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Fantasy Writers

Character Castle 2.0

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  • #150194
    Inkhorn
    @inkhorn

    @rose-colored-fancy

    I had a really interesting idea for a next challenge. It’s similar to this one, except instead of facing their fears, they learn what would have happened if they never face their fears and complete their arc. If they make all the wrong choices and become the worst version of themselves, where would they be in ten/twenty/thirty/however many years?

    Good idea! It’s funny, but Enydd’s fear matches what you said about them being the worst version of themselves. (Enydd: Funny?! Excuse me? I know what funny is, and it is not that!)

    Note: My story centers on the aspect that God is the truth.

    ENYDD

    “The room just ahead is a room of mirrors, though be careful. The mirrors have a way of revealing your soul. To escape the room, you must face yourself, and conquer your fears,” the man said to Abirami.

    Revealing my soul? Sounded lovely. Yet, despite the ominous feeling surrounding the door, I felt myself drawn to it. Perhaps because of the curiosity of what my fears would be and what was truly in my soul. Besides, there didn’t seem to be any other way out of the room.

    I followed Abirami and Ku to the door and went in after them.

    I saw myself.

    Dozens of me circling around me.

    What on Thrae? Was this my soul?

    Then, they all vanished.

    I was on a dirt road in the middle of, well, nowhere, as far as I could tell. Trees loomed over the path, blocking out the sun except for the few slivers of light that had the courage to peek through the thick branches. There was a dark figure ahead of me. They moved as one with the woods, blending with the shadows.

    “Hello!” I called out.

    The figure stopped but did not turn around.

    There was something familiar about them though I didn’t know what. I hurried up to them.

    “My name’s Enydd Skovga…Excuse me?!” I fell back as the figure looked at me.

    “Hello,” the person said softly.

    I gibbered a few unintelligible before finally being able to blurt out the obvious. “You’re me!”

    The person, me, smiled condescendingly. “I am you yet not you. I am who you would have been and still could be. I am a part of you though you have suppressed and ignored me for the past seven years.”

    “This-this…What is going on?”

    “You chose to walk into the room of mirrors. You tell me what is going on.”

    “So, you’re my greatest fear.”

    Not-Me laughed. It was a hollow noise, and I winced to hear it. “You mean that you are your greatest fear. Remember, I’m you.”

    I snorted, my initial surprised fading. “Sorry, but no. You’re not me. I mean, look at you!”

    “What makes me so different from you?” Not-Me asked. It wasn’t a question. It was a challenge.

    “You’re so dark! And your laugh was…not a laugh!”

    “Oh yes. I am so convinced now. Those were wonderful reasons.”

    Annoyance flared in me.

    Not-me smiled triumphantly. “Here’s a similarity for you. I get annoyed easily. You do too. One point for me, zero for you.”

    The trees’ shadows lengthened. This was not just a challenge. It was war.

    I breathed deeply. Lord, help me. Please. “Here’s a difference for you. The way you talk. You’re ridiculously condescending and arrogant.”

    “And you aren’t?”

    “Since you’re me, you should know that.”

    “But what about your thoughts? They can be quite puffed up at times.”

    “Well, that’s true. But I’m not proud of thinking them. I know they are wrong and repent of them. You don’t. I should know.”

    “Ah, so you admit you know who I am since, afterall, I’m in you.”

    I growled. “So what? You may be in me, but you are still not me.”

    “I can be,” Not-me replied simply. “I was once.”

    “No, you weren’t!” I shot back defensively.

    I shouldn’t have said that.

    “Liar,” Not-me trilled. “I was you. You remember those years quite well.”

    “Yes,” I muttered. “And they were the worst years of my life! I was a selfish, distrustful, arrogant, blind little girl! I’ve grown since then. Changed!”

    “Have you? How many times have you acted selfishly this past month?”

    I didn’t answer, but my silence was an answer enough.

    Not-me sneered. She was winning this battle. “Do you honestly trust those village people that you preach to? You’ve already admitted your pride. So that leaves blindness.”

    I tried to gather my defenses. “I am not blind! I know the truth!”

    “You know it, but do you believe it?”

    “Yes! Would I travel the country for no other reason than to be mocked?”

    “Not to be mocked, but for attention. To be known.”

    “That’s ridiculous.”

    “Is it? The attention may be negative, but it’s still attention. Fits right in to the pride category.”

    “Liar.”

    “Prove it. Prove that you truly believe in the truth.”

    I hesitated. Prove it? How on Thrae was I supposed to prove it? Oh Lord, help me! Help me defeat these lies. Please! I shut my eyes then spoke. “I can talk for years, listing reason after reason. Yet, you’ll always find some reason not to believe me. I can’t convince you, but I’ll tell you this. I accepted the truth into my life. He is the center of my life, and I my main goal is to follow him. To obey him. To share him to the world. Ever since I made that decision, I changed. I mess up loads of times, but now I recognize those things for what they are and repent. You know that. You’re me. We may be similar, but there’s a huge difference between me and you. You are blind to the truth and refuse to accept that. I see the truth and accept it. The truth is what makes you not me. Got that?”

    Not-me didn’t answer, but her silence was an answer enough for me.

