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  1. ━ URSA MADEUM ━ PUBLIC NOTICE. ━━━━━━━━ $1000 REWARD ━━━━━━━━ WANTED DEAD. SANTANA ⬤ BACARDI (calls himself Santana the Longtail; Captain Santana of the Cat's Eye). Last sighted: Vanora. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ Description: Age━est. late twenties Height━5,9½ Weight━120 - 135 lbs. Build━slender Complexion━warm beige Hair━sandy blonde Eyes━deep blue Height━5,9½ Scars & Marks━downwards scar on lower eyelid; rope burn scar on neck; whip scars on back; stitch scars on both hands; leviathan tattoo on left pec; chain tattoos on both wrists Remarks: Walks like a swagger, heel-first Frequently disguised as a poet or musician, each go by the name Mr. Smith; can imitate several accents Reportedly known for causing misfortune; a dangerous fellow among superstitious sailors; allegedly immortal and a bad omen Ambidextrous; able to play guitar Immune to sirens; enjoys the company of women; however, is easily unamused Wears two lobe rings and one golden hoop; in possession of a skull-shaped necklace CAUTION: A skilled swordsman and a dirty liar with prior history of escape, Santana is being sought to hang for his crimes and should be considered armed, dangerous, and an escape risk. ♪ Give me your heart, make it real, or else forget about it. ♪
  2. ▄ It's a quick job, she said. It's a quick pay, she said. He stood at the edge, hands gripped on a wooden rail. His eyes were cast over the scenery—a pair of amber—staring into the vast open. The wind rustled his hair, the wind jangled his earring. Despite not actually taking a bath a few days prior, he came off as a handsome figure before the wide expanse of their tightly cramped journey. There was only one thing that he was stressed about. That woman never said anything about BOATS. THUNK. Raccoon dropped his head into the railing. He started groaning. According to his bandmates, Raccoon had the most hilarious case of sea-sickness ever known to man. How unfortunate that he, of all people, had to be stuck in a vehicular transport that involved rocking back and forth until you turned mentally insane. It was bad enough that this boat was crammed. Everyone was packed like sardines, and Raccoon, having a hard time as it is, tried to breathe in the cold wind, exhale the stars out of his eyes, avoid breathing in another guy's air; but everything came tumbling down when his breakfast starting tickling the back of his throat. He'd glued his eyes shut, but even then, it didn't stop them from spinning into a whirlpool of internalized hell. Point made, Raccoon was going to throw the fuck up. He started gagging, to which he responded by swallowing his bile, inevitably tasting it, and trying hard not to throw up again. He was hunched over the boat for so long, a sea bird landed right next to him and started pecking the back of his head. He groaned louder and started shooing it away with the remaining power he had to control his motor functions. His eyes were spinning in place. His brain was being sucked into an invisible black hole. His knees felt weak, arms are heavy, he's gonna vomit on his shirt already, "Who are you?" Raccoon turned and opened his eyes. "Who am mMIIGH-" He pulled himself over, and, EUGHHHH. EUGH- EUUGHHHH... As expected, he threw up his guts and temporarily got rid of a little bit of sea-sickness. The young man used a hand to wipe his mouth and fix his glasses. After a few seconds of trying to ground himself into the now, he somehow maintained a professional demeanor towards another human being and offered his clean hand to shake. With the efficiency of a snail, he attempted social communication while being totally hammered. "Raccoon," he said, offering a hand filled to the brim with tribal tattoos, "just Raccoon." He didn't actually give the stranger some time to shake his hand. Raccoon took his hand back and pulled out an ornamental pipe, ignited it, and did big several puffs to get rid of that disgusting vomit aftertaste.
