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Consistency: 08/31/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Sep 01, 2022
Word Count: 941 words With her eyebrows scrunched and back hunched over the table, Sakura focused on rushing her scribbled notes. Leaves of paper laid scattered over the table, some lay forgotten while the rest waited for her to make needed connections. The kitchen’s lone lotus lamp blinked once. She paused in her work, looking up. Through the one open window beside her blew a gentle night breeze, bringing whiffs of elven incense and the minty spice of sparkle dew. Sakura’s back ached. Leaning back to stretch, she swept her gaze past their tree cottage’s small kitchen. Cushions splayed over the lounge floors coated in darkness, lit only by stray lights from the lotus lamp and the dim glows of goldsap walls. Viscous, yellow goldsap flowed and pulsed; for Sakura, they looked like mustard and butterscotch painted by a young child. Her eyes stirred to a close. Gold molded with the pitch black, and Sakura pictured herself within an aquarium as glitter and honey were poured into her surroundings, mixing, glowing, melting— “Sak’ra?” A voice drawled. Sakura blinked and shook her head, massaging her temple with one hand. “You still haven’t slept?” She turned her head to see Duran, sandy lime hair softly gleaming in the low light. His hair was tousled, strands pointing out like a porcupine. She smiled, gesturing to the papers by her hand. “Yeah. There’s a lot I have to note down.” Yawning, Duran trudged towards their fridge. He didn’t even spare the table a glance. “You work too hard.” “I—” She coughed, stifling the embarrassment rising in her throat. “No, they’re just… necessary work.” He pulled out a jug of leftover milk, not saying anything. Sakura waited, awkward tension holding her shoulders. She found she hadn’t talked to Duran a lot yet, ever since they were acquainted in Earth 19. This was probably the first time they talked alone. After gulping down a hefty amount, Duran finally gazed towards the table. He frowned as one hand placed back the jug into the fridge. “Couldn’t that wait?” Frankly, Sakura wasn’t sure. There was always a buzzing in her nerves to write down anything she felt was important. Paranoia though it may be, it held the reins to her decisions and she always let it. “What if it couldn’t?” He leaned back, an eyebrow raised. “We’re leaving in a few hours at the break of dawn. You need rest too.” There may have been concern in his words, maybe mixed with curiosity too. Yet, to Sakura, Duran still felt like a stranger, an outsider peering from outside the glass walls she had hastily built in preparation for this journey. And she couldn’t place the frustration that simmered within her chest at his words. The doors creaked open, stopping mindless words from spilling out of her mouth. The two turned to see Nighel and Rina creep into the lounge. While Nighel waved in acknowledgement, Rina continued towards the stairwell. Silence echoed in the darkness. Goldsap pulsed and glowed. Chuckling, Nighel shook his head and walked towards the kitchen. “Don’t mind her. She’s just sleepy.” Sakura thought back to Rina’s silent glares filled with doubt and distrust, looks sent towards her that Sakura knew, deep inside, she still deserved. Her lips curl into a broken, awkward curve. No words escaped her throat. The silence rang, deafening. Turning her eyes back to the table, Sakura decided to dive back into the cage she built with her papers and pen. Still, as the breeze goaded her from the window, she heard Nighel step closer and felt his shadow loom over her. As her throat clenched tight, she counted the seconds. “Tonight’s our last night here in Elvetica, Sakura. Go and enjoy the soft leaf beds while you still can.” She did not expect Nighel’s low voice. Nor did she expect he could sound so kind. He filled the air always with cheer and spirit, personifying every bit of the noble House Karashid she read about in her castle once. Looking up, taken over by her surprise, she blinked. Nighel stood, arms folded and face soft; long midnight hair silhouetted with a dim silver glow under the lotus lamp. Sakura’s heart clenched as she thought of an older brother she couldn’t help but miss— “You’re doing good already. For now, you can rest.” You’re doing good. Sakura never knew three words were enough to prick the tension within her shoulders and cause it to spill out. It took every remaining ounce of her strength not to crumble, not to sigh, and not to cry. Her lips trembled. A hand clapped on her back. Duran grinned. “Go on. We’ll clean up here.” Haze and blurs encroached in the recesses of her mind, and Sakura realized with stunning clarity the heaviness in her bones as she dragged herself to her feet. Another breeze blew, this time caressing her skin with an embrace of a soft blanket. “Okay,” she managed to say as she walked. Nighel stepped aside to let her pass and she gave both boys a nod. Her lips slipped into a soft, gentle smile. “Good night.” Duran stifled a yawn. “G’night.” “Good night. We’ll wake you up last tomorrow,” Nighel said, grinning. Laughing, Sakura waved as she walked off. Her thoughts slowed with every step. Trudging through the darkness, the gravity of her room and the cushions waiting for her urged her on. As the shadows of sleep crept into her thoughts, she thought back to the kitchen and the few friendships within these walls—friendships she still wasn’t sure she’d built. Perhaps, she could serve to let down a few of her glass walls, one by one.
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Consistency: 08/30/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 31, 2022
Word Count: 494 words cw: blood, death, and suic1dal thoughts Her clairvoyance is a putrid curse. No, to be more exact: the future is a curse; a miserable, dingy tunnel with no way out. Nadia loathes how she can never choose when to glimpse into that tunnel, nor can she influence, in any way, how far into the future she can see. Her visions come with a sting of a bottlesnake—it bites with a snap and its venom seeps into her blood. The images, no matter how stale or violent or bloody, never leave her mind's eye. Almost every day, since the moment she can dream, she hears the screams of a cursed generation and watches the persecution of hundreds, no, thousands of strangers she may never meet. Anyone can go insane after a hundred of those. Nadia knows that because she’s been through insanity and back, many times; it’s a cycle she can never end. She once tried to end her suffering, one stormy day three weeks before she turned ten. That day, she glimpses a particular future carved into the walls of her heart. The vision—a nightmare—shows a scene in lime-green pastures splattered with scarlet blood and a raging mob with eyes of burning hate. There, as many fail to run from the guns, pitchforks, and torches, she watches a woman run in front of a child before she crumples to the ground with a bleeding heart. Young Nadia carves that scene into her mind, memorizing the way the thick, stone-gray clouds gave way to the sun the moment the woman fell. Young, foolish Nadia thought she, too, can end things there. After all, that field was right outside their town; surely, she can go let the mob take her too? And so, her legs take her there—breathless, eyes gleaming with morbid hope. The scene, just as she remembered it, unfolds. She is crowded by screams and suffocated by the people running for escape. And there, in the midst of it all, she embraces the chaos, hoping for it to save her from the nightmares. Young Nadia sees the woman in her dreams. She sees her run. And as clouds give way to sun, Nadia watches the woman jump in front of her as a bullet pierces through her chest. As she crumples to the ground, so does Nadia. An eternal second passes. The screams, the mob, the skies, the crowds—they are all shut out. She can’t hear, can’t think, can’t breathe— But she can see the way the man in front of her kneels behind the woman. She watches as shadows form in his eyes, as if the clouds in the sky had flittered and found their home in them. And as her deafening heartbeat resounds in her ears, she sees them spark and burn. Her thoughts flash with startling clarity: My future is set in stone. I can never run away. The man screams and her world closes in, reaching, piercing, caging her in— Nadia runs, anyway. She always does.
