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Literature
Shadows Over Innistrad - Alternate Ending
"You should know this place," Markov says, getting up off me, wiping his fang-filled mouth. "This is the place where you were made."
I rise. The wound at my neck bleeds, but I let it bleed. Somehow, in this place, it feels like healing. "Where you made me what I am," I say.
"Let me help you, my child," the monster says. "I could...cleanse your mind. Make you a proper instrument of virtue again. I'll make you anew."
Never. "If I am not the daughter you want..." I say.
He winces.
"...then we must battle again, and again, forever. For I will never yield. I am no monster's instrument. I will not be altered by the likes of you."
I can feel my strength returning already, here in this holy place. I am inexhaustible. In a moment, I will be ready to strike him down again.
"No," Markov says. "This ends. Now."
(Continued from Avacyn's POV) 
He is upon me once more.  My feet barely stand beneath me before his fingers close over my t
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the point at which we stop lying
do you know i say everything in one breath now
because if i didn't i don't think i'd get it out
but i'm running empty on the promises i made to myself
and to everyone else.
are you okay?
no, not really.
:iconinthespacebetween:inthespacebetween
:iconinthespacebetween:inthespacebetween 21 11
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Watchers

I gotta be honest about something for a second.  

I've been seeing so much division in the wake of the United States' presidential election last November, and it's carried through the holiday season into the new year.   Our media is absolutely saturated with left and right wing reporters, all of whom spin the news just to get ratings, rather than telling the truth and reporting on facts.  

Social media has blown up to a point where political platforms and soap boxes have become the new "it" thing.   And all for what? To prove a point?  To showcase how different we all are?  To exemplify that if you stand for nothing, you'll fall for anything?  To give the world yet another reason to dislike all Americans? 

I've gotten overly saturated, I suppose.  I've thought about just taking a nice long break from social media for a while.  

But then I hop onto DA for the first time in literally months.  I open my page up to thousands of notifications telling me just how creative and incredible people are on here.   How art is celebrated, and not politicized.  People come together over the things that they love, and enjoy, and there's no hatred behind any of it.   No political agendas being driven by unchecked bloggers and overzealous lobbyists creating cess pools of hate.   None of it.  

Instead I see people favoriting and commenting on costumes, photography, digital art, sketches, and writing.  Forms of art that are all so different, yet share similar traits.   Everything is backed by the passion that we all share here, and the love that we have found for different cultures through art.  This is the kind of stuff that I want to see more of on a daily basis.   Because it makes my heart happy, to see humanity coming together for another purpose other than to protest a political agenda, or to cry out at the injustice of an action taken by a political leader...all things that we have absolutely no control over.   

I wanted to share a little piece of my mind and heart with you all, and to tell whoever is reading this silly little journal post that I'm thankful for you.  

Yes.  

YOU.

I may not know your name or have ever met you in person, but I am thankful to have found a way to connect with you.  A way that is positive, uplifting, and happy.   So please do me a favor, and keep being amazing.   Keep posting breathtaking photos, incredible cosplay, talented digital art, AMAZING sketches, and BOSS AF writing!  Because these are all creative things that connect us all together as humans.   Our love and our passion transcends political identity/affiliation, national boundaries, our race and ethnic backgrounds, our religious and spiritual choices, and our places of birth.   

Always remember you beautiful people, that through the dark times, you always have the capacity to find the good in others.  :heart: 

*hugs* 
  • Listening to: The Elder Scrolls Online OGS

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GracefulNightingale
Kaybae
Artist | Hobbyist | Artisan Crafts
United States
I am a writer.
I am a cosplayer.
I am a former sorority girl.
I am a photographer.
I am a Gamer Girl.
I'm a retired gymnast.


Current Residence: Atlanta, GA
Favourite genre of music: Classical, Jazz, 80's anything, video game, pop and in extremely rare cases, hip hop. XD
Favourite photographer: Gapple Photography & DBZ Studios
MP3 player of choice: my iPhone 7 Plus
Favorite character: Avacyn, the Angel of Hope :heart:
FAVORITE QUOTE: "The first draft of ANYTHING is shit" - Ernest Hemmingway
Interests

Activity


"You should know this place," Markov says, getting up off me, wiping his fang-filled mouth. "This is the place where you were made."

