((Reposted here because I very much doubt Swain WOULDN'T find out about this letter in some way. Also, because plot~ X3))
Originally Posted by Ask Daržus
-Riven would receive a letter stamped with the Noxian seal. The sender was Darius.-
I know not if you would bother opening this. Perhaps you would rather crumple this and throw it into a burning fire place. Watch the paper and the ink turn to ash instead of reading what I would write and send. Perhaps I would not blame you for doing such a thing, after you and I do not see eye to eye.
I remember days before Ionia, before the Pacification Campaign where I had heard word of a Noxian woman who had become a figure head among her fellow soldiers. Someone who had come from a place I had come from. She used a weapon larger than her own and pressed herself to become greater than anything else. Her eyes held no pause, no hesitation, no fear, no mercy. A sword was forged just for her and given to her by the High Command, something that had not been done for generations. I was proud to have met her, if only once.
She was sent to Ionia for Darkwillís conquest and she had died there. At her funeral, I could not help but think that Noxus had lost someone truly extraordinary. That Noxus had lost someone special. Someone who would have possibly heralded a change. Instead of that, she was thrown to some senseless front and died some dog death. She deserved better.
I later found she lived, the sole survivor of her unit. Resurfaced and joined the Institute of War as a Champion. But her reemergence though meant only one thing. She ran for fourteen years. Fourteen years. It disgusted me. Someone like her, running. I donít think I had ever hated anyone so much before in my life.
I am not ignorant to what you believe I am. A cancer to your former city state. Some undesirable lump to be cut out. But while you ran, I was doing something about Noxus. And I still am doing something about it. You are not and you have not for fourteen years. While you think I am just another obstacle that you believe you can step over, I want you to consider that.
I know about you as well. I know how you clawed and cleaved your way through the ranks, executing those that you found to be inferior or inept in their positions, and took them for yourself. You pledged yourself to Jericho Swain and all that he stood for, and executed Keiran Darkwill after he was defeated by the current Grand General in a duel for the position. Your brother is a showy, egotistical and narcissistic executioner that is the closest thing Noxus has to a celebrity other than Katarina Du Couteau, and perhaps myself back in the day. You have pledged yourself to the betterment of Noxus, to building up its strength, and yet, you support Jericho Swain and his puppet-mistress LeBlanc.
I find it sad that someone such as yourself would cling to false ideals, even after seeing the effects of those ideals in action. You support the two most dishonest and deceitful people ever to wander the halls of the High Command. You side with those that would sooner use trickery and underhanded manipulation to twist things to their favor, rather than fighting for it with their own two hands. Your Grand General knew of the League's plots for power, and used that to gain a foothold in Noxus. This isn't back-door politics, General, this is public knowledge. He allowed a dispute over mining rights to escalate into a small scale war, risked the lives of Noxian citizens in the process, as well as the time of peace we enjoy, and all to gain power. Is this kind of dishonesty the face of Noxus that you wish to show Valoran? Where is the strength, the honor in that?
You've fought on the fields of battle, just as I have. You've decimated soldiers and raised the morale of troops in times of dire circumstances, but have you ever been forced to kill the innocent, General? Have you ever been mislead, lied to, by the very ideals of strength and power to which you had pledged your entire life, your very being? I have lived through an unspeakable hell that few can fathom, General, and I can tell you with absolute honesty that the strong do not always survive. Those who died that day on the fields were not weak. They were some of the strongest and most determined men and women I have ever known. They gave all they were to Noxus, and in the end, Noxus turned her back on them, and unleashed a weapon that cared not for strength of any kind. It melted them. Friend, foe, anything in between, it didn't matter. All were lost, except for me. I watched as they were taken from this life by an act of true cowardice. And these tactics, these weapons, this is what you support, General.
You, too, were orphaned at a young age, or so I can gather. You lived your life for your brother and yourself, trying to survive in the harsh and unforgiving Noxian streets and slums. Just like me, you found a place to live within the military. But, unlike me, you have never had your faith broken entirely. You have never had everything you loved and lived for torn away, ripped from you, as you were helpless to stop it from, literally, melting away before your very eyes. All I knew, all I loved, fought for, cared for, lived
for, was Noxus, and in that one act of dishonor and death, it was taken from me. You can not understand what that is like. You have never faced it. You have never faced absolute and crushing failure at the hands of something you were powerless to stop.
So, I was left with nothing: no family, no home that I could trust, and no beliefs to fall back upon to give me strength. I was reduced to nothing but a mere shell of a person, like a specter, a ghost, wandering the vast wilderness of Ionia in a daze. My loss, the pain that I endured was more than most any could bear, General. See for yourself the toll Ionia has taken on our countrymen. Visit the institutions for those deemed "damaged" by the effects of war. You will see the look in their eyes, the tremble in their hands, and hear the screams and the weeping as the events they were forced to endure haunt them eternally. You say I ran from Noxus, from my past for years. It is impossible to run from the horrors I have witnessed, General. They follow me in my sleep, haunt me in my waking life, and call to me in times of solitude.
What they do, however, is force me to press onward. I am a soul, trapped in a moment in time that I can never escape. The part of me that died on those fields never left it, and to this day, and until the day that I die, part of me will always be there. The souls that were killed by my hand, by the chemicals of lesser men, and lost in needless slaughter and violence will not be at rest until I atone for the sins that Noxus, that my own hands, have wrought. I have walked through a valley of death and darkness to get where I am today, General. If ever you doubt my ability, my strength, or my determination to reforge Noxus into something truly strong, truly great, then I dare you to test my mettle in combat. That is
the Noxian way, the way you test one's strength and worthiness, is it not?
If you doubt me so much, hate what I am, what I've done so much, then prove to me that you're more suited to "fix" Noxus. Do not hide behind letters or indirect and cowardly actions like those of your Grand General. Speak your insults and curses to my face, and test my determination for yourself. Win or lose, it matters not. Make it a public spectacle in Noxus if you desire. I'll fight before a crowd to prove my worth. You say I've done nothing? Then consider it a first step in showing you, showing the Noxus that I still love, the power of true strength. I've battled the Radiant Dawn and survived against all of her unleashed power. I've clashed with the brute strength of Prince Jarvan Lightshield and withstood the power of his mightiest attacks to look upon a foe as battered as myself, a foe that even your Grand General was unable to defeat.
So, General, if you doubt me, I challenge you to see what I have become in my absence. While my way may have once been, my spirit is not lost, nor will it ever be again. The time for talk is over, General. See for yourself my conviction, and my strength, and I will show you the determination and might of my pure Noxian vision. I await your reply.