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  1. Michael stared at the woman in the mirror. He supposed averaging four hours of sleep over the past two weeks wasn't ideal, but hallucinations seemed excessive. She seemed to blink when he did, mimicking his other movements perfectly. Even the number of teeth seemed to match as he ran his tongue over each one. When he reached for the long dark hair that flowed over her shoulders in the reflection and grabbed an unexpected handful of hair, he took in a slow, controlled breath. The reflection smiled, the corners of her eyes crinkling and drawing attention to the faint bags that formed beneath. He felt his lips part. “That’s enough for now.” The voice was feminine, static faint beneath the lilting sounds. “Rest your eyes, won’t you?” Michael went to sleep. === Something stank. Corben tried to roll over and go back to sleep, but was met with utmost resistance from his body. He groaned and took a mental step back, focusing his energy into opening his eyes. It was painful, like soap rubbed under his eyelids. His arms wouldn’t cooperate long enough to let him rub the pain out, so he squeezed his eyes shut, forcing out the pooled tears. They tumbled over his cheeks hotly and still his eyes burned. After a few orchestrated blinks, he managed to stabilise his vision long enough to examine his surroundings—or, at least, realise he was staring at the open predawn sky sandwiched between towering grey brick. The smell hadn’t left either. He tried to move again. It felt like he was lying on garbage bags, but he couldn’t get past how much his eyes hurt. Whether the bags were filled with pizza boxes or rotten fruit didn’t make much difference—he needed to get up. Corben grit his teeth and tried to launch his upper body forward. When his back seized with pain instead of lifting, he swore he could crack a tooth. He clumsily groped the bags beneath him, trying to force some feeling into his limbs long enough to figure out what he was lying on. What little he could feel through the plastic was immediately recognisable. Bottles. Broken bottles. Corben laughed.
  2. Tangential Notes: To keep myself from despairing too deeply over the editing and rewriting process of 39 [cries deeply], I'm going to be working on a rather self-indulgent story. When I was 13, I started working on my first large-scale story. I finished it at just under 45k--or, rather, I finished the first part of it at 45k. I have an outline that I had made with over 100 points and it is batshit insane (as one might expect from teenaged me)--there's time travel and at some point it calls for the characters to establish a secret base on Pluto. The whole thing is pretty inane--why Pluto? Why not any of the other planets? Why do I have a planet with 36 moons? We just don't know. (The answer, of course, is that I liked to start millions of projects too big for my intellect and attention span.) Why are they even time travelling? (This is never addressed in the outline, yet they travel to the past at least four different times.) Still, I felt bad I had this huge cast of characters left in limbo, and because they were my very first original characters, they have been in limbo for ages. Although I doubt I'll ever return to the original storyline to salvage it, I'll be treating it as mostly canon. Anyway, the title is lame and will probably change. I might do a sign-up type story later set in this universe, once I figure out how to make my aliens less lame. I like bandwagons. I wanna be cool too. === Chapter One [Part One] The bedroom was cosy, bordering on spartan with its limited personal touches. A glass vase with two sun-faded paper flowers attached to bits of wire. An errant comb, a few strands of hair woven into its teeth, next to a small stack of dogeared magazines long since out of date. Windows curtained and shut, the bright sunlight outside was barred entry. The walls were blank, a faded beige that might have been white at some point. Blank, save for the wall behind the bed. A mirror, wall to wall and floor to ceiling, reflected the room in its entirety. Its surface was clean and unbroken, not a single scratch or speck of dust to be found despite the headboard pushed directly against it, the sheets and comforter on the mattress in disarray. Felicia’s voice came through the closed door from the hallway, words dampened to murmurs. The door was pushed open, marked by a slight pop as it moved past the frame. She pressed her phone to her ear with her shoulder, a bowl of cereal in her hands. Shadows had formed beneath her eyes, her dark brown hair pulled back into a messy ponytail. She set the bowl on the nightstand and pushed the blankets aside. “No, I just got back from the lab. What’s up?” She sat down on the bed, perching her feet on the edge of the bed frame. “Tim.” She let out a breath. “Tim, stop. I don’t think she hates you. Your sister just turned, what, thirty? Thirty-one. She’s been in the spotlight since she was your age—that’s an entire decade in front of the camera, of her name being plastered everywhere in magazines. She’s not as young as she used to be.” Felicia switched the phone to her other ear and picked up the bowl. She popped a few spoonfuls of cereal into her mouth. The flakes were beginning to get soggy. “Much as I love to hear you suffer,” she said, putting the bowl down, “I don’t think that’s why you called me this early on a Sunday. Early for you, anyway. What’s going on?” There was a pause as she listened, a grin spreading across her face as she snickered. “Are you kidding me? Come on, isn’t Steve going? Aren’t you guys—” Another pause. The smile on her face immediately disappeared. “Oh. Oh. Shit, I’m sorry. I didn’t… I hope they work it out. Have you asked Amy to go with you? Not my sister, Le—Bev’s daughter. She’s in town for a few weeks, isn’t she?” Another pause. Felicia rubbed her forehead. “Figures she’d already have plans. All right, all right. I’ll go with you. It’s tomorrow night? Okay. I’ll see you at seven.” She hung up the phone and sighed, staring at the blank screen for a while. Her eyes flicked to her reflection in the mirror. She put a hand to the glass and, for a moment, she thought that it began to ripple beneath her fingers. Something in her stomach seized and excitement crept up on her. She closed her eyes. All she felt was its surface, solid as ever. She scolded herself silently for getting worked up and turned on her phone. The background was somewhat distorted, just a touch too wide for the phone’s resolution. It was a picture of her as a teenager, with a ridiculous head of multi-coloured streaks she absolutely insisted was vital to her personality. Leon was carrying her on his back, a goofy grin on his face. She frowned. Here she found herself, sitting on a bed that had seen more people than she would like to admit, a mostly full bowl of cereal waiting for her on the nightstand, staring at an old picture… And all she could think about was what she was going to wear tomorrow. A welcome distraction to be sure; it would be nice to be able to get away from the house. Felicia cast a sidelong glance at the mirror. Among other things. She couldn’t shake what had happened. The mirror moved—she was convinced of that much. She dropped the phone on the bed and stood up, taking the bowl. What more was there for her to do? Wait in front of the mirror for days like she used to? She was years away from sixteen—talking with Tim reminded her of that much. Of course, she was also years away from thirty. A small smile touched her lips. She left the room, closing the door behind her, pulling it roughly to get it to stay shut.
  3. The darkness is whispering. The woman dreaming spoke to herself, What are they saying... I can't understand... She slowly opened her green eyes and turning her head she felt the softness of a pillow. The room was dark and being unable to see she rolled onto her side realising the was on a soft bed. She groaned and the voices stopped momentarily before starting up once more. This is nothing but a dream. The woman kept telling herself as she sat up on the bed. Strange, I have never had a dream like this before. I wonder what will happen. A clocked figure stepped forward hand outstretched. The woman placed her hand in the person's and everything went black. “You really think she is the one?” someone close to the bed asked his voice low. “She is the one.” The man who offered his hand stated gently cradling her in his arms now. “I can smell it in her blood, she is the person we have waited for all these years. Princess Lilith has been found.” What a very strange dream. Lilith commented silently to herself as she fell into a deeper sleep. Lilith ran as fast as she could go, her heart pounding in her ears. If she did not make the train she would not make it to her job interview, reaching the platform she put on an extra burst of speed and managed to slip through the doors just before the closed. Grabbing the pole for support Lilith gasped for air, her lungs were burning as she tried to ignore the looks of the passengers in the cart. Regaining her breath she straightened and deftly tied her long black hair into a braid that hung down to her thighs. Glancing the the window Lilith quickly adjusted her plain white blouse and made sure her skirt was still sitting right. Once everything was in order she looked around the carriage once more, only a few people were paying attention to her now and making eye contact she smiled before heading to an empty seat. I don't need the money. She thought to her self as she looked out the window. I could live off my inheritance for the rest of my life if I wanted too, but I want to get out of the house. There is nothing to do there and having all the servants rushing over to me each time I stub my toe is getting extremely annoying. Oh look, the tunnel is coming up. Lilith enjoyed the tunnel every time she caught the train, the sudden chill and the total darkness to her were thrilling. Her parents never understood the feeling so while they were alive they had insisted Lilith take the town car. The only thing one really needs to be weary of is perverts who will try and grope you in the darkness. Lilith said to herself focusing on the glass of the window. The train driver never turned on the interior lights during the day, and a few times in the past she had to fight off an attacker. She was not the biggest breasted person in the carriage being only a B-cup, but in her glance around she was one of the youngest at twenty five. With a silent sigh she noticed four guys edging closer, three of the men looked like your average grab-a-woman-on-the-train-and feel-her-up type of people, but the forth was tall, much taller then her five foot two, and slender with short dark brown hair. The train entered the tunnel plunging everything into darkness then all hell broke lose, someone touched her lower back and standing she delivered a round house kick, before someone else grabbed her arm. With a sharp twist of her arm she broke free and Donkey kicked her attacker, she could hear muffled grunts and yelps of pain as she stood at the ready waiting for another attack. The train left the tunnel and Lilith found herself nose to nose with the forth man, startled to see him that close she punched him in the jaw sending him back into the seats behind him. “There was no call for that.” His velvet voice complained. “That is no way to treat someone who was helping.” “There was a call for it.” Lilith replied heatedly, “How would you feel if it was me sticking my face right in front of yours?” “I would be rather happy.” The man grinned then winced. “You have quite a right hook.” “I try.” Lilith replied dryly as she looked at the men laid out on the floor. “You did that?” He looked to where she gestured and shrugged his shoulders, “With your help, I doubt they will be bothering anyone else for quite some time now.” Lilith sat down and gazed out the window once more turning in her seat to do so. Dark and heavy storm clouds were coming in quickly, as she watched a fork of lightning arched down hitting the ground in the distance. “It is going to be a big one.” she commented to herself “Bigger then you know.” The man sat next to her his eyes locked on her face. “My name is Chamuel, my friends call me 'champ'. You are?” Lilith looked at him, his jaw was red and swollen from her punch, but he had a slight smile on his face and his blue eyes were sparkling. “I'm Lilith, but most my friends call me 'Lilly', Thank you for your help.” “You're welcome.” he gently rubbed his jaw before looking out the window. “Things sure have gotten interesting...” “This stop is mine.” Lilith stood and made her way to the doors. “Nice to meet you.” “I hope you do not get caught in the storm.” He replied raising his hand in farewell as she walked out the open door. “Because this one involves you.” Lilith walked though her door as the sky opened up, it was hard to hear anything over the roar of the rain and the clash of thunder. Dumping her things in the entrance way she made her way up the sweeping staircase to the third floor and opened the door to her room. There was a blur of movement before Lilith was pushed to the floor. A large and heavy body lay on top of her, but Lilith felt no fear as she ran her hands though the soft fur and listened to Elita's loud purr whenever the tiger exhaled. “Elita, did you miss me?” Lilith buried her face into the tiger's neck. “I missed you too.” Faintly in her head Lilith kept hearing what she thought was Elita's voice. I love you mistress, I am always missing you when you go out, stay home so I can protect you. The voice had been getting louder and louder for the past few years, driving Lilith to think she was going crazy. “Come with me, I need a bath and I will tell you about my day.” She gently pushed the cat and obediently Elita stood and turned leading the way into the bathroom. As the bath filled up with warm water Lilith spoke, she told the tiger all about the strange dream and what had happened that day. As she lay in the tub she finished, “I didn't get the job in the end, but I was thinking that is a good thing. With everything that has been happening today I think I need to get my head looked at.” A loud crash came from her bedroom and hastily Lilith got out of the bath and wrapped a robe around herself as she walked into her room. The sight that greeted her looked to be from an old biblical tale of good verses evil. A man was on one knee his sward held up, his skin was tanned and short light brown hair had fallen over his face, from his back bat-like black wings were outstretched. He looked to be to slender to hold up the massive sword he was using. The second man had white bird-like wings gently flapping keeping him in place above the kneeling man, both faces were turned toward her, looking at her in shock. Lilith stared back. The second man was from the train that very morning, Chamuel. “What is going on here? Why are you in my house? Who are you? Why are you both fighting?” Lilith shot out one question after another at them as Elita pushed in front of her and hissed menacingly at the both of them. The kneeling man gave a mighty heave that sounded like thunder echoing around the room, Chamuel was sent spinning away, with a loud crack his head hit the roof. “Princess, we have come to take you home.” “What the hell are you talking about?” Lilith backed away as he advanced on her, only stopping when her back hit the wall. She quickly cast a glance at Elita who was crouched in the staling position watching Chamuel. The man slammed his hand into the wall forcing her attention back to him. “I am taking you home Princess.” “Get away from me!” Lilith yelled and with both hands on his chest pushed him back, much to her shock he grabber her wrists and pulled her back with him. “Who the hell are you?!” “Please my Lady, forgive me.” He said from under her as they lay on the floor. “I am Prince Ayperos, your intended husband.” “Like hell you are let me go!” Lilith struggled against him and his arms wrapped tightly around her. “Sorry Princess, but I can not. We have been waiting for you for a very long time, the daughter of a demon and a human to be born into the world. The powers you have locked in your body will be a great asset for us.” Elita let out a snarl just before Lilith was pulled away from the man wearing all black and slung over the shoulder of Chamuel. “Now now Ayperos, You really think I will let you get away with her that easy?” “Champ, put me down!” Lilith punched into his back as she kicked out with her legs. Unable to move him a thought struck her and grabbing a handful of his feathers pulled then out. He yelped and grabbing her waist pushed her out to arms length before him. “That was not nice Lilly, why did you hurt me like that?” “Because you both are not listening to me!” Lilith said fighting off tears. Gently Chamuel tucked a hand behind her knees and cradled her close to his chest. “Sorry Lilly, but we both have no choice.” “Champ..? Lilly...? When did you two become such good friends?” Ayperos stood glaring at the other man. “Release my wife-to-be before I chop off something you may need later, like your head.” “You know you lied to her, why did you not tell her the truth?” Chamuel taunted. “Lilith, you are not the begotten of human-demon, you are actually angel-demon. The blood of nobles runs through your veins, nobles on both sides. You are also my intended.” Lilith said nothing for a while processing the information she had just been told, this time her left fist connected with his jaw. Though it lacked the force of her right, it was still enough to make him release the grip he had on her. “Get out, the both of you. I do not want to hear your lies.” “You don't believe your own eyes?” Ayperos asked flapping his wings slightly. Lilith looked from his wet form to Chamuel's and back. Ayperos took a step closer, “This storm in not a storm, it is a war we are fighting, we all are fighting over you.” “I don't want a war over me, put a stop to it and leave me alone.” Lilith stated backing to the wall again and sliding down it. She hugged her knees and Elita walked over to stand in front of her growling softly. “I can't do that Lilith, we need you.” Ayperos stopped, holding his hand out to her. “Please come with me.” “Why should Lilly go with you? To see the delights of hell?” Chamuel asked as he walked over to stand beside Ayperos to offer his own hand. Lilith stood her hands clenched into fists at her sides, “Get out, get out, get out, get out!” She yelled, something burst from her body she could feel something bending to her will before the darkness overcome her. Outside in the dark and now silent night two figures floated in the sky, each looked worse for wear as he hung in the air. “Well that was something.” Chamuel stated wrinkling his nose at the smell of burnt feathers. “She has put up a barrier around her home.” Ayperos stated as he touched it and quickly pulled his fingers back with a yelp. “I will not break though it.” Chamuel nodded his agreement, “looks like your one step behind me brother.” “What do you mean?” “Well my demon friend, she knows me well, I helped her on the train.” Chamuel looked over at the other man. “You know, you are more handsome in this form then your other.” “And you look like a really ugly girl with short hair.” Ayperos retorted vanishing. “Teaches me for trying to be nice.” Lilith woke to a phone ringing, locating it next to the bed she picked it up. “Hello?” She spoke as her eyes scanned the room, it was a guest bedroom located on the second floor of her home. “Lilly, it's May. Are you still coming to the coffee shop at one?” “Yeah, I will still be there. Who was coming again?” Lilith asked rubbing the sleep out of her eyes. “Well there was me, 'Seth and Able. Don't you remember? Able asked you out and you made it into a double date.” “That's right, I did. Sorry May, I have had a lot happen yesterday, I will tell you about it when I see you.” “Alright, we will meet up at twelve thirty, that gives us a chance to talk before the men get there.” “Sure, I will see you then May.” Lilith hung up the phone and dragged her tired body out of bed. After a quick shower she headed down the stairs and into the dining room, Elita was in the corner eating her own food when Mary, one of the maids walked in. After guiding Lilith to the table and placing the food before her Mary turned to leave but Lilith stopped her. “Mary, please call in come contractors to fix the roof in my room and get Adam to call in some more bodyguards, and a few more on the security team?” “Yes my Lady.” Mary replied dipping a little curtsy before hurrying out of the room.
