Back into the MADness ~ A chronical of Dometris

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Nightstealer, Sep 13, 2013.

  1. So I'm writing a story based on an rp I once tried to run that failed, and the way I'm writing it is that the sequel, if we were to go in chronological order, comes first, and so on and so forth. It's not finished yet, I'm still working on it, and I'm writing it chapter by chapter, but I'd like feedback if you wouldn't mind. it's a new writing style and I'm interested to see what others think of it.


    Chapter 1

    You know how some days you can feel as high as a kite? And then others you feel like someone just kicked your arse off a bridge the size of Mount Everest and you’re constantly falling? Yeah, I’m having one of those. Only this time, I felt like I was on top of four of the damned things, stacked one on top of the other so that you can’t even see the top of the second one. I can’t remember when I felt this low. I feel like if I were to open my mouth to even say a single word I might burst into tears.

    I haven’t spoken a word since the day of the accident, the day that cost my parent’s lives. My lip trembles even at the thought of it. I don’t want to remember. If I remember, I’ll crumble. It’s taken me this long to get myself back together, but for some reason, no matter how hard I try, no words ever escape my lips. My fists clench as I stare at the dull plastic-y fibres of the polyester carpet, knuckles going white with the force. I don’t care how much it hurts to feel the edges of my nails press against my palms, threatening to break the skin. I almost want them to, to see the scarlet droplets add some kind of colour to that dull grey rug, to see something other than the boring lifeless tones of this plain room. There’s nothing much of interest in here, just a few wooden bookshelves drilled into the wall, a metal bedframe with a thin mattress covered in a scratchy grey blanket and a limp pillow, a washed out chest of draws and curtains that I suspect might have once been a cheery yellow but have been bleached in the sun until they look like the weak colour of urine. The only real thing of interest is the painting that hangs above the single plank of wood that serves as the bookshelf.

    The painting itself is by some unknown artist. The signature is a black scrawl of illegible ink, half smudged with paint as if the image was still wet when he/she/it had signed it. It’s not all that interesting really, it’s of some strange market place. Kids run around after animals, chickens duck and weave between legs, cats slink across rooftops as the market criers declare their wares. Of course, none of this actually moves. This is just what I see in it. Personally, I don’t understand what it is about this painting that makes me like it so much, but I do. When I was little and visiting my cousins I used to imagine the market place coming to life before I fell asleep. I know now that this is utter nonsense, but there’s still the thrill of the memory. I used to dream of it too, I could hear the sounds, smell the aromas of the people, the wares, and the docks that you could barely make out at the edge of the painting. I could see the children as they chased that poor dog around the square, hear their laughter as it rang out. It was all so vivid to me. Now as I look at it, all I feel is a hollow sense of despair.

    ‘Abigail, lunch is ready.’ My aunt’s voice breaks my melancholy thoughts as I look up with a bored glance towards the door where she stands, her dark hair pinned back neatly, pale blue sundress covered with a white apron. A single strand of pearls is strung around her neck. She looks as bland and washed out as this room. Everything is tones of grey to me. Even though she wears red lipstick, and has blush on, she just manages to look more drawn, her lips more pursed. I get this mental image of her among those ugly Victorian dolls. That’s what she looks like with that makeup. She would be quite pretty if she let her hair out, used less vibrant tones, but she’s very much an old suburban housewife. I wonder if my uncle makes her wear those ridiculous clothes. It’s very much the typical 60’s housewife, not at all the 21st century. She clears her throat and I nod, standing slowly, not speaking. Seeing this, she turns away and walks down the stairs into the kitchen where the scent of freshly baked bread and an assortment of aromas reach us, me particularly as I follow and my stomach rumbles. I haven’t eaten since last night. I refused breakfast, feeling sick. Despite this my aunt still places a plate of bacon, toast and eggs in front of me.

    I think I ought to take this moment to tell you now that my aunt and uncle are slightly eccentric. Well no, not that. They’re more rather… Living in the 60’s. That’s when their house was built and that’s how they’ve stayed. My cousins managed to escape that particular ailment.. Just. I'm actually pretty surprised that they turned out as normal as they did.

    My thoughts are broken by the rustle of newspaper as my uncle turns the page.
    ‘Morning Agatha.’ He says in a deep voice that resonates with dominance. It’s Abigail. I think to myself but don’t say anything. I’ve long since stopped trying to correct him. He’s been calling me Agatha since I was three years old, so after a while I just decided it was better to let him call me what he wanted. Definitely not worth breaking my silence for. He is looking at me expectantly, as if I might just suddenly talk if he looks at me the right way. It annoys me a little, but I’ve lived with worse irritations than my uncle’s frustration at my lack of speech. I decide to stare back blankly, sliding onto my chair behind the table just as Amanda and Geoffry, the twins, each with blonde hair and hazel coloured eyes, saunter into the kitchen. They eye me with identical looks of contempt and then slip into their spots at the table.