I rise. The wound at my neck bleeds, but I let it bleed. Somehow, in this place, it feels like healing. "Where you made me what I am," I say.

"Let me help you, my child," the monster says. "I could...cleanse your mind. Make you a proper instrument of virtue again. I'll make you anew."

Never. "If I am not the daughter you want..." I say.

He winces.

"...then we must battle again, and again, forever. For I will never yield. I am no monster's instrument. I will not be altered by the likes of you."

I can feel my strength returning already, here in this holy place. I am inexhaustible. In a moment, I will be ready to strike him down again.

"No," Markov says. "This ends. Now."

(Continued from Avacyn's POV) 

He is upon me once more.  My feet barely stand beneath me before his fingers close over my throat.   His strength restricts my breathing, as we grapple in the cellar.  The tendons that had been severed in my wing burn, and for the first time I feel the pain from wounds that will not heal.

Markov slams me against the alter, the impact strong enough to break bones.   I lift my eyes to his face, and I am surprised to see heartbreak written in his hard gaze.    This is a human emotion, one that I am quite familiar with.   To see it reflected in the eyes of a monstrous leech makes me take pause.

Sorin takes advantage of my distracted state, and his grip restrains movement.  I feel his fangs pierce the skin at my throat a second time, and his jaw locks upon me.  The pain is agonizing.   The fire that had ignited my blood at the words he had spoken just moments before is now dissipating.

The grip upon my throat tightens, cutting off air completely.   My creator does not relent, even as I claw at his arm to free myself.  His vampiric power drains the life from me, much as he had done with my angels.

His teeth rip free from my throat.  My vision has begun to fade, the buzzing that had remained a constant companion in my mind does not disappear. 

The last thing I hear as I feel myself fall, is my name.

Avacyn.

 

<><><>  

The seeds of man are rotten.

There is bright light encompassing me as I wake.  The vampire is nowhere to be found.  The two fiends, no, humans that I had mistaken for demons, are also gone. 

“Why were you created?”   The commanding voice holds power, shooting into my ears and through my mind.

I thrash on the cold ground, but cannot move.  This, I realize when my wings cannot even move beneath me.  Anger surges through me as I feel the biting iron that has bound both of my hands and feet as well as my neck to the concrete floor.   The light begins to fade, and as the glare clears, I can see him. 

We remain in the cellar.  My form is bound to the exact place where I first came into this wretched world.   The purpose to cleanse and protect this realm instilled into my brain.  That purpose I now know to be this vampire’s will and nothing more.

His gaze is cold.  “Answer me, Avacyn.  Why were you created?”

The buzzing grows louder in my mind as I meet his gaze.   The seeds of man are rotten 

I am to protect!   I hear the mantra in my mind.

Kelse’s mangled form flashes through my memory.  The burning villages erupt again before my eyes.  The screams from my divine servants fill my ears as the memories resurface.  The look of sheer terror on the child Maeli’s face as he flees into the woods.

My lips part, but I cannot scream. 

My creator’s voice cuts through the chaos.  “Avacyn!” 

When I look upon him again, he holds my spear.  My symbol that once held such divine power and meaning.   It glows anew, with the virtuous strength that it had on the day of my creation.  

The memory of my creator bestowing it upon me resurfaces now too.  Without prompt nor desire, I can feel the tears begin to form.  The darkness fades from my vision as I watch within my minds’ eye, my creator imbuing me with purpose. 

The buzzing in my mind grows to a deafening roar.   Sorin wields my spear with skill reflected by his power.   He points it towards me, rendering control over my mind. 

“Tell me why you were created.”  His voice commands.  I can feel his magic coursing over me, but my body is too weak to fight.

Surrender to a monster...to my creator...   As I war back and forth within my mind, Sorin comes to stand over me.