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Consistency: 08/29/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 30, 2022
Word Count: 498 words I'm not satisfied with this, but I'm too tired from traveling to try to make it better :( Adina doesn’t know which to first entertain: the tremble in her throat aching to release or the throbbing in her chest of pain different from the cuts on her back. She just knows to ignore the images in her mind of smiles and friends and yesterday’s life. Yet, even as her eyes watch the bend and sway of tall grass across the field, Adina’s mind can only see the image in her head: of a city beyond that mountain past the hills, of the family she’s been born into. Of the life she has lost ever since she awoke in the farmer’s cottage. “Milady, please head back to the cottage.” Though Kiah’s voice surprises her in the way it cuts through the silence, Adina doesn’t flinch. She doesn’t move. “Must I really?” Her voice sounds foreign to her own ears, its inflections hollow and empty. Seconds pass before Kiah continues, words now gentler than before. “It isn’t good for you to be out this late, milady.” Milady. Adina chuckles. “What time is it?” She hears a sigh. “Approximately fifteen minutes past the nineteenth hour.” Adina can tell Kiah is beginning to be frustrated. Might she be hungry, then? “You can go ahead and eat ahead of me, you know.” “I couldn’t possibly do that, Milady.” At that, Adina tilts her head slightly back, tired eyes glancing towards Kiah. The weight is still so heavy in her chest, bearing down on her heart and refusing to let it beat life the way it used to. “I’m not exactly a lady anymore, Kiah.” Her voice slips past her throat like a whisper in the wind, and every syllable tugs at the pain she’s been trying to ignore. She feels every fiber of her being pulsing out of place as she sits on this mound. Gone are the lavish, carpeted floors, replaced by sprawling grass and soil as far as her blurring eyes can see. The night’s fog creeps slowly atop the crops of the kind farmer’s land and seeps, bleeds, into her weary mind. “Milady—” “Please, Kiah.” Adina’s throat clenches as the wind caresses the salt on her cheeks. “Just call me Adina.” Her maid—her friend—stays silent. Adina can’t tell if she stayed standing behind her, waiting, nor if she left to partake in the farmer’s steaming gruel. She can’t find it in herself to check. Her eyes remain gazing at the emerald rolls of hills and valleys cloaked in the glow of night. Adina has no strength left within her to ignore this fate she’s been led into. Or, perhaps born into. The soul within her trembles at the familiar prospect of freedom from suffocating walls and rules and ways of the lady she must uphold. Yet, the shell she has grown into, the one who made friends with kind, rare jewels of noble society, the one who has just begun to love the family who loves her— That shell caves with a realization: she can never go back.
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Consistency: 08/28/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 29, 2022
Word Count: 372 words this day was hard 💀 i really had no energy to write today The sky has long faded away, replaced by unfading, relentless pitch-black clouds that pulsed scarlet and purple. A child looks up with blank eyes, one tiny hand holding on to her mother’s as they climb the last steps to the hilltop. The ground shakes. They pause, waiting. Her mother’s hand grips hers tighter. She doesn’t wince. A moment passes with a flash of lightning. Somewhere to the west, another building falls. They press on. Breaking out of the brush and into the empty hilltop, hasty winds greet them, bringing the smell of rust and smoke that has long encompassed their journey. “Well, the world is ending,” her mother says, looking into her eyes with a smile. She places a hand on her hip. The child looks back, tilting her head in confusion. “I promised you dancing lessons last month.” The one remaining star in her mother’s eyes vanishes. She can only blink as confused unrest stirs in her small heart. “Since we can’t go find Miss Helly anymore, I’ll be the one to teach you.” Her mother takes both of her hands, smiling down at her as she leads her in a playful, childish waltz. Little steps fall into her mother's rhythm, moving as one just as they've practiced before. One, and two, and three. The world provides the song to which they dance to—lilting pitches brought by baleful gales, tempo following each quake of the ground, and all heralded by the rumbling peals of thunder. Hollow joy cuts through stale, suffocating air. As the world’s tilt slows and the ground trembles once more, the child sees a spark of a star in her mother’s eyes. Smiling, she twirls and dances and embraces the clouds in her steps. There is a promise in the child's heart that only now takes form. It’s a small little shooting star that flies across the expanse of her mind. Dancing with her mother is one she never thought of doing—back in her room embraced by wallpapers of the galaxy and stuffed bears. But what better time to do it than the day the world collapses into itself? Laughing, she dances one last time as the valley’s maw, fissures red and burning, catches up to their feet.