    I sat up. What on Thrae was I doing on the ground? Wait, it was a dream? I glanced around me. Abirami was also awake though the others were still asleep.

    I laughed softly. “I just debated myself and won.”

     

    Whew! I am exhausted! Good night, all! *stumbles off to bed*

     

     

    It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations if you live near him. -Tolkien

    #150209
    Emily Waldorf
    @emily-waldorf

    @everyone I’m doing an online cleanse (of sorts),  so I don’t know if I’ll be able to keep up. Feel free to use Isella, and I’ll try to write some, but I have an inkling that I’ll be short on time from now on, so if it gets too problematic you can kick her out, or I’ll remove her. Keep being awesome!

    Don't cry for me, for I go where music is born ~J.S. Bach

    #150234
    Denali Christianson
    @denali-christianson

    @everyone

    HIIIIII I’ll respond to y’all like tomorrow when I actually have time. XD

    For now, Niarok is insisting that I get him back to dad status. So here goes…

    Niarok

    This felt strangely familiar.

    Painfully familiar.

    The smell of smoke was almost enough to send him into a flashback.

    Too bad he’d picked up Yila’s habit of panicking.

    Niarok shook his head, sniffing the air. The smell was off. His head felt fuzzy.

    Really really fuzzy.

    And the air…

    It definitely smelled like…

    Urgency stabbed through the fog in Niarok’s mind and he covered his mouth and nose with his shirt, every last one of his Mist instincts kicking in.

    He ran down the hallway, fishing through his pack and tearing out the herb that would counteract the poison.

    He had to get to a higher level.

    Unless the entire castle was filled with this stuff.

    Then he would die.

    He refused to let that be an option.

    The hallway curved and a staircase appeared. He took the stairs two at a time before nearly running off the edge into a dark pit.

    He pulled up short and sighed.

    Now he remembered this too.

    How the castle would move and change and crush and actively try to kill its inhabitants.

    Great.

    The poison was aching in his lungs, and he glanced along the ceiling.

    The doorway to the next level was six feet away and a bit higher than the level he was at. It would be a stretch, but he wasn’t about to give up. He had more of a chance dying of the death mist than he did of missing the doorway.

    He tore the pack off his back and hurled it through the doorway, then sucked in one more breath of the herbs before taking a step back, running, and leaping.

    For a heart-stopping moment, there was nothing beneath him. Nothing.

    Then the doorway was there. He grabbed the ledge and swung, nearly losing his grip and plummeting to his death.

    With a grunt, he hauled himself up over the ledge and lay on the floor, panting.

    And now his lungs were probably ruined forever.

    Now he knew how Yila felt.

    He stood slowly, every joint aching as the paralysis threatened to take hold.

    This was a serious, serious issue.

    Creating an entire medicine while walking frantically up and down a hallway was not ideal, but he’d cease to function if he sat down.

    The memory of all the people he’d paralyzed by that very method prickled his skin and he gritted his teeth.

    He was really starting to understand how Yila felt.

    Sorry, sis.

    And now there were voices.

    He pulled his satchel from the pack and found the three herbs he needed.

    And didn’t have time to combine properly.

    He shook his head and shoved them in his mouth. So maybe he’d have chills for the rest of the day, but at least he’d be able to move. Ideal wasn’t a word that applied to this ridiculous torture ride.

    Once his muscles started to loosen again, Niarok followed the voices down the hallway.

    What he found was…

    A room full of sleeping people?

    Muttering?

    In their sleep?

    What in the breath?

    Easily the strangest thing he’d seen so far in this castle. This time.

    The other time had been stranger.

    So now the question was whether this castle was still the malevolent livid beast it had been before or something different. More or less sinister, Niarok didn’t know.

    Just that he was not going to enjoy any changes unless they helped him get Yila back.

    And with that he collapsed to the floor as an overwhelming urge to sleep overtook him. But not before he saw a blonde man smirk into the room with the most evil golden eyes he’d ever seen.

    Must be the Keeper.

     

    Mori

    Now this was more like it.

    A castle all his own?

    Without internal rain clouds?

    Oh wait.

    Was that movement?

    Okay, so either the castle wasn’t all his own or it was raining.

    The man that played next to the empty gaping door cliff certainly didn’t look like a rain cloud.

    But he did look dangerous.

    Mori’s eyes narrowed.

    Enemy. Perfect.

    The man was strong. And tall. And clearly had some serious life experience.

    Not nearly so much as myself, clearly.

    But life experience nonetheless.

    Hrmph.

    So now the question was, did Mori kill him now, or wait, or slowly torture him by offering him false hope of…

    of…

    Scum of Intrendia!

    Where were the man’s thoughts?

    Seriously, where were they?

    No one was this good at guarding stray thoughts.

    No. One.

    Except for apparently this idiot. Who was now striding down the hallway to the Room of The Insane Muttering Sleepies.

    Mori ducked behind the door.

    I should kill him now.

    Except…

    Torturing him would be so much more fun.

    If I can figure out how.

    Then again…

    The man collapsed on the floor.

    Mori smirked as he stepped from behind the door.

    So maybe instead of just torturing cliff stairs man…

    He’d torture everyone.

    At once.

    He drew his knife and contemplated the carefully sharpened, slightly blood-stained edge.