  3. Kyle often forgot that Klavier was too cool for morphine. Even if he got a shot, the needle would probably snap. They rushed, they pushed, a few several men started dropping like flies and Kyle felt the heat go up his neck. He dropped immediately, sprayed by splinters of wood as he leaped to the nearest line of cover. The few who fell in were all shot to death, except for a lone writhing earthworm who laid face-down on the pile of cheese-holed bodies; yelling incoherently while clutching his thigh directly in the line of fire. Fuck. Kyle reached out his hand to grab him by the shirt - shielded by the machine gun fire - and started playing doctor. The soldier needed something to grip on. A red hand smeared on half of Kyle's face. "Fuck! FUCK!" "Shut up, man! I know, I know-" Kyle took out a shot of morphine. Not missing a beat, he plunged it directly into his bloodstream. "Press it for me," he said, as he placed his hands on the big gaping hole as it oozed tomato juice, "it's not that bad, you can walk it off," Kaplinsky sucked the air through his teeth, "I can't walk it off if I can't fucking walk-" "Clear," Kyle pulled out a thick elastic loop and tied it hard above the wound, eliciting a grunt. He fixed the tourniquet, the guy being reduced to a mess of chaotic cussing. Two other combat medics rushed in from the entrance; one went over to his soldier and the other checked the pile of dead men. Kyle jumped from his feet and clutched his gun. "Take over for me," he said, scrambling to the other soldiers and coming up behind Klavier. It was like watching a brutal football match. Except it was a blood-hungry dragon vs some poor guy. "Wew." Kyle squinted. "Was that really necessary?" He watched a charred corpse splat unto the ground. “Not even a little.” When they pushed, Kyle kept up; dodging bullets and returning them, pulling away the injured from the dead. He handed Klavier a shot of morphine, and when he run out of those, he had to improvise with Ramsey's latest findings from the lab: a bag full of orange-glowing, intense as hell, adrenaline shots. And - conveniently enough - they were strong enough for one soldier to shoot up an entire terrorist organization. He contemplated on giving them to Klavier. "I think that's the command centre," Kyle peeked, a brownish smear of dried blood covering one half of his face. “Looks like it,” said Klavier. Kyle glanced up. He found a vent that lead straight inside the room. He lifted his gun and sprayed it, destroying the metal bars and the fan inside, toppling it over. He looked at Klavier, and found that his face looked a bit scarier than usual. “Only one way to find out, right?” Klavier lifted his gun. Kyle lifted a flashbang. "Damn." It wasn't a defeated kind of damn. It was the damn kind of damn. Their patient was breathing, stable, and not dead. His chest was royally opened with big ungracious bloody clamps, a few tubes here and there, some fucked up stitches right on the muscle of his heart, but that didn't matter. He actually lived. Griffin huffed out of disbelief, his eyes never actually leaving the heartbeat monitor. Aksis watched human lungs inflate and deflate, Yankee clapped his hands together and wheezed. Ramsey's arms were elbow-deep covered in blood and bodily fluid, tomato juice trickling under his carefully baby-powdered medical gloves. He went to the nearby sink, got all cleaned up, went back to his surgery team and pulled out a cigarette like the smoothest bastard in town because, he is, as of now, the smoothest bastard in town. Everyone was silent, half-grins on their faces as Aksis chuckled under his robotic breath. Ram stood there like a jaded homeroom teacher. He circled his wrist and looked at his team. "What do we say, children?" "Fuck you, Ramsey." 2x "Thank you, Ramsey." He bowed towards Aksis with the grace of a smug life-saver. He blew a gust of fire on his cigarette and proceeded to smoke the hell out of his last stick of tobacco. About half an hour ago, Ramsey took control of the operation and finally earned respect among his cutthroat peers. He puffed a smoke cloud and maybe a few embers from his throat. "You're welcome." Outside, a wave of hoots and testerone roars filled the camp. The fighting stopped. They won. It was nighttime and everyone was going home; Ramsey was bumming with the Casimir crew once again, but he stood out at the open entrance where the ship laid it's dock wide open. The remaining soldiers were filling in, always a sad thing to see after the missions and gun-hell galore. There were less than half of the original men and women. All of them were either scratch-free or bullet-ridden. They strode in. Most were being helped up. Some weren't even conscious. Ramsey was pulling up some cargo into the ship when Kyle called out from behind him. "Hey dude," Kyle came into the light, washed in smoke and blood. "Hey yourself," Ramsey leaned into his cargo and faced his friend. He took his glasses off and ran his hand through his matted hair. "So like, about last night," Kyle scratched his head, "we can just, uh, forget about that, right?" The cargo started slipping. Ramsey took a moment to fix it. "If you got my message, could you delete it? I was, really, really fucked up and-" "What about last night?" Kyle paused. He started to look confused. "If it's about the whole trying to get me piss-drunk to dance with the strippers, it's cool. It's fine, really, the memory of dancing on-stage with my dick getting squashed on is something I'll never be able to drink off." A few seconds passed by. "Uh.." Kyle trailed off. "Yeah- yeah! So sorry about that, man, uh," he gestured, "can I see your phone really quick?" "My what?" More seconds passed by. Kyle gave him a look that radiated unprecedented levels of seriousness. "Uh." Ramsey huffed some smoke. "Okay." He reached into his pocket, slowly pulling out a phone, "So what's this about a message-" and watched it disappear from his hands as Kyle practically snatched it from his fingers. Kyle's thumbs worked at the speed of light followed by the constant noise of tick-tick-tick-tick-tick-tick-tick, and, Delete. "Alright," Kyle threw Ramsey's phone at him. It nearly tumbled into the ship's dock. "Thanks! See you tomorrow, man!" The dude ran off at mach speed. Even then, he was still yelling. "Nothing's wrong! Nothing's wrong at all! Bye! Bye!" Ramsey was left with an overwhelming amount of confusion. In the far off distance, he could make out a silhouette of someone else he knew. He waved at Echo with the energy of a sloth. He couldn't tell if her girlfriend was there with her, so he waved at whoever.
