|Rules and Guidelines|
|20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 of 48|
|Vasa, 92 - Sunrise, hr 4|
She stood at the clearing of Moonglade at the lake. Looking around. It was night and normally that would mean the eyes of the Night Watchers would be shining out of the darkness. They were not, she only spotted one pair of eyes and it quickly vanished as if in fear.
She slowly walked towards the old wooden house huddled next to the cliffs on the lakeside, near the path which lead up to the Shrine of the Returned.
As she stepped closer she stopped as a door opened and she saw candle light on the figure of Sichar. She had not seen him since she found him praying fervently at the Shrine years ago after the incident with the Otherkin, Luca.
He held a longbow up, an arrow nocked. He then lowered it and returned the arrow to the quiver when he realized who it was. She stepped forward and silently embraced him. She was about to speak, but a look in his eyes silenced her. It was not a bad look, but a look which destroyed the need for words.
She entered into the old wooden building built so many years ago. It had not changed much, the old scarred table where they had once eaten many meals was still there, containers tucked into the corner. She then saw a rough bed on the floor, stained with spots of blood.
With a worried look she looked over to Sichar and then in the dim light of the candle on the table she saw the staining of dried blood and bandages over his body. Instinctively she went to fret over him, but he stopped her silently. His glance filtered out to the outside. To the boughs and the forest surrounding Moonglade. And then she knew what he meant. Sichar had been silently killing the Night Watchers in Moonglade, and he had already killed most of them it appeared.
Snowe let out a choked noise as a tear slid down her cheek. It was time for her people to come home.
|Vasa, 92 - Sunrise, hr 5|
I went about my days as if I had been asleep. Many of my children were born without souls. I only had Radek left now. I tried my best to be a good mou-mou to him. I cared for him and in time I made him his own armour. I felt like I was dead inside. I had no hopes of future happiness. I waited to hear from the Great Mountain Spirit. I think I had failed. I had been told to make children, yet they were all lifeless save this one, strange creature, so cold and distant...
I loved him as well as I could now. He was the only thing I had left. The only one, it seemed, that was capable of loving me in return. I nurtured him, held him close, I was always worried when he left my sight.
So many foreigners now called out mountain their home, or at least a temporary shelter. I was almost oblivious to their presence. When I first taught Radek to hunt he killed many small lizards. A young bat-girl came to me, demanding that he apologize for killing "her" lizards. I was confused, but her kin seemed bent on making us apologize. I explained to her that it was not our way to "own" the creatures of the mountain, and that our young hunted freely in order to become strong warriors. They did not budge, instead insisting that in our home we must make accomodation for them. Had I more strength I might have been angrier, but time was draining my very life from me.
Then one day Radek took things too far. He killed a Hobb with such violence and savagery as to draw the attention of all around us. I was embarrassed. I pulled him aside to speak with him, I tried to teach him that it was wrong. He didn't seem to listen to me. He seemed hardened. I drew back to work, hoping that by withdrawing my presence I would cause the boy to reflect on his actions.
I fell asleep at a short distance from the camp. I will regret this until the day I finally leave this world for the Halls of the Mountain Spirit.
Radek began to fight with one of the strangers. He insulted them and showed no remorse for his earlier violence. He prehaps threatned them and my sister Vallo. I do not understand how threats from such a young child could have warranted the violence from my sister. She had been acting strange ever since my return. She had been malicious to me, but I had never feared violence from her.
Another mistake, that I will take with me to the Halls.
She slew my son in cold blood. I awoke at the screaming and saw his limp body on the ground. She picked it up and brought it to me. She layed his body at my feet. My own sister. I looked at her for a while, fear, anger, saddness, and an unspeakable rage all welled up inside me. The world seemed to spin around me. Could this really have happened?
She told me that she had done it to protect our guests. Our guests. She had slain my son for the sake of our guests. I screamed, cried and balled my fists, but after these words I was strangly calm. I drew my sword with a steady hand and brought it down on my sister's neck.
We fought long and hard. I did not care if I died, and my unbridled rage fueled my hated gift. The ground of the mountain shook as I had never felt it shake before. I cried out and the ground surged up beneath me, flinging stone and mud and everything else from the inside of the mountain at my sister. Her limbs were battered and broken but I continued my assult relentlessly. The very mountain came to my aid and crushed her.
