Finding Our Way: Pray4me x Izurich

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  1. "Lights out!"

    "Lights out!"

    "Hey! Get home! It's lights out!"

    The guards walked the residential corridors, the butt of their guns dragging and banging along each heavy door of the citizens of Horizon Tower City. The small group of teenagers ran from the one guard who shouted at them, turning a sharp left and into their families' small apartments.

    Horizon Tower City was a thirty story tall, octagon shaped tower located on exiled grounds. It stood in the center of a valley with two large mountainous ranges way above sea level. From afar, Horizon Tower City looked like a giant, abandoned military fort tower with large square openings on each floor that were positioned with cannons and the top floors with catapults. Hanging high at the very top of the tower was the Horizon Tower City's flag, a red flag with a black image of a dragon hybrid creature.

    Inside, Horizon Tower City was split off by floors with the most bottom floors for merchants, the middle for schooling, and the top for residents. Every morning and night, the light-bearers would light the candle lanterns and blow them out on curfew.

    On the 21st floor was a small family consisted of an elderly and their adopted daughter. They had a very charming apartment, two rooms with a large common room that had the kitchen, and off to the side was the small closet bathroom. They were considered one of the better off families in all of the tower as their apartment was modestly furnished and they already had a supple of food. Off in their room, the elderly couple were preparing for bed as one blew out the candle of their lantern and they other settling into bed.

    In the other room was their child, who should be getting ready as well. But, there was a slight distraction as her bedroom had a window that faced one of the large mountain ranges. This particular mountain seemed to glow a soft blue aura every nightfall that no one could explain. Her bookshelves were stacked with books about the mountains and the history of their tower city.

    There was a final shout before the entire tower went completely dark for curfew. For about two hours, the tower was silent as most were settled into bed. Except, for one little girl.

    At the door, there was an extremely soft drumming of fingers and a very hushed voice.

    "Hum hum...El you there?" she asked. "El??"
    #1 MUSΞ, Jun 18, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2015
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  2. As night fell, gone was the sun along with his blinding light and scorching rays, came the moon with her benevolent gentle glow mingling with the cool night breeze. In one of the Tower City's many corridors, particularly at the 21st floor, was one fancy - for Horizon's standards - apartment occupied by Edward and Karen Moongazer, a loving pair of elderly husband and wife who was blessed with true love, but alas no child of their own, along with their beloved adopted daughter, Ellie, whom they found left on their doorsteps ten years ago. The two raised El as their own daughter, the albino girl grew up healthy and was well on her way to be a charming young woman, but of course, like all children, she had her perks which was curiosity, but El's was extremely even by her age's standards. The white-haired girl often snuck away from her apartment, often at night, through various creative ways that Edward and Karen never found out, the guards never found her and El never told them how, one thing for sure, she always returned by sunrise. One too many times it happened, her adopted parents relented, letting her do as she wished as long as she didn't cause problems for the City and always return to them.

    The bright ethereal light shining from the mountain every night signalled that her daily exploring time was approaching, it was a soft glow, not bright like the sun. The little girl grinned as she peeked from the window, the tower had gone dark and silent, Papa and Mama were sound asleep, it was time for her to go. El jumped down from her bed, long white hair trailing behind her then cascading down her back like soft strings of silk, the child checked her bag, filled with her feather pen, ink bottles, and rolled-up parchments, along with some snacks. She nodded to herself, she was ready to go. How would she leave the tower one may ask? Well... you see, El was a rather peculiar child, she had a lot of friends, friends who could help her in need, not human friends, no... they were rather boring. "Kou, I'm set~" She said, her haunting voice echoing in her room as an icy blue orb of light slowly manifested beside her, it moved around her excitedly then rested on her shoulder, a Fae creature whom El befriended in one of her early outings. Kou sprinkled some of its dusts on El then moved to her cupped hands, "Where do you think we should go today?" She asked excitedly, the orb twirled around in her hand, "Oh, the ruins? Well, I never been inside before, but it looks fun!" Kou moved to rest on the girl's right shoulder as she moved to the window.

    That was when the door to her room was knocked, faint, then came a barely audible voice, asking about her. "Hn?" El cocked her head as she looked at Kou, the Fae shrugged, "Who might it be? I should go check," Perhaps it was a new friend wanting to befriend her, oh how exciting! Just to be safe, Kou disappeared from view but still kept watch on its companion. The albino shuffled her feet to the door, then with all her childish innocence and naivette, opened the door, "Yes~?"
  3. Through the darkness of the tower, the girl smiled, revealing her single missing front tooth.

    "Heh, you don't remember me El? It's me, Orchid," she said. "We went 'sploring together a few months ago!"

    Orchid was one of the dozens of eight year girls that occupied the child workers orphanage around the 18th floor. At Horizon Tower City, it was common for families to surrender their children, especially little girls as it was mandatory for men to join the military at age 15. Many young teen moms didn't want to raise a child on their own, even with the help of their families. There were a few single teen moms who matured and decided to take back their surrendered child, but most decided to start a new family.

    Orchid was well-known throughout the orphanage as being a boyish girl who refused to wear dresses. She kept her auburn hair short, wore boy clothes, and always had some sort of trinket in her pocket.

    "Your family got new stuff? Nice," Orchid said as she stuck her head inside the apartment. "Anyway, what'cha gonna do tonight El? You wanna go 'sploring again?"

    She turned her head right and then left, always on alert for any of the night guards on patrol. Orchid had one of the best records for never getting caught out on curfew as she knew all the ins and outs of the tower city.

    "Come on, me and a few orphans carved out a small hole on the third floor near the bread shop. Old meany Tomas didn't even notice us behind his lil shop. Come, come!"

    Orchid giggled quietly as she began her walk down the corridor and to the stone staircase at the center of each floor. Her tiny feet shuffled against the stone flooring, toes gripping each gray, rough stone.

    "But keep quiet though!" she said in a high hush. "There is much more guards than usual!"
  4. "Oh..." A rather unusual reaction came from the albino, unlike most other children who became excited at the prospect of playing together with others, El wasn't so enthusiastic. She was happy that she got friends of course, but... there was just this feeling of emptiness when she socialize with her fellow humans, they couldn't do what her 'friends on the other side' could do. The fact that she forgot about Orchid already was a good enough signal already, still, being a kind and caring girl she was, El simply gave the redhead a giggle, "S-sorry, hehe, I uh... kinda forgot, but I remember now!" She said excitedly, El's voice was distinctively known among the residents here, sweet yet... there was this otherworldly eeriness coating every word she spoke. Children, like Orchid, didn't mind it after a while, but adults became uneased and some of them avoid her for this reason, her white long hair and red eyes only added to her 'creepiness'. Well, El wasn't too worried about that, she had lots of other friends to play with, like Kou... and ah well, Orchid.

