Broken Dreams

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Humming pleasantly to herself, Mercury set the book she was looking at down on the table. It was nearly time to draw again to herself a batch of recruits in her fight against them demons, and in a rather overly cheerful way, she felt the bloodlust creeping up on her.

She stepped elegantly away from the dusty tomes, tracing her lip with one of her fingernails as she looked out the door to the city. Her house, which had belonged to an old woman who raised her, was still covered in dust perhaps from the woman's childhood, thus holding a rather uniquely ancient smell.

Placing one bare foot with peachy pale skin out into the dirt, Mercury used the pendant given to her by the woman to compel those who had lost their souls to her. Maybe, just maybe, this batch would not prove so weak, so faithless.

And if they did, she would just have to start from this step again, wouldn't she? Until they got it right...​
Serene and elegant, the petite young woman stood in the market square looking down her nose at the wares in various stalls and stands. Dressed in abundant finery, her clothing may as well of suggested she was a queen amongst peasants. Ivory silks, silver threading, and a big plush cloak with fur trim. The raven-haired woman looked out of place.

And very annoyed.

Nikella Candereu was bored out of her pretty little head. This dirty little village was not where she came from - thank the gods - but it reminded her so much of the 'quaint' town, she was tempted to take her horse and gallop right back out. Alas, the beast needed his rest and she required something shiny. Maybe there was a bauble or piece of jewelry that might nearly be as beautiful as she was herself.

Pausing in the middle of the street, her eyes wandered down the way where a house caught her sights. It was no grand mansion, hardly worth her attention. And yet... something was compelling her to go take a look. With a scoff, Nikella headed in that direction.
Rukhai moved through the busy street, her small frame buffeted by the crowd as she battled to move towards the lime of stalls that signified the start of the small market at the center of town. In her hand was a small bag, empty for now, and the other was clasped around her most treasured possession, a small silver locket, very plain to look at but she never let it out of her sight.

She finally reached the stalls and her mouth watered at the sight of the confectionery she could never afford, she lingered a moment tempted to buy just one sweet bun, but that would be foolish and she moved past into the busy market square and soon her bag was filled with a few vegetables and a new lock for the door.

After the shopping has done she went to her favorite place in the world, the park over by the mansion. In a quiet corner she rested on her favorite bench, just like she did everyday, she had nothing more to do and she could spend as long as she wanted, lost in thought, her bag at her side, locked tightly clasped it her hand. This is where she spent most of her time.

With a frown, Valter dipped his head slightly in the hood of his patched and worn cloak, a dusty gray color and patched with expert care. He kept his eyes on his feet, trying not to look up, trying not to seem suspicious. All the while, he fought sinking to his knees, his head in his hands, as the haunting lullaby of his wife's voice called to him from the shadows in his mind. Only, they weren't just memories anymore. A ghostly image stalked him silently, her fingers transparent and fragile in the light of day, yet still she crept down the streets.

You wanted this, you fool, you wanted this. As he wandered back to his small house he, and her, he thought bitterly, had built, he felt an urge to take the long way around this time, heading inevitably towards an old house near the edge of the town. He glanced up at it, caught a shimmer of emerald, and ducked his head back down. As he shuffled forwards, he bumped into someone by accident. That unto itself was peculiar, he had never seen anyone travel this way before, this area was usually quite empty.

Looking up, Valter coughed slightly, knowing his former charm had mostly been lost with his vitality but his gaunt and emaciated form was hardly visible beneath the cloak. He knew he had always had a talent, with women especially. Seeing her, though, he wasn't so sure. She looked pampered, the kind who got everything she wanted. Maybe the local lord's offspring out for a day among the commoners, he thought derisively.

"My apologies, madame..."
There was a soft oomph! as some fool nearly knocked her to the ground! Nikella made a great show of dusting herself off (though she had never fallen, nor had the impact done more than nudge her) and casting a disapproving scowl at the one who dared to assault her.

"Your apologies indeed. One should watch where he is walking." Rubbing her arm with thin porcelain fingers, Nikella was certain he probably bruised her delicate skin. The man was practically draped in his cloak, with his face hidden from her view. How was she supposed to stare him down until he withered away?

Scoffing quietly to herself, Nikella deemed it wasn't worthy. Instead, she motioned a graceful hand towards the large house in the near distance. "For your clumsiness, I insist you tell me of that building. It has caught my attention and I wish to know what is there."
[bg=#000000]There was so much fun to be had for Erion today. Running around cloaked from place to place not letting the sunlight through was just many of the trials he had to suffer from. Rather than curse the power he actually took pride in the fact that he could walk around in the daylight. For him sleep was not a concern as he only needed a few hours worth when he did. Venturing through the town everything he saw was quite common place. There were vendors trying to market cheap goodies, a woman sweeping the dust from her home, even the children were laughing and having fun. To Erion, they were all just targets for his next meal. Nothing was quite as delicious as a young woman's blood and he was on a search for just that.

For a brief moment an event caught his eye, two individuals had crashed into each other on the street. It was odd as the flow seemed so easy around here. He was about to go check it out when a strange feeling over took him. Something in the air told him to head toward the west and so he followed, unaware of what exactly was attracting his attention.