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Consistency: 08/27/2022
In Discord Challenges
Consistency: 08/27/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 28, 2022
Word Count: 1,278 words I didn't expect a crack, nonsense idea to give birth to this long thing hahaha also, I've forgotten how the game Ketchup works, but ehhh let me have creative liberty 😂 Irvin hurries up the carpeted marble stairs and to his study. Servants bow their heads as he passes them and his butler walks up to inform him that Lady Adina had been there for at least half an hour now. He deigns to nod, sending him off with a wave of gratitude as his mind runs over the agenda he has planned for this meeting. Today is one of the rare days they can meet to plan their movements. If they go according to schedule—guided by his plans, of course—they should be able to react accordingly to whatever awaits them in the Thanksgiving Gala. First point to consider: determine how the enemies may plant their agents disguised as castle attendants. Then, how will they seek those agents out? Second point, will they still target Lady Selene? How can they prevent that? Third, should they intervene in the first place or let this plot point in the story run its course? As his footsteps near his study, numerous plans have taken root within his mind, following the thread of his thoughts since days prior. And so, he twists the doorknob and enters, fully expecting Lady Adina and his brother Felix to be seated on the sofas in front of his desk. He should have known not to expect diligence and levelheadedness from a pair of brats, though. Upon his entrance, he watches Felix hang his head as a shadow of resignation hovers over him. Lady Adina—with one knee on the low table, one hand holding Felix’s folded hands while the other is poised in mid-air—turns her head to him and blinks. A slight flush rises from her neck but whatever embarrassment Irvin expected is washed by the grin she wears almost instantly. “Lord Irvin, you’ve arrived!” “Pray tell, what in damnation is going on here?” He hears a few servants gasp but ignores them. At a wave of his hand, the maids and aides scatter and scramble to the door, leaving their places from around the sofa set. Irvin wonders if Lady Adina had roped them in… whatever nonsense this is. Upon noticing that only the three of them are left in the study, Lady Adina straightens up. "Lord Irvin, we can't save the kingdom without first breaking the ice between us, no? Come, I shall beat you in a round of ketchup." Irvin glances at Lady Adina's pink forehands and Felix's red hands, which Felix was clutching next to his chest as he hissed. And he finds only one answer. "No." Lady Adina pouts. She moves to sit properly on the sofa—as she should have done from the start—yet pauses in doing so, an eyebrow raised. "Perhaps you've forgotten how to play it?" "I have not," Irvin presses. She sits on the cushions with a childish bounce and folds her arms. What has gotten into this girl’s mind? He sighs. Walking to his table, he pulls out a blank sheet of paper. “Now then, first on our agenda—” A snap of fingers interrupts him. “Or, you feel like you’d lose!” Felix sighs. “Adina—” “Felix, back me up here.” “No.” Irvin tries to smooth down the frown on his eyebrows with his fingers, but an ache is there and it’s growing. “Lady Adina, we have pressing matters to attend to,” he says with the coldest steel he can muster in his voice. To his bewilderment, she is not fazed. At all. “But the Gala is still in three months, right? Surely we still have time.” He frowns. “You should know that we cannot be complacent, no matter how much time we seem to have.” “I don’t worry about that, milord. I believe in you.” He is too surprised to react within the next second. “I just don’t believe in your ketchup skills.” She grins, wearing the most Cheshire smile he’s ever seen—and he likes to think he’s seen a lot, given his family’s vast library in his past life and the political masks he’s worn and faced in both lives. “Lady Adina.” Irvin stares her down, tapping his table, hoping the stare that makes lower nobles quiver would work this time. Unfortunately, covering her mouth like a perfect representation of a rude preschooler, she continues, “Yet, I digress. I wouldn’t want to tarnish the reputation of the perfect Lord Irvin Edenstein after all. I’m sure revealing to us that he is terrible at playing the simplest of games would wound his ego.” The voice in his head—the one of a sheltered child from the life he’s left behind—rises in indignation. And he couldn’t stop it from speaking. “Fine.” Felix straightens in utter confusion. He looks at Irvin like he’s grown two heads. He probably has, to be honest. “One round is enough to silence you.” Lady Adina’s face should have split from the sheer glee she is emanating. She stands and walks towards him, her hands in position: palms folded in front of her and fingertips facing him. “I’ll go first. Let's see, then.” And that they did. Three things happen within the next several seconds. Irvin follows with his hands in the starting position; Lady Adina smiles and makes the first move—which is opening her hands slightly forward; and Irvin’s hands separate before he can control them. “Let’s see, then.” Yes, he is seeing, and he can’t accept what he’s seeing. A shadow crosses his face. Lady Adina, still grinning, takes his hands in between her palms and slaps his hands. The sound echoes around the wooden walls. No one speaks. A breeze blows through the open windows. Felix looks rightfully terrified. Irvin glares into the gleaming ocean in Lady Adina’s eyes, mocking him. “Again.” Outside the confines of the study, the Edenstein Estate continues in its routine, in its usual flurry of tasks being done and servants scurrying. Yet as the silver and scarlet of hallways glow dull in the light of the afternoon, one room shines with dark mahogany walls and plain, old paintings. It doesn’t take long for Irvin to exact his victory. The breeze still blows and the sun still watches from the same position it was in when he entered the room. Afternoon songbirds continue to sing, as if in solemn wonder at the rare, foreign laughter ringing in a single room in the vast estate. Though his hands have the slightest hint of pink, Irvin feels himself preen at noticing it's much lighter than both Lady Adina’s and Felix’s reddened skin. He allows the smirk on his lips, though, as he folds his arms and tilts his head, looking down at the pouting lady caressing her skin. “You may take your seat now, milady.” She tries to hold her pout, but a tinkling laugh pours out of her lips. Prancing back to her seat, she says, “Alright.” She settles, patting down her dress and straightening her back. “But I’ll get my revenge next time. Maybe another game?” Irvin shrugs, reaching a hand behind him. “Suit yourself.” He ignores the way her smile softens while Felix’s gaze stills into quiet, curious scrutiny. And if the lightness bubbling in his chest, like that of clouds and windy summers, is any sign of satisfaction, Irvin pushes it down with a cough. “Now...” He rests a hand on the paper almost forgotten at his desk. Lady Adina and Felix turn to him—one with bright eyes and the other with a small, tired smile. “Let’s begin,” Irvin says as he leans back onto the table. He tries to bid his eyebrows to frown, but despite his efforts he can’t remove the tug on his lips. He must have been so tired lately; his wits are getting dull.