  4. Author's Notes: I wanted to share a little bit of my recent writing after reading some of the works here (I enjoyed them quite a bit!). So, I decided to post this instead of my most recent attempt at NaNoWriMo partly because I haven't a copy of it with me (it's on my PC several states away) and partly because I haven't gotten a chance to look over it yet. A little background. This is a story that's been in my head since I was in technical school. I used to think about it as I delivered the action notice and eventually came to write it when I was in Texas. I offered a few of my wingmen a chance to read what I had written (I really hate letting people read my stuff--case of being my own worst critic and all). It came to be I lost that copy of it because I'm a dork and accidentally murdered the laptop it was stored on. Being the kind of person I am, though, and as embedded as technology and data loss is in my life, it wasn't the end of the world. Some time passes and I eventually decide to rewrite it once again. It was going to be the subject of the most recent NaNoWriMo, but I couldn't bring myself to do it, haha. When I get back home, I'll toss up some of the poetry I wrote a few years ago if anyone is interested. The 39 in the title comes from my bunk number in basic. Please don't steal this from me, haha. It's not complete in the least and I have the power of copyright on my side. Constructive criticism, corrections, and questions welcome and encouraged. Ego stroking also welcome and encouraged, haha. Taking some advice from Rune, I've broken it up into smaller chunks. ====== Plate 39 The Aftermath: Part One Clicking noises came from the train’s engine as it cooled down, the lights in its cars dimming as the last of the power began to fade away. Some of the windows were open, curtains billowing out. Despite the train being partially embedded in the face of a mountain, there was little damage done to the exterior—a testament to the quality of its build. Twisted branches dangled from the surviving trees; some were wrenched away entirely, littering the ground. Nearby birds cried out, almost mourning the destroyed swath of land beneath the metal disturbance. The sun was high up in the sky, a few clouds accompanying it as the wind gusted irregularly. Uphill from the site, a blonde woman was making her way through the dense woods, her hair pulled back in a low ponytail. She paused for a moment to brush a few loose strands behind her ear, looking ahead at the wreck. Three of the train’s cars were on the mountain, seeming as though it were attempting to head up it. The last few cars were twisted onto their sides, exposing the bottoms—smooth, with two raised parallel lines running through the middle, forming a channel the track could run through. She turned her gaze upward and saw one of the plates in the distance—a large city encased in a dome, held up by a single metal support towering far above the surface. A distorted, crackling beam of light curved through the air, connecting the plate to another, too far to be seen from her position. The woman continued downhill, careful to tread quietly. As she approached the train, she noticed a shoe at the base of one of the cars. Drawing near, she felt a wave of nausea begin to well up inside her. The shoe wasn’t simply leaning against the train—a foot was still inside of it, keeping it upright. She turned away momentarily, her eyes closed as she regained control of herself. Feeling steadier, she headed towards the first car, climbing up the mountain slowly to avoid scraping her bare knees against the jutting rocks. The slope of the rocky face was gentle enough for her to stop with confidence to check the back pocket of her shorts before moving ahead. Upon reaching the door of the car, she first peered into the window, scanning the area within. Thus far, she heard nothing but the birds and leaves rustling in the wind, leading her to believe no one in the train had survived or, if nothing else, was rendered unconscious. She pushed the door open and stepped inside, a hand kept on the wall to steady herself against the angle of the car. It was empty, little more within beyond the computers and machinery that ran the train—and somehow let it crash to the surface. Carefully, so as not to lose her footing, she walked through the door to the second car. A few people were sitting in seats, some with their face smashed against a window, blood dripping from their wounds. A few bodies were strewn about the aisle, apparently thrown from their seats by the unnatural angle their limbs took. None looked well enough to be alive—it was just as well, she thought, having not forgotten the shoe she saw earlier. As she walked through the cars, it was scene after similar scene of scattered bodies. At one point, she noticed someone with teeth embedded in the back of his head. Her gaze turning to the person behind him, she saw another man with his mouth agape, bloody and missing what seemed to be the same number of teeth. She stopped by the bathrooms, checking the one reserved for females first. She found a woman slumped on the ground, her jaw completely destroyed. One of the sinks was bloody and chipped—upon further inspection, she saw broken teeth in the basin. Pushing the door open to the stall revealed a woman with her skirt hitched up to her waist and panties around her knees, her head hanging limply against her chest. She seemed to be hugging the toilet, clinging to something solid after a rough night. The blonde looked a little closer and saw one of the dead woman’s ears was torn, an earring undoubtedly missing. Wondering where it could have gone, she looked around the stall for it. She finally discovered it when she examined the door and saw the woman’s earring, a bit of flesh and blood still clinging to it, hanging from the hook.
  5. These are the gifts I made for people in the Homestuck Secret Santa. They're all varying lengths, ratings, and quality (mostly closer to "sucks" than "good"). I haven't written fan fiction in, like, forever, so I have no idea how to write characters that aren't out of character, whoops. I'll split these into two separate posts once the time limit goes by and leave it at four and four each, unless anyone would rather them all in their own post. And if you think any of my ratings or summaries are bunk after reading, let me know and I'll adjust accordingly. Waiting Summary: Kanaya waits for Rose to show up. Rating: K There was surprisingly little to busy herself with, even in the confines of the common area where various piles of things had accumulated, apparently growing with each day that passed. Kanaya rubbed her bare arms, pursing her lips as she looked around the room, her eyes darting to the doorways every few seconds. Every little sound set her at edge, ready to spring from her seat. It never failed to disappoint. Kanaya decided it was time once again to take count of the various books left lying around. Pile after pile, left haphazardly on almost every available surface that wasn’t occupied by some other pile of objects. Cleanliness never seemed to be much of a priority on the meteor, nor did any sort of coordination when it came to the rugs, but that she could forgive. At the least it made the place feel like a home and less of a laboratory, though some had been worn so thin they did nothing against the hard metal beneath. Rose still hadn't arrived. How much time had passed? She tried not to think of it, but the ticking of the clock behind her tempted her into turning around. An hour. Sixty minutes. Second after second come and gone. Kanaya had spent that time on the sofa, crossing and uncrossing her legs, flipping through the occasional book, arranging and rearranging bottles. After the passage of an hour, she supposed it was high time to admit to herself something was wrong. Not that it made much sense. Rose had been the one to set everything up and she certainly wasn’t the type to be so tardy, especially for an event of her own planning. At first she thought nothing of it as she got dressed, slipping on her daily attire. If Rose hadn't bothered with furnishing any details, she couldn't have been planning anything out of the ordinary. Doubt sank in as she thought of her first interactions with Rose, of the work she put into understanding human sarcasm in order to have some semblance of a conversation. It never stopped being puzzling to her, the things Rose said and did. Dave was equally puzzling, but he was easy to ignore as long as he kept his voice down--which he so often did--and didn't cross paths with Karkat--which seemed to happen less and less. Kanaya adjusted her skirt, vaguely unsatisfied with what she put on. She had picked through the rest of her clothing, trying to decide exactly what Rose meant. Was it a date? Was it part of her romantic machinations? And what if it wasn't? Kanaya put aside thoughts of wearing nicer apparel--it would be easier to explain being underdressed than overdressed. And yet here she was on the sofa in casual attire, trying to convince herself she had made the right choice. She leant back, letting out a slow breath as she stared at the ceiling, willing it to offer her something in the way of answers. From her vantage point she could see part of the clock. Kanaya watched the second hand move along its predestined path, step by step, pausing at every hash mark. She watched until the clock rang, signalling the top of the hour. Worse, it signalled she had been staring at the clock for almost fifteen minutes. She crossed her arms, huffing slightly. Why would Rose take so long to show up? Perhaps this was not where they were supposed to meet? Perhaps it was an elaborate ruse, to see just how much she was willing to put up with? It wasn't as though the meteor was particularly large. It wouldn't take much time to get up and look, for Rose to poke her head in and ask for a bit of time as she got ready. Of course, Kanaya had considered doing the same herself. It wouldn't be fair if she didn't. But what if she got up to look for Rose and they ended up just missing each other, doing so for the duration of the search? Such contrived shenanigans seemed to be the norm, even before she met Rose, before she knew what a human was. Not that it explained what was taking so long. If Rose was looking for her, she surely would have come across her sitting in the common room. Granted, she might have caught her trying out various seating positions and, more embarrassingly, facial expressions. For what felt like hours, Kanaya thought she would practise holding conversations with Rose, running through different scenarios. She mouthed words, scripting her responses and actions for when Rose finally arrived. And when she tired of that, she flopped onto the couch, her arm across her eyes, and tried to nap. It wasn't much of a success. She got up almost immediately from her attempted nap, spending the next block of time fixing her hair and taming rebellious strands. Frustrating. Absolutely frustrating. To sit there for--Kanaya turned to look at the clock, rolling her eyes as she settled back into position--to sit there for two and a half hours and not even be afforded the simple respect of being informed of what was going on. Just frustrating. She got up from the couch, hands balled into fists as she stormed across the room. Heat rose in her face, every single step taken carefully and purposefully. Something stopped her from crossing the doorway, from stepping over the threshold. Kanaya thought of the way Rose looked when she set up the whole thing. She remembered the faintest hints in her expressions, the little quirks that betrayed her confidence, telling her that Rose was nervous--perhaps even afraid of rejection. Letting out a calming breath, Kanaya loosened her hands. She stretched her fingers, examining them briefly. Something simply must have gone wrong. That's all there was to it. It just wasn't like Rose to be so late, regardless of the intended purpose of the meeting. Her mind clearer, she stepped through the doorway. Trepidation Summary: Kanaya makes a dress for Rose while Porrim tries to pry information from her. Rating: T Warnings: Hints at ectoincest. Kanaya pinned a bit of green ribbon at the waist of a dusty pink dress, smoothing it against the fabric. "What do you think of this?" She moved to the side, pushing aside a basket of various fabrics, ribbons, and scissors with her foot, allowing Porrim to view the dress in full. She looked up from her book, a scandalous bit of blackrom literature she had plucked out of Karkat's collection. "This for Rose?" She stood from the chaise, slipping in her bookmark to keep her place, and approached Kanaya. "Perhaps," she replied, looking down at the dress. The faintest hint of uncertainty crossed her face, gone as soon as it came. "I have not yet finalised the design. If nothing else, it will be good practise." Porrim placed a hand at her waist, the other tapping her chin as she examined the dress, walking around the mannequin slowly. "A lighter green may be in order." She bent by the basket, pushing around bits of yarn and spools of thread before pulling out a length of green ribbon, a few shades lighter than the one already pinned to the dress. With a slight grunt, Porrim stood, straightening her dress, before wrapping the ribbon around the mannequin. "What do you make of this colour?" "I will consider it." She smiled, unpinning the current ribbon and setting it back in the basket along with the ribbon Porrim picked out. "I think it time for me to take a break." "It seems you're almost done with the dress." "Perhaps." "No need to doubt yourself," she said, placing a hand on Kanaya's shoulder, a smile crossing her lips. "Rose will appreciate any gift you give her. I hear she almost stood you up. How did your date turn out?" Kanaya cleared her throat and turned away, busying herself with organising the various yards of fabric. Porrim chuckled, settling back into the chaise, picking up her book. She cracked it open, scanning the text briefly for her spot. "'I can do this no longer', she shouted. Dark blood spilt from her lip, a delicious shade of chocolate." She paused, watching for Kanaya's reaction. When Kanaya simply continued to move around fabrics, Porrim resumed, "She threw her against the wall, her forearm pressing against her throat. The highblood laughed, pressing her knee between her assailant's legs, drops of blood staining the fabric of her--" A sudden clatter from across the room broke Porrim's pace, taking her attention from the book. Kanaya was staring, a ball of multicoloured yarn in each hand. "Must you read that aloud?" "Is it bothering you?" The corner of her mouth lifted into a smirk as she stretched her legs on the chaise, the book dangling from her hand as she met the other's gaze. "I thought you liked these." "I enjoy them privately." "Oh?" Porrim arched a brow, swinging her legs off the chaise and stood, leaving the book forgotten on the seat. "I'm not allowed to share in this enjoyment with you?" She approached and stood over her, knowing her presence was still one Kanaya found somewhat imposing. She lowered her voice, taking the yarn from Kanaya's hands, tossing them into a nearby basket. "Does Rose know you, ah, enjoy such literature alone?" Kanaya bit her lip, looking away from her dancestor. "We have our boundaries." "What need have you for boundaries about literature?" Porrim took Kanaya's chin in her hand, turning her face towards her. "Do you also regard her with this sort of trepidation or am I the lone benefactor of such behaviour?" Silence passed between them, little heard aside from their breathing, the shuffling of fabric as they shifted position. "This is uncomfortable," Kanaya said finally, trying to move back from Porrim, as though she were attempting to disappear into the fabric. "It's really none of your business." "I'm simply looking out for you, Kanaya. There's no need to be shy. I'm sure Rose is--" She halted, a devious smile crossing her lips. "Perhaps we could do a bit of roleplay." "Roleplay what?" "Oh, come on, you know. I'll pretend to be Rose and we'll practise how your first time will go about." Kanaya began to shake--Porrim wasn't sure at first if it was from anger or something else until a laugh escaped her lips, allowing her to relax slightly. "Don't laugh. It'll be good practise." "Porrim, I'm not having sex with you--" "I can't believe you would even say such a thing--" "--I don't think Rose would even appreciate it--" "--as though I were some sort of village two-wheeled device--" "--it's just not proper--" No longer interesting in trying to speaking over her, Porrim grabbed Kanaya by the shoulders, pulling her back towards the chaise, and sat her down, pushing aside the book. She took a seat beside her, smoothing the fabric of her dress over her knees. Porrim began to tie up her hair, pulling it off her shoulders, with a bit of ribbon. "Now, let's begin." "I said I'm not--" "Calm down, Kanaya. We're not going to have sex. I just want to help you get over your nervousness." She patted her dancestor on the knee, taking care to make it as amicable a gesture as possible. "It's for the best. We wouldn't want you to freeze up and lose control of the situation, would we?" Porrim smiled brightly, waiting for a response. Kanaya let out a breath, scratching her neck at the edge of her hair. "Very well." She took Porrim's hands in hers, intertwining their fingers. She looked at her fingers, admiring how neat her nails were kept, the way Porrim’s fingers pressed against hers. "Rose,” she said, her voice quiet, “I think things are moving entirely too quickly, and we should proceed with caution." Porrim rolled her eyes and leant towards Kanaya, parting her lips slightly. "I don't think we're moving too quickly at all." She took her hand from Kanaya's and cupped her face, running her thumb across her cheek. "I'm ready for this, Kanaya. Very much so." She sat frozen on the chaise, staring into Porrim's eyes, trying not to look at the way her fangs ever so slightly poked out between her lips, the way her piercings glimmered in the light. She tried not to imagine where the swirls of her tattoos went, if they led to delightfully forbidden places. She tried not to imagine perching Rose between them, kept her mind from considering if that would be a far better gift than a simple dress. Porrim tapped her cheek, bringing her out of her thoughts. "Kanaya? Are you okay?" She smiled and nodded, pulling Porrim's hand from her cheek. "I'm very much okay. And I'm very much certain we're not ready for this." She leant forward, pressing Porrim against the chaise's armrest, pressing her lips against hers. Her hand trailed along Porrim's hip as they kissed, pulling up the fabric of her dress slightly. Kanaya pulled away, still smiling. "I think that's break enough," she said, and stood, returning to her work at the mannequin and leaving Porrim to resume her reading. Game Night Summary: Board games always seem more fun in retrospect than in reality. Dave, Karkat, and Rose try to pass the time on the meteor. Rating: T Game night was an awful idea. For one, the game they were playing right now was entirely too complicated, but if they played yet another round of Chutes and Ladders, Dave was going to seriously consider asking Kanaya to teach him how to sew. At least that would have been a productive use of his time, and while he would never craft a smuppet--nor would he want to--he could make at least some SBaHJ capes. It was called Arkham Horror, a game Rose remembered playing some time ago. Through a series of carefully coordinated shenanigans, they managed to procure a bounty of board games. Karkat didn't care much for the cooperative games, instead thriving on competition. Rose, on the other hand, enjoyed finding ways to bend the rules, making dubious moves that aggravated both Dave and Karkat. "Rose, where does it say in the rules you can reroll? Is that some kind of lesbian power your character has?" Dave flipped through the manual, more halfheartedly than anything. Rose was always the ones who read the rules, leaving the other two at her mercy. "I'm pretty sure if you're fighting against Cthulhu himself, he's not going to dodge an attack and just be like, 'oh, you want a redo? Okay, why the fuck not, I'm only a timeless and immortal god. I got nothing but time, bro'." "It's well within my right to reroll," she said simply, rolling her dice. "We would not have ended up in this situation had you not been so foolhardy the entire game and continuously found yourself lost in time and space." "Some god you turned out to be." Karkat chuckled, picking up the card containing the Elder One's information. "If you had listened to me from the start, we wouldn't have a metric fuckton of gates open, waking up this asshole." He tapped his chin with the card, looking up at the ceiling with narrowed eyes. "It's all beginning to sound very familiar, actually." A die thrown at his head brought his attention back to Dave. "Because your suggestions were bogus, Karkat. My guy wouldn't spend his time cowering in fear from some eldritch abominations. He'd get right in there and use his whip to make them feel emasculated. Whips and guns trump tentacles." "You say this with such certainty, such familiarity with tentacled creatures. And yet here we are, having our collective asses handed to us by the Elder One. Regardless, it seems we have lost the battle for all of mankind yet again. I think you'll find that when it comes to losing these games, we are simply the best there is." Karkat rolled his eyes, shoving the cards and pieces laid out before him onto the game board, knocking over their characters. "Can we play something that isn't a complete waste of our time? Is there nothing in there actually worth playing, something that isn't so complicated it takes hours to learn and even longer to appreciate?" "Let me look," Dave said, pushing around boxes. "Monopoly again? No way." He tossed the box aside, the lid lifting as it landed, revealing the mess of paper money and cards within. "What about this one?" "Dixit? Hand me the instructions." She took the booklet, smoothing her robes as she settled back into position. As she read, Karkat and Dave flipped through the cards. "Is there something in particular about your alien society that finds these kinds of things amusing?" He held up a card, portraying two armoured ants atop a stack of gold coins, attacking each other with swords in their mandibles. "I mean, look at these things, they're absolutely fucking incomprehensible. I might actually prefer to continue to have my ass handed to me in that horrorterror game than do whatever this wretched excuse of a game expects me to do." Rose set the booklet down and collected the cards, shuffling them and handing a small stack each to Dave and Karkat, taking one for herself as well. She set the remaining cards aside. "It appears all you have to do is construct a sentence about one of your cards." "A storytelling game?" Dave got up and started poking through the pile of board games, pushing them aside as he dug deeper. "Never mind, put the game back. I think I can find something cooler than this..." "No, no!" Karkat slapped his hand on the ground, glaring at Dave. "Sit your ass down because we are playing this game. We played everything else in that awful pile." "Jegus, dude, okay." He complied, exchanging looks with his sister. "Didn't think you were into these rabbits so much." He picked up the small wooden rabbit, holding it between two fingers. "You got these things on Alternia? In human culture, these little guys lay eggs filled with baby rabbits and hide them in bushes and trees from predators. When they're born they're made of chocolate, so kids go hunting for them so they can eat them." Karkat scowled, picking a different coloured rabbit. "That is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard of, and I've heard more than enough ridiculous things in the miserable, worthless sweeps I have existed." "It's absolutely factual, Karkat," Rose said, smiling. "It was originally something of a religious practice as people once thought consuming these chocolate bunnies would bring them closer to Jegus, but eventually the practice had become so widespread, they had to ban people from hunting these Easter eggs." "Whatever, let's just play this idiotic game and get it over with." "Very well. As I said, you construct a sentence about one of your images. Then you select two cards from your hand, collecting two cards from the others. The other two players will also choose two cards they think are represented best by your sentence. Then the cards are displayed and players, excluding the storyteller, vote with these tokens here..." She paused to hand them small disks, coloured to match their rabbit pieces. "... on which one you think is the card initially chosen. Points will be distributed accordingly. The first to reach the end of this path wins the game, and, presumably, all of the chocolate bunnies." "Wait, are we playing as rabbits or are we wearing rabbit costumes? Because I don't know if I'm down with rabbit cannibalism, even if their babies are completely delicious." "They're wooden pieces! They're not even real! Just start the game, Rose, before I completely lose my shit." Karkat heard Dave mutter something under his breath, shooting a glare in his direction but said nothing. Dave flipped through his cards briefly before setting them down. "Hey man, I just want to be sure what the story is here. I think