A cry spills from my lips, as I feel the conflict wrenching my heart.  The power in my creator’s voice challenges the one I have been hearing for months.  The progenitor of destruction in Innistrad.   Those six little words, once bearing such powerful strength, are beginning to fade away. 

The seeds of men are rotten.

No.

“I am Avacyn.”  My voice cracks.  “I am to protect.” 

Markov stands over me.  I cannot see his face, the darkness of the cellar has cloaked his features, and I cannot see beyond the brightness of the power I once wielded.  

“That is right, Avacyn.”  His voice is softer now.  “You were created to protect.  To protect Innistrad, and those who would perish without your aid.” 

Confusion clouds my mind again.  Protect...humans.   Mankind.  The ones who were guilty of destruction and death, not so different from Markov’s bloodthirsty brethren. 

The demonic whisper returns again, a weak presence in the back of my mind.

As if he could read my thoughts, Sorin sneers.  His fangs flash against the light, and are all I can see.

“Your imperfections are mine to mend.” The authority in his words belays the doubt gathering in my mind once more.  “You were meant to resist darkness, Avacyn.”  With those words, the tip of my spear is placed on the center of my chest.  The light grows to a painful level, and I feel tendrils of magic crawling over me, into my mind.  Resisting does nothing, as his magic overpowers mine.

The demonic presence releases my mind, but not without ripping away a piece of me.  The pain is blinding, the reality of my actions bears down upon me, and I cannot breathe.  

As the light fades, human emotions, the ones I witnessed many times over, fill my mind and heart.

Sorin’s voice is soft.   “You are my guardian of order.  All beings are subject to your judgment.  You must recognize this.”

The anger from my confusion disappears.  Months of vindication lift from my mind and heart, and I can see the true meaning of the destruction that I have wrought upon this land. 

My spear is tossed aside, and my creator kneels beside me.  His fingers brush against my chin as he touches my face.  “My angel,” I can hear the pain in his words.   “Can you see me now?” 

“Sorin,” I whisper. “I have not protected.” 

His grip upon my jaw tightens.  “Your mind has been lost for many months, Avacyn.  The time you suffered within the bounds of the Helvault has tainted you.   You need to regain your strength, but that must be done through time.”

A single tear breeches the barrier of my eye, and slips down my cheek.  It is the physical manifestation of grief I did not know I was capable of knowing.  I have failed Innistrad.  The humans.  I lift my gaze.

I have failed my creator.

My hand moves, lifting with what little allowance it has been given, to grasp his. 

The action does little to faze him, but I can see a shift within his gaze.  Those cold eyes soften as they meet my own. 

“I have failed them all.”  My voice is nothing more than a whisper.  The blood he took from me shows him the truth behind my words.   Sorin looks upon me, an unreadable look upon his features.

“You need to rest, Avacyn.  Your mind has been through much, and the people of this world must have faith if you are to earn their trust once more.”

My eyes close.  The weight that pressed into my mind makes the thought of resting easier.  I can feel Sorin’s fingers gently tracing the length of my jaw.  “The power within this place shall help to restore your strength.”  His words are soft.   “I shall come for you soon.”

When he rises to his feet, my eyes open.  I see the human emotion in his gaze once more.   “You are the other half,” He murmurs softly.  “This...world needs you.”   He retrieves my spear, taking it with him as he turns to leave. 

“Rest well.”

 

.

.

.

A/N:  The last installment of Shadows Over Innistrad regarding Avacyn completely broke my heart to read.   The simple thought in my mind was that Sorin wouldn't abandon her to a demonic end, nor would he resort to her demise after the amount of power and energy he used to create her in the first place.   Though she refused him when he offered to help her, it was the corruption that had spoken in response.   There is a part of Sorin that was placed in Avacyn when he created her, and it made more sense to me, after the demise of the Helvault, that he would have forced the impurities from her mind, rather than destroy her.   Innistrad needs her, as the balance that Sorin put in place with her creation proved.   Writing this alternative ending helped to give my grieving heart some peace, as I felt that it would have been a realistic ending as well.   I'm not sure which direction WoTC will take for the plane of Innistrad now, nor for Sorin.  :( 

The italicized portion of the beginning of this work belongs to Wizards of The Coast.  More specifically, it belongs to the literary master, Ken Troop, from his story, “A Gaze Blank and Pitiless.”   I own no parts of these characters, except for the love that I carry for them in my heart.  

