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 Female x Male No Way Forward, No Way Back

Discussion in 'Roleplay Execution' started by xKyosan, Jun 21, 2019.

  1. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    Much of the town had become less and less recognizable over the years. Aurora hadn't any idea of the beauty that came before her. She knew not of the hustle and bustle of the small farming town. So much land used to carry crop in every direction. All she did know, it used to be automated. Human interaction was a rather rare and futile thing. From what she'd been taught since her birth, before the outbreak, humans barely communicated beyond what was necessary. The fact that the population dropped so drastically since machines took over was, in her mind, a likely culprit, and aide in the outbreak. She, however, grew up being close to those around her. It was a requirement of the situation. And she could tell quite easily while observing the adults that to them, communication and even physical contact was abnormal.

    She pillaged the store a hundred times over, and eventually it just became part of her routine. Whenever she would leave the safety of their camp, she would stop by that barely standing building. She found some idea of what peace was like in its walls, something warm and inviting - dissimilar to her keepers. She stepped into the building, her old and tattered boots scraping against rock and glass debris scattered about the floor. Everything looked as untouched as the few days before, but she could never be certain. She took caution while moving through the aisles. Most items left were inedible, cleaning products, hair dye, tooth paste. Which, not to lie, she'd eaten a tube of in a desperate situation. To her, this was life, this was normal, it was all she knew.

    She took a few more cautious steps through the building, keeping her hand tight on the machete strapped to her waist. Thank god the museum had prehistoric weapons.
     
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  2. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    Alex was born, raised, seemingly bred for one thing. To obey the elders. To obey the edicts. To follow the laws of the colony. He had a place amongst the people; amongst the herd of tattered survivors that huddled in fear of each passing day. He was among the runners; the feeders, the foragers as the old term was repurposed to suit a new need. He had but one job, one task, to leave each morning in the dead silence of the whispered gospel, and head to whatever desecrated ruin he could find for food, water, or working electronics. Though the latter was less likely than the rest, it was what he seemed keen to find more often than not.

    This day; like every other for the last eleven years since being chosen for a task, he headed out with both the speed of a hunter, as well as the reckless abandon of someone truly trying to escape what lay behind him. Yet this day, the morning dew fading under the rising of the sun, was unlike any other before it. This day, Alex would get lost. Distracted. Caught off guard.

    Something not just dangerous, but against the edicts and laws of his small commune of survivors. Something unforgiveable in the eyes of the elders. With their fear of the past and knowledge of what had shook the world to its core, came a hatred for any further change. Any break in the chain meant it was to be discarded rather than repaired. Alex knew this, and yet when he reached the very edge of his search area for the day, he came upon a sight that would shatter his resolve almost instantly.

    Through the teachings of the elders and the written laws of his 'family', Alex knew that there were no others alive. That the world had been enveloped in a plague that took all but the devout and righteous. He knew it because he had never witnessed any other truth in his eighteen years alive. Yet before him, no more than two hundred feet away, he saw what appeared to be a person entering a small store.

    At first he brushed the idea away; fear and anxiousness taking hold in his chest as his heart raced and his mind began to follow suit. He could barely breathe, his dry lips parting to allow the most hollow of gasps to escape, and yet as he slowly neared the entrance to the building, it began to settle over him like a crashing wave. They had lied. They had all lied. They werent alone. The world wasnt dead. His confusion turned to anger as he opened the door and passed through the portal: Ever closer to the impossible within the dark interior.

    Red; as bright as the sky before the birth of night, gleamed at the edge of Alex's right hand. A small knife; passed down from his father, and his father's father before him. A token reminder of the ancient animosity and barbarity of humanity in times of war was gripped tight in the young man's outstretched hand as he cautiously; with bated breath, made his quiet walk down the nearest isle. What lay on the shelves, on the floor, or on the walls was not but a blur as his eyes sought to find but one thing. The person inside. The other living soul that was like a ghost now haunting his every thought.

    What would he do? What would he feel? Who was it? How....? How....?

    The questions raced faster and faster as the darkness of the store seemed to lift and his eyes adjusted. One way or another, sooner or later, he would have answers to the now mountain of questions laying waste to his body and mind.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2019
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  3. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    Aurora had made her way to the back of the convenience store. She stumbled her way through a narrow hall caked in ruble. At the end, a closet she had come to think of as a sanctuary. Her people, their kind, were ravenous in their destruction and inhuman practices. She needed a place to remind herself of the sanity she'd read about, the sanity she'd been told had existed before the sickness destroyed everything. She stopped just short of turning the handle, feeling her skin tingle. She glanced back over her shoulder. Had someone come in after her? Even if they had, where would she run to if necessary? She'd been going along this route since her 14th winter, and that made it at least 4 more winters. She couldn't be certain how many times the snow had fallen and melted since her birth. She knew there was no exist beside the one which she came from.

    She weighed the odds of her survival through violence. She hadn't eaten in days, she'd fled the tribe she called home, so there was no one to aide in her defense. In fact, it hadn't occurred to her that the maybe intruder could be 'her people', coming to make a meal of her. Knowing she wouldn't last long in an altercation, she slipped into the closet with as much grace as she could muster from her shaking and tired body. Traditionally, she would have left the door slightly ajar, but she was feeling worried, and she pulled it closed to assist in her defense. It clicked, a bit louder than she'd have liked, behind her.

    With her imminent death on the horizon, she took the opportunity to look upon the mural once again, and possibly for the last time. Her eyes trailed over the wall, hand soon to follow. It moved, tracing over days old charcoal. The artwork was a woman, older than her, but similar in appearance. A secondary branch of herself, or the tree from which she grew. She kept her palm there, flat against the portrait, taking in short and shallow breaths. Rash decisions made in toxic environments had lead her to fall onto a path she wasn't prepared for. Humanity was gone. All that remained were the starving remnants of a civilization at its peak. They allowed themselves to be plunged into chaos, into darkness, into corruption and disassembly.

    She took in a sharp breath, wiping away a would have been tear from her eye. She would normally speak, word to the long dead woman before her, asking for her strength, asking for her guidance, asking for anything. But with the looming fear of an enemy in her midst left her standing there silently. She took in a steadying breath. As the calm of it washed over her she wrapped her hand around the handle of her machete again. Freshly sharpened, she could slice through someone with ease. Though, she had a strong fear that perhaps they carried with them projectile weapons. She had only heard stories of small bits of metal that could sling so fast through the air they'd rip flesh apart. She'd never seen them first hand, and hadn't ever wanted to.

