Fantasy, Writing

A Gift from the Soule

It doesn’t seem like it’s October already. I ended up moving and having so much come up I didn’t write very much. *coughatallcough*

In any case, now things are settling down, I feel the muse bugging me to write again. Ideas have begun to swirl about and I feel the anticipation and excitement of writing. Or at least, that’s how it feels to me. In any case, I won’t be doing a word prompt today, but just the writing exercise of writing and writing for about a page or two. Writing is a much needed break from chickens, gardening, cleaning, moving, schooling, and a host of who knows what I’ve been doing, most of which I’ve forgotten already.

 

 

Staring into the darkness of night, he couldn’t help but feel it had changed. The welcoming folds of night had abandoned him. What had once been his playground, his domain, was empty. It had felt like he had belonged matched only by other predators of the night. Now, as he stood just inside the city limits, he was unsure. Emotions had once been a thing of the past, but now they rushed up threatening to overwhelm him. It was back in the courts when he had last reigned his emotions in putting up his aristocratic mask for all to see, controlled, calm, calculating, stoic.

 

He was so unused to this when it bubbled up he was incredibly distracted with it. His senses telling him what was going on became muddled and useless. Or else, he would have heard him approach.

 

“Wilhelm.” The decidedly male voice broke the almost silence of night. “Master.”

 

He turned around to face his shadow. The other eager waited for any sign his master was approving. His muscles seemed to tremble like a hound ready to be loosed upon the foxes.

 

Even this seemed, changed. His fight with the witch had done more than he had expected. Her range of power had grown since he had last fought her a century ago.

 

“Maxwell of Derlington.” He took a breath. His shadow visibly shivered at the sound of his voice. It was his gift, as all Old Ones had though they differed based on what seemed to be their upbringing. The gift of the thrall was his. If one didn’t know better, they would assume Maxwell was in love with him. “How has my Shadow been doing?” He asked putting his hands behind him in his favored courtly pose.

 

“While you were away, I kept threats away and your cattle fed.” Max’s voice had become breathy. His black hair fell into his face unable to stay behind his ear as he held his bow. Only when his master motioned for him to be at ease did he straighten. “There was only one stray vampire that had infringed on your territory, but he was easily subdued.”

 

Wilhelm turned strolling forward prompting his shadow to take several quick steps to fall into pace beside but behind him. “Good. It would not have been good to lose my territory while I fought the bigger threat.” His heart beat harshly as he remembered the desperate battle of wills. The Witch tried forcing his hand. In the end, it hadn’t mattered. She was, in a way, more broken than before.

 

“And….How did it go, Master?” Max hesitated to ask not wanting to annoy the man. When he answered, his eyebrows went up his mouth dropping open.

 

“Well enough, Shadow. Well enough.”

 

Max couldn’t help but be worried. When he had first approached, he had thought the rushing of blood had been prey. That the scent had been from another. It was from his master. He could hear the blood rushing through his veins without assistance. He could hear the breath in his lungs. He could even hear thee changes in his breath  and pace as they talked. The way only humans did. Was this some sort of test? Was his master trying to teach him in some way? What could it mean? More than these things, he had answered him straight forward and without demeaning him.

 

“Master?” He ventured unsure of this new behavior from the other.

 

“Hm?” Wilhelm turned eyebrows raising as he considered the man.

 

“What happened?” His hand moved as if to reach forward and comfort his master, but he dropped it back at his side.

 

“Not here, Maxwell. We must arrive at the manor. No need to look so alarmed. All is well.” The master vampire continued on the path to his home, but the closer he got. The more he worried the change the witch had made was permanent. Her spell was new to him. Maxwell was more learned even than him. Perhaps, he could assist in finding the spell to find how to counter it. But they would have to work behind closed doors. Should a rival hear of his weakness, there would be no hope.

 

When they arrived at the manor, the place was deserted besides the stray cat who had become too attached to Maxwell. If he would stop feeding it, they wouldn’t have this problem. The shadow was a bleeding heart though.

 

The master vampire led the way to the lower studies where he usually stayed to read, or pass the time away. Keeping pace behind him, Maxwell silently followed hoping for any treat or tips the master could pass on. It was unusual a master tolerated shadows or kept one. THe Old Ones tended to be more reclusive than almost all others. As the world passed by, they could handle it less. For some, it was the noise. For others, it was the rapidly changing culture. Technology twisting lives for better or worse.

 

As soon as the study door was closed, Maxwell turned to his master waiting to hear him speak of what had happened.

 

“Maxwell…” Wilhelm lowered himself into a chair without his usual grace. The journey had strangely tired him. “When I fought her. She…used a spell of sorts.”

 

The other’s breath fell from him. If this was all it was, it would be simple to fix.

 

“I didn’t recognize it.” He scrubbed his face trying to take the fatigue away. “You will have to search the books so we may dispel it.” Without another word, his shadow shot forward as only a vampire could and began to search the tomes. His collection was extensive, as he had taken it from every witch he had killed.

