|Rules and Guidelines|
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|Elen, 116 - Before dawn, hr 2|
I was working on a little skirt as I waited for my sister and brother to return home when I first heard the voice. I didn't think much of it at first. Perhaps it was papa mumbling in his sleep. But papa never woke up these days let alone speak. My hand stilled over the piece of hide and the fur on the back of my neck rose. My ears flicked around, straining to catch the raspy whisper again. What was the voice saying? Shaking my head, I returned to the skirt, snorting at my foolishness. Voices, indeed. I was fine. What happened at the deadfall was behind me. Except I heard it again.
The voice was right next to me, behind me, in front of me, above me, in me. It was raspy and rough. It was foreign but it was familiar. The voice belonged to the monsters that liked to torment me but it belonged to my dead sister. Setna. My eyes darted to her grave, the newest to join the many. Small clouds formed at my every heavy breath. There was silence for a while. And then I heard what the voice was saying.
Lyali. Lyaaalii. Come closer. Please. Lyali...
A low growl formed in my throat, the skirt lying forgotten in the snow. I wondered where mama was, why did she have to be gone right now. I glanced towards papa. Asleep; no help. I glanced towards to south; my siblings were nowhere to be seen. I glanced towards the city; my brother would help me, he always helps me. Stumbling to my feet, I started to make my way inside but the voice rang again, rising in tone, becoming more desperate.
Lyali! Wait! Won't you come closer? Won't you listen to me?
I hesitated. I shouldn't have. I wanted to hear what 'Setna' had to say. At the same time, I wanted to run to the safety of the city and my brother. But I stayed and turned around, ears flat against my head. I went closer and I listened.
Good Lyaaliii. You do not have to fight me. I am you. I know you. I know everything.
I shook my head, whether in disbelief or to shake the voice out, I don't know. Maybe both. What did this person... thing, know?
Do not believe me Lyali? Let me tell you some things... perhaps then you will. Your mama? Do not look for her. She is not here, but she will come. And your siblings? They too will come. Both soon. Watch Lyali. You'll see. Then, you will listen to me. You will want to stay with me. Only me.
How did they know this?! I shook as the voice became more rough and assertive and covered my ears before running into the city. I told my brother as we built the first house of the city. He comforted me like I knew he would. Told me there was nothing wrong with me. I knew he would take care of me. But I also knew his patience would be wearing thin. How many times would he want to comfort his crazy sister? In the back of my mind, a seed of doubt grew.
Some months later, I walked out of the city and they were back. Brother and sister, home safe and now sleeping. I stood over them and stared, my head tilted, my mind blank. I looked to the newest grave and moved towards it, crouching as my hand trailed across the name. I smile, a strange smile, and whisper as parts of my vision become darker.
They're back Setna. You were right. I should have listened to you.
My sister confronted me about my whispered words. She had heard. I pretended to have forgotten, to have not remembered. I pretended to be worried and sad that bad things were happening to me again. I changed the subject.
Some months after that, mama was home. I look towards the grave again. She was right again. A small laugh rumbled in my throat and my vision darkened again as my gaze landed on her claymore. Blinking, I rose to greet my mother but I didn't embrace her. I was glad she was home. Wasn't I?
I stayed outside now, to be closer to Setna. I became quieter and I watched everything more carefully. One day my sister walked outside the city and I noticed her roundness. I vaguely remembered mama's roundness from my younger days. Pups. My eyes narrowed, my ears flattened, an inaudible snarl formed at the back of my throat. I wanted to hurt her. And those pups. But why? I wanted pups. But only to do my duty. I don't need them now. I have Setna. I glanced at the grave and immediately relaxed.
We will hurt them all later Lyali, like they hurt you. Your siblings will be busy with those filthy pups. Your papa, he is almost mine. Your mama, you do not know her anymore. And your brother. He promised to help you did he not? He doesn't even talk to you anymore. You do not need them Lyali... you need only me. Only me.
I nodded to myself and brushed past everyone into the city. I walked into the shrine and sat against the wall, my vision completely dark, my mind completely blank as I stared at nothing.
