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Coinsé

Written by Gasog

(K-on-sh-ay) or (K-on-sh-eh) -- The former is the more formal pronunciation, and the latter is the more common pronunciation.   Full Item Title: Coinséadach (K-on-sh-ay-daw-k)
  Coinsé are--in simple terms-- strips of adorned fabric which have been worn in Feaíocht for generations. Over the years they have gone through many alterations in both aesthetics and usage. From being worn by military personnel, to students, and even by Ardraoi, they can be found throughout Feaíocht's history.
 

Where It All Started

  When they first started appearing coinsé were very simple. Only being used to signify ranks in the guards of Feaíocht. They comprised of a short piece of fabric that was worn over the guard's battle garment. It was attached at the shoulder on the wearer's non-dominant side and hung loosely down to their lower back.   Ranks were denoted by colour, the Argarda wore a purple coinsé, the Maoir-garda wore golden, and the cais-garda wore a vivid blue. The rest of the guards wore a dull navy, and any further denotation of ranks was shown through embroidery on the coinsé.
  However, like many aspects of life in Feaíocht it did not take long for someone to have the bright idea of infusing them with magic. It started out when a new generation of guards were brought on. They were educated in basic magic so took great pleasure in casting levitation spells on their coinsé. They said it was so they would, "billow in the wind". Which they believed made them look a lot more formidable.
  They weren't necessarily wrong -- it did look very imposing and it brought a magical flare to the uniform. However, due to both the spell’s limitations and the guards’ lack of further magical education the coinsé often ended up getting in the way or getting wrapped around nearby objects.   This caused rather a lot of annoyance within the older guards, the majority of which believed in practicality over aesthetics. A lot of them supported the increase of magic within their roles, but this was seen as a step too far. Alas, like young people everywhere they were steadfast on the idea and tried to do it anyway. So, to make sure their guards were not being put into unnecessary danger the Argarda made the decision to officially incorporate the design into the uniform, and make it a bit safer.   To keep their coinsé under control they lengthened the piece of fabric and attached a short rope to it's free end. This rope would tie on to the breast plate of the wearer's dominant side. The coinsé would pass under the dominant arm of the wearer and would be free to 'billow' without getting in the way as much. The rope used to tie it off was dyed grey.  

Curiosity & Possibilities

  The next evolution of the coinsé came from interactions between students and the cais-garda. At times a cais-garda or two were asked to step in for a class if an Ardraoi was too busy. The cais-garda and the students usually got on quite well with lessons centering on the duties and traditions of the guard, instead of the transcribing of spells and potion brewing.   Inevitably once the coinsé was made an official part of the uniform they became the main topic of discussion. Some students began to get creative with ideas of practical uses for the coinsé. Some suggested using them to carry weapons or supplies, while others speculated that in a couple of centuries they could even be able to carry out simple tasks like opening doors. The cais-garda having slightly more experience with magic than their fellow guards encouraged the students curiosity, but reminded them that no such magic existed. Some however, let their curiosity get the better of them.  
"We persuaded him to let his coinsé float around the classroom. We didn't realise it would be so hard to catch again..."
— A Student to a Ardraoi Professor; both are looking up at a run away coinsé bobbing dangerously close to a lit chandelier.
This led to many incidents around the castle. Including but by no means limited to; the starting of many a fire, the accidental dyeing of the banquet hall rug by some rather untraditional methods, and the birth of new myths that a sentient coinsé lurked in the darkest corners of the library.   Due to their popularity and potential uses -- along with a large scale bribery by the students -- the Ardraoi decided to incorporate a new type of coinsé into the students uniform.  

New Beginnings

  The guards understandably didn't want to lose what had become their signature garment, but after a bit of negotiation they eventually agreed. It took some time to find a design that would sate all parties desires, but in the end the new design was created by Ardraoi Lúile Ní Máille.   She proposed that instead of being attached at the shoulder, the coinsé would be attached at the abdominal region of the student's robe on their non-dominant side. The free end of the coinsé would be pinned to the opposite side. This pin was generally made of an inexpensive metal, perched at the top of the pin there was an engraved Farac.   They used a wider more robust piece of fabric and attached loops for scrolls, as well as pouches for a few safe-to-carry spell ingredients. The student's designated colour was green.   The new design was an immediate success with students and faculty. The students no longer had to struggle to hold all of their supplies which reduced the number of ink spills and ingredient stains on the rugs. The faculty were very relieved about the reduction in messes, but a few saw allowing a student to use a coinsé as weakness. That it was just a childish whim that they would grow tired of in a couple of months.  