 

His shadow asked question after question until Wilhelm had become to annoyed. WHen his master had retreated to the fake window pane, he began his search through the older tomes. His finger came to rest on a spell from ages ago. One he had thought long passed.

 

“Master.” He turned on his heel looking up to see the longing in the man’s face. “I think…I found what you are looking for.” His master didn’t turn to face him but stared into the duplicated sky with clouds passing on the panes. Maxwell stood quiet for a moment. His eyes dropped to the page reading.

 

‘Once the vampire is subdued, the spell is cast. If it holds true, his gift will be taken. His might turned out. His soule once more restored.’

 

“I believe…she made you human.” He looked up from the book to find emotion twisting his master’s face. One he didn’t immediately recognize. One he had seen on cattle before as they walked knowingly to the slaughter. When they knew death had come at last.

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Fantasy, Writing, Writing Prompts

Alspring

  • Word count: 800
  • Genre: Suspense/fantasy
  • Character: A god
  • Material: A whistle
  • Sentence: “We can repair this.”
  • Bonus: Your story involves a damsel in distress.

 

“We can repair this.” The god said standing in front of the woman still curled up in the arms of the statue. Her brilliant red hair spilled over the marble arm almost touching the ground. Humans always such strange creatures to him. She lie there as if the world wasn’t suffering. Like the world wasn’t on the verge of collapse because of his twin brother.

Her blue eyes stared up into the statue’s eyes like a long lost lover.

“You look so much more handsome as a statue.” She started off saying. His face twisted. He wasn’t used to mortals speaking to him like this. “I wonder why artists always carve your face like this. It doesn’t really look like you.”

He folded his arms across his chest. Pressing his lips together, he glanced at the statue then the woman. “We don’t have a lot of options.” He ignored the insults. “If you will not do anything, I will leave you to wraith wandering the halls.” This got her attention, but he was already turned around walking away. He heard her fall from the statue assumably chasing after him. His ear perked hearing her stumble in her haste.

“I’m sorry. I…I’m just scared. I’ve never had to do this or anything like this.” She slowed to keep pace with him in a quick walk. The god was much taller than her so his pace was faster. Even among mortals, she was short. “What do we need to do?” She asked looking up into his face.

While he didn’t look handsome by human standards, he had a certain appeal. His grey eyes were hard set and determined. He had strong features but his face was thinner. His hair roam about like fire having a life of its own. He didn’t have such red hair as her, his being more strawberry blonde, very light strawberry blonde.

Biting her lip, she managed to catch his eye, but he appeared less than pleased.

“Do not expect me to react like your mortal counterparts.” His voice had dropped from the soothing musical lightness to a darker tone promising of unpleasant things. She stared at him shocked. “You will get nothing from me. I at first thought you might be the one I needed to save to help bring the world back to order. The prophecies even said I’d find the one we needed here, but you.” He stopped walking to face her. “Are not who we need. You only think of your simple mortal needs. Cowering. Insulting men. Do you think I can not see your thoughts? I am no mortal. I know.” His grey eyes turned into storms making her draw back. “You are safe for now, Mortal, but you are no longer requested to join the Hunt.” He spun around growling sounding like thunder. The woman stood behind him shocked but didn’t follow. How could he had thought she of all people was the one to bring order to Life and Death?  

He left the broken temple feeling less than stellar. His mission here today had failed. The only reason he had left his home was to find her. Well, not her from inside the temple reeking of manipulation and ego, but the one that was supposed to be the balance. He dropped himself on a broken column staring at the ground. His mother would be disappointed were he to return with nothing.

The stars like a scale hanging in the sky. A balance between the sun and the moon, to Life and Death. She will be the hands to hold each side like a bridge between the beginning and the end. Mortals climb from one hand and across her back to the other. While the brothers judge whether mortal men shall pass from the plate.

It had been the final words spoken to him and his twin before she too had passed from this finite world. She had spoken of it too, but he had remembered too late. His brother took her to his realm beyond. Their mother said she would stay with him for a time then his brother for a time. That hadn’t bothered him. It was the time to come. When she said Death would reign.

The war broke out and his people started dying. The woman his mother spoke of was to stop Life from bringing in those not suppose to be there, but also stop Death from taking those not ready. A mediator between the two.

A noise brought his eyes from the ground. When he saw the creature chasing one of his people, he couldn’t just sit idle. He jumped from his place running after them. They were heading for the river. THe creature probably aimed to drown the mortal. He leapt in front of it brandishing his spear. Light burst from the tip making the creature screeched falling backward tripping over its own massive tail. Lowering the spear, he turned to the woman cowering in the nook of an oak.

“No need to fear.” He soothed. When she looked up, he tilted his head. Her grey eyes looked so much like his own. “Woman. Whence have you come?” He asked. She held her knees to her chest letting her brown hair fall in front of her hiding her. “If you wish me to leave, I shall, but…I don’t bring and harm with me.”

She took a handkerchief from her dress pocket wiping her nose. “Ah…It’s…It’s not that.” Her alto drifted out from behind her curtain of hair. “I just…” He could hear her take a deep breath. “Need a minute.” The god stood waiting patient.

