[identity profile] nadriel.livejournal.com
One of my first efforts with the first person. As always, I don't rate it that highly, but it's not my worst piece of work.

To spare your screens )
[identity profile] lslaw.livejournal.com
He used to be a fixture at all the gatherings, but a quiet one; an Adamant Sage of simple words and few, but devastating, actions. He'd sit - perhaps with one or two of his angels, the young mages who gathered around him - and observe, and when he spoke the wise would listen, but other than that, unless you knew, you'd not have thought him anything special.

And now the world trembles with a sound like the thunder of an angel's wings every time he is near. Now, his footsteps ring with destiny. I fear his anger all the more because I have never seen it.

When my children were taken, he told me: "If I help, we have a better chance of getting them back, but there is a greater chance of them being hurt," and I knew what he meant. I thanked him and I refused his help, for all that I know him to be capable of, because to involve him would be to make my loved ones pawns in a game greater than I can yet conceive.

He walks a different road now and can not walk but a short way with us. It is a path mightier even than he has trod before, and a lonely one. I would not for all the world be in his shoes, but it gladdens me to know that he is there; that if our enemies should play a hand in that game, he will be there to meet it, and that if they threaten such, he is there to call their bluff.

Once, he was known as Scooby, now as Richard, for his power is such that he need not cloak himself in grand names. He has true greatness.
[identity profile] lslaw.livejournal.com
They tried to kill my children.

A lot happened today, but ultimately that's all I can think about, because the world is big enough and old enough to look after itself, but they tried to kill my children.

Ruby is angry, but it's covered by her relief. She's been changed by all this, and she probably thinks for the better, but I can see that she's thinking that she did the right thing when she killed, not the necessary thing. It's a slippery slope and I'll need to watch her, because she doesn't realise that just because something has to be done, that does not preclude that thing being wrong.

I want to hunt down and kill every one of those involved and stick their heads on spikes. I will find out who was responsible for this and see their plans in ruin before they die. One of those is necessary, one of them is not; neither is right, but one of them I will do because I have to, to protect my family.

One of my babies was blasted into the air by an explosion. If the magic protecting her hadn't come back up at that moment, I don't know what might have happened, but it did and she's fine. Ruby is fussing, but they're babies; they're practically over it already. It's Nuinia for whom I worry. She knows full well what happened to her, she had an enemy Mage invade her dreaming mind, and this is not the first time she's faced her own death this year. If I survive past the New Year I'm going to have to spend more time with my daughter.

I'll plan for that later, but for now it's hard to see past the moment; past the fact that I almost lost them all.

And I know that someone needs to die, because they tried to kill my children.
[identity profile] autumn-skald.livejournal.com
OOC: For the beginnings challenge I thought I would do something from Ishtar's childhood and since her family has been coming to mind more often recently I thought I would use them as a setting. Hope it makes sense :)

Born of Fire )
[identity profile] haraphen.livejournal.com
“Are you listening to me boy?” a rough firm hand clips my head and breaks my reverie. I was thinking about ice cream. We saw a boy the other day with a cone filled with it and it looked nice. I’ve never tried any before, never had the time. I wonder what it’s like. Sweet? Cold? would it hurt my teeth? I don’t know.

“Yes Papa.” I reply. and with that he knows I’m lying. Tony Adams is my foster father but he would never let me call him that. It was always just Tony, or Mr Adams. So he smacks me again.

“Focus boy!” He passes me the weapon his hand easily hold it still but it takes two of mine to hold the point steady. He pushes me towards the kitchen table his warm hand on my shoulder steadying me. “What are the first two rules?”

I stand up on a stool and look down at the figure on the table. His limbs are tied to the legs of the table and a balled up rag stopped him from screaming out. His breathing was erratic and his pupils dilated with fear. My voice responds to Tony’s question but the words echo hollow in my ears. “The second rule is ‘The heart or the head. Destroy one quickly then the second to be sure.’” The wood in my hands began to feel damp with sweat.

“And the first rule?” His voice grew agitated and impatience.

And the lessons sink in. The captured man's breathing is too shallow to be of use. His skin too pale and the look of fear wasn't rational. It was primal. It wasn't human. My hands now feel dry and steady. I reverse my grip and hold the point over the man's heart, I utter the first rule like a religious mantra. “‘Never falter.’” Tony slams a hammer down on the base of the stake and the sound of ribs break as i'm sprayed with blood. The man falls still and we get to work.

