Mist Harbor Library Lectures - 2021-01-17 - Katillios on Choice (log)

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The following was the fourth lecture in the Mist Harbor Library Lecture series, where Katillios was the guest speaker, which was given on 1/17/5121. The topics must be lore based but otherwise are at the discretion of the invited speaker. This lecture is on the nature of Choice. This log is for the purpose of posterity and is presented without bias. It has also been edited to be easier to read while attempting to retain an informative flow.

[Library, Meeting Hall]
A trio of wide stairs lead down from a wide archway into this brightly lit room.  A small podium stands atop a small dais opposite the archway, and several cushioned benches have been arranged throughout the space, each offering an excellent line of sight.  A number of elliptical windows line the walls of the hall, and a rich crimson-patterned carpet covers the entirety of the floor underfoot.  You also see a small table with some stuff on it.
Also here: Lord Kothos, Yardie, Dalinsia, Lady Landrai who is sitting, Teaberry who is sitting, Holly, Loremaster Rohese, Magister Raelee who is sitting, Master Porfidat, Avaia, Katillios, Chatelaine Traiva who is sitting, Meril, Xorus, Akenna who is sitting, Barrister Faerinn, Tabubu who is kneeling, Mister Kibosen, Alisaire, Grelana who is sitting
Obvious exits: none

Speaking softly to you, Rohese says, "Welcome to the Mist Harbor Library."

Rohese glances around the room.

Rohese walks to stand behind a small podium.

Rohese sharply claps her hands together twice, calling for attention.

Rohese smiles.

Katillios turns to face Rohese.

Rohese graciously greets, "Good afternoon and welcome to the fourth in our lecture series."

Rohese lightly explains, "As I'm sure you are all aware by now, the aim of this series is to provide a platform for imparting knowledge and encouraging discussion."

Rohese gently reminds, "I ask that everyone be considerate to our speaker as well as those who comment or ask questions."

Rohese softly continues, "All opinions are welcome and encouraged, as long as they are courteously expressed."

Rohese glances around the room.

Rohese smiles.

Rohese warmly says, "I was delighted to receive a proposal from today's speaker and even more delighted to invite her to join us this afternoon."

Rohese glances appreciatively at Katillios.

Katillios makes her way to the front of the Hall, her footsteps silent and her gaze firmly on the floor.

You see Katillios Esh'Na'Vellus.
She appears to be a Half-Elf from Ta'Nalfein.
She is small of stature and has a petite frame.  She appears to be mature.  She has wide cerulean eyes and ruddy skin.  She has flowing, glossy jet black hair pinned close to the top of her head with an intricate series of polished ivory clamps.  She has a gentle face, a delicate nose and a small scar at the corner of her full lips.  She has golden wire threaded back and forth all through the outside of both ears, forming a series of sequentially smaller gleaming hoops.
She is in good shape.
She is wearing a brilliant white tunic with alternating aquamarine and onyx buttons, a black velvet pouch with aquamarine beads at its seams, some elegant black breeches tailored to lie close to the skin, and some knee-high sleek leather boots.

Rohese delightedly introduces, "Please give Katillios Esh'Na'Vellus a warm Library welcome."

Rohese beams at Katillios and claps her hands together in delight!

Rohese strides a few steps backward.

Rohese selects a spot on one of the cushioned benches and settles into its soft cushions.

Rohese folds her hands in her lap.

Katillios kneels in a fluid motion, then crosses her hands and uses the back of them to shield her eyes in a ritualistic fashion before rising to her feet once more.

Katillios simply begins, "This one thanks you most humbly for the opportunity to speak to such an august gathering."

Katillios peers around the room, her eyes gleaming with barely-contained fervor.

Katillios melodically says, "This one has asked to speak today on the most important topic in existence.  It is an unassailable notion that the topic of choice is paramount above all others.  To Choose.  The act of making a Choice."

Katillios melodically continues, "Each of you makes choices every minute of your lives, but you do so without care or analysis.  You do so without awareness or education.  You live your lives charging recklessly from one choice to the next without any care for the repercussions that your choices will have on yourself, or those around you."