    "Uhm... yeah, I got a few new books," El looked back as Orchid stuck her head inside the apartment, her ruby eyes idly gazing at the direction of her room, she was this close to exploring together with Kou when Orchid arrived. "Sure..." El nodded slowly, her fingers fidgeting as she followed the younger tomboy. To be honest, this method of sneaking out like little mice was boring, El didn't want to hide in dark corners, it made her feel like a one of those creepy crawlies insect, er, cockroaches. She wanted to fly, literally, as Kou's faerie dust granted her temporary flight, she was actually going to jump out of the window, soaring in the night sky together with. A sigh left her lips as she felt Kou's presence waning away, the Fae seemed bumped that El chose the human girl instead of it, El hoped it'd forgive her later. "Coming, Orcy..." The albino mumbled under her breath.

    With Orchid's expert guidance, they made their way to the third floor, to Cranky Old Coot Thomas' bread shop, delicious breads, but infamous owner. El had only seen him a few times and from what she had seen, Thomas didn't like people... kinda like El really, but not as extreme as Thomas. "Mmmh..." El simply pouted as she followed behind her friend, this was booooring. She barely fought back a yawn, but oh well, at least she still got to explore.
  5. Orchid stopped at the bakery at a small split in the wall that joined the bakery to the shop next door.

    "You see, we sneaked in there and..." Orchid began. She scrunched her face as tried her best to see El through the dark. "You don't sound too excited..."

    She sighed softly, placing her hands on her hips. Orchid thought El would be excited about an easier way to sneak around the tower and a spot to actually go to the outside world. No one, except the military and the few farmers, ever left the tower city. There was a large park that was located on the ground floor that had a small lake, plenty of trees, and a garden that changed every year for those who wanted to feel fresh vegetation on their skin. But, it was forbidden for most to leave the tower.

    "I thought you would like this 'cause you have all those books about outside and things like that," Orchid said lowly. "It was 'spose to be a secret with us orphans, but I thought I would let you in on it."

    There was a small, dim moonlight flooding through the hole in the wall the orphans chiseled away. Orchid shrugged and let a low sigh.

    "I'mma go. If you still wanna see it, you just gotta shuffle through this split and squirm your way out. I think we got it big enough to fit us," Orchid instructed.

    And, hanging her head down, Orchid slowly wandered off down the hall and up the stairs. She didn't bother to look for the night guards as she didn't mind being sent back to the orphanage and punished after feeling a bit let down.

    A wind wrapped around the tower, making it creek. A high pitched whistled escaped through the crack in the wall, trying to lure whoever is around to the outside world.
  6. El tried to at least show an amount of delight when Orchid showed her how to sneak out of the tower through the small opening on the walls, but being the imaginative girl she was, with mythical friends to boot, her eyes began to droop in boredom. Of course, anyone who was not a simpleton could notice this, the red-eyed young girl fidgeted with her white dress and looked down on the ground, "I uh... I'm..." She didn't know what to say to make Orchid feel better, lying would only make things worse, it's better to let it be, whatever happens happen. "Yeah, thank you, Orcy..." El said, giving the young girl a small smile to comfort her. "Stay safe." Ellie didn't try to stop Orchid from returning home, she felt bad for it, but deep inside, El didn't want to explore with her. The last time she did, it was rather uneventful and the tomboy couldn't see her other friends, making it rather awkward for the albino.

    Once the tomboy was out of sight and earshot, El turned her head back at the opening, the moonlight and winds were enticing her, they were inviting her to the wonders beyond these walls. Taking a deep breath, El took a step forward and squirmed her way through the hole. "Ehehe~" She quickly stood up then dashed away from the Tower City, traversing through nature, she bore no footwear as she loved the grass caressing her soles. "Kou?" She called out for the Fae, but it seemed it had gone home already, its faerie dusts were still left on her body, sparkling with an ethereal glow that few could see. "I think... it'll still work, right?" She mumbled to herself as El ran faster, faster, until her feet started to feel lighter, lighter... "Hahaha!" then she jumped up, brushing past leaves and leaving the forest top. It worked. Her long white hair was like masts as the girl sailed through the night sky, the moon illuminating her form, giving the image of an angel ascending to heaven or... a phantom child searching for victims, it's a matter of perspective.

    The girl twirled in the sky as she headed to the mountains just West of Horizon Tower, it was there she found the ruins inside a huge cave with Kou, she didn't get the chance to explore as the sun was almost up back then, but this time, she'll investigate every nook and cranny inside. Speaking about the sun, El disliked - no, hated - the sun, its scorching rays burned her skin and blinding her eyes, she didn't understand why other people seemed to have less problems with the giant glowing blob of terror, perhaps it was just her... she remembered Doctor Ryan - whom Papa took her for examination once in a while - saying something about her condition... albedo, albini... something like that. El shrugged, no use thinking about it, not when there's so much more things to do at night! "Almost ther-..." She cut herself off, a tiny little problem just occured all of the sudden, Kou's faerie dusts lost their power, bollocks. The cruel mistress known as 'Gravity' immediately took this chance to pull the poor child back onto earth.

    "Aaaaaaaaaaaah!" El screamed with all her might, hugging herself as she plummeted to the ground, oh no, she was going to die... well, at least she'd find out what would happen after someone died, it's going to be so excitin- she abruptly stopped in mid-air - "Huh?" The child slowly opened her eyes, blinking twice as her mind took in what just happened, there she was, floating in mid-air, held up by an invisible force, "Did I die...?" Perhaps she did really die and became a ghost, well now she could haunt people, it's going to be so excitin- Kou appeared in front of her face, along with others of his kin surrounding El's body. "Kou?! Ah... I was... uuh... d-did you?" The Fae bobbed its form up and down as if nodding, confirming that it heard her plight and decided to help, along with its friends. "Aaaah..." El sighed in relief, then cupped Kou in her hands, "Thank you, thank you, you're the best!" She giggled as the Faes put her down just in front of the cavern's mouth.

    "Bye-bye~" El waved her hand as the creatures returned to their homes, except for the loyal Kou, "I uh... I'm sorry for earlier..." El fidgeted with her dress, blushing vividly due to her very fair skin, Kou seemed to understand as it placed itself on El's shoulder, sprinkling some of its dust again, "Do you want to explore together?" Kou bobbed up and down, "Let's go then!" And thus, the two enter the cave, what manner of trinkets she'd find inside? It's going to be so exciting!
  7. Inside, the cave was a wonderland of blueish rocks shimmering with white speckles. There were stones of all textures, from ultra smooth, to sharp and crackly, to swirls that towered from the ground to the ceiling. As El walked, the cave entrance became narrower and narrower, a cold chill always constant inside, and the ground making "squishy" sounds with each step.

    Once through the entrance, the cave opened to a hallway chiseled away by the early settlers of the land. Deep pockets were carved into the walls to place lit torches, the ceiling was etched with extravagant patterns, and every few ways the hall way opened to random rooms that had built in seating and tables. The hall and rooms still looked perfect as if they were still in use. El was mostly likely familiar with this part of the cave as she explored before during her last venture out.

    Beyond the hall and over a crumble of boulders that collapsed from their own weight, was an archway that opened to a very narrowing pathway. Here, the walls were completely smooth to the touch and had the coloring of an opal stone. It was pitch dark and painfully silent with the only light the eye can focus on was a small glow at the very end. The ground here was titled from the same opal-like stone with any footsteps being echoed loudly, breaking the crippling silence.