    He couldn’t wait.

     

    THAT WAS SO WEIRD I’ve never written from Mori’s POV before…

    On another note, it felt SO GOOD to write Niarok again lol. I’ll write his challenge tomorrow or whenever I next recall that SE exists. XD

    "Where there's life, there's hope; and need of vittles."
    -Samwise Gamgee

    #150240
    Mr.Trip Williams
    @jared-williams

    @denali-christianson

    that was awesome. =) I like your characters.  I will write Ku’s dream later, but just a short fun ditty in response to Mori. ;p

     

     

    Abirami

     

    So bored.

    I was lying on my back again, waiting for Ku to wake up. A while ago, Enydd had woken up and walked around a bit, asked me what next, but she had gone off somewhere after I told her I was going to wait for Ku to wake.

    A man entered the room with his shirt over his nose. Had he come from below? I could see the hallway from the door he left ajar. At least I knew where that door led. Question was where the other three doors went.

    What room had five doors entering into it, anyway?! This castle was some sort of demented.

    The man laid down and fell asleep.

    Soon after, another man entered. He had a knife in his hand and a wicked grin on his face. All my instincts told me this man was worse than even the dhiaga. With him, I didn’t sense even a modicum of good will. The strength of the instinct made me wonder if I would even be able to reason with this one.

    I quietly took out the blow dart from Ku’s pack. Moving by instinct, I silently brought it to my mouth. The extract was from the creeping ice, but Malcuno had processed it so it wouldn’t kill him, only put him to sleep.

    Just in case the room didn’t work on him. After all, the first man hadn’t fallen asleep right away, but no way was I going to allow harm to come to a defenseless man, stranger or not.

    My eyes narrowed as I focused my sight. The man flipped his knife in his hand and looked up, staring right into my eye. A shiver went through my body as a foreign presence chuckled from within my mind.

    Fear shot down my soul. Who was this man?

     

     

     

    (hope that is acceptable @inkhorn . You can change it if you want. I just figured she wouldn’t sit around for long…  @denali-christianson , not sure if that fits with your characters ability or not, but I figured Mori would be able to sense the animal presence from within Abirami. … since my world’s magic is called essence, it works similar to Plato’s perfect forms, so for Abirami to transform into different animals, he has to have basically the true essence of the animals formed in his mind – so for a telepath like Mori, I would imagine it would be like seeing a bunch of live animals from within Abirami’s mind… Figured he would find that humorous? feel free to change it if you wish…)

     

    Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.

    #150242
    Denali Christianson
    @denali-christianson

    @jared-williams

    that was awesome. =) I like your characters.  I will write Ku’s dream later, but just a short fun ditty in response to Mori. ;p

    Lol thank you!!! That was immensely fun to write. I’m glad you like them!!!

    This castle was some sort of demented.

    THIS MADE ME LAUGH SO HARD 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

    not sure if that fits with your characters ability or not, but I figured Mori would be able to sense the animal presence from within Abirami. … since my world’s magic is called essence, it works similar to Plato’s perfect forms, so for Abirami to transform into different animals, he has to have basically the true essence of the animals formed in his mind – so for a telepath like Mori, I would imagine it would be like seeing a bunch of live animals from within Abirami’s mind… Figured he would find that humorous? feel free to change it if you wish…)

    “Listening” to you describing my character is so entertaining!!! And yes, I think that’s completely accurate. Especially since Abirami has the essence of animals in his mind, Mori will automatically be able to read him better and will find the spontaneous elephants quite entertaining. Along with the part where he can torture him.

    haha. I’m a math teacher, but I have also coached Scholar’s Bowl, so I know quite a bit from every subject area.

    That’s so cool! What grades do you teach?

    hahahaha. I have a poster in my classroom with Gandolph facing the balrog, on top it says “You Shall Not Pass”. and then on the bottom, it says “If You Do Not Have Your Name On Your Paper!”

    LOL THAT IS SO EPIC!!! That’s probably all I would stare at during classtime. XD

     

    @rose-colored-fantasy

    DENALI YOU’RE BACKKKK!!!!!! I MISSED YOU AND I MISSED NIAROK!!!!!

    SAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Niarok missed you (and Aydin – you’ll have to throw him back in sometime XD)

    LOL, same XD Whining about the weather is my one weakness XD

    And you and Mori will get along great. (when he’s not trying to murder your characters, that is XD)

    Oh, GOSH I’m glad I pulled out the little gremlin. She would have been AWFUL with Mori!!! It would have been worse than the Lorcan *s i t u a t i o n* The brat would get herself murdered and I am seriously doubting whether I would plot-armor-ressurect her.

    LITERALLY THOUGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I CAN’T EVEN IMAGINE!!!!!!!!!!!! It would have been absolutely hilarious until it ended in extreme amounts of blood.