Katillios lowers her voice somewhat and glances down at her hands.

Katillios quietly says, "This one is all too familiar with the consequences of unconsidered choices."

Katillios closes her eyes and shakes her head slightly, her voice returning to its melodic timbre.

Katillios melodically says, "With your indulgence, this one shall tell a small portion of her story, to illustrate her own missteps, and the consequences thereof."

Katillios kneels, drawing her skirts close around her knees, clearly comfortable in the pose, and gently clasps her hands.

Katillios moves to a kneeling position.

Katillios melodically says, "This one was born to wealth and privelege on a private estate.  This one never wanted for anything, and was doted on by everyone she came into contact with."

Katillios melodically says, "Whenever this one would cry out, any within earshot would rush to provide any manner of diversions or comforts."

Katillios smiles softly, her eyes distant.

Katillios melodically says, "This one had no concept of choice.  She lived on instinct, seeking instant gratification whenever the childish urges struck her."

Katillios softly says, "Until the raiders came."

Katillios takes a steadying breath, squaring her shoulders.

Katillios melodically intones, "The raiders came with thirsty blades in the dead of night, and those blades drank their fill in the bellies of her family.  This one was a mere girl at the time, but she watched as entrails were spilled in each direction by wild beasts posing as intelligent creatures."

Katillios pauses for a long moment, completely still, her face an expressionless mask, then slowly closes her eyes and takes a slow breath before continuing.

Katillios melodically admits, "This one was old enough that the memories are still fresh, and she is quite sure they shall never fade."

Katillios smiles suddenly, her eyes coming alight with emotion.

Katillios melodically exclaims, "And this one is so grateful for that fact.  That pain... that fear... were but the first lesson in a lifetime filled with them.  In that moment, this one made a Choice!"

Katillios simply says, "This one chose to fight."

Katillios smirks slightly, and shakes her head in wonder.

Katillios melodically continues, "This one picked up a sword from a fallen family member and, with clumsy hands, attempted to rush one of the raiders.  The raider, naturally, laughed uproariously, batted aside her sword, and turned his full attentions on her."

Katillios neutrally continues, "The sordid recounting of the consequences of that Choice are not appropriate to a place such as this."

Katillios grins widely around at the gathered listeners.

Katillios melodically proclaims, "Doubtless those as wise as yourselves have already gleaned the lesson in this portion of the tale.  It was this one's Choice to take up that sword!  For that reason, the consequences belong solely to her!"

Katillios smooths out a fold in her skirt, marshaling her thoughts.

Katillios softly says, "Allow this one to pause the narrative for a moment."

Katillios softly asks, "What use is it to blame a thing for following its nature?"

Katillios softly asks, "What use to curse the rain for falling?"

Katillios softly asks, "If one gets soaked from the rain, is it not that one's blame to bear for not making other arrangements?  Perhaps they could have chosen a hooded cloak, or delayed their errand?"

Katillios melodically proclaims, "Their Choice is what led to their soaking, and all expect them to bear that burden.  All of life is the same as this."

Katillios melodically continues, "This one made a terrible choice.  It could be argued that she was unaware that she even had a choice, or perhaps even that all her choices were terrible."

Katillios simply says, "It matters not.  The Choice was made, and she bears the responsibility for the consequences of her actions."

Katillios glances at a few skeptical faces and smiles all the wider.

Katillios melodically says, "Allow this one to continue their story, and we shall perhaps learn a different sort of lesson."

Katillios melodically says, "After a time, a new form entered the estate, and the raiders prostrated themselves before him.  More mighty of a being this one had never seen nor heard tell of, and she quailed at the thought of what fresh horrors might be forthcoming."

Katillios melodically says, "In the time of her troubles, however, this one had grown precipitously in wisdom, and thus was able to make another Choice, but this time her Choice was carefully measured and considered."