    At the end of the passageway, through a very low bearing doorway, opened to the heart of the cave system. A massive blue cave, almost as high as the current Horizon City Tower and just as wide, displayed thousands of headstones drilled into a marble like cube into the dirt ground. These marble cubes tiled throughout the dome shaped cave, each headstone having a message written in a very ancient, unused language. From above, a small circular window was shaped out to allow as much light as possible to enter into the ancient burial ground.

    But, what took up majority of the cave, standing proudly over the grave sites at the far end of the cave, was a creature of a human and dragon hybrid statue. The dragon tail, carefully detailed to display each and every glittery scale, wrapped around the entire room, looping over itself and arching high, until the hook tail dug into the wall right beside the human body. The main section, the male torso hung low to the ground, the long human arms attached to dragon-like hands, dug into the ground to hold him up as his massive angelic wings curved upwards on his back, the flight feathers spread and the very tip attaching to the ceiling of the cave to hold the statue in place.

    On closer exception, the face of the creature was covered by its hair. The only exposure was his lower face, perfectly carved with a sharp nose, thin cheeks, and its mouth open to show off its fangs. One could look inside its mouth and see that the inside of the statue was hollow and somehow a wind brewing inside. The creature, after every few minutes, would let out an eerie, low howl.

    The creature seemed to be tired and stressed as it watched over the burial grounds for who knows how long.
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  8. During their last trip, El and Kou barely scratched the wonders hidden inside this particular cave. She already saw the mesmerizing shimmering rocks with their various shapes and sizes, almost as if someone deliberately carved them this way. Still, it didn't make it any less interesting, her ruby irises reflected the glow as she leisurely ventured deeper into the cavern, her mouth gawking and head craned upwards. As she went deeper, one could notice that El didn't see affected by the decreasing temperature, where any other child would be shivering, she looked fine indeed, even enjoying the chill caressing her skin. "Aaah~" She sighed in contentment, much better than burning under the sun's reign. Kou seemed to agree with her, being a Fae of the ice element. "Squish, squish, squish~" El deliberately timed her steps, having fun with the amusing sound the ground made every time her feet made contact. Soon, they arrived at the hallway.

    Kou's glowing nature provided light for the girl as she re-explored the abandoned settlement, "Hello~?" She called out, but only her own echo replied to her, it seemed this place was truly empty after all. Strange though, the crisp condition of this cavernous abode suggested someone took care of it, so suspiciously clean and maintained, even a child like El could notice. "Hmmh, Kou, maybe you can see someone I can't?" She slightly tilted her head, the Fae answered with a slight shake of its spherical body, "No, huh? Only the two of us... strange, there must be something more here." She traversed deeper, ignoring the rooms she saw before and came before a pile of crumbled boulders, she didn't notice it before, but there seemed to be a pathway beyond these rocks. "Maybe I could..." El pondered as she approached the rubble, her red eyes roaming it until she found a small hole in the corner, just big enough for her to fit in. Naturally, she let her curiosity drive her actions, squeezing her slim body through the hole with Kou leading slightly ahead.

    "Hwah..." She stood up and dusted off her dress, she looked up towards the archway then to the new corridor, she had never been here before. The girl checked her bag as she took out a piece of bread, munching it to gain some energy as she ventured forward. The path gradually narrowed and there was a sense of foreboding pressing against her conscience, it seemed the Fae felt it too as Kou became more and more agitated. "What's the matter, Kou?" El inquired, trying to ignore the weight on her soul, "Leave? Why? Uhm, we just got here..." She was a bit disappointed that Kou even suggested such things, but it seemed the Fae's decision was final, it was going back, no matter what, "Awww... Kou, come on..." She had to make a decision. After a few moments of contemplation, El sighed as she smiled at her friend, "Alright, good bye and stay safe." She took a step forward as Kou suddenly floated to her face, "Don't? No, Kou, I'm going there. Don't worry, I'll be alright." She rubbed her friend, then continued on her way. Kou watched as the stubborn girl ignored its warning for a few seconds before it vanished, returning to its home.


    "Ha... ha..." El panted as her feet carried her further through the pathway, her right hand dragging against the smooth opal walls. Her head felt heavy and she was hearing whispers coming from everywhere. Without Kou, she could only depend on the small speck of glow ahead, fear gripped at her heart, but she was dead-set on satisfying her hunger for knowledge. "Kih..." El gritted her teeth as she brought one hand to her chest, then with a determined gaze, she forced herself to quicken her pace, her steps echoing against the opal cavern floor.

    She didn't know how much time passed, but she succeeded in reaching the end. "W-wow..." The view was breathtaking, an extremely massive azure cave rivalling Horizon itself with headstones on marble cubes decorating the floor, a ceiling window for natural lighting, but most of all, the giant statue of an unknown creature towered before her. El stood there in awe as ruby pupils roamed the half-man, half-dragon, statue, it was unlike any other creature she had seen before. From her vast knowledge of fairy tales and legends, El could see the statue was a combination of Shen Long the Dragon God's body, Samael the Seraphim's wings, and Hercules' head and torso; it was as if the figures from those legends were merged into this single massive work of art.

    El immediately took out her parchment, ink bottle, and pen, she must document this. Before she could begin drawing however, the creature let out an eerie howl, no, she was not mistaken, the low voice was coming from the statue. "..." For some odd reason, she felt comfort... the eerie nature of the howl was similar to her own voice in some way. "Ah..." El became tranced as her belongings fell to the ground, the ink bottle shattering. She didn't give a care as her pupils half-closed, her feet slowly carrying her forward to the statue. Her body soon left the ground as her form floated upwards, her body glowing in reddish-white light, until she was eye-level with the statue's human body.


    Her peculiar birthmark at the back of her neck, the one with the shape of a white rose crest, glowed. Her right hand reached out as she caressed the statue's hair-covered face, "Bel... Sarra... Usar..." She whispered, touching her forehead with his.
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  9. A warm sensation slowly began to form on the statue's forehead from El's, the warmness traveling down it's body, over it's wings, and winding along the long tail and to the very tip of the hook. Another low howl escaped the creature, as if replying to El, the low boom of it echoing throughout the cave.

    A soft sound of crackling interrupted the echo. A trail of dirt and dust trickled from the hook that stuck into the rocky ceiling, the trail of dirt growing fuller and faster as a sand pile formed on the floor. Small pebbles turned into palm sized rocks, rolling down from above and smashing onto the ground. The hook of the tail began to split from the ceiling, the crackling becoming louder and louder, until it tore from the ceiling and plummeted down.

    The explosive dust only cleared quickly by a whip of the pearly white, glossy dragon tail. Like a snake, it curled and snapped, more and more of the rocky exterior of the statue giving way to the creature that was hiding beneath. The creature gave an ear-piercing howl as the entire cavern began to shutter. The atmosphere suddenly felt tight and heavy, the piercing howl causing an almost dizzy feeling to anyone around, as the beautiful wings began to slowly peel themselves from the cave's grasp. The stone exterior cracked, shuddered, and twitched, prying itself loose until it too snapped from the cave.