    ‘Morning Daddy.’ Amanda chimes, leaning over to kiss her father on the cheek. My uncle cracks a smile at his children, kissing her forehead. Geoffry greets his father with a less chipper, more manly tone, trying to act older than he is. The twins are actually younger than me at sixteen years old, but they constantly try to hold themselves above me. I’ve grown accustomed to it now, it’s not a huge deal anymore. Back when I could remember how to use my voice I’d shut them up with a few harsh words reminding them of who was in fact the oldest, but now I just shoot a half-hearted glare at them and start picking at the bacon my aunt placed in front of me. Amanda starts gushing about some new shop that’s opening up in the main plaza but no one is really listening to her. My uncle nods and says ‘That’s nice dear.’ He never really understood teenagers, least of all teenage girls. I can see that look of boredom on his face as he scans the paper, never actually looking away from it. I very nearly crack a smug smile at this but I check myself at the last minute when I see Melissa, that is, my aunt, eyeing me very carefully, a warning glance. As you can probably guess, I’m not exactly liked in this house. Instantly I drop my gaze down to my plate and continue to pick at my food, staring very intently at the slight cracks in the surface of the china. I’m trying to figure out who serves bacon and eggs on their best china when they don’t even have company around when Geoffry speaks.

    ‘Trying to read the tea leaves?’ He asks in that annoyingly snide voice of his. I look up and shoot him a withering glare. Before I can even formulate a response in my head, Amanda has chimed in with a loud giggle, hitting her brother in the shoulder. ‘That’d be bacon fat you idiot, not tea leaves.’ He rolls his eyes, pushing her away. ‘Duhh, like I didn’t know that, idiot. You don’t get it. Go back to your fashion magazines and leave the jokes for us comedians.’ I raise an eyebrow at this comment and Geoffrey stares at me, as if daring me to argue. ‘Got something to say, freak?’ He asks snidely. I just look to the ceiling and shake my head, going back to pushing my food around on the plate. Suddenly my Aunt throws down the tea towel she’s wiping her hands with and her voice comes out in sharp, shrill tones.

    ‘For goodness sake Abigail. Don’t you think that’s enough of that ridiculous behaviour? You’re not a two year old. What would you parents think if they saw you acting like this?!’ I glare at her, hot tears in my eyes. I want to shout at her for bringing up my parents in her guilt trip. I think they’d be downright pissed that you would use them to try and guilt me into your perfect moulds! I want to scream. I want to reach out and force her face down on the hotplate that is glowing red. I want to cause her pain greater than what I was feeling. But of course, I don’t do any of these. Instead I push my plate away furiously after glaring at her for a long time, standing up with such a force that it sends my chair flying back and skittering across the tiled floor and the table teeters backwards and forwards a moment. That in itself is a pretty amazing feat. It’s this big solid thing made of oak and thick as a gladiator’s arm. I don’t hang around the kitchen to see their reactions as I hear both my aunt and uncle say my name as I walk out of the room, turning harshly on my heel to march up the stairs to my attic room. Once I’m in there I lock the door, sliding the bolt home so that they can’t get in. They could bang on that thing all day and wouldn’t be able to bust in with anything short of a medieval battering ram. I flop down on the bed, my entire body shaking violently from fury. I’m fighting off tears of frustration and my breath comes in short gasps. Who the hell do they think they are, trying to use my parents’ memory like that. I’ll show them. I thought to myself, staring furiously at the painting on the wall. I don’t know how I would, but I’m sure I’d manage it somehow. My hands tremble with fury as I glower at that painting, my breathing not calming an iota. Looking back on it now, I’m not sure what compelled me to do it. Maybe I was just really furious. Maybe I couldn’t bear to see that thing on the wall again. Either way, I stand up, walk over to the painting and tug it down from the wall. I’m standing there, staring at this painting with absolute hatred, fully intending to rip it to shreds or something, but I can’t do it. I just can’t bring myself to break the frame and destroy it. My anger subsides slowly and I burst into silent tears, sinking to the floor. This just isn’t fair. Why? Why am I here when they are dead? Why couldn’t it be me? My chest heaves and I make a small, strangled sound. It’s the first sound I’ve made in months. My tears fall on the canvas of the painting, making small drumming noises as they fall, one by one. Thump. Thump. Thump. One drop. Two Drops. Three drops. Then there’s the banging on the door.