When she lifted her head, she met his eyes not with defiance, like he’d seen in some, or lust. In her eyes, he could see how broken she was. There wasn’t a hint of arrogance within her. “Woman…” He said again but more softly. “Where have you come from?” Now he was more concerned for her than curious. The look in her eye spoke more for her than her silence.

“I don’t know. All I remember is…it was dark.” Her head turned trying to hide what might be seen. Things she didn’t want him to know, but she didn’t know why. “I…I know…” She tried to gauge how much she could tell him. When he dropped into a crouch in front of her, she managed to see into his face. “I…didn’t like it at all.” She whispered now that he was so close. His eyebrows drew together compassion in his eyes. “It hurt…” Her lips curled down. All at once, she was in his arms sobbing.

From Life’s arms, a damsel is brought. Piece by piece will the bridge between Life and Death be wrought.

He knelt holding her wondering at the events playing out this day. His mother had been right. Not that he doubted, but she had been right. “Come. We will go to my home. It is neither dark, or painful there.” Scooping her up, he straightened.

She couldn’t help but be worried about this. What other choice did she have? If she asked to go, she could feel he would let her, but that creature that had chased her was still out there. She ended up nodding. Shortly after he started walking, exhaustion overtook her. Her eyes gradually closed leaving her sleeping in his arms.

 

When she awoke next, she was lying in a meadow. Where they had just come from had the crisp air of autumn. Here, there was the warmth of spring. She could see the man, or god who had saved her wandering around, but she couldn’t tell what he was doing. Standing up, she brushed off her dress and straightened it out.

“Where are we?” She called out.

He turned letting go of a branch he had been holding. A smile stole across his face. “My home. Alspring.”

 

Writing Prompts

Illusion -Word count 600

  • Word count: 600
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Character: A hermit
  • Material: A remote control
  • Sentence: “Don’t trust everything you see.”
  • Bonus: The Sun is failing.

 

“Don’t trust everything you see.”  

The man that stood in front of her was disheveled even beyond what she thought possible. His eyes spoke of experience, and paranoia. She wasn’t entirely sure this hermit could be trusted. Since their society had pushed passed what they thought possible, everyone seemed busy living a life of ease as the robots did their jobs and everyone could pursue what they wanted. Discontent was at an all time low. A few were rejected. The usual like this hermit. They chose to live outside of society doing who knew what. Once in a while, they would be on the street shouting the ‘end is near’ but that had always been so, hadn’t it?

How this man found her was concerning. She had just been walking from work when she felt like she was cornered.

“There is corruption even beyond what you know.”

She gave him a smile, nodding but not believing what he was saying. “Riiiiight.” She drew out the vowel. This seemed to make the man mad.

“I’m not crazy. I know that’s what society makes me seem like so you don’t believe me. But you have to!” He looked so desperate for someone to believe him. Shaking her head, she held her hands up as a barrier between him and herself. There was something in his eyes. Something that disappeared when she rejected him as well. Like she had been his last hope. The last hope against…What? He reached out shoving a remote control device into her hand. Accepting it just so he would leave her alone, she took a step back. She had no idea what he wanted, so she ducked away hurrying off, somewhat surprised when he just stood there watching as if salvation had deserted him.

The look in his eye haunted her through out her walk home and the entire evening. When she turned on the tv to see what was new in the world, or what new invention had been made, she was shocked to see the picture of the man from earlier.

“In a sad turn of events, a man who chose to live on the streets has committed suicide.”

She stood staring unable to believe it. Had he been reaching out to her for help and when she walked away he… Sitting on her bed, she felt something in her pocket jab her leg. She leaned back pulling out the remote the man had given her. Her eyes flicked to the tv then back.

Turning the remote over in her hand, she turned her head trying to read the pencil on the back of it. ‘Point at the sky’ It said. She felt terrible about having abandoning the man in his time of need. Enough, she walked to her window staring at the sun descending the sky. She searched the remote of any sign of what button she should push, but there was no further instruction. The remote appeared to be an ordinary device. Old, but she knew what it was from her textbooks. With nothing else to be done, she figured she’d just push the power button. She pointed the remote at the sky and pushed the button.

To her horror, the sky fell into blazing red. The blue melted away across the sky passed the horizon. She stared at the collapsing star. This was what the hermit had been trying to tell her. Warn her about. Suddenly the past events made sense. The rockets of people ‘Scientists’ going out to explore space. Leaving the dying world. The domes. They hadn’t been luxury living. Had they put up this disguise for everyone that wasn’t worth something or important? 

“In this, the world of tomorrow, it seems like there is less and less to fear.” The newswoman went on to speak. “Science is bringing us so much now that we are able to focus on progression rather than survival. I don’t know about you, Jeff, but I feel like our future is bright.”

 

 

Military, Writing Prompts

Hope comes with the Sun – 550 words

Instead of giving the writing prompts a title like ‘Writing Prompt 50/51’ etc, I think I’m going to give them simple titles. It’ll be easier I’m hoping.