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Consistency: 08/26/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 27, 2022
Word Count: 681 words cw: swearing and mentions of death and torture For someone who'd been alive for millennia, she shouldn't be losing her cool. She shouldn't be so frustrated. Her face had always been calculated and her heart never raced, but whatever held the reins to her tears for the past hundreds of years had let go tonight—here on this blasted port in the back of the city, in front of this monster whose arrogance knew no bounds. Through the salt obscuring her gaze at the mocking stars up above, she cursed this day, his silence, and, as always, her existence. (There's a flash of a face, of family, in the back of her eyes, and a piece of her heart stirred in mourning.) “The world revolves around you?” she mumbled. It seemed to echo in the silence of the lapping waves. “Everything is all a fucking dream of yours? When you die and shit, you just wake up?” A laugh simmered in her throat and she let it out—such a garbled, heavy, and empty sound. “Fucking—” A tear streaked down her cheek. “What a fucking great way of thinking.” She was tilting closer and closer to hysteria, but none of her working nerves held her back. She looked back down, frigid and broken eyes glaring at the blank, infuriating eyes of this monster staring at her from the ground. “If this is all a dream,” her voice was beginning to scratch her throat and she hated it, “then why am I not allowed to wake up from it?” He said nothing; empty amber eyes stared straight back at her. “I thought of— I wanted that too, you know.” Despite the absence of wind, she felt herself trembling. “Maybe I heal too fast? Maybe this is all a nightmare I’ll wake up from? Or, or— This is all a fucking illusion, that you’re an illusion, that I am an illusion—” She should shut up. She should stop while she still could. And yet, she couldn’t. “But I…” Despite her strongest wills, despite all the locks she placed on memories she buried in the recesses of her mind, images and people and memories flooded right back into the forefront. “More than 2000 years ago, when I was first burned at the stake, and I didn’t die even with all the flames and all the blades they tried, I realized just how cursed I am.” Amidst the images of angry mobs, licks of flame curling up her skin, and cruel, cruel betrayal, her lips continued to move. “I can’t be injured,” she said as a cry bubbled up her throat. “What a fucking joke. A blessing? The Goddess’s blessing?” She cried and it came out as laughter. “Even when my whole home was burned, I survived. Even when the city was attacked, I survived.” She could name any mode of torture and execution, ancient or existing, precisely because she had tried all of it. “You can drown me, mutilate me, decapitate me— heck, even crush me. I will still live. Send me to the moon, I’ll still live. When all humanity perishes, I’ll still live. Let the earth fucking implode, and I’ll still live—floating and suffocating for the rest of however long eternity is.” She couldn’t see what’s in front of her anymore as she trembled, held by the neck once more by memories she tried to forget. She faced where she thought he still sat and, in a small voice, continued, “I envy you.” She couldn’t see his face, but she pressed on. “You can die.” Her throat was hoarse and her eyes ached. “I’m not allowed to die. I want to die.” Vaguely, with the remaining parts of her consciousness still grasping the present world, she felt the cold cement on her knees and the shuffling of footsteps closer to her. She had long lost the opportunity to leave this life behind. She could not hope, could not dream, could not yearn. In her millennia of living she had long lost the capacity to live—and for the rest of time's ever-flowing she would remain a hollow soul wallowing in her very existence.
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Consistency: 08/25/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 26, 2022
Word Count: 457 words Genshin's Sumeru update put me in the mood for some angst. hehe Ushered by the sunset breeze, sunlight trickled past the tiniest gaps of sand-yellowed windows. Embers of light twirled and swayed upon the solemn mulberry carpets, their every sparkle punctuated by the tiniest creaks and echoing beeps. Still, unperturbed within the shadows of dust-laden bookshelves, a three-foot robot bent over its rusty knee joints. Thick tomes fell off broken wood, termites scurried from one side to another, and tin-coated trinkets rolled onto the carpet floor, puffing up soft dust clouds as they went. It ignored everything in its search; even the steel of its four remaining fingers as they squeaked to and fro. “Henri knows Master keeps them here,” it droned, each word lilting in octaves. Clicks and beeps echoed within the room as it shoved aside more forgotten trinkets and old treasures. From its back, thrumming lowly, grimy blades ached to spin and blow despite the blinking red dot on its nape. Blink. It threw aside a mud-caked wallet. Its chest thrummed while light peeked from the spaces between books. Beep. Blink. Two fingers touched a small plastic box, sealed with the Master’s rose. Beep. “Henri has found the battery.” From its gaping steel mandible came a high-pitched thrill, punctuated by two beeps. Twisting in a silly pirouette, the robot might as well have leapt from its pile with its one working leg. Eyes skipping past book piles and rolled up carpets, the robot gazed at the door and hunkered forward. It creaked, it groaned, yet it did not hear its own body’s pleas. Limp leg dragging across gleaming floors, head hanging level with one goal in its sight, it moved one step and another. Embers followed right behind, sprinkling its steps with dust and shine. Beeps resounded past empty hallways muddled with gold and shadows. Pausing and bending in front of a newly-varnished oak door, it pushed the door open. The clicks increased, yet it pressed on. “Master, Henri is here,” it droned. Its leg dragged its body past well-swept carpets and bronze wooden floors. With a series of happy clicks, it shimmied to its Master’s bedside with the childish grace of a crippled boy. Hastily opening the rose-sealed box, two fingers brought out two batteries. The robot let out three beeping heartbeats as dimming red dots blinked. It laid the batteries by the Master’s nape. Colder batteries clinked and rolled further back. The robot’s throat clicked into a hasty, hopeful thrill—the only sounds and movements within the sunlit empty room. Its chest thrummed, stirring, waiting. If robots could wish, that was what it did. And yet, the Master did not stir; his pallor still pale as snow. Beep. Blink. “Henri will look for more.” Blink. Legs dragged forward once more as the door creaked closed.
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Consistency: 08/24/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 25, 2022
Word Count: 355 words Yannah considers the cloudy afternoon sky to be a double-edged sword. On one hand, as she scouts the skylines of East Filia, she doesn’t have to worry about the sun being too glaring or the heat too sweltering. (She chooses a loose blouse and slacks for day-scouting exactly for these reasons.) But on the other hand, the shadows the clouds make might cause her to miss important details. The paranoia always at the back of her head keeps telling her thick clouds were enough to mask a gun’s gleam. A buzz on her ear. “Yannah.” Keeping her eyes trained on an alley below her, she brings a hand up to her ear. “Yes, Grein?” She hovers for a few moments, watching for sudden movements, before moving forward. “Jin secured Invis-b and Cage-b, over at D-13—” Yannah nods to herself. Splendid work as always, Jin. “But at least two of the Wrenches are near him and they’ll soon be at his heels.” Even as he speaks, she is already pivoting towards the west, soaring higher above the tallest buildings. Above her, light peeks through the coattails of clouds. “What do you need me to do?” “Switch with Naoi and back Jin up.” “Is Haruki on the way here?” “He’s,” Grein pauses and Yannah hears the vague squeak of a swiveling chair, “a block away. You can proceed.” The wispy shadows over her recede. In the corner of her eyes, there’s a gleam. “On it.” Three gunshots from the shadows of rafters. Her eyes flicker as bullets stop at her shoulders, silver light coating each one. As Yannah hovers above the alley between Lyndon Corp and a slew of old apartment buildings, a shadow rushes below blankets and clothes left out to dry. Another gleam from an apartment. Yannah shoots forward, letting the bullet miss as she makes the glass windows shatter with a wave of her hand. “Grein,” she says, knowing he’s still listening. Her gaze locks onto the hooded man running towards the door. Silver silhouettes his legs as he pauses mid-step. “Tell Jin not to mess up before I get there.” Grein scoffs. “Sure.”
