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 Old Darkest story written for another place (Kinda Lengthy)

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darkestflame
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Posts : 262
Join date : 2010-01-16
Age : 25
Location : Waiting for the day.

PostSubject: Old Darkest story written for another place (Kinda Lengthy)   Fri Feb 04, 2011 11:49 am

It was dark, and damp. The sickly sweet smell of rotting hay and mold hung heavy in the air, like incense at an alter, it smothered most of the other scents. It was cold, In the darkness. The stone was freezing. Here and there, you could see a faint plume of breath through the darkness. These cells were rarely used, and only the worst prisoners were shuffled here to rot. Most froze to death before they even reached their Sentencing. Traitors in the army of darkness were not treated well. Those who resisted a Telepaths intrusion into their mind, even worse. Third cell from the back, near the left corner, one prisoner sat on a rotting wooden. All that was left of a bench, or bed, from ages ago. Broad shouldered and rangy, with an angled face and the gaunt features of a plague victim, he didn’t stand out from the other prisoners much. His head was bald. The hair had been roughly cut off his head with a knife, while he had been restrained. Rough patches of stubble irritated patches of burnt flesh that mottled his head like large liver spots. He would scar where patches of skin had been scraped completely off. Once hard muscle had been softened by months of captivity in the small cell, and eyes that had once been bright and gleaming were almost feral now. Old scars from where he had tried to escape the thick, black iron manacles were common around his ankles and wrists. One large scar in particular on the left wrist, stood out. It was there that he had tried to escape his sentence permanently. It was there, where he learned just how deep his ‘debt’ to the forces of darkness was. Wearing nothing but a worn pair of leather breeches, he rotted alive, unable to die. Unable to escape. A single white plume escaped his lips as he settled more comfortably to wait.

***

“Surely this many guards aren’t necessary for one prisoner?” The young scribe asked.
“Do you know the prisoners crime?” Came the reply from a grizzled man at the rear.
“N-no, I haven’t read it yet…I-“ The man cut him off with a harsh laugh.
“He killed five Reavers, and maimed a captain before the rest of his squad could overpower him.”
The young man’s light blue eyes got wide.
“He injured a Captain?!”
The older man sighed and reached for a cigar, then stopped himself. He was supposed to have quit a month ago.
“Yeah. Damn near killed him.”
The scribe shuddered and looked at the guards around him. Most looked ahead unseeing, nothing but soulless husks in the service of darkness. A few were like the veteran near the rear. Fifteen men in all. Seven living. Eight dead.
“S-shouldn’t we have a priest to ward against magic?” The kid stuttered.
That brought another laugh out of the veteran. He put the cigar to his lips and lit up, and through a plume of smoke said.
“That’s the best part. He doesn’t have any magic.”

***

The smell reached him first. Smoke. Someone was using one of those narcotic sticks. Then, the sound of a large group approaching. He stirred a little, limbs creaking in both protest and disuse. His grin was wicked, revealing his sharp teeth. They were coming. Finally coming.
A large group of armored men entered the area, and some prisoners began to shriek and wail at the intrusion of light and sound in their place of darkness. One of the intruders stood apart. Short and disturbed at the prisoners reactions, he just stood there for a moment before a gruff hand pushed him towards the cell. At first, the light from a torch hurt his eyes, but as he adjusted, he smiled. They had brought an initiate into the priesthood of the void with them. Red rimmed black robes and a scroll at hand, no weapon. He was probably going to be a healer, someday. The bright eyed youth stood before him and raised a scroll.
“D-darkest?” the youth stuttered.
Darkest laughed and smiled at the youth, some light re-entering his eyes.
“Present and accounted for.” His voice was harsh and gravelly from disuse. Once, it had been persuasive and disarming. He frowned at this fact.
“Y-you have knowledge of the crime you were sentenced for?”
Darkest growled and stood up, heavy manacles dragging at his limbs.
“I don’t get a public trial?”
“I-I-no.”
“I committed no crime. I didn’t even try and stop them when they marched on the town. Do you know, what their crime was?”
“I-um-“ Darkest silenced him with a fist, pounding on the iron bars.
“That village, was my home. They promised to bring order to it, order under the darkness. They burned it. Then, they took the survivors and…” Tears welled up in Darkests eyes.
“They burned them alive. The men. The women…my wife…He took her. She was screaming. They watched, Those bastards just watched!” Darkest was screaming at the guards now.
“I-…I tried to save her. Tried telling him who she was, but he didn’t listen…none of them listened…one of them held me away…I killed him with my dagger…right through the seam in the chestplate…two more died…I slit their throat before they could react or put their helmets back on…” Darkest laughed. “Two daggers you see, my specialty, coated in poisons of my own making…I was an alchemist once. I made poisons and antidotes…Black death was on the dagger in my left…I sliced the other one with it, across the forehead..he died screaming, trying to rip the flesh off his forehead as the flesh rotted around the cut, almost instantly…” The guards listened, some feeling pity, others anger, most often, they tried to shut him out. The youth however, was transfixed.
“The last had an axe. He charged. I tripped him…bruised my ankle…Put both daggers through him…one through the mail at his hip, one through the back of his neck…he was waiting for me…Fire eye. She was crying, sobbing. He had broken her wrists and ankles…” Tears fell faster. “I stabbed him and he laughed. Laughed! The rumors are true…poison didn’t work…I got desperate, slashed him, and watched as the wounds healed. He sent me flying back. I could see the fire in his hand as he looked at me with contempt…I jumped at him. The fire lit on the poisoned blade. My hair was on fire. I had long, white hair once…it acted as a torch. I slammed into him, knocked him down, and I kept stabbing, and stabbing…The fire hurt him.” Darkest grinned wildly. “The wounds didn’t heal. I did it, again and again, until they pulled me off…” he trailed off and it was silent. Not even the prisoners were wailing. The scribe was looking at him with a mix of pity and hatred.
“Trethar solunus, former head scout for the Army of the Void, Inducted into the ritual and named Darkest by the Void itself, you have been sentenced to exile. The woman you were with has been.” The intern choked up and then spat the word. “Inducted into the service of the void. You have been pronounced dead and your wealth appropriated by the Army of Darkness.” A tear ran down the scribes cheek as he pulled his hood back, obscuring his face.
“I’m sorry.” Darkest didn’t hear him. He couldn’t breathe.
“Please…erase my memory. Let me retain the knowledge of my life, of my alchemy and scouting, but not of this…please, not this.” The words were forced out of his lips. Tears ran freely down his cheeks, scalding hot.
The young man nodded and motioned the guards forward. They unlocked the cell, the youth stood forward, reached a hand out, and the world went black.