 

Word count: 550

Genre: Military

Character: A disobedient slave

Material: A guitar

Sentence: “How do you feel?”

Bonus: There seems to be no one left on the planet.

 

“How do you feel?” He lowered the broken guitar in his hand. The body of the instrument only held onto the neck by the strings, though some of those were broken as well. The slave in front of him held her arm in front of her trying to back away from her master. “Did it hurt?” He took a step towards her. The woman pulled her legs underneath her body so he wouldn’t have an easy target. The guitar clattered with a twang as it fell from his hand.

She had reached the back of the room. Her back pressed against the damp drywall. “Y-yes, Master…” Her voice failed her telling him that this time. He had gotten to her. “I-I’m sorry, Master? I…I promise I won’t do it again.” She stumbled over her words. Her gaze on the ground. When he didn’t answer, she dared to look up at his body. Her gaze roaming up to his face. She wouldn’t look in his eyes, but he wasn’t moving. Scanning his body, she tried to find any reason he wasn’t moving. Blood dripped from his mouth, but there was no wound.

“Master?” She whispered. Her voice sounding odd in the silence. It was only when she glanced around the room did she notice a man standing in the door way. His face twisted with rage. Her breath hitched. “I-I’m sorry!” She backed away farther trying to somehow merge with the wall behind her. There was no way she could tell why this new man was angry with her. Her bare feet shoved against the dusty floor caked with debri. Her arm stayed in front of her guarding against the blow that would come. It always did. “I didn’t do anything. I promise.” She couldn’t help the sob as she spoke. The footsteps on the man got closer.

“Sh…” He soothed, but it wasn’t a sound she ever felt comfort from. “He’s gone. No. You didn’t do it. I did.”

Fear snared her heart. A man strong enough to kill her master was a man strong enough to hurt her worse. Her lips quivered in a frown.

“I didn’t…I didn’t know you were down here…” His voice had gone so soft she couldn’t help but look passed her arms. His brown eyes were turned down. Why was he so sad? “I would have put an end to him sooner.” When he looked back up, he was extending his hand slowly toward her. “Would you allow me to take you out of here? The war is over. This doesn’t need to continue.”

The news struck her more than anything else had. It was over?

“The camp was liberated weeks ago. We…” He swallowed hard. “We didn’t know about this place.” His eyes flicked around but went back to her face. Reaching out again, he took her hand making the dried blood crack off her knuckles. “You’re safe now. This will never happen again. You’re free.” He pulled her out of the basement. Closing her eyes, she welcomed the sun on her face. She had thought she would never see the sun again. Now, with the sunlight glinting off her skin. She felt a glimmer of hope. Perhaps, it was over.

Writing Prompts

Writing Prompt – 500 words

I’m trying out a new writing prompt site. I’m kinda liking it. The site seems to have everything I need for writing. Lately it’s been really crazy over here. My computer got locked, so I couldn’t do anything with it. It was so frustrating, but luckily someone was able to help me out. Now I can get back to writing!

Word count

500 words

Genre

Suspense

Character

A bank counter

Material

A fridge

Sentence to use

“I can’t see you.”

“I can’t see you.”

 

The words drifted out filling the dining room dropping the temperature. Willard stopped writing on the paper. The numbers, facts, and figures blurred in front of his eyes. His throat convulsed reflexively. He could feel his heart hammering in his chest. The voice just didn’t go away. He thought if he could make it leave him alone. If he could hide. It hadn’t worked.

 

“Where did you go?”

 

The voice drifted out again almost making his eyes roll back in their sockets. It didn’t sound like a child, or a woman, or anyone he recognized, but somehow all of them. He thought he felt in the voice he could hear someone he knew, but also there wasn’t anyone who sounded like that. The sound seemed to change every time he listened like it was trying to find the correct voice to use. Its indecisiveness was his only relief. It hadn’t found a voice that worked well enough yet. As long as it didn’t, he could continue on.

 

“Why are you hiding?”

 

He steadied his hands so he could keep writing. His work needed this in by tomorrow. At first, he hadn’t wanted to, but he didn’t finish at the office in time. What else was he supposed to do? He really needed this job. This company gave him security and good pay. The work wasn’t demanding most of the time and he got sick leave.

His thoughts were abandoning him. He found he was having a harder time thinking now that it was 10 p.m. The voice only called out at this time. When he had first moved in, he had asked about it but no one knew what he was talking about. Not wanting to be the resident crazy, he had kept it to himself.

 

“Are we playing a game?”

 

He took a deep breath. Why wouldn’t it leave him alone? Despite his best effort, he found himself responding.

“No. I’m not. I’m trying to work. Now leave me alone.” Willard said.

His hand ran through his dark thinning hair as he tried to compose himself. Talking into the air made him feel even crazier. What if this was a symptom of something? Was his mind breaking? His family didn’t have any tendencies.

 

“Oh? Aren’t we?”