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Consistency: 08/23/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 24, 2022
Word Count: 374 words It was done. She did it. Shiho had eternity in her hands, and she finally gave the chance to live its breadth to someone else—someone she believed deserved it much more. Even as the crevice in her chest rang hollow, within its confines grew the seed of bitter, selfish relief. She wouldn't be haunted anymore by sapphire eyes that never lit up at the sight of her. She could be free now from the torment of always being the observer. She could finally be free from a millennia where each breath, each second, coated her heart in slow-burning agony. Standing by the side of the collapsing building, Shiho watched as the crowds began to thin. The remaining medics carried and ushered the last of the injured into ambulances. Shinichi, dusty and winded with worry and aching relief, stood by a stretcher surrounded by experienced hands. Ran lay motionless, sleeping. And Shiho stood by, far behind dwindling crowds. She'd had enough experience watching the two to fill a couple hundred lifetimes, but this would be one of the last. And so, for just a while more, she would be the silent shadow. Ringing sirens, crying children. Through it all, Shiho listened for the pulse of her blood slowly, surely, mixing into Ran's veins. Shinichi would never notice, Shiho thought as a harsh wind blew through the streets, blowing newspapers, leaves, and paper cups. But he would be grateful. And perhaps that was all she ever had with him, really—gratitude in companionship, camaraderie formed through a shared burden, a partnership forged by conditions. The skies dimmed as slate gray clouds hovered. Shiho looked down at her clothes, cringing at the dust and grease smudges of her designer coat. With the adrenaline wearing off, she felt the ache in her knees and the possible sprain on one ankle. A gash was also likely bleeding on her arm. Smiling, she stepped forward, welcoming the pain even as her steps slowed and her knees almost gave. The pain, after all, signified the beginning of her end, proved her freedom from however long eternity was supposed to be. She could think of her goodbye later. For now, perhaps she could accompany her best friend for the last time.
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Consistency: 08/22/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 23, 2022
Word Count: 609 words //cries I am really running low with ideas now a;sldkjf this is so ????? hahaha Fiddling with her dress’s loose threads, Ever curled up into her pillows. She trained her eyes on the piles of canvases on the dusty, stone floor, lit by the light glaring through the solitary window. The skies faded into the space between day and night; indigo and summer orange shadowing the yellow sun. Any minute now, she told herself as her heart rang hollow, as it always did once the world began to sleep. Curling her fists, she— —the cold, jade bracelets on her wrist, up and down. Her head pounded. Ever clutched her head, sitting up. “Yep, it’s time,” she mumbled. Sighing, she rolled out of bed. As the hour of golden dust, the last glimmers of the day, came into its end, she reached for the slab of wood on her bedside drawer. Messy, slanting cuts littered one side. Clicking her tongue, she turned the slab over, reached for the chisel and carved a new tally— —ringing, filling her ears. Ever’s feet stung. Looking down, her chisel laid beside her foot. There was a fresh scratch on her toe. “Hm.” She crouched, reaching for the chisel and completing her tally carving. “Day 3703 done,” she whispered. Another carving, another stroke, another day—and with each one, another piece of faded hope crumbled. Setting down the wooden slab, she turned to the window to prepare. As she passed the pile of canvases lying on the floor, mocked by the light sent from the outside world, she glanced down. Numerous marks of various lengths were inscribed on the surface of each canvas. Haphazardly piled on top of each other, Ever guessed there might be at least four of those. If she counted the wood slabs beneath them, then those would be another six. At least ten years, then, she mused. She didn’t know if the Outside still followed the same calendar, but she really had to find something else to write on or carve. Maybe the walls would do? Leaning by her window, looking down at the towns spread over the emerald hills, Ever sighed. As her heart rang hollow, she yearned once more. The sky, an infinite dome painted in shadows and fire with threads of sun and wisps of cloud; the earth beyond her tower, a haven of people and beauty and dreams. A world she once knew, until she turned nine. Ever chuckled, empty eyes trailing down to her small hands. Well, she’d been nine for ten years now, so she’d need another way to mark that cursed day. The last glimmers of sun peeked over Crown Mountain. Straightening up, Ever clenched her fists. The day’s final breaths, like water draining and flowers withering, fanned over the sky in a last surge of fiery gold—passing over her head, her arm, and her body, caressing her skin in a final mocking kiss as it faded into night The sun had set. She— —haze. Darkness filled her room. Outside, the stars hung unaware, uncaring. Dizzy. Ever felt her feet, clenched and unclenched her fists. As the first wisps of dawn broke from the earth, she blinked. Air returned to her lungs, bringing with it the iron smell of blood and dust. She scratched her cheeks, not minding the dried tears and scarlet mud. She trudged forward. Her feet, heavy and bleeding—as for whose blood it was, she couldn’t be bothered to wonder—dragged on cold stone. Standing before her pile of muddied, bloodcaked dresses, she tore her current and threw it down. Another day, another ruined dress. Bundling all the dress, she headed for the door and into the shadows. Hopefully I won’t have to wear a white one today.