    With nothing to support it's weight, the human torso of the creature fell to the ground. As it did, the arms that propped it up split off its exterior, revealing long white, scaly arms that gave way to the sudden weight. With it, the human torso slammed do the ground, stone shattering delicately like glass, to show the creature in all it's glory, Bel-Sarra-Usar.

    He laid motionless on the ground, his whipping tail settling down and resting tiredly on the ground. Deep, raspy breaths replaced for former howls as he took in urgent breaths. His feathery wings shook any excess dust off, extending and collapsing itself, stretching its muscles after thousand of years of dormancy.

    "Aaahhh...Aaahhhh," his deep, beastly voice sounded, chest expanding wide as he took in more cold breaths.

    The moonlight began to fade as the night was beginning to progress into morning. The azure cave cascaded into an golden aura, the soft yellow light warming Bel-Sarra-Usar's body. The warmth of the light and of El's touch seemed to awaken the mythical beast more as he slowly began to rise from the ground, whipping his head back to stare up at El with his blank, onyx eyes. He opened his mouth widely, showing off his saber fangs, and gave a very low, ghostly hiss.

    With a burst of withheld energy, Bel-Sarra-Usar began to thrash around as he struggled to remember to fly. He beat his body against the cave walls in all corners, giant boulders raining down, as he screamed. His wings flapped crazily, knocking down the marble cubes, scrapping against the walls, and destroying the cavern he called home for all those forgotten years. He swung his arms as he began to take flight, his dragon tail smashing everywhere, some coming dangerously close to El.

    Finally, he clawed his way up the side of the cave and wormed his way out the top opening of the cavern. He threw his body through, letting his hair fall back, as gave the open skies a deafening screams. With a final flap, he took flight into the dawn skies.
    #9 MUSΞ, Jun 21, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2015
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  10. During Usar's long and chaotic process of release, El was still tranced. Her body floating in mid-air, seemingly unphased by the destruction of Usar's stone shell and the cave due to his long serpentine limbs rampaging around. Her head craned down at his grounded form, staring into his onyxes with her rubies. Both white-clad figures were showered by golden light, one placid while the other thrashed around like a massive newborn baby. Amidst all of the falling boulders and scraping dragon claws, the albino floated still, it was when Usar escaped his home through the roof that El's body began to dim, gently floating back down to the ruined ground. As the glow vanished, she collapsed, landing on her sides, her eyes fluttered to a close.

    It had been a few hours, but El felt like sleeping through a whole day, she woke up with a yawn, stretching her body. "W-wha-?" She looked all around her, the last time she remembered, the blue cave was in crisp condition... but now, everything lay broken around her and the giant statue was missing. "What happened?" She mumbled as she stood up, dusting off her dress, the familiar weight on her back was gone, "My... bag?" She examined herself and true to her anxiety, her backpack was missing. She scowled, her eyes drooping in disappointment, that meant she lost all of her parchments, ink, pen along with the bread, but... it wasn't a huge problem, her drawings were left in her home, all that she carried were blank canvases. Still, Papa and Mama would scold her for so carelessly losing her belongings, heaving a heavy sigh, El trudged through the ruins, she wanted to go home. Suddenly, an inexplicable fear shot up at her heart, her gut instinct was warning her... but of what? A low rumble from the cave which grew louder with each passing second was her answer, as the result of Usar's rampage, the entire complex was coming down.

    "Ha... ha... come on, come on!!" The figure of a small girl dashing through the pathway where she entered could be seen, El tried her best to compensate the lack of light with her knowledge of the place. "Kyah?!" She barely dodged a falling rock that landed just right behind her, wasting no time, she plowed through, vaulting over debris, ducking, and threw herself forward just before the archway crumbled. "Huff... huff..." She panted, gasping for breath, but her trial wasn't over yet, she was back on the living quarters which was also crumbling down. Getting back on her feet, El continued, she stumbled a few times, scratching her legs and arms, her dress was torn here and there. "Oh no... no no no no no!" Her eyes widened when the cave's entrance gradually closing down on her, if it closed, she'd be trapped here. El winced as she mustered all that she got left, with her adrenaline pumping, the child flexed her legs as she leaped forward, landing with a forward roll, the roll that managed to get her pass under the boulder before it slammed on the ground, closing off the entrance.

    "Ha... ha..." El held her thumping chest with one hand, she survived, she actually survived, she didn't know how, but a cornered person could do wonders. By the time she escaped, the morning sun was already up in the sky, showering the mountains and valley with its rays, El put one hand in front of her eyes as she looked away from the glowing ball of fire, why now of all times. Her bag was missing which meant she couldn't use her cloak - carried specifically for these kinds of occasion - to cover herself. She must find shelter or get home as quickly as possible to avoid sun burns on her sensitive skin. "K-kou?" She called out for the Fae, no answer, "Kou? Are you there? Kou! I need your help." Odd, usually it'd come to her... she never meet it during after sunrise though so... perhaps the Fae only came out at night, nevertheless, she must continue with or without it. "Mama, Papa, I'm sorry..." El sobbed as she stood up, wincing, taking her first step back towards Horizon Tower. Idly, she thought maybe she should've come with Orchid, the girl could help her, the saying 'regret always comes late' rang very true.
  11. As soon as the morning sun cut its way through the foggy clouds, Horizon Tower City came to life. The armed forces and guards left their quarters of the tower and marched to the training barracks located just outside the city, the farmers left their stone cabins to tend to the fields, the early entrepreneurs began to work in their little shops, and all the school children awoke to attend school. The tower city started bright and early and ran all day until the start of night.

    To all, the weather around the mountainous region never went over an uncomfortable temperature. There was always a cold breeze and a shift of fog covered the place at specific times of the day. However, to those like El, the sun seemed to be more piercing and bright than in other locations.

    As El walked, the lush grass sprouting through stacks of large pebbles swayed in the cool wind. Few animals that made these high mountain tops home, skipped and frolicked as most were either mountain goats or a type of mountain deer. Above, swarms of hawks and other birds of prey circled, each wanting to find a dead, decaying carcass rather than hunt.

    The morning went on, a different animal appearing before El, checking on the small human before hurrying off to continue its day. Briefly blocking the rays of the sun, a large shadow cascaded over El. It tried its best to keep up with her pace, but frequently had to circle as each beat of its large wings propelled it much, much further.

    Bel-Sarra-Usar, in a state of content, flew overhead. He looked down at El as he circled again, descending down and landing just a few ways ahead of the small girl. He hunched his shoulders up, wings tucked tightly, and shook his entire body as he took in the morning light. He then curled his tail around him, sitting like a rattlesnake preparing to strike, as he simply eyed the girl with curiosity.
  12. Making her way under the tree tops, El deliberately planned her steps so she would mostly travel under the shades, avoiding blank spots - where the sun rays shone directly - as much as possible. The cool breeze and early morning fog certainly helped her, not everything was against her it seemed. "Hm?" A doe stopped at a few metres away from her, her ears twitching and snout smelling the air, she examined the two-legged creature curiously. She looked adorable, El couldn't help to giggle despite her conditions. "Oh, hey..." As soon as El reached out, the doe seemed startled a bit then ran off, "Wait! Ah..." Her head drooped, she sighed, not really surprised. Animals seemed to avoid her, the guard dogs at Horizon went agitated in her presence, some of them even barked at her as if she's a threat. She didn't know exactly why, but she had a few assumptions, the most plausible one was her voice, the very same reason why her fellow humans viewed her like she's an unnatural being.