 

His eyes unfocused off of the paper onto the fridge in front of him. He really shouldn’t respond. Yet, it enticed him. “No.” He shook his head dropping his gaze to the numbers that had once looked so familiar. He had moved the fridge in front of the wall to block where it was coming from.

The voice was deciding too quickly. Responding more often. It had once seemed like a friendly neighbor talking with him or at him. After a few weeks, he had noticed it sounded less ambiguous and more, familiar. He would swear he could feel it trying words in its nonexistent mouth. When it settled, he felt fear grip him. He had lost.

 

“I am.”

Writing Prompts

Writing Prompt – First Line 2

random word count – 445
First line – The house wasn’t the same to her any more

The house wasn’t the same to her any more. Sure, the paintings were all in the same place. The colors were the same. The entire layout was the same. Something felt strangely different. This was her home but not. She couldn’t quite place the feeling at first. The place didn’t feel the same.

She went about her day cleaning up after the little ‘party’ she’d had, but now she felt alone. It wasn’t like she always had to have someone around. There had always been people around once upon a time. After moving out, she had become accustomed to her house and the way it was. Now, it had changed for whatever reason. It felt empty now.

The party hadn’t been very big, so the clean up had ben brief. Whatever it was that had changed still bugged her. She went from room to room scanning, searching, but never finding whatever it was.

Whatever it was, she would have to deal with it tomorrow. She began making dinner, basic since she was put out from cooking so much the day previously. The smell of Italian food filled the air, but didn’t delight her like it usually did. The sauce came together. The pasta finished cooking. Putting it all together in a bowl, she took it into the front room plopping down on her fluffy couch. She smiled when the tv came on for once flicking to the her favorite channel. There she ate her dinner and watched her show without any interruption. It was relaxing. Something she hadn’t been able to do for quite a while.

Finishing up her meal, and episode, she cleaned up after herself without any issue. She hesitated once in a while, but nothing ever happened, so she continued. A knot was forming in her belly. Her instincts were telling her something was wrong, so so wrong. She hoped with a distraction she could place whatever it was.

Dinner was finished with everything cleaned up. The place was probably cleaner than it had been in a while. She didn’t have work today or tomorrow. Without cleaning, she felt her schedule would be free to do whatever she wanted for once. A happy little thrill shocked through her popping a smile up on her face. She could possibly paint. Turning on her heel, she went to the door leading to the basement.

The door was open.

The door was never open.

Her breath held. She swallowed hard. Had someone opened it when the party was going on? Her hand stretched out touching the doorknob but there was no electric charge stinging her hand like usual. This wasn’t good.

The demon was gone.

fan fiction, Writing, Writing Prompts

Writing Prompt – Skyrim fanfiction

I would appreciate it if you call me Peyton, you will hate me in the end.

I don’t take the moral path. I don’t believe in the ethics of normal people. Your beliefs are not my own. All my life, I have fought against the traditions of my ancestors. Polite. Mannerly. Moral upstanding citizens of the world. In this time period, they are meaningless. My family members are just another part of the species that share a similar blood structure. The people that came before me. Nothing but dust.

So many get offended when I talk about the dead like that. They gasp putting a hand over their mouth unsure how to react as they’ve never found another with my…ideals. I don’t care about the lives that lived before me. They may have had a hand in my existence but that is where it stops. There is nothing more they mean to me. Dust is what we all shall be. Dust is what you shall be.

It’s not like I have particular beliefs about death and dying. I wasn’t traumatized as a kid. Or. Not that I remember. No. My parents were caring, loving people. Each trying their best to instill in me a love for honor and tradition. Like all other children, I had tried to follow my parents.

It wasn’t until I was older when I suppose I faltered.”

“I was walking home from school when I heard a groan from the woods by the path. At first, I was unsure but I was curious. After I’d gone off the path, both figuratively and literally, I saw…a man.” His face lit up with wonder. “His arm raised like the arm of God. Sword sparkling in the sun. He brought it down again and again. Blood splattering the bushes, trees and ground. The man hit the other with such force it sprayed blood even the distance to me. I remember because I had speckles of red on my skin.” The awe from a second ago tempered with reverence. “The man didn’t even bother to clean up the mess. He just lowered the sword watching the man twitch and writhe on the ground not yet dead. The coldness of his face. In his eyes.” His eyebrows twitched up millimeter by millimeter. “I didn’t realize you could be anything but good, moral and ethical. At that moment, I saw what you could aspire to become. This…god among men. He was a true god. Not this figurative thing people talked about. No. He was

“I didn’t realize you could be anything but good, moral and ethical. At that moment, I saw what you could aspire to become. This…god among men. He was a true god. Not this figurative thing people talked about. No. He was truly…truly something else.” He breathed. “I don’t know what happened in that moment, but I couldn’t get the image out of my head. Him standing there like an avenging god uncaring for the life of another. Blood soaked sprayed all over him. His lips turned in a curl of pleasure. The ice he had for eyes. How calm he looked. Not the fear I saw on everyone else’s face when they talked about the frightening. No. This man knew no fear. He was the beast they feared.” His head slunk back against the wall. “I think that was the moment. I wanted to be like him. I wanted people to fear me like they did him. I wanted to bathe in the power drenching me.” A small laugh escaped his nostrils. “I didn’t want to be this fake god they spoke of trying to make me fear. No. He was what I aspired to be.” His eyes closed looking for once to be calm and peaceful. “I couldn’t get the image out of my head.”

