fantasy, On-going Stories, The Faceless Queen, World Weavers

The Faceless Queen Part II

Pity and guilt swirl in my belly but I ignore it. I look at all the girls and they were all afraid of me but hid it behind a face of loyalty. They were worthy of so much more.

I look back at Kera and she looks at me with pleading eyes as if she knew I was the faceless one.

She wraps her arms around her, “They keep doing that whenever I ask them. I can’t take it.” She moans, “They’re all brainwashed I know but it hurts to know their being treated this way like cattle to the slaughter.”

I left as soon as she fell asleep cuddled under warm thick blankets. I rushed to my father’s room that night and cried beside him.

Begging that I could not take another face again. So lost in a cloud of tears, that I had not noticed that my father was as blue as his royal robes.

My king was dead.

I ran away, the monster couldn’t be found with the King.

That night was when I truly began to hate myself; creating the excuse that due to my father’s death I had to continue taking faces. I told myself that my father would want me to have a face to rule Eydollon.

I sigh, staring at the spot where the girl had fallen, dead without a face.

I had never known what to do with Kera after that night, knowing she was an unwilling sacrifice.

I had other servants doing what was needed so I had made her my personal servant for I do have a heart although a selfish one.

Perhaps I liked her. A conscious I wished I would listen to.

Using my magic to renew my face took its toll but I use my abilities at times to listen to her thoughts and feelings.

I knew she yearned to go back to her quarters. She seemed to believe she was sent on a mission to save the girls. At first I thought she was a spy.

Until I had seen images in her mind of strange places I have not seen in Eydollon.

I had seen a jungle with tribal men and women living barely clothed, but there was also of a place in her mind that had objects made of metal that played images on its surface and doors that opened into lighted storage filled with food covered in colourful paper and words. I could not ask her about it for she had never spoken about it.

However she had called out a name, Misty, one night, but Misty never came.

Breaking out of my thought I beckon for Kera’s attention.

“Kera, do you read?” I ask.

She nods as her face reddens. “Look at me Kera,” I demand.

She raises her head and I see fire in her eyes and look down at her balled hands.

“You are mad, why?” 

“How can you ask that when you just killed someone moments ago!” She stomps.

I wince but hide it. I turn to my bookstand beside my table, which was littered with letters from the different lords of my kingdom. I would have to get started on replying those soon enough.

I pass her a book, it’s a story illustrated by the enchantress, my stepmother. It was a book about the Shinkami.

“Read this, you might find it interesting.”

She takes the book with a shaking hand.

“Thanks.” She grumbles.

I dismiss her, ignoring her outburst.

Could monsters have friends?

(Catch Part III of the Faceless Queen tomorrow!)

Standard
Prose & Poetry

New Beginnings

I swam my feelings away

The current of my strokes,

my temporary blanket.

To the night sky I stare

a blank slate it says.

Plenty of tomorrow’s for all,

Time to begin again.

-wilnako

Standard
Prose & Poetry

Second Chances

I tore it down and fled the castle

I never thought it could be rebuilt

But here we are with eyes wide open,

hearts bare and broken.

We wore blind mens’ glasses

But finally rage broke the cage wide open

Daggers flew

Twisted

Shoved

And reentered

But now, let’s see what happens.

Pieces to be mended

By questions finally spoken

Answers that bleed the truth

Of the moments old and forgotten.

Now a dagger spins upon the table

The emotions are honest and potent

Where this story goes

Depends upon what the fates have woven.

– wilnako

Standard
fantasy, On-going Stories, World Weavers

The Faceless Queen Part I

The girl who entered my room was smiling, but it was the kind of smile that never reaches the eyes. The kind that twitches in the corner, when all you wanted to do was cry and run from the monster you could not see.

I was the monster in that room.

The girl comes closer and stands in front of me. Her body is shaking, my servant in the corner would not see it from a distance but I could. I stood there with my glistening golden hair flowing down my back in my royal midnight blue robes with a face that was fading at the edges.

The girl’s smile hardens, she was trying so hard to be willing, like all the other girls, always lying in their minds that this was for Eydollon.

“Thank you for your sacrifice,” I say as I cup her face in my hand.

A tear slides down her cheek, and I wipe it all away with a touch.

She falls to the ground, faceless and void of life.

No one could hear it but me, my father’s voice shouting with joy inside my head, beautiful daughter, so whole and bright!

While the voice of the enchantress whispers in reply, if you genuinely do not wish to do it, you would not. Only you can end it.

I tell myself that it was for my people, for Eydollon but deep in the hole inside my heart it was also because I was selfish.

I step away and move to the back of my room, to hide in the shadows of the candlelight.

The doors open and two of my men silently take the girls body away.

I sit at my desk and begin writing a response to a letter that has come from beyond Eydollon.