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0
Consistency: 08/21/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 22, 2022
Word Count: 430 words something short 'cause I have class right after posting this lol cw: implied death (but only in the past life and very vague) She only wanted her House to rise again. They only wanted justice for her family—for her great grandmother pulled by force into this country only to be ignored by the King for generations. The Ducal House of Angelis deserved much more than this kingdom ever offered. But why— Flames licked the thinning air around Minerva as she gasped, feet stumbling over each other. Hands reached for her as she stepped past the manor gardens and towards the gate. She pushed past, scratching, shouting— Why did this happen? "Lady Angelis is over here!" "Arrest her!" Brother… Out of the gate, she turned steeply, away from the road that caked dirt into the gashes on her bare feet, and into the forest. Branches scratched her cheek and pierced her arms as she barreled past bushes and low trees. How could you? "Stop, milady!" You lied to me. Sharp, dull betrayal weighed on her chest and hampered her every step. Her breath caught as tears stung the cut on her lip. A coup d'etat was never what I desired. Her feet found the road on the other side. "Milady!" "The carriage!" Noise, piercing her ears. She looked to her right. A carriage. Yet bright lights blinded her— —it there, I promise!" Smiles. Friends. "Congratulations!" Pride. "We miss you." Who are these people? "Can't wait!" Airport. Crowds. Traffic. Where is this? "Ma'am, please be patient." "I have an appointment!" Shortcut. "Wait, miss, you don't have to walk to—" A glaring horn. Pain. Darkness— "—over there, the captain will—" "And Lord Irvin?" "Still at the manor. We have to get the Lady—" A hazy fog engulfed her mind. Rope blinded her wrists as hands guided her forward. She couldn't see anything in front of her. "—okay?" "Most likely shocked." "Ah." The ringing flittered still at her ears, grinding and scratching at her mind. My family… "Oh, damn, she's crying." "Don't look at me! We weren't trained to comfort noble ladies." My family was waiting for me. But I… And as she let the soldiers seat her on the carriage, she could only stare—at the stars masked by smoke and wispy clouds and into the world that, in just a few seconds, now screamed foreign and strange. Hollow, lost, confused, she drifted. The carriage shook as it headed towards the castle. Salty tears dropped from her cheeks, caught by her bleeding hands folded on her lap. Lady Minerva mourned for the fall of her family, but— I died. The soul of a woman within her wept for the life she lost and could never return to.
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Consistency: 08/20/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 21, 2022
Word Count: 1,106 words Me 1 hr ago: I'll just write and rush something quick Me now: What the heck happened TW: there's a battlefield so there's implied violence and mentions of blood. And the world exploded in a burst of white. He stood at the epicenter, watching as, within just a blink, General Verlynder and her army disappeared into a stark white flash. His… friends, who watched blankly as he was pinned by the arms and bound tight by the everlascent ropes, vanished too. They all were no more as he willed the destruction of the universe. In the next second, he was weightless. Held by an infinite blackness, speckled with vibrant lights at his feet and out of reach, he floated. With a quick thought, he made himself able to breathe. Before him, he watched in growing wonder as pulsating golden ripples of his power passed hundreds of bright, living spheres. He could feel its pulse reverberate within him as Otherworlds melted into a wave that in its wake left nothing. Not even dust. What remained was the perpetual gleaming of the Andala stars within the inky blanket of the Universe, watching. He floated amidst it all, in the center of the universe—fulfilled and hollow. And then, a voice. He felt it brush past his bones and flitter through his spirit before his ears heard the words it spoke. “Who are you?” They asked. “------,” he said before he knew it. “What are you?” To this, he had to pause. He still floated alone; there was nothing, no one else here. Only him, and the stars. Then who— “Why?” he had to ask. The being, whoever, whatever They were, remained quiet. Trepidation simmered in his throat, but not because this being had a presence that was particularly fearful. There was no apprehension hammering at his chest, no frigid chill trickling up his spine. No. His trepidation was due to warmth. Why were They warm? Why were They not spitting words of condemnation and curses into his ears? Why were They not gripping his spirit and snapping it into smithereens, like he knew, somehow knew, They were capable of? “I… I am human.” His lips moved, yet he wasn’t sure what he said. “But a powerful human.” These words he said with the embers of confidence still left within his heart, still untouched by this being’s chilling warmth. These words, he knew he said, and there was no lie in them. Yet, They said nothing. The stars shone in mocking laughter, dancing in their sky-locked places in the fabric of the universe as they watched him fight a battle with an unseen being. He trembled. He trembled in the face of an unknown—and this he never thought he was ever capable of. Him, the most powerful man in Grandia, undefeated, trembling at— at a spectre? What would Deyhan say? And Anar? His friends would definitely— His friends. There was a sting on his cheeks as salt mixed into bleeding scratches. And his thoughts halted. What remained was a blank. He looked towards his still-rippling power, far into the universe. For the first time since his fall by the Sheyen river, since the time he last grasped the arms of his father, last saw the smile of his sister, he floated. Lost. What was he going to do now? By his side, he had nothing, no one. The family he thought he could have had, the family who long disappeared into cavernous ocean depths whose screams and dying faces marred every inch of his nightmares, the friends he betrayed and trusted and betrayed him— Who was he, even? What was he doing? Air touched his bones. They spoke. “Yes,” They said. “It is not your place to be here,” They said in a tone so terrifying and unknown, a tone that soothed like the loving embrace of a mother he never knew or an understanding father who wielded his iron fist with the care and control his own father never had. In Their tone he heard the whispers of his sister as she shared her jokes before he headed to sleep, tucked into thin blankets with meager hopes for an earlier sunrise. The voice nudged at his heart, which he had long forgotten, and he wanted nothing more than for it to stop. It is not your place to be here. …You cannot take being here. His hands shook. Is that what They were saying? “I…” He looked at his hands, glaring at their pallor contrasted by the inky universe, glaring at the scratches and scars he neglected to heal. There is a boulder on his back. And now, he noticed it. He was exhausted. So, so exhausted. Turning back, seeing nothing but the mocking stars and an endless universe, he closed his eyes. As his tears continued to trickle, he willed his power to stop its ripple. He felt it resonate, the vibrations traveling into his core within a second, before its golden waves rippled back, pulled by unseen gravity back into him. From behind him, warmth wrapped around his shoulders. Even with his eyes closed, he could see light. I’ll go back, he thought as the sting in his cheek returned once more. Then, a painless, weightless sensation. He opened his eyes. General Verlynder and her army stood, surrounding him. Soldiers still held his arms at his back, his head on murky, blood-splattered mud. A haze occupied his mind and he registered none of the barking orders leaving the General’s mouth. He registered none of the ropes tied around his chest, pulling him towards a pole looming above piles of stone. He could only look at their faces—the General, the army, his once friends. He could only think that they were trying to kill him. Well, go ahead. He closed his eyes, remembering to breathe even as he felt energies try to break into the barriers he set within his skin. As he awaited his death, he grieved. And in his grief, he decided, willing his soul to reach within him and imprint promises on the golden, undulating power surging within his core. First, he thought as everlascent rope tied his torso unto the cold, stone pole, this power can only be born to one person at a time. And it will be passed on to someone else at any given time after the previous user’s death. Into his power’s essence he spoke laws unto it. And all other users would never use this power for harm unto the world or for selfish, nefarious motives. A smile quirked in his lips, even as the stones beneath began to smolder. He opened his eyes, passing a glance past his executors and towards the sky. Never again will there be anyone like me. He closed his eyes. Never again.