  4. Tommy glances up at Ashton; relieved, maybe a bit happy towards his response. It was a strange feeling altogether—to her at least, that the approval of someone else helped her feel more at ease. After avenging the death of her parents, Tommy didn't know what else to do. She drifted in and out of two worlds. One, a normal life, and the other, the reality of working a struggling mercenary paycheck and the dirty work necessary for a vigilante's goal. The only upside of being an orphan was that you had an incredible amount of freedom, but an equally incredible amount of loneliness. Maybe she had a few friends here and there, but the feeling of wanting to belong was something she'd often denied, and, at such a young age, there were countless of other ways to make her feel more useless—unwanted, even. It didn't help the fact that the rest of her family were either dead, unknown, or on the other side of the planet. When the thought of going to school like every other teenager started to make its way up into her head, she only needed to look down at her hands to break some rose-colored lens. And as a result, she grew up faster. She's still offered milk at the bar, though. “Before I was doing this kind of stuff, I enlisted in the Terran military." Genuine curiosity. "Really?" "Not for any particular reason, just needed something to do. I can’t say that I have a great love for the country or Gaia." The rest of the convo went as expected. Ashton talked about himself, Tommy was curious to death, a couple of cars passed by, they walked some more, then they stopped at a big, blue, rectangle. Her eyes traced Ashton's gestures on the digital board, taking the time to read the articles before he swiped them away and repeat. Eventually, he chose one. Tommy read the article, and found her eyes stuck to the monochrome photographs attached. “Do you think something can be evil, without being consciously aware of it?” Ashton used his finger to start scrolling down. Tommy took a few seconds to process the question. "Uhhh—yeah. Like, if a lil' girl was actually a necromancer in disguise and I didn't know? Yeah—yeah. Something can be evil." There was a line they ended on. It was a big sentence in bold caps. Tommy squinted, and murmured. "... The Rat King orders the head of the beast?"
  5. Wearing the same old clothing, walking in the same old shoes. Pluto had played pretend so well, he started to wonder if he developed some sort of lie. Lying? Maybe, but, he thinks of it as acting; and acting he is very good at. His character: a naive and amiable butler, soft-spoken and soft-hearted. Always altruistic. Always kind. Always so solemn. It's very easy, he thinks, to play the role of someone who he once was years ago, even if he doesn't remember all the finer details of said someone many years ago. He's always stuck in a corner now and then, when everyone asks him: Pluto, do you remember this, Pluto do you remember that, and, for the most part, he doesn't remember. In fact, everything would be a whole lot easier if they didn't throw out all his things—his sentimental things. He was conflicted. Two decades of his life, thrown away in one day. That was one way for the world to say: “Good noon, Pluto,” Nevermind. It's showtime. Pluto glanced up, a smear of dirt on his cheek, a pair of gardening scissors in his gloved hands. Iyalon was there, staring down at him. He gave him his signature smile, the gentlest of smiles that might have earned him favoritism at one point. Many would agree that it's pleasant, saying it's peaceful. Some would disagree, saying it's unsettling by the way he never blinked. The seneschal wiped the stain on his cheek with a white sleeve. "Good noon, Iyalon." “Before you finish cutting those dead blossoms off, would you care to listen to my plight?” He blinked. Pluto looked behind Iyalon, going over to his side, moving behind himself, and then looked back up at him. A moment passed by before his smile turned into a snarky, toothy grin. He turned back to the roses and snippity snipped the dead flowers away before speaking again. "You sounded so formal, I thought Lord Jasper was here staring at you." Pluto placed down the scissors, standing up from his knees and admiring his hour's work. He placed his hands on his hips and dirtied his shirt. "Did all your work make you forget how to talk to an old friend? I'll care to listen to your plight if you start sounding like Iyalon." @vielle
  6. me: i'm going to be super productive and do all my threads today!!

