Horror Circle

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El Café del Horror, la posada más popular de Birdland, esconde tras pasillos pasando su cocina un patio interno rodeado de galerías. Allí, Nancy, la dueña de la posada, cede su espacio a una pequeña agrupación artística-filosófica, quienes se reúnen a producir arte, actuar, y participar en intensos o distendidos debates. Por regla general, los Horribles son personas de espíritu artístico y rebelde, y que cuestionan o desconfían con diferentes grados de intensidad de las bases del Reino de Tháur, generalmente considerando a Naelín como una persona poco preparada para gobernar, o en el peor de los casos un oportunista o un vago, y generalmente descreen de la supuesta capacidad de Dinner para proteger a los Thaurínos de las amenazas externas.   Pese a lo inofensivo de su naturaleza, el Circulo de Horror es una sociedad secreta, a la que se accede únicamente por invitación, luego de la aprobación general de los otros miembros y la aprobación específica de Nancy. Sin embargo, los rumores circulan, y los clientes habituales del Cafe del Horror dan por sentado que Nancy oculta algo y que ciertos individuos siempre parecen aparecer y desaparecer velozmente en la posada, pero pese a las sospechas, los clientes saben que es mejor hacer la vista gorda y no meterse con Nancy.

Horribles de renombre

Muchos de los miembros del Círculo del Horror son profesionales o maestros de alguna rama del arte, autores de obras importantes o simplemente artistas de renombre.  

Danae el cartógrafo

Danae es un escriba y cartógrafo muy exitoso. Su mapa del archipiélago de Haan producido y perfeccionado luego de años de investigación se convirtió en el mapa estándar usado a través de los reinos, copiado cientos de veces.  

Veld el Imaginativo

Veld es un escritor de ficción y no ficción, conocido por haberse dedicado a recopilar y redactar información sobre vida diaria y las costumbres de los societarios, y sobre la naturaleza, la geografía y las naciones del archipiélago. Su obra más conocida es el Libro de los Hábitos y las Bestias, una masiva enciclopedia conformada por artículos sobre todo tipo de tópicos respecto al archipielago de Haan.  

Nile el Dramaturgo

Si bien Nile no produjo obras de particular renombre, es un afamado actor y músico que participa en obras musicales y teatrales a través de todo Tháur.
 
Nancy
There is a door right by the bars in the most popular inn in the City of Birdland, the Horror Café.
It leads to a tight hallway and into the kitchen, but continuing to the back you will reach a squared, open-air patio with terracotta-coloured floors. It is surrounded by a slightly elevated white path covered by a wooden gallery, and the right side leads to the inn's garden, full of carefully grown edible and aromatic plants and clearly off-limits for anyone but the cooks and the owner.   The owner of the café, a stern grown woman called Nancy, provides this area for the free use of the Horror Circle, a group of bohemian artists and philosophers that get together to produce all sorts of art, to practice plays, and to engage in sometimes heated debates on metaphysical, moral and political topics.  

History

A fiercely guarded past

The origins of the Horror Circle are murky, to say the least. It is thought to be at least 20 years old, but the more one tries to dig into the older stories, the harder it gets to get a word out of the members.
Those that date from the older times, such as Adikari, barely even admit the existence of the organization.

The Egg or the Lyraik

It is unknown whether the Circle was named after the café, or if it was the other way around. Those old enough to know won't tell.

A bubbling pot of talent

The Horror Circle saw the birth of many great works of art and artistic pairings in its history.   Among these, it is known that the singer Adikari met Divina there, and formed The Deep-Throated Auralists recruiting Nancy's sister Rake alongside two other musicians.   Veld the Imaginative was invited to the Circle by Danae, shortly after their meeting, and went on to form the professional partnership that bought The Book of the Habits and Beasts, the biggest encyclopaedia in the archipelago, into existance.
 

Traditions

Dust to share

Whenever Nancy manages to get some cuppat's dust on her hands, the members of the Circle team up to buy and share a session of artistic high.
They will often take turns with it so that the sober ones can take notes on the ideas spewed out by the intoxicated one, but for special occasions, they would consume the psychoactive together and just enjoy a time of unparalleled creativity.

No clothing, no hinderances

It is unclear when it started, but what is clear is that the Horribles consider clothing optional in their meetings, especially when performing plays or dances.
Nile is perhaps the biggest proponent, being a big fan of casual nudity in general.
While new members usually take a while to adjust, older ones don't bat an eye anymore when someone suddenly starts reciting a deeply moving poem while undressing for extra dramatic effect.
 

Political Stance

Though the Circle is not focused on politics in the slightest, political debate is a usual topic, and there is a shared sentiment of dissastisfaction with the new kingdom's legitimacy. The circle still holds to its Merthiornite roots, and doesn't consider Dinner to be a source of national pride or security.
However, they mainly take issue with the origin of the new state, and the actual opinion on policy-making and leadership varies.  

Renowned Horribles

Portrait of Danae, a holding his peace bird pen and a book containing a map
Danae by Naelin
A renowned cartographer and scribe, known for his map of the Haan Archipelago.
Usually seen alongside Nile, trying to engage him in conversation about the politics of Thaur.
Probably the most active member of the Circle, he can be found there almost every day dancing or practicing theather plays, usually in the nude.

A portrait of Divina wearing a leather harness and a bell necklace, and holding a cup and a spicy red fruit
Divina
The quirky musician sometimes brings cumbersome instruments through the Café's backdoor to play ominous melodies.
Though he has only attended the Café to catch up with Nancy in the recent years, the popular singer and actor used to practice his lines in the Circle in his younger years.

A portrait of Veld the Imaginative holding a copy of their encyclopedia
Veld the Imaginative
The author of The Book of the Habits and Beasts spends most of their time in their home in the island of Ruh, but makes a point to visit the Circle every time they travel to Birdland.

The Amateur Historian

The apprentice historian by Naelin
A poet lost to purple prose, he tends to stay much of the time in a corner, writing romantic laments.

We are here and we will do

Type
Secret, Brotherhood
Demonym
Horrible
Leader
Location
Notable Members
Related Ethnicities
Horror Café
Building / Landmark | Mar 13, 2022

The most popular tavern in Birdland City, headquarters of the Horror Circle

 
The Horror Café
  The following image features a nude figure


Cover image: Writers Banner by Naelín

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Author's Notes

This article was inspired by TJ Trewin's 400 Worldbuilding Prompts prompt N°230: "Describe a social or hobby group in a settlement of your world. How large is the group and what activities do they practise? Are they part of a larger network?"


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25 Apr, 2022 00:06

I bet those wild sessions of creativity produce some really interesting work. I love the colourful cast of characters too. :)