    The particular encounter made her think, who was she exactly? Papa and Mama were honest with her since the beginning, they told her she's not their blood daughter, that they found her left alone in front of their door. All these years, she never put much thought in the issue, content with her supernatural friends. To her, the humans were the 'faeries and ghosts', while Kou and its kin were her true friends. As she continued, El could feel the presence of beings from the other realms watching her, she looked to her left and right, specks of faerie lights shimmering at the corner of her eyes, they weren't afraid of her, but none dared to approach. "It's okay," El smiled, opening her arms, "I can be your friend." It wasn't her first time, she did this all the time, these beings were fickle creatures, the fact she made one of them her best friend was quite a feat already. Just as one brave Fae floated towards her, a massive looming shadow eclipsed over the forest, the sheer divine presence scattered the Fae as they all vanished, while El held her head in pain. This crushing weight on her soul, the very same feeling she got back in the ruins.

    As she looked up, "A... ah..." she remembered, "Aaaaaaaaaah!" The statue, the statue was alive, no wonder it was missing when she woke up. El's memories regarding during her trance were hazy, but she clearly remembered this thing. Ignoring her wounds, El sprinted forward, plowing through the forest, going as fast as she could to Horizon, to safety. "No... no no, why, why are you doing this to me?!" Her voice cried out with abandon, convinced that the creature was purposely following her, circling her like an eagle hunting his prey. Every ten steps her tiny feet could accomplish, the creature sorely beat her in one massive flap of its beautiful angelic wings. "Kyah?!" In her panic, she tripped over a root, falling flat to the forest floor. She tried to get up, but her ankle was sprained, the pain was too much as El crawled on the grasses, "No... no, I don't want to die..." She began to cry, she should've never leave her safe home, "P-papa! Mama! Help meeeee!!!" She wailed, her voice drowned by the loud thud Usar made as he descended upon the earth. ", s-stay... stay away..." El sat up, scooting back until her back made contact with a tree, closing her eyes to block her vision of the beast's visage. If she was going to die, she could only hope he made it quick and painless.

    However, a strange feeling washed over her, was this... comfort? It was small at first, but it grew and grew until it was enough to overpower her fear, El blinked as she slowly came out of her shell, her red eyes eyeing the massive being closely. She was not mistaken, her source of warmth was from this chimera in front of her, "W-what...?" She felt a prickle at the back of her neck, then her body started to glow with a soft reddish-white light. Miraculously, her wounds were rapidly closing themselves then in just a few moments, all of them were healed. "D-did you...?" So many questions in her head, yet one thing was perfectly clear. the creature wasn't trying to hurt her, it was merely... curious, she could feel him, their souls reaching out to each other. "I uh..." El stood up, daring herself to take a step forward, "I'm Ellie, b-but you can call me 'El', w-who are you?" Maybe he could become her friend, like Kou.
  13. Usar cocked his head, hearing El's soft voice. The tip of his tail waved slowly, the hook dragging against the ground as he continued to stare at the small child. He fluffed his feathers, shaking his wings as his tail uncurled slowly to approach her. Usar clawed at the ground, pulling himself forward as his tail slithered behind him. His lips parted as he began to mouth a few words, but unable to create any sounds.

    Seeing El take a step forward, Usar opened his wings and dug his claws into the ground. With a sudden pull, he leaped the distance between them and landed perfectly in front of El. The rocky ground imploded from his weight as the leaves of the trees quivered from the force.

    He leaned his face closer to El, nostrils flared as he began examine the small girl. The hook of his tail rattled, maybe displaying his curiosity and excitement, as he investigated El.

    "Ehh...ehh..." a raspy voice escaped his lips as he settled his face just in front of hers. "...El...?"

    He let his bottom lip relax, the fangs peering out, and nodded. Usar wasn't so sure what to think of El. He wasn't so sure of the world he was suddenly in. He wasn't sure why he was here. Everything was different than how it was all those thousands of years ago. Even the language El spoke was drastically different than what Usar knew. After the rage of being released from his tomb, Usar spend the earliest hours for the morning exploring his mountainous territory. He noticed the natural change of the landscape, the different types of invading plants and animals that were brought by later generations of immigrants to Horizon City Tower. He even noticed the city tower and the drastic change it underwent.

    Squinting his eyes, Usar opened his mouth again, his tongue licking over his lips.

    "...but you can call me...who are you...I'm Ellie," Usar said, trying his best to figure out this new language. "El...but you can call me...I'"

    He curled his tail up, sitting in front of El, watching the girl closely as he repeated the words over and over.
  14. A reminiscent of their little hide-and-seek game, specifically the huge difference between covering distances, when El took just one step forward, the beast reacted by leaping through the air. His huge body closed their distances in one mere effortless jump, causing minor destruction to the this particular patch of woods. "Nnnh!" El instinctively covered her face as dusts and leaves chaotically flew around her, her torn dress and white hair fluttering in the disturbed wind. Any other person would panic or lash out in self-preservation instinct, El would too... if not for this strange spiritual bond she felt with the beast. The child slowly opened her eyes, finding the beast's face right in front of hers, her eyes blinked once in mutual curiosity as her right hand reached out, carefully pressing her palm to his cheek, caressing his ashen white skin, pale white... just like her. El's lips went slightly ajar in awe, she continued to examine his face then his torso without an ounce of hesitation.

    "Ah, you can speak?" A smile grew on her lips as the creature called out her name, albeit raspy and growling, he clearly spoke her name. If he could speak that meant he's sentient, El firmly believed in the idea as her smile grew into a small giggle, "Yes, I am El, what's your name?" The child walked from side to side examining Usar's massive body from various angles, looking past the destructive power he demonstrated earlier, this beast was really a beautiful being, the glossy white scales, angelic wings, and... well, he did have a rather cute face. "Ehehe~" El skipped happily, hopping back to him with her hands behind her back, "So, why were you in that cave? You looked like a statue the first time I saw you then uh..." She put one finger to her lips, "I didn't remember what happened but when I woke up, you were gone... the cave was destroyed and uh..." Scratching the back of her head, El giggled sheepishly, "The crumbling cave almost crushed me." She tilted her head, waiting to see if he could answer her.