we all learned an important lesson about storytelling when we played Arabian Nights." "Yeah, the lesson we learnt was you're an absolute failure at reading aloud. Even when you did manage to keep your voice loud enough to hear, you rewrote the whole thing on the spot and turned it into one of your ridiculous raps." "I happened to think they added to the story. Scheherazade could have learned a thing or two about staying alive if she just knew how to drop a beat. It wouldn’t have taken her a thousand nights to convince her murderous husband not to kill her." Rose chuckled, arranging her cards in her hand as she spoke. "I believe her husband would have responded by dropping a sword in her chest, dear brother." "See, Rose agrees with me!" "Oh, don't get me wrong, Karkat. While I believe that Shahryar would not have been cultured enough to appreciate the sicknasty beats his thousandth wife would have surely dropped, it did add a certain flair to the game itself. I especially appreciated when he would tell us in rhyme exactly what happened between Sinbad and the various jinn he encountered. What was it again? I believe there was something about large blue phalluses..." Karkat threw the cards in the air, getting up. "I am not listening to this again!" He crossed the playing area, passing between Rose and Dave, throwing himself into the pile of board games. "I'm taking a nap." Dave lifted a brow, the corner of his mouth quirking. "Right there?" "Of course right here, numbskull." He curled into himself, using Apples to Apples to rest his head upon as he closed his eyes. "What do you think I'm doing? These games are exhausting. You two are exhausting. Therefore, I am exhausted and would appreciate it if you all just left me alone." Rose and Dave exchanged glances, conspiratorial smiles crossing their faces. Without warning, they leapt into the pile with Karkat, sandwiching him between them. Rose adjusted her robes, leaning back on the boxes, resting her feet on Karkat's legs. "Yes," she said, shutting her eyes, "I can definitely go for a nap as well. Brilliant idea, Karkat." Karkat growled as he bunched up Dave's cape, using it as a cushion between his head and the box. He shut his eyes again, nuzzling his head against Dave’s armpit. "Don't think this means we can have any feelings jams here. I’m just trying to sleep." Dave gasped, slapping Karkat on the arm. "I'm offended. I think I would be a better pale bro than your juggalo bro. My sick fires definitely overwhelm his miracles, not to mention--" "Strider,” he warned, cracking an eye open. “If you don't stop talking, I'm going to shove a card game right up your--" "Fair enough, dude. Catch your forty winks." They curled up together, making the occasional snarky remark as they got comfortable, or as much as they could on a pile of rectangular cardboard boxes, some sturdier than others. Once they settled in, breathing began to slow, thoughts began to fade away, and they fell asleep. Game night was a resounding success. A Moment Summary: Dave and Jade are out hunting for frogs and take a break. Rating: M Warnings: Non-explicit sexual encounter. It was little more than a moment. A break from all that frog breeding. A chance to breathe. Or at least it was supposed to be. The environment was less than picturesque since the Forge had just been stoked, melting the snow nearby, forming muddy puddles. Defrosted frogs went about their business, perhaps to resume business left unfinished since being frozen. It wouldn't be long before the whole planet warmed up, meaning more frogs would be hopping around the place, flopping around in the melted snow, leaping into the farthest branches of the trees. Jade was wearing her 3 AM dress, a somewhat odd choice of fashion given the occasion--perhaps she wore in anticipation for the warmth from the Forge. Either way, Dave hoped she wouldn't notice his looking, the way he stole frequent glances, admiring the way her shoulders and clavicles stood in such stark contrast to the black of her dress. It didn't help either that the fabric was eye-catching, that it hung quite nicely around her hips. A frog in each hand, he approached, tapping her on the shoulder. She was crouched near a tree, trying to coax a frog from its hiding spot amongst the roots. Jade waved a hand, intent on retrieving the frog. "He'll come out eventually," he said, kneeling beside her. "I hope so." She moved away from the tangled mess of roots and looked at the frogs Dave had brought her. "What are you still doing with those?" He shrugged, letting the frogs go. They hopped towards the roots, apparently serving as reason enough for the frog already in there to come out. Jade snatched it, smiling triumphantly. Then, with a pat on its head, she let the frog go, waving goodbye to the little amphibian. Dave stood, offering a hand to Jade. She got to her feet, smoothing her dress. "How much more of this do we have to do? Not that I don’t love harassing random frogs, but they’re terrible wordsmiths." She lifted her shoulders. "We'll know when we finish. Kanaya seemed certain of that." She let out a breath, seeming to deflate. "You okay?" He placed his hands on her shoulders, trying not to squeeze too tightly or make it obvious the effect her bare skin was having on him. "I'm sure we'll finish. They don’t have to rap with me, it’s cool." "No, it's not that," she said, the corner of her mouth lifting into a half smile. "I guess I'm feeling tired. And a little cold." Jade lowered her gaze, the smile falling from her lips. "Oh." Dave fidgeted, giving her shoulders a slight squeeze. "Do you need a jacket?" She shook her head, but offered little else in the way of response. Her hair fell over her face, catching on her glasses. "I don't--" She looked up and in a single movement threw her arms about his neck, kissing him. Dave stumbled backwards, tripping over his feet as he brought Jade down with him, landing on the snow with a thud. His hands rested awkwardly at his sides, fists full of snow, as Jade let out a shaky breath, now splayed atop him. Instead of getting up or pushing away from him, she propped her head up on her hand, smiling. "What, you've never been kissed before?" He cleared his throat, releasing the snow from his grip. "You didn't seem too sure yourself." "I'm not the reason we're on the ground now." Jade tapped his nose, chuckling. "What are you so nervous about anyway?" Dave took a breath and pushed Jade onto her back. He leant over her, suddenly at a loss as he stared down at her, propped up on his arms. She looked up at him with a bright expectant look, an almost amused expression, her dark hair flecked with snow. He adjusted his sunglasses and cupped her face in one hand as he kissed her. The arm supporting him began to shake as he felt heat rise in his cheeks, his stomach pulling into knots; he broke the kiss, letting his hand drop back to the ground. "That's a start." Jade laughed, clasping her hands together behind his neck. "What are you thinking about?" "Spent all this time before acting all coy, knowing when things were going to happen before they did, and now you can't even guess what I’m thinking?" "This is different." "Here," he said, taking one of her hands from his neck and pressing it to his chest. "Can you feel that? Tell me what you think I got on my mind." Jade's hand lingered even after he let go to maintain his balance, the weakness in his arms becoming more and more noticeable. His heartbeat pounded in his ears, bringing his breathing out of rhythm right along with it. She lifted her knees, the fabric of her dress pulling back as she planted her feet on the ground, her leg brushing up against Dave's. He swore he felt his heart skip a few beats before resuming its frenzied pace. Jade pulled him down, pressing their foreheads together as he lay atop her, her breath warm on his skin as she spoke. "That was cheesy, Dave." He let a few moments pass before he replied, hoping his throat wouldn't betray him and stick. "I think you're just too embarrassed to admit it worked on you." Jade offered him a broad grin, reaching for his hand. She pushed him up a bit and brought his hand to her chest, nestling it between her breasts. "Do you think you can tell me what I'm thinking of?" she asked, letting go. For several seconds, Dave was at a loss as his hand rested on her, his fingertips brushing against exposed flesh, the gauzy fabric beneath his palm almost too much to bear. Jade took his hand again, moving it atop her breast, pressing her fingers against his. "What am I thinking about now?" Her voice was soft, almost inaudible. Unwilling to let her take control of the situation, Dave moved his hand away, reaching back for her legs, trailing a cold hand down her thigh, considerably warmer than his fingers were. "What am I thinking about?" he repeated back to her, trying to keep a straight face. He could feel his mouth quivering, his throat catching his every breath. She giggled, squeezing his hand between her legs. Jade let out a breath and closed her eyes, the smile falling from her face as Dave ventured further. He nestled against her neck, burying his nose in her hair, unable to handle looking at Jade’s expressions any longer, the way her lips parted, the way her eyelids fluttered at the behest of his touch. A nearby ribbit, loud and cacophonous, broke the quiet. Dave's fingers, warm and twitchy, froze against Jade's skin, the slick fabric he had pushed aside now sliding back into place. The frog leapt away, seemingly content with having ruined the moment.
  6. A collab between Myself and Mae. short little snippets of life on an island called Kametsu. There was an island, with a population of 16,520. This island was called Kametsu and many of the people that lived there were sort of strange. There was a man named Koby, the mayor, who was often referred to affectionately by his townsfolk and “God.” The judge Renzourin, held much of the power over the people, was fair to everyone who came through his court. The chiefs of police: Mae, Shazi and Raz, kept people in order with the help of their police force. Shazi was on patrol down Main street when she spied a man limping away from his car. Being one of the police force it was her duty to investigate. “Hello, are you alright?” She asked the man. “Kro is fine, but his car isn’t,” The man responded. Puzzled by Kro referring to himself in the third person she glanced at the car. It indeed, did not look alright “Stay here and try not to hurt yourself more,” Shazi told him. She went to investigate the car. “Kro thinks that you should stay away from that” Kro called behind him, just as the car become alight on fire. “Oh dear” Shazi said, and quickly pulled out her phone to call the fire brigade.
  7. So, here's another attempt at getting such a competition in the works. The rules are simple: You have one month to complete a story. A minimum of 500 words is required, but beyond that it can be as long as you like. No recycling old written pieces!! Whether written by yourself, or someone else, this is not allowed. There will be several requirements of entry that should prevent this, I hope. For our first competition, our writers will be required to write a peice following on from this paragraph. From here onwards it can pretty much be whatever you want, but you must include the following characters: 1. A best friend 2. A shady individual Deadline will be the 25th of November. Winner will chose how the next story starts off and what sorts of characters that are to be in it. Good luck!
  8. I do not own any of the names but my own, also I will not give descriptions on the people or their clothes, that is for you to fill in. Enjoy the very first part!! Part one: The win It was a normal Saturday morning, Talena was finishing up her weekly shopping. As she made her way home an impulse drew her to the lotto stand, the sign read ' 80 million draw tonight' not thinking much of it she bought a ticket anyway. As the old saying went ' you have to be in it no win it", tucking the ticket into her wallet Talena continued her way home. Later that night! Talena sat on her lounge stunned, the announcer had just called out the winning numbers, the numbers on her lotto ticket. She shook her head to clear it as the announcer spoke the numbers once more. Talena was not hearing things, he did call her numbers... She had won the lotto! Two months later A very happy Talena was sitting in first class, a glass of whiskey and cola on her little table. Around her were the other people from Australia, Shazi, Kazu Wolf and his wife. Talena was grinning when Shazi leaned over, " What are you so happy about?" She inquired playfully. Talena tilted her head to the side, " Let's see... I am a millionaire... We are flying to the U.S to have a kametsu convention so we get to meet all our friends." " You may be a millionaire Mae, but you dress like a poorper!" Kazu teased kneeling on his chair to look back at the girls. Talena swiped at him with the in flight magazine she had been reading before her mind drifted. "Be nice or I get them to turn this flight around." She smiled. Shazi started laughing, between gasps she managed to say; "Yeah right! The reason...you want to...fly there and have...the convention is so...you can see 'your' Koby!" Talena turned bright red as the pilot announced " We are approaching Dallas Airport, if you could all please take your seats and put on your seat belts we will be landing in fifteen minutes." Murder at the convention part two: Day of death. The convention was in full swing by the time Talena had spoken to everyone gathered, it seemed that no matter where she turned there were the smiling faces of everyone who agreed to come. In the corner Eve was picking on Chaos about something, Mask and Ba11ard laughing at them. Koby was lurking an the corner watching everything with sharp eyes. Icarus was leading Empathy around to all the groups. Zadra standing at the buffet table asking why there was not alcohol being served Botzz and fluffy right behind him. Poetic walked through the door looking as stunning as ever with Nellio close behind. All the women were looking beautiful, and Ripcat his eyes glassy and a huge smile on his face could not keep his hands to himself as the ladies walked passed him. Ripcat seeing Oby bend over to grab something was stunned when she turned and punched him in the nose, Yuna laughed at him as he went to wash up. Lantern was sitting in a stool where he could see everyone scratching away on his drawing pad, making sure he got as much as he could onto the paper. Leki was standing poised with a camera taking photos so he could make an album for everyone that attended. The clock had just struck 10 and suddenly Talena was not feeling well. Excusing herself she made her way out side and settled into one of the awaiting cars to take her back to the hotel. **Please note I have taken an artistic licence to all involved as I don't really know most of you well enough to get your personality into the story. And I am sorry Ripcat >.> Please don't hurt me xD** Part three Day of Death II Icarus, Empathy and Koby were headed to the hotel, all worried about how pale Talena looked as she left. Empathy was insisting that it could me nothing more then a mild fever, where as Koby worriedly ranted on about all the worst diseases he could think of. After arriving at the hotel the three of them rush into the elevator, Icarus imploring Koby to calm down and breathe. Nevertheless as soon as the elevator doors were open Koby was rushing down the hallway. When Koby reached the door Icarus grabbed his wrist to keep him from knocking. "It maybe best if Empathy knocked Koby, if Maé isn't feeling well, Empy can see to her." Nodding Empathy gently but firmly pushed him out of the way, "Koby, if Maé is sick she does not need you worrying like an over protective mother. If you care for her, STAY HERE!" she demanded before wrapping lightly on the door. They waited and not a sound could be heard Icarus grasped the doorknob and turned, the door was unlocked and it opened silently. Pushing Empathy to the side he stepped into the room and stopped blocking the door. There sitting in the chair was Talena, but no sound came from her lips to indicate she was sleeping. Before Empathy or Koby could utter a word he closed and locked the door. Eyes sharp he scanned the room for any sign of an intruder. He did not want to but Empathy in any danger, nothing seemed out of place so he made his way to the bathroom. Again, everything was neatly placed nothing had been touched. Walking back to the door where angry sounds from Empathy and Koby could be heard, he unlocked it and let them in. "Empy, I think she is dead..." Part 4 Suspicion Hours later Talena's close friends were sitting in Koby's room, those who could drink had one. Ballard had arrived as they wheeled out her body, for some reason the shock had been too much so he retired to his room for the night. Koby was sitting in the corner, his head in his hands. Empy was in an armchair close by just in case he went into shock, Icarus was pacing before them clearly unimpressed. "What the hell did the cops say?" He demanded of no one in perticular, "all they told me is 'don't leave town'." "I don't know." Came Koby's muffled reply. "They said that we are all under suspicion." Kazu stated. "I heard them as they were leaving, it seems Mae had left us all in her will before we flew over..." He trailed off as all eyes centered on him. "So someone here killed her?" Shazi yelled into the silence, "No one in this room would do that! "You're right, no one in this room would do that..." Icarus stated a nasty gleam in his eyes. "But someone NOT in this room could have." "Babe, we can not go around-" Empy was interrupted by Ripcat bursting his way into the room. "Guys! Guys!" He called eyes red and glassy. "It's Ballard! he-" They were all on there feet now, watching Ripcat vomit all over the floor. "He is dead, someone killed him." Everyone rushed out of the door and down the hall, stopping only when they reached the door. It was wide open blood smeared on the walls and all over the furniture, listening to a Rhythmic dripping as one they looked up. Empy and Shazi screamed, Koby covered his mouth and Icarus stood there gaping. Hanging from the light shade by metal coat-hangers was Ballard, his stomach torn open. His intestines looked to be stapled to the ceiling around where he hung. the left side of his face seemed to be missing and looking over at the mirror that showed that side of his head, Koby saw that his brain was no longer inside his skull. "Someone...call the police..." Kazu said before turning to vomit loudly in the hallway. Part 5 Suspicion II The police had just left angry and frustrated, they vowed to get to the bottom of it before anyone else got murdered. As the sky blackened and dark clouds rolled in... Icarus and Empy were sitting in their room consoling Koby who was gazing out the window, eyes red and swollen. Koby had wanted to get to know Talena better but now he would never have a chance. "Don't worry otouto-san, we will get the person or persons responsible!" He half growled taking Empy into his arms. "First Mae mae and now Ballard, who will be next?" Koby turned from the window, "Thanks oniisan, I'm heading to bed... It has been a long day..." MEANWHILE OUTSIDE Wolf was running, pulling his girlfriend along with him. He had to get her away from here, a shadowy figure was drawing closer. Wolf turned and ran face first into a tree causing the tree to shudder violently, knocking him and his girlfriend to the ground. Their pursuer stopped watching them intently, all would could see what the whites of the persons eyes. Pulling his frightened woman behind himself he took a step forward, "What the fuck do you want!?" He called out hoping someone would hear him. The person did not reply, instead drew out a knife. "So you're the one going around killing everyone, why?" Before the figure could answer Wolf charged intending to use his height and weight against the smaller opponent. The pain of the knife slicing through his skin failed to register as he turned to attack again, this time he landed a punch that sent the person flying. Snarling Wolf ripped the knife out of his stomach as the shadow got to its feet. With a flash of teeth it spun around arms extended. Wolf stopped and watched as his lady grabbed at her throat eyes wide in shock before she collapsed gurgling, only then did he see the knife the person held as they lowered their arms. Wolf bellowed in pain and anger rushing the figure with knife pointing towards its chest. Before the knife could do anything more then slice open the fabric of its clothes the person danced out of reach. Lighting streaked the sky, and Wolf stopped staring open mouthed. "It's you!?" he asked confused. "Shhhh...." Was the last thing he heard as the figure jumped at him breaking his neck. Thunder boomed and the figure looked down at its victims before taking hold of Wolfs lifeless arms to drag him over to his partner. **Oniisan is elder brother** **Otouto-san is little brother** Part 6 Suspicion part III At the same time Shazi rushed down the hall, eager to get to the phone in the foyer as the one is her room was not working. She had promised her mother that she would call about this time every night, that way her mother would have nothing to worry over. A flash of lighting caught her attention and stopping Shazi gazed out the window into the black night. A thunderclap sounded and Shazi jumped as the lights flickered, laughing nervously at herself she turned from the window and froze. A huge figure dressed in back was in arms reach. Trying to swallow the lump in her throat she took a trembling step back, only to have the person take a small step forward. Shazi turned to run but was pulled into a bear hug her mouth covered by a large hand, she squirmed trying to get loose but the arms only tightened around her. As the person in black squeezed her tighter, Shazis' eyes started to bulge, her chest heaving in her need for oxygen. Suddenly there was a muted snap and Shazi went limp, her spine and neck broken. The figure sighed quietly and with great care placed Shazi on the floor in a seated position under the window. Using two gloved fingers the figure closed her eyes and made its way silently out of the hallway... Part 7 Oh no! The police were gone again, after questioning them all once more, it seemed that Koby was the only one without an alibi, and even though the police knew there was not enough time for him to kill all three of his friends he was still their prime suspect. He sat on his bed and gripped at his hair, he was angry and upset that they would think he would have killed all those people. A knock came at the door but Koby ignored it, only raising his head when it opened. "Hey bro, can we talk?" ******************** Fluffy and Shade were sitting in their room, arguing over whose turn it was to use the laptop. Both failed to notice the door open and close until a little hand touched them both on the shoulders. Part 8- The End? Shade and fluffy spun around, the laptop crashing to the floor. Spying the person in black shade kicked out catching the figure in the stomach, grunting they stepped back and slowly pulled out the knife hidden in the folds of the fabric. Fluffy picked up a vase and threw it. The figure dropped to their knees hands to their head. Shade and Fluffy approached the injured person. "Time to figure out who you are." Shade said a feral smile on his lips. Shade bent and reached out to take the balaclava off of the small black clad figures head then realized that fluffy was no longer next to him. Looking over his shoulder Shade cried out, Fluffly was being held by another person in black a hunting knife sticking out of his throat. "Now it is your turn," the figure on the floor said thrusting their knife into Shades temple. "Rest in peace." The smaller of the two picked up the laptop and looked at the page Fluffy was on and gagged, it was video of some man pounding into a vagina that looked blue and weeping. Disgusted at the images the figure closed the laptop and slammed it over and over again on to the dead mans head, blood and brain matter splattering everywhere. "Quickly now." the bigger one said "We don't have much time." "I know! Get his clothes off, I will sort out Fluffy!" The smaller said dropping the laptop and pulling Shade over to the bed. The bigger of the two nodded and began undressing Shade as the smaller one walked over and ripped the knife out of Fluffy's neck. "You told me to remind you that after we finish you want to burn those gloves" "Yes yes, I know ick! I will burn everything after touching him!" the smaller said as Fluffy's pants were cut away. "Why am I not surprised he has no jocks on?" "Hurry up you two!" A voice called from in front of the door as the smaller figure took the offending piece of flesh in their hand and cut it away. "You don't have much time, hurry up an finish the job!" "Be quiet! we are going as fast as we can." Replied the big one. "We can always trade places you know." The person outside went silent, The two inside got back to work again. The smaller one picked up what once was Fluffy's dick and walked over to Shade. with one swift movement shoved the penis up the dead mans arse as he half lay naked on the bed. The big one lifted Fluffy from the floor and laughing quietly placed him over Shade propping him up so that his hips were resting against Shades arse. "Let's go." Said the smaller heading out the door.