    Awwww, yesss!!! Niarok is the sweetest, most wholesome character, he adopted all these traumatized idiots so quickly 🥰🥰

    Niarok is seriously my therapy character. He has a habit of adopting my idiot brain cells and making them function. No surprises there. XD

    Oh, Denali, I wish I could say Aydin is alive and doing well in his story but… I’m stuck at the low point, both of the story and his character arc. I have the decency to be ashamed of what I’m doing to my characters in general and him in particular. (He’ll be fine though, he’s survived worse… kinda. I hope.) *Evil laughter interspersed by tears because ohmygoodness it’s so awful.*

    *Cries with you because I know exactly how you feel* Just keep in mind that if I ever read your story, I’ll be sobbing the entire time he’s getting tortured. DON’T HURT MY CINNAMON ROLL!!! *knows you must but still sobs*

    I think you’ll like Mejt and Halmar! They’re from the pirate story (idk if I told you about it yet… it’s more high-fantasy than Liorah’s world.) Mejt has the soul of a bitter grandma and Halmar has the personality of a golden retriever. It’s great XD

    BEST COMBINATION EVER THOUGHHHHHH It sounds curiously similar to Evie and Dominic… Evie being the bitter grandmother, of course. XD

    Oh, gosh, Evie still giving you trouble?

    ALWAYS AND FOREVER I literally can’t with her. Although she’s better now that I stuck her in a worse situation than the one I had her in before. Because that makes sense… XD

     

    @everyone I sincerely apologize for all the terror your poor characters are going to experience from the monster my brain randomly created… *attempts to lock Mori in a closet*

    "Where there's life, there's hope; and need of vittles."
    -Samwise Gamgee

    #150243
    Rose
    @rose-colored-fancy

    Oh, idk if I mentioned this before, but Halmar has gotten himself a place as a deuteragonist instead of a side character XD It’s going to be dual POV now, because they have opposite views on the theme!

    Halmar

    “The room just ahead is a room of mirrors, though be careful. The mirrors have a way of revealing your soul. To escape the room, you must face yourself, and conquer your fears,” the man said to Abirami.

    “My soul?” Mejt said, distastefully. “Didn’t I sell that a couple of years ago for paints?”

    I laughed, quietly. Mejt’s dark sense of humor took some getting used to, which was why she’d said it so quietly only I could hear.

    “Let’s hope you got a nice painting out of it.”

    Mejt rolled her eyes but smiled.

    Abirami disappeared into the room of mirrors, followed by the brown-haired girl Mejt had introduced as Enydd.

    I grinned. I was absolutely going to die, but at least this was an interesting way. I strode over to the doorway.

    Mejt muttered something uncomplimentary under her breath as she trailed me. She had been tagging after me like a puppy ever since I’d made an appearance here. I didn’t mind. I was glad to see her again too.

    The room was filled with more mirrors than I’d ever seen. I paused, then turned, trying to see all my reflections at once. I’d never seen anything like it. All the reflections were bouncing off each other, in a bright melee of color.

    I caught my reflection, then stared back at myself. It was one of the first times I’d seen myself clearly. I looked more confident than I felt. I had become so good at faking my persona that it had become me.

    The mirrors vanished. I was by the sea again, in a port. It was easier to breathe now I was back on familiar ground.

    I turned around, trying to recognize the port. It wasn’t Varseina. The houses were small and white, practically cramped on top of each other, instead of the wide, canaled streets of Varseina, with the towering brown buildings in rigid lines. Something about them was still familiar. What was it? Had I ever been here before?

    I slowly started toward the town, inspecting the houses. My gaze caught on the top of the roofs. A wooden sign perched on the top of each ridgepole. Different symbols were carved out of each of them. Horses, flowers, leaves, oxen, anchors.

    I stopped dead. I had heard about this. My parents had told us stories about it, about how each symbol meant something to the family the house belonged to. But that had to mean…

    I glanced over the roofs, toward the distance. Tall, snowy mountains billowed over the horizon, interspersed by the darkness of forests, the kind that were nowhere to be found in Liqeni.

    My head was swimming with the realization that it must be true. I shot another unbelieving look at the docked ships. The figureheads were all too familiar, shaped like dragons and wolves.

    For the first time, I was home. I had dreamed of coming home, I’d never thought I would. This was the place my parents had told us about, it was everything I’d wondered and dreamed about. It was the place where I wasn’t a foreigner, it was the place where I belonged, and I was finally here.

    I strode through the city, trying to memorize every line of it, exactly what the streets looked like, the chipping plaster on the white houses.

    I was not watching where I was going. It was absolutely inevitable that I bumped into someone.

    It was an older man, and I instantly apologized. I couldn’t help almost beaming as I finally did so in my mother tongue for the first time I could remember. We’d only ever spoken it at home.

    The man stared at me in perplexity and disgust. I froze. Hadn’t he understood me? Had I said something wrong? Was there something I didn’t know?

    He shot me a final glare and moved on.

    Now I was getting worried. It seemed as if he hadn’t understood me. But wasn’t this home? Wasn’t this where everyone was supposed to understand me, where I would fit in without having to try?

    It couldn’t be true. I walked up to the next person, a man only slightly older than I was.

    “I’m sorry, I need directions.”

    He shot me a confused look, then shook his head and hurried past.

    I stood at the streetcorner, lost as ever. It had been too good to be true after all. I shouldn’t have hoped for a life where I didn’t have to strain and act to fit in. It was too much to expect that anyone would understand. Even here, the one place where I thought it wouldn’t be necessary, I was a foreigner, as unfamiliar here as anywhere else.