Eydollon was now my duty; my father moved on to the afterlife, and his wife, my stepmother, an enchantress has disappeared without a word.

The message had come from the Evergreen, a place in Seers Island where rulers from across the world convened.

It was to address a magical dark mist that wiped out a village in a breath. Homes had been charred, but no fire had been created, bodies ripped to shreds and those who survived succumbed to madness until death took them in a sickness that spread like tar through their veins and led them to explode into a black and red cloud, unrecognisable.

Where were its origins? Who had created it? It was a mystery.

I finish writing my response.

“Kera, ask the guards to pass this letter to the Evergreen emissary, ask him to send it by bird,”  I say as I press my father’s ring on the wax to seal the letter.

Kera, a brown-haired, brown-eyed girl takes the letter without glancing up at my new face. How could she?

I recall the moment I had met Kera.

I was tossed inside an elegant room with other young and beautiful women. I had been curious to meet the girls who would die for me.

 As prisoners, the women would have expected to be in the kind of dungeons other kings provided. Smelly dank cells with no food or beds but as the queen, I offered my prisoners with more than just a simple cot or grub, I gave them feasts, luxurious beds, I made them happy the best way I could repay them.

They all had been surprised and had feasted and slept well, but one did not.

It was Kera, and she was different from the other girls.

“Why do you not enjoy the pleasures provided to you?” I asked, she only frowned and played with her food.

“Don’t you want to enjoy it while you can. With your sacrifice, the Kingdom prospers!” As I said this, a girl at the table had overheard and laughed.

“She is not a willing sacrifice; she is an added surprise to please the faceless one.”

Before I could say a word and to my surprise, Kera had spoken up.

“No I am not supposed to be here, that I agree but what disgusts me the most is how you guys can be ok with what’s going to happen to you.”

All the girl’s eyes glaze over.

“I am willing, for the faceless one.” they chant tonelessly.

Pity and guilt swirl in my belly but I ignore it. I look at all the girls, and they were all afraid but hid it behind a face of loyalty. They were worthy of so much more.

I look back at Kera, and she looks at me with pleading eyes as if she knew I was the faceless one.

(Catch Part II of the Faceless Queen tomorrow!)

Standard
fantasy, On-going Stories, Short Story, World Weavers

World Weavers

Introduction:

Part I: The Whipped Lovers

We’re inside a bathroom. No, not the one you’re inside but the one here. It’s a simple bathroom with a bathtub that’s starting to stain and a sink that’s full of water because someone is soaking their undies in it. The thing is, we’re not just in that bathroom. We’re inside the inside of the toilet. Not in the bowl, but in the walls.

If you look closely, you’ll see that the tiles in the bathroom are swirls of colours and sometimes, they look like something, sometimes they are faces, ships, monsters and just unknown creatures that look familiar.

Anyway, in the tiles right beside the rectangular mirror on top of the sink where the floating underwear speckled with flowers are, it’s a swirl of nothing, but if you watch it carefully, it begins to move.

If you’re looking at it and not at the underwear’s, you’d start to see a figure of a girl running towards you. Then slowly a swirl on the tile changes it to a girl again but much closer. This time you can see that behind her she seems to be being chased by an angry mob of half-naked men and women. No, that bunch of naked men and women are not going to appear in the bathroom, although it would be appropriate since their practically naked. They probably smell too since their running.

If you’ve been keeping your eyes on the tiles, you’re seeing the face of a girl, ordinary long brown curls surrounding an oval face with two almond-shaped eyes with natural light brown eyes. You won’t see it now with her face in panic but she is a happy individual, and her name is Kera Golding.

The swirl is shifting even faster, and she’s getting closer, and soon a hand appears through the tile. It’s a living hand like yours with blood coursing through it, but it’s covered in sparkly dust.

Stop.

Let’s s get closer, not to the tile but through it.

We’re standing in a humid jungle surrounded by angry villagers, the ground is soft, and the air smells like damp earth mixed with the sweat pouring out of the angry folks. You can smell the green of the trees, and you should be starting to feel sweat dripping down your back due to the humidity. Even at night here, it was hot.

Kera is disappearing right behind you in a cloud of sparkling mist but let’s rewind, I’m enjoying teasing you too much.

Let’s begin right after the beginning.

Right in the moment when Kera falls hard on the ground behind a hut in a jungle. She was having an ordinary day; she was about to wash her newly bought underwear in the sink of her bathroom.

Kera looks around and doesn’t understand or can even contemplate what is happening. Looking down at her clothes that were supposed to be a black V-neck t-shirt and her pyjama pants were now a sarong wrapped around her waist with a silk short tank top rimmed with beads. Her skin had also changed to a light brown like she’d been tanning for way too long.