    Her clothing was strange, sheets of metal were punctured and attached to the fabric, as if a form of armor. She lifted her hood up and made sure to clip the strings to the base on her torso. The clippings would allow the hood to remain erect, even during battle. It would give her just another layer of protection. Of course, she could be wrong, she could be hysterical from the lack of food, the dehydration. Her decision to flee was - neutral at best. But she couldn't stand to see them kill another one of their own out of sheer hunger.

    She turned the handle, pushing the door open while doing her best to hide behind it.



    ((Umm.... holy sweet mother of Gaia.... you are... like - so good at writing.))
     
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  4. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

    Messages:
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    1:27 PM
    Alex stood patient near the doorway for what seemed like forever. His breath and heart both catching and skipping in a melody that battered down his resolve second by second. He could hear only the rushing of blood in his ears; could see only the vacant shelves and scavenged remains of the store, and yet somehow he knew he was not alone. Somehow he could almost feel someone nearby. He took a step forward; a light shuffle that overturned an empty can at his feet, and scowled as it rang like thunder in the eerily quiet interior. Reverborating and echoing off the walls and ceiling as if in protest to being disturbed the can rolled across the floor with an unearthly howl.

    The lasting ring; a bellowing note set against a backdrop of emptiness was almost too much to bear, and with both the confusion and anger now beating out a chorus inside of Alex's skull, he reacted with a harsh step and heavy kick. Sending the small can hurtling across the room and into a rather large pile of decaying and rotten boxes. The movement; almost as if kicking away the nervousness and the fog that veiled him, instantly left Alex hyper alert and aware. His body tensed, eyes and ears now focused on everything that wasnt his own heartbeat and breathing, and with patient, calculated steps, he began to edge forward towards the back of the shop.

    The young hunter counted out the obstacles, memorized the layout, created plan upon plan for fleeing should the need arise, as he carefully; painstakingly, made his way into the lair of his new ghost. The thing that would haunt him eternally if he did not seek to learn the truth.

    A light click, almost unheard, almost undefined against the hungry darkness and silence of the store, almost...

    Alex stopped; the small knife held tight, his weathered knuckles whitened from the intensity of his grip, as his eyes narrowed and his gaze attached to the nearly invisible door at the rear of the store. Had it moved; had the door opened, was there now a gap in the doorway??? Alex couldnt move, let alone think properly, as he strained to watch both handle and hinge simultaneously. The silence was devastating; a natural disaster, a torrent, a maelstrom: It thundered and roared, echoed and howled, scattering every last fiber of Alex's will into the wind as his sweat stung his light green eyes and his heart ached to free itself from his chest.

    The young man wanted to escape the darkness, the silence, the fear swarming him. He wanted to turn and run; to escape the haunted place so nightmarishly simple and empty. He wanted to forget what he had seen, to forget it all and go back to the elders with empty arms. Better to suffer the switch than to be exiled to walk alone in the hell that was this world. He wanted to simply disappear in that instant and have his choices stolen from him. To be free of the ghost; the devil that had coiled fingers wrapped tightly around him.

    Alex wanted to be free...

    With his skin crawling; eyes now reddened from both dryness and painful sweat running into them, he began to step backwards without blinking. It was in that moment, his concentration and resolve both completely shattering as he moved to extricate himself from the store, that he saw the door move again. This time it was no illusion; no trick of the devil to draw him in, no trap set by the darkness or his loneliness. He watched; still backing away with small steps, as the gap between door and seal spread wide like that of a wicked maw. Darkness for jaws; unseen teeth, a whispered groan of horror from the aged hinges. Alex knew he had made a mistake; knew his time had come. He was now facing down the devil, the demon, the cataclysm creator that had rent the world in twain.

    One more step...

    Alex never reached the door as his instincts and fears urged him to do. He never breached the entry into the light of day. Instead; with both mind and body heavy with remorse and confusion, he stepped backwards onto a small overturned rack and fell. He fell into the darkness, into oblivion, into the sweet embrace of unconsciousness. There he would slumber and wait for the cruel devil to consume him.

    ((I believe you to be as good, if not better than me, so no worries there XD))
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2019
  5. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    The sound of clattering metal forced her instincts into overdrive. Without thinking she hurled the door open, barreling down the hall with her machete at the ready. Even that short burst of energy exhausted her into a blurred existence. Her fatigue devoured her so much that her warrior cry sounded of a yowling cat. Her body slumped against the wall, just as it opened to the main floor of the store. She tried to refocus her eyes, tried to analyze what, if anything, had changed, but her vision struggled to clear. She could tell that the shadowing on the floor was different than before, but the strain of her eyes made it too hard to decipher. All she knew, she was prepared to fight with everything she had left to give, which unfortunately wasn't much.

    She managed to push herself off the wall, bringing her blade back up. She took a few more cautious steps forward, bending herself at the knees in case of attack. She turned around a set of racks, feeling her body tighten. If she wasn't careful of her stance, she was sure failure would be unavoidable. As she came around another set of racking, she lifted one arm towards her face. It soon fell some, she simply hadn't the strength to keep it there. As she came around the corner, narrowing in on the origin of the sound, she shook her head. Another attempt to clear her vision. Even through the blurred pinhole vision, she could tell it was a person.

    She tightened her grip, sliding her foot forward enough to be able to tap against the intruders foot. She stopped just short and instead stepped back and nudged them with her blade. She took comfort in what appeared to be a lack of response. She took the opportunity of false safety, and knelt down beside the body. Her eyes trailed up and down the stranger, taking in as much detail as she could. They were different than her, they didn't look like the others she'd known. Something structurally different. Bulkier, and less curved. She used her machete as an extension of herself, using the dull side of the blade to poke and prod at the specimen before her. She pulled back folds of clothing, trying to look beneath the surface to see what was below.

    She fell back as another intense wave of exhaustion swept over her. She grabbed at the side of her head, letting her blade go. It fell with a clang to the floor. She pressed her palms flat into her temples, pushing as hard as she could bear, desperate to alleviate the pain radiating across her skull. She took in a short breath, gritting her teeth as the pain flashed away nearly as quickly as it had come. Her fingers fell slowly from their entanglement with deep auburn locks of hair. Her eyes fell closed for a moment, opening just enough for her to see the soft light shining in through the broken window as the Sun moved through the sky.

    She needed water, food, sleep. She'd been running for too long with no supplies. Everywhere she looked, either other survivors she likely couldn't trust, or simply nothingness all around. She shifted her weight, trying to get to her knees. It took more work than she cared for. Her intention to slumber through midday to regain some strength had been derailed by - whatever was before her. They may have been human, or at least looked it. It was no reason to blindly trust though.

    She reached for the body, pushing away more of the clothing in search of water, or food, anything.


