Author’s Note: Happy New Year. We’re starting off the year with a preview of two new stories.Valkyrie’s Lament and Mind Linker. Vote the one’s you want to read~
Silver woke up in a coffin. Boxed in on all sides, a musty smell of stone and wood invaded her nose. She felt confined, breathless, and even chained.
Where was she? She pushed herself up and smacked her head against the stone cover causing her a temporary black out. She fell back down momentarily unconscious. All her memories became hazy.
It didn’t take long for her to come back to her sense. She awoke once again from her concussion. The pain in her head drummed throughout her whole skull telling her the past moment mistake of sitting up too fast. This time she remembered not to sit up, but stay lying down. She groaned. Raising her hand, she rubbed her head gently. For a moment she saw pure white causing her to feel queasy. How did I end up in here anyways?
Her hands were reaching up above, touching the cold wet stone. It’s rough textured brush against her skin making her shudder. With a grunt, she used her upper muscle and pushed. Nothing budge, making her more uncomfortable as time went on. This time, Silver pushed even harder till finally she heard an audible creak of granite against stone. This sudden sound was a relief to Silver’s ear, making her delighted that she did not have to force too much pressure that could burden her. The heavy coffin lid move to the side, allowing her to sit up.
Looking around, she noticed that she was in a room. The windows were draped with black making light impossible to enter. Only a couple streams of light entered from the top of the ceiling, lighting up the room with dreary colors. Dust, cobwebs, and even dead leaves scattered around the floor below each of the filtered light. Nothing before her seemed familiar, nor did it make sense on where she was. Everything felt to new to her, almost as if she was born again.
“Did I die and get buried?” Silver spoke out loud confused. Her voice gave out a small crack making her cough.
Placing her hands on the side of the coffin she pushed herself up. She noticed that she was in an black and white uniform with button seals of a rose on her cuff and down her blazers. She was wearing a black skirt matched with simple shoes. Silver straightened herself up, letting her back stretch from laying down too long. Her shoulders and back were tight as if they had not moved in ages. The last thing she remembered was walking back from home from the last day from school. Other than that, nothing came to her mind. What really got her confused was that she wondered how she ended up in this coffin in the beginning.
She got out of the coffin and noticed at the base of the coffin was a small pedestal. Walking over, she stopped in front of the table with cups filled with strange red colored juice. They were even small handmade dolls, a mirror, five bottles of empty vials, and blood red crystals. She for some reason habitually pocketed the vials for she thought that she possibly might be of use.
She picked up the small pocket size mirror and checked her face for any bruises. What look back at her were striking grey eyes with silver fair hair that was long and straight. A heart shaped face that made her look more like an adult than a child. Soft pale skin that any woman would be jealous of.
Her skinny muscles that were never worked out in her whole life was plain as day. Her appearance was not dazzlingly beauty, one could say that she was above average in looks. Even her height was considered tall for a normal girl. She was about five feet nine inches, and her arms were slender that reminded her of a willow.
Not a single patches of blue or red was present and with a sigh, she placed the mirror onto the table. Pulling back her long silver hair, she tied it into a ponytail. At the corner of her eyes, some red caught her attention. With curiosity, she turned towards the the blood red crystals.
“Crystals?” Silver reached over and picked one of them up. All of a sudden a dim red light glowed around the Crystals, giving off a pulsating warmth. Her mouth started to salivate, an alluring hunger that made her want to eat it. With a quick movement, her hands went up to her lips as she took a bite. A sudden rush of energy spread out to her body causing her to feel a sense of her body being replenished and healed.
Following after a sudden sharp pain could be felt in her throat. She held up her hands to her throat as she faltered forward. It was an uncontrollable thirst, her mouth were parch making it feel as if her lips were like the desert sand. Her hands automatically reached over towards the cup of red juice. A sharp pain shocked her whole sense constricting her throat. Steadying herself, she grabbed the edge of the table, her palms became sweaty.
Her vision turned blurry red and the red juice was making it look that much delicious than before. A sweet scent of apple tickled her nose. She reached over and brought the cup to her mouth. The scent of the juice intensified ten folds, making her impossible to hold back.
Instinctively she downed the juice and felt an slimey thickness that easily passed her throat. A sudden wave of relief could be felt from the refreshing drink that made her throat tingle. The sweet nectar of iron and a blend of apple could be tasted from the drink. At that moment she knew what is was: Blood.
In shock, she threw the cup in hand and the content spilled all over the floor. The blood seeped through the cracks and puddled around the cup as if someone got killed.
“What is this?” Silver felt disgusted. Her thirst were quenched. The blood on the ground slowly started move towards her direction as if she was a magnet. Taking a step back, Silver uneasily stared at the predicament in front of her till finally the bloody liquid slithered up onto her body and disappeared. Once again she felt a strange high that rejuvenated her. She couldn’t help, but feel odd at the whole ordeal that had happened before her. It was as if her skin was a sponge that took a sip of the blood like some kind of moisturizer.