A shuffling sound comes from the hut in front of her, and she takes a step closer she peeks through the glassless window and finds a couple all over each other. Kera takes a step back.

“What the freak?!” she shrieks like her eyes had been thrown at with acid. “Where the hell am I!”

Kera looks around and notices a group of people coming fast from the centre of a village, and they didn’t look happy. The men were carrying sticks except for an older man who wore a headdress. He was bare-chested like all the men and some of the women, which made Kera wince.

“Great, angry naked people.” She mumbles to herself. She wonders what she’s supposed to do, were they coming this way for her? It had to be, she was not supposed to be there.

Kera takes off and heads for the trees, thinking if they were out to get her, she could at least hide until they do, but she soon sees they were not after her.

The folk begin to surround the hut and stop there. Kera slips through the trees and moves back near the hut. A man enters and starts to shout as if on cue the rest of the folk begin shouting in a language Kera couldn’t understand, but when she listens closer, she begins to hear a translation going on in her head.

The man pulls a young man and woman out of the hut, and they were wearing nothing. Off course they weren’t.

The elder with the headdress scrunches his face in disappointment, but Kera could see a hint of sadness around his eyes.

“You have broken our custom that dictates, a man and woman who are not married caught together will be whipped and beaten to death.”

The crowd cheers, anger flaming out of their eyes. Men ogle the naked woman’s body as she tries her best to cover herself, but the man holds her enjoying shaking her. Her lover tries to move closer to her to protect her, but the man shoves him to the ground.

“She is dirty now, the Gods and her people must see her dirtied body.” Growls the man holding her exposing her body to the villagers.

Kera watches this through the trees; she could feel her heart pumping with panic. If these people could treat lovers that way what were they to do with an outsider like her, plus, she was no virgin or married. Could they see that kind of thing?

It wasn’t right, either way, she didn’t know the couple, but they did seem to love each other. Although it was shown more towards the physical aspect of love when she saw them, it was their choice.

The crowd drags the lovers into the village and Kera, not knowing why, got the urge to follow them and maybe help them, somehow.

They bring them to a large gathering area in the very centre of the village that is surrounded by plenty of huts in different shapes and sizes. Children were playing there, some were butt naked, Kera begins to understand why. Even with what she was wearing she was sweating under the humid air.

They are tied to poles, and the people surround them. Some mothers begin to drag their curious children away while some leave them to face what is about to happen.

Kera swears out loud when she sees the same man who dragged them out of their hut appear holding something that resembles a whip. The elder with the headdress nods his head.

The man begins to whip the two lovers. Exerting everything he had, extremely mad. He seemed to hit the man hardest, and his eyes going rabid.

At each scream and shout from the lovers, Kera winged and looked away. Kera couldn’t take it and walked away fast, heading back to where it all started.

“Horrid, horrid people! What am I doing here?!” She shouts to the sky.

As she reaches the couple’s hut, she hears something move inside.

With no one around she enters and finds it barren. Except for a sack that was filled with clothes and items that belonged to the couple.

There is a thin bed halfway rolled up, and Kera realised the front of the house was empty unlike the others she saw earlier nearer to centre enter where there were objects that looked like pots hanging from the ceiling and clay bowls by the windows.

They were going to runaway, off course!

Kera sighs, “They just couldn’t keep it in their pants just a while more could they.”

There was nothing here to have caused any movement that she heard earlier.

“Strange.” She mumbles to herself. Then she sees smoke rising from behind the sack. Something was burning, walking around the sack she sees a jar. The jar was burning, it had mud paint scribbled on it. Somehow her mind begins to blur the letters.

Oh, world beyond we seek your help, help us flee with freedoms wings under our feet!

 Kera’s eyes widen at the text revealing itself to her in English.

Could they have accidentally called her with some kind of magic?

Kera begins to pace, realizing maybe she could get back if she helped them but how would helping them do that? As well as how was she to help them without being dragged and whipped along with them if she was caught.

“Hey.” Greeted a voice. Kera looka around but saw no one.

“Up here, weirdo.”

Kera looks up and sees a bat.

“Erm, hello bat?” Kera greets back.

The voice begins to laugh, but it didn’t come from the bat.

“You’re losing your mind Kera.”

Kera crosses her arms across her chest.

“Well, at least I’m much nicer than you.” She taunts.

A bright cloud shimmers and forms itself into a bat.

“Can you see me now?”

“Well, I must be seeing things, cos I see an ugly bat dressed like a fairy.”

Kera snickers.

If a bat could roll its eyes, it would have done so.

The colorful misty bat flew down and changed its form into a cat.

“I guess I must introduce myself. I’m mist an—“

“Noooo, your name can’t possibly be that, could it?” Kera mocks, interrupting the cat.

