Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Charles and Mortis: Memories Drift In And Out Of My Mind, And the Little People Get Left Behind

A group of men were seated around a long table. Twelve men, bickering in French. The tallest one, with hair to his waist, was carving into the marble top with something that resembled a compass. He was staying quiet, keeping his eyes to the ground. He didn't want to join in.
"I'm telling you, I've seen nothing." Rene insisted, crossing his toned arms.
"You were right there!" Enrageant practically screamed. "You had to have seen something, a flash of the man's face! The weapon!"
"I saw nothing!"
Moyen sighed, finishing the sigil he was carving into the table.
Jasmin pinched the bridge of his nose. "I believe him when he says he saw nothing."
"Of course." Hissed Benjamin. "Because the detective knows everything."
"I know quite a lot more than you." He raised his hand in a fist for silence before Ben could interrupt. "We are not here to lay blame on Rene."
"Thank you!"
"We're here for fishsticks." Jalousie decided, smirking. There was a collection of exasperated groans.
"This is no time for jokes." Charles Fiable scolded.
"Sorry." The blond Necromancer mumbled, grinning still.
Poupee hit him and heaved a sigh. Jalousie kept laughing.
"No, we are here to think things through logically." Jasmin stated loudly before more arguing could happen. "People have gone missing and been killed, and we have to figure out why this has happened and who has done this, and I'm only asking your help as you are affected..."
Traq spoke up next. He was shuffling a deck of playing cards. "Well, some of us are."
The knife in Moyen's hand slipped, slicing open his palm and he jumped up with a shriek. All the others looked to him, and he apologised softly, looking to be on the verge of tears. Charles got up to help him. They discussed quietly.

It was this conversation that now played in Charles' head as he stood, feeding baby Oro in the dead of night. There was a faint wind outside, and all he could hear was the faint chatter of that obnoxious Canadian man. Then something particular came to him.
With every twist and turn there is a sharp drop or incline. As for him, a weakness is clear, apparent. We just haven't been looking in the right place.
Charles scowled, thinking. Moyen was not often the wise man of the group, but slowly it dawned on him. Every man had a weak spot, and with a little thought, suddenly the Frenchman had realised Mevolent's.


A group of men were seated around a long table. In the corner sat a very young man, only about 47. Mastered Necromancy the previous year, no interest in all the Death Bringer nonsense. He just adored death and whatnot. Even so, he was becoming a soldier. A war was inbound, and Phil, with his long black hair tied back with a custard yellow ribbon, was eager to fight against the nutters looking to end the world, simply to spill the blood.

He was an attractive young man and two blonde girls had their eyes on him, but his eyes were fixed on a man sat opposite him, younger than him but looked older. He stood as the meeting ended and walked off, keeping his head down. The younger yet older man, with dark skin, tapped him on the shoulder and instantly, a knife was at his throat. He gulped. "M-Mortis...?"
Mortis glared a moment, then put away the knife. "I don't remember your name."
"Jayden. Zebulon's brother."
"I remember. You were trying to kill her the same time I was."
"Whatever. Redhead got him in the end." He decided not to mention that the redhead and his science magic friend had taken over his house after saving his life.
"Good for him."
"You remembered my name."
Jayden bit his lip and nodded. "I'm very good with names. Redhead was called Garnet, right?"
Mortis nodded. "Well remembered."
"It's nice to see you again."
He shrugged. "Whatever."
"...I don't remember you being that friendly back then either."
"Shut up. I don't remember you being so damn attractive."
"What?" He stopped walking and turned to face the Child of the Spider.
"...You have something in your eye...it's watering..."
"It's nothing."
Jayden started walking again. "You're very good-looking yourself, Mortis."
"You what now?" He jogged to catch up.
"You heard me."
"Are you flirting with me?"
"Maybe. Depends on whether you like it or not."
Mortis scowled. "Peh."
Then the most outrageous noise came from the ruthless killer's throat when the dark-skinned man squeezed his butt, and he gave him the 'I am so going to kill you' look before pinning him to the wall...and kissing him.

Mortis remembered that clearly. His favourite song at the time was called 'I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles'. Now it was 'Beasts' by Slow Moving Millies, and that was the song that filled the dusty air from his pocket and he lay beneath the chunk of masonry, life being squeezed out of him. Nobody knew that number...nobody but Garnet Dorado...and he reached for his pocket, doing his best to get the phone into vision, and pressed a button. A voice filled the air. Singing. Joyful, bouncy singing. A rendition of I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles by someone he didn't know.

Behind him, Richard sat, trying to save Jayden from the brink of death, and Hiro stood by the glowing cradle.
"It...it's a doll..." He muttered in disbelief, and it was. It was a doll, with a face twisted in agony, painted to look like a charred corpse. He lifted it up and all the light went out, an odd ticking sounding out as though a fast piece of clockwork had just been freed to function, followed by a low rumbling. Looking around, terrified, Hiro ran for the door, desperately, running for the sound of a woman singing over the sound of a crackling record playing old music, the kind you would hear in the loading screens of Bioshock.