Katillios simply says, "This one threw themselves at the foot of the mighty being and begged for mercy, swearing herself to a lifetime of servitude if only she would be spared."

Katillios blinks back tears, her eyes shining.

Katillios quietly says, "The Warlord, for such he was and is, laughed.  He laughed long and hard, and made comments to the raiders in a tongue this one did not understand, and the laughter abounded from every corner.  But when the laughter subsided, the Warlord threw this one over one shoulder with ease and carried her away, unharmed."

Katillios melodically says, "Once more, allow this one to pause the narrative and point out the gravity of these actions.  This one, though still at a tender, spoiled age, had the wherewithal and mental faculties to consider her possible courses of action, and to make a considered Choice.  And this time... this one chose correctly."

Katillios crosses her hands and uses the back of them to shield her eyes in a ritualistic fashion before rising to her feet once more.

Katillios stands up.

Katillios melodically announces, "It is incumbent upon all beings who would claim to be possessing of both intelligence and free will to take responsibility for both their Choices and the repercussions of the same."

Katillios melodically continues, "Allow this one to present a hypothetical example:  Imagine a young man sent on a mission against their will, leveraged into the situation by extreme coersion.  They are told in no uncertain terms that horrible things will happen should they fail in their mission.  All can imagine this scenario, yes?"

Katillios melodically says, "In this moment, the Choice lies solely with the young man.  It is his duty, and his privelege, to consider his choices clearly, and then make a Choice with his eyes wide open, and accept what consequences may arise from said Choice."

Katillios melodically continues, "Perhaps this young man will Choose to betray his masters, and reveal his mission.  That is entirely up to him, but it is critical that he first consider the repercussions of that Choice.  He has already been clearly told what might happen, after all.  Should he doubt that those giving the orders would live up to their end of the bargain?"

Katillios melodically continues, "In order to make that Choice, he must consider what he knows of those giving the orders and attempt to balance the scales.  What is more likely?  Will the consequences be as initially stated?  Could they perhaps even be worse?"

Katillios softly says, "For our purposes here today... it matters not."

Katillios melodically says, "What is important is the concept of Choice.  Regardless of your personal situation, you have Choice, at all times.  And it is your solemn duty to remain cognizant of that fact, and take measured steps with the full knowledge that the results of those Choices lie solely upon your heads."

Katillios melodically says, "Allow this one to humbly restate this important facet: The universe gives us no assurances that there is always a 'right' Choice.  Or even a 'good' Choice.  But there is always Choice."

Katillios melodically says, "Another angle to consider: Refusing to make a Choice does not allow one to abrogate their culpability for the results of their refusal."

Katillios melodically says, "One final method of looking at this most critical of subjects: One must take care to resist the urge to look back at their history and wish longingly that things had turned out differently.  Each of you is required to take ownership of your lives in this way.  Where you are today is solely the result of your Choices. Own those Choices, and the repercussions of them!  The young man from the example... his Choices led him to this moment!  Weep not for him."

Katillios softly says, "Or for this one.  This one made her Choices, and those Choices have led her to a life of joyful service in the sacred embrace of that same Warlord.  This one made the wisest Choice of her life, and lives with the wonderful reality of it with every heartbeat."

Katillios melodically says, "This one thanks you for your attention, and humbly asks that you overlook the poor oration and presentation used to deliver this lecture.  This one would be most pleased to answer any questions, should there be any."

Katillios curtsies low, her eyes on the floor.

[heavily edited for brevity]

Dalinsia curiously asks, "Who is the Warlord?"

Akenna asks, "Who is this Warlord and where is he currently?"

Katillios softly says, "The Warlord's name is not to be spoken by this one's lips.  He is a mighty being, in possession of both skill and magic beyond this one's understanding."

Dalinsia says, "That seems vague an evasive."

Speaking carefully to Katillios, Akenna asks, "And where is he now?"

Speaking to Katillios, Teaberry asks, "Why didn't you just kill the Warlord while he was sleeping and then run away? A dagger, a spell, and then run for parts unknown?"

Katillios blinks at Teaberry.