Alarmed she got up to see if anything else happened to her, but nothing else had changed. Not to far away Silver saw a door leading the way out, but in front of the exit was a bright shining sunlight that was blocking the way. Silver couldn’t help but cautiously walked over and placed her up-turn hands towards the light, she felt a warm sunlight tingling on the back of her hands. Hoping that she was not some monster. Not a single hiss or the sensation of burning could be heard. Relieved, she walked out the door and into the long passage way.
A door opened up and a jet of black and red smokes sweep through the whole room. Silver took in a quick deep breath, before the smoke got to her and ran towards the smoke. She ran towards the door that was filled with thick smoke making everything in front of her blurry and difficult to see. All of a sudden, she had a Dejavu of a memory that seem like a dream. She remembered bits and pieces of broken memories of a strange game, where one betted their life on the line. A distinct familiar male’s voice echoed in her mind telling her that this was an antidote that could save her life.
This was the first game, a test of courage where one bet their life. She knew that in the beginning of the game, each person would be gas and poisoned. One could only push forward and run out or stay and black out. This smoke baptism was actually even more diabolical than all the other games to come. Inhaling this smoke was actually the beginning of her death count to the 29th day. They were all destined to die on the 29th, unless they took the chance to obtain a special pill that will dissolve the poison in there body. The worst of it all was that this poison that were inside their body will overtime slowly sap one’s stamina everyday making it ten times more difficult to fight.
Multiple hall ways stood in front of her, from the left to the right the smoke was the weakest to the left, while the right was the thickest. She took the chance and went towards the thicker part of the hallway. She felt her way through the darkness by touching the walls. She did not know what was at the end, but she knew that the reward was there. Every step she took, the smoke became denser and denser. The smoke already prevaded slowly into her pores and mixing into her body.
Her lungs were fighting from pain for air, screaming for her to take a breathe. The world started to spin and her mind became dizzy. Any longer now she would faint and all her efforts would be wasted. Three days they would be all out, and on the third day she knew danger will once again come knocking on their door.
Letting out all the carbon dioxide in her lungs, she took small sips of air into her lungs and held in her breathe. Even the small intake made her whole body shake out in sweat and her muscles screamed telling her that she should stop and lay down. Every five steps, she repeated the process, but the it shocked her whole body more and more. It was as if a thousand needles were stabbing at her multiple times in unison. All her senses were screaming to take a rest, but her mind kept her pushing forward.
She knew that if she stopped she was going to die, especially because of the potency from the smoke was a lot more than the one outside. With wobbling steps, she pressed forward till finally she saw a ray of hope. A lone light cut through from the ceiling as it flagged her of the end of her journey.
Silver fell forward from the weak amount of energy that she had left, her hands reached out and started to pull her forward. Every ounce that she could muster, she made her way towards the shimmering light. The thick smoke slowly started to clear up and she saw a small pedestal underneath the light.
Silver pulled herself up with much difficulties. Her hands felt a cold water, when her hands felt around for any possible antidote. Without a second thought, she scooped up the water with one hand and took a sip. She could feel a dulling of pain that washed over. Greedily she splashed herself with more water by dumping her face into the basin. Without even stopping, she continually to gulp in the water to relieve the horrible pain.When she thought she was done, she fell onto the floor exhausted blacking out.
“Oh? Oh? Lookey here? We actually got a brave soul who took the chance to take the path difficult and the narrow.”
Silver heard a young lady’s voice. She groaned. Her muscles twitched and a sharp pain spread out throughout her whole body awakening her in seconds.
“Running straight into the lion’s mouth. I am surprised that you would take such a foolish act. Or maybe you hope and gamble with your life that they were something in here. It does not matter.You are the ninth person to attempt to take the difficult route, I applaud you. Out of everyone you are the first and only one that come here the quickest. You seriously have an iron will. I am glad to see that they are some human out there that are willingly to bet their feeble lives. So with your foolish bravery, I award you an item.”
A sound of a metal clatters onto the ground in front of her, creating a weeennng like sound.
“I’ll give you your reward. It’s a spacial ring that can hold many items.”
Silver slowly reached over and grabbed the reward in her hand. The cold metal seeped into her palm.
“Human remember this. I have seen many foolish humans fail from their stupid bravery. There are times when one must learn to give up their life for a just cause or it becomes a pointless suicide. Suicide is never rewarded. If you ever succeed in your attempt to kill your own self, I will personally come for your soul. I can tell you will attempt the borderline between these two worlds very often. I will savor the day when you fail.”
A low creepy chuckled rose out of lady’s throat. Silver shivered. She knew what the lady said was the truth, but even still she reeled in her fear and stare back coldly at the misty shadow that stood in front of her.
“Wonderful. Wonderful. I love those cold piercing eyes.” The lady clapped her hand. “I like you even more.” She got of Silver hands and turned around to leave.
Silver watched her slowly merged into the darkness and disappears without a trace. She couldn’t help but wonder who it was, but instead she was glad that whoever it was didn’t stay behind.