I vaguely remember screaming: a gutteral and feral noise, fit for one who is no longer worthy to be distingushed from the beasts. I vaguely remember launching myself down the face of the mountain, throwing myself into oblivion.
|Vasa, 92 - Sunrise, hr 5|
She suffered from her parent's wanderlust - she knew that. The difference being she wanted to bring things back to the family - new things, exciting things, things that would help them.
It was to be her first journey away from home. They had visited the trees just down the mountain, she and her Sul-Rani. They were tall, amazing beings full of life and comfort, offering shade in the immense heat. She wished she could find a small one to take back to her Sul-Kavo - that would make him happy. He missed the trees so much - talked about them all the time. These were very big though, and too heavy for her to carry back up the mountain in one piece.
They were there to gather the wood from these hulking beings, with the utmost gratitude. They needed the wood for coffins...so the sleeping could rest.
It was there they met another Stoneshaper, Hexio, and his traveling companion, a Salome as she'd come to understand it. He was much different than the previous pair of Stoneshapers that visited her home. His skin did not shine in the sun. The woman reminded her of the marble statues back home - flawless as if purposely carved to be that way. Nervous at first, her fascination got the best of her. She and the Salome had talked briefly before the two continued their own journey, the Salome vanishing into thin air like the light of a firefly.
She would have stayed longer, gathering more food, flowers, gifts for the family. But there was a creature drawing closer to them, one unlike any she'd ever seen...grotesque, fearsome, and none to happy they were there. It was just as well; however - it had been days into their journey, and she missed the comfort of the others.
She would visit the trees again - she promised. For now, she had much to write about.
|Ringwe, 92 - Afternoon, hr 8|
There are Night Watchers here too! This place seemed ideal for us, and then they showed up. Why won't they leave us alone?
I killed that one with wings that was following me. They should have taken that as a sign and left me alone! These wolf ones are stronger, though, and I guess they know it.
And why are there so many of them? Mother said they were the cursed spirits of Moonkin who died and weren't Returned, but I've seen more Night Watchers than dead Moonkin.
Unless everybody is dead. No, it can't be! I need to go back and make sure.
Now, which way goes back to Skyreach? I don't remember. Well, if I just head back to the edge of the world and follow it around, I'll get there at some point.
I hope I'm not too late!
|Khelek, 93 - Sunrise, hr 5|
The emotion was indescribable...
Burning...hotter than the oven...it made places in her heart hurt.
The emotion...she didn't understand. She'd never felt this before; and, certainly not due to any one person.
But, now she did...and it scared and confused her.
Kavo had returned with Tobar in tow.
Her mind told her she was supposed to be happy; but, she wasn't...not even remotely. It was nice to see her brother safe, but equally she wished she'd never seen him again. Either of them.
"You left..." she thought. "You and my sister. You didn't even say goodbye...and him..." She would look on her quiet sister often, wishing things to be different, wishing she knew the answer. "Why doesn't he like us? What did we do wrong?"
It made her hurt. It made her want to find something to do to not think about them. Maybe things would be different if they stayed; but, she knew they wouldn't...
And she was right.
And she wanted them to leave and never return.
"You left us..."
She wanted to forget them. It made her sad every day she could no longer remember the names of her own Rani; and, seeing the two of them again made it worse. "I can remember your calling...did they even care? I don't even know their names!"
It made her angry...bitter...
She knew to hide it. It would do nothing good to show her true feelings to them, especially now with the sudden illness of Sul-Rani Neasa. The rest of the family needed to be strong, to hope she would wake and eat. She needed to be part of that strength.
"Do you even care, Kavo? ...do you even notice she's dying?"
Daggers for eyes was all she held for her father...and a simple gift for her guilty-looking brother, always with his averted eyes and lowered head...a gift to remind him of home. She missed him...
But the past still remained in her mind, replaying every day those moments.
"You left us...you didn't even say goodbye...not even an idea as to what happened...where you were going...I..."