Teaberry peers quizzically at Katillios.

Katillios hides a smirk behind a careful hand.

Teaberry says, "It's just sense."

Speaking softly to Teaberry, Katillios says, "Such a thing is quite impossible, this one can assure you."

Speaking to Katillios, Teaberry asks, "Why is it impossible?"

Faerinn asks, "Is this the part where we pledge allegiance and you spare us or...?"

Speaking softly to Teaberry, Katillios says, "Spells, poisons, and blades alike cannot reach him, regardless of his level of alertness."

Katillios shrugs at Teaberry.

Katillios blinks at Faerinn.

Speaking to Katillios, Teaberry asks, "Why can't they affect him?"

Speaking softly to Faerinn, Katillios says, "This one comes before you only to share her experiences.  Your choices are, and always remain, your own."

Speaking politely to Katillios, Akenna says, "I believe my question goes unanswered miss."

Akenna smiles at Katillios.

Speaking softly to Akenna, Katillios asks, "This one apologizes.  She is unused to speaking amongst so many.  What was your question?"

Speaking to Katillios, Akenna asks, "Where is your Warlord?"

Speaking softly to Akenna, Katillios says, "When last this one was in his sacred presence, he was on the open seas, considering his next destination.  This one is unaware if that choice has been made or not."

Akenna nods at Katillios.

Katillios turns to face Holly.

Akenna says, "Thank you for answering, miss.  I appreciate it."

Holly asks, "Is this warlord of Krolvin make and form?"

Katillios looks thoughtfully at Holly.

Speaking softly to Holly, Katillios says, "He may once have been, but he has risen far beyond any simple label of race."

Speaking to Katillios, Holly says, "You mentioned masquerading as beast versus intelligence."

Holly takes a moment to observe Katillios.

Holly says, "Very well then."

Katillios turns to face you.

You smile at Katillios.

You take a drink from your ice cold lemonade.

Speaking softly to you, Katillios says, "This one would be well pleased to address your question."

You ask, "First, I empathize with you over the loss of your family in such a way.  No, unfortunately, the pain will never fade completely, and yes, you are correct about the choices one makes in a moment like that having various consequences.  My question to you is, what do you do when you're paralyzed by Choice?"

Katillios smiles at you.

Speaking softly to you, Katillios says, "A wise question, indeed."

Speaking softly to you, Katillios says, "It is incumbent upon each to realize all aspects of the choices before them.  One of these is the notion of time.  To take too long to make a choice can mean that avenues are taken from their grasp."

Speaking softly to you, Katillios says, "It is often impossible to consider all aspects in the time given... however this in no way limits the responsibility for the consequences of those actions... or inactions."

Katillios turns to face Rohese.

You smile at Katillios.

Rohese smiles at Katillios.

Speaking politely to Katillios, Rohese inquires, "Speaking of consequences for actions regarding your first choice, were there subsequent repercussions for the raider that ... turned his attentions on you?"

Speaking softly to Katillios, Rohese adds, "If not, do you believe there should have been?"

Katillios ponders.

Rohese inclines her head.

Speaking softly to Rohese, Katillios says, "This one believes that the particular raider who was so ill-advisedly attacked was acting according to its nature, and therefore should bear no blame from her for her choice."

Rohese bites her lip.

Speaking softly to Rohese, Katillios says, "However, it made its own choices in reacting as it did, and there may be others who will provide repercussions for that."

Rohese nods slowly.

Rohese shakes her head, totally at a loss.

Rohese glances away.

Speaking softly to Rohese, Katillios says, "This one is unaware if such a thing occurred, but it is not for her to cast blame on a thing for acting as it must."

Katillios turns to face Meril.

Meril nods.

Speaking to Katillios, Meril says, "I wished to ask another question, of the choices made in the raid."

Speaking softly to Meril, Katillios says, "This one would be pleased to answer, if she may."

Meril asks, "In the end, you said that the woman had made the correct choice. How came it to be that she *knows* this?"