    me, 24 hours later:


    posts will be up tomorrow, sorry for the wait everyone 

    1. vielle


      a whole #mood, save us

  7. @Monoxide chad: mistakes lighthearted joke as genuine insult roxanne:
  8. III: YOU TOO, WOULD... [? WTA] Today, this afternoon, Lord Jasper has requested that I come with him to the Greywoods. The GREYWOODS! Here I was, playing house with young Suri and her aunties, Esme and Merel, when he pounced upon me like a tiger and gallantly said: Pluto, won't you come with me to the Greywoods? My mouth dropped. Luckily, nobody heard. Thank the gods nobody heard. I was in the middle of plucking dandelions and daisies for flower crowns! I certainly would prefer that he rather ask me to fetch a rose from a secret hidden garden in the manor or whatever – to give to himself or his newly beloved wife – I – really, and I digress, really, don't like the Greywoods. If I were to be honest, something's not right about this... I think. What's my lord going to do? Certainly he's not going to attempt striding in? Maybe he'll throw a stick into the forest and tell me to go play fetch. As strange as it sounds, I wouldn't be surprised if he told me to do that, it's Lord Jasper, for crying out loud. But – you know him. I can't refuse Lord Jasper. He's either going to make me feel bad... or... make me feel bad. If I were to be honest, I've known that he's looked upon the Greywoods for quite some time, particularly with this look in his eyes that I can't quite describe. I can't quite describe because I don't know how to tell the difference between an innocent shine of curiosity or the glint of a sharpened blade. As I went along with him to the stables, my imagination run rampant. Jasper was drawn to the woods, and I didn't know what to do. Despite my cautious feeling, dare say it's suspicion, we arrived at the Greywood. After hours of horseback, we were greeted by a welcoming sight. Too welcoming, I say. The entrance was sunkissed by white sunlight, a line of orange-red trees parallel to each other as it descended further into a decay of darkness. The trail has been left so untouched for so many years that I can faintly tell the prints of horseshoes left by the ancestors who dare wandered into the Greywood. It was beautiful. We stood at a point where the plains connected to the path so our horses were not surrounded by trees, but even then, at this distance... It radiated danger. The wind is a dying moan. Silent, Lord Jasper and I bask in the ambience of rustling leaves and animal calls. Bird songs and tree groans. Hushed whispers and fake promises. The Greywood plays tricks on the mind; it wasn't a surprise that even our horses were beginning to feel a bit queasy. I run my glove down my horse's shoulder, and, find myself staring into a black hole from an entourage of red orange trees. I'm waiting for my lord to suggest that I go in and take a look around, to say that I should go fetch his stick or whatever. Worse case scenario, it ends up as him going to take a look around, and I, in no place to tell him not to do so, would stay seated on my horse as my lord slowly succumbs to insanity. But when I look up at him, I find that the mischief in his eyes have completely run dry. Desaturated, almost. As he looks into the Greywood, it's like he's not even here. Instead of moving forward, he's frozen in place. He's somewhere else, where the trees have pulled him into the woods. Jasper is completely fixated. I open my mouth to say something, but then: a small bird swoops down from above and flies straight into the Greywood; not a single chirp to be heard, not a single feather to be seen. It was like it was eaten alive the moment it flew inside. Anxious, I begin to wonder, Are there really such things as monsters in the Greywood? "Do you feel that," Jasper suddenly asks, almost absently in his quiet words. It takes a few seconds for me to notice that he’s said anything at all. “Hm?” I glance back and forth, mulling over the question in my head. “Feel what?” A pause, like he's letting me wander about in question. Jasper’s gaze now pivots to me, staring as he did so. "There is a call that tugs in my chest, when I look upon the Greywood. Varda has felt the same, she's told me." He hums, looking back to the tree line a scant few paces away. "Perhaps it has something to do with our lineage." For a moment, I sat there, silent. I don't ever recall a Lady-Hildebrand being seduced by the calling of the Greywood, but I suppose the thought of any Hildebrand wandering into the woods is undoubtedly