That was the word she had to hide...to keep to herself as much as she could. That was the emotion...
|Losse, 93 - Sunrise, hr 5|
I slid down the mountain side, only half conscious of my movements. I was becoming aware that I was more injured than I had realized when I fled. I stumbled on some loose rocks and fell the rest of the way, landing squarely on my back. Luckily the fall hadn't been so bad, but the pain from the wounds seemed like it would almost paralyze me. I winced, screwing my eyes shut as hot blood poured from my forehead down my face. I tried to wipe it away with a free hand. When I opened my eyes again I looked down at my chest. Just barely within my vision I could make out the ends of the crossbow bolt shafts, sticking from the places between my armour. Two of them. I reached gently to try and touch one, the mere ginger touch sent waves of pain through my body and I pulled my hand back quickly. I lay on my back, looking up at the sky for a moment, trying to steady my breathing before trying again. I did it quickly, I grabbed onto the bolt and pulled. The pain forced a scream from my lips but the bolt wouldn't come out. I didn't have the strength...I couldn't go on.
Tears mixed with the blood on my face and I wept quietly for some time. Even this seemed to draw all the strength I had and sent sharp messages of pain through my body. I lay there for a while, unsure of how to preceed. Shouldn't I be dead? Would the Great Spirit come to me and take me to the Halls? How long did I have to wait?
After some time I opened my eyes again and stared up at the stary sky. It was cold, and I couldn't wait any longer. It didn't seem like I was going to die yet, so I had to keep going. With great effort I pulled myself back to my feet, the throbbing of my wounds were a constant reminder.
I was at the bottom of a small crag. The only way to go was up. So I began to scale the rocky mountain face. Thankfully I was at home in the mountains, my body seemed to complete the actions without my conscious aid. I was unsure of where I was, what excatly had happened. I pulled myself up over the ridge and stopped to breath.
When I had finally regained my composure I looked up and noticed the figures staring at me with curiosity. No...no...they weren't supposed to be so close! How had I stumbled upon them? I fumbled for my sword and held it out with a shaky hand.
"Stay back..." I murmured, my voice hoarse. How could I have been so stupid? Was this part of the Great Spirit's plan? It would not let me have an honourable death, but rather sent me to be killed amongst the strangers. I felt ill, and could not hold my sword up. I dropped it to my side and fell to my knees in a swoon. It was out of y hands: my life was not my own. If they wished to kill me, I could do nothing to stop them.
I felt feverish, and was barely aware of a woman's voice speaking to me. There were others, but hers seemed to be comforting. She bathed my forehead and some kind of salve was applied to my wounds. I looked up into her face. She asked me my name. How could she forget me? Trisa was always so kind, she had saved my life so many times before...how could she forget my name? I shouldn't have been so eager to attack the creatures in the mines...I was lucky to...
It wasn't Trisa. I started and the shock lead to a fit of coughing. No, I was amongst the strangers. Fear finally gripped me. I didn't want to die anymore.
I refused to tell them my name. I do not know what I had told them in my half-mad state. I needed to get away from here...quickly. The woman beckoned me into her home in order to heal my wounds. She was so kind...I could not help but trust her, I was so weary. I followed her into the shack and she aided me in taking off my armour, promising me she would help to remove the bolts. All I had to do for now was rest. Against my better judgement, sleep fell over me.
I slept silently for a time, my body glad to finally have some rest. After a time my dreams were plagued by visions of my son: his broken body lay at my feet. He looked up at me, questioning with his one wide eye looking up at me emptying. "Why did you let this happen?"
I started for a moment, awakening in a cold sweat. I winced but could feel some of the strength returning to my body. I should flee, I shouldn't stay here. I heard a sound and stopped breathing, my ears straining to hear more of the noise. Someone was in here. I stood stark still.
"What did you say your name was?" Came a voice from somewhere nearby in the darkness. I froze, my muscles tensed. What had I told that woman?
The body hurled itself at me as soon as the words escaped its mouth. I quickly moved out of the way and grabbed for my sword. My actions were quick and instinctive, I was only half-aware of my movements as I brought the sword down hard on the boy's neck. He fell to the ground, the last sounds escaping his throat before he slumped over and was silent. I stared at him wide-eyed. The boy from outside...I vaguely recognized him...I'd never known his name. Why would he attack me? What had happened?
I tried to slow my breathing and looked down at my chest. The scuffle had reopened the wounds. I looked down at him, wide-eyed and confused again. Why? Why?