***
“That was horrible.” The young man said as they carried Darkests limp form away.
“Yeah…Turn a blind eye to it lad, it will only eat you up, trying to do the right thing in a world of evil. You’ll end up like him.” The youth nodded, and as they left, the prisoners were left in the comfortable darkness once more.

Darkest woke with a large bump on his head and what felt like the worst hangover of his life. He groaned and sat up, taking stock of himself. He was in what looked like an inn, one with a view. His hands went to his belt almost instantly and he found nothing but a pouch with very little coin. Judging by the size of his headache, he had been drinking. He smiled and looked over to find nothing but empty bed space. He didn't know why, but he had a pang of disappointment. Stretching, he got up and took stock of the room. Plain, one window, second story. Some unassuming charcoal black garments were laid out next to him, so he put those on and stood up. For some reason, he couldn't remember anything...at all. Fighting panic, he went downstairs to a quiet common room.

"Innkeeper?" He asked tentatively.

A large man with a grim expression looked up.

"Master Darkest, I see you have awakened well. You're accounts are paid up until the month, including food, it would be kind of you to join us, yes?"

He shook his head, questions flooding his mind.

"Where-"

"The wonderful Vedradi Inn of Tarr, of course, you said your business was your own, and instructed me to give you this upon awakening." The innkeeper said in a rush. He tried to push a letter into Darkest's hands, but Darkest waved him off and stumbled outside to greet a mid-size city. people walked about in a hushed manner, and ignored him for the most part. The bright cheerful light of the sun stabbed into his corneas and he hissed in displeasure, seeking the darkness of an alleyway while his eyes adjusted. he stumbled along, trying to shake off the lethargy he suddenly felt.

"We got us another one." A man in a thick, rough brown cloak yelled. Darkest blinked at the man, wondering why he was cloaked on such a sunny day. When a particularly large and viscous looking blade was shoved under his nose, bare centimeters from his face.

"See this boy? It's got a twin too." He patted another knife at his belt.
"Thieves teeth, you know what they are? Short blades son, with bottom half serrated and the quillion," The man moved the blade up to eye level, revealing what looked like a solid basket hilt guard, studded with short spikes, "Is studded. One punch from this and you'll be bleeding from more holes than your mother." He spat on the ground.
"Now, unless you want to-" Darkest didn't know why he did it, or how he knew to, but he stepped forward, past the nasty looking blade and headbutted the mugger in the face hard enough to make him spit teeth. While he was dazed, He gripped the man and fell forward, using the momentum to spin him around and slam his head into the ground with a sickening crack. The dazed man dropped the viscous knife and it was in Darkests hand within the blink of an eye, and he had rolled on top of his would-be attacker and slit his throat without thinking. He stared down at the corpse in horror, his lethargy forgotten. He stared down at his hands, which now held both of the daggers. Thieves teeth, the man had said. Viscous weapons, meant to make a person bleed and die. He felt sick.

“HEY!”
The shout turned darkest around to find a giant of a man barreling down on him, a cleaver in hand.
“YOUSONOFABITCH!” The thug roared. Darkest said nothing, just stood in the mans path as he came on, swinging the blade. Just before the man reached him, darkest went down on one knee, and thrust forward, holding the blades horizontally. The man came on, knocking darkest back, but as he did so, the blades were at his abdomen. Pushing and pulling back, the serrated edges on the shortswords opened the man like ripe fruit, and the sharp edges finished the job. He gave a slight gurgle as his insides spilled out on top of darkest, drenching him in blood and other wastes. He stood there, watching, as darkest did sick up, and his insides hung in the air. He gaped stupidly.