alarming. Much more Lady Varda, the pinnacle of innocence despite being the oldest of her sisters. "I recall the ancestors that once trekked through the Greywood," I turn to look at my lord, "they all turned...” I gesture with my hand around my head. Only then does mischief slowly grow in his eyes, like the found amusement in my discomfort of having to imply that he would, too, grow insane. He seems to understand completely, giving me his crooked smile, unable to help that wicked grin across his face. "None do." My attention fades from him, and I look away. “I don’t trust the Greywood.” "Is this your way of advising me not to enter it, Pluto?" “If I may be so bold, sir," I inhale, "Yes. I believe so.” I feel as if I touched something I shouldn't have. “Unless you do, plan to enter it?” I cut myself on the very knife he pointed at me. When I glance at Jasper, he's smiling at me. Frost begins on the curves of his lips, authority steeled in his eyes. "If I do, will you stop me?" He suddenly breaks into a short huff of breath of perhaps laughter, perhaps disbelief. Powerlessly, I stammer. “I-“ "You know,” Jasper moves his horse forward and stops to look at me. “The stories say that the Lords-Hildebrand who have made their way into the Greywood have all gone mad, but what if they had seen something else?" Jasper shrugs. "The truth? The reality that their rose colored glasses have withheld from them? “If you enter the Greywood, what would you see in yourself?" I'm confident that my relationship with Jasper and I is that of a rich man with a whip and an excited dog whipped to silence. He's quite the rebellious type - sometimes he might even remind me of Esme. But: he's already made his point clear. Although I may be close to the Hildebrand family, I’m certainly not their mother. Now: What would I see in myself? MANY EYES; SAW ALL It takes me more than a moment to gather my thoughts in silence. "I don't know what I'd see, my lord." "Perhaps," Jasper murmurs, "freedom?" Huh. ... I once considered that. I stammer again. I blink furiously and clear my throat. "I've no clue what you mean." A chuckle. "I was merely wondering, is all, what keeps you tethered here to us and our play-housing when you could be out there, seeking out your fortune." Though I take longer to respond, I glance at Jasper, a pained smile dancing on my lips. “You forget, my lord. I'm non-human – whatever I am – with not much meaningful purpose. I've no family, no history, no nothing. Being your butler, play-housing with you and your siblings; I suppose it is the closest thing I have as family. As seneschal, proof that I exist. “I don’t know what I’d see.” Jasper is silent. "Loyal," he seems to decide suddenly, "however foolish that may yet prove to be, but loyal nonetheless." I nod at my lord. Jasper gives his horse a kick, and going back the way we came. Turning my back, the Greywood watches me. I turn my head at the shoulder and find myself staring again. Though I fear it, I can't find it in myself to look away; there's something about it that I can't quite put my finger on. Something whispered to me, then. what would you see
  9. Roxanne stood out a little more than she expected. But then again: red hair, red eyes, red lips so cherry-flavored you'd wanna ask to kiss them, why wouldn't she stand out? It didn't hurt to be a little bold, especially when you're surrounded by people you've never met before. Besides, the old hide-your-face-behind-a-hood thing was getting old. If assassins are so good at their job, then why even bother hiding your face? There was a flicker in her eyes, like the innocent thrill of finding some newfound prey to eat. She's dropped herself in sea full of fish, and Roxanne started hunting. There was a good view of the pub from upstairs, a perfect spot to watch the drunks clink glasses and break them. She guised herself as a sleeping wanderer from the way she leaned dangerously far into her chair, a pair of leather legs stacked ontop her table, a white cattleman hat laying flat on her face. She blew a raspberry and focused on the noise to stay awake. The whole scouting-for-some-fun sounds pretty boring, sure, and running around to buy people drinks sounded like a good idea, but in Roxanne's case: pubs are pretty much a red flag. As much as she'd like to head over to the bar to go flirt with the bartender, there was always a high chance of Roxanne being the flirt-tee. Then—it caught her eye. She landed on a target, maybe two, depending if they wanted to merge their tables. "Hey, stranger." She was seated across a