Another sound and I looked up. The door was open again and another youth came into the house. He looked at me, shocked, as I stood over his slain brother, my sword still in my hands.
"Why did you kill him?" He screamed. I tried form words, but nothing would come. I looked at him, a helpless expression of confusion on my face. But rage had taken him over and he too lunged at me. I tried to fend him off, more aware of myself as I parried his blows, trying my best not to injure the youth. He eventually backed off, breathing hard. He looked at me with a furious expression but quickly fled through the door.
I fell to my knees. Why? Why was I so cursed? Did the Great Spirit laugh now? To see me so drenched in blood? I had no time to think. The woman came back in, the pain obvious on her face.
"You should leave...quickly..." She murmured as she gathered up the corpse of her kin. I looked at her, hopelessly imploring some recognition that I did not mean for this to happen. She left and I gathered up my things hastily and left the house. I ran quickly to the edge of the town, trying to avoid the eyes of the strangers. Something nagged at me and I paused a moment, seeking out the woman who had helped me.
"I'm sorry!" I called out, tears streaming down my face. "Thank you...for all your help...I'm so sorry..." It wasn't enough, but it was all I could say. Without waiting for her response, I tore off down the mountain side again, the eerie sense of repetition was not lost on me.
|Kuile, 93 - Evening, hr 12|
The tiny Nolheni lay there, perfectly still in her mothers arms. Her eyes wandering, she feels loved and curious. A tall man stands next to her mother and right away she knows he is her father. The couple are about fortyfive and she feels like she belongs. The tiny house is crowded and she loves all the attention.
Her mother cradels her, showing the newborn her new family. She doesn't seem intrested, but she seems to like her mothers scarf more. The woman laughs.
Amaera is home.
|Kuile, 93 - Evening, hr 12|
I watch in awe
At all the figures,
Thumping, bumbing, rumbling.
The rock rock rock
In their arms
Holding me, holding holding.
So warm warm wam.
And welcoming their arms are.
And kisses kisses kisses
Soft on my cheeks.
|Kuile, 93 - Evening, hr 12|
Light shines in
Gleaming in my newborn eyes.
Bright bright bright
They are, shining in the jungle
Past the leaves where dewdrops fall
Onto my forehead.
But not until later on
When I find myself outside.
The heat turns
Churning, melting heat.
Boiling boiling boiling.
Who knew the jungle was so hot?
People meet, people greet,
The ones with white and silver-blue hair
Like mine that are now just patches
That will be long as years go by.
The scarf hangs from my mother's head
Like a turban or a thick thread
And I wish to have one
Just the same
So I may be beautiful as she is
Shining like my newborn eyes.
|Lote, 93 - Sunrise, hr 4|
Her father presents her with a tiny doll, shaped like a Noljeni with no face. She loves it, but what she really wants are clothes. I little tailor-to-be!
|Lote, 93 - Sunrise, hr 4|
Dolly in his hands
Working wroking working,
He strings each blade of soft green
Sewing sewing sewing.
The cuddly is a female,
So beaustiful in the light.
She walks walks walks
And I help her.
Wobbling wobbling wobbling.
She helps me, too
Tumbling tumbling tumbling.
Etak and I.
|Elen, 93 - Midday, hr 6|
The fish was still alive as he pulled his knife across it's back and cut it in half. For once, he appreciated the blood.
He chewed at the entrails of the small thing hungrily. Where had all his food gone? Oh, right.
Over and over, she pounded through his mind.
Bembul. Bembul. Bembul.
He screamed angrily. This damned fish was not enough. He had to kill more. And that he did. But each falling animal just made him angrier. Why did this have to happen? Where had his life gone? How old was he? Twenty?
I hate you. I hate you.
His stomach twisted at the word. Hate. He wanted to hate her, he really did. He couldn't be satisfied any other way.
More tears. He cried his sisters name. And again, and again. But she refused to wake up. She refused to sit up and smile and say, "Yes, Bomrek?" She just sat there, cold and turning hard. She made him go through it alone. Just like his Father, the liar.
An answer he would never learn. Why did Bembul refuse to wake to her name? Was she tired of the journey?
We'd be home already if it wasn't for you. You had to stop too much. I hate you so much.
A lie, once again.
I hate you. I never want to see you again!