    (( Sorry if it's not obvious, but she's from a settlement of only women. She's never seen a man before so she's kind of confused by his build and what not C; I also didn't know if you were ok with me assuming he had food on him so I had to kinda leave that open ended... ))
     
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  6. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    Morning prayer; transient and ethereal, hushed by walls but still ever present through every corridor and hall, woke Alex each morning, and laid him to rest again each night. The ventillation system now a mere heat sink to disperse the dangerous waves of deep earth energy that fueled his 'family' home. Such heat, though stifling and painful, purified his body with each new dawn, and left him in a near perfect physical state. Never had he been sick, nor had he ever known a day of weariness or truly understood the concept of death. He lived on in a sheltered world; home to thirty five men ranging from the youngest of seven, to the Elder Father of nearly one hundred and ten, and each of his winters passed without grief or fear.

    Such was the law, one of the edicts proposed by and carried out through the will of the elder's and their connection to the creator. To God. The First Father.

    -"Speak only in whispers, for the devil shall not hear you."-

    The first and most adament of the laws, was one Alex himself had never witnessed being broke. Never had one of the fathers spoken to him. Never had he heard words directed at him from any but the one who acted as shepherd. The man who chose each task, for each father and son, for the last near century. The Elder Father's scratchy and yet soft melotone voice had only touched his heart but once, but Alex had known from that moment what he had to do. To listen and obey, to follow each order and command. To be but one of many hands for the father to cleanse the world. For in his usefulness, Alex found peace and sanctuary from the tales of damnation. From the knowledge of the ancient world and the horrors that befell humanity. In his purpose there was a power to quell fear and anger, and escape to the brief home left over on earth for the meak who so inherited it.

    -"Thou Shalt Not Suffer A Witch To Live."-

    Alex had walked the coals; bled for sins of long forgotten fathers, been lashed and beaten to break his body to kneel before god, and in his heart he would willingly commit to such tortures again for the sake of showing his devotion and to secure his spot in the everlasting. From the first memory to the last morning Alex awoke, each day was full of prayer, of teachings, of the lord's presence in word and world. From the sun to the stars, to the machinery and maliciousness of the past, Alex had learned from the exerpts of ancient society. From the collective knowledge of his fathers and their sanctuary cathedral. He knew what humanity was, of the rise of the devil and his minions, of the great plague, and the world of sadistic violence before the final fall into silence.

    -"Thou Shalt Not Suffer A Witch To Live"-

    The words whispered, sifted between countless others to fall upon him now, as Alex snapped from the daydream like unconsciousness and became aware in a flash. His eyes gained focus, his heartbeat settled, his lips parted, and he repeated one of many lines bore into his soul.

    -"Thou Shalt Not Suffer A Witch To Live"-

    Drawing backwards as fast as he could; gripping his knife in cold hands now white knuckled, he dropped his backpack and lunged forward. He could never go home; he was no longer clean, had disobeyed his fathers, had fallen into the darkness of a well and was tainted by the whispered will of the devil. He was angry and fearful. He was going to hell, and through the whirlpool of emotions that slammed him and his blade forward towards the woman, he could hear only those words, and see only her face.

    Her face...

    -"Thou Shalt Not Suffer A Witch....To"-

    As if the hand of god, or perhaps of the betrayer himself, had been removed from his eyes, he came to see the one before him for the first time. From hair to eyes, to lips and shoulders, head to toe. She was no monster. She was a girl. A woman. Something only written about in the scriptures, only mentioned in whispers, only a memory of the eldest father and the dead earth before him. In his heart something seemed to change; a twang of compassion was born, a needle pierced him through and through as if he had been opened up to bleed for his sin's once more, and as he lunged forward to end the witch's life, he remembered.

    -"She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue"-

    Words fell across the young mans heart as his blade neared the woman's own. Had he truly thought to kill her. To take a life in fear and anger. In disgust for his own sins.

    A voice not his own fell upon Alex in that moment of stilled reverence. In that split second before he would strike true with blade and end not just one life but condemn himself to a lifeless guilt.

    -"She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her. Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her; those who hold her fast are called blessed"-

    The blade fell from his hand mere inches from the young woman's chest, as Alex's eyes closed and he began reciting all he could remember of Eve, of the Mother before, of women. He needed to remind himself that to bring violence upon innocence was more unforgiveable than almost anything else. He closed his eyes tight against hidden tears as verse and scripture escaped lips dried and chapped. He would not look again upon the face of the woman; would not let himself be driven into the darkness by his fear. If he should be slain then and there by the evils of the devil; become fuel for darkness in a witch's plan, so be it. He would die as he had lived; in quiet prayer, in the lands of his father, singing glory to god from the depth of his soul.

    ((Sorry about the length and... well... preachy-ish stuff lol))
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
  7. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    ((I'm kicking myself in the teeth because I forgot to check for an EDIT. I kept waiting to see the notification only to find out you posted a while ago! I'm sooooorry..))

    She gasped. The sudden movement threw her off balance, and she nearly fell back. Her mind was already a metropolis of confusion and chaos, to have an attack from an unknown - unmarked, unnamed and mysterious figure, was too much. Clenching her eyes shut as she awaited the pain she expected to befall her, was all her tired bones could do. She felt her body tighten, jaw clenching in fearful anticipation of his blade piercing her skin. She expected the sound of tearing flesh, something she'd heard too many times.

    The sounds of bones crunching and splitting apart was something she hadn't realized she'd known so well. The way they would pop and snap, like wood crackling in a fire. The part she hated the most; teeth gnawing and sucking at skin. Blood curdling screams came as an echo on a loop in her mind. Not a nightmare, as she hoped, but something she knew to be a part of her past. The reason she ran. The reason she hadn't eaten in days. The reasons she nearly died. There was nothing like hearing a child screaming.

    It wasn't always like that. Her mind turned a sharp corner, more memories flooding in. Not the most opportune of times, but she welcomed the remembrance of the warm Sun and gardens flourishing. At least her mind could be at peace as she took her last breath. At least she could remember what life was like before She left, before She was taken from them.

    The taste of strawberries - a gentle hand holding hers, and a shadowed figure she couldn't focus in on. A memory she was happy to perish to. A memory of warmth, of love. She wished it to still be.

    But there was nothing. The memory faded nearly as quickly as it had come. Her mind pressed it to the back corner of her subconscious as her desperation to survive kicked in. The most primal of instincts took control of her. Her biological need to survive took control and she pleaded within herself to open her eyes. But she battled within herself. She thought, just maybe, the pain was too severe and her mind had blocked it away. Perhaps her chest had been opened, and her soul was leaving.