“Those are Pehdross blades…” He said before collapsing on top of his insides, crushing them and spilling more waste into the street. Darkest finished retching and stood there, with dry heaves. A loud thwack sounded and more blood splattered his face. He stared at a crossbow bolt just an inch to his right, stuck in the big mans flesh. Someone up on a roof cursed and darkest ran back into the main street, and into the Inn.
“Ah, master Darkest, I see you are becoming well acquainted with our lovely city.” The innkeeper said, smiling brightly.

“Welcome to Tarr, city of thieves, last free city in the world. I shall have a bath drawn for you, yes?”

“….Okay.” Darkest relented and gave in to the insanity. The inside of his head pounded like the beat of War drums and his heart beat out a staccato rhythm. He still felt sick, but it was just a knot deep in his stomach, something he had learned to get used to. It was getting worse, the disorientation after waking. He shook his head and ran his hand over his face, wiping some of the cloying blood off. He looked at his hand in disgust and took back off up the stairs. He ran his hand alongside the wall, just feeling the grain of the wood, the purity in it, and oddly enough, it eased his tension a little. The floor creaked dreadfully, and the threadbare rug covering the stairs looked like Darkest felt. Stained. Worn. Used beyond belief. He sighed, trying to shake out of his melancholy.

He stripped to his breechcloth carefully once he got upstairs, wincing as the rough shirt caught in his hair and pulled it only slightly. Tears formed in his eyes and he cursed his weakness as he pulled out a tiny polished disk. He slid one hand across the smooth, cold surface, then tilted it so he could look up at his scalp. Already covered in blood, what little stubble he had managed to grow attempted to mat to his head. Carefully, darkest ran his hand over it, wincing again. Yeah, there was fresh blood coming from a scab. The healers he had visited had told him that they could heal it, but his hair would be a stark white from then on. He had neglected the expensive magical treatment for a more mundane method. Sit and wait, wash and pray. He sighed and looked out the window.
Thatched and tiled rooftops mingled in a patchwork pattern for a good league before they met a wall as tall and daunting as a fortress. Thick and rough, plenty of handholds, it had taken darkest an entire night to climb, and he had used the last of his rope getting down before the morning sun caught him. The night had been crisp and clear, and it seemed the day was the exact opposite. White clouds obscured much of the sky, and the wall obscured the sun’s setting, casting his room in shadow, even though it was at the second story. He frowned at that last detail, wondering how long he had been here, just as the innkeeper burst in with two helpers. A bulky mute and a lanky youth, the latter struggling with his end of a large tub filled with steaming water.

“I am most sorry for the wait, Bark here, he is not so bright, and before Frenn or I could stop him, he had brought in the water for your bath. Hot water is precious, yes? Takes much time to heat and eats wood. So we bring this to you full.” The innkeeper said, flashing a bright smile that revealed a gold tooth set in his cherubic face.

“Everything is to your liking, yes?” He inquired as the men practically dropped the tub on the floor. Darkest took another look at the room he had rented out. The “Best in the house” Was spacey, and bare, a single nightstand and king sized bed shared the room with a small wardrobe that looked older than the dirt on the road just outside. Almost practical, the clean and large bed was the only real comfort.

“It’s fine, thank you.” The Innkeeper nodded and pushed the boy towards Darkests bloody clothing.

“We have these waiting for you when you are done with your washing, Frenn will bring you to them, yes?” Darkest frowned at that last statement, trying to decide if the syntax was purposeful or the odd mans accent.

“Alright.”

The Innkeeper smiled again and motioned for everyone to leave, the youth carrying the bloodsoaked clothing in a comical fashion, trying to touch them as little as possible.

“Ah, before I forget.”

The innkeeper stopped and placed a letter on the bed, then scurried out. Darkest frowned at his bloody countenance then shook his head. Grabbing one of his new blades, he cut off a section of bedding and made a rag. He wiped himself off slowly and thoroughly, ringing the rag out the window. He winced when he cleaned off his head. He watched the dirty water fall into the alley below and started for a second when he recognized a puddle of blood.
‘Huh, they clean up fast here.’ He thought to himself, dropping the rag to the ground. He settled into the now lukewarm bath and enjoyed himself, closing his eyes.

A loud banging sounded from the door and Darkest started awake. He jumped out of the now freezing water and dried off with a corner of the bedding and quickly slipped on his breechcloth. Upon opening the door he found Frenn there, an anxious look to his face. The youth quickly mumbled an apology and told him that he had to take him to his clothes. Darkest frowned, but slipped silently out the door and began to follow the youth. The floor creaked under his feet as they went down the stairs, yet Frenn’s barely made a sound. Darkest was about to ask him how he did that when the fire, low in the inns hearth glinted off steel at the boys thigh. Bolts. Crossbow bolts. Strapped to his leg with leather. And there was one missing. Darkest felt a chill that had nothing to do with the cold water he had been soaking in.
‘So, that’s the game.’ Darkest thought, angrily. Rage banished the cold from within as he wondered at how many innocents came here to die. City of thieves. Damned right. He was about to confront the sandy haired youth when something else glinted in the light. A knife. In the boys sleeve. Just the tip was showing, but it was more than enough to set Darkest on edge. Fear had pierced the warm embrace of his rage, but the anger was back again, just colder. Tempered now. The boy was headed for a dark doorway towards what Darkest guessed to be the kitchen. Before the kid slipped into the shadows Darkest’s arm snaked around his head and clamped over his mouth. The youth panicked, and the arm with the knife came up, only to be held in a vice-like grip.