  9. This is Adventure Time fanfiction. The ship is Simon Petrikov pre-Ice King transformation and Marcelline as a child. It was a bright, chilly day near the beginning of spring. People went about their daily lives in the city, even though the threat of terrible war was ever-looming. They bought hot dogs from carts during lunch hour, huddled around in coffee shops to beat the cold. One person in particular, a brown hair and bespectacled spoft spoken historian of ancient artifacts, left one such coffee shop, huddled in his long wool coat and holding his brown leather briefcase. Simon put his scarf on as he walked, passing the entrance to a large park. But something--no, someone, caught his eye. In a dark purple double breasted coat that went to her knees was a small grey skinned child with short black hair. Her little hands were in hercoat pockets and she stood with her back against a pillar to the gate of the park. She saw him and ran to him. "Hey Mr.P! Did you find anything today?" She smiled at him and hugged his midsection because that was all she could reach. "Oh hello Marcelline. Beautiful day we're having, isn't it? Shouldn't you be in school today?" She shook her head. "It's Saturday, silly! Are you busy? Do you wanna go feed the geese with me?" He smiled at her and offered her his gloved hand. "That sounds lovely." Together they walked into the park, passing people sitting on benches enjoying the air. They made it to the large pond in the middle of the park after walking along a path that cut through the muddy grass. Some patches of it were frozen still, but a few geese were stranded there for the winter. He searched his pockets for crackers, and found a few in a little plastic bag. He handed most of them to Marcelline, keeping only a couple for himself. She broke the crackers in half and tossed them to the geese, who came over immediately. He tossed down his own crackers to them then watched Marcelline throw her crackers to them. He smiled. It warmed his heart to see her so happy, when she was so upset about being lost when he first met her. He put the shoulder strap of his breifcase onto his shoulder and crouched down to be at her level. "I have to go soon but I still have enough time to treat us both to a hot dog, if you would like." She smiled at him. "Thanks, Mr. P. Yeah I haven't eaten since breakfast. I'm really hungry." She took his hand and together they walked to a hot dog stand near the entrance to the park. He bought two hot dogs, one with extra ketchup because he remembered that she liked her hot dogs with it, and walked over to the bench she was sitting at, handing it to her. She smile at him and took it, waiting for him to sit down beside her to start eating. "I'm really glad I met you, Mr.P. If I hadn't met you, I would still be lost in that museum and my daddy wouldn't have found me and it woulda been a great big mess." She took a bite of her hot dog and chewed while thinking of the circumstances that made them meet. Simon was consulting the museum director about a new artifact found, and discovered Marcelline lost and scared in the middle of the museum, totally alone. He calmed her down and together they found her father. When she went to leave with her father, she stopped and declared that they would be friends from that day on, forever. No matter what happened. They would always be friends. After a few minutes of silent eating, Simon threw away his hot dog wrapper. "I have to get going now Marcelline. It was fun being with you at the park. Maybe one day we can come back in the spring when it's warmer so that we'll have ice cream instead of hot dogs again." She looked at him, her smile fading. "But the war would have started by then, Mr.P. We might not even be here. anymore." His heart sank when he heard her speak like that. "I'll be here waiting for you three months from this very moment, at this very spot. We're friends forever and ever no matter what happens, remember? I know you wouldn't keep me waiting." She gave him a hug and he left to continue his day. Three months later, the war had started. Wreckage and despair overflowed through the streets. Most people had evacuated, but not Simon. He had already lost a considerable amount of his mind to the crown, his memories with it, but he never forgot that he promised to meet Marcelline at the park on that day. When he made it to the park, she wasn't there. She was in the middle of the street horribly upset in the middle of wreckage that was once a quiet street just months ago. He ran to a toy store with a broken shopfront window and grabbed the first toy he found. It was a long limbed red teddy bear with blue eyes and a stitched mouth.
  10. Hey guys! I decided to finally write this story which has been in my head for a long time. I got the inspiration for it after I read a book called 'Acheron' by Sherrilyn Kenyon and if anyone has read it, then you'd find that this story is almost like a spin-off or a fan-fic, I've taken names and ideas from them but altered the main plot-line slightly. Anyways, do tell me what you think about it. Without further ado, I'm posting the Prologue right here........... Prologue It was a cloudy day in Kinowu Arazorn and the overcast sky loomed over the mystical world as if impending doom was on the horizon. Empress Kairiya had just given birth to a lovely daughter and she, along with her husband, the Emperor Kuroen, were anxiously awaiting a very important person. With a sudden mist and spark, that person appeared in the room and walked straight to where the baby was lying in her mother's arms. 'So this is the cause of all the alarm,' thought the mysterious guest, staring at the newborn for a long moment. This was none other than one of the most powerful beings alive in the kingdom and she was the Oracle Airen. Her words were unbreakable and she made laws that could never be altered by any other person except for herself and her only son. 'Why did you want to see us, Lady Airen?' asked Kuroen. Airen threw him a glance before turning her attention back to his daughter. 'I felt that something would happen when your little one is born........AH!' exclaimed the lady and her eyes glowed emerald fire. She took the baby in her arms and placed one finger on its tiny forehead. In a few seconds, she began to speak in an ethereal but powerful tone. 'This child is the Harbinger of Kinowu Arazorn's fate and future existence! Many a tragedy will befall this prosperous kingdom and many a life will be ruined! Catera will be the destruction of this peace and her daughter Chimera will follow in her footsteps! This world will be plunged into anarchy and be ravaged by war! Only this little one has the power to save the mystical world and defeat its enemies once and for all! In her hands lie Kinowu Arazorn's destiny!' The Emperor and Empress gasped simultaneously. Airen's eyes stopped glowing and her words had silenced the room, in which her son Alexon and Xiamara the Enchantress bore witness to this shocking prophecy. Kairiya held her baby close and began to cry, Xiamara trying to comfort her. Kuroen was astounded at the thought of his beloved kingdom being destroyed by his arch-enemy, the evil sorceress Catera. Suddenly the doors of the room exploded into pieces and Catera herself entered, followed by Chimera. Xiamara immediately engaged in battling them while Alexon teleported the others to the outside of the Palace. The Emperor clung to his wife and child, desperately trying to think of a way to face the situation. 'What can we do, Lady Airen? How do we keep our daughter away from Catera?' asked Kairiya, burning with desire to protect her child at any cost. Catera appeared close to the group and headed directly for the baby but Airen placed a barrier around them and whispered hurriedly to the Empress. 'Take her to the human world, it's the safest place for her. Remove all her powers and hand her over to a human family to be brought up until the age of twenty. The two of you must return to Kinowu Arazorn without her. That is the only course,' Airen gave her advice and the Empress nodded. Kairiya and Kuroen transformed into plain human figures and entered the human world. The first thing they did was to deactivate every single power of their daughter's. Then, they walked along the cold streets, in the heavily falling snow, hoping to find a good family for their baby girl. One particular house with a large garden around it, which was shining brightly with little lights all over its walls and soft music coming from a well-played piano, caught their attention. They peeped through a window and saw a young couple inside; the wife sitting in an armchair near the fire place and the husband who had been playing the piano giving a big sigh. 'Five years and the doctor tells us that we'll never have children. Oh, how can this happen to us?' said that unlucky man to his wife. 'There is nothing we can do about it, Ikari. If we cannot have any of our own, we'll just have to adopt some. That way, we'll be doing a great service to everyone,' replied Yumi serenely, with a gentle expression on her patient face. The secretly spying couple outside exchanged one mutual look of consent and then knocked on the door. It swung open at once and Yumi stood there, staring half-curiously, half-suspicously at the two strangers, one of them holding a tiny bundle. 'Yes, what can I do for you?' asked the lady. 'May we please come in? We would like to talk to you,' replied Kairiya. ****************
  11. Dunno what to call it haha :3 Yes, I used my name All others are purely fiction. All rights go to Suzanne Collins for the original Hunger Games trilogy. This might not be the full thing yet, l will be going over it when Im done and adding, deleting, editing, etc.. I havent finished Chapter Four but I thought I might post it anyways, same with Five. ---------------------------------------- Prologue When the nation once known as North America lost in the fight against the Capitol, a new revolution was born. The Capitol is the leading city of Panem, where the government take refuge and rule the nation. As punishment of losing the battle, 24 citizens of Panem, 2 from each of the 1-12 districts would fight to the death in a computerized arena, slaying one another, and producing the final survivor, as the victor. The victor would become prosperous, and secure themselves and their family a house in the victors’ village, a village with beautiful homes made especially for the winners of the Games. Each year, the 12 districts would prepare themselves for the reaping, a gathering in the centre of each district where the 2 names of the male and female tributes from their district would be announced to the nation of Panem. The qualifications for being able to be reaped are as follows: The citizen must be 12 years of age or older. There will be a male and female from each district. Citizens must not be victors prior to the event. The citizens also have a choice to volunteer as a tribute in the place of a reaped tribute. When a tribute is reaped, they must go through a vast amount of stages before they enter the arena. They participate in the tribute’s parade, where they are introduced and are displayed to the Capitol, and are interviewed by Caesar Flickerman, and the interview is broadcast live across the nation. They are put through vigorous training sessions where they are to improve their skills prior to entering the arena. Tributes will show their best skill to the game makers in order to show the game makers their strengths and weaknesses, thus helping the game makers develop a highly challenging arena. Every 25 Games there is what we call a Quarter Quell. These Games are the same annual Games, but with a twist. This could be two victors, or two of the victors getting reaped instead, or some other twist. The Hunger Games is the ultimate sacrifice from each district, as their representatives try to make Panem history, and win the Games. There are innocent people dying. There’s poverty in every district. But the Capitol doesn’t care. That is their job. Rule, take over and restrict. Destroy, and kill. Chapter One – The First Reaping: District 1 “Our first tribute from District 1 is...” Effie placed her hand inside the glass ball to her left, and clawed around, about to pick up the slip of paper that would confirm which District 1 citizen that would have to fight to the death in the upcoming annual Games. Effie pulled a single slip of paper out of the bowl and licked her lips, ready to tell the whole of Panem the next family’s child that death was going to claim as its own. The crowd were still and silent, frozen with fear. Who would be next? Would it be them who had to enter the arena this year? “Shaynae McNally!” “What in the name of...” came a voice from behind her. “No! No! My daughter, Shaynae, my daughter! She’s only young! She doesn’t deserve to be slaughtered by strangers! No!” Screams of plead came from Shaynae’s mother as the Peace Keepers arrived at Shaynae’s side, ready to escort her up to the stage next to Effie. “No!” Shaynae’s mother screamed from behind her, clawing through the crowd, trying to reach her child. Why doesn’t she just volunteer? Thought Shaynae as she took the first step up onto the stage. She is so sad just to lose me and she’s screaming and thrashing about but she won’t volunteer. Shaynae grimaced and fought back tears as she walked over to stand next to Effie. “Oh my! Oh my! What a beautiful young lady from 1!” Effie screeched out to the crowd, as she extended her hand around Shaynae’s shoulders. Thanks; shame that it won’t last for too long. Thought Shaynae as tears began to roll down her cheeks. Sobs came from the crowd as Effie asked if there were any volunteers to stand in Shaynae’s place. Nobody screamed out “I volunteer!” or “Me!” or “I will take her place!” and Shaynae felt alone, as if she didn’t know any of these people. This District was her family, the people who she had grown up with since she was born. She was the little cheerful 12 year old girl that the District would throw free bread at, give her flowers and spoil her with rare gifts. Now, these people seemed like strangers to her. The lady at the bakery stood silently in the corner, watching Shaynae with a glum look on her face, showing no sadness, or anger. The elderly man from the trading hall who gave her toffees every day since she was little- despite how poor he was-, stood up the front, staring with big blue eyes at the screen to Shaynae’s left side, where there was a better view of Shaynae’s petite little face and Effie’s big, make-up caked face and her puffy blonde wig. Shaynae felt as if she was stranger to them! Was she just... a fad? Was she nothing to these people of her district? She considered them as family, as her friends. They were all so kind to her, yet not one of them volunteered in her place. She was disgusted. “Hello? The Capitol is calling to Shaynae McNally!” Effie cooed in Shaynae’s ear. Shaynae had been too lost in her sad thoughts that she hadn’t been paying any attention to what Effie was saying! “Huh?” Shaynae replied. “Oh dear!” Effie laughed a fake laugh into the crowd, “Our tribute has hearing problems!” The crowd stayed silent, not feeling the humour. “Ah well,” Effie sighed, “I’m afraid we don’t have all day! It’s time for our next tribute!” Effie once again put her hand into the glass bowl and pulled out a slip of paper. The crowd held their breath. “Nicholas Turner!” Effie screamed in a high-pitched voice. No sooner had Effie read out the name when a loud shout came from the middle of the crowd. “I volunteer! I’ll take his place!” A young girl, about 12 years old, stepped out to the front where everyone could see her. “What was that?” said Effie excitedly as she held out her hand to the girl. “I said I volunteer.” Spoke the girl as she was helped onto the stage. The Peace Keepers stepped away from the terrified boy as the girl stood beside Effie. “And what might your name be, young lady?” spoke Effie through the microphone. “Hayat.” “Hayat what?” “Harrouk. Hayat Harrouk.” “What a beautiful name for a beautiful girl! Now, Hayat, please, do tell us. Why did you volunteer to take the place of this... Nicholas?” “ I...” Hayat muttered. “Oh, sorry!” Effie grabbed the microphone off its stand and held it right in front of Hayat’s face. “I volunteered... because I feel sorry for him.” “We have our first volunteer from District 1 in Panem history! What an outstanding young girl! How old are you, deary?” “Twelve.” “Twelve?” “I just said it didn’t I?” “Wow! This young tribute comes with the good looks and the attitude! What a combination!” “Whatever.” Hayat replied. “So, I now present to you, our two tributes from District 1, Shaynae McNally and Hayat Harrouk!” Effie took both the girls’ arms with each of hers and held them up. “Now, shake hands.” Effie whispered as she let go of the girls’ hands. Shaynae looked at Hayat. Hayat looked at Shaynae. Hayat held out her hand as Shaynae looked up, and they shook hands. They both let go as they turned to the crowd, and plastered a fake smile on their lips. A roar erupted from the crowd and Effie stood on the side of the stage clapping enthusiastically. Everyone in the crowd was happy. But they weren’t happy for Shaynae and Hayat, they were happy for themselves. They had survived this year’s reaping. They were safe. They weren’t the ones who had to risk their lives and kill others in an arena of death. They weren’t the ones who had to leave their family and possibly never return to them. Those people were lucky. Shaynae and Hayat stepped back, and gave each other a sad smile. This was the first step of their journey as tributes in The 76th annual Hunger Games. Chapter Two – The Second Reaping: District 2 “Well, here we happen to be again, dear citizens of Panem!” Effie spoke loudly into the microphone. “We are here in District 2 for the second reaping for the 76th annual Hunger Games! Now, let us begin! So, ladies first, as always!” Effie reached into the glass bowl to her left and pulled out a slip of paper, smiling at the crowd over-enthusiastically. “Oh this is going to be so exciting!” Effie jumped up and down in delight and her heels clacked loudly against the concrete floor of the stage. She unfolded the paper, and there it was. “Laura Burke!” Oh. Laura thought as she stood in the middle of the crowd. All of the sudden it was just her and her family and a wide space around her, where fellow citizens of District 2 had cleared a walkway for the Peace Keepers to arrive and collect Laura. “Out of the way!” called the Peace Keepers as they made their way past a few stray citizens. Mum? Tarlee? Corey? Volunteer for me you cowards! Thought Laura angrily as the Peace Keepers grabbed her around the arms and hoisted her above their shoulders. “Hey! Get your hands off of me! Let go of me you brutes!” Laura thrashed about in the Peace Keepers’ arms and kicked and bucked trying to get out. “I can walk on my own!” Finally they released her, and with a slight adjustment of her reaping dress and a wave of her glossy blonde hair, she made her way towards the stage. From high up above the crowd, she could see her family clearly. Her mother was holding Jaxon tightly in her arms, rocking back and forth, sobbing quietly. Tarlee was hugging Corey and Corey was patting Tarlee on the back in comfort. “Well aren’t you a stunner!” Effie spoke into the microphone. Silence. “So, are you, perhaps, the youngest child? Or let me guess, oldest? No, wait, I-“ “I am the second youngest.” “So she speaks!” “Well duh.” “So, Miss... Laura, how old are you dearest?” Effie asked in a syrupy sweet voice. “I am thirteen.” Laura replied matter-of-factly. “I see.” Effie looked over the crowd, seeming embarrassed by the attitude that she just received. “Time for the next tribute then!” Effie plunged her hand into the second glass ball to her right, shaking up the papers within. Then poof, with a flick of her wrist a single slip of paper flew out of the bowl and floated in front of Effie’s face, left to right in the cool wind. “It’s like magic isn’t it! It took me weeks to perfect it!” Effie squealed as she snatched the paper into her hands. “Here we go! Gosh, I’m so excited!” Laura trembled as she prayed that the name of the male tribute on that paper wasn’t one of her family. Please. Not Jaxon. Not Corey. Please. “Jaxon Burke!” No. Laura thought, and she put her hands over her ears, closed her eyes and began to tremble. “Jaxon Burke!” Effie called out merrily again. God no. Thought Laura and she opened her eyes and there he was. Her little brother Jaxon. His blue eyes were glassy and he looked on the verge of tears. “Jaxon, I’m-“But before she could finish, Jaxon had flung himself towards her, holding onto her arm tightly. “I’m gonna die! I’m gonna die Laura!” Jaxon sobbed into her arm. What am I supposed to tell him? Laura thought sadly. It’s probably true anyway. We are both only young. We don’t stand a chance against all the other tributes who are going to get reaped, especially the Careers. “Oh, how sweet is this! Focus the camera, yes, yes right here, right here! Focus it right on the faces of these beautiful siblings!” Effie called out to the cameramen. “Um...” Effie pulled Jaxon away from Laura’s grasp, or tried. “No! No!” Jaxon screamed through tears. “Jaxon-“ “They’re gonna kill me! They’re gonna kill me! Laura!” Effie stared wide-eyed at Jaxon and his small, trembling body. He was terribly skinny, and oh, so tiny! “Jaxon, go and stand in front of the microphone. They won’t kill