    ‘Abigail! Open this door immediately!’ Bang. Bang. Bang. I ignore them. Just go away, I think to myself. Go away and leave me alone. I want to die. But they don’t go away. They keep banging on the door, telling me to open the door right this instant. I still ignore them. My tears still fall. Thump. Thump. Thump. Finally the banging stops and I hear them walk downstairs, muttering about how childish I am acting, about how my parents would be ashamed. I don’t care. I hate them. I hate them so much. I hope they get hit by a bus. They don’t understand at all. How can they expect me to lose my parents and just GET OVER IT? It’s not like my goldfish died. I lost my parents, the most important people in the world to me.

    I look back down to the painting in my hands and frown. Had something changed? It seemed that the picture was warping, the paint smudging and slurring. How was that possible? As I watch this slow transformation, a strange heat starts to emanate from the painting, warming at a rapid pace to the point that it burns the palms of my hands and my finger tips and I drop it on the floor. My eyes widen as a strange blue light branches from the centre of the painting, lashing out in long vine-like tendrils. I run for the door, yanking on the bolt to escape. Before I can escape the room they’ve latched onto my wrists, four of them tugging me closer to the painting like a giant squid ready to devour a ship. I open my mouth as the vines of light tug me into the void. A blood curdling scream claws out of my throat as my vision clouds over and I’m absorbed into the brilliant light that surrounds the room.


    The ground is hard beneath me. I groan, my vision blurred as I open my eyes, blinking at the brilliantly bright light. As my sight adjusts I am able to make out the image of the village, the market square from the painting. My senses hone in on my surroundings and I realise why my body aches all over. The chipped cobblestones are lying in piles beneath my body, digging into all the joints and fleshy parts. The colours seem to swim before my eyes and I blink, trying to shake the deliria from my mind. I must be dreaming. I must have fallen asleep in that dreadful room, staring blankly at the floor and counting the plastic fibres of the carpet. It’s the only explanation. I pick myself up off the ground, rolling my shoulders and cracking my neck. Brushing the dirt off of my jeans and hoodie I look around. No one is here, no one of the people from the painting are here. Where is everyone, I wonder. Why am I here, why am I all alone? The buildings around me are crumbling, run down. There are gaping cracks in the ground and I skirt from one side of one to the other side, balancing precariously along the edge for a minute before straightening up and feeling confused as to how I got to this strange place. Looking up I can see thick clouds of grey swarming over, but as I look over to my left I can see beyond the city and out onto a vast field of sunflowers, and the sun shines brilliantly over them, making them glow like gold. It’s beautiful; even I have to admit that. I’m reminded of a story that my father once told me. It was a crazy tale, a tale of a world of insanity, run by a god who kept people as pets and thought it was the most natural thing in the world. It rained skittles and there were people who weren’t all human. It was a crazy bedtime story, but I loved it, and the way he told it made me almost believe he was actually there. This place reminded me very much of that place. Especially the sunflowers. It was always the most important part of the story. He’d tell me how beautifully vibrant they were, and I could imagine them as if I was right there with him, in that fairy tale land. But unlike most fairy tales, it didn’t have a happy ending, not properly. The mad god went crazy, he tried to kill the brave hero, the hero lost his allies, many of them, and almost lost himself to despair. I never heard the rest of the story, my father would always say he’d tell me the end of it some other time. And then they died. I never got to know whether the hero made it out of his despair. Sometimes I like to think that my father was the hero, that he met my mother and they lived happily ever after, but they didn’t, I know that. Even that ending is painful.

    Now as I look around I wonder if this city had a similar painful ending. A city once teeming with life, like in the picture, is now dead, with only the rats to make the shadows swirl and shiver. My footsteps echo on the cobblestones as I walk down a small alley, wondering about the kinds of people that must have lived there. Some of the buildings look like they belong in the Victorian era, and then others look like they came right out of my old street. It’s like someone picked up two different eras and mashed them together with a pile of clay and said ‘Alright, this is how we’re going to do this. Isn’t it brilliant?’ The further I walk the more different building styles I see and I begin to feel light headed. It’s as if I’m in a kaleidoscope of time periods, and my vision swims before my eyes. Looking around I decide to sit down on a set of stairs outside a particularly ravaged house. The stone is cold through my jeans and it gives me goosebumps. That’s not the only bump I have, I think as I gingerly feel the large lump forming on my head where I hit the ground. Suddenly something clamps on my arm and yanks me backwards. I topple over the collapsed wall and land painfully on more stone. What the hell? I think, blinking at the dark abyss around me.