Following up his feelings he came across a girl down a rather deserted alley. He had to question himself as to who was the bigger threat. In the end he settled on the fact that his powers were enough to take on the likes of a girl and proceeded to follow. He was definitely going to try to get his fill for the day on this one.
The silent girl in the park looked around, the positions of the shadows had changed, it was time to go home. She slipped her locket under her dress and picked up her bag before heading away from the road, there was a alley that lead behind the mansion and it was shorter and less crowded than the road. She could see another figure ahead of her but with the weight of her bag couldn't catch up, there was someone else too, in a large cloak at the opposite end of the alleyway, Rakhai shivered when she saw the figure but continued walking, he might be a traveler from far away, somewhere hot.
Lola walked in the alley, not sure what to do. She never needed to go down to the marketplace anymore, but sometimes she liked to do it to just remember how it felt. All the sights and sounds and smells...That she didn't need. "I suppose I could just go to the library...There may be a book I haven't read." She thought, and was about to go that way when something started almost pulling her toward the west, the way she was originally going. Lola took this as a subconscious need for something that way and walked on.
"M'sorry, ma'am," Valter repeated again, softly lilting. Valter tried to smile, but ineffectively. "They say an old witch used to live there, powerful as night and as malevolent as any foul beast. She died, and left a little girl to look over the house for her, so I heard."

Valter gazed at the house, walking towards it almost as though in a trance. Mercury spotted him, a woman not far behind, and her delicate-lipped mouth formed a luxuriant smile. Things were going just right, just right indeed.
Rakhai felt something. Like a pull towards the street. It was like an overwhelming need to get somewhere without knowing why, and before it registered she obeyed. Still carrying her bag she moved out of the alley the way she had come and crossed the park and turned into the street. She had never been down this street before but had heard the stories of the strange woman who had lived there, she continued on irresistibly drawn, her hand clasped around her locket.
Nicholai stood at the edge of the market place. She had decided to be a bit more careful today. She didn't want anything to go wrong...and she certainly didn't want any more innocent people to get hurt.

She pulled her hood up over her head and inhaled sharply as she took her first step into the crowded market. Everything was fine so far. Not too much irritance here. Nicholai felt she was going to be able to make it through today. Yesterday she'd lost control and set fire to an arrogant man's house. As a result nearby houses caught fire too. Some innocent people were hurt but no one had died at least.

Just as Nicholai felt herself brighten at the prospects of a good day she felt a harsh shoulder ram into her. An ogre of a man barked at her to step aside. Nicholai's nose twitched into a snarl as she spat back at him.

"Watch where you're going you ape!"

The man managed to ignore her and find a path around her. Nicholai could feel herself growing warmer...

Mercury smiled into the blaze of sunlight as she caught sight of yet another girl walking in gentle strides towards her house. She compelled for more, a harder surge, all those in the area with contracted souls would feel the burn on their inner spirit.

"Come to me."

She grinned a beacon of shining light in the town. She would defeat the demons this time, she thought with excitement. Centuries of being bested because of foolish human weakness would be over. These would be her most privileged pawns, her golden children as of yet...

But then again, hadn't she said that about each new batch?

In a soft, gauzy robe of fresh green, Mercury stood at the door, her arms outstretched and a soft tinkling voice, ephemeral as though they had all imagined it...
"Come to me, my beloved children, twisted, heartless, and lovely."
Nikella didn't like this feeling. Something tugging on her as if she were being forced to move along like she were a puppet in a show. As she glanced around, it seemed others too were feeling that presence while the rest of the village didn't even pass this oddness a second look.

Not being one to wait for events to happen to her, Nikella picked up her skirts and marched towards the house. She brushed by others that were aimlessly inching closer like mindless zombies, and stopped only when she was paces away from the strange looking woman standing at the doorway of the House.

"You called?" Nikella commented with a tone of annoyance. Called was the right word for it. That woman was drawing them there, and Nikella had learned from past experience that it could not bode well.

"I demand to know what you are up to, woman. I have no patience for spellcasters and pullers of destiny."
Nicholai calmed herself and headed onward into the marketplace. She had no destination in mind but her feet took her to a very distinct place. She walked with her head low and nearly bumped into another pedestrian. She looked up at the forlorn looking gentlemen. He seemed tired from lack of sleep or maybe bad dreams. In the back of her mind Nicholai recalled the name Erion. She'd crossed his path once or twice here in the city but they'd never met. In a market such as this one it was difficult not to recognize the pedestrians she saw everyday.

Nicholai's short recognition of the man passed and she moved onward to the petite house where the two women stood. She lingered back and listened to another confused woman harshly question the one in the doorway.

Mercury smiled beatifically at the woman before gazing out at the others.

"I would hate to need to repeat myself."

A thunderous throbbing pulsed in the ears of all she had been calling to, their eardrums nearly bursting before she relented.



Valter nearly hit his knees with the pulse that sounded within his own head. He could feel, as though shackles were attached to his limbs, a tug at his body so powerful, he felt as though he would be torn into pieces if he did not answer the call.

Not many paces behind him came a small girl from an alley, looking frightened and confused. A dark man approached close behind her, all tugged in the same direction, the house with the ethereal woman standing before it.

"What do you want from me...?" he questioned, voice hoarse with pain.

"Your help, insolent child."
Rakhai had dropped her bag when the pain washed over her. She fell to her knees with a small gasp and it was a second of two before she struggled to her feet and moved towards the house. It seemed to the the only way to lessen the pain. Her pace quickened as the pain lessened and soon she was in front of the house with the strange lady, and the others. "Why...... are... you.... doing … this?" She gasped between deep breaths.
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