“Murderer.”

Darkest’s voice was soft and steady, right by the youth’s ear. Frenn tried to struggle now, to no avail. Desperation lent him strength, and he began to thrash. Darkest held him tightly, keeping most of the noise down to a shuffle. He had to finish this soon.

“I’ll see you in hell.” He said vehemently this time, his anger flaring into his voice, Making the smooth whisper hoarse like sandpaper.

Darkest Began turning Frenn’s head with the same arm holding his mouth shut. The boys neck began popping, and he panicked, trying to grip Darkest arm with both hands, knife forgotten as he realized what Darkest was attempting. The angry man was happy to oblige. The other hand came around and gripped the youths now sweaty forehead, and he twisty mightily. There was a sick cracking noise and for a second, Darkest looked into the boys eyes. Brown, deep brown, and frightened. There were tearstains down his cheeks. He had been crying. Darkest let the corpse down gently, taking a minute to gather his wits. He was breathing heavily, more from anger than exertion though. He looked around for witnesses, but it seemed that the Inn was empty, and the hour late. Putting the knife back into the sleeve, Darkest carried the boy upstairs, then heaved. The crash Frenn made going down the stairs was enough to make Darkest wince as he silently rushed back into his room and slipped into the cold bath after locking the door quietly. He shivered again, and the knot reappeared in his stomach, making his head ache sickly again. He closed his eyes and settled back to wait. It wouldn’t be long, he thought, before the pounding on the door matched that in his head.

***
"Daelo..." A female voice, soft and weak, sounded in the darkness.

"Hmm?" Came the reply. The woman coughed weakly.

"Daelo, he's coming..." Daelo sighed.

"You have been saying that the past four years, come now, Do you really believe he will come? For you?" Rustling permeated the dark as Daelos set his glass of wine down with a sigh, and got up from a large furnished chair. He moved through the dark, to where she lay. A brocaded coat ensconcing a thin, almost delicate wrist reached out and began petting her long, soft auburn hair. The woman shuddered.

"Tell me, why would he come for you now, Mon triste ange? What have you seen?" She whimpered, and tried to move away, not answering. Daelos growled and wrapped his hand in her hair, yanking her closer to him. Even in the dim chamber, she could see his features, delicate and timeless, contort with rage into something monstrous.

"TELL ME!" He half shouted, half growled. She began to cry.

"T-the spell cycle is b-b-broken. Fire will panick, a-and be destroyed. He is coming." She sobbed out.

"Hush...Shhh...Shhh...It's okay now...he doesn't know of us..." He petted her cheek with his other hand, and wiped her tears away with his thumb.

"Hush, my darling, Mon fluer...hush..." Daelos's deep, lavender eyes trailed over her white dress, turned blue from the moonlight coming in from a high window, to her re-broken ankles and smooth, pale white skin, so soft...her, luscious eyelashes held a tear and her beautiful emerald eyes stared sightlessly in the near dark. His hand went behind her long, lush hair and he pulled her forward, capturing her full, soft lips with his. She shuddered, but did not fight. Daelos smiled. She had learned well. he could taste her tears upon his tongue, as she started crying again.

"Mmm.." he deepened the kiss, crushing her to him painfully. he could taste her fear and revulsion, along with the despair that made her so sweet, and it heightened the hunger within him. He trailed kisses along her jawline, savoring the sweet taste of her skin.

"Never forget, my pet..." He said in a husky tone.

"You are mine, mine, mine, mine...." He punctuated each mine with a hard kiss, moving towards her throat. She stared sightlessly at the ceiling, her tears falling upon Daelos's long, curly black hair as he nuzzled her throat, his tongue tracing along a bruise that ended in two almost circular scars, right above her veins.

"Mine." He whispered, his eyes glinting in the darkness as he bit into her flesh. She cried out in agony as the fangs entered her neck and then just whimpered as Lord Daelos, master of the Demon Plains, ambassador to the Empire of the Void, fed from her veins. She passed out a few seconds later, and he released her from his deadly embrace.

"Ahh..." he said with satisfaction, his hunger quenched, he kissed her unmoving form deeply. Yes. She was his now. And nobody would take her away.

Darkest groaned, shifting in his seat and moving his sore and aching muscles. The new shirt he wore rustled and the not quite finery scratched his skin. He stared at a mug before him, filled with amber liquid, still debating whether or not to drown himself in it. He ignored the crowd behind him, concentrating on the mug with vigor. Tarr’s ale was bitter and salty, more akin to something you’d find in a dockside tavern than the lighter ales usually served in a landlocked tavern. Four days. That was how long it had been since he'd woken up here, and he still had no clue why he was here, where here was, or just what he was doing here. He closed his eyes and tried to remember, he had a nagging sense of urgency, like he was here for something important. He sighed, the half formed feelings vanishing as he gave up, and reached for the mug. He winced as he quaffed the brew, his throat still sore from that confrontation three days ago.

"I told you, I was asleep in the damn tub!" He had exclaimed angrily.

"I am not thinking this is so. How else could he have died, eh?"