“I didn’t say that was my name, I was about to explain what I was but since you don’t seem to want to know, I’ll leave that for another time. I’m here to help you, not because I want to but because I have too.”

Kera blushes, she was enjoying poking the bat, cat, mist or whatever it was, forgetting she didn’t know where she was.

“Right, well, how do I get out of here.”

If a cat could smile, it would have at Kera’s question.

“I’m your ticket out of here, but I’m not going to give it to you.” If cats could smirk, it would be smirking right now.

“Why not?!” Kera shouts, “I have no bloody idea why I’m here and why I look like this and why I’m talking to a talking cat that calls itself Misty!”

“I didn’t say my name was Misty and I didn’t even say Misty, I said Mist. You can’t even hear right.” It grumbles.

“What am I doing here Misty?” Kera mutters as she slumps against the wall of the hut.

“My name is not Misty. You’re suppose to help Jerinda and Kol. They called out for help, and you answered.”

Kera shook her head, “No I didn’t, I was washing my—I was doing laundry. I want to go back.”

“Don’t you want to help them?” it asks.

“Off course I do, but I don’t know where I am, how can I possibly help them?”

“I’ll explain it all after you’ve helped them. You don’t have much time. After the couple gets whipped, they will be left there overnight, and tonight there will also be a celebration for the River God and that’s when you can free them.”

“They are going to celebrate to the River God for whipping them?”

“No, it’s a different celebration!”

“Oh I see, so if I help you help them, you will help me get back home?”

“Yes, sort of. They have their creature to help them carry it all. I’ve been keeping an eye on it but I can’t for long.”

The cat then disappears.

Kera, not knowing what else to do, she packs the other items in the room except the smoking jar and heads into the forest.

It doesn’t take long to find the creature; it was an animal she had never seen before. It looked like a moose with an elephant’s body. It was dark grey while its antlers were silver. It had giant pockets made of cloth on either side of its body where she could see the other items that probably belonged to Jerinda and Kol.

“How am I supposed to get on it exactly?” She asks herself out loud.

The creature must have understood her for it brought itself down and Kera caught a short ladder made out of cloth on its side. Taking it before the creature rose again, she soon found herself atop the creature.

After stuffing the other items left in the hut in the less filled pocket, Kera looks around the forest. It was getting dark fast. “Hmm, now to save your owners.”

“You know talking to yourself is a sign that you could be crazy.” Says Misty, appearing on top of the creature’s head as a strange looking bird with a long pink beak and bright green feathers.

“Is that even a real bird?”

“Yes, its one of the creatures from here. As well as the one you are sitting on. Now, the villagers will be at the river, which is quite a distance away from their village. This would be the best time you attract their attention. Perhaps misdirect them after you’ve cut Jerinda and Kol free.”

“Wait, wouldn’t there be guards or something?”

If a bird with a pink beak and green feathers could smile, it would have.

“Yes, that you will have to figure out.” And the bird disappears.

“You know birds are meant for flying not disappearing!” Kera shouts into the forest.

Kera hides behind the trees near the center of the village, she could see Jerinda and Kol but barely, the clouds were currently covering the moon. The villagers had left no fire for them. There was only one man with them, and he was the one who dragged them out of their hut.

He was talking to Kol.

“She was meant to be my wife, brother. Now neither you nor I can have her. It is such a waste, she is, was beautiful.”

“She is still beautiful to me.” Kol replies proudly but it earns him a bash in the head knocking him out.

The man walks over to Jerinda, even in the dark Kera could see his teeth as he leers at Jerinda.

“You chose wrongly woman. Soon you will die and die ugly. Scars that the Gods will see and bar you from entering their gates.”

Jerinda was either too weak to reply or had no time too before the man grabbed her chin and yanked her head to face him.

“You should have chosen me!” he spat to her face.

Jerinda weakly smiles at the man, earning awe from Kera.

“I chose correctly, fate led us to be together and your anger will only feed the flames of where you will go at your death.”

The man howls into the night but did not hit her.

“Foolish, arrogant woman! I was a fool to ever think you were worthy to be my wife. Tomorrow I will rid of both of you and it will not be a swift death.”

Jerinda didn’t bother with a reply, angering the man but before he could hit her the elder with the headdress appears.

“Come Ero, leave them be. They have paid for their sins and more tomorrow. You must not forget it is time to visit the river; our God will not be pleased if your pettiness distracts you. They will not go anywhere with their blood dripping down their backs and their bodies tied. Come.”

The elder leaves followed by Ero who glares at their direction but no one is looking, not even Kera, distracted by a cloud of mist with sparkling light forming just a few steps away from her.

“It’s the door out of here, you can leave all this behind and just go home to washing your flowery underwear.” Mocks the mist.