    "Eeeh..." She scowled with a raised eyebrow as the Beast - she'd call him that for now - muttered incoherent jumble of words, he was learning to speak just like a... "Big baby..." A look of epiphany fell over the child's face, the Beast might be a huge intimidating powerful beast, but past all that, he's just a newborn infant, lost and confused in the world he's in. "There, there..." El went on her 'motherly' mode, trying to mimic her adoptive mother as best as she could, the child pat Usar's head, "You're just a big boo boo, aren't cha?" She even used baby talk, hugging his human torso, "Don't worry, El can be your mommy, come on, let's go to my hom-..." Scratch that, he's far too big for it. "Ehm..." El crossed her arms as her young mind tried to find a way to keep him, asking her parents would be out of the question as with anyone in the Tower City.

    "I heard voices from over here, search there!" An authoritative voice called out from the distance. Voices rather familiar to El.

    "*Gasp*?!" The girl perked up, her eyes widening in panic, "Oh no! It's the Guards, t-they must be searching for me!" She quickly came to a conclusion, she had gone way past her usual return time, her parents must be worried sick and asked the guards to search for her. Of course, Usar's thrashing of the forest attracted their attention, "L-listen, they can't know you are here." El pushed his scaly dragon body away with two small hands, accomplishing nothing more than gentle presses on the Beast's body. "You must go, now!" El looked up at him with begging eyes, conveying her worry and fear through their connected soul, if the Beast didn't understand human speech yet, surely he would know these primal emotions.

    Whether Usar obeyed or not, El would dash away from him, heading right to the direction of the guards' voices to buy him some time. She was basically turning herself in, but after what happened, being scolded and punished didn't sound so awful. She soon spotted a squad of Horizon Tower Guards, about five of them, in the distance, she waved her hands, "Hey, over here!" Her distinctive eerie voice rang out, causing goosebumps on the guards.

    "There she is, that naughty white-haired brat." One guard grumbled in annoyance as he stomped to her then firmly grabbed her wrist, he knelt down, his brown eyes leering at the girl, "What happened to your clothes? You are in big trouble, little missy." He pulled her towards the other guards as they escorted her back to the Tower City.

    She could feel him, this weight on her soul, she just knew where he was even they were out of visual contact. "Stay safe, Beasty..." She mentally prayed as she looked over her shoulder, hoping he didn't decide to follow her.

    OOC: I think I'll let you decide what kind of punishment the guards would give to naughty children. :P
  15. Usar blinked as El patted him on the head, tilting it as she began to speak in a strange voice. All he did was look at her, familiarizing her face and voice, even at times attempting to mimic her posing. She was such an interesting being to her. So small and delicate compared to him that Usar began to hunch himself smaller to try and copy her size. He knew his powers and his strengths. He didn't want to risk hurting her or this unexplained connection he felt with her.

    He perked his head up, hearing the new voices entering their range. Snarling, Usar let out a low huff and turned in the direction the guards were coming from. Just as he was going to confront them, he felt the little girl push against his body. Usar looked down, watching her lips move, then back at the direction of the guards. As El ran off, Usar clung and flattened his body as low to the ground as possible and slithered silently away through the forest and disappeared behind a boulder.


    Waiting outside the apartment was El and a single guard cadet. Inside, were the rest of the guard unit that went in search of El discussing on how she escaped the tower and what should happen next. Her father and mother were in trouble as well for not watching over El after curfew.

    The door opened and the guards walked outside. The main leader, a guy named Lucius, turned to glare down at El before looking over at her parents.

    "This will be your only warning. Leaving the tower is a very, very serious offense, especially for a child, and comes with huge consequences. Because of your clean record and age, I won't purse the full extent of the punishment to you two. But, if this happens again, the girl will be removed from your custody and put into the orphanage," he explained. "The tax collector will come by later to retrieve your fine."

    Lucius closed the door to the sobbing eyes of El's mother and the pale face of her fathers. He began to walk down the hall, the other guards following after. The one watching El shoved her forward to follow the rest.

    They walked to the bottom floor and through the park, the crowd parting ways to let them through. A few citizens whispered and pointed, knowing of El, but never seeing the little girl before.

    It was nearing noon and reaching the hottest part of the day. Lucius covered his eyes from the sunlight as he lead the group out of the tower and to the farmer's section. Here, over 300 acres of fenced in land was dedicated for crops and farm animals to be used and food and other supplies for the towers. Here, the poorest of the poor and the orphan child workers worked all day on the crops.

    Gathering under the covered lattice, were the orphan child workers and a few of their supervisors. The guards pushed El forward to Lucius, who grabbed her hand.

    "For your punishment, you will working out in the farms to pick fruits and vegetables with the rest of the orphans for a good week. From sunrise to sunset with no breaks in between. Of course, you can shorten your time working to just two days if you tell me how you escaped from the tower," Lucius told her.

    On cue, Orchid and her little gang of boys turned suddenly to look at them. Her eyes widened, hands curling into fists, as she held her breath. The boys all stared angrily at El from the table they were sitting at.
  16. The little girl kept her silence as she waited in front of her apartment where her parents and guard captain Lucius were talking, she fidgeted with her new clean dress in anxiety and fear, she not only just got herself in trouble but dragged her parents with her as well, her parents who were so gracious to let her explore during the night. As Lucius came out, she looked away, not from him, but from her adoptive parents, Mama was crying softly while Papa was pale with shock, they must be horrified, they loved her so much and these guards threatened to take her away from them. The white-haired girl struggled to keep her tears from falling, she'd just waste them, these guards wouldn't care in the slightest. Quivering, El had no choice but to follow them, wincing as one of them shoved her small body with a tad bit too much force for a child.

    "No, no... don't look at me!" The walk became a torture when she got to the park, she hated how these people looked at her as if she's a pariah, they had nothing to do with her and she had done nothing to harm them, why would they look at her like that? Those hissing whispers, snapping at her like venomous vipers, El's red eyes flaring with anger mixing with despair, knowing she could do nothing about them. "Ah... ha... h-hot..." To make things worse, the dreaded sun was at its full glory, its reign spanning over everything visible, scorching hot rays blazing down at the earth. Even Lucius himself had to cover his eyes, let alone the albino child, she wanted to cover her light-sensitive eyes, but the heat burned her arms instead, "N... nh, n-no, please... mmfh..." She mumbled, her eerie voice wracked with sobs. She didn't have the time, nor the will to appreciate the expansive farmland. A small relief came for her as they went under a lattice-covered ground, it still had numerous sun spots due to the nature of the pattern, but better than nothing.

    El looked up in terror as Lucious elaborated her punishment, "N-no..." Her lips trembled as she listened to each and every word, she couldn't work all day out here under the sun for a week, she'd die. Doctor Ryan had told her to avoid direct sunlight as much as possible due to her condition, he was trying to kill her, didn't he know this? This monster of a man was obviously an idiot or he knew, but went with it anyway, he got a lot of children to order around, one dead little girl wouldn't mean much to the Tower. El was so convinced by her demonic view of Lucius, her eyes narrowed in hatred, wanting to lash out at him so bad, the feeling would be clearly felt by Usar as well, wherever he was.