Darkest growled. "Oh, I don't know, perhaps he FELL DOWN THE FRIGGIN STAIRS AND BROKE HIS NECK?!" The innkeeper sighed, and made a waving motion with his hand. Bark, unseen, had crept up behind Darkest while he was arguing with the innkeeper, and now put a massive hand around his throat. Darkest began choking and the innkeeper moved up in front of him.

"I can't prove it was you. He was a stupid boy, after all, and accidents do happen." All trace of the faux accent had disappeared, and the words were said in a monotone. Darkest tried to gasp an answer, but the giant hand around his throat prevented that.

"However," The Innkeeper said as he slipped on a pair of brass knuckles. “If it was you, I can't just let you go away unpunished, can I?" Darkest’s anger flared, and he struggled, punches falling just short of that cherubic face. The innkeeper waited until Darkest had gone red in the face, and was no longer struggling so hard before he stepped in and punched him in the ribs. Spots swam in Darkest’s eyes, and his ribs ache. Another punch, damn near close to the second, and there was a crack, and there was a bright, flaring pain. The pressure on his throat ceased, and the floor had rushed up to meet him.

He had woken up in an alleyway, different from Inn's. Covered in bruises and only that, with the blades he had kept and that letter crammed into his mouth. Looking back on that, he smiled wryly at the Innkeepers sense of humor. Naked with nothing but his blades. Weak from the physical abuse he had endured. Dumped in an alley. That first day had been hell, just lying there in agony, trying to breath without passing out. He failed at that, and vaguely remembered the agony of being picked up and moved.

"Hey there cutie." A smallish woman, with flaming auburn hair and slight curves somehow managed to slip into his lap, separating him from both drink and memories. Darkest grunted in reply, ignoring his "rescuer" and reaching for the mug. She leaned forward, pressing both hands into his still sore chest, and darkest hissed in pain. She practically breathed the next words into his ear.

"I did not rescue you so you could drink all day. Get to work." Then, so startlingly fast, she was gone, vanishing off his lap and into the crowd. Darkest grumbled and stood up, trying not to wince at the pain in his chest. She had had him healed just enough to live. Picking up his drink, he drained it in three swallows, and walked up to the taverns bouncer. The man watched Darkest’s approach in silence, keeping his large arms crossed. Twice as wide as darkest, and just as tall, the man was huge, and burly.
'Gods, I should have had another drink.' he thought to himself.

"Ey, you." Darkest said loudly, slurring his speech. "You think is okay to touch my daughter?" Darkest swayed slightly, giving the perfect illusion of a drunken idiot. A few people in the tavern were watching, most however, ignoring the performance. One kept to himself in Tarr, if he wanted to live.

"You're drunk." The big man rumbled, getting to his feet, preparing to throw darkest out.

"Fuggin Pig, you're gonna get yours, teach you never to...touch my women." Darkest raised a wobbly hand and hit the man in the chest. There was laughter, a lot of laughter, actually, from the people watching. he might as well have hit a brick wall for all that was done. The big man sighed, and picked darkest bodily up under one arm. And Darkest snarled, turning over quickly, his loose clothing allowing him to twist, and slammed the mugs bottom against the big man’s temple. He howled, loosening his grip bor a second, and let darkest go, where he promptly ran to the other end of the tavern.

"You think your soooooo.....tough? Immm....gonna kick your hairy ass." He exclaimed loudly as he climbed up on a groups table, wobbling, drawing yet more eyes over to him. The man glared at darkest. Blood trickled down the side of his head as he stalked forward, ready to crush the annoying pest before him. The people below darkest all scrambled away, and it seemed the whole bar was watching as the big man Charged forward. Darkest jumped awkwardly off the table and did a belly flop onto the dicing table next to it, scattering coins everywhere. the men yelled, and darkest rolled away, avoiding there grabbing hands, fists, and even one knife to fall on the floor and run out the door. A few chased him, but he was no longer stumbling. Down an alley, through a hole in the wall, and up a ladder to a rooftop he ran, chest on fire the entire way. He dropped, exhausted, to the rooftop, throat burning and tears in his eyes as the men ran past below.

"Getting lazy are we? Are you going to make me regret saving you?" Her brown eyes filled his vision and he coughed, dropping the handfuls of coin he had gathered. Mostly copper, a few silver, and even one gold piece. She cooed as she picked up the gold piece, her eyes twinkling. She laughed and gathered up most of the coin in a pouch, throwing a few silver over to Darkest.

"Now you can afford to get healed properly, and we can get you something more...fitting." She eyed Darkest openly, and laughed when he scowled at her.
"Don't be such a sour puss, I did save you after all, rather than sell you to slavers." She put her arms around him and looked up into his eyes before Darkest had even registered her moving. "You don't hate me, do you?" She pouted and Darkest shrugged her off.

"I'm grateful for what you did for me Merlie. But I'm the only one taking the risks here." She tsked and laid her head against Darkests's chest and he was suddenly uncomfortably aware of her closeness to him, and the feel of her against him.

"I'm also taking risks..." She smiled as she showed him the pouches she had lifted off the patrons watching the spectacle. "Mine just aren't as....big." She hugged him tightly. Then, she was away, her hips swaying in a manner that left little to the imagination. "i'll see you tonight." She promised with a wink before vanishing over the edge of the roof, climbing down with catlike grace and speed. Darkest watched the little woman go. Merlie was using him, she had said as much herself, and he was sure she was using others...but still. He couldn't help but be a little attracted to her. Not only was she the first person in the city who hadn't tried to kill him outright, but she was lithe, graceful, and moved with such speed... not to mention the knowing way about her that lifted the hair on the back of his neck. She was trouble, and he was beholden to her.