Mortis had not known the lyrics to this. In fact, it appeared these were lyrics added by a football club, but the sweet sounds flowing back to his ears, filling what he feared were his last moments with memories of his first kiss with Jayden Slander. Then, darkness, that blessed music playing...and silence when his eyes opened to a blinding light...

Monday, June 23, 2014

Scarlett Discord: I forgot These Guys Existed

A group stood around a man who sat cross-legged on the floor, blindfolded. Sandy Milschman, his name was. Dark brown hair, fair skin, Dutch by birth. He moved his head as though he were looking at each person around him in turn. He didn't know them, not in the slightest. The German brother and sister stood opposite one another, the brother balancing a toddler on his hip. Lionel sat in the corner, away from the circle, head bound in thick bandages. Monotone was dead, and so no longer controlled Elder Ame, and so he was released. Himself. On other opposites were Scarlett and Drakon, with Aurora tucked awkwardly between Scarl and Wilhelm.

Sigmund Drakon was a small man, roughly the same size as his older sister, skinny and hunched over, but even at full height he was shorter than his younger brother, Wilhelm. He was used to being the strongest in the room and the man who felt no hits, as was his type of magic, but he only chose such magic to combat the health complaints, of which he had many. His tousled hair was a sunny blonde with the tips of his fringe dyed flaming red, eyes bright and blue, and flickering between everyone in the room, watching like a hawk, learning their weaknesses. Not that there were many to learn from their outward appearances. What he saw was blind man, man who was bound and blindfolded, his sister with the weak spot on her back, his brother, who was afraid of him, the girl and the man in the robes of a Grand Mage. He was not amused, stood between his siblings and in this room of strange people. He liked the toddler though. Drakon had a soft spot for infants. Wilhelm looked up and the brothers' eyes locked, and Drakon excused himself politely from the group and pulled his little brother away.
"You've lost weight."
"I know." Wilhelm was his usual terrified self, the same guy since the last 14 years passed since the brothers had last spoken. The resemblance between Scream and Drakon was unsettling. The difference between them was Drakon's blond hair and their different noses. Drakon's was flatter.
"Your finger..."
"It...doesn't matter..."
"No, who took it?"
"It doesn't matter..." He wasn't used to his brother being so nice, and clearly he was very unnerved. Drakon shook his head and nodded to what he assumed was his nephew. Wilhelm carefully passed the child over, which he had refused to do for Aurora.

Meanwhile, the others spoke to Sandy. Scarlett crouched down and undid the blindfold, tucking it into the back of his trousers. The Dutch man smiled at him.
Aurora piped up. "I'm sorry, exactly why are we in this stupid crazy house with no..."
"Sense-making?" Lionel pitched in, receiving a glare for his efforts. He glared back, shrugging his shoulders, which were the shoulders clad in the Grand Mage robes.
"Yeah, this place still makes no sense."
Rabe walked away for a moment so she could draw up a chair and shrugged. "Well, we're here because here Mevolent cannot get to us. No man can come in unless someone from inside expressly allows their entrance, which we are unlikely to do to Mevolent or his generals."
"But," Sandy mumbled, "one man inclined to that side gets in and he can let any others of their kind in."
"We're not letting anyone else in. Only people who specifically I like, trust or who happen to be the mother of my nephew."
The Dutch man's eyebrow shot up. "You what?"
"I neither like nor trust Aurora, but she's had my brother's kid." She shrugged, glaring at the woman in question. Sandy squirmed in discomfort. Scarlett decided to step in before Aurora could start to argue, and she was definitely about to argue.
"We do have a plan, miss Jane!"
"What plan?"
"Well, not all the instrumental players in it are here yet-"
"Well tell me or I'm leaving."
Scarl looked to the others for help and Drakon walked over, his nephew on his shoulder, tugging at his hair. He took a quick and casual breath from an inhaler before telling her exactly what was going down.
"Right here, right now, we are in the home of my friend Davidd O'Taerah, otherwise known as the Impossible Man, hence the...complexity of this place...as such we have in our hands what may well be a powerful weapon and a heavily armoured base. As such, we are the best defended rebellion against Mevolent, despite being in a heavily-Mevolent occupied area. Attempts to escape may be dangerous, but we have tunnels to and fro another impossible house. The possibilities are endless, but for now our plan? Secure countries on the cusp of falling to our side. We start with France, England, Germany, Romania, ones that won't be too difficult to save and that we can directly affect with the group we have with us."
Aurora took a moment to take it in, and nodded. Drakon was one of those men people trusted and respected, he just had that feel about him...in fact, despite the slight wheezing and the toddler in his hair, he had a military feel about him. Apart from the scar on his cheek and the broken nose, he was rather attractive. Plus, his point wasn't a bad one.