Kera looks back at the tied up couple, they didn’t deserve what happened to them but who was she to save them. She was just Kera Golding, proud loner.

“Why are you doing this to me?” she asks but Misty doesn’t reply.

She knew what she had to do. “Go away Misty, you’re sparkling too much, you’re giving me a headache.”

Misty cheers and disappears, the mist sucks out of the air like a vacuum.

Kera checks the couple again to see if anyone else was there to guard him or her but no one was there.

Kera goes up to them to find their backs shattered by the whip. How they were still able to talk and think was beyond her understanding.

Quickly untying Jerinda, Kera overestimates her strength and they both fall onto the ground but Kera takes the blunt protecting Jerinda’s back.

“Sorry sorry sorry, did not think this through properly.” Kera struggles to lift Jerinda up to stand on her own feet.

“Who are you?” Jerinda asks as she adjusts herself awkwardly fighting the burning pain on her back.

“I’m Kera, I was sent to help you guys. I realize I’m not doing so well at it.”

“Hello Kera, give me some time, and I will be able, go to him.”

Kera heads to Kol but he is knocked out cold. Kera gently shakes him hoping to wake him.

“Umm, Kol, Mister Kol, please wake up. Hello, Mister —“ Kol wakes up calling out Jerinda’s name.

“I’m here my love, someone has sent us help. Do you think you can walk?”

“I will not unless I am untied.” He replies.

“Sorry, sorry, its just, you’re naked and I’m not sure if you can carry yourself…” Kol looks up at Kera, “I will be able to carry myself, do not worry.”

Kera shrugs, “Ok if you say so but I’m sorry if I don’t catch you. I just don’t want your body parts falling on me, if you know what I mean.”

“I do not know what you mean.” He replies as his body heads for the ground but Kera grabs an arm and Kol grabs hold of the pole.

“Thank you, I did not expect to be that weak.” He looks up to the sky. “We must go soon, the celebratory ritual by the river will not be long.”

Kera takes a peak inside huts while they gain feeling back in their legs and stole bits of food and a jug of water.

“Here you go guy.” They nod their thanks and as she watches them eat Kera had a feeling they weren’t going to make it in time to their ride. She needed to stall the angry crowd somehow.

“Erm, the angry people, were they angry because of what you guys did or is there more?” Kera asks.

Kol’s face darkened but Jerinda answers, “We were caught in each others arms. This is against our custom if we are not married. Although it doesn’t help that Kol, is Ero’s brother who is to be the next chief of our village. He has always been jealous of our close friendship since young.”

“Who are you?” Kol asks, “We have never seen you in our village although you look like one of our people but yet you speak like a stranger. Are you a God in disguise?”

Kera chuckles, “Me? A God?” she laughs louder causing her tummy aching, “No, no, I am not a God, I am just lost. I am from another place.”

“So you are a messenger of a new God? We had prayed for a new god, one who would understand our dilemma and help us. Perhaps you are a messenger.”

“No, no I am no God’s messenger. I’m too much of a free thinker to be any God’s messenger. Not very loyal to any so no, but if I was, I would say you guys better get going to your antlered beasty in the forest and move fast. I’m going to try and find a way to distract the villagers. Somehow.”

Jerinda smiles lost in thought, “A freethinker, I think that is a God of it’s own.”

Kera shrugs, “Whatever you want to believe. You guys better go though, honestly, can you guys do it on your own?”

Kol stands as straight as he could, helping Jerinda. “Yes we can, for we have each other. We also have ointments that can help us in our sacks. We will survive, we owe our thanks to you freethinker. “

Kera nervously laughs, “Ugh, thanks thanks, no problemo, just doing what I can. I’ll head to the river, I’ll try to follow the path Ero took?”

Jerinda nods, “It is just down the path behind the village huts, you will hear the river and it will guide you. Thank you again, I will send some thanks to your God, freethinker.”

Kera watches them as they head to their antlered creature, walking as fast as they could but they were not going to make it if she didn’t distract the villagers, especially grumpy jealous Ero.

Kera heads to the river. She could just barely hear the water crashing on rocks.

The villagers were standing at the river’s edge. They had moved down stream where the water was gentler. They had created a bridge made of rope and tree branches and at the middle was the elder with the headdress and Ero. They were all chanting in their language.

Kera looks around but she couldn’t figure out how she was going to deter them from heading to the village to soon. Should she start a fire? But that would hurt the trees and she didn’t want to kill anything or anyone.

Maybe start dancing naked, but she had a feeling that wouldn’t draw much attention for long, most of the villagers were practically naked.

What pissed them off in the first place was an unwed couple getting touchy; she wasn’t that particular about kissing some random villager but that would get that guy in trouble.

Kera sighs. “What the freak am I suppose to do?” she hisses to herself.