'For a little while at least.' Darkest thought as he sat down to read the letter again.

Tarr, Belltower at midnight, I have what you're looking for.

The innkeeper who gave him the letter said he had wanted it given to himself. He sighed and put the note away. Tarr didn't have a bell tower, it had a tavern known as the Belle, with a tower though. He would go there tonight. The shirt itched and he scratched, annoyed. At least Merlie had found him a pair of pants and boots that fit well enough. He sighed, stood up and stretched. There was enough time for mysteries later. Right now, he was going to visit a tailor, then a healer. and maybe later, he would get some friggin answers.
Dark thoughts and feeling swirled around his head as he sat, rejected, at a tavern stool. Darkest just held his drink, not feeling like drinking anymore, but not feeling like leaving either. He had a sour taste in his mouth.

'Because of all this business.' he thought dourly. His body ached from the abuse he had been giving it, and his scalp felt like it was on fire. 'And i still don't even know why I'm here....'

he sighed and slumped back. Ignoring the world for the most part until.

"Trethar? Trethar is that you?" Darkest felt a hand on his shoulder and whirled around, knife in hand. he was NOT in the mood for company right now.

"You've got the wrong person." He growled at the man. Two men, and a youth, he saw now. All in matching uniforms, black or dark blue, with crimson trim. He noticed the eyes of the entire tavern on them, and growled again, turning and sitting back down. ignoring the group for the most part.

"Still have a temper I see." the man said brightly sitting next to him. Darkest wanted to hit the man, and sighed at the futility of it all.

"Whats a point man doing all the way down here though? We just came off the Pirates coast and." There was a thud as Darkest's blade bit into the counter between the man and him.

"My name." he paused for dramatic effect. "Is Darkest. And I don't know any of you"

The soldier looked put off, disturbed, even a little sad. "Then the rumors...they're true." He offered no explanation, but didn't leave either.

"we're here to deliver a body, a young priest, he...couldn't take the empires training and fell. We're delivering him to his family." The man said somberly, as his friends sat down beside him. "That's the official story. It mentions nothing of the crime he committed. He showed mercy, to a prisoner." Darkest chuckled, and the man turned his head raising an eyebrow.

"Sounds like one hell of place." Darkest remarked as he quaffed down some of his drink, a viscous smirk on his face.

"It's Not!" The young man replied instantly. "Yeah, it's strict, but the Empire provides us with protection, and food, and water, they guarantee our livelihood."

"Protection from what?" Darkest's tone was flat as he asked that question.

"From...from the demons, and the foreigners." The youth said quietly, not so sure of himself now.

"You're in a foreign land now. Nobodies knifed you yet." Darkest replied.

"That's because of the empire protection..." The man mumbled back.

"It sounds like chains to me." Darkest took a gulp of air, smacked his lips, then started again.

"Chains rule our life. You can't help that. What you can do is choose where and what you're bound to." He didn't know where those words came from, but he said them with conviction. The youth chuckled.

"I met a man who said those word's once, back when I first joined the Void's Army. His name, was Trethar Solunus." The youth watched Darkest's face intently, like he was searching for something.

"He was a scout, and a damn good one. Stealthy bastard, he wasn't too shabby with his blades either. He saved my life. A hellcat had snuck up on our troop while we were going out for survival on the Ghostwind plains, and area right next to the Demons plains. It's a nasty area, the air is filled with a dust that will turn your hair white permanently if not washed out soon. Hellcats are big, white beasts that stalk the plains. Everything there is bleached white by the dust, the animal included. As big as a lion and shaped like a saber tooth. nasty things, made even worse by the way they blend in with the tall grass and constant wind. We didn't even see it until it roared and leapt at me. Then, he was there, Long white hair flying out behind him he crashed into it mid leap! Stabbing as slashing as wildly as the cat, it was awe inspiring, and frightening. He got cut up pretty bad, along his arms. Healer fixed that when he woke up. I asked him why he did it, and he said his chains bound him to. He gave me the same speech you did, then said he was only here to protect his beloved, and that I shouldn't feel special." The young man trailed off then, staring at the counter top.

Darkest grunted.

"Pretty words don't mean much. That is how it is, now, if you'd excuse me." he picked up his glass and left, flinging a silver piece at the wench who started squawking something about the glass. As he stepped out into the just cooling night air, he breathed deeply, noticing a cart off to the side with a heavy cloth covering it. Morbid curiosity overtook him when he noticed boots sticking out the end. The cloth fell off with a rustle as he tugged it, and inside was a youth, younger than the soldier inside. Ice blue eyes stared up at Darkest, and his blonde hair shifted a bit in the breeze. Darkests stared at the face, and he felt like he should know this man. He sighed, shook his head, and closed the young mans eyes before pulling the cloth back over the body, and vanishing into the night.

The three watched him as he blended into the shadows perfectly, and silently.

"There goes a living legend. The only man left to stand up to Fire-Eye and live." The man who had sat next to the youth said.
The youth shook his head.

