Story Of The Faceless
The Faceless was a person, cursed to forever walk the world without anyone being able to remember his, or her, face. Not even they remember their original name, identity, or place of origin. They recorded their experiences in an autobiography that Doradan found and is currently carrying.
You now stand in my final tomb. Who am I? I've taken many names. Dalford. Marian. Chiron. Ahn'Kahet. My few close confidants even made names of their own. The Spymaster. The Shadowkeeper. One, amusingly enough, even gave me the paradoxical title "The Nameless One". My real name... Well, that takes some explaining.
In my youth, I was a fool. I had tampered with forces beyond my control, and for my hubris I was cursed - cursed so that none, not even my family, would ever recognize my face. I was a stranger to all. Once I left their vision, I was to be shortly forgotten, as if I had just been air. At first, I thought this a blessing - I could take whatever I desired, and none would ever identify me as the culprit.
But as I continued to live with my curse, I found that I had become something that I had never imagined: lonely. Living amongst everyone, yet never being anything but a passing stranger, can cause grave damage to the mind over time. It was around this time that the one, last identifying feature I could still count on, my name, had finally slipped from my mind.
Eventually, I began traveling, I took only what food would fill my belly and what water would slake my thirst. I was a shadow - because no one recognized my face, none would be able to recognize if I had payed for transportation. So, I stowed away on many ships and caravans. This continued for... I no longer recall how long.
In my travels, I came across many, though none to this day would remember me, even if they lived through the ages spanning my penning of this book and you reading it. Fascinating people, from the self-exiled Warlord of Terrera, to a novice engineer who had developed plans for some sort of "magnet train", though I do not know if his plans ever came to fruition. However, they are not the most notable of my traveling companions.
I had come upon the kingdom upon the banks of the Wailord Sea. There, I met the man who would change my life yet again: Celebrimbor, Grand Artisan. For you see, against all odds, Celebrimbor was not affected by my curse. He claims this became apparent after I had palmed apples from the same merchant multiple times, despite me wearing my face clear as day. Let it never be said that he with an eye for gemstones and rings cannot also turn their perception to the world around them. Curiosity, more than anything else, had brought Celebrimbor to my table one night at the local inn. He uttered to me three words I thought I'd never hear again: "I recognize you."
He took me in, baffled as much as I that he could put my face to memory where others could not. Having not felt true companionship in some time, I cried like a babe as I explained my plight to the man. Whether by playing to the philanthropist or the scientist in him, he agreed to help me however he could, and offered his lodgings for me in the meantime.
Those days were like an oasis in the desert. I had, finally, someone who could look upon my face with a twinkle of recognition in their eyes! I can't help but feel that I was like a lost pup to him, pleading for even the slightest attention to verify my existence. All the while, he would talk about things that I was unlearned of - metals, gemstones, runes, blessings. I did not realize until far later that he was speaking of a way to break my curse, though his words alone gave me so much hope that he could have been talking about bananas and I would have appreciated them all the same.
I lived with Celebrimbor for some time. Somewhere near two summers, if I recall correctly. This gave me plenty of time to learn, or relearn, much. When Celebrimbor was in his forge, or speaking to some noble or another, I would pass the time flipping through his books on craftsmanship, some of them self-penned. I would say he was a savant, but that would imply that he suffered elsewhere for his expertise. He was inspired, even finding a way of creating lettering in metal that would only become readable by heating the metal itself, showing no signs or marks otherwise. That secret, however, he never put to pen, and as far as I know, has never shared the secret behind it.
It was by the first winter that I had begun to notice something. Celebrimbor's manor was quite large, and the maids and servants were a fixture, going about their duties. One, however, struck me as odd. The head maid, Tallia was her name if I recall, was a young woman, seemingly barely past her twentieth winter. The first thing that struck me odd was her closeness to Celebrimbor. At first I thought of her as his mistress, but I eventually discarded the notion as I observed more. Their interactions held a sort of... fraternal, sibling feel to it, though Celebrimbor would deny having siblings whenever I would ask. Her rather... eccentric hair also struck me as odd, though I suppose that is just me grasping at straws.
By the first summer, I had learned my way around the manor and it's many hidden passages. When I asked Celebrimbor about them, he simply stated that the property's previous owner was a recluse and paranoid, always imagining ghosts waiting for him in the hallways. This was also around the time that the first, real breakthrough in a cure for my curse had come. With the aid of a local librarian, my gracious host had obtained many books from across many lands, ranging from dowsing guides from Terrera to occult treatises from Spectra, and even rare accounts of first-hand encounters with mythical beings such as Landorus and Celebi. In one of the books pertaining to long-lost civilizations, one story drew my eye - a story of a metal alloy known as "primus electrum".
In days long past, this metal was said to possess the power to nullify psychic powers, as well as Obscura and Aura, if used correctly. Most of these accounts are of dubious sources, but I followed this lead like a Stoutland. It took until my second winter before I learned that the metal itself was not the source of the magic-nullifying effect, but the gemstones, runes, and blessings placed upon it. The metal, which was an alloy of silver, gold, and iron, was merely a convenient and flashy way of applying all three, though the iron made certain blessings rather difficult.
With the mystery of the metal dispelled, we could now put our focus on the real meat of the matter. We needed three things to complete an artifact that would hopefully break my curse - gemstones, runes, and blessings. Luckily, Celebrimbor's contacts could acquire us almost any gemstone imaginable. But, to prevent wasted time and resources, we studied as to what gems might work best.