you, Jaxon, I promise.” “Laura...” Jaxon obeyed his sister’s request and he slowly walked over to Effie, who was standing next to the microphone. “You are tinier than I thought!” Effie pulled the microphone down and crouched on the floor, holding it to Jaxon’s mouth. “You hold it. I’m getting my expensive new clothes dirty.” She whispered into Jaxon’s ear. Jaxon took hold of the microphone with both his hands and he spoke a few words. “Jaxon Burke. Twelve years old.” Effie let out a squeal of delight. “You, young boy! You must watch the annual Games broadcast in your city square twenty-four seven! You already knew what my questions were going to be!” Jaxon stared at Effie. “Okay then!” Effie snatched the microphone from Jaxon’s grasp and held it up to her own face. “I present to you, Panem, the two sibling tributes from District Two, Laura and Jaxon Burke!” Effie pulled the siblings closer together, and for the first time in twelve years, Laura and Jaxon stepped forward and joined hands in union, for now the journey wasn’t one Laura had to share alone. Jaxon was with her. But should he really be? He gave her confidence, responsibility. Strength. But by saying that, Laura felt selfish. Jaxon wasn’t there for that. He shouldn’t have even been standing next to her. He was supposed to be down there with her mother, comforting her. But he wasn’t. The damn Capitol had pulled his name out of that bowl. His name was in there once! Once! One out of what, about 60? A one in sixty chance of being pulled out of that bowl and his name was pulled out. He shouldn’t be here! Laura thought, annoyed. But the journey wasn’t a journey that Jaxon had to suffer on his own either. He had the confidence from his big sister. She had the feeling that she needed to protect Jaxon. He was to be the one to return home. Nobody was going to touch her little brother. Chapter Three – The Last 7 Reapings By the time Effie had completed all eleven reapings throughout Panem, there were only two months left until the Games were to officially begin. Now was time to prepare for the parade, and the interviews. Then it would be onto training, then skills, then the skill judging. Then it would be the real thing- entering the arena. ***** “Quickly! Quickly!” Effie hurried the tributes onto the train. “Hurry up! We haven’t got all day for you to be slouching around in awe!” “But it’s so amazing!” “It’s so expensive-looking!” “Wow!” Compliments came from every tribute as they made their way inside the train. Smells of delicious food, clean furnishings, Windex, and the sights of shining bench tops, flat screen TV’s, and leather couches made the tributes speechless. “For the last time, hurry up!” Effie called from the corridor. “For god’s sake,” the girl from three sighed, “Not our fault they bet us in the war and starve us of everything, not just food.” Most of the tributes nodded their heads in agreement and hurried thought the corridor, trying to keep up with Effie’s fast pace. “All these doors here are where you will be staying! The doors opposite from each other are the rooms the two from each district will stay in! For example-“ Effie opened the door of one of the rooms. The tributes closest to Effie peeped their heads through the door to catch a glimpse of where their home would be for the next few months. “Okay, everyone out here! Out here! I’ll show you all to your rooms and you can have a bit of a settle before dinner is served!” Effie walked back down to the start of the corridor and stood in front of the first pair of doors. “District One, Shaynae McNally and Hayat Harrouk! Pick a room- they’re both identical so don’t fret!” The two tributes from one walked into their rooms and sighs of comfort were immediately heard just before Effie closed their doors. “Two, Laura Burke and Jaxon Burke!” Laura and Jaxon groaned and slumbered into their rooms, immediately closing the doors behind them. “Ah,” sighed Effie. “Kids these days... full of attitude...” The remaining tributes forced themselves to remain quiet. “District three, Bree Baddawi and Lucas Chrysanthou!” “Catch ya later sis’!” Lucas called from his room and the tributes from three closed their doors. “District four! Shaqkahn Taurima and Alex Mughal!” Without a glance at each other, Shaqkahn and Alex both made their way inside their rooms, and quick as a flash closed their doors. “District number five! Manav Shrivastav and Jai James!” “Talk later Manav!” Jai raised his hand for a high-five and Manav laughed, slapping Jai’s hand and walking down the corridor to their rooms. “Six! Wesley Poto and Phoebe Nguyen!” “See you soon Wesley!” Phoebe called sadly from the back of the clan, and Wesley made his way over to Phoebe, gave her a bear hug, then walked into his room, Phoebe following close behind him as she turned into her room. “This is dragging out forever!” Effie sighed, discontent. “District seven! Christopher Brettargh and Emma Fuller!” The two tributes didn’t mutter as much as a goodbye, and they walked into their rooms, closing the doors behind them. Effie stared with an odd look on her face. “Lastly, eight! Megan James and Dean Smith!” “Later.” Dean muttered and walked into his room. “Yeah, bye.” Megan turned into her room. ***** That night, and for the next few days, the tributes would have time to rest. Then, the real challenges would begin. The interviews were only in a week, and the tributes knew that this precious time they had to themselves could be to their advantage. They could discuss strategy, alliances. They would meet with their District victor mentors, and have time to learn strategies from not only them, but from each other. They had to eat well too, with training coming up and the skills test, they would need to carefully plan what they eat. But the food wasn’t the only problem. The Capitol was everywhere. The whole of Panem was watching the tributes every step of the way. When they slept, eat, drank, talked, Panem would always be there watching. However, was this really that big of a problem? If the tributes were to get into trouble with their social status, would that affect them in the Games? Chapter Four – Making an Impression It had come, the night of the parade. Each of the tributes was uniquely dressed in costumes relating to their district. Bree and Lucas, burning coals in fire, made their way over to the underground preparation area. “This is it guys!” Cinna came beaming up to Bree and Lucas, holding a tube of blue flame. “This is synthetic fire,” Cinna explained. “When I hold this to your suits, you will go up in flames, giving the illusion that you are coals burning.” “That sounds awesome!” Lucas exclaimed with delight. Bree smiled, “Yeah! Let’s do this!” Cinna held the blue tube of flame in front of Bree and Lucas and removed the cap. Blue flames flickered at the top, wanting to clutch onto the suits and burn with all their might. “This is gonna look spectacular.” Then poof, in an instant Cinna had touched the tip of the tube onto Bree’s suit, and she was covered in flames. The fire licked at her face, not hot, but not cold. Then when Bree looked over at Lucas, she was amazed. He looked awesome! The flames covered both of them and made the black sequins on their suits shine, making it look like they were actually burning! “You ready guys?” Cinna asked as the District two chariot pulled up beside them. “Well don’t you two look...” Haymitch looked at Bree and Lucas from head to toe. “Smoking hot.” Haymitch gave a chuckle as he stood next to Bree, poking at the synthetic flame burning on her right shoulder. “Good luck sweetheart.” Bree nodded and turned, following Lucas as Cinna led them both down the end of the hall, where their chariot was waiting for them. Cinna helped Bree up onto the chariot, and Bree was in shock. From the chariot she could see right to the other end of the road, where the District One and Two chariots were already making their way along. They needed to be quicker. Chapter Five – Silence and Secrecy Before they knew it, the days of resting had passed, and it was time for the tributes to discuss their final strategies. ***** “Just keep the most important things to yourself.” A drunken Haymitch murmured into the tributes from twelve, Bree and Lucas’ ears. “So basically just don’t answer their questions at all?” Bree whispered. “Everything’s important sweetheart. Every glance, every answer. You need to make the best impression you can, which will win you sponsors, and that,” Haymitch waved his glass of whisky around. “That’s what you need. If you don’t find any food in the Games, then you’ll rely on Sponsors to send you care packages.” “Okay, we understand Haymitch.” Lucas finally spoke up. “Get back to your rooms then, before The Capitol bust us for being up here.” “I thought it was safe you idiot Haymitch!” Bree hissed as she began to walk towards the door that would lead her down from the rooftop. “It is. There are so many wind chimes up here that you can’t hear a thing. The sound is almost deafening. They can’t hear you, but they can see you just fine.” Haymitch winked and turned his back to the tributes who scowled as they went back inside. -------------------------- And yes, I know that the synthetic fire, and Cinna were for 12, and other stuff. I have changed it all a bit, and also,there are only 8 districts in this story because there will be 24 in the arena.... but youll find that out later
  12. Here is a story I wrote a while back. I hope you enjoy and feel free to tell me what you think. Constructive criticism is appreciated. Diet Cola The night’s sky hung low over the wet city. The walls of the buildings were sweating and the streets slid from under foot. Lights reflected off the thick, low hanging clouds giving everything an orange hue. The shade was sickening and only added to the exhaustion that coiled its lines around Cola’s body. Old Town was a part of the city full of cramped, dark alleys to disappear down. This one wasn’t any different from any other. Cola leaned his back against the cold wall of a building and rested his hands on his knees; his breathing slowly came under control. The pounding in his chest gave way to a smoother rhythm, but his nerves continued to twitch at an uncontrollable rate. His legs shook and weakened. He wasn’t used to running like that any more, a few blocks he could manage, but once the distance started to get over a mile his stamina began to wane. The smells of piss and garbage reminded him of how far he’d fallen in his life. Three years was all it took for Cola to degrade from a mildly successful small business owner to a homeless crook. A few more blocks were all Cola had left to travel to find shelter and safety, but his fatigue was making it difficult. When his conviction returned he pealed his back away from the wall and trudged thigh deep in hunger out of the cramped alley, and into the claustrophobic streets. Cola crossed an intersection at the short side of a long block and turned down an identical alley to the one he just left. Two thirds of the way down the alley, past a half full dumpster; Cola entered a building through a window with a broken latch. Ten years ago, or so, the building had been a parts factory of some sort, but cheaper labor over seas had make the sight the relic of a forgotten moment in prosperity and a financial liability. Now the building stood relatively empty. Threaded pegs littered the floor where conveyor belts and machines were once anchored. Cola sometimes found himself wishing he had a tool of some sort to remove them in moments like this, when it was dark and shadows created by dim light coming through the dirty windows hid the bolts in the shadows. Cola had been living there for around six months and was the most recent of the buildings seven tenants. Of the seven, Papa Smurf was the only one home when Cola returned. Pap Smurf has been there the longest and rarely left the building after dark. As the buildings elder, he occupied the manager’s office at the top of a set of stairs in the corner. A single candle stood in one of the windows of the office that overlooked the sparse floor of the factory. A single candle meant that Papa Smurf was home, but sleeping. Cola’s eyes lingered amongst the shadows for a moment and adjusted to the darkness. He looked back up to the candle and wished Papa Smurf was awake, he wanted to talk to him for a while, but it was too late. Cola turned to head to his room as he scanned the rest of the factory for confirmation of its vacancy. Bob’s locker-room door was closed and the gap under the door was as dark as everything else. The same could be said about Dora’s supply office, Jeffanie’s mechanic shop (Jeff and Stephanie were a couple whose marriage actually survived their financial woes), and Kidd’s corner. Cola’s spot was as far away from everyone else as possible, not because he didn’t function well with the others, but because he was overly cautious when he first started staying in the factory and grew accustomed to his space. It was a former janitor’s closet tucked away on the far side of the factory's expansive open floor. The closet was barely large enough for the single, twin mattress he’s found abandoned outside an apartment building half way across town and the few things he managed to save from his life. Compared to most closets of any sort it was large, but as a living space, it was barely adequate. The door swung inward when he opened it and lodged itself against the side of the mattress. Considering there were no windows in it, he stepped out of his closet and back into the factory so he could use the dim light that came in from the window over his shoulder. He was wearing old cargo pants, every pocket was filled to the stitches, and pulled out an unopened pack of four lighters. Cola pulled the plastic away from the cardboard back and removed a blue lighter. He lit the lighter and entered the black void that was his living space before closing the door on the factory. To his left was a small end table that he found somewhere. Using the already burning lighter he lit a set of three candles that stood next to a stack of his favorite books and a homemade DVD that he hadn’t been able to watch in a few years. Cola was exhausted to the extent that his brain no longer thought; he just stared blankly at the cave that was now his home. The glow from the candles’ light made the walls glow is the same shade as the streets outside. When he first moved into the factory he used to make up stories about the people who had lived there before. Such wandering led him to many conclusions that kept him up at night. At one point someone with a child had occupied his present dwelling. The walls were covered in adolescent hieroglyphs that ended five feet above the floor. On nights like this his mood toward his living condition hit bottom like a meal after a few days of bad luck. Once upon a time Coal was the optimist, he used to always land on his feet, but now his smiles came fewer and further between. He was ready for sleep; he needed sleep. He didn’t need it just because of his exhaustion, but because it was the only place he was allowed to remember the past without feeling the burden of the present. Cola began emptying his pocket of the hoard he collected when he and Kidd performed their run out. Consistent with the agreement they had come to, Cola began dividing up the goods. From what he was able to grab and stuff in his pockets, minus everything in his hands he dropped while the clerk was chasing him; they would each get two lighters, five candy bars, a toothbrush, two bars of soap, chap stick, and under arm deodorant. The excess from the odd numbered items he set aside to give to Bob for shower privileges and what was his he stuck in the hole that used to be the end table’s drawer. Everything that was Kidd’s he left on the table top. Normally, he would have taken off his shoes and stuffed his two extra pairs of socks in them to keep anything from crawling inside, but he was too exhausted to bother. He shuffled across the floor, stumbling as he tripped over one of the roach motels he had stuck to the floor surrounding his bed. Cola’s legs were still feeling the affects of the thief’s marathon; it was a slow squat that turned into a crawl leading to his pillow. The pillow was and old, strapless backpack stuffed with newspaper and his blanket was given to him at the neighborhood shelter. Neither met their purpose that night. He woke the next day in a black cave and relit the candles on the table with the same blue lighter he had used before. The booty he left for Kidd was gone and replaced with his half of what Kidd got away with, which mostly consisted random, somewhat useless things. After falling asleep without blowing out the candles, they were surprisingly only a quarter of the way burnt. Kidd must’ve returned shortly after him and blown them out after the exchange. He grabbed a can of overpriced chicken soup from the table top and cranked away at it with the opener on his pocket knife. It was eaten cold with an overused, plastic spoon he got from a fast food joint. Cola sat at the edge of his mattress mindlessly eating and staring off into nothingness. Nothing had changed since last night, not his moon and definitely not his situation. If only one thing would change, one minor shift of luck and it could make the difference between a new start and another year of homeless thievery. As positive as his thoughts might sound, they only served to deepen his somber mood. All they were was reminders of chances that he no longer believed would come. Cola was still hungry. He wanted something to eat that didn’t consist mostly of broth. The sunlight from outside filtered into the factory through the old, dirty windows; Cola found himself wishing he’d stolen sunglasses as he stepped from inside his hole. Judging by the way the light came in, Cola could tell that it was sometime between breakfast and lunch at the shelter. If he wanted something hot now he would have to get it someplace else. Back in the janitor’s closet, in the side pouch of his makeshift pillow, was two dollar bills and little over four bucks in change. It was just enough for two hot dogs from a street vender. Even though there were various venders that made camp closer to the factory, Cola always made his way to the other side of the park to see the pointy eared Spock who sometime took pity on him with minor handouts and condiment packets. His legs were slightly sore from the night before, but his want of hot food pushed them forward. It took Cola almost a half hour to make it to the corner Spock usually occupied, a walk that regularly took half the time. Two hog dogs and a free bag of plain chips was a start to a good day by Cola’s standards. He left Spock’s cart with a smile that almost cracked his face and found a stoop to sit on. Spock’s hot dog cart was still within view from where he sat. Cola ate his hot dogs and chips slowly and deliberately, savoring every last bite and finding bliss in the warmth as it traveled through and reenergized his body. Contently, Cola sat there watching the city move. People in all forms of dress passed on the side walk in front of him as the traffic crawled along the street. Then luck fell at his feet with a barely audible pat. Between his warn and nearly tread-less, white sneakers was a wallet. In disbelief, Cola leaned over slowly and picked up the wallet. He treated it like and ancient artifact that was brittle and would fall apart if he handled it otherwise. Fifty, one hundred, two hundred, three hundred, six hundred; eight hundred fifty-six was all now his. The moment he had been wishing for had finally come. Finally, something good had happened to Cola after so much time filled with back luck and setbacks. The smile that cracked his face now shattered him from ear to ear. Eight hundred fifty-six dollars could get him a place for a month with more than cold water and a set of clothes nice enough to find a job in; if Cola had his own sound track, the choir would be singing. Cola looked around to see if anyone noticed him pick it up. One thing that he learned during his time on the street was that it's not that anyone didn’t notice him, but that they didn’t want to acknowledge that they noticed him. But, there was a voice. At first he didn’t want to hear it, but he couldn’t help but comprehend the words that the voice spoke. “I don’t believe this! You have got to be kidding me.” Cola looked to his right to see a man standing in front of Spock’s hot dog cart digging through his pockets franticly. Standing behind the man, not quite understanding what was going on, was a young boy no older than six holding two hot dogs. At that moment Cola remembered the homemade DVD on his nightstand in the janitor's closet; little, fat fingers curled around one of his, smiles all over the place, his love holding their child with the same park he had just passed through in the background. “We’re gonna have to give the hot dogs back son. Daddy lost his wallet.” The child slowly broke into tears as his father took the hot dogs from his hands and passed them back to Spock. “Ain’t this just a bitch,” he said to Spock in a tone Cola was too familiar with, “just when I though my luck had turned and I was going to be able to pay by back rent.” The person Cola was before and who he is now began fighting in the back of his mind. The change in his luck he had been hoping for would have to come at the expense of someone else, maybe someone who actually needed it more than he did. “Excuse me," Cola said, "but you dropped this.”