(i.e. Please don't sue me for writing this, lol) 

Billy and Kimberly unmasked!
Our photographer asked us to take our helmets off while he was shooting us, because he said he felt that we resembled the original actors from the series.   We both were so honored!  :D 

Photographer credit: www.facebook.com/MSwaC/?pnref=…
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Feb 28, 2017
:icongracefulnightingale:GracefulNightingale has changed their username (formerly YourBrandOfHeroin)
I gotta be honest about something for a second.  

I've been seeing so much division in the wake of the United States' presidential election last November, and it's carried through the holiday season into the new year.   Our media is absolutely saturated with left and right wing reporters, all of whom spin the news just to get ratings, rather than telling the truth and reporting on facts.  

Social media has blown up to a point where political platforms and soap boxes have become the new "it" thing.   And all for what? To prove a point?  To showcase how different we all are?  To exemplify that if you stand for nothing, you'll fall for anything?  To give the world yet another reason to dislike all Americans? 

I've gotten overly saturated, I suppose.  I've thought about just taking a nice long break from social media for a while.  

But then I hop onto DA for the first time in literally months.  I open my page up to thousands of notifications telling me just how creative and incredible people are on here.   How art is celebrated, and not politicized.  People come together over the things that they love, and enjoy, and there's no hatred behind any of it.   No political agendas being driven by unchecked bloggers and overzealous lobbyists creating cess pools of hate.   None of it.  

Instead I see people favoriting and commenting on costumes, photography, digital art, sketches, and writing.  Forms of art that are all so different, yet share similar traits.   Everything is backed by the passion that we all share here, and the love that we have found for different cultures through art.  This is the kind of stuff that I want to see more of on a daily basis.   Because it makes my heart happy, to see humanity coming together for another purpose other than to protest a political agenda, or to cry out at the injustice of an action taken by a political leader...all things that we have absolutely no control over.   

I wanted to share a little piece of my mind and heart with you all, and to tell whoever is reading this silly little journal post that I'm thankful for you.  

Yes.  

YOU.

I may not know your name or have ever met you in person, but I am thankful to have found a way to connect with you.  A way that is positive, uplifting, and happy.   So please do me a favor, and keep being amazing.   Keep posting breathtaking photos, incredible cosplay, talented digital art, AMAZING sketches, and BOSS AF writing!  Because these are all creative things that connect us all together as humans.   Our love and our passion transcends political identity/affiliation, national boundaries, our race and ethnic backgrounds, our religious and spiritual choices, and our places of birth.   

Always remember you beautiful people, that through the dark times, you always have the capacity to find the good in others.  :heart: 

*hugs* 
  • Listening to: The Elder Scrolls Online OGS
After a long time being away from the convention scene, I'm finally sewing again. :heart:   Looking forward to Dragon*Con this year to debut my latest project!  We'll see how this goes!  :heart:

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:iconalelilie:
alelilie Featured By Owner Apr 25, 2017
Thank you for the favorites! :) 
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:iconbran-ridire:
Bran-Ridire Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2017
Love the new name!
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:icongracefulnightingale:
GracefulNightingale Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2017  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Thank you so much!  :aww: :heart: 
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Pajunen Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2017
 
Thank you for the :+devwatch:
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Pajunen Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2016
Thank you for the :+fav:
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:icongracefulnightingale:
GracefulNightingale Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2017  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Of course!!  Your work is absolutely stunning!!! :heart: :heart: 
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Pajunen Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2017
:bow:
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:icongracefulnightingale:
GracefulNightingale Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2017  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
:heart: :heart: :heart: 
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madziulkabr Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks for the +fav !
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Darthsandr Featured By Owner Mar 24, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
thanks for fave
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