    There, the sound of murmurs - something she recognized to be words. Words with heavy weight behind them, though she didn't understand their meanings, she felt she knew what they were. Finally she opened her eyes to see the blade, fallen, beside the figure. She watched lips open and close, over and over, what looked to be repetition.

    "Please... water." Her body was finally giving up on her. The adrenaline from the near attack, she hoped her words would be understood. "Please." She begged again, falling back in defeat. She took a shallow breath as her vision blurred more and more. She was fading away. The garden seemed like such a haven to her then.



     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
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  8. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    No sooner than the knife did fall from Alex's hand, so too did the sudden anger fall away from his heart. Each quiet word recited aloud, once more reminded him of the true breadth of god's grace. For it was in those words, often hindered by the moans and hisses of vents and pipes within the confines of his home, that he had first come to find a path in life. Though truth be told; until that moment many of the words were just rhetoric and kind pictures of unseen golden shores that he believed to no longer exist. For even among the flock of fathers and sons, there was no way to comprehend such feelings or such sights as had been wrote of and shared as gospel. There was no proof, only faith.

    Faith had carried Alex far in life. Through trials both physical and psychological. Yet it was in that very moment he realized the weight of what he had inscribed upon his soul and woven into the fabric of his mind. So many teachings lay dormant beneath the veil of misinterpretation and confusion, and yet now he could grasp at the beauty of more than a few hymns and songs heard at dusk and dawn. Now there was proof beyond the faith, and he could surely come to be forgiven if he let the words of the first father out through him,

    -"water?"-

    In a motionless moment of silence, the young man heard the words and for the briefest of instances, swore he could feel her eyes upon him as he hid away from their gaze. One question; a seemingly thoughtless and yet monumental step into the unknown, rang in Alex's ears as his eyes opened slightly and his vision found the form of the woman before him. Her tattered clothing, hair disheveled and dirty, eyes closed from exhaustion, and body barely moving as obvious fear and the urge to survive fought against each other inside her. He could taste the acrid buildup of bile in his throat; choking back both tears and the gutwrenching spasms that wanted to dangerously empty his stomach and drive him back into sweet unconsciousness.

    Fighting through the pain, into the territory of no return, he slowly and cautiously undid one of the many exterior pouches on his pack and retrieved a clear water bottle from within. Taking his time in every movement and action, he removed the screw on lid, slid the bottle forward across the floor between them, and cleared his throat in an attempt to gain some form of attention from her.

    He didnt know whether she could understand him; whether she could speak but a few words at all, but between the beats of his heart he could hear the unmistakeable words of father's before him giving him the strength to at least try. To try and communicate. To try and learn. To try and survive not just the wasteland, but the undeniable hardship of both loneliness and isolation. At first his words left his lips as nothing more than a whisper of air, but as the man's mind cleared, so too did the picture of each word forming. So too did the strength of his voice grow, and the power of each word take hold.

    -"And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased."-

    ="Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ"=

    -"Give, and it will be given to you... A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap... For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you"-

    His final words; not whispered, not of the gospel, not sheltered or sequestered away by law or edict, were crisp and direct. From his lips to her ears. No thought of what it would earn him or bring about. A true benevolence brought about by a pure desire to help someone in need before him.

    -"Please... Drink"-

    ((If possible, could you adjust the color for your writing. My screen and layout are making it difficult with how vibrant it is... Sorry to ask))
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
  9. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    She was still cautious of what waited before her, and it took nearly all her remaining strength just to reach forward for the water. Her eyes never wavered from him, from his body, from his state of existence against her own. She took in everything she could from his positioning, his clothing, the language his body spoke to her. It was different, but seemed so familiar. He wasn't like the others. She'd never seen someone structured the way the creature before her was. Nearly human. His body was sharper than hers, less curved, narrower where legs met torso. It was a strange sight to behold, to look upon something so familiarly foreign.

    Her nearly lifeless stare stayed focused on him as her hand inched forward more and more. Her eyes were once beautiful and vibrant, but they had faded to a pale and dim color that only just resembled color. If only she could see herself, she would wonder why the brown of the earth had left her. She was swallowed in a pit of death and agony and it had drained everything from her.

    Though she had been
    feeling an overwhelming need to run, she knew she would hardly be able to stand before falling. So she fought it off. As her fingers grazed against the bottle, she grunted. So much effort for such a small reward. She needed that water more than anything, her survival demanded it. But she wasn't sure if was meant to fear him. He'd stopped what would have been an attempt at her life, and graced her with what she asked. Betrayal is the worst of pain.

    Her fingers hooked around the bottle, and she pulled back quickly, nearly slamming into the racking that was holding her upright. She was primal in her quenching of thirst. She took every last drop the bottle in one swift breath, clutching it tight to her chest with a heavy exhale as the water rushed down her throat. She felt better almost immediately, but she knew it would take some time before she would be able to flee. She took in another deliberate and deep breath, holding out the bottle with a loose grip. She should have inspected the water first. She held her other hand to her lips, she'd entirely forgotten about the death grip she'd had on her machete.


    Only then did her eyes move, and it was as though she was apologizing. Apologizing for staying armed, apologizing for taking all the water. It was a short lived submission though. She brought her eyes back to him, a measure of his attire somewhat assured her he likely had more. Though, she was not going to ask again. She would bide her time, wait for the water to hydrate her enough, and then leave. Her people would likely be on her trail soon. Only one other person knew of her sanctuary, and while she hoped that they could be trusted, pain had a way of making people talk.

    She mulled over questions in her mind, wondering what to ask - if he would even understand her - if he was even intelligent enough to fully understand her. Just because he knew what 'water' meant, and had a level of intellect, it meant nothing. She noted the knife still lying on the floor of the shop.

    She only wanted to say good-bye to Her. It was the last trip she would ever be able to make to the shrine - and it had been interrupted by - something she didn't understand. There were too many thoughts rushing through to her as the water made its way around her body. Her mind was finally allowed to focus more clearly.

    "What are you?"
     
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  10. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    There was little fear or confusion left in Alex's mind as the young woman moved with a near feral and instinct driven bolt backwards. The water gone in an instant; blade still drawn and ready should he move and push her to the defensive. He knew he could be in trouble; aware of the duality of mankind and how fast an acquaintance could turn to a venemous enemy in an instant. The father's had all spoken in hushed tones about the dark days before the fall. Reliving tales and horrors spread down from generation to generation. Words not meant for the younger ones to hear or learn from. Words that were to remind the eldest of their goal and solidify their own righteous stand in the darkness.