  13. This is just a short story I have to compose for my homework... and my teacher is going to get it published (not distributed) like printed and stuff and I want feedback! ---------------------- Even if I never escape this place, I’m not going to change, thought Heather as she rolled a piece of ceiling plaster between her fingers. The pale grey walls of the orphanage surrounded her in her corner. The counsellor sat at her desk, watching Heather in her corner, rolling the ceiling plaster in her fingers, writing down notes on her clipboard. Heather could feel eyes staring at her. She glanced up and saw the counsellor staring at her with a warm, kind smile. Heather didn’t return the smile. She glumly looked at the counsellor for a few seconds, and then went back to rolling her ceiling plaster. ‘Why don’t you talk to me, Heather? I’m here to help you. I’m your friend.’ The counsellor’s voice calmly spoke. Heather stopped rolling her plaster in between her fingers and sat, silent. ‘Get lost, lady. You aren’t my friend. Don’t act like you care about an orphan. You have sat at that desk and talked to many others like me.’ Heather replied. ‘Heather-’ began the counsellor. ‘No.’ Heather interrupted her halfway. ‘You can spend this whole afternoon sitting there and writing down notes about me like I am an animal in an exhibition. See if I care. I am not going to tell a mere stranger all about myself.’ Heather glared at the counsellor. The counsellor wrote down some words on her clipboard, and then flipped the page, to reveal a nice, clean white piece of paper. ‘If you think you can get me to fill up an entire piece of A4 paper with my thoughts then you really must be as stupid as I assumed.' Heather retorted, throwing the ceiling plaster across the carpet. 'I think maybe that's enough for today, don't you think?' murmured the counsellor as she picked up her papers. 'Meh.' was all that came out of Heather's mouth. Well I didn't talk anyway, Heather thought for a moment before the counsellor opened the door to allow her out. Heather stood up and walked out the door, not once looking back to see the face of her counsellor. The orphanage's corridors were long, dull and boring, and Heather hated them. She had lost count of the number of times she had walked through them. The paintings on the walls were paintings that had been painted by the kids at the orphanage themselves.
  14. Here is a story I wrote a while back. I have several other short stories I plan to share and a science fiction novel I've been sitting on that I might post in installments depending on the responses I get to my short stories. I hope you enjoy and feel free to tell me what you think. Constructive criticism is appreciated. In the Corner The Tornado's power tore across the open space. From the bottom up, the Tornado was a twisting spiral of furry. His left foot hit the mat and the rotation travelled through his heal, and past his knee. If the force could have its own sound effect, it would snap by the time it reached Tornado's hip, and the wind would howl as it whipped around his torso. Tornado's experience tricked his younger opponent into dancing himself cornered. Sunday's punch is now gyrating into the youngster's right side. Tornado's left drilled its way through the younger, taller opponent and buried the pain in his liver. Brian "The Tornado" Myers had been planting the seeds for this combination for the last three rounds and now that he finally had his opponent cornered, he was going to deliver the message. "I'm not washed up!" Joe Hernandez is an "up-and-comer" expected to be the "next-best-thing" since turning pro; bull shit. After compiling seven "impressive victories" (whatever, a bunch scrubs), with zero losses and seven knockouts, Hernandez is looking to use the recently unretired Tornado as a stepping stone for his resume on his path to contention. But, at this moment, the "old dog" (fucking promoters) is looking to teach the youngster the differences between experience and talent, and between power and speed. Tornado felt Hernandez's right side crumble, and could sense his head come down. Like four times earlier in the bout, Tornado followed up the left with a right hook to the head. And, like the last two times, Hernandez's hands went up to guard his temples. Hernandez took the right hook through his guard despite the pain in his right side. He braces himself again for the hook he's sure will come from the left, like it had in the earlier rounds, but this time the left isn't a hook. Tornado's left flew up from below like he was throwing the switch on Frankenstein's monster and squeezed its way between the elbows. Hernandez's head popped up like an empty pez dispenser, and, if seen from a certain angle, the snap of the punch caused a mist of sweat to shine like a halo in the glow from the bright lights above. Seven matches is more than enough information to study for Tornado to come up with a pre-match strategy, but there's something to Hernandez that can't be seen on film. Because of the combination of his speedy footwork, his technique, and uncanny foresight; Hernandez has practically gone untouched until now. What Tornado is now learning is about the kid's toughness. Hernandez tightens up quickly and absorbs the following combination from The Tornado. A powerful one-two against Hernandez's guard blew away the fog lingering from the uppercut and brought Hernandez back into the pace of the fight. Tornado can still see the fire in Hernandez's eyes burning from behind his guard. He didn't expect the youngster to be able to absorb his power as well as he has, but nothing ever truly surprises Tornado anymore. After twelve years as a pro and one and a half as a second in the corner, before coming out of retirement, Tornado had seen just about everything. The Tornado readies to unleash his full weight on the kid. He took his legs away with blows to the body in the earlier rounds, now it's time to start aiming for the victory. He widens his stance and drops his hips, loaded like a spring ready to uncoil a rapid succession of blows. Once again, the power from his legs boils up and across his back as it begins to wind up. Every hour and minute, and second of training snapped into motion a rage of explosive power. Tornado's right hook howled through the thick air like a wolf through the trees of a dense forest. Hernandez is not defenseless though, nor is he content to sit back and hide behind his guard. He steps out of the corner screaming with an uppercut to counter Tornado's hook. Hernandez's speed is enough to catch up to Tornado's, but it's not fast enough to beat him to the punch. They trade off in the corner to the sound of the bell and the end of a grueling eighth round. The uppercut to Tornado's chin is twice as fierce as all of Hernandez's punches from the previous rounds combined, as such, so is the impact of Tornado's hook across Hernandez's left cheek. The full weight and power of both fighters swinging and putting their bodies behind the force of those swings, multiplied the forces of the impacts. Hernandez's head swung to his right. Tornado's head popped up just like Hernandez's had second's before. At this point, the fight had officially gone beyond technique or speed or power, these two punches lit a fire in both fighters that will rage across the ring for the coming rounds. Both fighters, neither hearing the bell, snapped back into their fighting stances and began to recoil for another exchange of blows. The eruption of the crowd couldn't be heard in the ears of either fighter. They are the only two people on the face of the earth at the moment and nothing but an act of God is going to stop them. Just then, a glaring whiteness appeared before the two of them. "Break! That's the bell. Back to your corners." Both boxers stood there, glaring at each other over the ref's shoulder. The old pro that he is, Tornado turns his back on Hernandez and the ref to make his way toward his corner. Hernandez is not as composed though, frustrated after having been cornered, he slams the butt of his glove across the top rope of the ring and slowly walks to where his second waits for him; not once taking his eyes off Tornado's expansive back. "Brian, sit down," I say to him as he refuses to take the stool. "That was a nasty upper, sit down and concentrate on recovering your breathing." "I'm good bro," he says after I pull his mouth piece out and before I give him a squirt of water. He spits the water into a funnel that has a tube going to a bucket below the ring. The spit is a dull pink color from the mixture of blood that's intermingled with the saliva and water. The inside of his mouth is torn up from the blows he's taken throughout the match. "I don't wanna sit. I might not get back up if I sit." I move to the side so the cut man, our father, can get in the ring to work on the swelling around his eyes. Brian and I are both second generation boxers, but neither I nor our father ever though Brian would have the success he is currently facing when he came out of retirement. Our father isn't much of an athlete and much less of a boxer, but his knowledge of the sport and his ability to teach make him the perfect trainer for young talent. Its funny when you look at how things turned out between us, Brian and I that is, the two sons of one of the best trainers in pro-boxing today, George T. Myers. Fortunately for me, as I used to think, the two things I inherited from my father were the two things I wanted the most from him; his name and his boxing knowledge. As for my athleticism, that was the biggest difference between my older brother and me, I took after our mother and he took after our father. You should have seen me in the ring. The old man used to call me a natural, and once he beat every bit of boxing into me, I was the most feared contending out there. By the time I became number one, I had racked up an undefeated record of twelve victories with nine knockouts. And, I was geared up for my first title match. My brother on the other hand, was the mirror image of my father in his prime; talent level and all. As far as anyone could tell, his carrier was headed in the exact direction our father's went, to the corner. Brian retired from fighting with a record of fifteen wins, seven losses, and fourteen knockouts. Not a bad record for someone without a lick of athletic talent. But, what Brian lacked in speed and natural ability, he more than made up for with power, tenacity, and knowledge. And, now that Brian's returned to the ring after my retirement, his strengths more than out weight his faults. "Seconds out," is yelled across the expanse of the blood and sweat soaked mat. Tornado looked across the vast emptiness between him and Hernandez, who is hopping along in his corner, surely a show of defiance. Hernandez doesn't want Tornado to know he's still hurting from the exchange at the end of the last round. Tornado knows better though, he knows that exchange isn't the only source of the pain Hernandez is feeling. After taking five of Tornado's bests shots, five of his Sunday's best, Tornado knows Hernandez's side must be killing him. The liver-blows were more than just a set up for a combination. They were seeds planted in the mat beneath his legs. These seeds would grow into weeds and entangle Hernandez's legs in sloth. Tornado had been working at taking away his speed the entire match by repeated blows to the body. Though Hernandez certainly is tough, the dancing in the corner is a show. He thinks he's fooling Tornado into thinking that he's not damaged. Hernandez burst from his corner like a freight train from a dork tunnel. Tornado was waiting for this. Frustration bled cracks across Hernandez's face. Tornado knows this is about to turn into a brawl, he knows that he had taken away most of Hernandez's lateral mobility. Tornado quickly moved out of his corner and met Hernandez in the center of the ring. Like before the bell rang in the last round, he widens his base and sinks his hips in preparation for a hitting match. Regardless of how many rounds he has left in the match, Tornado knows he can't let it go to a decision. For every punch that he lands Hernandez lands two. The numbers and the score are on his side, but Tornado's power is undeniable. No matter how many punches he takes, he knows that his are hurting more. Guarding and dodging have become a thing of the past, reserved for the luxury of the earlier rounds; and, if they did happen, were pure signs of training and muscle memory. The two men stand there, in the center of the ring, face to face without budging. The roar of the crowd is deafening, but neither fighters notice. There are only two people in their world and they are holding each other up with tenacity. For the entire round they trade off. Hernandez lands a beautiful one-two only to have the outside of his left eye split by another one of Tornado's vicious right hooks. He lands another one-two to the crown of Tornado's head only to receive another left to the body in return. Neither man backs down till the bell rings signaling the end of the ninth round. Once again, the ref has to dive between the two pugilists in order to stop the round. My older brother came out of retirement just to avenge my loss to the present champion, who, including this match, is only two victories away. As I stand over him and watch our father tend to the swelling around his eyes, eyes that are so swollen I wonder if he can even see, I am amazed at my brother's courage. "Jr." I hear faintly. I am in awe at my brother's guts. My left eye, blinded by an illegal elbow, aches at the sight of my brother’s condition. I can hear breath coming out in wheezing gasps, a sign of an obvious broken rib or two, but he does not complain. "Jr.!" I hear our father yell out to me. "Yeah?" "Are you going to give your brother some of that water or are you going to stand there watching him suffer?' Brian is standing just like before. He's still afraid to sit down. I pull his mouthpiece out and squirt the water into his mouth. I squeeze the bottle too forcefully though and squirt the water directly to the back of his throat. It causes him to choke for a moment and he gags and coughs to clear the water. "Jesus Christ, son. What the hell's wrong with you? You trying to kill him?" The anger etched across our father's face bores a whole in my pride. "No...it's ok..." Brian manages between gasps. "I was... fading... I needed that." "Don't talk." Father yells, still angry at me, "concentrate on catching your breath. You're doing fine just keep it up. His speed is not as fast and his punches look like they've lost something. Your power's getting to him. Don't let up for an instant. He's a tough bastard, but you’re tougher. Remember that." Brian bobbed his head in acknowledgement. The words coming from our father carried more weight than just their meaning. They were full of pride. When the doctors told me that the sight in my eye might never return, which it didn't, my brother took it the hardest. Because of a freak accident, our father couldn't be ringside during my title fight. I was the natural expected to take the belt from the champ in his third defense. Brian was my second for that match and ever sense, regretted not throwing the towel, and allowing me to continue knowing I couldn't see out of it and that the champ was going to continue to work it over. He was afraid of how I might react after the match, and he was right. I never blamed Brian for not throwing the towel; the fact of the matter is I probably would have never forgiven him if he had; even if it had saved the vision in my eye. "Second out." I stuffed the mouthpiece back in Brian's mouth and began to make my exit from the ring. Before I could make it through the ropes I felt Brian's gloved hand grab my arm. He gave me a nod and his eyes spoke all the words his lips couldn't, "Don't worry bro, I'm fine. This is only a stepping stone to our goal. I didn't move up a weight class just to lose here, I'm gonna win. " "Second out." This time the warning was meant for me specifically.
  15. Preface This is a small sample of the full story that I'm still writing based on the fantasy/fairy tale story I wrote for the random contest. This is actually part of the original story I had written for the contest, but I was at about 1500 words and still hadn't finished the first fight yet so I decided to switch story-telling style and take on a more traditional fairy tale voice. This version is much more detailed and takes a god-like perspective that follows Diarai the dragon rather than the complete 3rd person narrator I used in the fairy tale telling of the story. I really liked what I had written for this, and I hope to be able to finish telling the entire story in this voice. I'm actually well ahead of what I'm giving you, but I don't want to feel pressure to release what I write immediately so I'm only giving a bit at a time. The rest of the story will come in later posts. The Storm of Fire In the hundreds of years Diarai had lived, never had he been more vexed by a single knight than he was now. Unlike knights in the past who foolishly attempted to fight Diarai in cumbersome suits of armor that could easily be melted or broken, this knight fought with only light boiled leather, a small steel cap, and a strong round shield. Armor would do nothing against Diarai’s claws or fiery breath, and Diarai had to give this man some respect for his shrewd choice to dodge such attacks rather than try to defend against them. However, speed would not be enough to best a dragon. As the knight danced away from Diarai’s claws, his foot landed on a crack in the cave floor, and he lost his footing. Spotting the opportunity, Diarai swiftly swung his tail intending to strike off the man’s head, but the knight fell to the ground and rolled out of the way allowing the deadly strike to pass above him. He then scrambled behind a low, jagged rock near the cave wall as a puff of Diarai’s flames scorched the place where he had fallen. However, now the knight was cornered. That small rock could not cover the knight from a full blast of Diarai’s fire. Diarai drew in air and prepared a white hot blast meant to melt the rock and the knight hiding behind it. However, before Diarai was finished, a thin green streak shot up from behind the rock where the knight was hiding. The enchanted arrow exploded on the cave ceiling, striking a large stalactite hanging above Diarai.
  16. This fornight's challenge must meet 2 criteria. First, head to the seventh sanctum to the Magitech Generator and pick the phenomena catagory and choose one you like. This is going to be the center piece of your story. What the object is exactly is going to be entirely up to you, but your story must revolve around it. Next is again your characters. You have to choose 2 of 5 options, these will be your main two characters. The sickly gigolo. The narrow-minded heroine. The aged, obedient cleric who is considered the worst in his/her profession. The jailer needing a friend. The tough, whiny bartender. BONUS If you can find a way to meet one of the following criteria you qualify for bonus points! A character is inebriated throughout most of the story. A Plot relevant Romance Occurs A complete short story
  17. Prologue: The Legatus Power Armor, the invention that changed the world, in more ways than imaginable. From the depths of the ocean to the vacumm of space these miraculous machines could be found everywhere. Due to their excellent protection, their amazing adaptability and their relative ease of use power armor had spread throughtout the world faster than wildfire. Then someone had an idea, one bright little flicker of thought that set things in motion he couldnt possible have thought would, or could happen. Make them a sport. Again the world changed and the Power Armor World Games were born, with its posterchild the PAXT, Power Armor Xtreme Tournament. And so the sport was born, all the violence anyone could need just without the unwanted side affect of death, at least not often. The "athletes" came from all walks of life but they all sought the same thing, fame and glory. Most never attained this goal, but some occasionally captured the hearts of the crowd, the media and its seems the very heavens bowed down before them. One of these men was Lambert Collins or, as the world knew him, the Legatus... _____ "This is a God damn mess! How the hell did it come to this!" screams an unknown figure in the shadows, directing his rage to a young man dressed in a suit, a tailored pinstripe coupled by a white shirt and black tie. The young man didnt seem to flinch at this abrupt outburst and was breathing in a deliberate manner. "You see, sir, the public has grown accustomed to them," replied the man in a low tone, as if trying not to wake someone,"we can't get rid of them now." "Buu...Hmmm... Your right as always, but you've missed out one way we can go about this..." "And that is, sir?" "Hmpf! We split them up, we use the Reapers," snorted the figure in the darkness. "Right away sir..." _____ >PAXT ARENA LAS VEGAS >PAXT FINAL 2119, DEC 14, 23:45 |LEGIO>VS<PAX REAPERS| The Legatus surveyed this melee before him. They flanked us! How the hell did they do that! I know this god forsaken arena like the back of my hand! The battle infront of him was a mess. His men's formation had broken within minutes of the battle, both fireteams being left aimless in the confusion. I have to sort this out! Lambert drew his blade, a small sword similar to the old Roman gladius, and selected anti personnel missiles on his interior HUD. Running down the side of the small hill he had been perched upon he aimed at a pair of targets, two Reapers with black patchy armor that made them resemble scarecrows, and fired. Two small missiles, 30 cm long each, launched from a small, concealed launcher on his shoulder, and flew with a howling pitch into the air. About a second later another Reaper was closing in on Lamberts position at a steady pace, in the same way a bear would chase a deer. This Reaper had a more hulking profile and was armed with a large hammer that could easily cave in a mans skull. Lambert raised his blade in the air and let out a menacing bellow. A moment later the AP missiles came howling out of the night and hit there respective targets, who both went hurtling into the night. The brute making his way towards Lambert was momentarily distracted. You're mine! Lambert leaped the remaining distance between them and landed on the Reapers chest, feet first. With a swift sweep of the sword he went to remove the Reaper's throat, but as with all close range weapons in the World Games, it passed straight throught leaving no trace, other than a limp body. The Legatus straightend up as he checked the battle's progress on his HUD. The Reapers progress bar went down a little, while the Legio's went up. But it wasn't enough. We've lost this one, and in the final too... He turned towards his remaining troops and thought to himself, We be aswel go out fighting, as he charged into the fray, firing off everything he had left and roaring all the way...