For now, my spirit was tainted. For now, my irises were black instead of grey. For now, I would stay with and listen to Setna. Only Setna.
|Elen, 116 - Sunrise, hr 4|
Deep in the filth, and decay of the swamps it was deathly silent as something stirred as it pulled itself from a thick pool of muck.As the muck dripped from its face it revealed a pair of black sorrowful eyes, and black slick skin. A nearby firefly drew closer to the strange creature quickly darting around it's head, almost like it was studying it. However the firefly soon met it's end, as a quick motion from the creature's crude hand split it's shell splattering the insect against a nearby tree. Picking up what remained of the insect setting it aside, it's crude hands plunged into the muck of the swamp, into the embrace of the only home it ever knew.
|Elen, 116 - Sunrise, hr 4|
Deep inside a hot, and humid swamp, something was stirring, as if awoken from a deep sleep. With a sicking sound, a pair of black arms shot out of the muck, slowly pulling the creature out. Finding some solid ground, the creature began to scrape the muck from its body, reveling plastic like skin. Its hands slowly made their way up to its face, scraping the last of the muck away. With a quick glance to the south, it saw someone coming and the creature quickly hid, awaiting the traveler's arrival.
|Elen, 116 - Evening, hr 10|
His return to Descension Point was bitter indeed. Sylphia, his Sylphia, had disobeyed his wishes in following him. The thought, though almost calming, made him feel ill. Why wasn't she able to leave well enough alone? He wanted to go, to see other places for Bhall instead of being chained to Maern at his home. He was the only follower of Bhall who had to listen to Maern chastise him, who had to watch and protect the handmaidens because Maern desired it to be so.
A sigh escaped him. Things were going to be unpleasant, but he promised to stay. He had to wait until Myabelle was named, and that would be several freezes. The thought chilled him. Several freezes of watching Lohkar and Kaewyn have little ones when he so desired to be her Reaver. Several freezes of listening to the teasing at the hands of his younger sibling because he wasn't a true follower of Bhall.
That may be, but I'm a better follower of Bhall. I have respect for everyone.
The gouge on his leg began to act up as he thought of things and he grunted, sitting on the bedding in the center of his home to watch the blood seep into the buckskin. Silly, silly boar. Just like Bhall. Impulsive.
|Vasa, 116 - Afternoon, hr 8|
|Losse, 117 - Afternoon, hr 8|
|Kuile, 117 - Sunrise, hr 4|
His first kill, Eamus, bent over panting then straightened up and started stripping the deer down, like he had seen kontar do before, feeling extremely proud with himself. His chipmunk on the other hand was not impressed, it leapt down from the tree it had been hidding in and chittered at him angrily, then ran off, while Eamus headed inside to cook the meat before it went bad in the heat of the new day.
|Vasa, 117 - Before dawn, hr 2|
And then, many things happened.
Pack? What to pack?
Not to carry too many things.
Food, feel-good cream, maybe something as gift?
Finally packed. Ready.
All waiting for was to hear if the two silent visitors had spoken yet, if they were friendly and could be trusted to be left with the defenceless little ones.
And she wanted to ask her mother something.
Kartakh promised to speak with the sleepers. Speak with the one that was seen moving around the camp, hunting, both outside and in the Belly. Yet not speaking. Not doing things with the family.
And then the kutari attacked the Ice Dragon. The beast that had always been on mountain. The beast as white and pure as the snow on the top of mount Kutar.
Kartakh went to have words with her.
She would never know what was said, but that day she was awoken by screams. Screams she later learned was given from the hunting kutari as she fled to the mines. Screams that she would come back and hurt, no, kill her mate. Simply since he wanted her to speak to them. To abide their rules at their home.
Was the bad spirit of the desert truly so strong? Was it in this kutari as well?
Was it really wrong to expect visitors, those wanting to live at the mountain, to respect the wishes of those who lived there already?
With her mind troubled by these thoughts she went over to the granite house, her mind set on seeking the wisdom of her mother.
Where be Khatraas? Salira no see mahmah Khatraas for long time.
Thought in house but house empty?
Standing in the camp she looked around, her gaze seeking that of her sisters and brothers.
Moving over to the new visitors, those who had recently arrived from the desert.
No-one could answer, none had seen the woman who was the mother of so many of them.