“Did she come here to gloat at me?” Silver frowned. Pushing herself back up, she felt her body was slowly being relieved of the stress and pain. She also felt like her body had become a bit more lighter.
Reaching over with her left hand, she picked up the small ring in her palm and placed it on her right index finger. The reason was for one reason to remember her love and to save herself for him once again.
A flash of old memory sparked through her mind when she looked at the ring. Now that she thought about it, this ring was something that she did expect to receive that was why she was instinctively ran towards the denser clouds of smoke. She remembered one of the top ten talking about the reward for fearless braving through this game will get you something that will become very precious and sought out for.
With her first game complete, she pulled out a small empty vials that she keep from in her pocket. Scooping out the waters from the bowl, she quickly filled up at least five and placed them in my ring. She left the stand and continued deeper into the maze like corridor. She thought she could go back towards the same way that she came in, but she realized her stupidity. The door was closed, barring her way from returning. Silver continued to walk through the dimly lit passageway, it felt like hours since she walked through the endless maze, turning from left to right and back again.
It wasn’t until she saw another glimmer of light that she picked up her pace. She knew it was either one of the two things: A trap or salvation. Silver took this chance to get closer, she took careful steps making sure she did not set off any unsuspecting traps. Any hidden clues that normal people wouldn’t normally see, or possible hidden mechanism that could kill. Lucky for her bits of memories gave her the edge, allowing her to search for hidden clues. She stopped and noticed on the edge of the wall, a hidden trap.
Squatting down, she used her slender hands to carefully remove the simple trap. She was quite surprised that she knew how to remove the trap, her dexterous fingers removed the trap and she kept going. Finally she found herself in a bright room with three doors. On the floor smeared in red paint like substance words were written on the floor.
“To you who has entered the narrow path, which door would you choose? Hope, Despair, or Destruction?” She read out loud.
On each door, painted in scarlet were only one word written boldly as if each one were crying out to her.
“Hope?” Silver was not the type of person to believe in too much of such things. “That is not the path for me.” Then she looked at the next door.
“Despair, I’m no masochist. Why would I want to be depressed all the time?” Then she look at the final door.
“Destruction….” Something in her mind pulled her to go towards this one. “I think I’ll go with that.” She walked over and reached for the doorknob. Turning it slowly, she entered through the door. A desolate darkness swept through her body and pulled her in. She boldly stepped forward without being scared, and pushed forward through the dark.
A creepy voice chuckled.
“Who’s there?” Silver stopped and looked around.
“A beautiful garden of scarlet red flowers.” A soft eerie voice spoke out. “Growing from the skulls of the dead in the wasteland called battlefield. The plea of the Innocent cries out as they scream to be spared, but the wicked sword gleams dangerously underneath the craze of the red moon. With a flick, red fountain of water spurts outwards like a ruby giving the thirsty flowers its daily dose of nutrients.”
“Who are you?” Silver called out but instead she was answered with poems.
“The living cries out to the sword. Why? Why must we die? The sword spoke, because it is my master’s will. I am just a blade that moves with the will of my master. Ask my master the reason for his slaughter. The living turned towards the master and once again cried out. Why? Why must we die? The master spoke, I am doing this for a just cause. To save my family for your dark savagery. With a swing, the master killed the living. He was all alone drenched in red, thinking that he have saved his loved ones, he realize that now they fear him instead.”
Silenced followed and Silver was not sure what to say. Without meaning too, she asked. “So what happens?”
“The master, turned his back on his family and left. He traveled far and wide looking for the answer. He felt that he had done a good deed in saving the lives of his love ones, they say they knew, but their eyes and heart spoke a different song. They fear him for what he has become: A monster that steals away lives as if he were breathing in air. A monster that can not comprehend anymore how precious life is for he has become the reaper that easily takes the lives of others.”
“What does this have to do with anything?”
“The master knew then, the moment he took the first life with his own hands, it was dyed heavily with weight of pain, suffering, and even the path of one’s own destruction. Purity was no more, and instead a thickly filled color of black and red dye his hands. His soul trapped in an endless vicious cycle of pain and suffering. A happiness that is a fleeting memory that he cannot grasp. For you whose hands are white as snow would you take this path? To dye your hands with black and red?”
Silver thought it over. Now that the voice had spoke, she realized that she had not killed before, but her mind and memories served her otherwise. Her determination unphased, she replied. “Yes.”
“Then it shall be so.” The voice fades away and in front of her a black katana with a red and black sheath was standing upright in the air. Floating, waiting for Silver to take.
Silver walked over and reached for the sword. She grabbed it without a second thought. The sword glowed black and red, three words spoke clearly in her mind: Master welcome home.
The sword became silent and the glow disappeared. In bold red on the sheathe a name in red magically appeared.
“Comet? That’s your name?”.
The red words disappeared and once again she was left in the darkness. In seconds a door ahead appeared and opened. Blinding streak of light entered into the room, making her cover her eyes. She took a couple of steps forward and then she ran. Her escape was in front of her and she did not stop.
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