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Author Topic: After 12 AM. [Lanetic Sub-story]  (Read 1519 times)

Offline FaintSilhouette

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After 12 AM. [Lanetic Sub-story]
« on: November 16, 2014, 11:18:44 PM »
Before anyone reads this, please understand that there are few people on this game that have the proper background to actually understand this piece. There is a lot of information missing as it assumed those specific readers already know, so if you're not one of them, its probably going to only confuse you.

In a long line of trials, there is something about the first success that can drive you to victory. Itís that first taste of freedom, of possibility, and confidence that perhaps what you intended to do wasn't so "crazy" to start with. I had made it around numerous lava fields, volcanic caves, and fumaroles and acquired the fire orb in a matter of months. Imagine my surprise when I was told that I had practically had to walk into hell itself first thing, but it made sense to go. It was the closest to home and I still had two more years before the next would be in my possession, but I had a friend who put the idea in my head that perhaps I wasn't so out of my mind for trying, for putting faith in myself as my people did.

My goal was simple, but not easily achieved; find all six orbs to be able to approach and retrieve a fragment of the solar stone, otherwise known as the Second Sun. Then, take that fragment and go about finding and destroying Xylem. At first, I felt this was something too ambitious for a mere wolf such as myself. It sounded more like an epic suited for some creature of a higher power but given that the last guardian died with the last demon, the Naraylan people ended up having to settle for me. Needless to say, I... wasn't enthusiastic about this idea and case of mistaken identity at all  However, before I back up too far, let us continue forward as this mindset I had was revoked soon after I found the fire orb. Nothing could have prepared for my next challenge... and I'll give you a hint, it had nothing to do with the orbs or Xylem.

I'm sure any of the other ladies out there will understand what a lone female wolf roaming the countryside looks like to any male out doing the same. So what was my problem? Casanovas. Casanova wolves everywhere and none as notorious as Midnight.

Midnight met me, tossing and rolling in the dirt in an effort to disguise myself. Clearly I did a piss poor job as he still managed to find me. I didn't want a mate, much less a one night stand. That's not to say there was anything inherently wrong with him being tall, dark and handsome but Iím certain by now he was more than a little confused about why I never responded to his advances.

It wasn't like we were total strangers. I remembered meeting him once or twice before, but the facts remained.  I was too busy, too naive, and a little too overwhelmed at the time. I admit it even took me a while to catch on as to why he was even there in the first place. Still, thinking about the impression I must have given him and many other packs  over in those hills both embarrasses and amuses me. I have to wonder if the same happened to Xylem before he slipped off into the Threshold realm. It must have, after all, a Naraylan wolf rarely roams except for one reason and one reason only. Perhaps I'll never know, but itís funny to look back on.

Eventually, as I made it into the Windswept Corridor to seek out the second orb, Midnight finally got the message, but to my surprise, he didn't leave. Knowing that he would have to traverse hellish sandstorms, he still followed me. This is where I really started questioning, if only in my head, his true intentions. Why follow if there is nothing for him? Would it not be more worth his while to go chasing other girls in the late hours of the night? I never got a straight answer.

 In the darkness of a world with no sun, the desert is no more than cold. Midnight's presence made the nights a little warmer, but he had accompanied me as no more than a friend. With his guidance and knowledge of the desert, I found the Air Orb. It was the easiest of the six to obtain. As it was left mostly unguarded, we took it and went on our way into the Old Paradise to find the Lightning Orb.

When we arrived, Midnight made the comment that he "didn't understand why they called it the 'Old' Paradise." Was there a new paradise? If there was, what was wrong with the one we were in? It was muggy, but tropical and beautiful. Now when I say tropical, I use that term loosely to describe the biome I am familiar with. Your idea of what is 'tropical' is bound to be different. At its warmest, this place had the feel of a solid, Caribbean winter.

 As we delved further, we soon discovered remnants of former civilizations, both human and animal in origin, and both terribly advanced in nature.  The two of us were armed with meager means of weaponry at best. There was a sword for each of us, a metal ring on his neck to protect his throat, a spiked collar on mine. We set off into the ruins only to find that some of the machines still functioned and that the lightning orb was quite a ways off, resting in the back of an old mansion.

 I lost a lot of fur that year. Much of it fell out where I had been shocked or from stress. The mechanical 'monsters' were more trouble than the beasts of the volcano if only by virtue of us not being able to strike or bite them. I only hit one with my sword once and I learned very quickly not to do it again. I was electrocuted as a result. Our teeth and claws were just as, if not more useless for the same reasons, and so we resolved to flee from every from virtually everything as a result.

At last we made our way into an old hallway with beautiful stained glass and oriental rugs. There had been three chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. One of the three chandeliers had fallen onto the floor at the entrance of the room, so the two of us gingerly crept around it, unsure of what had brought it down. I could see the lightning orb on its pedestal just on the other side but what I didn't see was far more deadly. "Lanetic, look out!"  Midnight's usually deep voice had shifted pitches to a high, pain filled scream and I turned back to behold a metal giant. It had seized Midnight by the leg. Upside down in his metal grip, he snapped and squirmed. I watched, horrified, as he was burned and sliced from toe to nose with a laser, and dropped on top of the fallen chandelier.

In an instant, the only guide or sense of direction that I had was gone. I always pictured if something was to happen to us on this journey of ours that it would have meaning, rhyme, or reason. But no. Left with no time to grieve, I sailed across the room, using the rug to my advantage. Sliding across the slick floor, I made it halfway down the hall until a heavy weight fell upon my shoulders. While my front legs were pinned down, and my hind feet were useless at that point, I could only turn my head and look. A pair of brightening, electronic red eyes stared back at me and I shrank away into the floor. I don't really know what I was seeking at that point. A swift death? Mercy? What would a machine know of mercy? Absolutely nothing, but the weight was lifted and I was freed. It wasn't until much later on in my journey on how my freedom was gained. The robot in question was resistant to doing Xylem's bidding, and in such, he saw me as an ally.

As for why he took Midnight's life, I understand now that aside from simple desires, Midnight had originally approached me only with ill intentions. I have come to speculate that Midnight may have been acting as Xylem's brother in conflict somewhere at the beginning, and that is what led to this creature's mathematical decision to end his life. To be fair though, I cannot see a man that would put his own wellbeing in jeopardy for my own to be of evil. I knew him as a friend and I will remember him as such, even if it goes against my better judgment. There's too much laughter, too much senseless and playful banter, and too many sacrifices made that I can't allow myself to see him any other way. If he wanted to take my life, he had plenty of opportunities and some would dare to say I may have changed him. As for me, I don't think I did anything but either way, rest soundly, old friend

Lanetic, Rune, and Tiberius drawn by Bazookaneon