    And there was nothing I could do about it. I leaned against one of the plaster houses, listening to the sound of the hollow sea. There was no use looking any further. I would never find such a place. I didn’t feel at peace with it. I wish I had. I only felt disappointed.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I sat up with a start. I was still in the cave system. Everything else had vanished. There was no Shykval. I tried to remember it, the cold smell of the sea and streets, the mountains in the distance. It faded, too quickly. The disappointment didn’t.

    I sighed. Some of the others were still asleep, turning as though in a nightmare. Mejt among them, right next to me. I sat against the wall. I would make sure I was there when she woke.

    Two of the others were up, facing each other. A new man was pacing up and down, covering his face with his shirt. Was it the poison gas? I knew from experience how bad that was. He didn’t look in my direction, or I would have attempted some empty sympathy.

    The two others were more of a problem. It was Abirami, and someone I didn’t recognize. He carried a bare knife.

    That was bad. Usually, I wouldn’t attempt this by myself, but there were just two of them and a fight now could be disastrous.

    I planted myself between the two of them and gave both disapproving looks, my hand resting on my knife.

    Abirami’s weapon looked long-distance, but considering that I was practically shielding the man, I didn’t think he’d use it. I’d already heard of his reluctance to harm anyone who didn’t deserve it.

    “Kindly put that away, both of you,” I said, quietly, my voice deceptively pleasant.

    If this came down to a fight, I would be at a disadvantage. According to Mejt, Abirami could change into animals and this other man was holding his knife like he could use it. I had only gotten into a handful of fights, and I hadn’t often won. Fighting attracted attention, and that was always a terrible idea.

    However, they were both younger than me, and not much bigger. I would be able to hold my own, at least for a while. I wasn’t going to let it come to that.

    _________________

    LOL, I didn’t expect Hal to start acting like the responsible elder sibling XD

     

    Without darkness, there is no light. If there was no nighttime, would the stars be as bright?

    #150253
    Inkhorn
    @inkhorn

    @denali-christianson

    You were not kidding when you said that Mori was a straight up villain. Two seconds in the castle and he’s already pulling knives on people!

    ANOTHER WONDERFUL LORD OF THE RINGS QUOTE! (Any quote with the word “vittles” in it is awesome XD)


    @rose-colored-fancy

    LOL, I didn’t expect Hal to start acting like the responsible elder sibling XD

    As soon as any character starts acting as a responsible elder sibling, they’re immediately on my list of favorite characters. XD It’s awesome and very interesting to see the contrast between Halmar and Mejt.

    ENYDD

    I got up. My excitement at defeating my fear was turning into energy that desperately needed to be released. I began to explore the room. Thirty seconds later I was back in my original spot. It wasn’t a very big room. I sat down again. Not knowing what else to do I rummaged through my bag, sorting objects out and putting back in their constantly changing places.

    A man heaved himself through the door. He had a rag to his face. He stumbled to his feet before collapsing to the ground, asleep.

    I’d have to introduce myself to him later after he was traumatized by facing his worst fear. No, exhausted. Or elated at defeating it. Or maybe all three! I giggled.

    I was too funny for my own good. No, I was, as Ellis put it, “the only one on Thrae with a mind sophisticated enough to understand the humor in my jokes.”

    The whisper of footsteps alerted me to yet another man. Instinctively I shrank back. He was bad. No, evil. Or dark. No, all three.

    He crept forward and stopped as he saw the other newcomer. He grinned maliciously and pulled out a knife.

    I got to my feet. But what was I going to do? Happy him to submission?

    Abirami pulled out a blow dart and aimed at the man though he did not shoot.

    The worry in my chest loosened. Thank goodness he was awake.

    Another man, May’s brother, stepped forward. He gently placed a firm hand on the man’s arm while putting himself in between the murder intent man and Abirami.

    “Kindly put that away, both of you,” he said in a calm voice.

    Neither obeyed.

    My hair prickled as the tension rose.

    I cleared my throat.

    “Um, I think you should do what he says. I mean, I don’t know much about weapons, but I think that those can do some serious harm.” I chuckled nervously. “Please just put those away. I mean, unless you want to hear my ramble. And let me tell you, I can ramble for hours especially when I’m nervous or excited. And knives tend to make me nervous.”

    I sighed internally. I must seem like a fool. Oh well, at least things weren’t as tense. Having a random person pop up randomly and say random things usually worked well in deescalating situations.

    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by Inkhorn.

    It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations if you live near him. -Tolkien

    #150255
    Mr.Trip Williams
    @jared-williams

    oooh things just got interesting. lol … @denali-christianson , forgive me if I’m wrong, but Mori wouldn’t hesitate to try to stab Halmar…. right?  hehe

    and…

    they were both younger than me, and not much bigger. I would be able to hold my own, at least for a while.

    haha. this made me laugh for some reason. Poor Halmar, doesn’t know Abirami’s ability yet… lol.

    But great job writing! It took me by surprise. Didn’t expect that…

     

    Ku’Aya

    I walked into the room of mirrors and immediately lost my equilibrium.

    What kind of joke was this? There were no mirrors. Only darkness. Darkness so thick it made me wonder if my eyes were truly open.

    Lifting my hand, it came into focus, but beyond it I could see nothing. Not even the floor.