A day later, Maka returns from the mine, her face filled with grief.
Maka find in place where tunnel go round and round..
The woman gently put the dead body of Khatraas on the ground before turning towards Vaastra, handing her the belongings she had found with the body.
-If those were the exact words or not, she would never be able to remember, but that was how she ended up recalling them. That morning suddenly felt very cold, as she learned that her mother, the mother of her so very young siblings, were not longer with them.
She, Kartakh and Vaastra took the body down to the Kutari Hall of Dead.
It was there Kartakh showed her the scroll. The scroll of Those passed, and asked her to write something in it.
It was hard. What could she say? What could she truly say about the woman that had given her life-blood?
She had always been busy, keeping herself busy. First to keep her mind off the past. Later to care for their future. So what stories could she truly tell about her mother? She did not even know how many older siblings she had, or what their names could be.
So she wrote, painstakingly, a few lines. Feeling empty as the scroll got further filled.
And then they left, returning outside. To the light.
Yet, she had to tell her siblings about the news..
First thing she did was walk into the sandstone house and try to rouse her brother. Whispering the sad news to him, forcing herself to speak it, while yet not being certain if he would hear or not.
Next was to tell the little ones. They knew already, but her mother had slept so often lately, did they even realize what it meant??
She had talked with the others, saying that she wanted to teach the little ones about Kutar. About their ways. But not know how too. Maybe trying to explain that difficult would make other difficult come easier to say?
She did not know.
But it looked like the trip would have to wait.
|Vasa, 117 - Sunrise, hr 4|
Mama has taken us outside today. It is wonderful this place, and very scary, because there is enough space to travel far enough to never see mama again! There are many creatures. I knew only of the little creatures that run with wings and like blueberries, and the black ones with wings who make sounds in the night, but here there are many more. There are some who carry the fur that mama has made clothes with, and others who look like what I have eaten.
|Vasa, 117 - Sunrise, hr 5|
Is is strange to not remember from where you came? For as long as I can remember I found this unanswerable question burning with a powerful desire to be answered. I only have vague memories left of my former family, but even those have begun to fade. All I can remember now, is that I was running away in the wilderness, for reasons I can't recall.
|Vasa, 117 - Evening, hr 10|
Ha! Stupid Goblin, why didn't you just keep on hiding? When you let me see you, you were dead.
But what's this? A little carcass, not much more than bones...
Tiny bones. And a diaper.
The Goblin ate a baby! Which one? I saw Snowe and Cerendil as I was heading towards this Goblin, and Sichar is dreaming right over there.
This thing ate Rown's baby! There's nothing left but bones, so it can't even be Returned!
I have to tell them. They didn't believe we were in any danger, but this proves it. Even I wasn't worried enough. I only thought Otherkin would come kill us, not Goblins.
And if mother was right, then little Sirin will become a Night Watcher now. So that's yet another threat to the safety of Safehill.
But now maybe they will help me with the kiln and armor. They need to, or else all of the babies will be killed by monsters, and we'll all be haunted by Night Watchers. Rown and Rena must understand that this is our only option if we want to be safe.
|Vasa, 117 - Evening, hr 12|
She was so happy. Smiles everywhere, especially when she spoke to Mina. She was being bombarded with questions, such as "How many y'gonna have?" and "What'll you call'em?" Laughter rose from her throat, and she answered them all. I am so happy... She thought. But the laughter and smiles were broken by a sudden rush of pain; a gasp left her lips, and she moved an arm to her protruding belly... she hears footsteps rushing over, a voice telling her to get to a bed. Nodding, she shuffles along with Marcas toward the house, giving one last smile to Mina before going through the door.
The pain kept coming, ripping at her abdomen. She tried to talk, to keep a calm composure in front of the children surrounding her bed, but the contractions kept coming, causing her to gasp and clench the bedsheets with white knuckles. So much pain... Her thoughts were interrupted by comforting words, comforting strokes of her hair... "I'm so proud of you, Ruby." she could hear her Di say, and she could feel Marcas' hand in hers. Another gasp of pain, and she couldn't hear anything, it was all too much, but it all disappeared... suddenly she was calm, almost like floating, a warm feeling in her stomach, but it disappeared, and the pain was back again sooner than she could relax. It kept coming, and she felt like screaming, but she couldn't. No, she wouldn't scream.