Then the door burst open, causing everyone to jump, and even tearing screams from Wilhelm and Lionel, which in turn set baby Kristian off crying. There stood a chubby man with dark hair, glasses and the kind of face that was cute in a young child sort of way. "Y'alright, Sigmund?" The man called in an Irish accent. Drakon placed his hand to his forehead and groaned.
"Always the grand and ridiculous entrances, Davidd..."


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Mortis Grievance: Away in a Manger

A Graveyard in the south of Ireland:

Mortis was cold. He didn't like cold. He was huddled up, back against a headstone, coat pulled tight around him. Plus now his nose was running, which was just embarrassing. His dark eyes scanned the boneyard, looking for his associates. Why exactly they were in a graveyard, he wasn't certain. Demon-face had not specified. He could not see anyone's faces, but he could feel his magic building up, looking for an outlet. It was strong here. Of course it was, all that death. He took a deep breath and blew it out slowly, digging his feet into the old disturbed earth, no care for the body underneath. No use now. Just a sack of rotting guts and dusty bones. He glanced up as Hiro approached and sneezed. He had a rather cute sneeze. He hated it. Even more so when the Asian man sniggered.
"I think we're meant to go into the old Necromancy temple. The one you studied at."
Mortis stared for a moment before nodding and scrambling to his feet. "Where is it?"
"Over there." He answered with a lazy gesture. They went over, where Jayden was jimmying the doors open with a crowbar.
"Why are we going in here?"
Jay looked round. "Are you okay? You sound sick."
"Shut up and get the damn door open." He brushed some of his hair back. He was freezing, but he was sweating enough for his hair to stick to his pale forehead. Okay, definitely quite sick, Mortis thought to himself. Great. Chances were Franz wouldn't let him take sick leave either.

The only light in the dark halls was provided by a cigarette lighter held by Ricky. It wasn't much, but it was something at the very least. They could see barely a foot in front of their faces, and for the eighth time Garnet and Mortis collided and snapped at one another. "Shut up..." Ricky hissed under his breath. His eyes strained through the darkness until something custard yellow flicked in front of his face a few times before catching alight. The murderous man had set fire to his hair ribbon. At least it cast a bit more light. Ricky surged forward, tripped on a rock-like thing on the floor and cried out as something snapped. His breath came in fast, short bursts. Moving the burning ribbon showed he had managed to break his ankle bad enough for the bone to break the skin. Great. That wouldn't go down well. Those still standing exchanged glances. Now what?

Garnet was not happy. He smelled of rotting flesh, he had a stupid idiot of a healer latched onto his shoulder and shaking his whole body with every hop. There was a cold breeze and thick, black hair was blowing in his eyes. He preferred being dead to being Franz' lapdog.

Mortis found his eyes drawn to a door with familiar markings. He wasn't at all sure where he had seen them before. Perhaps in a dream. He gripped the handles of the door and pulled, and found it was locked. He pushed and the door groaned against his feathery weight. He gestured for his boyfriend to come over, who was much weightier, and they rattled the doors. They still had no clue what they were supposed to be doing, so checking every room would be a good idea. Hiro was crouched over the dead body of a Necromancer killed a few years ago by Melancholia, which was why neither man expected the shadows to suddenly slam through the door and stab everyone in the room.

Wood went everywhere. That was the first thing Mortis noticed. A large piece had splintered into his right eye and he fell back. He didn't see the shadow tentacles shoot out, but he sure did feel it stab through his belly and slice his spine as it burst out of his back. His feet no longer brushed against the floor and he could already feel himself passing out.

Jayden screamed when the door exploded, but his scream was cut short and turned to a pained, choked gurgle. The shadow stabbed him through the throat and he felt his life slipping away from him...

Hiro brought up a wall of shadows to protect himself, and the tentacle bounded off, hovered opposite him a moment and tried to strike again. He fought valiantly to protect himself, but finally his panic took hold, he made a mistake, the tentacle sliced across his face and he screamed.

Ricky and Garnet had no time to react, and both screamed, Richard's howls of pain mixing with Garnet's screams of fear. All men were on their knees. Hiro was sure his nose was hanging on by just one scrap of flesh. Mortis was hyperventilating. He could see inside the room now. There was a crib-like thing, full of straw, on a star drawn into the ground, which was surrounded by sigils and glowing blue. For some reason the only thing he could think of was a Christmas carol. Dust fell onto his head. He was bent double in pain, so his long hair hid his pained face, but looking up he saw the cracks in the ceiling. Hyperventilation got worse.

Oh god He thought, this is it. I'm going to die. And for the first time in a very long time, Mortis cried out of sorrow and fear, tears trickling down his face. He was not yet aware of the state of Jay. He just knew the ceiling was about to fall on him...

Five men trapped underground, under dirt and brick and metal. Alive or dead? Dead or alive? Who knows? What ever will happen?