"No. There goes a ghost. A soul damned to walk the earth, without knowing why." the other two looked at the kids eyes, then at each other. One frowned the other shrugged. Such, was the price of failure.

Friggin' taverns. Darkest thought as he slogged through a muddy backroad, the mud and filth squelching under his boots. Friggin' thieves. Friggin' guards. He slipped on something he'd rather not examine too closely and caught himself. Friggin' Tarr. Why had he even come to this place? Three weeks ago, he had been new to this muddy backwater town. Three weeks ago, he had thought his stay would be boring and uneventful, full of acting and running away from guards and muscle bound Neanderthals. Boy was he wrong. As it turned out, Merlie did have bigger plans for Darkest, and she was using him. She had a boss. A smuggler. A smuggler who didn't take too kindly to finding his 'Girl' skimming a little off the side, and building her own power base. It had been a bloody week so far, and as far as Darkest knew, just he, Merlie, and some hired knuckleheads were all that was left of Merlie's crew. Friggin' woman. Friggin' life. he grumbled some more. in his head of course, that damn woman had hearing like a bloody hawk...Darkest grinned grimly. Just his luck that she would find "a better use for talents of his sort." He came to a stop outside the back entrance of a bakery just as rain began sprinkling down again. Within a half hour, it would be pouring, an opaque sheet of water that would get caught inside Tarr's impressive walls. He sighed. Just another day in friggin' paradise.

* * *

Limn took a deep breath, and ignored the first sprinkling of rain pattering down upon his steady hand. Another breath, and he looked down the sight once more, taking into account the slight breeze that had just picked up, and adjusted accordingly. He had a knot in his stomach, as he always did when about to complete a job, a knot of excitement and anxiety.
Another deep breath, and he squinted out across the street, watching the tavern entrance, waiting for the target patiently.

"When's the bitch gonna show?" His partner suddenly exclaimed in his ear. Limn closed his eyes, and resisted the urge to turn the heavy crossbow and knock a hole the size of a fist right in his partners ratty face.

"She'll come out when she comes out Emile. Settle down, and just be patient." Came the veterans even reply. It was the same one he had given every time the gangly freak had asked.

"You always say that." Emile whined.
"I don't understand why I can't just go in there and knife the broad quick-like."

Limn sighed. "Could it be because Cesaro wants this done right? You know what he wants. I put a bolt through her, you run over to help, and if she's still wriggling you 'knife her quick-like'."

Emile grumbled some more, but pulled away from the edge of the roof, slipping and stumbling on the flat, slick stone. Limn spared a glance down. Already, a half inch of water had gathered. he frowned and checked his string. It seemed like the wax was holding just fine. He let out a deep breath and put his eye back to the crosshair. Movement! His pulse quickened, and he had to steady himself with another deep breath when he saw who was coming out the door. It was the woman. Merlie, and her cowled partner. Another deep breath as he adjusted for her walking speed and stood up from his cover, heavy crossbow at the ready and finger on the trigger, ready to let loose the lethal missile. Another deep breath, and something pushed him back, and pain blossomed throughout his chest, and his lungs filled with fiery pain. He looked, bewildered, as the cowled man pulled himself up over the edge of the bakery.

* * *

Darkest grunted quietly as he pushed his dagger into the assasins chest with one arm and pulled himself up over the edge with the other. His shoulders burned from the quick climb, and his fingertips were scraped so bad they bleeding. Friggin' bricks. He thought as he stepped past the dying man and drew his other shortblade. A gangly, ratty looking man had just turned around to see what the noise was about, and his eyes looked as if they would burst out of his head at any second. Still, he put his hand to the stiletto at his belt, and would have drawn it if Darkest's free hand hadn't punched his in the elbow hard enough to numb it. The blade half splashed, half clattered to the rooftop, fallen from nerveless fingers.

"Shoulda kept the knife near your dominant hand." Darkest muttered before grating the spiked hilt along Emile's face.

* * *

"Shoulda kept the knife near your dominant hand." Emile started to retort but was stopped as his face was torn open and shredded by the apparition before him. Instead of a witty reply, a shriek was torn from his throat, but not for long, as a follow up punch to the throat crushed his windpipe. He slumped over, struggling to breathe, blood and rain blinding him. He gasped and struggled as spots swam in his vision. He fell to his knees, and barely noticed the slash to the back of his neck that severed his spine and almost decapitated him.

* * *

Darkest sneered at the pitiful excuse of a murderer before him. He had just begun to wipe his blade on the corpse when a loud thwack sounded from behind him. he whirled around in time to see his first victim, the crossbowman, slouched upon the roof's lip, the crossbow on it, and pointed at the Tavern. Gurgling laughter erupted from the dying man as he wheezed his last breath and slid down the wall to curl up and die.

Panic. That was the first thing Darkest felt as he rushed over to the roofs edge. Relief and then anger, as the man pretending to be him fell over and didn't move. Darkest kicked the corpse in front of him and then put a hand to his throbbing temples, closing his eyes. His third thought as he began dragging the corpses through the water and over to the roof's edge facing the muddy backroad.

Merlie was going to kill him for that.

The rain continued outside, filling the world with sound.
He sat, one knee drawn up to his chest, ignoring the darkness that surrounded him.
Eyes closed, he saw the world.