She could act like a God, Kera laughs at the thought. Looking like one of them would totally throw that off. That was another thing, how was it she looked like one of them. Why couldn’t she be herself?

“Having trouble?” someone murmurs, Kera looks around but could not see anything but an insect on a leaf. She could barely see it in the dark.

“Is that you Misty? You can transform into any thing right? I think I have an idea, but I’ll need your help.”

“Why should I help you?” the insect answers.

“You got me here now you have to help me get out, or I’ll squash you, you are an irritating bug.”

“That’s not a nice way to talk to someone you need help from. I could just disappear you know.”

“You do that all the time anyway. Fine, I need you to become a guy, but first, we need to go further down, farther away from the village.”

“For your information, I am a—“ he began but Kera walks away.

“No time for chatter chitter bug.”

“I could just leave her.” He grumbles to himself before he disappears.

Kera slips through the crowd, who watches her with confusion in their eyes. They have never seen this girl before. Kera tries to join in their chanting but she just sounded off from their voices.

She had a bad feeling she was going to get caught.

Slipping further away at the edge of the crowd, Kera let out a relieved sigh but chokes on it when she catches Ero watching her. She felt like his eyes were sending out invincible lasers through her body.

“Oh-oh, should I stay or should I go now?” she hums under her breath looking away from Ero. Maybe I didn’t need a plan; they were already looking ready to hunt her.

Looking up again, the elder with the headdress opens his eyes, the chant was over, and beside him, Ero was starring daggers at her as he instantly walks towards her.

“Yep, I didn’t need a plan.” And Kera ran into the forest as fast as she could. Thankfully the moon was full, and the clouds had disappeared, its light showered rays through the treetop.

She couldn’t help wonder, they were a tribe, could they run really fast? Like super fast? This place seemed magical, or could they climb and swing through the trees like Tarzan?

“Shiiiiiiit!” shouts Kera as she ran; this was a horrible plan she thought, it wasn’t a plan!

Through the trees, Kera saw it, the similar cloud of mist with sparkling lights forming in the distance.

“Can’t you bring it closer you twit!” she shouts at the mist.

Kera looks behind and she could see Ero not far behind as well as the villagers. She couldn’t see the river anymore or the village. At least she did her job, she could barely breath properly, her lungs were on fire, and she could feel her legs wobbling. She needed to exercise more when she got back.

She takes a leap, and she’s gone, the mist disappears as if sucked into the air like a vacuum.

In the distance far from the village, Jerinda puts ointment on Kol’s back and hears a familiar roar. They both smile, they were free and from Ero’s howl, so was their freethinker.

We’re back in the ordinary bathroom with the over soaked underwear. Now we know Kera owns those underwear. Who, right now, is lying on the bathroom floor asleep in her black V-neck t-shirt and pajama pants, I would like to say she was drooling but I’ll tell her that when we meet.

Standard
fantasy, On-going Stories, The Moon that Never Sets

The Moon that Never Sets

Natalie could feel the sand crusting under her nails, but she knew it was a little bit farther down. The sand around her was slowly sliding down; nothing to worry about it was normal.

Today the sand was golden, she felt like she was digging in a treasure trove. Natalie laughs with glee. At that point, the sand under her knees begins to change into glass. Natalie has reached the bottom of the hole.

The glass is so smooth Natalie stumbles as she tries to sit up sending her tumbling back down making Natalie scream with joy.

“Hello there princess! It is quite lovely to see you again.” Beams a little glass boy.

“Kai! I’m oh so happy to see you! How have you been?”  Natalie hugs Kai carefully.

“I’ve been on an adventure, I’ve seen monstrous beasts eating majestic ships, mermaids singing men to sleep and little sea elf’s making glass necklaces. I got one for you.”

Kai holds out a colourful mass of sea glass strung into a necklace. Natalie gently took it from him, and her eyes glisten and sparkle with the glass.

“Oh, Kai, they are beautiful, all my friends in school would be oh so jealous of me! Thank you thank you!”

Kai beams at her praise. “How have you been little Princess?”

Natalie groans, “I’ve told you plenty, please don’t call me little, you make me sound like a baby! I’m sure I’m older than you.”

Kai laughs, “But you are so small!”

“Am not! Anyway, my father is off on another adventure and mother has followed. I would be free to roam our home again, and I was thinking of inviting you if you would like to come?”

Kai shakes his head, “I cannot leave the hole and the beach, and you know this for we have tried plenty. Those times were as painful as it will be if we try.”

Natalie sighs, “Yes I suppose, but it would have been impolite if I had not asked.”

Kai smiled, “Thank you for your invitation Princess, I am greatly honoured but I must politely decline. It is time anyway for a story! Would you like to hear it?”

