Unexpected Inspiration Connection: Sol & Etri


[Sol's] sobs intensified and Etri ached for a way to help. He could not change what had happened and could not bring back what was lost, but perhaps he could influence the future. He now knew that he would not survive without [Sol's] warmth and in this state [Sol] could not take care of himself. Should they be caught, their individual magics would likely protect the other. If they were to live, it must be together. If they were to have a future, they must abandon their past. Etri took a deep breath. He had already failed the rules against touch by grabbing [Sol's] wrist to pull him away from fire and death and into the relative safety of the snow. He would willingly fail over and over if it meant comforting the only person who mattered.

- excerpt from "Stuck With You"

The twins didn't always know that they were related despite growing up in the same building in Montglace. Their home culture is strict, with rules against pretty much everything, and children born of priests and priestesses are raised by the temple– although "raised" is a pretty terrible word for it. There's no concept of family, no relationships of any kind allowed. When Etri and Sol were kids, before Etri's magic manifested and he was required to wear the full body covering of an apprentice priest, they were frequently called by the wrong name. They both just assumed this meant no one bothered to learn the names of the kids and young apprentices who ran errands for the Sanctuaries of Shadow and Light. It wasn't until years later when Etri was delivering a message for one of the high ranking priest/esses that he came across a mirror for the first time. He took a risk by looking at himself out of pure curiosity... and then all the name mistakes made sense. He looked like one of the other boys in the temple!

Etri told Sol and since Montglace has no word for brother or twin, the only thing they could come up with was "person who looks like me." They decided that this meant that they must be important to each other and took more risks by sneaking around to spend time together. The two were lucky enough to not be discovered, but their luck ran out soon after when Sol was caught trying to escape with the boy he'd fallen in love with. The punishment was death, yet somehow Sol survived. In that resulting fire and chaos, Etri made the most important decision of his life: he'd give up everything he had to keep Sol safe.

The two have been together ever since, with never more than a day spent apart. Together they made it south and eventually into Concordia. Sol kept Etri safe by keeping the snow away. Etri kept Sol safe by stealing food and clothing that they needed to survive. When Etri was offered a position with a carnival troupe, Sol followed. When Sol decided that he wanted to change to a new troupe, Etri followed. They may not have known what "brother" meant at first, but now they see the meaning as "someone who is always there."

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For the moodboard I balanced their light/shadow, sun/moon theme and based it around the surname of "Celeste" that they picked when they came to Concordia. This is part of their carnival act because Sol's light magic lets him summon fire and Etri's shadow magic lets him snuff it out, and their personal aesthetics are largely based on this act. Sol's all bright sunshine-y yellows and oranges, Etri's all nighttime-y goth with blacks and navy blue and silver. Sol has sun tattoos on his hands and forearms, Etri has moons and constellations on his. They no longer look as similar as they did when they first found each other and it isn't always obvious at first that they're related. Once someone sees them interacting and the way they show constant support and loyalty to the other, that's when it becomes most apparent.

CONVERSATION

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