It took a moment before Peyton continued talking. The man had captured my attention completely at this point. This man with the confidence to speak like this. I never would talk about the taboo and evil this way. He did it so naturally. I was thoroughly convinced he meant every word he said. Peyton interrupted my thoughts drawing me back into his story.

“I don’t think he saw me. When I think about that moment that changed my life so thoroughly. I don’t think he really saw me.” He turned his head to cast those cold eyes on me. “When I got home, I constructed the best effigy of him I could make at the age of twelve. I hid it in my wardrobe. And soon. I began to add things to this makeshift shrine. I began to draw him more and more always in red.” Shifting in his position against the wall, he drew a knee up to rest his arm on.

“I knew after a while it wasn’t enough. Not enough. Not nearly enough. He was demanding in his presence in my mind. He needed…He needed something so much more than crude drawings, wax and prayers.” He grew distant like I was no longer sitting in front of him. It was times like this I forgot to continue writing. “My family had a cat. It was old. I didn’t think anyone would notice when it didn’t come home.” He took a deep sighing breath. His shoulders relaxed their tension. The euphoria that took over his face sent chills down my spine. “I picked the cat up one evening before it got dark. It purred in my arms relaxed and unaware of the danger it was in. That alone made the act so thrilling. With my pocket knife my father had given me for my twelfth birthday, I held the cat down and stabbed it. I was scared at first but feeling the warmth. It was so absurdly warm. I hadn’t expected it. The cat tried to get away fighting with everything it was worth but I had it by the neck. Pinned unable to move. I stabbed it again. Then again. The glee that followed would dominate my mind from then on. I tore the cat apart throwing the blood everywhere laughing with as one in a drugged state. The carcass in my hand limp and heavier than I had really anticipated. It was tiring. I set the cat down and like my father had taught me. I skinned it. I took the skull wrapped it in the fur and tossed the body away beneath a tree. I was quite the macabre scene I’m sure, but no one was home and the ground took the blood from my shoes. I washed up after I got home having set the skull and skin to dry in a place no one ever went where it would be safe until I could retrieve it.”

He leaned against the wall again his remembrance having excited him. “I did that night what I had never done before. I’d never had the sensation before, but the memory of the cat’s pain. The whole…thing. I found a fire in my loins as had never happened before. It was only with that memory and myself did I find relief. The memory served as material for a long time afterwards.” He took a large breath letting it out all at once before continuing. “After the skin and skull were dry, I set it in my shrine. Many more would be added to it over the course of the year. Some small some larger. I even found the skull of a human at one point. I became paranoid, however. My parents seemed to be aware of what was going on in some form and I knew what I was doing was…wrong to them and so many other and knew I shouldn’t ever let it be seen. I moved my shrine to a small luggage bag taking it to the place I first saw my god in all his glory.” He was watching me now as if trying to gauge how I was taking all this information, but it was just because I had stopped writing.

“From that point on, I would take anything I had blood, bone, skin and sacrificed it to him there. I even began killing things on his shrine in dedication to him. I would pray for him to send me more victims. I asked him to teach me how to do more. I needed more. I couldn’t …couldn’t get enough.” He was breathless again with a vague look in his eyes. I had long noticed his arousal but I wouldn’t mention anything of the sort. Not when I knew what type of person he was and with everything he was saying. “It took me by surprise when one day I had killed a dog on the stone I had set up in front of his shrine. I pinned it with steel camping stakes. It whined gloriously. Beautifully while I killed it taking so much pleasure in its continued pain. I’m not sure when the man had come up, but I suppose he had been watching the entire time. Only when he got closer did I realize, he…” His eyes teared up and his voice broke. “He was my god. The one I had worshiped for years now. There he stood. His sword in hand. His cold eyes on my flesh. If he struck me down then, I would have reveled in the joy it brought me. No, he looked at what I had done.” He choked on his emotion. “No. I had pleased him. He was. He was so happy at what he saw. I had done something he was proud of.” It took another minute for him to recover.

“My god then showed me the way, the path and everything that came with it. He taught me how to slaughter the weak, the helpless and make it hidden. He taught me so much more than I could have ever learned on my own. It wasn’t until I was older did I realize I was his apprentice and our craft was of blood. He took me places I had never been. He brought such…peace and joy to my life.”

My pen paused as a question drifted up. Peyton seemed to sense the question waiting for me to ask. “So…you left home with him? Didn’t you ever think…” I didn’t finish. I didn’t have to.

“No. I left with him without a word to my family. I didn’t care. They were nothing to me and to my god. He had chosen me and called me to a greater work than they could have ever realized. They didn’t know. Nor would they.” He stopped a smile twitching his lips. “Or at least, not for a while.” I found myself frowning as I wrote this down as well. Peyton continued once again.