"Hate." The word tasted bitter to his mouth. "Bembul." The name brought him a warm feeling, though it was turning cold as quickly as her delicate hands are. "I hate Bembul." A sudden mix of emotion flowed to his head. He began to feel dizzy.
I'm taking you home, where no one will see your face again. And then I'm going back to the others, if they'll have me.
|Gurtha, 93 - Before dawn, hr 3|
It was so warm there, in my coccoon! The leaf that wiped the stickiness from my face was old and smelled.
I want to return to my moist cavern where I did not hunger for anything, warmth, food, or otherwise.
|Gurtha, 93 - Before dawn, hr 3|
These warm hugs and kisses
Are no match for the blanket
Tight blanket they wrap around my shoulders.
Sleepy sleepy sleepy.
They lift me up,
And put me down
In a pile of soft green
Like the dolly, Etak
They set beside me.
And sleep calls me,
Tempting not to shut my eyes
As newborns do
When they are
Sleepy sleepy sleepy.
|Gurtha, 93 - Sunrise, hr 4|
The vivid red that covered the fingertips soon was painted onto my face.
|Lasse, 93 - Midday, hr 7|
The first thing I heard was my mother's words, warm and melodic, like song; it made my entrance into this world less harsh and comforted me.
|Losse, 94 - Evening, hr 12|
Sometimes, Hiss and Meemoo make lots of loud noises and sleep on one another. Sometimes they sound like they are dying, like the noises the moose make when Hiss kill them.
|Kuile, 94 - Sunrise, hr 5|
The boy picked his way along the mountain ridges, every so often gliding down from one small outcropping to another. He was scared, he had no idea where he was going. Kavo had left him again, except this time there was no Anisa to help him find the way, to hold his hand. He looked down to the stick in his basket, sighing softly.
He had expected her to be mad, he had expected all of them to be mad when he returned. Anisa was always upset with him, why should they be any different? He was always doing something wrong, but it wasn't like he tried. He knew he shouldn't have left to follow Kavo, but it was what he wanted then. Had he known what the man was like, that all he wanted from his children was little workers, maybe he wouldn't have.
No, that was a lie. Because he'd returned to the mountain home, he'd asked for help learning to fly, and Kavo had come after him. He felt loved that the man had followed, and would learn to fly with him. But then another morning broke, and he woke to see him gone, a small speck in the distance. And though it took him long to decide, and though his heart hurt from having to decide at all, the boy still followed after. He still left to follow his Kavo.
He was even just stupid enough to believe that maybe the man would be waiting for him at the next mountain ledge, but he wasn't. There, was a white hot heat of anger so intense it could have broken him, had he not been him. They were there, Cesia and Narin. They weren't mad at him, they were happy, and smiling, and holding hands and...
He jumped from another ledge, letting the wind gusts move him from side to side, listening to the sounds it made as it whipped against his wings, and past his body. He didn't care if he never saw his Kavo again, but he needed to see Anisa. Maybe if he showed her how he'd learned to fly, maybe she wouldn't be so upset with him for leaving. She said she would never leave him, and here he'd gone and done to her what Kavo had done to him twice over. He would change, he would grow to be nothing like Kavo, he swore to himself.
He saw the figure moving the minute his feet touched solid ground, and he sucked in a cold breath of air. The chances of it being Kavo were low now, but maybe it was someone who could help him find his Anisa.
|Rosa, 94 - Evening, hr 12|
Three more that look just like me! Three. Maybe they will be fun. The others are dull and quiet.
At least I was the first. I am her eldest and she calls me clever. She smiles at me sometimes and it makes me happy.
|Lote, 94 - Before dawn, hr 2|
Margalit sighed softly as she buried little Gabija. It had been many years since they had left Krai's Pointe. Lorel had slain the old Witch, Lilith, there. Teo had come with them, and Lazlo too. Her brother, Etzem, came as well, always silent and diligent. They had carved out a chunk of the harsh island of Farcliffs for themselves. Getting past her initial fears, she had laid with Teo and they had a few hatchlings: Saga, Hakon, Niall, Agni, Koli, Gied, and Gabija. However, Farcliffs was still silent. Besides Lorel and Teo, few others did much of anything. The vision that the Grea Fish had sent her so many years past seemed more and more distanct by the passing years.
|20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 of 48|