    "..." The girl's eyes brigthened up a bit when he spoke about the offer, it'd be easy, she'd just tell him that there was a hole near the bread shop. Of course, El realized the gravity of her decision when she made eye-contact with Orchid and her cohorts, the rubies widened as her lips went slightly ajar, they looked angry at her and it wasn't hard to guess why, if she ratted the hole out, it'd involve them. El looked away from Lucius, straight down to her shifting feet, she didn't want to betray Orchid, she helped her out of her own will, how could she? However, the prospect of working endlessly from dawn to dusk, under this scorching hot weather, terrified her to no end, she didn't want to die, , Papa and Mama would be sad if they found her dead body on the fields. Primal fear took hold of her soul as El closed her eyes, her lips quivering, "I... I-it's..." She deliberately ignored Orchid and her gang, pushing them away from her reality, "It's a hole near t-the bread shop... I... I snuck out from t-there..." She gasped when Lucius didn't let go of her hand, his face saying that her little explanation wasn't enough, "I... I knew f-from o-one of the orphans..." This was it, "O-orchid..." they'd hate her forever, but she had no choice.
  17. The gang of orphans' face lost their color as Orchid couldn't hold back a loud gasp. She looked up at Lucius, her mouth completely open and shook her head slowly.

    "She's...she's lying!" Orchid pointed a finger at El with extreme hatred. "Everyone blames us orphans for everything because we're easiest to pick on!"

    Lucius waved a finger over to the guard.

    "Check on the bread shop and see if there's anything there. Also, question the owner and those around if Orchid and the rest are responsible," he told the guard who quickly hurried away.

    Lucius sighed as he looked over the children, scratching his head as he tried to figure what to do. One of the farmers, an elderly woman arrived with a wagon full of baskets, small hand shovels, and picks. Also included were giant sun hats and water bottles tied by a long strap.

    "Alright, for now let's start working. Gather your things quickly and follow Ms. Eve to her farm just over there. You'll be picking...I don't know...some sort of vegetable," Lucius instructed. "Get moving."

    Orchid ran her arms across her teary eyes as she lined up with the boys to grab their equipment. Some of her group tried their best to console her while others stared down El angrily.

    Once everyone collected their equipment, Ms. Eve led the team to her farm only a few ways. The team scurried down the small hill, through the patches of leaves, and to their starting point under the blazing sun. All had on their giant sun hats and the water bottle wrapped tightly around them.

    After Ms. Eve demonstrated the correct way to pick the leafy vegetable, she let the team of children on their own. Orchid knelt down, ripping the leaves from the plant to place in the basket. The rest of the boys surrounded El.

    "So, you go and tattle on the one kid that wanted to be your friend?" one boy asked El. "You're somethin' else."

    "She's a freak. That's what she is," another boy commented. "See, I told Orchid not to trust her. You can't trust someone with eyes like hers. She got us all in real trouble..."

    "What should we do with her?" the other pitched in. "She made Orchid cry. We can't let that go."

    The boys gathered tighter around El, grasping their hand shovels and picks in their hands. They didn't care too much about how much trouble they were in. All they cared about was Orchid, the one who held their little family together. With Orchid devastated, the whole family of orphans came to her defense.

    "Stop," Orchid pushed her way through the boys and peered at El. "I want to talk to her first..."
  18. El closed her eyes, looking away as she closed herself down from everything around her. Orchid's desperate hateful voice tore at her heart, El felt like a treacherous scum, but... surely Orcy could understand her situation. The white-haired girl kept her silence as Lucius gave her first assignment, she couldn't be bothered to know who Ms. Eve was, unless the old woman could turn day to night, she was just another faceless human to the child. Ellie picked up her things, fumbling with them a few times - she never held these things before let alone knew how to use them - and started following Eve, ignoring the vengeful stares directed at her.

    As her pale form left the lattice-covered grounds, into the scorching sun, El pulled her hat down, wincing and gasping as she tried to make herself as small as possible. Her heart was thumping like a condemned prisoner, her mind shut down as her body went on auto-pilot, she wanted this to end. "H-help me..." El whispered to herself, if only Kou was here... heck, if only Usar was here to help her, his massive body could block out the sun easily. El didn't catch a single thing from the old lady's demonstration, she was looking down at the ground, rubbing her arm with her hand, a few patches of sunburn began marring her very pale skin. Before she knew it, Orchid's gang was surrounding her, she looked up at those hateful male faces, "N-no... I-I'm sorry, p-please..." She lips quivered in fear.

    Each accusing words stabbed at her heart and soul, especially those from the second boy. El knew she was different from other children, but to explicitly have herself labelled as a freak hurt, it hurt more than the sun's fiery touch. El didn't try to defend herself as the boys approached her with their tools, she simply knelt down, hugging her own body with her eyes closed shut. It was when Orchid separated them that El looked up, her eyes streaming tears as her kneeling form hugged Orchid's waist, burying her face to the tomboy's belly, "I'm sorry! I'm so sorry! I... I didn't mean to... b-but... t-the sun, s-sun... m-my skin, I... t-the Doctor s-said, I... I die... n-no, y-you have to u-understand..." She broke into an incoherent rant, taking shelter in the redhead's presence, she was the only one who could protect her from the group of monsters around her.
  19. Orchid sniffled as she looked down at El hugging her waist tightly. She could feel the wetness of El's tears through her thin shirt, making Orchid squirm uncomfortably.

    " don't no how much trouble you got us all into..." Orchid said softly, looking around at her family of orphans. "Why couldn't you just say you found the hole and not blame us?"

    The boys crossed their arms across their chest, looking down at El in disgust. One boy, the oldest at 11, stood next to Orchid and placed a hand on her shoulder. He looked as if he could be Orchid's older brother. There were rumors the two were related somehow, but no one ever bothered to look into the fact.

    "We have to figure out how to get out of this," he told El. "Lucius will be back any time now with some sort of proof."

    "We're screwed," a boy chimed in. "This girl just screwed us all because her dumb self got lost outside the tower! Orchid! Why did you show her our hole?!"

    "Because I wanted to be her friend since I always feel bad when I see her alone! How would I know she would do this to me!" Orchid yelled, brushing off the hand on her shoulder.

    The group of orphans, realizing how much trouble they will be if anyone saw them near the bread shop, began to cry softly. If there was any law to remember in the tower city, it would be to never leave the tower unless you had a specific job or asked for permission. The reason for staying in the tower was muddled as the original documents were lost somewhere in the tower. But, from what was taught in school, the people of Horizon was denied access to the outside world by a highly powerful ruler who changed religion.

    "I should have figured she didn't want to be my friend since whenever I was around she made it feel like she didn't want me there," Orchid went on, rubbing her eyes. "But I kept trying because I think everyone deserves a friend..."

    "What should we do to her? She deserves to be punished or something!" all the boys said in unison.

    "...what's the point..." Orchid kicked El away from her, her crying eyes turning into anger. "Even if we do something, she'll get to go back home to her family and we'll stay in trouble."

    Lucius arrived with one of his guards, a smirk on his face. All the children lined up, some looking down at the ground while others looked high into the sky. Orchid turned her head away, refusing to look at Lucius who was standing in front of the group. In his hands was a few sheets of paper with a couple of notes scribbled on. He licked his fingers to flip through the pages.