“It wasn’t until I was sixteen that he first introduced to me a new way. He showed me how to scare others with my craft. How to cut so the blood sprayed in a pattern that terrified normal people.” His hand made a cutting motion in the air. “Then.” He smiled readily. “He gave me a sword of my own. That night we went slaughtering like men and women go caroling. From door to door. From place to place. All. Any. He had taught me well enough no one could stand against us.”

My eyebrows drew together. “If you were both, so good at it, how did you get caught?” I asked looking up into the killer’s eyes.

“I wanted to be.” His smile faded becoming softer.

“You…Wanted to be?” I asked searching his face.

“My god died a few years back ascending into the heavens with a fury of fire. As was his request.” He looked sad, if a man like him could ever be. “But I only let myself be ‘captured’ for one reason and only one.” He looked back at me. “It’s time I took an apprentice.” Cold rushed through my veins. I swallowed hard looking back at him. “The Dark Brotherhood awaits.”

 

 

 

 

(Part 1 of the Apprentice Fan Fiction)

Writing

6

What makes them crave it? What makes them go insane? What takes their humanity and only leaves a shattered box? Is it the taste? Or does some sort of chemical reaction happen that changes them? That’s what I found out.” He grinned wide at a young woman. His hands reached out grabbing her shoulders. “I’ve found it!” A sort of glee formed in his eyes. She watched him unsure of why he was acting so strangely. “I want to take you back there.” She frowned as he stared at her unblinking. He wanted her to be like him. Whatever he was now. Her foot slid back as she tried to pull away but his grip was too strong. He grinned at her. His eyes wide. “Come with me.” It didn’t sound like he was asking her. She stared unable to pull away. Her mind panicked throwing ideas around searching for anything to get her away. The penetrating stare shifted to the right. She followed his gaze to see a strange man crouching to her left.

 

The man’s clothing was dirty as if he had crawled along the ground. Even his hands and face was covered in a blackish grime. When her eyes lifted to his, they held nothing. He held a blank expression as if looking through her eyes unfocused yet focused on her. His lips were twisted up and frozen in a permanent smile much like the man holding her. The man that had been her boss.

 

“You…You seek the 6?” He stuttered. “The 6? 6? 6? 6? 6? 6?” His head cocked to the side as he shambled forward using hands, feet and knees. It would have been funny had the situation been different. Her boss let her go turning to frown at the man. Whatever that had taken him seemed to dissipate.

 

“Get away from here. This is none of your business.” His hands motioned for the man to leave but he crouched there grinning at him as if unaware of what those motions meant. He had the innocent expression of a puppy, but the malevolence of a serial killer. The woman crept backwards while her boss was preoccupied. She disappeared passed the doorway they had been standing in. Her boss didn’t appear aware of where she had gone or even concerned by her departure. Shifting backwards, the man disappeared down the stairwell as silently as he had arrived. Which was a feat considering how he was walking, backwards staring eyes locked on the boss. The shine off his white teeth the last to fade into the darkness.

 

The police chief walked into the historic inn holding his clipboard. It had notes on the case along with ghastly pictures of things he’d rather not think about. He had first objected but his daughter was as strong willed as he was. She insisted on joining him even if it was one of the most dangerous cases he’d been on.

 

For the past few months, random people were found jabbering on about something called ‘the 6’. Whatever it was, it had a different effect on each person. They had traced each person’s travels to this location. More people talked about the ‘6’ here than elsewhere but he was no closer to finding out what it was then when he started. A noise pulled his attention from his notes. A man was crawling in a crouch down the stairs in an ambling slow fall. Yet, he caught himself each time. It was startling to watch. As soon as the man had reached the bottom of the stairs, safely surprisingly, he laid straight before rolling against the wall and grinning into the wood. The police chief stood watching him expecting something more from the crazed man, but he did nothing more. He turned to someone coming to down the opposite stair.

 

“Dad.” His daughter Amber came down the stairs. She didn’t smile at him, but her eyes brightened at the sight of him. Her hair was bright red like her mother. Her eyes deep blue. She was strong in form like a dancer, but not willowing. Her arm was curled around her own clipboard. “There was a man up there that talked about the 6.”

 

He opened his mouth to speak, but the crawling man shot from the corner bolting to his daughter. He tackled her into the stairs laying on her nose to nose staring into her eyes. “You have the 6? You have 6?” He tilted his head. Running over, the chief went to grab the man’s shoulder but his daughter already shoved him off. He dropped into his crouch knuckles on the rug. “You said 6. You talk about the 6. You have the 6?” He dodged any attempted to grab him like a boxer. “You said 6!” He shouted startling everyone. Standing up, he faced her then the police chief. “Liar for miar. Liar in the box like a fox.” He turned on his heel marching to his corner to fall on his face on the floor.