    Spinning around, I searched for Abirami, but he was gone. Panic set in.

    “No.” No way could I be alone.

    I stretched out my essence, seeking for some living creature. Surely, I would find one. Even as a street urchin, I was never really alone. Every square inch of earth housed millions of friends I could have as companions.

    Falling down on my knees, I searched the strange, cold ground I was on. If felt like glass, but it was as hard as metal. I couldn’t actually see it, but I could feel it.

    The panic worsened. Not a single insect? How was that even possible.

    Where was everyone? Where was I? What was I supposed to do? Where should I go? Could I go anywhere?

    Hyperventilating, I hugged my knees and fell over into the fetal position. Every fiber in my body rebelling against my solitude.

    Abandoned. Unwanted. Worthless. Unloved. Why was I even born?

    Tears streaming down, I cradled myself, unable to move. Unable to speak. Unable to think.

     

    (Poor Ku. Sadly, this isn’t even her worst fear. Being left in the dark is just one side of it, and she will struggle to get past even that. She hasn’t even faced herself yet… Okay… a small bit for Abirami now…)

     

    The man May had been practically hanging on stepped in between us.

    “Kindly put that away, both of you,” he said with a cheerful edge to his voice.

    The man smelled of the sea, and his arm muscles were too big for his shirt. A seafarer, my guess, but the guy must have had quite a bit of confidence to step in front of that man.

    I kept the knife in my periphery as I stared into the eyes of the stranger. Somehow I could hear his voice in my head, and he seemed to be trying to speak to my essence. It was strangely invasive and unpleasant. At least address me if you’re going to talk to me mentally. Still, who was this that had such power? He didn’t look like a neulahdian.

    Still, I was glad Ulhas taught me something of protecting my mind from people like him. I restricted my mind, emptying it of all but what lay before me. Still, the voice continued, resorting to strange baying and howling, as if a more feral attempt to communicate with my essence would merit a different response.

    Enydd walked up and pleaded with us to listen to the seaman, but I didn’t hear her exactly. I was too focused upon the telepathic psychopath. One move, buddy. Make one move, I dare you.

    I didn’t blink. Neither did the telepath, and time stretching, making seconds seem like ages. Then the grin on the telepaths face grew ever so slowly.

    With a reflex as quick as lightning, the telepath used the angles of his wrist and elbow to break the seaman’s hold of his arm in one fluid motion.

    At the same time, I reacted just as succinctly, augmenting the bear’s strength, I grabbed the seaman by the forearm and pulled him back behind me and out of the reach of the shiny metal dagger that barely missed.

    This telepath wasn’t just a strange walking ability, he knew what he was doing. Had I not moved him, that knife would have come down on the guy’s neck, angled sharply in.

    Bringing the blowgun to bear once more, I inhaled deeply, aiming between the telepaths eyes.

    His grimace nearly gave me pause, but then the telepath wavered, his eyes drooping. The room was finally taking an effect. Exhaling in a concentrated, short burst, I shot the dart at him, helping him find sleep all the faster.

    The telepath’s hand shot up to his neck, pulling the barb out, but it was too late. He fell to the ground like a sack of grain.

    “No!” Enydd cried.

    The seaman spun me around and pushed me back. “What’s the matter with you?” he hollered angrily. He grabbed me by the cuffs of my robe and lifted, getting up into my face.

    “It’s fine,” I said, dropping the blow pipe and holding my empty hands up. “I just put him to sleep.”

    The seaman wasn’t convinced. He pushed against me, shaking me with his grip, but then Enydd placed a staying hand on his forearm. “Wait, Abirami did save you from the man’s knife. I saw it.”

    “I coulda’ handled him,” he scoffed.

    “He’s too dangerous. We should tie him up,” I said, “and keep him sedated.”

    “Sedated?” asked Enydd. “But what if he’s just confused? Like you were, Abirami. Remember, you attacked us when you first arrived too.”

    I looked at her, puzzled by her reaction. Could she really be so naive? “Did you not hear him? He found pleasure in the thought of tormenting us.”

    “Hear him?” asked the sailor.

    “Abirami,” said Enydd. “he… didn’t say anything.”

    I looked between the two. So they really didn’t hear him?

    “He’s a telepath.”

    The sailor scoffed, laughing as he turned and walked toward the prone telepath. “This guy? Come off it.”

    Shrugging, I picked up the blow pipe and headed back toward Ku’Aya. “Do what you will, then. Just don’t take him lightly. In my world, telepaths once ruled the world, then nearly destroyed it. A cautionary tale.

    Sitting next to Ku, I waited. Enydd and the seaman spoke in length, but I was no longer concerned. The telepath wouldn’t wake up for at least another 5-6 hours. Unless he had the metabolism of a horse.

    Suddenly, a buzzing sound filled my ears, and I backed away as insects swarmed around Ku, blanketing her from sight.

    I recognized the sound of that buzz. Her hive was on the defensive. Even I would be attacked should I approach too closely.

    Backing up, the commotion brought the others.

    “What’s going on?

    “Stay back!” I yelled. Ku’s hive was not to be trifled with. There was plenty of poison in that mix.

    “Is it the girl?”

    “Who?”

    “The green one, with the funky ears.”