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1
Consistency: 08/19/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 20, 2022
Word Count: 314 words I'm too distracted with something else so have something very simple for today lol An opening scene to a WIP I haven't touched started yet :D My face felt warm—a little too warm, in fact. Who opened my curtains? I shifted, turning onto my other side. A cooler side, no sunlight bathing my face too early into the day. Sleep. Sleep is good. Can't think, I want to dream. Continue dreaming. Nevermind this soft bed, these thick blankets, this thin night dress… When did I have such a huge bed? Who turned off the air conditioner? I couldn't sleep. Slowly, the haze in my mind fizzled out, replaced by a ringing that increased with each second I continued to muse. Grumbling, I brought my fingers to my head, hoping to ease the ache behind my eyes. My other hand reached for my side drawer—where I know my alarm clock is—touching surfaces blindly. Why does everything hurt so much, anyway? Did I drink? I wasn't anywhere last night. My fingers hit my lamp and I winced. Crawling, forcing my awfully sore body to move forward, I grasped… nothing. I blinked. Blurs, still too many blurs. Stale gray, salmon wallpapers, cream floors, and a misty, painful haze. When did I change my room decor? The ringing in my ears increased and my head pounded, as if an awfully cruel, sadistic brat in my head gripped my brain and squeezed it like clay. I couldn’t even sit up. The blurs increased as I felt salt on my cheeks. Ringing. Pain. Loud. Bright. Where— Why— “My lady?” A soft voice. Who? I shut my eyes, curling my head into my pillow as the pain spiked. A gasp, rushing footsteps, and a hand on my back. “My lady? Are you okay?” No. And who? Me? My head continued to pound, putty in the hands of an unseen ghost. And through the blurs and the lights I opened my eyes— “Who are you?” Hoarse, like pin pricks in my throat, my voice was definitely not mine.
1
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Consistency: 08/18/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 19, 2022
Word Count: 553 words Breakfast is an optional meal for New, since he’s made it a habit to always manipulate “satiated” as the effect of his rising from bed. Dinner is easily negligible, depending on his mood. If there were more people than usual trying to trespass the boundaries of his forest, or if Sakura and the rascal Guardians had decided to ransack his history tomes again, or Otherworlders had somehow, again, wound up in his forest—then he’ll need something to eat and drink to stave off the headache. Lunch is a different matter; he never neglects lunch. And each time, he prepares his meal according to what’s available. Today, he has fresh produce, harvested from the garden at daybreak. Bread from the other day is still fresh—of course, he made it so—perfect for a quick sandwich. He had somehow found himself in a good mood, stirring his bowl of thinroot and tomato soup. Now, if only things remained like that. Except, this brat has popped up on his doorstep today. Again. “I like it here. Your food is great,” the brat mumbles between bites, bread crumbs occasionally falling from his lips. Sat across from him, New scoffs, taking a small bite from his sandwich. He won’t exactly call it “great” when he could easily alter the results every time. Did the crops turn bad, maybe because of pests, rain, or faulty soil? With a wave of his hand and a minuscule amount of energy, the crops will be fresh or the soil fertile and none of those factors ever happened. “Mr. New, what do you put in your soup?” the brat asks, already done with his sandwich and moved on to his soup. New scowls at the red lining the kid’s lips and the breadcrumbs that dot his table. “Nothing unusual,” New says, face back to impassiveness. "Brat, clean up after you're done and leave." "My name is Lucas." The brat has the audacity to whine. Sometimes, he wonders why the brat keeps coming here—a small cottage hidden within Crystal Glade, away from the town, an object of myths and tales the mothers use to scare their children. He can easily wave his hands and the factor of "Lucas entered the glade" would never have happened. Still, he knows, the kid would keep coming, forcing his way through the trees until he found his way by his door again. He can also make it so "Lucas never left the town", but there are too many factors that he may accidentally touch, forgo, or cause. And so here he is again: letting a brat eat at his table in a cramped wooden cottage by a vegetable garden. Scattered clouds pass over the glaring sun. The light from his window softens to a faint caress of marigold, dancing with specks of dust. He lets silence rest at the table; he prefers that after all. The rustling of forest leaves, wind batting at his window, a chorus of birds singing on tree branches and pecking at his plants— "Oh right, Mr. New, there are really cool visitors in town again!" The brat pushes apart the thin silence, grin crooked. New can see a missing tooth. "They're from another world." As New pauses in his bite and welcomes the tendrils of a forming headache, he plans his dinner for tonight.