 

The police chief went over to his daughter slowly to not provoke the man any further. Reaching out, he took her hand and pulled her to her feet. “I don’t understand…” She murmured. “In any case,” She spoke in a near whisper. “I don’t think we should mention it around other people unless…well, we want that sort of reaction. Now that we are closer to an answer, where more people are like this, I think it’s better we don’t speak about it around people at all. THere’s no telling if someone might have a worse reaction than he did.” His daughter turned to pick up her clipboard, but the chief watched the man. He couldn’t explain it but he knew the man was somehow very aware of them despite looking at the wall.

 

“I think we gave them a glance at our hand.” She looked up at her father brows drawn in confusion.

 

“Our hand?” She asked, but her dad didn’t answer only walked to the doors. What hand they had given away was a bit lost on her. Was it the fact they knew about ‘6’ or that they were police? Her lips pressed together.

 

“Come on. Let’s get out of here. I don’t like this place. It feels wrong.” Coming from the police chief, his daughter knew something was amiss. It wasn’t like him to be unnerved by anything. She knew he wasn’t sharing all the information with her, but part of her was glad. From what she had seen. What lied within this mystery was a gory mess meant only for horror stories. Nevertheless, she needed to continue. She was the only one that had her father’s back in this. No one else believed anything about it.

 

She sat on the steps with her knees drawn up to her chest her arms wrapped around them. What had her boss been thinking? That strange look in his eyes gave her the creeps. It was almost like he wanted something from her, but what was it? He had looked crazed, driven mad. His words…Had he really found it? Why would he actually use it? He of everyone should know what it does. He’d been studying it longer than anyone.

 

Her eyes pulled off of the pavement to an older man and a young woman walking from the inn towards their car. It was nicer than anything they had here, which labelled them as travellers. If they travelled here, they could only be looking for it. No one ever travelled here for any other reason. Everyone seemed addicted. Her world revolved around this stupid thing and she didn’t even know what it was. Her boss had given her hints, tips, and bits of information. Enough to keep her following him, but not enough to figure it out. He strung her along all this time with promises of fame, money, glory, or anything she might want. She hadn’t been in it for that, but more…to maybe fix this. She had studied biology and chemistry for a long time. There was never any indication it would help, but after her mother. After what happened to her mother, she had vowed to find out what ‘6’ was. Ten years later she still had no idea. She had found her boss, Damen, but he didn’t lead her anywhere but in circles.

 

She looked back at the man and woman. They were looking around for something and looking at clipboards. Whatever they were doing, it was so unusual someone was following them down the street. He was one of the shamblers. More animal than human. They weren’t the ones to really be worried about. Not that she had found. They were erratic, unpredictable, and sometimes terrifying, but mostly harmless. Unless, they thought you had ‘6’. Why was it called ‘6’ anyway? Sighing, she stood up heading down the street rubbing her arms. With her boss gone berserk, she only had the little bit of money left to find a way back home. There was nothing left for her here. Her goal unsuccessful. So close. She thought she had almost solved it. Her mother would remain where she was it seemed.

 

The town was small, but it had a surprising amount of people. Most had been seeking 6, but had become trapped here. Much like she was now. She had been told the town was like a black hole. No one escaped. No one left but in a bag.

 

There were four types of people she had found here so far, not that she had spent much time here or around them. Shamblers, as people called them. The semi-insane, semi-sane people that were barely coherent. The Bliss. People blissfully ignorant of everyone. Ones who seek but haven’t found. Unknowing of what terrible fates remain for them. Then, the amply named Teddies. The ones driven to the point of violence. They no longer care what violent, or manipulative  measures it takes to get more 6. No matter the games to play or who hurts. Her boss apparently became a Teddy. She didn’t want to stay to find out what she might become. 6 was like alcohol in a sense. There were different reactions to it as well. The fourth she had an idea of was what she called the Pawn. People unaware of their actions but performed complex tasks. If asked what they were doing, they usually had no idea. Pawn went about purposefully, which suggested someone controlling them. Which also suggest maybe a fifth type? The Mastermind?

 

Even with the amount of people here. She found the town in disrepair. Since she had some education, she hoped someone might want her services. Maybe with medical or constructing? After taking the 6, most people seemed to be incapable of comprehending anything, much less repair or maintenance. She walked up to a man who looked in charge.

 

“E-Excuse me?” She held herself, strangely cold. “I was hoping you could help me?”

 

“I don’t have 6.” He stated without looking at her. “Leave me. I need to finish.”

 

She watched him for a moment before turning. A hand clamped on her shoulder. Pain thrashed from her shoulder down her arm. Looking up, she stared at the man holding her shoulder. He wasn’t even aware he was doing it. “Please let go!” She cried trying to get his hand off. His grip was impossibly strong. “I didn’t…I didn’t do anything.” Her eyes flicked around but no one was watching or doing anything. “Help!” She cried out louder, but no one moved. Panic welled up within her. Her eyes darted from person to person. They all acted as if it were a normal day. “Help!” She yelled again  flailing out as the man dragged her into the building. He was still talking. Still looking at papers. While she bit, clawed, and fought for freedom.