The next part was just routine. Grab the gas can soak the body and the room. Let the gas oven fill the kitchen with a cigarette left burning in an ashtray of the next room.

Latter in the murky street illuminated by the burning building. Tony smiles at me happy with the work we've done and I decide to take a risk. “Tony?”

He grunt recognition as he secures the bag of tools on his shoulder. “Good work tonight kid. Real good work.”

I swallow involuntarily and my throat is dry, probably from the smoke. “Can we get some ice cream?”

He stops and stares at me. He’s backlit by the fire so i can't read his face. for a second i think he’s going to hit me for being stupid or selfish. But his eyes start to glint. To shine a wet fiery orange. I convince myself they can't be tears but i think he sees me now. Not as his pupil. Not as someone he has to protect. Not as someone he’s teaching to kill. But as the 10 year old boy i am.

We stay staring at eachother for a while until he finally clears his throat. “Sure Son. You earned it.” And I’m not sure what makes me happier. Him saying ‘Sure’. Or him saying ‘Son’.

[identity profile] haraphen.livejournal.com

A knife flashed in moonlight making fur damp and tangled.

Claws raked skin exposing wet meat under slowly soaking torn cloths.

Monsters blood pools with my own. A sanguine sea.

And i dive.

My lungs fill with liquid lead and with each breath I am scorched. So painful it is cold. Pain that prickles in my limbs that will not move. I float on waves of conciseness. Nausea the only evidence of me being awake. Then its all gone.

Everything.

I'm left standing on an empty plain. Rivers of black stretch away like tar filled veins. I feel heavy, my boots dig deep into the cracked dusty ground. The air is filled with despair, with half heard begging and i fear if i stay here i will join the invisible tortured horde.

So i walk towards the only landmark. A dark tower that breaks the uniformed horizon. And each step is a herculean trial. My feet dig trenches in the earth. The legion of voices beg me to stay. To rest. To remain here. And for a second i do.

But i do not belong here.

And this land won't claim me.

Each step is as hard as the last and with each step i seem to gain no distance. The tower is still on the horizon. Maring its perfect line. Mocking my weakness. A monument to my failure,to avenge the lives of nine teenagers. My inability to protect my family. And then the weight is too much.

As if a thousand hand take hold of me I’m dragged to the ground and i give up. The pleading voices whisper promise of oblivion. The dirt clings to me and numbs me to the bone. I close my eyes and let it smother me.

Alexi gasped in air as the recurring nightmare fades into obscurity. He pulled himself from the familiar comfort of the cheap bed sheets that had been ruined by cold sweat. He reached for the bedside table which held two options for him. The mobile phone had Matron’s number. He still had so many questions and she could help. But he went for the second option, two pain pills washed down with a fifth of vodka. Dragged himself back to bed and try and ignore the oncoming oblivion.


[identity profile] nadriel.livejournal.com
A scruffy, dirty man, wearing layers of unidentified clothing, stood at the corner of the road.

But no-one noticed him. There were none with the eyes to see.

He ignored the minor spirits who (oh so carefully nowadays) clamoured for his attention. With his eyes able to see both worlds, he was well used to their presence, and chose to dismiss it.

What he focused on was the people he knew. He had spent the last couple of decades here on the streets of London. He had been known to the street gangs, the others who made the streets their home, for whatever reason.

But he saw no recognition in their eyes now. And why should they recognise him? He had removed himself from their world, as only one of the mightiest of the Wise (and such a misnomer that often was) could.

He would never forget what they had taught him of the importance of the individual, but now his eyes were turned to truths that they could not begin to comprehend.

This was their legacy too, and one day they would be able to claim it. But in order for him to enable this, he must first renounce them all. His life had always been about sacrifice, and he recognised that once again, sacrifice was called for. He knew now what he had to do.

He had cared for this city- he had bound his very soul to it. But now it was time for someone else.

And so he walked the streets as a stranger, where he had once been a familiar fixture. And as he walked, he said goodbye.

He did not know what would happen, or if he would even succeed. But he knew that if he did return, he could never again care about one single city as he had these last decades.

It felt like cutting part of himself off. But he did it anyway.

And one day he hoped he would see them again in the realms beyond, reborn in their birthright, following the path he had taken.

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