail. He waits, rigidly correct, for the cadets to leave.

* The cadets finally, slowly, break ranks. Good, good, they've gotten beter at that standing-in-ranks bit, and aren't immediately breaking up into rabble. And very very few have complained about the summer heat, even with the sunny weather outside.

* Lt.Satterwaite nods slightly, grey eyes watching the lot like a hawk, juuuust a little bit approving. And privately welcoming the prospect of a bit of AC himself, but is *he* going to mention it? Nooooo....

* There's a bit of a smile from one cadet or another, though mostly hiding it under the eyes of the CO of the class, waiting to fully relax until they get out of sight and technically "Off duty". This takes a little while, but soon, the cadets have all dispersed and the good Lieut can take care of the rest of his business for the day.

* Lt.Satterwaite relaxes, slightly, and turns on his heel, heading back toward his office, to take care of a last few things for the day before heading out. AC, blessed AC...

* Mmmmm. AC. Lovely, lovely AC. The shared-office for the instructors is like a breath of fresh air for the good Lieutenant, and mostly empty too, a plus. (After all, it's summer, and while classes continue there's not as -many- of them, or the instructors are on duty elsewhere.).

* Lt.Satterwaite looks around for anybody there, pausing to swipe quickly at his temples to blot sweat a bit. He isn't *that* impervious to the lovely climate of a Georgian summer, despite what the midshipmen might think...

* Nobody spots the Lt's attempt to desweatafy. His reputation is secure. Guess one of his associated had ducked out to relieve himself. The Lt's desk is unnocupied, just as he left it... mostly.

* Lt.Satterwaite arches an elegant ivory eyebrow at the mostly, waiting to see the situation.

* Well, looks like mail call occured when he was out. He's got a few missives in his inbox.

* Lt.Satterwaite puffs out a breath, and grabs those missives, before sitting in a chair and opening quickly.

* Even with the proliferation of electronic mail and communication, more 'importaint' things still come on the paper train. A few notifications of commencements or other ceremonies that the Lt. might be recommended to attend, Information for later processing, and.... a card-envelope from a cemetary?

* Lt.Satterwaite looks at the last, his other eyebrow crawling up to say hi to the first.

* It's from Historic Oakland Cemetary, addressed to Lt. Gary Satterwaite... well known through the city as a place to honor and cherish those who have died, a park, a swath of green and trees in the middle of the city... and known to Gary as also being a Tether to the Sword.

* Lt.Satterwaite darn well knew that fact, yes, and opens it rather quickly

* It's a single correspondance card, with the "Historic Oakland" crest printed on it, but inside is written in flowing script: "Lt. Gary Satterwaite. Your presence is required at the Obelisk by 3:30 pm, EST. You will be given further orders then. Sincerely, George Horel."

{Lt.Satterwaite} {m} Interesting. Very interesting.

* The card does not reply back.

* Lt.Satterwaite was quite doing it absently, flicking wrist to check time.

## INServ rolled 3d6 = 13 (6 3 4).

* He's got a good 45 minutes or so to make it there before the mentioned time. Hopefully. If downtown traffic is with him.

* Lt.Satterwaite shakes his head, takes the rest of the mail, and notes his checkout, before heading out, moving rather briskly.

* Lt.Satterwaite heads for the parking pool, unlocking his car en route and opening the door and sliding in in one fluid motion. The next motion starts the car, and the next has him pulling out, in considerable efficiency of motion.

* The parking lot is moderately sized, but fortunately his car is an economy model. Traffic does its thing of trafficing.

* Lt.Satterwaite does his thing of driving, relaxing in private, a bit.

## INServ rolled 3d6 = 6 (3 2 1).

* Traffic is not snarled! Another reason to relax. And the AC works in the car. Always a good thing.

* Gary is *damn* grateful for both, metaphorically speaking, naturally, getting into the flow of driving, and is hoping he makes good time. Explaining delays is always...embarassing.

## INServ rolled 3d6 = 7 (3 3 1).

* Gary gets the signal his way just as he reaches one of the intersections, and his intended destination gets closer, ever closer...

* Gary takes the intersection, and checks to see how much time he has to spare.

## INServ rolled 3d6 = 5 (1 3 1).

* He's still good! About a half-hour.

* Gary relaxes a bit, still wending through traffic and grateful it isn't rush hour. He switches the radio to some classical music, listening to some Brahms for a bit.

* Mmmmm. Brahms.

* It shifts to Handel after a bit, for which he's not minding, either.

* Closer, ever closer... towards the center of New Atlanta. And even as the buildings soar for the sky, there can be seen spots of green. Including one coming up...

* Gary aims for dat one green spot, weaving with a fencerlike grace around a truck.

* The truck doesn't even realize it's been passed until the little econopod is in front of it! Such is the grace of Gary that he even makes an efficency-car look cool.

* Gary isn't vain about it. That'd defeat the entire purpose.

* And then, finally, Gary reaches the entrance of Historic Oakland Cemetary. Even this close to the intersection of Interstates 75 and 20, it serves as a place of refuge and respite and rememberance for the city, filled with statuary and grave markers and the occasional building defining the shape of the 88 acres in the heart of Downtown New Atlanta.

* Gary cocks his head, listening a bit, maybe not entirely to the Handel, as he finds a place to park.

## INServ rolled 3d6 = 10 (3 5 2).

* There's a space that can be taken... not ideal, in the sun, but better than nothing....

* Gary doesn't much mind, and takes it. Fortunately, he's the type of person that keeps his car ridiculously clean and doesn't have any such fun meltable or warpable things such as chocolate, flopticals, wax, or worse in the car to be hit by the sun. He slides out as soon as the engine's off, locking.

