In the early 1900s, the nation of Aetheri came out of its long interdimensional isolation and revealed to the humans of the Symphony Archipelago that they were not alone in the multiverse. Things swiftly got ugly after that.
In the early 1990s, Aetheri's leadership changed, and in the Archipelago, a tiny broken family of half-siblings banded together in the face of the bile and hate that was boiling up between the humans and the non-humans.
In the early 2000s, that family was split apart. Hawk Press and his sister Liya Kiski both begin a long and exhaustive journey towards understanding the difference between friend and enemy--and between the family you're given, and the family you make.
< Yes, > the Cynn answered, still coughing quietly as he stepped into the office.
< Review of tactical placement in the Archipelago? > Sraddi inquired.
< Finished. >
< Scheduled a hearing with the Assembly on Incident 10107? >
< Yes, Sraddi. > Cynn Numair rasped. < I have finished all my errands in Enodia. >
No colored lights or sparks snapped around Sraddi's head, at least. She asked helpfully, < Shall I list your tasks for this evening? >
Cynn Numair bent slightly over his desk, bracing himself with one hand. The coughing was softer now, but still rattled his insides. Sraddi hopped onto the desk from her perch and traipsed across to him.
< I have sixteen voice messages, > she continued. < You have prioritized responding to the king Ulrich first. He seeks an audience this week in Barland. > And then she bumped her head gently into his arm, adding, < And you are several hours overdue for your medication. >
"Brawling like common beasts, how disgusting," the blonde spirit in the servant's purple uniform sneered. To one side of him stood Helly, nir hands twisting together anxiously; to the other loomed a large boar wearing a unform, his small black eyes unreadable. "You two had best explain yourselves."
Evening was falling over the grounds, casting the landscape in a patchwork of purple shadows and deep orange light. Liya and Yoshi leaned against the pasture fence, half-penned in by the three standing in front of them. Liya lifted her chin, which was scraped.
"Self-defense," she said, glaring, though her speaking was marred a tad by the fact that her cheek had swollen and gone red, and her nose was bruised and bloodied. Her unruly curls had also been half-yanked out of their ponytail. Yoshi didn't look any better--he sported a cut lip, and deeper, nastier cuts on his shoulders and down one of his arms. Bruises ringed one wrist, and his uniform had been torn.