  18. Part 1 Lucas ran through the streets, barely avoiding running into a man in a business suit. People glanced over as he passed by at high speeds, undoubtedly wondering why he was running. Their questions were soon answered as a group of men soon followed, running after him. From what they were wearing, the men looked like members of a street gang. Lucas narrowly dodged another person, not turning back as they swore loudly at him. He focused on running and getting away, not paying attention to his surroundings. Breathing heavily, he turned a corner onto a side street, using his hand to block the glare of the setting sun off of the glass panels on the building that lined the sides of the street. From the sounds of the heavy footsteps behind him, Lucas could tell that the men were catching up. Desperately, he dodged into an alley, hoping that the small space would slow his pursuers down. As he ran through the alley, his mind inadvertently played back the incidents leading to the chase. For most of his live, Lucas had been as jailer; working at the city prison. He started out watching over the main block with several other jailers, but moved on later to a smaller cell block in one of the dark corners of the prison. It was in those poorly lit, foul smelling confines that the incident occurred. While letting out the prisoners for mealtime, a group suddenly jumped out and began beating him, surrounding him from all sides. They pounded him with large swooping blows, leaving him defenseless and quickly rendering him a bloody mess. The memory of the incident still made him cringe. No matter what he had tried, he couldn’t avoid the blows that they rained down on him. Through his desperation and pain, he came to realize that the other jailers were doing nothing to stop the prisoners. They stood by as they always did, ignoring him. From what he heard, they only stepped in after he had gone unconscious. The fact that nobody came to help him sooner pained him almost as much as his injuries. He recalled waking up in a hospital room with broken ribs and a badly smashed face. It was in that same room that he was told that he had been fired from the prison. The reason that they gave him was that he was unable to control the prisoners and would therefore no longer be needed. Lover the year that had passed since then, Lucas had still not found a new job. What he did find, though, were enemies. The friends of prisoners that he had watched over began to try to take revenge on him. His current predicament was a result of this. Quickly snapping his mind back to running, Lucas continued along as fast as he could. Looking around briefly, he noticed that the chase had taken him to the industrial section of the city. Large pipes entwined with the walls of the metallic buildings that surrounded him, lit with the dull orange or the setting sun. In the distance, several towers spewed gray smoke into the sky. As Lucas looked around, he came to realize that he was no longer being chased. With cautious relief, he came to a jogging stop, leaning over so he could catch his breath. He was sweating profusely, causing wet spots on his shirt. While he tried to catch his breath, Lucas took a closer look at his surroundings. He hoped that it was possible to get back to his apartment from his current location, although he had no idea how he would get there. Suddenly, a strange object caught his eye. It was sitting sideways against the chainlink fence across the alley from him. He walked over, picking it up to take a closer look at it. It was an egg shaped metal object with several ridges sticking out at strange angles. There appeared to be a semblance of a control panel on one side, hosting an array of buttons. Unsure of what to do, Lucas searched his memory for any shred of information that could identify the strange object. After a few minutes, he gave up trying. Not knowing what to do, Lucas pocketed the object and started on his way home. Part 2 “Are you sure you’re ready?” The bald man looked over at Catherine, his face conveying little emotion. Catherine brushed her hair back over her right ear, trying to ignore the man and focus on the door in front of her. She took a deep breath, trying to ensure that her mind was clear. Without even answering the question, she pushed the door open and walked into the room. The room was well lit, giving the table that took up the center of the room a striking contrast to the suits of the men that sat at it. The men looked up at her as she entered the room, causing her to subtly bit the inside of her lip. She continued to the front of the table, putting down the papers that she was carrying. She stood at the front of the room without saying a word, leaving the room in silence. One of the men leaned forward and broke the silence. “You can start whenever you want.” Catherine straightened up and began the presentation, prompted by the man’s words. “Hello, I’m here today to present to you our most recent development, the Control Capsule. It’s a lightweight and powerful device that my team has been working on for the past four years, and we believe that it’s almost ready for military use. The device is based on a phenomenon found in the Akledemerin Caves known simply as the Akledemerin Effect. The caves have caused people to temporarily lose control of their thoughts and actions. We have researched this phenomenon, and have found the cause. People in the caves seem to have part of their Vivos, or life energy, drained and replaced with the Vivos of a nearby person. That person can then indirectly control that person’s actions for a short period of time. Our device emulates this, and allows a person to drain some of a person’s Vivos and replace it with their own, allowing temporary control.” One of the men in the back of the room interjected “I’ve heard talk about this device. From what I’ve heard, it’s been dubbed the ‘Corruptive Control Capsule’, since its caused insanity in some of its users. Now why would that be?” Catherine fidgeted, but spoke up before anyone else could comment. “We’re not yet sure of the cause, but we’re working on preventing that particular side effect. As I’ve said, it’s still not fully ready, it’s getting close.” The man interjected again. “It’s been four years and you still have no way of producing a stable weapon? I say that you leave and figure this out, because I’m not going to put any more budget towards this project. We all agree that you’re taking too long.” Catherine looked around the table, desperately hoping that someone would stop the man’s rant. Another man scribbled a note in his notebook and looked up to speak. “Catherine, we’re not going to funnel more funds into a project that isn’t showing results. Go ask someone else.” Devastated, Catherine took a step back. From the looks that she was getting from the men at the table, she had no hope of getting the extra money. Without a word, she gathered her papers off the top of the table. The men continued to watch her as she walked out of the room, slamming the door behind her. She walked down the hallway, swearing under her breath. In all her years working as a weapon designer, she had never been treated that badly. Or at least, she had never been treated that badly by her superiors.
  19. Well I decided to try something I'm generally not good at, first person! Was sick of Seventh sanctum until it churned out the little beauty that is Ethereal Tear which fit perfectly with my idea from before. The characters I'm using are pretty obvious, and hopefully there will be a inebriated individual for the entire second half and a possible plot romance. Anyhoo, enjoy! First page of the letter discovered in Wyrfrad Manor's Cellar. It was found amongst a small pool of blood and a fallen bookcase. Ever get that feeling on the edge of the abyss, that the world would be a better, simpler place if you just jumped? That tingle on the back of you skull that you need to itch but can't seem to reach no matter how much you scratch? Well that is me as I write my account of what happened that faithful winter's day. But first, before the clarity of my mind fades once again and the tear takes shape again, I must explain the reason I failed. The reason I'm writing this in amongst my own blood and faeces with salty tears streaming down my face. I don't pity myself, far from it. In fact I'm proud that despite my fruitless efforts I'll be the first to witness the power in its truest of forms. That unholy light permeating through my very fibres tugging at the last remanents of my sanity. The voices beckon me, but I must finish this task! I shall try to continue this account as I begin my final descent down that infernal stairway. Those between realms rejoice, for you have won! Before this all began I was a clerk in a bank, reaching the last stages of my life in blissful ignorance to my fate. I had been married twice and with almost 6 grandchildren I was content to live out my last couple of decades in peace, bathing my grandchildren in praise and promise. Despite my quite high position in the banking trade I had long lost my touch, often being called Mr. Oldschool by the younger more ambitious interns. They mocked me and my apparently plodding nature openly but I truely could not care. I had passed my prime and knew it. My boss was also a dear friend, godfather too my two sons and daughter. He and I had been thick as thieves since childhood, but there came the day when he asked for my resignation and gave me an early retirement. This is where things began to change. I remember that last walk out of the bank, with my meager office belongings piled into a small sturdy carboard box. The jeers of some younger interns made my skin crawl, but my friend had asked me to retire so they could get some new blood. He was apparently being forced to retire as well. No matter, I thought, this just means I can start golfing earlier. How wrong I was. When my second wife got wind of my forced retirement she supported me but mentioned now was the time to move out to the family estate permanently. I glady agreed to her idea and set myself to purpose with zeal. Within the week we had moved to our family's estate, a modest manor out in the Welsh country-side with now neighbours around other than sheep and deer. It was the beginning of our glorious twilight years where our hobbies became true passions and our grandchildren became creatures without fault. It wasn't til the onset of our first winter that my nightmare began. Elizabeth, my dearest wife, had come down with a serious case of pnemonia. In the following weeks her condition worsened until the unimaginable happened and I was left to brave my final decades without her by my side. Grief stricken I began to turn inwards upon myself shunning family and friends, turning to ever darker ways of amusement. I feel, that in retrospect, that this is when my grasp on reality began to slip. Within my manor's old library that I discovered the tomes that would lead me to my ultimate doom, great leather opuscules on the nature of man and his spiritual other. The subject intrigued me not just cause of the circumstances, but also the ramifications my actions could create or at least, what my inward self loathing could create. With great care I plied my way through these opuses of arcane nature rewriting snippets of information I did not understand and scraps of ineligible information so that I might find their true meaning. My search for a lexicon on the same subject were in vain so I decided to journey into the nearest town and search their libraries. When the snow had died down somewhat I decided now would be the time to venture into town in search of my much needed lexcion. The syntax in some of the tomes was so foreign to me that at times I felt the cure would be worse than the condition. But this determination in me had built up to a freverant pitch, driving me to search on despite the nagging sensation at the back of my neck. After hours of searching throught the old dusty shelves I began to discover what I wanted, and even better what I needed. Amongst the lexicons there was a small, innocuous manuscript that seemed to call to me. The cover itself molded to my hand as if fate had guided it towards me with the promise of forbidden knowledge. And what knowledge! The books name was the Ethereal Tear and Other Insidious Items, a title that would scare off the weak of mind no doubt. But my addiction to this occult knowledge strove to plunge me past my better judgement, despite the sensation of rising bile in my stomach, and buy the book. How this decision would determine my life the weeks to follow would be lost on me at that time and only now do I realise that feeling wasn't morbid curiousity but the luring nature of an object that was better left undisturbed. My life had begun its final spiral and now all it needed was passengers to share the journey. The second page of the letter was found outside the manor's library, partially burnt from the fire. Due to this the first paragraph has been lost but the last part is mostly whole. Pieces of what appeared to be a third page were found but had detriorated beyond recognition. ...done it! It had been an ardous search, but I managed to procure the supplies I needed. That coupled with the best possible acquisition I could've hoped to make, a willing host. My two new assistants shared my passion, my addiction to the book. I had become transfixed by these pages that's words seemed to dance in my head willing me to do things I never thought I could do. But by God the Items it described! Object of inexplicable nature or origin that boggled the mind and warped the constants of our world. The Altar, the Astral Nexus, the Broken Key... things that no human should find. But it was the titular Ethereal Tear that truely beckoned to me. The stories of its power had been amongst our world's greatest stories since time immemorial. Jesus... Mo-......even Was-.....many had used this Tear to possess the minds of the populace, making them seem close to God. Everything was up for grabs if I could just touch it... imagine the po-.....the ne-...prophet. My new assisstants believed that it summon it we need a sacrifice but I had been reading the tomes. Blood had to be spilled yes, but not death. Not yet. It was my younger assisstant the helped me to this conclusion. Her name was Lyndsay, a beautiful young girl with firey red hair and even hotter temper. She said she was from Ireland, but I was skeptical due to her lack of accent. She did drink like an Irishman however, swallowing a great deal of my wine collection in a matter of days and raiding my brandy cupboard on the odd occasion. Despite her state of constant inebriation she was a feverent worker and truely a believer in this eldritch power. Her demeanour clashed with my other helper however, a man by the name of Richard. He seemed to be infirm and always came down with colds. Lyndsay told me that he used to be a streetwalker and that the ailment most likely came from his profession. But no matter as he worked well and seemed to be almost as driven as me but for different motives. So we set to work, opening the Manor's cellar and the small cave it had been built on. The spiral staircase leading down had been a problem at first but after some quick repairs we had reached the bottom, to small room where we would rendezvous with fate in the coming days. But-......the rest has been smoked black by the fires and is most likely lost
  20. Until I figure out a not crappy title for this thing. Here's the start of my entry for this round of KamWri. "'Gimme another, gimme another, gimme another!' I tell ya, it's the same every day. They come in here treating me like a slave, like my job isn't hard, that the only thing to it is just pouring drinks and they're the only ones with 'real' problems. Well, let me tell ya how many times I had to pour and pour this joker's drink because there were too many bubbles in it and it would clash with his aura." He waved his hands in the air sarcastically, rolling his eyes and sneering. The tavern was crowded, nigh every seat taken up by various patrons and their companions. A few had taken to dragging in chairs from outside, unwilling to sit outside in the pouring rain, streaking mud across the wooden floor. "I'm tired of people tellin' me they wished their life was easy as mine, 'cause it ain't. It ain't easy and it never was easy. Not even in the beginning." The woman sitting at the bar listened to his tirade tiredly, rolling her glass between her hands, the liquid swirling inside untouched. She had brought it to her lips to drink earlier, but upon finding lipstick smears from a previous customer, she couldn't bring herself to use it. Too often had she made the mistake of drinking from something less than clean only to find herself sporting mysterious new appendages or unable to count. Enchantments were all well and good, she thought, but they were personal and not something to be inadvertently shared with others who chose not to make use of them. He continued to rant, absently wiping a glass with a filthy rag, a vein bulging from his neck as he worked himself up over the injustices he faced every day. "Hang on a sec, Don," he said, interrupting himself mid-sentence, putting the glass down. "Hey! You with the frilly cape!" From across the room, a young man in a bright orange cape, pointing a knife at the person sitting across from him, loosened his grip on his weapon and looked up, confused. "Yes, you! Put that shit away! You got problems, you take it outside, jackass!" His eyes bulged. "Oh, you little shit. Don't you even—" "Let me handle it, Rex." The woman stood up and pushed her barstool in, wiping the condensation from her drink on her pants. "You're causing a scene." She made her way through the room, manoeuvring around people in bulky armour and robes, trying not to trip over the shields and packs littering the area. The storage room was likely once again empty and unused—travellers often refused to relinquish control of their belongings, believing the numerous stories the town was known for being a safe haven for rogues and shysters. In a few moments she stood at the table of the troublemaker, who had since put the knife down, bitterly gathering up scattered cards and slipping them into his sleeve. "What seems to be the problem here?" "Frankly, it's none of your business," responded the caped one as he stood up. "I was just on my way out, no thanks to that loud-mouthed bartender over there. He's bad for business." The person sitting across from him, an older man in plain clothing, his glass of water perched on the ledge of the shuttered window, shook his head and extended his hand to the woman. "Evenin', Don. We was playing a game and it seems he doesn't take too kindly to those who can spot a cheater when they see one. His cards are marked. Amateur, if'n you ask me." "Is this true?" she asked, placing a hand on the young man's shoulder, causing him to sit back down. "Despite what people may say about us, the locals here don't abide by cheaters." When she received no answer, she bent forward, leaning into the man's ear, lowering her voice. "Now, you may think with your flashy cape and little tricks that you've got what it takes to pull a fast one on him, but I'll tell you right now I can see it in your eyes you're hardly a few years away from your mother's teat. Your belligerent silence tells me that much." She straightened up, gesturing towards the door. "If you will, please show yourself out." And here's the aspects I'm going to try to incorporate into the story. We'll see if I'm successful this time around, haha. From the SS generator: Spell Destabilization Characters: The narrow-minded heroine // The aged, obedient cleric who is considered the worst in his/her profession // The tough, whiny bartender [i haven't decided if I actually want to use the middle one yet!] Bonus: A Plot relevant Romance Occurs From Shazi's list of objects: Ancient Plate of Ancientness
  21. i plan to broke it down to parts and stuff win i get done with it The Darkness Inside For A Time I Have Been Feeling The Over Flowing Power Of the Darkness Pulling At Me One day a dark shadow came out of the darkness, in my room and it came up to me and start talking about all this insane stuff I had been doing in my sleep. I started to wonder if I had gone crazy or it was just a dream. Then for some reason out of no where, I answered the dark shadow, "Who are you? I do not know what you're talking about." As a smile, unlike me, showed in the mirror across from my bed, on the wall a weird red glow showed in my eyes. I did not even know what was going on. The voice in my head start to say, "I am your dark side and I'm taking control. I'm sick of being in the shadows and only coming out with your happy go lucky ass goes to sleep or if your in a bad mood for some reason!" I start to think to myself, "I most be going crazy... 'I will just lay down and I will feel better like normal.'" Then the voice in my head said, "Yes, yes go lay down it well make it so much more easier for me. It will better for you if you just go lay down and let me out, like you always do." I looked in the mirror on the wall and I could see that my right eye had gone pure red. I tried to close the one eye or even blink but nothing made it change. Then there was a knock on my door. "Here we go again! Who is it?" There was no answer. "Grrr..." I got up and walked over to the door, right as I was about to open it, there was a knock at my window. I opened my door not paying any attention to the knock at the window. There was no one outside my door but the back door was open. I walked over and closed the door and locked the door. I walked back in my room to my bed, then there was a knock at the window again. It was midnight outside, who could be knocking on my window? I had this feeling that if I looked, it would not be good. I sighed and reached to open the curtain but my right eye start to really burn. Then the voice in my head, that I some how was trying to block out said, "If I was you, I would not do that." Whats out there knocking on the window is not something you can deal with. I'm not even sure I could deal with it. You better go have a look around the house to make sure one of them things, that are out there, are not in here." Stupid me answered the voice in my head, "What do you mean things and what do you mean your not even sure you could deal with it more or less me?" Like I said, your weak, you are to happy, you would not even stand a chance in fighting. If you were asleep, I could probably deal with it myself but your awake and I'm not at my full strength. I have not had any blood in a long time. I looked at the mirror across the room, my right eye was even more red, a very deep red, that you only see in blood. "What do you mean by blood and what do you mean by strength? I never really thought I was weak but what your saying is that I have some super human strenght?" "Yes you fool! Your not even human in the first place! You just forgot what you really are all this time. You have spent so long with these weak humans, which have made you forget who you really are." "What do you mean who I really am? I don't understand." "Well why don't you open that curtain and find out what you really are." "What do you mean find out? I don't get it at all. What the hell are you talking about!" "Why don't you try to smell around for once." I smell everything "Smells normal to me." "Oh my god! You are so hopeless... Fine give me control and I will not take full control. I am you anyways, it wouldn't make a difference if I did take full control or not. You could probably take it back in no time." "Grr... Your making less and less since! I am going to go get something to drink maybe that well help." "Fine... But I warn you I'm pretty sure that whats outside that window is inside this house right now." I get up and walk over to the door then look back at the window. There was a knock on it again. this time a little louder then before. I start to sweat. "Whatever is knocking on my window could probably broke it. Then I would be in big trouble." I walk back over to the window. Right as a I go to open it, I take a deep breath. "What is that smell? It's not normal, it smells sweet with a little smell of there really no other word to it put but shit." I take a step back then memories started to come back to me. Of blood everywhere, blood on the walls, blood on the ceiling, blood on the floor. I looked at myself in the mirror across the room. "That I don't know or do I know what going on." I start to panic, I dropped to one knee. Slowly I take a deep breath. This time the smell of blood was stronger. Something inside me started to thirst for not food, not a soda, but this sweet smell. the voice in my head start to talk again, "Now your starting to get that right, your not human." "What do you mean I'm not human? What about the movies and stuff I've seen about them like walking in sun light and stuff. Like that I do it everyday." The voice in my head, "Yes that why there out there out there, not like you, your not human or a vampire." I start to freak out win he said "vampire." Both of my knees where on the floor now. "What do you mean I don't understand... What the hell are you talking about? Vampire?? What do you mean vampire? Vampires are not real. They are only some stupid legend some kids made up to scary little kids." "You fool they are very real and their here and there's more tham one. This time for the last four months, they have been coming here. One at a time but not this time. They mostly started to come when you started to wake up from you long sleep. You did something really bad when you were young. Then you blocked it all out. You forgot, you block your memories and you made me at the same time to deal with your thirst as well as deal with anything that would come after you." I looked across the room again to the mirror on the wall, this time I got really scared. both of my eyes where blood red. The voice in my head start up again. "Well.. well.. what do we have here? I myself have not seen your eyes this red before. Well not in the times I was in control." "What do you mean? I don't even understand whats going on myself." "Like I said, you started to wake up the power you used to block out your memories. It was not meant to be used for this long and you have not been able to feed in the last two nights. So the blockade that was blocking my voice from reaching you, is now broken. So there for, you can hear me now and the shadow you seen was me coming in." "Okay. So what your saying is I have been using powers... that I had no idea i was using, to block your voice on the nights that i stay up? And why would just two nights of not feeding kill the blockade?" "Because on the nights you stayed up, I only had a little time to look for food. And there so happened be someone close by to feed on." "I'm not even going to ask what happen to them. But if you feed on someone don't they turn in to vampire them selves? What I have seen in books and on tv, that only happens when you drain them of all their blood and give them your blood." As we where talking there was a knock on the window and at the back door this time. "God damn it! I got to deal with this." Some how he gets up but right has he start to get up his head start to hurt terribly. Then some of his memories start to come back to him. About how to fight, read minds and control fire. "What the hell is going on! you did not say that getting my memories back would hurt this much when they came back." "Well I have never seen it done, so... I don't know at all. I know that you will not get them all back at one time, some will come back one at a time. Some will come more then one at a time." He makes a ball of fire in his hand. "Well this is kind cool." As he makes the fire ball bigger and smaller. update again enjoy only came up with a little more for now to be continued
  22. I decided that due to the death of the rp that I'd try and write a short story of the it. I already have a proper story in the same timeline partially written, but I'll write this as a different string of events. For a detailed description on the world this is based in check out the discussion thread about it in the RP section. It has race, country and a few other important features described. This, won't be a sign up, but if considering I'll be winging this story, if you have a character bio thats original then by all means, send it too me. Some characters are being highjacked from the RP as well, lol. Anyhoo, onto the intro. Prologue: Moonlight The waning moon's gentle light bathed the forested landscape in light; rolling over the treetops with a texture most akin to silk, drowning it in a serene misty veil. It's softness; it's ethereal effect seemed to play with the mind's conception of reality. It made the land seem alive, but then again, the world was alive, should Gaia show anything. The grandeur of the scene was not lost on the individual standing on an overhang nearby the forested scene. He looked on at the beauty of the view, breathing in deeply as if the savour the moonlight itself. The snapping of tiwgs caused him to turn abruptly, twirling round to confront whatever may be moving towards him. His long flowing robes, and the strange heavy thread seemed out of place in the pristine surroundings. They were obviously manufactured, completely man-made, or dwarf made. The clashing contrast made him stand out even more for what was following him; hunting him. His face hidden in the darkness covered by the ragged, messy hair he sported on his head. His scraggly beard was dark and wet, be it the natural colour of by some other means, it did not fit again. He looked up slightly, the moonlight catching a glimpse of his deep blue eyes, even in this state of panic they were in tone with his surroundings, serene. Another couple of twigs snapped, and from between the lower tree line three individuals moved out into the caressing moonlight. Two shambled, moving in a rolling gait that seemed unnatural and jolting, whereas the middle individual moved with efficiency, purpose and stood bolt upright. It to took in the moonlight in a massive heaving breath, too large for any living creature to manage. As it did so a soft light shined from various parts of his body, which seemed to become liquid and dark. But when the breath was done, he yet again appeared human. The man on the ridge pulled something from the confines of his robes, and whirled his wrist in a motion that wrapped his sleeve around his arm. In his hand he held something, the light caught it and the surrounding area was dazzled by dancing lights. The crystal seemed to absorb the light and throw it outwards. But this didn't deter the three creatures as they could only be called so, being to unnatural to be human. They began to move towards the robed man, who had begun to mumble in an low tone, speaking into the crystal he held, as if whispering to a lover. The light seemed to dim around him, and the crystal seemed to be getting brighter. As the three saw this, the middle one stopped and nodded to the other two, who sped up their pace into a shambling run, reminiscent of a bear. The robed man stopped whispering and his eyes shot up now bright and focused. He screamed an unintelligible string of words, with the crystal outstretched in his hand. The light it had "absorbed" shone brightly in the stone for a moment before firing outwards in three speeding balls towards each of the creatures before him. The two on the sides didn't flinch, continuing their charge towards him and ultimately colliding head on into these spheres of light. Both were knocked back several feet and splayed out on the cold floor. One had caught fire, but there was no movement from them. The middle creature had dodged the light by rolling his shoulder and bending his back at an impossible angle. As it straightened itself, it looked at him and roared. Its roar was not like anything imaginable, sounding elephantine but as if made by fire and the grinding of metal on stone. It's mouth stretched beyond the limits of any human jaw and a luminesance of purple light came from his throat, eerily moving as if from a fire. The creature shod its human appearance, its skin becoming like a black moonless night, liquid and unnatural. It's neck had elongated as had it's arms and fingers, giving it a simian yet canine appearance. It's eyes were the true testament to it's archaic nature, both eyes being replaced by two eyeless pits that shone with the same purple light. It hunched down onto all fours and roared again, its noise scaring away roosting birds all alone the forest line. "Who is your master, wraith? Why does he want me killed!?" shouted the robed man, visibly shaken by the creature before him. The creature tilted it's head, much like a dog would and in three bounding strides closed the gap between the two. The man had little time to react and threw his crystal into the floor, smashing it apart. The light shone brightly, brighter than Sol itself, and burned through the unholy skin of the creature while blinding anything nearby. After almost a minute the creature stood up and searched around for the man, it's tongue darting in and out like a snake, tasting the air around the ridge. It made it's way to the edge of the ridge and saw the robed man at the bottom, spread out and in a small pool of blood. He was smiling. The creature howled and turned around, running back into the treeline and towards his master. He was not going to be happy...
