Cycle of the Dreaming Sea
Thousand Silk Blossoms
Thousand Silk Blossoms is a beautiful youth. He has a peaches and cream complexion and captivating hazel colored eyes. His smile is sensual yet playful, occasionally reveling a set of perfectly maintained teeth. He is of a slight build, yet moves with the grace of professional dancer. His long, soft brown hair is always kept immaculate, either cascading down his back and shoulders, or pulled up into tight top knot via a delicate coral comb or decorated hair pin. He adorns himself in colorful and brocaded silks, all the pinnacle of Imperial fashion.
Thousand Silk Blossoms, one of the most famed courtesans of the exotic shores of the Dreaming Sea, was a child of humble beginnings. He was born to a merchant and artisan in the Nighted City of Champoor. His name was Silk back then, named after his mother’s favorite material to build new creations out of. His parents however, ran afoul of the Seven Thunders, one of the myriad of criminal gangs that struggled for power under the darkened skies of the Nighted City. Murdered violently before Silk’s eyes as his parents had hidden away him in an empty wardrobe. Silk soon after fled into the dark streets for his life.
Only eight years old, he had to learn to survive on the brutal streets of the Nighted City. He used his cherubic features, singing voice, and raw talent for dancing to earn the slivers of dinars needed to feed himself. He performed on street corners, plazas, and outside the great market. He hid himself in dark crevices and abandoned places to avoid the older street urchins who would try and steal what little Silk had.
One day his worst nightmare came true, and a gang of older urchins jumped him. They overwhelmed the small boy and stole his food, dinar bits, and began to beat him savagely so his “pretty face” couldn’t earn him anymore coin. It was then the boy who would become Silk’s big brother came to his rescue, Dull Stone. While Stone was only a couple years older than Silk, he stood as tall as a grown man and drove the gang away with his meaty fists, and imposing stature. Silk was deeply grateful, and used what little bits he had to buy his rescuer a warm meat pie, Dull Stone’s first full meal in three days. From that moment on, the two boys were inseparable. Dull Stone was the muscle and protector, while Silk used his talents at street performing to earn enough money to ensure they were both fed, and occasionally had a warm place to sleep. Some nights, while Silk slept, Dull Stone would sneak off and not return until daybreak. Silk never knew where Stone went, only that he always came back battered and bruised. Silk would tend to Stone’s wounds with no question, even as it hurt his heart to see his protector so injured. But always Stone would have a few extra slivers and bits to help feed them, and for that Silk was most grateful. Silk grew to love his big brother, and dreamed of a day they could have a real home. Silk also dreamed of the sweet revenge they would enact upon on the Seven Thunders for killing his parents.
Neither day ever came, for fate intervened. A member of the Dragon Caste of Prasad, Aakesh Ophris, was traveling through Champoor with his beloved concubine, Sita “The Golden Orchid” Kutarah, on important business with the Court of Secrets. Sita spotted the cherub faced boy singing on the street corner and desired to bring him home. She expressed to her beloved master that she desired the precious boy and implored him to retrieve Silk as “gift” to prove his love. Aakesh compiled, for garnering a street orphan was a trivial matter for a God such as him. Through a combination of manipulation, and ruthless hirelings separating Dull Stone and Silk, the young boy was enticed to leave with Sita and Aakesh back to The Empire of Prasad.
It was Sita who gave him the name Thousand Silk Blossoms, as a child with such a beautiful face deserved a far more beautiful name. She ensured her precious new child was given the finest clothing, private tutors, good medicine, a warm bed, was fed daily, and pampered like a little prince. In exchange, Silk was expected to be obedient, be seen but not heard, embrace the Pure Way, and entertain via singing, dance or poetry on demand. When he came to the age of manhood, Sita began to instruct him in arts of massage, seduction, and bed warming. This was to ensure he always had a place in court, as a beautiful bed-companion to the often lusty and passionate Dragon-Blooded of the Ophris Clan. More covertly, Sita taught him the secret art of the Dreaming Pearl Courtesan, so he might defend himself or his patrons from assassins who assume he is merely a pretty throat to be slit.
It was one season after his nineteenth name-day that Sita’s dead body was discovered in the harem, her throat bruised and face pale. It was a shocking murder that shook all in the residents of the Ophris harem to their core. Rumors ran wild: she was murdered by a jealous rival, a Fair folk had infiltrated the palace and this was just the beginning of it campaign of terror, Aakesh himself killed her when he discover her treachery of carrying another man’s child, and all a manner of other theories. Regardless the truth of the matter, it was Silk who inherited all the wealth she had accumulated via gifts from her beloved master and favor trading among the courtiers of Clan Ophris. Terrified that he would meet a similar fate, Silk petitioned Aakesh to gather his newly inherited wealth and seek his a life outside the Harem as now he was a man grown.
Aakesh was willing to grant his request, yet needed one more task of him before he could be granted his freedom. He needed Silk to service an entity “with a desire for the flesh of beautiful men” to satisfy a bargain made with the local spirits courts. Wary, yet confident in his skills in the sensual arts he immediately acquiesced. When the night came, Silk was alarmed to discover he was paired with a divinity called a Daka, whom have a reputation for devouring their lovers once they are satiated from sex. Infuriated, Silk knew it was going to take all the skills he learned from Sita to survive. He brought it all to bear to seduce the flesh eating god with his words, eyes, and body. It was during the exchange that the power of the Unconquered Sun flooded into his soul and he took the Second Breath. Energized by his new found Exalted might, and the protections of ancient oaths from the violence of the divinity’s hunger, Silk took the Daka’s desire and weaved it into passionate devotion. He remained entangled, naked, and in the constant throes of passion for two weeks in the divinity’s Sanctum. Enough time for his burning caste mark to fade into invisibility. Silk bound the Daka to secrecy under heaven regarding his Second Breath, and emerged from the Sanctum whole and intact. Before his former master could react, he gathered his possessions, emptied Sita’s accounts, and purchased passage via caravan out of Prasad to start a new life as far away as he possibly could.
Silk eventually settled and purchased an Okia in Ishvan. It is called The Cerulean Garden, and it is here he entertains clients, and hosts salons.