Thursday, August 15, 2013

Deadened Emotions - The Ghosts of Wings

Note: This segment of the story is on the same night, and in the same place as, but after, Heartsring Harper. While reading one is not necessary for the other, it may help you make sense of things.

All I wanted to do tonight was get a drink someplace I could go without having to watch my back or be bothered by ghosts. Night's Kiss seemed like a perfect place for both, given it's a club, has no tolerance whatsoever for fights - and the muscle to back it up -, and is well-warded (and I should know, seeing as I helped set the protections up) against ghosts, except in the levels that cater to them.

What I wasn't counting on was the normal entertainment, a girl known as Heartstring, being off, as I'd been looking forward to seeing her play (a weird mix of music and performance art, given that she plays her own body and has a knack for showmanship), even if that wasn't the main point. But such is life, and the band who was on instead was pretty good too...

Nor was I counting on some guy with a mane - Night's Kiss also has something set up that lets you see exactly what everyone is, despite the fact that most of us normally don't look any different, or at least not different in a way that can be pinpointed, to those who aren't the same 'type', though there are exceptions - coming up and asking for my story. 

But what the hell. Why not? Not like it's hard to talk about how you got back; our little groups do do that all the time, inside themselves. Even people who don't know a thing about each other share notes on the web, trying to figure out how people end up with the... spirits... they do. And maybe a fresh pair of eyes could lend some insight... It's not like I was breaking any rules or anything. I mean, sure, secrecy's a big deal, but he wasn't exactly a mortal himself, and it's not like how you come back is top-secret information...

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Introduction to the City of Bells

Look on the city now, newcomer. See the gilded towers of Godtown shining in the light of the moons, glowing with faesparks and ghostlight, purple and green. Or freezing into ash and gleaming shards of ice as the mage-lords duel with baelfire, for that's a fine sight too, watching men turned to silvered statues limned with white flames.

 Or if such things are not to your taste, turn your gaze to Nightgrove. Look through the streets and buildings as the Bell of Shadows tolls, watch the world twist into new forms, the night coming alive to prey on life, or take it as a counterpart. Pretty, isn't it, the way that the shadows rise like mist?

That's the core of this place, really. Finding the beauty in the pain and blood, if there is any. Much like alchemy, really. Purifying muck to get something better from it, and putting strange parts together to make wonders. Though in this case, as often the good ends up being the muck itself, with a change of perspective... At least, it is for me. Others have said far different things.

 But in any case, whatever it is to you, welcome to the City of Bells.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Flash Fearsday - Spirited Away

A post for Flash Fearsday, after a rather long absence. The whole thing is now being handled on Nine Worlds, Ten Thousand Things, after I dropped it for entirely too long.


A sharp feeling, pain in my neck. But with it, a kind of... Lethargy. Apathy. At least until I smell the blood, but by then it's a bit late.


The scent is oddly invigorating, letting me feel my blood flowing to the bite. But as I push the woman back, my sight darkens, and I fall...

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Ghosts in the Machine

Mortal. That is what I was, once. A human, even. Not even a mage, or one of the Tla'mxi, the Wolfrunners who have lived in the forests here since before the City began. My name was Vana, and, when the Keserathi invaded, I volunteered to be a soldier.

Strong as the City of Bells is, they had too many. They were a nation, and we were, while massive, for what we are, still nowhere near as large as they. And, too, they had mages at least as strong as ours, even a few using Hedgemagic, from what I have learned since, and that is something even the elves, corrupted fae as they are, have trouble controlling or countering.

So we adapted. That is not a thing most think of when listing our capabilities in war, but it is one of our strengths, just as our magic is, for those who cannot adapt in this place, melting pot and ever-changing, even the streets bearing no guarantee they will be the same from hour to hour, as it is, end up dead, or subsumed by those stronger and more flexible than they.

Mages and artificers - sometimes one and the same, as the two professions require similar skills and mindsets - worked together to craft huge constructs, armed with the best weaponry their imaginations and wills could produce - and the imagination of those in this place is not to be underestimated.

I was fighting beside one of those, when I died. But as I fell, we were caught in a burst of wild magic, and I returned as a ghost, possessing a cloud of steam that had escaped from a rent in the construct, though its freedom was short-lived, as I moved back inside, and took control of it, for my new body could manipulate its limbs with but a thought...

After the war, I set to work learning to construct such bodies, and, eventually, made one for myself, hence why I look as human as I do, rather than being a thing designed solely for war - though I can defend myself, if I must, for everything here has to, often enough. It is simply that my weapons are less obvious, being inside my body until required, rather than out in the open for all to see like that sword on your hip.