It was worse than ever before, and she gripped Marcas' hand in hers, a loud groan finally forcing its way out of her mouth as her face turned red. It felt like her whole body was splitting open, and there was nothing, nothing... A moment of warmth and relaxation attempted to penetrate the pain, but it was not strong enough, and the pain kept getting stronger, and she couldn't go on any longer...
... and it was over.
Everything came back, she saw Marcas' smile above her, her Di next to her, the feeling of his hand on her shoulder... the shocked expressions of her little sisters near the bed. She looked at them before her eyes closed, and a slow smile crept onto her lips. "She's beautiful, dear."
Of course she is beautiful, she is my little baby...
Danika Silvyn. Vasa, 117.
|Ringwe, 117 - Midnight, hr 1|
It was big!
No, it was huge!!
Never had she seen any being that large, aside the revered Ice Dragon.
And it spoke!!
Vaguely she recalled a kutari tell about a beast that was not Colourwing and not kutari, yet not biter or grazer.
Was this it?
Was it to be trusted?
She simply could not stop stealing glances at it, being used to not find many beings, be it critter or kutari, taller then herself.
|Ringwe, 117 - Midnight, hr 1|
Honey is sweet. It is sweet like berries, but much more, and it is sticky. It is golden and the most wonderful thing I have ever had.
|Khelek, 118 - Sunrise, hr 5|
Selections from a Journal
I have time to write again. There has been little to discuss since my last entry merely because I have yet to find anything of interest.
However, this has changed.
I came across a young woman called Callie. She is very kind, but she is also quite sad. I can see it in her - the hint of red that edges her lashes, the slump to her shoulders and slowness to her gait.
This, however, is not without reason. It is due to love...love for another who may or may not share those feelings. And you know me...the unknown is a frightening thing. Though ignorance is bliss, bliss is not always without consequences. Dire, painful consequences that eat away at the soul.
As such, I have traveled with her to the last location of her heart's song to see about tending to those unanswered questions. Two years is a long time to be away from those you love...
...though perhaps only a fraction of a second in comparison. My plight, however, has purpose.
Though I have yet to meet the individual of Callie's affection, I did get to observe the third piece of the puzzle. Callie called her Calliste before we set to travel to this beach. They were all to live happily here on the shore, though things did not go as planned, I am to understand. The details are lacking.
She - Calliste - is certainly a piece of work. I have seen her kind once before, and know they are few...and such a disappointment is she. Perhaps not to herself, perhaps not to others, but I feel her kind-hearted mother would be devastated to know what a hateful, callous creature her daughter became...
I remember meeting her mother as a little girl back home. She delivered messages between the cities, brought us news of Magrathea, other smaller camps. I looked forward to her appearances, though perhaps that was my childish fascination with the way she blinked in and out of existence in a flash.
So different they seem.
My attention now must be to Callie. To have those you care for turn their backs on you, lash out at you, cuts deeper than any knife or sword could ever. Sekah bless her shattered heart. I am hopeful she will find this other individual soon...something said makes me believe he still thinks of her.
Perhaps her answers lie in Magrathea. I admit...it make me nervous to consider traveling there. The childhood stories, how we were hated by the Joshua...yet, I feel no fear. Only curiosity of the unknown. I shall follow where Callie leads, however. My presence merely support, but I hope to ease her pains somehow.
She watches over me. Always. With Her above, I will never be alone in the dark. I wish that on all who I meet in this world.
|Khelek, 118 - Afternoon, hr 9|
Zos told me something interesting today. I do wish at times I could speak like the rest of them, it almost makes me feel a bit left out, being unable to speak. She told me that, despite the fact I can't speak... That it isn't a bad thing. She told me she knows I'll find a way to be understood. Being different wasn't something I should be ashamed of, not that I actually felt shame once in my life. Though it is still a bit frustrating when I can't say what I want to say...
|Lote, 118 - Before dawn, hr 2|
|Urnu, 118 - Sunrise, hr 4|
|Naur, 118 - Sunrise, hr 4|
|Elen, 118 - Sunrise, hr 5|
And so, I fly.
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