    As my eyes adjust I see a male with ruffled black hair and a dirty face peering carefully at me. ‘Are you mad?’ He hisses and I blink in surprise. Mad? Me? Well yes, I suppose I must be, to be dreaming this so thoroughly. When I don’t respond the boy continues. ‘You can’t just go wandering out in the open like that. You’ll be slaughtered!’ He exclaims, clearly expecting me to speak and explain my actions. But I just sit there, feeling my elbow as twinges of pain shoot through my arm. It really hurts, which surprises me a little. Dreams never feel this real, do they? His piercing green eyes seem to peer into the depths of my soul, as if trying to suss me out. I shoot him a glowering look to make him stop. The boy lets out a ‘Harrumph’ and puts his hands on his hips. ‘What’s the matter, cat got your tongue?’ I just raise an eyebrow and dust myself off as I stand and start to walk around the strange dark place I’ve been pulled into. I can feel the boy’s eyes on my back as I search for something, anything to wake me up. ‘Are you always this social?’ He asks. He’s suddenly a lot nearer to me than I’d first expected, his voice being right behind me. It makes me jump a little and he laughs. He must have snuck up behind me without me noticing. I sigh and shrug, seeing the light that tumbles in from the hole in the floor above and trying to estimate whether I can somehow get up there. He follows my gaze and chuckles, shaking his head. ‘You’ve got no hope of getting back up there. You don’t look nearly skilled enough to climb that.’ He states, as if he knows everything. This just makes me mad and I shoot him a withering glare, pushing up my sleeves. Just you watch me do it, I think defiantly to myself, pushing back my brown hair out of my eyes.

    He watches me as I feel around the wall for a good handhold, my fingers coming across some bricks that jut out, and I begin to hoist myself up. ‘I really wouldn’t do that if I were you.’ He says slowly, watching me as I scrabble in the dark for another hold. The brick comes away in my hand and I fall down again, landing painfully as the breath is pushed from my lungs. Pain rushes through my limbs and tailbone and sudden tears surprise me. Suddenly the stranger is by my side, grabbing my arm and pulling me to my feet, concern flashing in his eyes as I look at him in surprise. ‘I warned you. It’s dangerous. This whole world is dangerous. I don’t know who you are, or why you are wandering around foolishly in these lands, but I can tell you this now, the rate you’re going you’ll be dead in a day.’
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  2. Coming from a person who has to struggle with her attention span on a daily basis... I loved it. I didn't have to fight because you held my attention captive from start to finish. I couldn't believe how easy it was to stay focused. The emotion delivered to the reader and your descriptions are very well-balanced. I find at times that writers go into too much detail and that will make me put the book down right away. The story becomes dry and difficult to keep track of what's happening.
    But as for this one.. Perfect amount of explanation and detail - not too much or too little. The story flows so smoothly. I would love to read some more.
    #2 Dawn, Sep 19, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2013
  3. Night, I have to say I am thoroughly impressed with this read! I love the character and the fact that you used First Person view which I don't think everyone can make interesting is marvelous! Please, please give us more! We were talking about it in chat and we're hopeful for a second chapter soon! - Mid
  4. Thanks so much for the great feedback guys! here's the next part!

    I want to demand to know who the hell he thinks he is, judging me, but I don’t. If my uncle getting my name wrong wasn’t reason enough to break my silence, why on earth would I let some foolish boy get the better of me and force me to speak? Instead I slump back on the ground, sighing and burying my face in my hands. There is silence. I hear the crunching of debris underfoot as he walks beside me, then feel a sharp pain in my arm. I jump, glaring in the darkness to see him pull a clawed hand back, laughter bubbling up in his throat. ‘Oh you should have seen your face! You jumped like a little school girl!’ My glare becomes deadlier as I rub my arm and he calms himself. ‘What are you anyway? You’re not from here, that’s for sure. No one around here would be stupid enough to parade around in the open. Not to mention that flashy entrance. Talk about extravagant. You gave the wildlings a damned beacon to your arrival. Might as well have a neon sign over the place. Night will be coming soon. We should move.’ I hear a terrible sound from above ground, a sound that is so horrid that my skin crawls and I freeze up in terror. Even the strange boy in front of me looks frightened. ‘See? We’ve spent too long chatting, we’ve got to move.’ Without warning he’s grabbing my hand and pushing me through a hole in the wall that I hadn’t noticed before. It smells damp, earthy, and he’s urging me to hurry in whispered tones as I feel my way through the tunnel. ‘Turn left.’ He whispers, and I do as I’m told. Small blue objects glow vibrantly on the walls of the tunnel and I accidently put my hand on one and nearly scream. It feels cold and slimy beneath my palm, and it squelches loudly. I don’t get a chance to freak out however, as he’s pushing me forward again. ‘Hurry up! We’ve got to get as far away from the market place as we can!’