    “She’s still unconscious,” I yelled, coming to her defense. It wouldn’t do for them to blame her. “She can’t help it. The hive is acting on its own. Something’s not right.”

    “What’s not right?” asked Enydd.

    I looked around at all the faces. Some amazed, some scared, some disgusted…

    My gaze finally came to Enydd. “I don’t know.”

     

    Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.

    #150256
    Mr.Trip Williams
    @jared-williams

    (please change anything that’s not acceptable, and I didn’t mean to inadvertently push Mori out of the story for a while… One idea I had was the magic of the room, you could have him face himself and then once conquering himself, he could wake up, regardless of the potent sleeping draft I shot him with…. but again, change whatever. =) )

    Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.

    #150257
    Mr.Trip Williams
    @jared-williams

    (ooh… hope I didn’t move too fast there… )

    Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.

    #150259
    Rose
    @rose-colored-fancy

    @jared-williams

    Hmm, interesting! I’m going to change it slightly, but that was an interesting development!

    I don’t have anything for Mejt yet XD I know what her great fear is, but I don’t know how to create a scenario around it XD

    So… here we go again.

    Halmar

    They were still staring each other down. There was nothing I could do except wait for one of them to back down. They probably wouldn’t.

    “Um, I think you should do what he says. I mean, I don’t know much about weapons, but I think that those can do some serious harm.” Enydd laughed, but it sounded ridiculously tense. “Please just put those away. I mean, unless you want to hear my ramble. And let me tell you, I can ramble for hours especially when I’m nervous or excited. And knives tend to make me nervous.”

    I shot her a quick glance. She was as fixed on stopping this situation as I was, but I was worried about her. If either one lashed out I’d have to get her out of the way besides stopping the fight that seemed almost inevitable. I appreciated the support but it could cause more harm than good.

    They seemed to be having a staring competition. I sighed. They weren’t giving up and anything I might do to stop them would be the spark that started it. And then it would be my fault. I had learned one thing in my life. Don’t be a convenient scapegoat.

    Why were they this stupid? Why was it my responsibility now? I hadn’t signed up for this.

    The blonde man shifted his weight, ever so slightly. He was going to attack. Overhanded stab, by the way he held his knife. He wouldn’t be able to get past me, so it would be aimed at me.

    He twisted out of my grip, his dagger already shooting up. Aimed for my neck. He sure wasn’t wasting any time.

    I jammed my right arm between the dagger and his wrist, forcing it upward. Now it was purely a battle of strength, and I would lose sooner or later.

    If someone is trying to stab you, you’re going to get stabbed. Accept that, and make sure it’s on your terms, not his.

    That was a lot easier in theory than in practice. I pushed the dagger away from me. It was just enough to change the course of the stab, ever so slightly. If it hit me now, it would be in the shoulder, not the neck. I could handle that. Now there was a slight interlude, just long enough for me to hit him with my left hand if I was quick enough. It would delay the fight at least. I could always try kicking him.

    Before I could act, someone grabbed my arm and yanked me backward. It was so much more powerful than it should have been that I stumbled. That wasn’t fully human.

    The quick motion unfortunately involved pulling my right arm into the dagger. I winced as it slashed open my forearm.

    I was on my feet the next instant, ready to pull back Abirami. His intentions were good, but instead of stopping the fight he fully intended to win.

    Before I had the chance, he’d shot the dart into the man’s neck. It was definitely poisoned. I had failed.

    “No!” Enydd cried.

    Now I really did lose my temper. I shoved Abirami’s shoulder, making him turn around.

    “What’s wrong with you?” I asked, just a little too quietly. Nothing made me as angry as unnecessary violence. I could have stopped that fight without killing or seriously injuring anyone.

    Abirami had decided he knew better. He hadn’t tried to help me, he’d simply gotten me out of the way so he could do whatever he wanted.

    I glanced back at the man. Was he dead or unconscious?

    Abirami was shorter than I was, and I used that to my advantage as I glared down at him.

    He dropped the blowpipe and raised his hands, showing that he meant me no harm. He wasn’t malicious, he just hadn’t thought that through. Or he had extreme confidence in his capabilities, which could be a good thing or a bad one.

    “It’s fine, I just put him to sleep.”

    I wasn’t going to get angry at him. I was sorely tempted, but I wasn’t going to blow up at him. Mostly because it could get me in trouble, either with him or someone else.

    My forearm stung. The gash was shallow, but still long. It would be fine but it hurt. The pain didn’t do much to abate my irritation.

    “Next time, don’t take over. I was handling the situation, you might have made it worse. You’re lucky it didn’t go south,” I said, shortly. If it had I wouldn’t have let him off with this irritated warning.

    “He’s too dangerous. We should tie him up and keep him sedated,” Abirami suggested. I sighed. He was rather overeager. It was too much work either way.

    Before I could explain that it was not only overreacting but also not feasible, Enydd interrupted.

    “Sedated? But what if he’s just confused? Like you were, Abirami. Remember, you attacked us when you first arrived too.”

    She had a good point. If I hadn’t seen Mejt among them I might well have overreacted and drawn weapons myself.

    “Did you not hear him? He found pleasure in the thought of tormenting us.”

    “Hear him?” I asked, half tired, half amused. The man hadn’t spoken.