* The car is locked. The Cemetary spreads out before him. There's a few caretakers, a couple informative signs, lots of grave markers, many dating back to the victorian era, or the Civil War. There's a building that doubles as visitor's center, reception area and gift store. No tours during the week usually, but there's a self-tour one can take...

* Gary takes it, and knows where to, wending his way promptly toward the Obelisk.

* Near the center of Oakland Cemetary, there is a section of uniform markers, ranked in rows, like soldiers standing forever at attention, instead of the wide and varied statuary marking other burial plots. At the center of this section stands a 65 foot tall Obelisk, straight and tall and proud, making where nearly 3000 Confederate soldiers and 16 Union soldiers have been buried. Nearby, there stands a large stone carving, the Lion of Atlanta, with the legend "UNKNOWN CONFEDERATE DEAD" beneath it. There's the occasional copse of trees. One or two Confederate History buffs walking among the markers. And a white-haired man with a permanent stoop, picking up trash with a stick.

* Gary continues to walking toward the Obelisk, not paying too obvious attention to that man, just yet, waiting to get close enough before doing so.

* The two history-buffs are taking a rubbing of one of the grave markers. The Old man, one of the caretakers, doesn't -appear- to have noticed Gary, instead poking more trash with nigh-military precision. The Obelisk stands straight and tall, casting a sharp shadow across the Confederate Section, almost like a sword-blade cutting across the sun.

* Gary noted the similarity once or twice, and keeps heading in.

* And now, he reaches the Obelisk itself. Well, almost. There's a nice little chain-fence around it... and there's the clearing of a throat behind him.

* Gary turns around, arching eyebrow again, though he has a feeling he knows whose throat it is.

* It's the old caretaker guy! His nametag reads "G. Horel", and he looks up at Gary through his glasses, his moustache jumping as he speaks. "Paying respects to the war-dead, young man?"

* Gary nods, a very little bit, a slight inclination of head. "Yes, you could say so..." His own badge is probably on prominent display as well, as he hadn't thought to remove.

* The caretaker nods, and peers at the badge, clucking in approval. "Oh good. All right and proper and on time. You're a tribute to the service, young man."

* Gary smiles, a bit wryly. "The traffic was with me as well. I had a session or I would have had the notice earlier."

* The caretaker chuckles slightly. "'s to be expected. Got to make sure the raw recruts are tempered and forged correctly. That's more importaint. Though getting your next orders are nearly as so." He spears another piece of litter, taking care of it.

* Gary nods, smiling a bit. "True, indeed. What would they be, sir?"

* The caretaker clears his throat, and pitches his voice so only Gary can hear it. *q* "Giri, Bright of the Sword, you are to report to Kafziel, Most Holy of Saturn, Major of the Sword in his offices within the Cathedral of our Lord Commander for further breifing. You are also to attend Kafziel's breifing in the company of Ripley, a Wheel of ours, who should be on the way."

* Gary listens carefully, and then nods. {q, similarly pitched} "Understood, Hayyoth of the Obelisk. Should I ascend, therefore?"

* The caretaker... the seneschal of the Oakland Cemetary Confederate Obelisk ... nods, and glances towards the nearest copse of trees. *q* "You can drop your vessel there..." He looks around, to see if there's folks nearby...

## INServ rolled 3d6 = 7 (1 5 1).

{Gary} {q} Thank you, sir.

* The two history buffs appear to have left! For the moment, the two are alone.

* The caretaker nods. *q* "Go with Honor."

{Gary} {q} And to you as well, Hayyoth. {slight smile} * The caretaker nods again, and goes back to picking up trash.

* Gary nods one last time, and strides for the copse, quickly, before any other mortals come along.

* The copse is various trees that, even if one got -close- to the outside, you couldn't see in.

* Gary is quite grateful for this, and takes one last breath into corporeal lungs.

* Gary then spends the essence...and drops his flesh.

* Nobody notices. Nobody sees. Save for perhaps the old caretaker, still maintaining his circuit around the obelisk.

* The Symphonic hum rings out from the copse, overridden by the Tethernoise, the figure within unchanged, except for the steely bright mirage shimmer of aura over beatified form and changed grey uniform, two uncertain flickering wings of chrome mirage flashing out once...

* And Giri, Bright Lilim of the Sword, Ascends...

*** Gary is now known as Giri.

* The seneschal tips his cap to the unseen figure as he ascends, and resumes his duties. And for Giri, the World Changes....

* Giri folds his wings as reality reasserts itself, taking his bearings automatically, with the practice of a centuries old fighter.

* Giri finds himself in a small chapel, a few candles lit and a stained-glass window letting in heavenly light, the panes that of a confederate soldier at prayer. Giri himself has appeared in front of an oval of steel, emblazoned with a sword, point-down. A Mercurian, in formal garb of the Sword, salutes Giri. "Giri, Bright of our Lord Laurence?"

* Giri salutes back. "Indeed, Intercessionist."

* The Mercurian assumes parade-rest stance. "I was informed by the Seneschal that you were arriving shortly. The Most Holy of Saturn is awaiting you, and Ripley, Wheel of our Lord Commander, in his offices adjacent to the east transcept."

* Giri inclines his head, also shifting to parade-rest. "So I'm given to understand, Intercessionist. Shall I therefore go?" * The Mercurian smiles, slightly. "Unless you wish to wait here for Ripley, sir."

{Giri} It would probably be a bit more expeditious for me to wait, I think.

* The Mercurian nods. "Very good, sir." He resumes his guard position.

* Giri moves away from the locus himself, folding his wings into a close mantle and also waiting.

* And so, in the peace and quiet in a chapel in the Cathedral of the Sword... we Fork.

In Nomine 2070