    Too bad for them Alex was quiet, lithe and quite comfortable in the ruins of his home. He had learned of men and women; of procreation and the end of true birth by it. He had learned of the stages of development leading to the fall of humanity. He learned a great deal from the dark corners of his small room; listening through a narrow vent as the most ancient men whispered on into the night about the many rises and falls of civilization. The most vital piece of information he had ever clung to; gleaned from a simple conversation between the Eldest father and his disciple son, was one of an emotion that had long since passed over mankind and disappeared into the stars. He learned of love and of how it had created nations, usurped kings, rallied armies, bred hatred, and all manner of things in between. More than any machine, any technological advancement, any hatred born of the devil, so Alex had learned that love was the truest and most powerful weapon in this world. For good or for evil.

    When the woman again moved; bottle outstretched ever so slightly, with eyes no more vibrant than the dark and sullen clothing she wore, again Alex was overcome with the urge to do something. To say something. To help in some way possible. So without fearing his life or soul were in danger, and turning his back to the young woman, he retrieved yet another bottle of water, as well as a small pouch from within his pack. He sealed the bag back up before turning around to face her, and with as gentle a smile as he could muster: Though smiling was certainly uncommon in the life he lived, he slid forward the pouch and the bottle. Halfway between the two, a meeting point for divergent worlds either had believed non existent.

    -"Theres food, and water if you need it... It's not much... certainly not for more than a day, but you can have it if you'd like"-

    The young man's gaze diverted as he spoke; an uncomfortable shyness and hesitation at hearing his own voice pulling his eyes to the floor before the items.

    -"I have other stuff if you'd like... a few protein bars and a jacket if..."-

    His voice and words trailed off as he realized that the woman might not understand at all. That he might be pushing too far, asking too much, talking to himself. In reality, the thought that it was all an illusion or mirage had crossed his mind once or twice since seeing the woman. That perhaps she was just a trick played by the devil to seduce him away from his job; his life task. He had wondered in moments between bated breath whether or not he was simply talking to himself whilst alone in the small and nearly empty store.
     
  11. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    You have food?" Her words rushed out before she weighed the situation to it's entirety. Without thought, her machete fell from her grasp, and she reached for both the water and food. She stopped just short of clutching them, keeping her eyes on him. She had no reason to trust him, and hundreds not to. She calmed her movements, taking both gifts he'd offered to her with a slow receipt. Once she was nestled back to a safe distance she sat herself up. She looked a bit more stern than before, leaving the blade rested at her side. It was safely within her reach, should he try another attack.

    She tore open the pouch of food, and gave it one simple sniff before convincing herself it wasn't the meat she was accustom to. She shifted her stare back to him, and devoured it. It took only a few seconds, before it was crushed to bits and she was swallowing it down. Before the food even made its way to her stomach, she gulped down more water, letting our an exacerbated sigh after it was emptied. Relief washed over her, and she felt so freed from the grasp death had on her, that she allowed herself to close her eyes, even if only for a moment. In her near slumber, her breath fell to a much shallower rate, and the memories of the garden filled her mind.

    It was a world she'd wished to visit again, a world she wished to create. So beautiful and full of life. Sustained within itself in every imaginable way. The fact the memory remained so clear, when she hadn't see in it nearly 10 years was nothing short of a miracle for her. And as much as she desired to return to that world, she feared it was impossible to achieve. She'd lived so much of her life left in the dark - and not just by her keepers, but by herself. She'd blocked off so much of her own past, so much of her childhood, so much of the paths that were forced upon her, that she could hardly remember any truth but one. Her mother. She knew not of how she came to be, or how others came to be. She knew not the origins of the children at her home, she only knew the garden, and all it's workings. To breathe life unto a wasteland of death.

    It was a vast land of greenery that, at one time, encompassed all she knew, all she saw. Life was beautiful then. But those memories were so far off she could never fully piece them together. There were always missing spots scattered about, like an old film desperate to play, but cut together wrong. She just wanted to go back to that. But it was impossible. The only thing she remembered consistently was the figure and Her. But, even though the figure was prominent in her memories, they were still invisible to her mind - just a blotch of a person without description. A faceless body with a nameless existence.

    "It's not going to be safe here much longer." She winced, shifting her weight around until she found the strength to stand.
    She bent and reached for her machete, tucking it safely against her waist. "You should go back to... wherever you came from, else they'll make a meal of you."
     
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  12. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    The few words returned to Alex from the young woman sent a shiver down his spine. Her warning mirrored his father's own. "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live" He understood now; having been indoctrinated into the hunting group with both laws and rules regarding the outside world, that there were indeed those dressed in the devils ways. Those who would lay veils upon the righteous and consume with blasphemous gluttony, the ways of the lord. Alex shuddered, only one thing lay painted in his mind, as he casually slung the black backpack over his shoulder and lifted his knife from the floor before standing.

    The image of a brother; of a son dead in the street twenty miles outside of their home. Limbs missing, body torn and broken beyond recognition. Consumed with feral fingers and teeth. Scratches, cuts, lacerations layered over and over til there was naught but a near puddle of once righteous humanity. Alex had stood in that spot time and time again in his mind, wondering what horrid creature; what abomination, had devoured one of his kin, and yet he always knew somewhere deep down. There were no more animals to be hunted outside of the smallest prey. No more deer grazed, no more cattle roamed, no more birds flew in the sky. Mice, rats, the rodents and smallest of survivors now remained entranched in their survival fight alongside humanity, and none of those could have done what Alex had witnessed.

    Nothing but a flesh and blood human could fight with such animosity and without restraint. Leave no tracks and yet leave behind meat to rot.

    The memory gagged the man for a moment as he finished stretching up to his full height and slipped the k-bar back into the sheath at his right hip. It had been so long now that he wished it all a nightmare. Too real was the womans concern though; too wise and prominent the words of his elders in his ears. Alex knew now that the threat lurking in the wild cities was other humans.

    -"Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live"- Came his reply once more. This time aloud and with interest in hearing a reaction from the woman. "Be they like you or monsters bred of the devil" He continued as his left hand; wrapped in leather strips, reached beneath one of the overlapping layers of fabric criss crossing his torso, and pulled forth what was once a miracle of modern technology. Now a mere relic stolen forward in time and given new purpose. There in his left hand was a small nine millimeter handgun: All black, no markings or etchings, no fancy words or unique features. It was merely an ancient military surplus weapon for close quarters defense that had lasted the ages and won the test of time. Such weapons were not gone nor entirely forgotten, but the same could not be said for the ammunition.

    Of which Alex had but one clip, a mere twenty rounds.

    Never had he fired the weapon; nor had he ever wanted to use it, but he had been taught every intricacy to its operation as well as to the measures of safety to take when holding it.

    "If you seek to leave, feel free to do so." Alex's smile returned faintly as he turned to look upon the woman.