    “Abirami,” said Enydd. “he… didn’t say anything.”

    “He’s a telepath,” Abirami said, with such overwhelming confidence that I couldn’t hide a smile.

    He was just a little too sure of himself. It was both irritating and amusing.

    I laughed and shook my head and knelt beside the man. He was breathing, evenly. Abirami hadn’t been lying, he was just unconscious. He’d probably be fine. Just angry.

    I wasn’t going to have a chance like this again. I took his knife, then quickly checked for other weapons. Thankfully, I knew where to look. I found two other hidden knives and took them too. I would give them back as soon as he’d calmed down, but until then it might be a good idea to minimize the risk.

    Abirami picked up the blowpipe and stalked back toward the other girl.

    “Do what you will, then. Just don’t take him lightly. In my world, telepaths once ruled the world, then nearly destroyed it.”

    “Good to know,” I said, cheerfully. I was entirely undisturbed by his dark tone. If the man was going to try to read my mind, he wasn’t going to find much.

    _________________


    @jared-williams

    Okay, Hal isn’t taking Abirami all that seriously, but it’s more his perception than Abirami actually being stupid or irrational. XD Hal just doesn’t take anything seriously, now I think about it XD As usual, change anything, though I didn’t move the plot forward much XD

     

    Without darkness, there is no light. If there was no nighttime, would the stars be as bright?

    #150281
    Denali Christianson
    @denali-christianson

    @jared-williams

    Haha don’t worry! Mori is a happy little character who will find a way to murder everyone so just… don’t worry. XD

     

    Mori

    Ha.

    Metabolism of a horse.

    Yeah, well the idiot wasn’t wrong.

    The idiot was a horse. And a bear. And about fifteen other things.

    The elephants had been especially amusing.

    But frustrating.

    The idiot was far better at shielding than was good for him.

    Mori lay still.

    The idiot thought he could put the Darkness to sleep.

    He was wrong.

    Mori smirked.

    Just you wait.

    Ah, and now there were bugs.

    Ew.

    I mean, I could order them to attack everyone…

    Ew.

    At least it wasn’t raining. That would have been particularly unpleasant, especially in his eyes.

    And that other idiot had stolen his knives.

    Mori cracked his eyes open. Everyone had their backs to him, watching the swarming bugs.

    Mori grinned. He crept up behind Elephant Man and let Darkness flow from his hands before snatching the knives from the back of his belt.

    The man didn’t even flinch.

    Good old Darkness.

    Mori crept straight out of the room.

    The fact that Elephant Man had ruined his castle was quite infuriating.

    Well, so maybe he could attack Cliff Stairs Man later.

    Oh wait.

    He could guard his thoughts too.

    Mori sighed.

    This day just gets better and better.

    He’d find a rain cloud to pummel in the mean time.

    "Where there's life, there's hope; and need of vittles."
    -Samwise Gamgee

    #150290
    Mr.Trip Williams
    @jared-williams

    Okay, Hal isn’t taking Abirami all that seriously, but it’s more his perception than Abirami actually being stupid or irrational.

    all good. =) too be expected. Lol. I kinda wrote my piece expecting that =)

     

    let Darkness flow from his hands before snatching the knives from the back of his belt.

    ooh… what’s this darkness power?

    Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.

    #150291
    Denali Christianson
    @denali-christianson

    @jared-williams

    ooh… what’s this darkness power?

    *Cackles evilly* This is the way that Mori plans to take over the world. XD The Darkness is the power that’s taken over Mori’s world and those who serve the Darkness get to “play” with it. The extents of what it can do are unknown, but Mori is especially good at wielding it. One thing he can do (which is what he did to Abirami) is shield his presence and actions from the knowledge of his target. Abirami couldn’t have known he was there (unless he also has a hidden power lol)

    "Where there's life, there's hope; and need of vittles."
    -Samwise Gamgee

    #150580
    Emily Waldorf
    @emily-waldorf

    I seriously have no time for this, but I can’t quite resist the opportunity of posting one of my all -time favorite characters, even if it’s only once.

    Introducing Avin Merrlesby, Duke of Westlyn. (A as in “Cave”; i as in “in”)

    Personality: cool and quiet, with lots of skeletons in the closet, you might say.

    Married to one of the prettiest and most graceful people in Vegada, princess Elsa. With more spunk than a princess is expected to have.

    This only adds to his quiet, reserved nature, because he’s a peasant. And, what’s more, half Colondite. (There’s a lot of racism about Colondites in the current Vegadian culture). Elsa could care less. She knows him to be the sweetest, most kind-hearted and talented man she’s ever met. He’s very good with woodcraft, also.

    Appearence: tall, with mud-brown hair and gray(?) eyes. A chiseled face that is neither handsome nor unhandsome, but has more than it’s fair share of character.

    His back is covered in scars, which he usually doesn’t show, but a few might lace around to his face and peep from under his shoulder-length hair. He wears a ring on a chain around his neck (he keeps hidden inside his clothes) and is bi-lingual.

    IDK if I’m even gonna have time to write him, but I couldn’t keep from introducing my favorite character to y’all. So, there it is!

    Don't cry for me, for I go where music is born ~J.S. Bach

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