* * *

"Pieter?" Pieter!" He walked up, soaking wet from the rain. The unmoving form blended in almost perfectly with the mud, the dark forms fusing together. Merlie was on her knees, crying into the unmoving mans chest. She was sobbing, almost in hysterics. Darkest watched, stunned, just behind her.

'I was wrong.' Was all he could think as he watched the woman he had misjudged cry over her lover.

* * *

He felt cold on the outside. Hot on the inside.
He knew the anger wouldn't help. That anger killed as sure as any blade.
But for a second, he raged, and in that rage, he felt like he could do more.
Shadows obscured his form.
But he had never been more defined.

* * *

"WHY COULDN'T YOU DO IT?" Her voice slammed into him like a wall of needles, bringing Darkest pain, and kick starting his frozen tongue. She hit him in the shoulder, unprepared, he was forced a step back.

"I-i'm sorry." Was all he could say.

"I TRUSTED YOU!!" A bolt of lightning illuminated her features, the shadows highlighting the pain in her eyes. A peal of thunder cut through her sobs. She slammed her fists into his chest. He barely felt it. She collapsed against him. He stepped away. Watched, as she slid into the mud on her hands and knees, where she sat, sobbing.

"Merlie, I-" He couldn't find the words. He felt her pain, her loss, as if it were himself, and his headache intensified. For ten straight minutes, she cried, silently, while he stood there, struggling with the weight of what he'd done. What he'd failed to do.

* * *
He barely felt the cold, except in his fingertips, raw, and bleeding.
The moon rose full over the formidable walls of Tarr, outlining his unmoving form.
He looked like a marble statue.
Cold.
Unfeeling.
Inside, he was burning.

* * *

She wiped her nose and stood up.
"Merlie?" He called out cautiously, softly, unsure of what to do or say.
Another flash of lightning.
He saw the light drain from her eyes.
Saw fire replace her will to live. She lunged at him, her snarl and shriek lost in the thunder.
Steel flashed in the rain.
He stood, wide eyed, at the blade just an inch away from his chest, held in both her hands.

* * *

Lightning flashed and thunder rolled. The moon was falling below the clouds, the momentary clear once again obscured by the angry weather and tall wall.
He could hear the guards coming.
He didn't care.
He shot a scornful glare at the well dressed man looking at him.
A glare, filled with contempt.
He was a murderer.
It was time he acted like one.

* * *

She made no sound when the dagger fell. They were alone, the two of them, with the rain.
He stared, horrified, bile scorching the back of his throat, as she fell over, her body sliding easily from his blade.
The rain pattered down, taking away the crimson stain on the weapon, bit by bit.
They found him, still standing there, holding the wicked knife, just staring at the blade.
He saw two beautiful faces, slain by his hand.
For a time, he was lost in his memories.
He barely noticed when they started to beat him unconscious.

* * *

The well dressed man smiled, it looked more like a sneer. The shadows hid his face, revealing only a pencil thin mustache, and thick lips. From a pocket within his wide sleeve, he produced a cigar. For some reason, the smell of that stick pissed Darkest off more than the fact that the man blew it at him.

"Well well. You have done me a great favor friend. Allow me to do you the same. You're free to go now, but that's not the favor I want to grant. You have been here three days?" Silence greeted his answer, giving no opening. He smoothly pressed on.

"I know you now, Trethar. Allow me, to tell you about yourself."

For a moment. He considered it. For a moment, he wanted to know why he was here. For a moment, he was weak. His laugh disturbed the man, as well as his quick movement at him. He took the mans cigar and puffed on it. Then, he breathed a single, smoke covered word into Cesaro's smooth face.

"No."

He would sink back into the Darkness of Tarr. Already, ideas were spinning in his head. He had it in him, he now knew. And he threw it all away. Already, plans for surviving were coming into play, and he laughed out loud at himself, causing this self made noble to cringe. Darkest's fist shattered the bastards jaw, breaking a knuckle in the process.

"That," He whispered deadly quiet.
"Was for her memory."
Which her, he didn't care. With Merlie's death,the part of him seeking to find some magic way out died. He would carve his way out of Tarr, somehow, some way, he was going to do this the only way he knew how. From the Darkness. Covered in blood.

A man outside was holding Darkest's blades, and soon, darkest was holding both his blades and the man's meager money pouch. Inside, was a note that jarred a memory, sparking his new hope, his dark desire for survival and escape. It was a note, and a recipe, on faded parchment. Signed under the words 'Black death' was the name Darkest. He grinned at the irony of it. In trying to make something of himself, he had lost himself. After breaking, he had gained the key that would ensure his survival.

Black death?

More like black joke.
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Heir_of_Eragon

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Posts : 155
Join date : 2010-01-17
Age : 23
Location : Condracore, Messier 106

PostSubject: Re: Old Darkest story written for another place (Kinda Lengthy)   Thu Apr 28, 2011 9:40 am

finally found the opportunity to read this. and i have this to say:

it's incredible.
absolutely incredible.
for a while i was thinking... what's the point of this story?
as it progressed, the meaning became clearer, and it ended fantastically!

Well done, darkest. cheers
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Old Darkest story written for another place (Kinda Lengthy)
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