Natalie nodded eagerly, “Is it about the monstrous beast swallowing ships whole?”

Kai shakes his head as he lies down on the golden sand, shimmering against the minuscule crystals in the sand making him look glittery.

“It is of a hero who saved people from a gigantic snake monster. It had fangs thick as a tree trunk and as sharp as a knight’s sword. It was the size of a mountain!”

Natalie slips beside Kai, lying down against him, he was warm from the heat of the sand. Kai was from another place, he guarded something special. He has told Natalie that he comes all the way from the moon’s heart. Although the moon was so far, she was amazed at how it made him feel warm. She loved his warmth; she found it comforting. It made her feel protected.

Natalie dozes off, and Kai watches her for a while then pats her head and dissolves into the glass beneath them. The glass floor shimmers away.

Natalie wakes up to an empty hole, she must have dozed of and Kai could only stay above for so long. She could hear the lapping waves in the distance and the yapping of dogs. Amongst it was the shouting of her name being called. It was time to go back to the big white empty house.

Natalie climbed out of the hole, sand was in every little crease of her dress and skin.

Squinting towards the voice calling her name, she sees Katrina, her face was red with heat, and her brow was scrunched with anger. Catching sight of Natalie Katrina waves her over urgently.

Natalie quickly walks over with her tiny legs, Katrina crosses her arm across her chest and watches Natalie, her brows scrunching even deeper creating more lines on her forehead.

Her lips thin as if she is trying to hold back something she wants to say but it doesn’t take long.

“Natalie Golding, how dare you?” Katrina demanded. Natalie scratches her arm and looks down at the sand.

“I’m sorry Katrina, I fell asleep and Kai didn’t wake me up,” Natalie explains rubbing sand off her dress guiltily.

Katrina harrumphed, “Come, you must get cleaned up quickly, Lord Bard has come to take you for a few weeks. Your father has asked him a favor. Your things have been packed, as always.”

A dark cloud forms around Natalie’s shoulders. A part of her wanted to scream and kick. See what happens if she let Katrina drag her home to Lord Bard.

Natalie was a daughter of a lord who was well renowned and respected by the aristocrats and the peasants equally. He was an explorer, and he has travelled all around the world.

Natalie’s home was filled with artifacts and stories and she loved them all, but what she longed for most was never at home. Her parents were constantly away. That is why she was not surprised Lord Bard was there to take her away again.

Natalie enters her home, walks past the doors to her parent’s private workrooms. It was where all the fragile artifacts and their shelves of journals were stored.

Natalie smiled at the memory when she had slipped in there once before. The artifacts seemed to come alive. The statue of a naked woman holding a baby had smiled at her. There was a giant metal rhino that had snorted at her and she had gotten scared. It was ten times her size but it had simply nuzzled her gently.

Her favorite would have been the crystal queen, she was beautiful and elegant; she had bowed at Natalie and she was the queen!

There were other sturdier artifacts around the house; there was the massive painting of mountains in the dining hall where there was a dragon breathing fire at the town’s people.

As well as the little trolls on different mantles across the home. Natalie had a feeling they moved around by themselves for they always seemed to be different trolls every time she looked.

There were old scrolls as well in the stairwell, scrolls with old writings but some had pictures of gods. There were beautiful lady gods in gowns that draped across their body, not fully covered. There were of men who seemed angry all the time.

Natalie cleans up quickly and is brought to a room where Lord Bard drank and spoke to a mysterious man.

“My Lord Bard, it is lovely to see you again.” Natalie greets with a curtsy.

Lord Bard was a tall, handsome man, he had a chiseled chin with a mustache Natalie liked to imagine to be the one talking and not Lord Bard himself for it moved an awful lot to be just hair on a face.

“My my, you’ve grown up so fast little lady! Had I not only seen you a few weeks back?” he asks taking into a big tight hug.

Natalie beams, “Yes Lord Bard, you let me ride one of your ships and it was marvelous! Are we going to do that again?”

Lord Bard laughs putting her down, “We will have to see, and I’ll try to find a way. For you Natalie, anything.”

He takes her hand and brings Natalie towards the mysterious man. “Come I would like you to meet Lord Marvik; he is also a Captain of his own ship. Just like your father. He has a young daughter just like you, and she is eager to meet you.”

Natalie curtsied, “Hello Lord Marvik, its nice to meet you.” Lord Marvik had a scar on his face, from his right cheek to his chin he would have looked scary, but he seems kind enough, smiling down at her and patting her head gently.

“Did you get that scar saving somebody Lord Marvik, is it a heroic tale?”

Lord Marvik chuckles, “You are a curious little one aren’t you, you and my daughter will get a long well. Perhaps Diana will tell you the story herself. She was the one I had to save.”