    " I shall stand here, before the wrath of the devil, and fight til the fury of god leaves my body, and I can no longer move. I will strike down as the arm; the hand, the sword, and smite those wicked and damnable things as have been made in the devils image"

    The young man continued speaking as he walked from the store and out into the street. Preparing himself mentally with a very unorthodox and self imposed sermon. He hoisted the gun overhead; admiring first the way the light caught each crease and curve, then admiring how god had led him to that place in that moment. He had a purpose once again, and though he may fall upon his own sword in sorrow at the outcome the day to come, he would not end without doing as the lord had instructed.

    "Come devil. Come to me and reap what you have sewn"
     
  13. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    She could do nothing but watch him leave, eyes narrowed in on him as he recited teachings she'd heard cast down amongst her kind. She couldn't help but feel his definition of life, and creation was different than her own. She thought about what he had said to her, dissecting it the best she could. How he spoke it, 'Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live'. with what seemed to her to be an invocation. As if expecting her to respond with some type of malice. A trap. She was more than happy to oblige in showing him just how devilish she could be, should the opportunity warrant itself. Though, she was nothing like the people she came from. She envied them not for the atrocities they had committed, and the barbaric deeds they carried out with such little morality.

    She blamed herself for remaining unaware for so long, or rather, trying to deny it to herself. But one can only listen to the cries of children for so long before finally cracking at the abhorrent actions. She had a plan that was to be set into motion - but the chaos of her leave of the garden had caused her to sacrifice preparedness. And, while her survival skills were strong, she had come to realize she had relied to heavily on others. She lacked the know how of certain skills that would make survival for herself, and the destruction of the damned, much more difficult to achieve. Somehow, they had managed to mend and manipulate her mind - convincing her that the evils they burnished across the town were simply to keep them safe.

    She had blindly believed every world that had fallen from Junipers lips. That woman's tongue was poison, and their ears the rats. Somehow she happened to realize it just as the animal meat had finally run out.That was Aurora's only saving grace. She had escaped her keepers upon the first ritual meal served. It was a graduation of sorts. The eldest children, on the eve of the 18th winter, were destined to devour the meat of children. It was a way to keep their population low.

    It was the sound of screaming that finally woke her from disbelief, and forced her to recognize the true atrocities before her. Juniper had been feeding all the children the same meat. There's nothing quite like the smell of burning human flesh. So she ran. She ran without preparing herself for survival. She ran without concern that they would likely come for her, realizing she knew their truth.

    Of course her plan was to destroy the camp in its entirety, but doing so would have required more ammunition and weaponry than one person could handle. She knew no one outside of her camp, and perhaps that was why she retreated to the store - her sanctuary. It was a place she would be happy to die in, so be it. She would be near Her portrait, and her soul would be carried back to the garden. Perhaps her memories would repair, and the shadow could be named. Death didn't seem like such a pitiful thing anymore.
    So many things had happened because of Juniper and her army, and Aurora would be remiss if she didn't suspect that Her death was caused by Junipers desire for both power, and food.

    'People will go mad with hunger.'


    She took after him, wondering if those steps would be her last.
     
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  14. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    In cadence with the young woman's steps outward and into the street, Alex turned his eyes upon her and there was no joy left within them. What he planned to do; what must be done, he knew to be something awful, something unforgiveable, yet necessary for the sanctity of his people and all people who had not yet fallen. With pistol in hand the young man reached his free arm across his opposite shoulder and seemed to press and hold a small circular button just below the strap of his pack.

    Seconds passed as he stood there waiting; gun barrel gleaming in the light, sweat beginning to run down across his brow and into his eyes, and then suddenly a low hiss and pop echoed from the unseen device being powered on. A small radio transciever; connected through his backpack to a layer of solar cells at the top of the bag. When the mechanism for recieving and sending transmissions stopped its initial whining wakeup, he tilted his head in the direction of the device and began to speak. Once again in a whisper so soft the woman would have had to of moved closer to hear.

    -"Hunter seven, Alex North, reporting in. Localized, potential threat imminent at location. Five minutes beyond the border, due north approximately seventeen miles east north east. Father forgive me"-

    The transmission ended as it began; a mere hiss and low pop preceeded by dead silence. Alex needn't wait for a reply; his sin was admitted, his task and life now forfeit for the greater good. He would claim vengeance for his brother and let the righteous wrath and anger he felt be the fuel for what was to come.

    Or so he told himself...

    After all, no one wants to die. No one wants to wait out their last moments without fighting back. Not even the devout, the believers, wanted to simply die as if it was destined. Secretly, beneath the calm demeanor of hatred and scorn, the young man wallowed in the fear of death. He sank inch by inch lower into the pool of his own instinct to run. It took all he had to stand stoic and steel himself for the time being. Another few minutes more... Another few minutes...

    Would his resolve win. Would the courage driven by a sense of duty and determination outlive the fear and panic clawing at his soul?

    ...
     
  15. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    Confusion overtook her. She kept her eyes squinted in his direction, somewhat because of the sun, somewhat because of what she assumed he was about to do. 'He can't fight them off.' she thought. She made her way to him, only a few steps in before hearing - something that made her more fearful of him than she originally deemed necessary. She retreated to shelter, behind a pile of ruble mostly comprised of cement. She knelt down, watching him, watching his lips move as he spoke, unable to hear. Her colony would soon descend upon them, and the darkness that followed their steps would be a plague across what humanity was left in that region.

    She finally caught a good look at his hand, what he held in it. She tried to focus her eyes. Parts of her body were still riddled with exhaustion. It was that which she'd only heard of. Her people had passed stories of men in suits painted to look like the world. They came and destroyed, leaving nothing but sorrow in their wake. The weapons they carried would screech loudly into the world, echoing all around, ending their enemies life while remaining safely at a distance. She still didn't know how. But she was going to find out.

    She stood, brazen, making her way over to him. Dusk was upon them, and her kind always hunted in the night. Her pace quickened until she finally closed the distance between then, staring down at his hand, and the weapon he held in it. She tilted her head to look at it, as if she could decipher its inner workings, its physics. The only conclusion she came to, it looked strange, and not much like a weapon.

    'Like death incarnate they will come for you, for your spirit and body are pure.' She stopped as the thought flooded her mind, forcing her stare back up to meet him. It took a few moments to finalize the decision she was coming close to making. Those words, they carried so much weight to them, simple in structure but endless in meaning.


    "Come with me," She said, pointedly blank to him. Her sight never wavered from him. "Like death incarnate, they will come for you.... for your spirit and body are pure." She paused, waiting to see if he would respond. "The wicked are restless, and their destruction endless. Only those pure from birth may regrow the earth." She hadn't a clue what the last part meant - but it was something her mother had always spoken to her. A repetitive lesson, that while the understanding of which was left out, the words themselves clung to her.