1
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Consistency: 08/17/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 18, 2022
Word Count: 721 words A sort of sequel to my Day 8 (Twilight) entry. CW: Few mentions of blood and several of fire. But all minor. The hallways have blended into each other, cracked mauve walls into crimson carpets and thick, acrid smoke. Deinna tries to think, but she can only breathe. "Stop, Andorias!" Pain surges up her feet as the grazes on her skin continue to bleed. Her throat is dry, but she presses on. "I can't—!" His grip on her wrist remains strong. "Andorias, I order you to—" "You're not ordering anyone," he says, voice low. Deinna can't see his eyes and it frustrates her to no end. "Not anymore." "I…" Even as her feet stumble to catch up, she continues to pull back, trying in vain to escape Andorias's grip on her wrist. "I'm still—" "They destroyed the crown, did you not see?" he continued and Deinna hates how he sounds so calm, so collected, how can he be so— "You weren't crowned Queen, Deinna." "I…" Andorias stops them at the corner of the castle, in the shadow of the pillars leading to the Queen's garden. Away from the smoldering throne rooms, the burning flags, the screaming, and the blood on nightstone walls. Letting go of her wrist, his hands find their way to her shoulders. Deinna doesn't meet his eyes. "But I… I can still be a princess." "Deinna." "I won't run away." "Do you want to die?" Her voice hitches and she grabs his cape, tries to punch through his armor with a trembling fist. "My duty—" "Do you really want to?" She hates how she can't speak, hates the shaking of her knees. She remembers the surge of utter relief the moment he arrived in the throne room, and she curses herself for her cowardice; for the terror that wrenched her soul at the sight of gold-sleeked armor, ice spears, and cold, burning eyes. She loathes that it's his mere presence, dragging her away from the ruined throne, that returned her ability to think and breathe. He holds her cheek and lowers his head to face her directly. "Deinna, the Minister is gone. Your sisters, the King, the Queen—they're gone. The city is ruined." Her voice is breaking and, in an attempt to fight back a sob, she can only murmur. "I know that already. You don't have to—" His voice softens. "The scepter was destroyed." In the trembling of his hand on her skin she feels true remorse. "House Eigenricht holds no more power over the throne. Deinna—" Stop, Deinna wants to say. She closes her eyes. "You are not a princess anymore." The last fragments of her glass courage, being held by the flimsiest of threads, shatter. Deinna's knees betray her as Andorias catches her, wraps her in his arms. Her sobs mar his bloodied and torn armor, muted by the cape he wraps around her head. "Come with me, Deinna. You don't have a duty holding you back anymore." Andorias whispers by her ear. And despite the tender caress of his voice she continues to break. "You can be just Deinna now." In the shadows of the burning castle, the two embrace, tightly, hopelessly, in a moment of stolen respite. There is no silence, no gentle wind. The battlefield continues to burn and it's their side that lies in its ashes. The moon is gone, the clouds cover the stars—there is no light for the citizens of the kingdom save for the flames of their demise. Yet, even through her shattered spirit and the acid despair settling within her mind, Deinna knows Andorias's energy may not hold Delay for long, knows the moment he has to replenish energy the enemies would appear at their side in the blink of an eye. They can't stay long here. Passing one last look at her home, at the smoldering half of what's left, a shadow falls on her countenance. "Let's go." She can’t hear her own voice. He needs no further prodding. Taking her hand, Andorias commands his energy to surge once more and take hold of the rushing soldiers set on their trail. Deinna watches with hollow eyes as flames, dust, and stones hang mid-air, falling imperceptibly slow. Castle Elleria, Jewel of Ezkandor, stands coated in the shadows of midnight, lit only by defeat's scarlet glow. She carves the image into her mind—her castle, her home, as it takes its final breath. Following the shadows, they flee into the night.
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1
Consistency: 08/17/2022
In Discord Challenges
Consistency: 08/16/2022
In Discord Challenges
Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ
Aug 17, 2022
Word Count: 910 words tw: mentions of death and blood (but nothing graphic) I hope this counts for the prompt because my brain is soup and I don't know if this made sense 😭 A lover's spat, misunderstood intentions, deep grudges, then murder. Shinichi was used to cases that hid tragedies in their core, yet… "If only you remembered…" "Was everything we went through all for nothing?" He laid his forehead on the car window, blank eyes gazing at Coral and sunset skies reflected on the bay. Memories. Such a mundane triviality was a concept he never deigned to ponder on outside of cases, but maybe such abstractions were what drove him to finish this case early. It may have hit a little too close to home. As the car sped through the bridge, he watched. Smiles, a proposal by the cliff, scattered roses along dimly lit pathways, blood, wrecked cars, stark white hospital walls, the first movement of pale fingers, a doctor's stern face— He breathed, clutching his head to fight the stinging ache. Too close. "Um, sir? Are you okay?" said the driver, a new addition to the force. He had young eyes and good intentions, but Shinichi didn't think either yes or no could answer the man's question. He waved a hand. "I'm fine." Leaning back, he gazed once again out the window, carefully holding the reins to his thoughts lest they wander again. The sun still hovered over the city skyline, painting glass panes in glaring gold. A mantle of violet and faded mauve, waiting for dusk, spread over their heads—and Shinichi preferred its darkness over the luster of the city. Tokyo glowed like a masterpiece in the hands of Monet and Pissarro. Beautiful, if he were to muse. The ache simmering at the back of his head just won't cease though, and it wasn't because of resting his head on the car window or staring too hard at the blurs of strangers. His phone buzzed. It took a few seconds for him to close his eyes and fight lethargy enough to lean back. Taking out his phone, he pressed it to his ear. As the bay glowed ruby and the sky rouge, the ring on his finger gleamed. The door's creaking echoed through the shadows of the mansion as he slipped inside. Routine settled in: hang his coat by the door, replace loafers with soft slippers, and head towards the library. That was where she always waited. He made sure his footsteps were heard even before he knocked, yet only when he entered and stepped onto the wine red carpets did she look up from her book. "Welcome home." Shiho smiled softly. "I didn't hear you coming. Have you eaten?" Under the old chandeliers he could see her pallor, the slightest bit ashen. Maybe he ought to remind her to rest more often. Banning her from the lab wasn't enough. He smiled weakly. "Not yet, have you?" With quiet steps, she walked to his side. "No, but I can go prepare a quick meal." With the smallest quirk of her lips, she added, "We both know who's the better cook." That made him chuckle. "Thanks, but you stay here. I'll prepare it and take our dinner here." She stared into his eyes, hand wavering before his arm, yet many words remained unsaid. Shinichi took her hand and caressed the calluses on her fingers. As his mind slowed and the nerves within him gradually loosened, words from the case once again flashed in quick succession. He dropped her hand. "I'll be quick." Not letting her speak, he turned away, a fist in his pocket and a hand on his head. He forced his mind to remain blank even as he walked to the kitchen and prepared a quick batch of scrambled eggs and toast. Shiho was right; between them, he was the one not to be trusted in the kitchen. At least, he had to learn how to cook since the accident. And there his thoughts spiraled once again. It couldn't be helped; within their home there were too many memories they shared. Every room and corner glimpsed so many seconds of their story. In the kitchen, he remembered her tirades over badly burnt toast and a ringing smoke alarm. In his study, he remembered sleepless nights poring over case details as she offered her thoughts between sips of tea. Shinichi had made too many memories with Shiho since the day they decided to restart their lives together. And he promised, many times, that his presence would be by her side every step of the rest of their ways. That no matter how cruel things get, no matter the walls that bear down on their lives, he would hold her hand and replace the drab grays of her past with ocean blues of a better tomorrow. And so, as he walked towards the library, a tray of their dinner in his hands, he reiterated in his head his promise to never give up. With his shoulder, he pushed open the doors. He would persist. Shiho looked up from her book, on her face a small smile. "Ah, welcome home." His chest ached. "I didn't hear you coming." She put down her book and raised her arms to meet him. "I could've prepared a small dinner." Shinichi walked towards her in silence as he fought to keep his practiced smile on. Yet, as he met her soft steel eyes, watching him, he let himself into her arms and fell, weak, onto her shoulder. If, for memories to be made, he'd have to start over at every moment, then so be it.
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Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ

Jyll ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ

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