Speaking softly to Meril, Katillios says, "One cannot truly know, this one supposes.  However, the peace and joy filling her days are a mark that she chooses to interpret as a sign of her correct Choice."

Meril asks, "Is it happiness then that is the last judgement of right and wrong?"

Speaking simply to Meril, Katillios says, "For this one, yes.  For others, she cannot judge."

Meril nods.

Meril says, "Thank you for the answer."

Meril clasps her hands in a reverent gesture.

Katillios turns to face Traiva.

Speaking boredly to Katillios, Traiva says, "As lovely as your story about the raiders were, for illustration, I have a thought that is more general in nature.."

Speaking softly to Traiva, Katillios says, "This one would be pleased to answer if she may."

Speaking to Katillios, Traiva continues, "What of those who have choice taken from them? Such as when I use magic skill to direct, say, a puma to attack its mate?"

Traiva says, "Or a bandit, even, to bring the choice to something we recognize as having more complex decision making skill.."

Speaking in Aelotian, Traiva darkly murmurs something you don't understand.

Traiva folds her wings across her back.

Speaking softly to Traiva, Katillios says, "This one fears you are getting caught up in semantics to a degree.  The puma whose will has been subsumed must bear no blame for its actions, but blame is far from the only consequence of them.  In this instance, if the mate were stronger by far, and the controlled puma were to perish, that would be a consequence that they bore without blame.  The blame in that instance would fall upon you, this one feels."

Katillios softly says, "But the consequence would remain nonetheless, of course."

Speaking to Katillios, Traiva says, "My other example, then."

Speaking softly to Traiva, Katillios asks, "You speak of a bandit whose will has been subsumed?"

Traiva evenly says, "And my apologies, I reverted to my native tongue for a last..."

Speaking to Katillios, Traiva says, "Let me give you one better."

Katillios nods at Traiva.

Speaking evenly to Katillios, Traiva asks, "What of when an Overseer, those who enslaved the Aelotoi on Bre'naere, would intrude on our thoughts with scramble that we had no ability to think straight. What of our choices then, and does the Aelotoi deserve repercussions for that which she cannot control?"

Speaking softly to Traiva, Katillios says, "One whose will has been subsumed in this fashion must bear no guilt or blame for their actions while thusly subdued.  They are unable to Choose for themselves, and the consequences of those Choices, in a perfect universe, would fall upon those who took that Choice away."

Speaking to Katillios, Traiva argues, "But things are not perfect. Far from, in fact."

Speaking softly to Traiva, Katillios says, "We must consider what could be, then strive to apply it to what is."

Traiva asks, "Should not Rohese have right to take action against me if I, in such a state, were to attack her?"

Speaking quietly to Traiva, Tabubu asks, "Wouldn't that be her choice?"

Speaking to Tabubu, Traiva says, "Based on what I have heard, Rohese should turn against the Overseer that put me in such state, as my nature is to not attack my friends."

Traiva glowers.

Tabubu quietly asks, "Should ? Or has choosen to?"

Speaking to Tabubu, Traiva says, "In the example I present, choice has been taken away."

Speaking softly to Traiva, Katillios says, "We speak of blame, not actions.  Who is at fault for your actions in this supposition?  Extenuating circumstances shall of course arise in any situation, but speaking solely as to the issue of blame, if you were unable to Choose, then that Choice, and the blame rendered by it, should not be yours."

Speaking to Katillios, Traiva argues, "But choices have consequences. Who should then bear the brunt of the consequence?"

Speaking softly to Traiva, Katillios says, "As you say, this is an imperfect world.  Consequences do not fall where they ought, more often than not."

Traiva passionately says, "You cannot talk about choice without talking about consequence. To do so is to leave off the other side and give an incomplete presentation."

Speaking softly to Katillios, Rohese apologizes, "Allow me to press the point a little further, if you wouldn't mind.  Can you honestly say that you do not regret your original choice because of its consequences?"

Rohese agrees with Traiva.

Traiva takes a deep breath.

Traiva slowly empties her lungs.