  23. Here's my Entry into KamWri #3 I won't get it finished in two weeks, but it will entertain me in the mean time. I'm not usually one for gory, zombie apocalypse stuff, but that's the idea I got from my guidelines XD Part 1: The Beginning Life was hard, since the breakout. Those who survived lived in constant fear. Fear of one of the most horrific deaths imaginable. All of us had seen it. The Blood Fever. A virus created by the world society of medical science. The man responsible was the first victim. Victim Number One: Doctor Jacob Jamison. The investigation found that he had been working on a weapon. He was paranoid that the Japanese were going to attack, and he created the Blood Fury. His death was the same as all the others. First, it affects your brain, you become violent and attack anyone around you, thats how I spreads. Second, your blood pressure begins to rise, and it doesn’t stop, even after you’re heart gives in. The pressure becomes so high, that the veins and arteries burst. We’ve all witnessed it, the survivors. All of us have seen a person burst. It’s a horrific sight, especially for a child, But thats the world we live in. 5 years after the initial outbreak. The human race is but a shadow of what it was. 7 billion people, cut down to less than 1 billion, in 6 months. My name is Joanne Williams, and I’m a survivor. Part 2: The World The World today is a sad place. Family can be torn apart in mere minutes. We live in completely sterile buildings, like it’s a radiation fallout outside. Everyone is kept bald, so no one has a chance of carrying the bloody fury in their hair. I was up for my scheduled hair cut. I had short brown stubble on the top of my head, and that was enough to scare people. It’s times like these I wish I was blonde. At least then I’d be able to keep he head at least a little warm. I wondered over from my compound into the hair station. Sergeant Yullum and his platoon were standing at attention, waiting for the batch of people to enter. I was firs so I got my pick of soldiers. I chose a cute looking young guy, and sat in the seat in front of him. Part 3: The Hair Incident 5 years ago, a platoon of soldiers giving hair cuts would have seemed really strange, but today, it was normal. It happened almost everyday. I remember when the haircuts first began. 3 years ago, a woman called Clair Johnson, with beautiful blond hair down to her waist came in from gathering plant seeds, she came through the sterilising room, clean and fresh like everyone else. She told her husband; Clinton, that her hair was so hard to contain in the hazmat suits, and while she was gathering, it spilled over her head and caused her hat to come off. That should have been a hint to him, but he couldn’t bring himself to report her. He was the first one to die from this incident. He came out of his quarters and lunged at a young girl named Sarah Clemens. He bit her before he burst. I remember her screaming in terror, I was there, not far away, but far enough to escape the quarantine. Sarah screamed her little lungs out in pain and fear, then she began to growl. She attacked the soldiers trying to contain the Blood Fury. 3 of them were bitten before she burst. The soldiers that had been bitten, screamed for their comrade to leave the quarantine zone. To let them attack and kill each other instead of kill other innocents. The 5 other’s escaped, just in time to see their fellow soldiers rip each other to pieces, before bursting. There was blood everywhere, I can remember the smell. The awful, awful smell, those who witnessed, were taken to the decontamination center. Where our hair was shaved, and we were washed down until the water turned cold. Part 4: Elevator Incident I like elevators, always have. When I was younger I’d ride them just for the sake of it. I was kicked out of an office building after 3 hours of riding elevators to every floor. I hopped in and hit all the buttons. And as soon as one wasn’t lit anymore, I’d push it again. I don’t like to ride them anymore. There was another incident when I was riding the elevator to the underground plantary. 2 years ago a man name Steven O’Grady was with me at the time. I noticed a cut on his shoulder, I thought nothing of it, until I saw him lunge at someone outside the elevator when it opened. One of the Plantary workers named Sandra White. He ended up mauling her almost to pieces. Thankfully she was the only person in the Plantary at the time. I hit the close button, just in time to see O’Grady look me in the eye. As soon as the door closed, I heard him burst. The blood splattering on the door made me sick. I was in quarantine for a week afterwards. I was terrified I’d caught the blood fury, as was everyone else. Doctors is hazmat suits came in to test my blood and hair samples twice a day. Suffice to say, my elevator riding days were over. Part 5: On The Outside The world is very different on the outside. There are those who have the Blood Fury, that haven’t burst. The “Furies” as we call them are very angry people. They attack on sight, each other, or us. I’ve seen them only once before. When I was out there. Last year. Hillary Blue and Carl Whitehead were out with me at the time. We were out searching for some leftover plants for the Plantary. I’d left Hillary and Carl to see if I could dig up any root vegetables. I heard Hillary scream first, I ducked around the corner from where I was and saw four furies tear her apart. From where I was I could see Carl hiding. Thankfully the furies didn’t. At least, not until he sneezed. Carl tried to run, but it was no use, the furies were faster. They caught him and dismembered him right before my eyes. I stayed exactly where I was, frozen in fear, until I no longer heard them. I carefully came back to my compound, and reported to the Colonel. Part 6: Now I’ve seen a lot. But then so has everyone here. A lot of people have died in front of my eyes, brutally and horribly. I tend to keep to myself now. I stay in my own quarters, only coming out for food and haircuts. Sometimes I talk to myself. It keeps me company when I get lost in my memories. It never occurred to me that there might be someone I could spend my days with until he came along. I still don’t know his name. But he came in, told this horrific story. He said he’d come from a compound far north from here. To be honest I can’t even remember what country we’re in anymore, I can’t tell you where. He told us that between the old cities, the lands are green. There are no furies out there. He told us that they only live in the city, where all the people are. When he talks it sounds so wonderful. Its not the things he says, though he does make the country side sounds like paradise compared to the compounds. He told me he was looking for people to come with him. To live in the countryside, and away from the cities. I want to go with him, to see the old world. I don’t like it in the compound, I just have nowhere else to go. Part 7: Benjamin Wallace I met him properly today. We talked and he told me his name. His name is Benjamin Wallace, he says he is 25 years old, only a few years younger than me. He has agreed that I will come with him when he leaves. He says he wanted more than one person to join him, but one will be enough for now. I wonder, if the furies stay where the people are, if we all move, will they follow? I have so many questions for him, but I’m afraid to ask. Maybe once we’re out of the compound and the city. I will ask him everything. Part 8:The City It was hard getting out of the city, we left at night so the Furies had less of a chance to catch us. A few times they spotted us and gave chase. Benjamin knew exactly what to do. We took the alleyways with all their twists and turns and it wasn’t long before we lost them. After a few hours we reached the outer suburbs, they were a lot quieter than the inner city where the compound was. Benjamin opened one of the houses and set up the lounge rooms for us to sleep in. He took off his hazmat suit and crawled under a blanket. I asked him if I should take mine off too. He said I should, this far out from the inner city, the bloody fury wasn’t a threat. I believed him, and took my suit off. I crawled under the blanket with him and huddled for warmth. It was a long night, but Benjamin assured me that we were safe. It was the first time I’d been out at night since the outbreak, it was strange to be out in the open Part 9: Outside the Cities Benjamin and I were out of the city. It was serene. There was no sign on the furies, or even the virus anywhere. The grass and trees just waved peacefully in the wind. Benjamin decided that we needed to be out of sight of the city before we would be completely safe. I asked him about the furies, and if they would follow us if there were more people living outside the city. He told me that the blood fury can only survive in area’s with high concentrations of smog. Meaning that the furies would not survive outside the cities. I don’t understand why he didn’t tell the others that. He wouldn’t speak much after that. He’s the one who knows what’s going on though, and I trust him.
  24. My KW3 entry. It is at this point I realise I am going to give myself nightmares. She lay on the floor bound and gagged, a stifling blindfold tied too tightly around her head, her hair in rough tangles. Twisting violently against her restraints, she was determined to dislocate her arms and escape. Her muffled screams overpowered the pounding of her feet, the desperate attempts to stand unbalanced. The room was stripped bare, the tiled floor filthy and stained. Nails and open pipes protruded from the walls, remnants of once permanent kitchen fixtures. Where the cabinets had once stood, there was only unforgiving cement, managing to offer less comfort to the woman than even the sticky tile did. With a groan, she threw her head back, slamming it against the wall. The fabric of the blindfold caught on an exposed bit of metal and tore away as she whipped her head forward, screeching from the pain. Spittle began to run around the rubber gag and down her chin as she attempted to bring her arms to her head, to fulfil her instinct to reach out to her injury. Now caught on the wall, the blindfold came away from her eyes. They bulged from their sockets, the deep red sclera engulfing what little was left of her brown irises and minuscule pupils. Once she realised she was no longer blinded, her shouting and thrashing ceased momentarily as her eyes began to sink into place, the unnatural colouration still present. It was when they sank too far her voice rose. 97 Hours Ago All she could hear was the snipping of scissors and the distant chattering of the stylist, going on about troubles at her second job. Her eyes were shut, her gloved hands held tightly together beneath the plastic cover draped around her. The salon was busy, employees and customers alike flitting from station to station, wrapped up in conversation. "All done, sweetheart." The plastic cover was taken off her, the tearing of the velcro bringing her back to reality. "How do you like it? See, your face really is suited to a pixie cut like this!" Without looking in the mirror or opening her eyes, she took the dark pair of sunglasses she had hooked to her shirt and put them on. "It's fine," she said, her voice barely audible above the din of the establishment. She walked up to the counter and removed a hundred dollar bill from her pocket, placing it on the cash register. Without another word, she left. 109 Hours Ago The mirror was broken, shards littering the sink and floor. Her hand was bloodied, lacerated from the impact. A pale, viscous liquid was streaming from her eyes, the globs falling heavily from her chin onto her shirt and bare legs. She tried to wipe it away, smearing blood across her face, her eyes stinging from the pressure and friction. Slowly, she sank to her knees. Her body trembled uneasily against the door she leant upon, her hands shaking violently as she brought them to her scalp. She grabbed her long hair, pulling it harshly, the liquid from her eyes thinning as she began to cry. The mixture created a foul odour, a bitter, rank stench that cut at her senses. She took hold of the edge of the sink, pulling herself closer to the counter, dragging her shins across the floor, the glass cutting through her flesh. Grimacing, she reached into the basin and grabbed one of the pieces of the mirror, holding it tightly in her injured hand. With a choked sob, she began to slice through her hair. 100 Hours Ago "You look awful, honey. What did you do to your hair?" "People at the party though it'd be a funny prank." "Well, it's terrible. Do you want me to fix it for you?" "No, no, it's okay. You barely know how to braid hair." "Ha! Let me give you money to go to a salon then." "Thanks." "Haven't seen you in a while. What's with the glasses?" "Hungover. You know how it is." "Ah, I can sympathise. Don't be a stranger, okay, hon?" "I'll try." "See you at work tomorrow." "See you." 144 Hours Ago "Dude, what's up with your eyes?" "Hmm?" "You got pinkeye or something? New eye drops?" "What are you talking about?" "Dude, look." "You seriously bought one of those reflective cell phones?" "Shut up and look. You okay?" "I… I didn't even notice." "Has it been like that for a while?" "No, it… they were fine this morning when I got out of the shower." "You want me to pick you up any medicine or something for it?" "No, I'll be fine." "Isn't it contagious? I don't want you giving that shit to me!" "Oh stop it. I'm fine, I promise. Probably just a little irritated because I fell asleep in my contacts yesterday." "That'd probably do it." "Don't you have work to do?" "It's lunchtime, though." "You want to go somewhere to eat?" "Yeah, let's hit up that sandwich place again. I've got a craving." 114 Hours ago She was asleep. The glowing red digits of her bedside clock indicated it was half past nine at night. A soft breeze came into the room through the open window, the song of crickets and rustle of trees breaking the silence. Something was wrapping around her throat. Kicking the blankets off, she reached up for her neck. She didn't feel anyone in the bed with her or sensed anyone's presence, but she was in no state of mind to be aware. When she took hold of what had been choking her, she realised it was her own hair strangling her. Panicking, she tried to loosen its grip, but found she couldn't find where its weak point was—it had coiled several times around her flesh, seeming to weave itself together into an unbreakable noose. She tore frantically at her head, trying to rip her hair out by its roots, unable to find purchase around the strands held flat against her skin. Her nails dug into her scalp, tearing violently at her head. As she struggled, she noticed movement in her peripheral vision. Startled, she looked to the corner of her room, her eye wide and bulging. A shadow shifted in the dark, almost shying away from her wheezing coughs. The crickets outside had silenced, the wind stilled. It shouldn't have surprised her when, without warning, it leapt at her, crashing into her face and obscuring her sight. It shouldn't have surprised her when she still couldn't breathe despite her hair apparently having lost sentience. And it shouldn't have surprised her at all when she found herself staring into the bathroom mirror and saw her eyes had taken on a rather novel colouration and location on her face. 21598276 hOrUS Gao "What's wrong with her?" "Doctors said they aren't sure yet." "Doctors never know shit. Know what my brother says?" "Not really." "Why?" "Nothing he says is ever good. I'm just worried about her. Look at what she did to her head." "I hear drugs can make you do stuff like that, tear out your hair. I heard a story of a dude slicing off his own face while on PCP." "You don't think she did drugs, do you? You worked with her." "So did you!" "In a completely different department!" "Anyway, I don't think she did drugs. She didn't seem the type." "I wonder what happened…" "Me too. She was acting kind of weird when I asked her to lunch the other day." —3 hgO AOUrs Something wasn't right. "I've got a craving." Moments ago, her coworker was leaning forward, chin resting on the arm parallel to the top of the cubicle wall. She was sitting at her computer, looking over her monitor at the interruption, in the empty space where a cell phone had been held previously. The office was empty—an unusual occurrence, but one unnoticed by her. What wasn't right was her coworker's apparent lack of jawbone. Bloodied teeth and tongue aired in the open, the latter wagging obscenely at her. The arm atop the wall began to break, seemingly without reason, bone moving quite visibly beneath the skin, rearranging itself, lengthening her coworker's arm, stretching until it pierced flesh. She remained in her seat, trying to will herself to get up and move, but couldn't find the strength to do so. Her coworker moved the arm, pointing it towards her. "What's the matter? Don't like sandwiches?" She blinked. The office was full once more, her coworker no longer mutilated. "No, no. I… I'm just tired. Let's go."
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