We started with the obvious choices - rubies, sapphires, diamonds, pearls, emeralds. None of those gave good results. Ruby would empower the enchantment on me further, a proposition I was in no mood to test. Sapphires, diamonds, and pearls would do nothing to it, and emeralds... you don't want to know what emeralds would do. We then took a look at more... esoteric gems. After some studies, I found that the simple green agate, so common as to find sellers in the lowliest markets, was said to act as a "ground" for magic, much like a Rhydon's horn for a Thunderbolt.
With the resources saved through proper research of the stones, we put a great deal of effort into finding an expert on runes. I recommended finding an alchemist, as they are said to be masters of manipulating that which is already present. Sure enough, we found our man, or woman I should say, at the far-off trading post of Gateon. With her aid, we began to study runes that might aid in the dispelling of my curse.
The blessing took, by far, the most time. Not just because we had to locate a proper patron to receive it from, but also because we had to prove our worth first. After many false leads regarding who could provide what, we met a priest of the Three and One. This follower of Regigigas had one request - a circlet bearing the holy symbols of his faith. Celebrimbor's skills made this easy to provide, and the priest provided us with an ingot of what he called "frosteel", a type of metal I had not heard of before. It was apparently created using a process unique to the Church of Regigigas, using Ice-Type Pokemon to aid in the forging. I do not feign knowledge of this process, as it sounds ridiculous even to me.
But now, we had all three pieces, and Celebrimbor went to work, the Alchemist aiding him with her knowledge whenever she could.
It was an agonizing wait of three months while Celebrimbor worked. He would work five days with little sleep, then rest two afterwards. At first it concerned me just how hard he was pushing himself, but in time it became this sort of rhythm. While resting, we would converse, and he would tell me of his progress - an earth rune placed just so, the agate settings coming into alignment, the metal bending just where it was supposed to go.
He had said that it would be a necklace. Green agate was a commoner's jewel, but he boasted that he could make it just as entrancing and the greatest Cragspurian diamond. He had run into issues with the frosteel, but that too became a non-issue as the craftsman's hands grew used to it. The Alchemist, who merely wanted to be referred to as such, was quite the eccentric young woman, though her work was diligent. She always seemed like she was working toward something beyond her pay at the end of her commission, like she had some goal to drive her beyond the horizon. I can appreciate that.
One day, as the head maid was delivering Celebrimbor's meal, a shout jolted all who could hear it. At first it sounded like someone had been attacked, but I soon found that to not be the case - Celebrimbor had finished his work, and the runes had flashed before his eyes, both startling him and eliciting a cry of satisfaction. It was beautiful, and if you haven't already taken it, it rests on the bust before you. The frosteel had been entwined in a complicated lattice, centered around three green agates. It did not gleam like gold or ruby, but it was entrancing nonetheless. Small runes hid on the backs of these agates - one for earth, one for water, and one for quicksilver. I did not ask as to what they meant, nor could I - the Alchemist had already departed by the next morning.
Despite my elation, I could not put on the amulet just yet. My mental state was too unstable, and I needed to calm myself. I took two days to put those meditation exercises I had read about to use before I thought myself stable enough to put it on.
It was the third day after the initial creation of the pendant. I took deep breathes, letting the air in, letting it out. After I had suppressed the Beautifly in my stomach, I slipped the pendant around my neck. We walked outside, and the first servant we passed piped up and said, "Oh, you must be the Master's friend! Good to see you!"
Despite my preparations, my heart nearly gave out at those words. All of the tension and suspense which had kept me going through the last two years finally left me, and I very nearly passed out on the floor. Celebrimbor and his head maid took me back to my room and let me sleep off my light head.
The next morning, as I was walking down the hallway, I couldn't help but chat up every single member of the servant staff whenever I would pass them. We would talk about things, and I would offer advice for problems they had, unknowingly, discussed while I was in the shadows, watching. In retrospect, I think I might have startled a few of them, but at the time I was just... so happy. So very, very happy. It was not until much later did I learn that the curse had not been removed in full, per se.
As I was walking down the hall one day, imagining what sort of profession I could take up, I envisioned the blacksmith from the marketplace. Gorrik was his name, I believe. The odd part was when I passed one of the staff, they referred to me... as him, and that if I was here to discuss something with Celebrimbor that he was out of town at the time. I was quite confused at first, and by sheer curiosity, I went to a mirror. I nearly passed out again at the sight of the blacksmith's face staring back at me.
It took quite a deal of calming exercises to think clearly. After I finally regained my composure, I decided I would test something - I looked into the mirror, I closed my eyes and envisioned in my mind the face of the head maid. I thought of her manners, her stance, her constantly-cocky facial expressions, and her ridiculous hair. I opened my eyes and saw her looking back at me, though a veil glass and polished metal.
It took me a moment to think about exactly how this happened. Unfortunately, the person I happened to be taking the form of at the time walked in on me and nearly took my head clean off my shoulders with a frying pan before I explained things. It took me a moment, but soon I was back to my old, nameless self. The head maid sent word to Celebrimbor that something was amiss, and we waited for his return.
After returning from his latest visit to Sinnoh, Celebrimbor, the head maid, and I finally sat down and discussed what had transpired. I explained how I came across my new found ability, and together we came to the conclusion that my curse had not been suppressed or broken, but reversed. Apparently, because of the rather unique properties of the frosteel that the Alchemist had not taken into account, the runes that she had used did not work as intended. So instead of having no face anyone would recognize, I could take ANY face I wanted.
This, I realized, was the beginning of my new life. The rest of the pages in this book are the following chronicles of my many names, faces, lives, and causes. The portraits, busts, and pictures here are each a face I have taken over my long life. I ask that you take this book and read of my life, if only to fulfill my selfish desire to be remembered by one soul for the real me, not for the faces I take. And of course, you no doubt came in search of the necklace. Go ahead, take it. I have no use for it anymore.