Getting Messy

  A decade and a half after the initial excitement had died down, things started to become more complicated for the coinsé once more. The Ardraoi Lúile Ní Máille had continued to experiment with new designs for the coinsé. These started out simple, but soon dipped into new strains of magic. The most notable of which involved the connection of natural magic and the wielder’s conscience.   No one had ever seriously attempted to do such a thing before -- not in Feaíocht anyway.   Ní Máille didn't go about this for no reason. Not long after her design had been accepted she had seen something beneath the snow. Not the usual blue streaks of magic that shot past, but a slow, blinking eye of natural magic. She began to wonder if the magic that resided in the glacier beneath Feaíocht was alive. She proposed it to others, but it seemed just a little too far fetched for most to believe.   This encounter started the idea in her mind that she might be able to connect or extend ones conscience to and inanimate object, and what better object to choose than a coinsé. She started her work, but it was demanding and especially exhausting when only a few close friends even believed her.   People started to speculate, some that she was going mad trying to twist magic in such unheard of ways, others worried that what she was working on would haunt Feaíocht forever. In a way, the latter was not wrong. A few months later she encountered the magical being once again. It spoke to her and aided her in discovering the last piece she needed to finish her work, now it just had to be put together.  
"It’s not healthy. We have to say something!"
"She’s just invested. Ardraoi are allowed have hobbies too."
"She has missed almost every class for the past eight months, there’s a difference between being invested and being obsessed!"
— A heated discussion between two students.
by Gasog
A few months after the second encounter on a particularly stormy day in mid-winter, Ní Máille unveiled her new 'conscious' coinsé. It was free from pins or ropes, yet it floated calmly next to her. Unlike the students' this coinsé was free of loops and pouches, and the fabric was a vivid red. Along it's edges it was beautifully embroidered with a magical golden thread, called snásc.   To control it Ní Máille only had to think about what she wanted the coinsé to do and it would be done. In many respects it was like a third arm, and carried out the role of an assistant -- minus of course the ability to conversate. The other Ardraoi thought it was excellent, and immediately inquired how they could make their own. By the end of the next month every Ardraoi in Feaíocht had a new conscious coinsé.   A couple of years later the newly graduated Draoi were being awarded the materials and knowledge to make a conscious coinsé of their own. Some graduates chose to keep their old coinsé and connect with it, whereas others took new more colourful material.  

Life After Death

  It took the people of Feaíocht a while to properly understand the base workings of their coinsé. Even centuries later, some of its deepest intricacies remain a mystery.   One of these intriguing yet unexplainable things was what happened after the death of a person who had been connected to a coinsé. Once the coinsé stopped receiving commands it went limp. At first this seemed normal and they were often hung on a wall in the family home as a form of remembrance.  
by Gasog
  A few days or in some cases months after the person's death, these coinsé began to move once more. The coinsé would try to free itself from whatever was holding it, resulting in countless hooks being pulled off walls. Once free it would start to bob around the house. Some even started to do simple repetitive tasks or move things about the house.   Needless to say the first few families this happened to went through a rollercoaster of emotions. No one knew if the person's conscience or soul was stuck in the coinsé or if it was just a small part of their memory within the fabric that was echoing past commands. Eventually, it became common practice to allow the coinsé to float around doing what it liked -- just incase.   If a rogue coinsé was found floating around the city, people would often let it into their home to keep it safe until the family came looking for it. Most of the time when this happened the coinsé was visiting the homes of old friends and family members, which meant they were easily found. The coinsé were kept in as best a condition as possible by surviving family or friends. Those who had none were kept safe in the castle.  

What Remains

  After the fall of Feaíocht, every coinsé was cut from the dead. The Taleirm forces piled them up in a large room just inside the castle's main door. They could only stay long enough to clean away the bodies before they were forced out of Feaíocht by an unrelenting magical storm.   A few days after the Taleirm forces were driven out, a coinsé in the pile started to stir. It tipped off another coinsé, which began to move and subsequently nudged another. Soon a wave of movement had spread across the pile as if a spark had hit dry gorse. By the end of the week every corner of the room was occupied. Despite the lack of space some even started to play. Eventually, with every coinsé vying for space they managed to push open the door which the Taleirm forces had not bothered locking.   To this day, if you could make it past the unrelenting storm that plagues the Northern mountains, you would see the ruins of the castle. Forever haunted by its most prized creation.

Material

  In its first iterations with the guards it was made from a thin and light weight material. This was so it wouldn’t weigh down the guards as they carried out their daily duties or participated in battles. It being so thin also meant it would tear easily so the majority of guards that were unfortunate enough to get grabbed by the opposition wouldn’t be complete sitting ducks.   When they started to be used by the school, they switched to a stronger and thicker material. This helped support the weight of the student’s supplies. It also reduced the range of motion of the coinsé, so that it wouldn’t twist and dump its load on the ground.
Item type
Clothing / Accessory

Iterations

The first iteration of the coinsé in the guard of Feaíocht:

by Gasog

    The second iteration of the coinsé in the guard of Feaíocht:

by Gasog

    A loose coinsé knocking over an ingredient bottle:

by Gasog

    The student coinsé design:

by Gasog


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Comments

Author's Notes

This is my article for the Costume/Wearable challenge!  Please let me know how I can improve, this is my first published article.    Thanks for reading!!!  G


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5 Jun, 2021 22:21

Nice article! I like the extra sense of mystery that you added to it with the Coinse moving after the person has died. Also this quote was quite fun 'We persuaded him to let his coinsé float around the classroom. We didn't realise it would be so hard to catch again.. :p   You also added some nice images to give an idea about how it looks. :)   I am wondering though since student and guard are used for the wearers of the coinse at what point did it become the uniform for students actually?