    "You can't survive them."
     
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  16. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    The countdown to nightfall had begun, and Alex knew he couldnt stand in the street waiting forever. He would eventually tire; the darkness would bring about the legions of scurrying mice and rats that swarmed the desecated landscape, and before the sun once more rose, he would surely be nearly dead on his feet. He had so little time to make a decision. So few options available. He could run home; flee straight back into the fury of his fathers and let his punishment be dealt, or he could hide and wait out the coming night. He was uncertain how to proceed, where to turn, what to do, and to his surprise the young woman still hadnt left him alone in the street yet.

    Was it a blessing or a curse?

    Words snapped him out of his trance with unsuspecting force; and before Alex gave thought to his own actions, he had turned to face the woman speaking to him. Though in sharp contrast to her disheveled and weary appearance, Alex too was worn down and nearly exhausted from the day's excitement and travels. The gun in his hand seemed to weigh a ton; pulling not just on his arm but his soul as the power to end life was held firm in his grip. He listened to the woman's words; an icy edge to each syllable, a rough blade that tore at his thoughts as he watched her. She did not reflect the ice or danger hidden within her speech; nor did she seem imposing in the least bit, but Alex had no choice but to find out in the fastest manner possible. There just wasnt any time to waste.

    He couldnt afford to be tricked. To be lured into a trap by a devil in disguise.

    Slowly the gun barrel rose; levelling out with his shoulder as he pointed it straight at the woman nearby. His green eyes were full of confusion, but his heart and soul were made into stone for that one moment. He needed to remain determined: For his sake at least. In that moment he was resolute and unmoveable, as he aimed the barrel at the woman's heart and looked upon her without malice or contempt. This time, it was his turn to speak cold steel words with very dangerous purpose. This time the warning would come from his mouth.

    "If you betray me, or turn against me, I will strike you down." His eyes never left her as he spoke, but he cautiously began moving ever closer. "If you are to be trusted... believed... Then you will prove it here and now"

    Alex didnt know what to expect; or even how he would respond to such words, but he had to provoke something. He needed a reaction or response to gauge. He could no longer be naive enough to simply assume she was a lost innocent soul, alone in the dead world, and he had run into her without some reason. There was always a reason; a path laid out before each person, and if this was to be his, he had to know whether he was taking it of his own will, or if the devil now tried to drag him along instead.

    "Know this to be true... I do not wish to harm you... But I will should I need to"

    The last words fell from Alex's mouth with a fabricated harshness. The true disgust at himself for speaking such evil, while being honest, weighed on him in secret, and yet he could not allow even a shred of weakness to be seen. He had to be prepared to act on his words. To stay honest to himself and the scriptures he was bred into. He needed her to believe, for but one moment, that he could and would kill her. It was the only way to draw out the truth.

    He needed to know the truth...
     
  17. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    She took a small step back, realizing the weight of his words, the threat, so obvious and barren. Her hand, more out of instinct than anything else, went for her machete, though she wasn't prepared to draw it. From the stories she had heard, his weapon would likely end her before her blade could even slice the thick and hot air around them. But the movement had already been made, she'd, unintentionally, expressed loud and clear that she too would strike him if required. Life begets life, and death begets death. She stopped, turning her eyes from him to her hand, looking as the tips of her fingers along her holster. She was caked in dirt, sweat, blood. Death begets death. She moved her hand to retreat, a resting place at her side instead. Such a simple movement spoke so much.

    She kept her stare on him, too reluctant to move her attention from him. She was prepared for death, should it befall her. The itching in her to draw her blade was hard to fight, though combat was not something she did often, she was always ready for it when necessary. Her life had made it a necessity more often than not. And that meant she was ready to fight even what remained of her people. She was not going to leave him to be eaten alive by inhuman creatures, by monsters that had lost all morality - they were a chaotic plague, locust that soon would eradicate all that remained. Nothing but death and sorrow would be left in their wake.

    But the fear he had put upon her, with such a brazen display of power had frozen her. The stories alone had rattled her all through childhood, yet, somehow, she had survived most of adolescence without ever coming into contact with anyone - especially a creature of false earth - who held the weapon he had. Her people were brought up with fear as governing. Aurora knew the truth though. There wasn't always something to fear. She had read the journals, the tales, the stories and memories of those before her. She knew that the chaos and destruction was swift, and what remained after was true harmony. Juniper had made sure to snuff it out, demanding control through fear. But the garden, the garden before Juniper's rule was pure and peaceful. It was a distant memory, but one that left a hard impression on her.

    "Do not fear death," She spoke, her words were hard and rigid, as if she spoke a charm to ease herself into her unavoidable death. "For you will become the trees, and the water, and the air." She moved towards him,
    "For you will be one with that which birthed you." She stopped, feeling the the metal pressed against her chest. Her eyes closed as she spoke, waiting for him to put her down, to end her miserable life. "You will be the earth, and the sun, and the stars." Her voice shook, tears begging to fall from her eyes. She did everything she could to get through the words, to recite them to completion. "You will be life in death. And- and through it -" her voice broke. "And through it, you will be."

    ((I feel like my replies are toooooo short :C ))
     
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  18. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    With the muzzle of his gun flush with the woman's chest, Alex could do little but sigh. He hadn't the nerve to take a life unprovoked. He wasnt the kind of man to take such a step. Yet there he stood; positioned to kill, with a finger lingering on the trigger. What had driven him to that point? What misstep had taken him down that path, and to the edge of reason? He knew he had to kill her, or trust her, and neither one was something he knew how to do. What would his father do? What would his brothers do? What would god have him do? The questions lingered in his mind as the distance til fruition; the distance between the trigger being touched and pulled, narrowed and a choice grew closer.

    He closed his eyes in an attempt to clear his mind. To wash away the insanity and brutality of the world for but a single second. Yet it availed him no peace of mind. Not a single instant of clarity. He was lost in a sea that boiled and frothed from the anger of his god, and no ship nor land lay within sight. What was he to do? Give up? or Give in? The quiet was unnerving and served only to draw Alex's attention further away from making a decision. Everything lingered on a hair's breadth worth of movement, and yet there was no telling how long that moment waited. The young man gritted his teeth; choosing to open his eyes and bear witness to the commitment of his most grievous sin, and was shook to his core as he did.