    I wipe the slug off my hand as we’re crawling through the space, shuddering as I feel the slime coat the rest of my hand. I almost want to be sick. But this stranger, who hasn’t even told me his name yet, is still urging me on, and I can still hear those terrible cries in the night as the tunnel gets darker, and the strange slug-like objects glow brighter to compensate. Suddenly the tunnel widens and I find myself on all fours at the top of some stairs. Before I can stand however, the boy behind me is shoving me along and we tumble down. AS if my body isn’t already bruised enough, I think as I groan, opening my eyes to see the boy lying on top of me, looking pretty battered himself. For a moment there our eyes are locked on each other’s, then I’m shoving him off of me and getting to my feet, dusting myself off for the third time today. He grunts, picking himself up off the ground. ‘Well that wasn’t very nice, you could have warned me before you booted me in the gut like that.’ He grumbles, and I just roll my eyes, examining the brighter area. It seems to be a cavern of sorts, and the faint smell of sewerage fills my nostrils, making me crinkle my nose in disgust. He laughs. ‘Come on, this way!’ I fall into step behind him as he opens a large metal door, treks through another dark tunnel and through another doorway until there’s a solid brick wall in front of us. Now I hate to be the ‘glass-half-empty’ kind of girl, but we’ve definitely hit a dead end here. The boy is nuts, clearly. He’s gone and led me all around a bunch of tunnels and now we’re lost. Unless he did it just to kill me. But that’s a little too extreme, even for me. He examines the wall carefully and as he does and grin spreads across his chiselled features. ‘Aha! Gotcha!’ His hand shoots through the wall. I shit you not. It goes right through. The wall doesn’t even waver. It’s like it wasn’t even there in the first place. Then it hits me, as his arm comes back, holding a small vial of something. Of course it isn’t real. The wall must be a hologram or something, some kind of projector must be making it look like it’s there. To test my theory I reach out a hand, expecting it to pass straight through, but my fingers meet cold, damp stone. The smell of mildew lingers on my fingertips. How is that possible? The strange boy pushes the vial into my hand. ‘You’ll need to drink this if you want to pass. You’re new to the realm, so you haven’t been exposed to the same things as us locals.’ He explains and I just shoot him a disbelieving look. He’s got to be high. It’s the only explanation. When I don’t make a move to drink from the bottle of stuff that’s probably poisonous anyway, he shrugs. ‘Suit yourself then.’ Then he’s passing through the wall completely and I’m left by myself, staring at the place where he disappeared.

    The glass of the vial seems to be humming, all but vibrating with some unseen power. It feels like the bottle will pop itself open, if it were to continue vibrating at such a speed. The sound of the humming gets louder, demanding my attention. I’m starting to feel a little like Alice down the rabbit hole, thrown into a world of chaos and confusion, and being told to drink something. It’s ridiculous. Then it hits me. What if this is all just some elaborate hoax? What if Amanda and Geoffry are behind this? Well, maybe not Amanda, she’d be too busy in her fashion magazines, but I can definitely see Geoffry pulling this stunt. I begin to feel angry, fully expecting them to jump out and laugh at having got me going, but as I stand in the cold dank area, I am clearly all alone. All I can hear is the echoing drips as they fall somewhere in the darkness. I shiver as the cold seeps into my bones and my grip tightens on the little glass vial. Sighing in defeat I uncork the tube and swallow the contents, waiting for the poison or whatever it is to kick in. It tastes strange, and incredibly sweet. I can’t pick out any one flavour, but I can tell there are many in it. A strange tingling sensation floods my body, like there are a hundred tiny insects crawling over my skin and I shake my limbs to get them off. As I look at the wall it seems to shimmer, fading in and out of existence almost and I can see a brightly lit passage beyond, with a large white door at the end. Hesitantly, I step forward and feel warmth flood my body like a wash of warm water. I almost expect the boy to be waiting for me, but he isn’t. I’m all alone in the brilliantly lit corridor. The only exit is the door at the end. I hesitate as my fingers wrap around the brass handle, holding my breath. I push the door open and my senses are overloaded with warmth, brilliant lights and the sound of voices which suddenly hush when I enter. ‘I’m glad you decided to join us.’ He says, his smile back again as I step through.

    ~Chapter 2 Begins here~
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