    "Well, looks like El told the truth. Thomas and others reported seeing all of you behind in his shop and 'up to something' they say," Lucius said. "Orchid, I know you're the leader behind this, being the little pest you are. Do you all have anything to say?"

    They all collapsed onto the ground, kneeling in front of Lucius.

    "We're sorry!" they all cried. "We're sorry!"

    Lucius chuckled as he watched them, getting some sort of joy.

    "Well, since you all are curious about the outside world, I have perfect lifetime punishments for you all. I wish I didn't have give you these severe punishments, but what you all did is a crime serious enough for exile from the tower. As children, I'm being lenient," Lucius said. "For the boys, you all will be put on the tower construction team for life."

    The boys nodded slowly, all their cheeks stained with tears. The tower construction team was responsible for building and adding floors to the tower. They consisted of criminals and cadet dropouts with a high mortality rate from accidentally falling to death.

    "And're now part of the military," Lucius chuckled. "Suit up, you're training starts now."

    A devastated scream escaped Orchid's mouth as she fell out on the dirt. The boys surrounded her, pleading with Lucius to change his mind. While for men, being in the military was the highest honor, for women it was the equivalent of being shamed and discarded. A women in the military meant a life of nothing. No chance of finding a husband, no chance of having a family. Being a women in the military means you're a sacrificial goat for both the tower and the men in the service. If a women wasn't sent on a suicide mission, she was meant to satisfy the male guards in whichever way.

    The other guard grabbed the fighting Orchid, pushing away the other boys as he carried Orchid away to the military barracks for child soldiers just beyond the farms. Their anger turned to El as one boy leaped on top of her, attempting to punch her in the face as the other boys surrounded El to fight out their hatred of her. Lucius, grabbing his gun, whipped some of the boys away with it. More guards arrived, grabbing each boy and escorting them to the construction site.

    Lucius cleaned the blood from the butt of his gun and looked down at El.

    "Alright, finish up. You have a couple of more hours before you can go home. Thanks for letting us know about the hole. The boys will seal it up later today."

    For the rest of the day, El was out in the farms alone until the beginning of nightfall.
  20. "But... he... t-the guard..." The albino couldn't really explain why she decided to rat them out, it had been an on-the-spot decision and Lucius' deep gaze was coaxing everything out of her, being a child who was rather socially awkward with her fellow humans certainly didn't help. As the orphans discussed Orchid's ill-fated decision, El couldn't keep her sobs and gasps, they were right, she was a cowardly traitor who doomed her friends for her own sake. Orchid's confession only tore at her already wounded heart, the tomboy simply wanted to be her friend... and El paid them back in certain doom. She was wrong though, not everyone deserved a friend, one such as El, a snake in child's clothing. The white-haired girl didn't react when Orchid kicked her off, it wasn't enough, she deserved so much more than this, she should be punished instead of these innocent orphans, but of course... she had a family, she was luckier than them and she just had to show them how much of a viper she was.

    Ellie looked up as the guards arrived, she knew they were all doomed judging by the sinister smirk on the man's face. El felt emptiness and despair as Lucius spoke her name. She froze in fear as the orphans begged for mercy, the grim sight quickly taking its toll on the young girl's naive mind, how could it get any worse? Well, it could, proven by El's red eyes widening in horror as the merciless guard condemned the boys to a life of dangerous hard labor and Orchid... by the Gods above, a child two years younger than her drafted into the military. Of course, El didn't know the actual twisted role of female soldiers, her innocent mind thought Orchid was going to die fighting, if that thought horrified her... let alone the truth. Like a soldier who was rewarded for a deed he didn't want to commit, El simply shut down, she let the boy knock her down and would not fight back even if he tried to kill her, but alas... the guards 'protected' her, the betrayer freak.

    "You..." El's eyes flared with hatred and glowed - literally - as Lucius turned his back towards her, her hands gripped into fists as her birthmark pulsated with a red glow. She gulped, shaking her head as she felt whispers echoing in her head, guttural and deep in a tongue she never heard before, but could mysteriously understand the meaning. Quivering in fear and regret, El shook it off as she used her job and heat of the sun to get her mind off the orphans. As she worked, Ms. Eve took pity on her as she requested for a dark cloak to cover El's skin, a small comfort to the guilt-ridden child.


    It was nightfall, quiet and eerie as the full moon shone in the sky, bathing the mountains in its scarlet glow. The Red Moon, an annual phenomenon in which the moon shone blood red, it was believed that on this night, ghosts and spirits of the dead roamed freely, legends told by parents to their children that wraiths would consume their soul if they were naughty. On this particular night, El slept in her bedroom, having already done her job for the day. Her mind filled with nothing but the hateful despairing faces of Orchid and the orphans... also of Lucius, the demonic wretch who took pleasure in hurting children...


    Her eyes shot open as they glowed crimson, just like the moon, her body slowly floated up to a standing position. Her form was pulsating with an arcane glow as El's mouth mumbled, "Omoz Sek..." ("Darkness comes...") she spoke the whispers out loud as the she floated out of her window then ascended to the tower's top, "Izh acha safras." ("You will suffer.") With each syllable she spoke, the very air grew thicker with a stench of death. She arrived at Horizon's roof, opening her arms, bathing in the red moon's full glow.

    "Izh vo'acha ses..." ("You can not hide...")

    Ghastly wails reverberated through the air as apparitions, spectres, and wraiths were summoned from the other side, their shimmering ethereal forms taking shape as they flew up from the forests around Horizon, hearing the call of the matriarch.

    "Izh vo'acha nesh..." ("You are not safe...")

    The guards stationed at forward posts all squinted their eyes at the otherworldly sight before them, eyes widened and mouths screamed as a horde of ethereal beings flew above them, gathering into a swirl like locusts at the tower's top. They wanted to report, to do their duty, but they found their very souls leaving their body, sucked out by the wraiths around them, leaving an empty shell.

    "Ozh! Icha! Tak! Izh!" ("I! will! have! you!") Opening her mouth wide, El snarled as she bare her fangs, pointing her finger down as her tranced mind commanded her summons to exterminate the guards, Lucius in particular. Under the scarlet moon, the alabaster child called upon vengeful spirits, driven by her own lust for revenge and repentance, she'd make things right, her 'friends' would help her. All hell broke loose as the wraiths spread their devastation to the tower and beyond, consuming every guard in their wake, corporeal bullets and blades had no effect on their spectral forms.

    Panic and disorder ran rampant as a guard broke into Lucius' bedroom, "S-sir! W-we are under attack!" A guard spoke with pale face and trembling hands, "I-it's the dead, sire! The dead!! A-aaaaaaaaaah-..." *Thud* he dropped dead as a small pale hand stabbed his back all the way through his chest, a hole on his torso where his heart should be, the guard dropped dead, revealing the floating figure of El, her hair snaking outwards all around her as she held the guard's beating heart in her right hand, "Izh vo'poz doq nith, Luciash!" ("You are powerless here, Lucius") She snarled, flying straight to Lucius, aiming to make him share the guard's - literally - heartless fate.
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