Rohese softly says, "The two are interconnected, surely."

Traiva quietly states, "And I shall still my tongue now, to give others their fair chance."

Rohese stands up.

Speaking softly to Rohese, Katillios says, "This one chooses to reframe that instance, which could have remained as a fester on her soul to this day, as a moment of elightenment.  If this one had chosen differently, who knows where she would have ended up?  This one feels quite certain that she would not feel a fraction of the happiness that consumes her if that had come to pass."

Rohese glances at Katillios and babbles, apparently unable to form a coherent thought.

Speaking softly to Rohese, Katillios asks, "If you were forced to walk through a fire barefoot, but on the other side was more happiness than you thought possible, would you regret having done so?"

Speaking softly to Katillios, Rohese says, "I shall personally leave that question unanswered and allow others to ponder it."

Rohese smiles at Katillios.

Katillios nods understandingly at Rohese.

Rohese glances around the room.

Faerinn asks, "So by your use of the passive voice in your own history, my guess is you only consider yourself to have made two choices in life. Is this the pitch you bring us to lay down our own choices to the nature of your cult leader?"

Katillios softly says, "This one fears that her time draws short... perhaps one question, or possibly two, before she must depart."

Speaking softly to Faerinn, Katillios says, "He would likely slaughter you if you tried, this one fears.  He seeks not to draw others to him.  He is content to exist, and do as he wills."

Speaking to Katillios, Faerinn asks, "I see, then why send you as his herald to spread his philosophy?"

Rohese softly asks, "You had a final question for Katillios?"

Speaking softly to Faerinn, Katillios says, "This one made her own choice to come.  He has no knowledge of her presence here today."

Rohese smiles at Dalinsia.

Dalinsia smiles.

Dalinsia says, "Yes, thank you."

Katillios turns to face Dalinsia.

Speaking to Katillios, Dalinsia asks, "There was another person you talked about in your lecture, a man who had to choose to follow terrible directions or face terrible consequences if he returned without carrying them out.  Who is that man?"

Katillios smirks slightly, covering the movement with a polite cough.

Speaking softly to Dalinsia, Katillios says, "That was purely a hypothetical.  There is no such man."

Dalinsia asks, "Are you sure?"

Rohese smiles.

Rohese glances around the room.

Speaking softly to Dalinsia, Katillios says, "This one is unsure what you mean by that.  The example given was entirely a fabrication."

Speaking to Katillios, Dalinsia says, "Thank you."

Rohese softly says, "I am sure you will all join me in thanking our speaker for such a fascinating insight into the subject of choices."

Rohese smiles at Katillios.

Yardie smiles at Katillios.

Grelana smiles at Katillios.

Speaking carefully to Katillios, Rohese says, "You have given us much to think about it."

Grelana applauds politely.

Meril applauds politely.

Katillios softly says, "This one thanks you most humbly for allowing her to speak this afternoon."

Speaking to Katillios, you say, "It was a pleasure and I hope you visit again."

Speaking appreciatively to Katillios, Akenna says, "Thank you for coming."

Rohese applauds Katillios politely.

Dalinsia applauds politely.

Katillios curtsies low, her eyes downcast.

Akenna applauds politely.

Alisaire nods at Katillios.

Rohese softly says, "And thank you all so much for coming."

Rohese smiles.

Katillios softly says, "This one wishes you well, and hopes that you find your happiness wherever it may lay."

Speaking to Rohese, Traiva says, "Thank you for organizing these."

Grelana smiles at Rohese.

You smile at Katillios.

Katillios quietly slips out the archway.

Speaking softly to Traiva, Rohese says, "Of course, it is my pleasure, as always."

Speaking to Rohese, Faerinn says, "Thank you for having us."

Rohese gazes thoughtfully at a wide archway.

Dalinsia says, "Thank you for the lecture."

Speaking quietly to Rohese, Grelana says, "Thank you once again."

Rohese bows her head slightly toward Grelana as she drops into a deep, respectful curtsy before her.