The Cursed

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Saren, Nov 2, 2013.

  1. "Why do you have to ruin everything?"

    Well, that's quite rude. I don't ruin everything. I got that old woman to give you that meaningless food you keep grumbling about.

    "You know what I mean, Aehs. You tried to kill her! I was going to give her money."

    Why do that? You have power you are unwilling to use. It makes you a terrible host.

    "That's just because you want out. You'll get your release in two days, like we agreed. Now shut up. People are looking... again."

    Hmph. Filthy humans.

    Shea had a terrible Curse. How he'd managed that one, he'd never know. The gods hated him, that was for sure. He'd been 'blessed,' as Aehs said, with the archdemon's conscious for whatever reason. Aehs had never deigned to explain how he'd been roped into such a thing as possessing a human, and Shea didn't care to sit through his cocky, arrogant tales.

    All he knew was that he wanted Aehs gone. The archdemon tried to compel Shea to kill people all the time, more so when there was a crowd. After struggling to contain the spectral creature, they had worked out a deal. Once a week, for the entire day, Aehs was allowed to roam using Shea's body to kill animals, never people. While the archdemon had agreed to the terms, he was just itching to kill something that would scream in his claws.

    Which is exactly what Shea was trying to prevent.

    The only thing useful to come from Aehs's possession was an increase in strength and endurance. Outside of that, Shea wanted to die, if only to take the archdemon down with him. However, he'd tried multiple times, and each time, Aehs had stopped him. It drove Shea to anger and tears and every other emotion he could conjure.

    In that moment, he was traveling through a small town, watching other people use their Curse to help. They were the lucky ones. They didn't have to deal with... Aehs. They had setbacks, but they didn't have a power-hungry and dominant archdemon whispering in their ear every waking, and sleeping, second.

    I can hear you, you know. You are a pathetic waste of skin.

    "Would you be quiet?!" The outburst was enough to garner looks, and Shea tipped his hood lower over his face. None of these people could help him. And as far as both human and archdemon were concerned, no one ever could.
  2. Life as a beggar was never something anyone wanted, regardless of their lot in life. And yet, one young woman sought them out. She would not consider herself one of their kind, but certainly she ran with them for much of her life. They were most tolerant of her sometimes destructive illness, and also the most in need of her help.

    Today, Tamsin was walking through town, carrying a bag of fresh foods that she intended to hand over to a middle aged man with a debilitating and gruesome looking disease. He could not venture from his hovel, for fear of the reactions of his peers. And so the girl had taken to aiding him, in return for a shared space in his meagre lodgings. It was just unfortunate that her own predicament made some tasks rather tricky.

    On her way back, the redhead often had to pause, leaning against a wall as she was taken by fits of coughing, blood and spittle coating her pale flesh. Her symptoms were much like that of tuberculosis, with the addition of a burnt trachea. The being responsible rarely spoke, having only done so on a handful of ocassions during her childhood. Tamsin was unsure whether this was a good sign, but took it for what it was.

    During one of these unscheduled pit stops, the diminutive woman happened to notice someone that did not seem at all at one with the world. He might have been entirely mad, or else have simply forgotten that he was speaking to himself in the middle of a crowd. It was difficult to tell. There was also the possibility that there really was someone there - stranger things have happened.

    In her capacity as a slightly over enthusiastic good doer, Tamsin did not simply freeze when the man finally snapped at whomever he was talking to. Instead, she tentatively approached, muffling another rattling cough as she did so.

    "Excuse me, are youu alright?" Her words were spoken in an even tone, her shyness obvious, as well as her intent to help.
  3. You seem to have attracted another one of your kind.

    "What the hell are you--...oh. Uh... no. Not really. I mean... yeah. I'm fine."

    Smooth. I'm sure you're a real hit with your disgusting female humans.

    "Keep it to yourself," Shea snapped, but there was no one at his side. It was as if he were growling at the person in front of him, and this poor girl naive enough to ask about his condition didn't deserve that. "I'm sorry. Can I help you? If I can't, I need to be going before I kill someone." The words just spilled from his mouth like they were natural. Aehs had that kind of effect on him.

    We're killing someone? Oh, let it be that old man that yelled at me. I'd enjoy sucking his soul from his useless body.

    "No one is dying today." It wasn't a reassurance to the people around him, who were starting to give him dirtier looks than he wanted. Eventually, they'd remove him from their town, even at the cost of lives more often than not. It always happened, and it was always the archdemon's fault, even if he thought slaying them for their souls would be any better than just leaving.
  4. Tamsin raised an eyebrow, understandably dubious of the muddled answer she had been given. Something wasn't right here, it was just a matter of figuring out just what that was. If this was a case of psychosis, the stranger was in deep, entirely believing in these manifestations, but the gut instinct was that it was something yet more sinister than that. It frightened her, the possibility of the danger that lay in wait for those near this troubled person.