dragoon. Her presence appeared out of thin air and she gave him a tip of a hat—maybe even a dangerous look as leaned back into her chair after putting her leg up. "Or should I say, strangers?" There was a piece of cheese in her hand, and a portion from his warrior friend's table was gone. Roxanne glanced at the woman, gave her a wink, and took a bite of the cheese. "I'm not interrupting anything, am I?" She leaned forward, "good," and didn't let them answer, "so like," Roxanne squinted at the dragoon man. "What's up with the coat? You an exhibitionist or something? "I'm kidding. That's what I heard from the other tables. You look a little sketchy, mystery man." A piece of bread materialized in her other hand like a magic trick. "I heard you guys were talking about the assassin guild. Any chance one of you guys are thinkin' bout' getting in?" She spiraled an index finger towards the mystery man. "I'm guessin' you. Ready for cheerleader tryouts?" @Monoxide @Baobhan Sith
  10. II: WHAT ELSE. Ursa Madeum[? WTA] Lady Aspen has suggested documenting strange experiences. Or occurrences that happen to me regarding my... peculiar ability. It was a splendid idea! I never thought of doing that. I only like writing in my journal because it’s fun. Onwards: I haven’t a clue what I am. Though my physique is completely human, there’s nothing human-like about me, at all! My ‘skin’ is made of ceramic layers, as explained by Lady Aspen; it’s as if a sculpture had come to life, she said, except I'm a sculpture who bleeds a finite amount of gold. Blood that I can control, manipulate, form into what I want it to form. Be it a blade or something as simple as a rabbit statue, I can create. Everyone worries that I may use these qualities to commit evil. Murder, they said. Which is, truly, rude. I would never do that! I may be part of the Orchid and that means I must kill at one point in my life, but the fact remains clear. I would never kill in favor of evil. Now – this is truly strange I must say, I feel pain? I know that sounds silly, but it’s really true. Um. I cannot feel texture? I feel nothing? How do I explain this? Whatever, you get the gist of it. I can’t feel the pain in drowning. I don’t really breathe, so… One day, I was out in the fields and got attacked by a flock of crows. That was the first time I’d ever felt sensation. They pecked out my eye, and, I had felt completely overwhelmed after feeling pain. So overwhelmed in fact, I was taken over by fear, and the crows left me in literal pieces. Not too literal, they merely pecked the hell out of me. Eventually I was found by Lord Jasper. He took me to Lady Aspen to fix me up. That was also the day I earned the name, the Golden Crow. Lord Jasper thought it up as a joke, you know, because the crows pecked me to death. And, well, knowing Lord Jasper, he and his sister were well on their way to destroying the laboratory. Luckily, I managed to calm them down when I said it was a nice name in order to save said laboratory, though I find that title odd, it sounds nice if you don't know the meaning behind it. Lady Aspen continued trying to assemble my 'pieces', while Jasper kept teasing his sister for fixing me with glue. And then, one day while training in the Silver Halls, Iyalon shattered me. On accident. Shirin was also there to witness everything. This time, I did not feel pain. I only remember the quick blur of a sword and, everything went dark. When I least expected it, I woke up to Lady Aspen staring down at me from above. As it turns out, I had been decapitated! Only then when my head was placed back, I regained consciousness. I felt the sensation on my throat, and I screamed. The day after, I trained harder and harder in order to avoid another shattering. Though the days after that, my experiences with shattering had become much... much more worse. I fell from the library’s ladder, a horse bucked me into splinters after I saved Lord Nai from it, I once chopped off my hand while trying to chop a steak, and, yes, so on and so forth. So came another discovery. If I could be broken, I could be put back piece by piece. But is that it? Is that really all there is to me? What about the gold in my veins? I only use it to entertain, maybe fascinate by the way I mold it. I've already sworn not to use my powers in order to kill, so weapons are out of the question. Every time I look at my hands, I wonder. What else is there to me? Am I really just a servant? Bound to washing dishes, dusting paintings and getting rid of termites, all my life..? I find that disappointing.