Feel free to check out Worldember Overview if you want to see what I am up to!
6 Jun, 2021 17:33

Thank you! I'm glad you liked it :D Yeah, I wanted to add a bit of character to the people that would have used them. :D I'm not 100% on the timeline yet, but the idea for students to have one got the go ahead around 2 or 3 years after the official addition of the coinsé to the guards' uniforms. The students probably got to use them a year or two later. So, the students were using them 4 or 5 years after the guards' had officially started using the 2nd iteration.

Chicky the wool chicken thinks you should check out my world Bréafír!
Eternal Sage AmélieIS
Amélie I. S. Debruyne
5 Jun, 2021 22:32

This s a great article! I really love this idea and it was very fun to read :D The history section was great, with the guards just wanting to make the coinsé bellow because it is cool, then the coincé causing mayhem in the castle and starting fire because of the students XD And I love when they gained consciousness and just started to wander around after the death of their owners. The end is sad but it's also a nice image, to think of all of those coinsé being left to wander alone in the mountains :D   All of your illustrations are also very fun :D

Feel free to check my list of WE articles.
6 Jun, 2021 17:56

Thank you and thank you for the love!! I'm really glad you enjoyed it!!   Yeah they just wanted to look cool, they had no idea how far it would end up getting XD the students took great joy out of the chaos they caused XD.   They were pretty much VIPs in Feaíocht xD no one wanted to mess with them in case they would upset the person who had passed. Yeah it is, but hey at least they've got a whole city to themselves and nothing in the mountains is gonna want to eat a wiggly piece of cloth!   Thank you! I had fun drawing them :P

Chicky the wool chicken thinks you should check out my world Bréafír!
6 Jun, 2021 04:03

My first article was also for a challenge :) This is a solid article and an interesting garment. I really like that you include pronunciation at the top, and you have really thought through the evolution of the item. I particularly like the annoyance of the older guards regarding magic, and I really like that you go through the whole evolution of the item, from introduction to it no longer being used. The ending is really interesting.   You have lots of nice artwork. You should credit yourself for the work, either by adding yourself as the artist in the File Manager or by putting in a statement somewhere that all artwork unless otherwise specified is created by you.

- Hello from Valayo! And Happy WorldEmber 2021!
6 Jun, 2021 18:10

Oh cool! Which of your articles was it? -- If you don't mind me asking that is.   Thank you! I'm glad you liked the pronunciations, I wasn't sure if I had done them justice. Yeah it was super fun to watch it grow. Yeah they were not so impressed about everything being made magical XD. Thank you, I'm glad you found it interesting!   Thank you, I'll do that! I've seen a couple of people have a little area for text below the 'Add To Reading List' buttons and put disclaimers like that there, do you know if that's just a sage/grandmaster feature? I'll add it to the images too though, I was just curious :)   Thank you for the love and all your feedback!!

Chicky the wool chicken thinks you should check out my world Bréafír!
6 Jun, 2021 18:40

So you're looking for the Global Copyright Footer. I think it is available to any guild members. Look under World Settings > Configuration > Display > Global Content   If not, you can always mimic your own by adding [hr]your notice here[/hr] in the footer of your articles or in your Author's Note and just copy+paste as needed   Here's my first article - Nomas Activist And here's my current. I think you can see improvement over time :) Hunter uniform

- Hello from Valayo! And Happy WorldEmber 2021!
7 Jun, 2021 13:30

Thank you so much!! I found it and added it in along with the images.   I love your first article! It looks amazing and Sophina's never give up attitude is really inspiring. Your Hunter Uniform is so cool as well! I love all the secrecy :D

Chicky the wool chicken thinks you should check out my world Bréafír!
7 Jun, 2021 16:02

Thanks :)

- Hello from Valayo! And Happy WorldEmber 2021!
Sage George Sanders
George Sanders
6 Jun, 2021 04:25

Great first public article! Lots of content and lore. You use the tooltips well to fill in some background and pronunciation. Like Hcraven said, put your name in for artist in Image and Files for the pictures in the article. I think that is required for contests too.

Check out my worldbuilding article about Signal that pulls all the articles about her into one place.
6 Jun, 2021 18:13

Thank you! There will be articles soon for some of the things I used tooltips for here, to add a bit more background. I sure will thank you.   Thank you for the love and feedback too!!

Chicky the wool chicken thinks you should check out my world Bréafír!
10 Jun, 2021 22:47

Aw, that's so sad as an ending... I'm glad they're at least having fun.

Too low they build who build beneath the stars - Edward Young
11 Jun, 2021 17:58

Thank you for the love!   Yeah it took a bit of a turn -- they are safe and having fun though! Nothing really likes to eat pieces of wiggly cloth so they are free to roam :)

Chicky the wool chicken thinks you should check out my world Bréafír!