    "Please, what's all this about death?" Tamsin enquired quietly, shifting her purchase to heft with one arm. "Would it help if you went somewhere quieter? I know a place, it's very peaceful." An abandoned and dying orchard. It was a small place, and a little gloomy, but it was still a good place to visit in order to clear ones head.

    Still with no regard for her own safety, Tamsin remained with this man, introducing herself in an effort to help him become more at ease, and perhaps herself too. She was dreadfully nervous, as was obvious in her wavering eyes and small voice. "My name's Tamsin." She offered a hand, just out of habit, more than anything.
  5. Peace. It's so boring. Wait... What are you--?

    "Peaceful and away would be much appreciated. Thank you." He wanted to move right away, but then she offered her hand. "I'm... Shea," he said, caution sweeping over him. Aehs was notorious for sporadically gaining control of Shea's movements, and if he did so when he touched this girl, she'd probably die.

    "Sorry, but I probably shouldn't touch you. It... It doesn't end well when I do that."

    The gods must despise me, for they chose the most passive and peaceful host of all time.

    "...I wish I could kill you." It was under his breath, but still audible for anyone near by.

    I would love to see you try, human.
  6. This was all somewhat disconcerting, to put it lightly. "Well, I'm pleased to meet you." Tamsin smiled, attempting to hide her own unease as she was given the odd rebuff. She wasn't offended, just worried that she was getting herself into yet another situation that was going to end badly.

    Through a wet cough, Tamsin motioned for him to follow her, inadvertently putting more distance between them when he muttered that ever so worrying sentence under his breath. Why she didn't hightail and run, was anyones guess, and so one would just have to deal with the fact that this was a foolhardy girl.

    Tamsin led him a short distance, to a sparsely populated semi-residential area, and then to a walled off space that was the orchard itself. You could just see the treetops poking above the red brick. The door had long since fallen off its hinges, the structure was old, having been in a cider brewing family for generations, until finally the business had gone bust.

    "I don't think anyone else comes here." Tamsin said as she stepped gingerly into the overgrown grass amidst the dying trees. "I'm sorry to badger you, but are you sure you're alright? You seem a bit...mixed up." Putting it lightly.
  7. What an awful and serene place.

    "You would say that... Can't you shut up for five minutes so I can have a conversation?"

    Why in the hell would you want to do that? You have me.

    Shea could just hear the smug smile in his voice. "Yeah, you're definitely who I want to talk to."

    If you did, maybe we wouldn't have this weak argument.

    "Sorry if I don't trust you." The entire conversation was going on as he was walking, and Shea was careful to keep enough distance between himself and Tamsin so she wasn't continuously wondering about his conversations with Aehs. He was studying the trees and letting the soft breeze ruffle his hair as he took his off when Tamsin spoke. "No, it's fine. It's... No, I'm not really okay. My Curse is awful."

    How would you feel if I called you awful, human?

    "You do call me awful!" Shea snapped, and then he sighed at Tamsin. "Sorry. He's... chatty. He hates me on top of that. I can't imagine your Curse is much better than mine, but if you aren't stuck with him, you're certainly better off than I."
  8. Tamsin heard only mumbles, nothing that she could make out, and she really didn't want to. For one, it was damn rude to be eavesdropping, particularaly when she had just offered her aid, and second, most of what he was saying seemed pretty disturbing.

    Rather than worry about all this, Tamsin spent her time trying to suppress her coughs, instead keeping the infection inside her, which only added to the severe burning sensation that stemmed in her lungs, continuing up through her respiratory tract and only ending around the skin of her lips, which were chapped and red with the sore pain that never ended.

    Despite this, Tamsin shook her head when she was spoken to, "My curse is no burden." She furrowed her brow, considering what Shea's must be, "Is yours a dual personality? Or, are there two of you in there? I'm sorry to pry..." She couldn't quite help herself, she was genuinely interested, and only wished there was something she could do. But her healing power was of no use in these situations, she had tried it before, and only succeeded in exhausting herself.
  9. "You're lucky. He's... trapped in here with me. Dual personality, like you said. Don't worry about prying. It's nice to tell someone that I'm not crazy, even if they think I am."

    This one'll probably run with her tail between her legs the moment I show up, if she thinks you're good enough to stick around. You aren't of course, but humans are quite stupid.

    "He's difficult to deal with. I haven't really found a solution for him."

    I need no solution, human.

    Aehs's beating down of his self-esteem made Shea sit down against a tree, closing his eyes. He was rarely given peace from the archdemon and his insulting quips, but if he ignored him while he spoke with someone else, it was easier to deal with. "No one really wants me around because they think I'm talking to myself. In a sense, I am. He ignores me if I try to talk in my head."