  11. “Drug trade is legal in Terrenus, government is in on it. It’s easier to keep people healthy when this kind of stuff regulated.” "Oh!" Does that mean I could try doing drugs? Wait—no— Ashton speeds up, turns, and stops. Tommy regarded Ashton as her role-model. Not only was he older, but he had first-hand experience in and out of the workplace, a guy good at bashing heads in and making his points clear. A responsible, cool-headed adult; like a wiser, older brother whose wisdom she had to learn from. So when he started talking, Tommy looked up at him with big eyes; as if trying to burn his every word into her brain, glancing at every hand gesture like being hypnotized by a magician's trick. She stood there, silent, listening with an open-minded and an eagerness to impress. He gave a her thoughtful pause, a little moment before he'd say more, and Tommy takes her hands out of her jacket and found that they were feeling a little bit clammy. What's that? Didn't notice until now? Tommy figured the air would help dry it off, maybe fiddle with them a little bit, trying to think about her answers for a little bit, but air doesn't dry off that overwhelming surge of nervousness, now, does it? Keep it cool. Ashton speaks again, and Tommy looks up, one more time. "Your convictions should be so powerful that other people are immediately convinced when they hear them.” “So, Tommy. Let me ask you again. What are you going to do to bring Justice to Blairville?” Her mind wandered to the conversation they had at the diner. "Beat up bad guys. Thin out crime." Looking up at Ashton, Tommy blinks, and leans to the side. Maybe a bit anxious on how that sounded, she waited how he'd react.
  12. I: BEFORE. Ursa Madeum [? WTA] Pluto has been confused his entire life. I scratched that sentence out with lots and lots of ink after I realized how stupid I sounded writing in the third person. Sometimes I wish I had a circulatory system to express how deeply embarrassed I am. Ahem, I have been confused my entire life. Many, many years ago I woke up in the wheat fields of Hildebrand. I still have no recollection as to why and how—what I am—and, why I am so different from everybody else. All I knew that day is that I was taken into their home, given a name, and was formally brandished to serve the Hildebrands. Presumably for the rest of my life, as implied by Lord Strom. It’s been bugging me these days why I’ve never questioned that. “Many-eyes, saw all; many-limbed, touched all; many-minds, knew all,” I muttered, writing down my every word in the journal on my lap. The light coming from the big window in the library is still cold, though I suppose it’s because I woke up hours before breakfast to sneak into the library this morning just to read this book. Stomach against the wooden floor, I prop myself up on one elbow and tippity-tap my feather pen. I found this particular book in the library yesterday while I was cleaning the shelves (don’t tell anyone), and it was hidden in the far back, eaten by all the cobwebs and the dust rabbits. At first glance, it was quite mysterious. I inspected it out of pure curiosity and decided to take a closer look. Its cover had been torn off, the edges were all chewed on, and all I found inside were contents about the ‘anomalies’ in Terrenus. Despite its appearance, though it may sound strange, I believe it's not that mysterious. It even has a publisher and everything. It's probably quite popular. It even says ‘general guide’ on the front page underneath some stains. Still, I’m a tad bit surprised that a book like this managed its way into the gardening section. Most books we have here are about plants. Or farming. Or gardening. I tried to recover most of the information here as much I could. Unfortunately, most of the pages in it have been eaten by the pest problem we’re having this year. When I opened it, a big moth flew out and attacked me. I still need to take care of that bloody pest problem. Argh, enough about bugs. I'm quite thrilled to be pardoned today! I never get this much spare time in the manor, being a responsible seneschal and whatnot. When I do get spare time—I always spend it roaming around the gardens and looking at the flowers. Sitting by a creek and watching the frogs croak. But everybody knows that. The truth is, I like to spend more time at the library; reading books about Terrenus, Renovatio, and Genesaris. I never get to venture outside of the manor, so I like to study books about the world. A non-human like me would be shattered the moment I step outside. One day, when the Tyrant King chokes on his own tongue and dies a horrible death, I’m going to venture outside the walls.
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