    Before him he could see now just how frightened and just how tormented the woman was. Her body tensed and her eyelids twitched as she fought back against her own demons. He heard her in that moment; for the first time grasping and taking hold of each word she spoke. A beautiful and almost biblical phrase followed by another. He took care to keep listening as the young woman continued to speak; her sheer determination to continue driving her forward though her body and soul seemed as though it would crack open and spill forth. Alex was awestruck and terrified. Not of her, nor of the things that would steal him away in the night. Nor of his father's fury, and his due punishment. Instead he was afraid of letting her continue. Afraid that if she reached the end of her soliliquy, that she would simply vanish. So many memories seemed bound to the words she battered her way through, and when finally she halted, Alex knew that enough was enough.

    His weapon, his hands, would not be used to torture a soul such as hers was being tortured. He would not, and could not hold her life at stake, when it was so obvious she was already acquainted with death tenfold over. So it was with a light sigh, and a gesture of surrender: Holstering the gun and stepping back from the woman with a silent prayer for the both of them, that he gave up on the righteous end to a potential witch, and let the smallest temptation of decency take hold in him. He whispered once more to himself before speaking aloud to her; a final parting with the only family he had known "Forgive me Father's For I am Sin"

    "I am not worthy to judge you. Nor can I do it without being judged myself... So you are free to go as you please" Alex's voice was ragged and held almost no force anymore. The cold determination and grit that was once there, was now replaced by a sad and sympathetic warmth. "I will wait out the coming night if I must, and be on my way to exile come morning"

    With a smile that was no more happy than it was warm, he turned away from the woman and began walking straight down the road. How far he would run come daylight, how far he could go in a week. He had no idea, no plans, no future to look towards. He had chosen isolation and seclusion over giving up on his humanity. Whatever was left of it in his world anyways...
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2019
  19. xKyosan

    xKyosan Well-Known Member Member

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    "You don't understand. Nightfall is when they attack, this... they will eat you alive." She stood silent and still for a moment, watching after him. "Where do you come from?" It was becoming clearer to her with every passing second that he had never come into contact with the vermin before - how she couldn't be sure. Her people were not the first to abandon their humanity. Her village had hunted down and slain those deemed guilty of Devouring The Flesh. It was so common just outside the garden, that it was something they had to constantly battle before the fall of her mother, and the rise of Juniper. Juniper's soldiers never bothered to weigh their guilt - they only slaughtered those who refused servitude.

    The wind pushed hard against her, forcing her hood down so that her long tattered hair could blow free. It shinned bright tones of red as the sun beat down hot waves against her. She claimed it to be a sign of the soon coming attack, the world alerting to her to the monstrous humans that would soon roam free. It took so much of her strength not to argue with him. She should, in all honesty, have left him there to be devoured by the locust that she knew would descend once the sun was swallowed by the distant mountains. But she couldn't. Her curiosity to him was too strong - something she'd never seen, and for him to appear whilst she begged Her for answers - it had to be a sign.

    She took a cautious step after him, hoping the sound of her boots rustling against the debris of the fallen town would turn his attention back to her. Seeing death so close, lurking on the horizon of the sunset, no shelter in sight, her freedoms weight was hard to bear. Another step, quicker. She could feel the warmth of the sun fading into the distance, and the sky began to disappear into a dark blue abyss, small specs of white abound. They would come soon - they would come for them both, and feast.

    'Never shall you go hungry in the garden, for you breathe into it life, and it life into you." Her words rung clear. "Never shall you take a life unless to free a tortured soul corrupt by a sickness of the mind.' Perhaps she knew where to go after all. Her pace quickened to catch up with the stranger, she grabbed onto him, trying to usher him out of the street and to a small alley.

    "You don't have to die here." Her desire for survival was persistent, though, she couldn't figure out why she wanted to live in a world so destroyed.
     
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  20. Vitriosk

    Vitriosk *Lurks* Member

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    1:27 PM
    Alex was so distracted by his own ambitions and drive, that he had all together missed what the woman behind him was saying. He stared longingly ahead at nothing; a remorse and sorrow dredged up from within him, threatening to crush him should he let it. There was so little he had truly known in the world outside of prayers and searching ruins for food. He had never known true friendship, or kinship, or comradery. He wasnt even sure if those things were real. Or if they were just ideas held aloft by words his fathers threw around. They had taught him so many things of the world before the fall. Of automobiles and cities that breached the heavens. They had filled his head with memories not his own, and of fears they all held in their hearts. The fear of falling from gods grace, from being damned, from purgation and hell. These fears and these scarring reminders of what awaited him if he sinned were all that Alex had ever had or known.

    Fear had driven him. Motivated him. Given him purpose. Through the fear he had conquered many mountains and trials. He learned to read and to write in the ancient script. He learned to run and hunt the small vermin that were common place amongst the ruins. He learned how to follow and never disobey. The edicts and laws. The commandments passed down and hoisted up as the penultimate rules of the universe, were all Alex had known for the last eighteen years. Yet in one single moment, the darkest of stories, and the most horrible of rumors amongst the fathers was made real. There were monsters out there. Demons and devils that took human form. That lurked and stalked the shadows. Waiting to consume the flesh, drink the blood, and spread like a new plague across the earth.

    Not only that, but there were women too. The daughters of Eve. Those who his fathers' had spoke of in whispered reverie and quiet, solemn tones. He knew they had to be real at one time or another. Birth and death required a female until just before the fall of humanity. He just didnt know there were any left. He had been told of the difference between men and women; the fairer of the sexes being something he only knew to be akin to angels according to his teachings and the rarely told stories of them from the most ancient of elders. Not a man alive inside the covenant aside from him had ever seen one in person. No others had ever beheld the beauty someone not a man, and so they had all listened with great curiosity to each story told of them. They turned to their bible for the rest of their faith-bound truths.

    Alex knew though, that those were wild and wide range. One moment a woman was to be a possession, and the next she was the light that gave life. From witch to mother of all men. He didnt know what to think anymore. Whether women were the kin of satan, or whether they were some treasure that had been hidden away from mankind. He couldnt keep wondering on the subject either, considering how close nightfall was. He had to get his senses together, and pull himself away from that monstrous ledge leading into such vast contemplation. Luckily for him, something quickly battered down upon his moment of inflection, as the woman had gripped ahold of his arm and attempted to stop him.

    Alex would ordinarily have leapt away or turned with knife in hand at the threat of danger in any form. Told to be ever vigilant in the dead lands, for the wicked fingers and claws of the devil could be hiding in wait anywhere. Instead though, he turned his face towards the young woman and listened to her. He was so tired and worn out from the confusing day and expedition away from home that he had no more fight in him. He knew struggling in vain would only leave him weaker, and so he let her take his attention and draw him away from the path he was setting down.

    "Where then do we go?" He asked pointedly. "And if I dont have to die here... Then why am I here?"

    His words were not meant just for the woman as she spoke. They were in turn meant for himself as he wondered what fork in the road he had taken to lead himself so far astray.