    Maybe if something interesting spilled from that face-hole of yours, like killing or gaining power, I wouldn't do so.

    "Hopefully you gained something more useful than a demon on your shoulder and in your head."
  10. Her expression remained soft, as it usually did. Tamsin listened earnestly to what Shea had to say, more than happy to let him unload his baggage onto her, even if it was just the tip of the iceberg. Her altruism was dangerous, and would one day get her killed, though this thought did nothing to deter her in her constant quest to seek out that might need even the tiniest bit of help.

    Not long after the male, the girl slipped down against her own tree, mostly because she tended to get yet weaker and more weary if she stood for too long.

    "I wish I could help in a more practical way, but if you ever need someone to talk to - or yell at, I'm usually somewhere around here." Tamsin offered, though she was well aware that she was likely to move on again at some point.

    With a sigh, Tamsin thought it was probably best to offer her own curse, it was only fair. "I'm not sure if mines twofold or just an unrelated coincidence." She began, pausing as usual in an effort to suppress another bout. "I can heal people, and I've got a phoenix spirit. He doesn't talk though, which is good." It was just unfortunate that the proximity of the demon would eventually awaken the bird.
  11. "Sounds better than him," Shea muttered, jerking his head to signify just what was inside it. However, Aehs had no striking comeback. Not yet, at least. It seemed for once he was interested in another human near Shea.

    "Your phoenix lets you heal people? Doesn't that hurt you?" Shea asked, plucking a few pieces of grass and rubbing them between his gloved fingers. Tamsin had been right. The orchard grove was peaceful, even if it didn't completely chase away what was lurking in his mind.

    A phoenix ally would be interesting to add into my plan.

    "Don't even think about it."

    A little late for that, human. You will succumb to me one day, and you'll thank me for the power I grant you.

    "Like that'll ever happen."
  12. Tamsin shrugged, unsure what the correct answer to that was. There were good and bad points to both their curses. Shea would live a long and potentially fulfiling life, although his demon would most likely drive him insane or do something worse. But Tamsin would certainly keep her sanity, though her life would be incredibly short. She was reaching the end of her tether alreaady.

    "Well, I was told the healing is separate to the phoenix. It's really just what keeps me alive. Another host would apparently die, because the spirit is so volatile." It was tricky to explain, especially when she didn't even know the truth of it. "Maybe we shouldn't talk about this. It's not often either of us get any respite, I imagine." She smiled through a searing pain that emanated from her diaphragm, tears coming to her eyes, though she would not allow them to spill.
  13. "I... yeah. Thanks, by the way. I wish I'd known about this place sooner." Shea gave her a smile before he tilted his head back against the tree. Rest was nice. There was little time to relax with a demon his head. Speaking of that devil, Shea realized only about five minutes had passed before Aehs had something to say.

    This is boring.

    "It's not boring. It's peaceful. It's a change of pace." Shea did his best to keep his voice quiet so he wouldn't disturb Tamsin. He cracked one dark brown eye open just to reaffirm her presence before Aehs growled again in his head.

    I wish you would die sometimes just so I wouldn't have to put up with this.

    "I know you do." It was the worst kind of admission. He couldn't have gotten stuck with a worse demon. On top of his insulting rambles, Aehs was an archdemon. He held incredible power, but he had a lust for domination and ruling over all. He wanted to crush any opposition, and he never wanted to rest. Being the person that he was, Shea couldn't handle this. That's why their agreement was so tentative. And then that reminded Shea that the agreement was to be fulfilled the next day. He only hoped he could be away from people when it happened.

    I say we go to one of those big cities you humans made. Awful places, but many humans to slay.

    Only a sigh escaped Shea as he did his best to get back to relaxing. Aehs was good at distracting him.

    ((Okay, now that's fixed. Stupid paragraph button not working. lol))
  14. Eventually the pain dulled to a low ebb, allowing Tamsin to at least think straight. She carefully recalled what had been said in the last few minutes, wishing she could do something in order to help Shea. Unfortunately, it seemed that he would have to cope in his own way, just as the girl herself did. At least they could provide one another with company, some of the time, anyway.

    After a while of sitting in comfortable silence, she sighed deeply, tentatively beginning to stand. It was never a particularly easy task, as her legs had a tendency to turn to jelly on her. Luckily, this time she managed to get up without too much of a wobble.

    "I'd better get going. I promised to take these to someone." Tamsin said, picking up the groceries she had abandoned previously. "Maybe I'll see you again. It was nice meeting you." And so she left, hoping that life would treat this other person well.

    The following day, Tamsin returned to the orchard. She was pleased by the far better weather, and wandered about the place in a dreamworld of her own. Of course, she still ended up depositing droplets of blood in the grass, but that was just par for the course.