Natalie’s eyes grew round; “She was with you on your adventure?” Lord Marvik nods, “Yes, she and her mother.

Natalie feels a twinge, “That sounds lovely.” Envy swirling in her chest.

“I best get ready, are we going soon?”

Lord Bard has a sad look in his face; he nods and lets her go.

Lord Marvik looks at Lord Bard, “I assume, Francis and Genevieve do not take Natalie on their trips?”

Lord Bard sighs, “No, they are afraid she will get hurt. She is a unique child, very different from your daughter who tends to be sharper in situations. Natalie lives in a different world I would say.”

Lord Marvik frowns, “I have a feeling she is more than that.”

Natalie goes to her room and finds all her things packed and ready to go. She sits sadly on her trunk elbows on her legs, her hands cupping her face.

If her parents would only take her on trips too. Fight monsters and discover new ones. She had begged, screamed and cried but they were adamant. Always so adamant it was not safe.

Katrina comes into the room and ushers her out.

“Time to go.”

They travel for days, the ocean growing farther away.

She wonders how Lord Marvik’s daughter was like. From what she could tell about Lord Marvik, it was that he was an accomplished explorer just like her parents. Also that he loves his daughter very much for he takes her with him on adventures.

“Natalie, you are awfully quiet. Is there something the matter?” Lord Bard pats Natalie’s hands.

Lord Marvik watched Natalie and senses a more mature mind behind her sweet-like exterior. It would not be surprising due to her having to spend so much time with adults regularly.

“I am fine Lord Bard, thank you for asking. I was simply thinking about mother and father and their adventures. Hoping they are alright.”

“Ah I see, what a dear child. I am sure they are fine. They always watch each other’s backs. They are on their adventure, and you will soon be too.”

Lord Marvik, nods to Lord Bard’s words, “My daughter has a great love of the sea and goes looking for sea glass every morning. Perhaps you can join her.” He added.

Natalie smiles, she did love the sea. She loved being in the water. She loved to think she was secretly a mermaid who lost all her memory or was a little fish exploring the big ocean.

Looking out the carriage window, Natalie gazes out the window and she points at the moon in the distance delighted to see it through the trees, “The moon is much brighter the closer we get, and everything around it seems less dark!” she cheers.

“You shouldn’t be pointing at the moon. There is a story that if you did you would receive a cut behind your ear. That means you were visited by the moon.”

Natalie tilted her head, curious, “Why would the moon do that for?”

“Some say that the moon is the guardian of the ocean, when it phases it controls the waters levels. To point at the moon would draw the moons attention and its momentum would be altered causing a shift in the water. The moon doesn’t like to be distracted from its purpose. I think the cut behind the ear would be a warning.” Lord Marvik answers.

“That’s just a story isn’t it?”

“Perhaps.”

The next morning Natalie wakes up to a strange feeling she’s being watched. The sky was grey blue and clouds hid the rising sun. Looking around her carriage, she found both lords sleeping uncomfortably in their seats and no one else.

She then feels a stinging behind her left ear. Touching the back of her ear, it is wet. She draws her hand away and sees blood on her fingertips. Her eyes grow round, and she stands to look out the window. The moon was still visible, and it was glowing so bright.

“Natalie, is there something wrong?” Lord Bard stirs from his sleep.

Natalie takes one last look at the moon and sits back down on her seat. “No Lord Bard, I was just taking a peak outside.”

Lord bard himself takes a peek outside, “Ah yes its morning, and from the looks of the lands we shall be reaching Lord Marvik’s home.”

Natalie barely heard the lord lost deep in her thoughts. The moon had sent her a warning, but she wonders why now? She had pointed at the moon before plenty of times.

She begins to worry that she had caused the moon to be distracted and hurt some people out there. Her heart speeds up; her parents were aboard a ship, could she have caused her parents to die?

“Little Natalie why do you look so frightened, my home is safe.” Lord Mavrik shifts uncomfortably in his seat rubbing his back.

“I have a cut behind my ear and my parents are out at sea.” She looks at Lord Mavrik clenching her hands tightly on her lap.

Lord Mavrik was not sure how to react, if she had received a cut behind her ear, it would mean Natalie was more than just a little girl.

“They should be fine, they are well seasoned travellers.” He answers; he had more important things to worry about. If she is what he believes she is, he had to find out more about her past. It all made sense why her parents did not bring her on their voyages. They must know.

Natalie nods, believing Lord Marvik’s words. It was more comforting than the feeling she had in her stomach.

As Lord Bard said, they reach Lord Marvik’s home soon enough. He had a large mansion bigger than Lord Bard’s and the lands around it were full of trees.

Natalie could smell the ocean, which calmed her; perhaps she could visit it and have a talk with Kai. Maybe he had news about her parents.

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