A/N: This chapter was really awkward... I really just want my characters to leave the island and for little kids to disappear. I can't write bonding experiences very well. -sigh-
Chapter three: Excuses, and Nightmares
"Well?" I glared and he looked at me innocent.
"It left without me, I fell asleep, and probably because of all that alcohol you shoved down my throat!" I could see his dark blue eyes slim to slits, and a small smirk grace his mouth.
"So you're blaming your own incompetence on me!" I snarled in anger.
"You shouldn't have got me drunk, I'm 12 years old!"
"I'm 15, suck it up, you didn't drink that much!" I looked around and noticed people staring nosily and I shut up deeming the argument not important enough to be mothered, or caught by a disapproving elder. I scowled at them, and then scowled at Naze, whose expression was of a satisfied cat who caught the canary. I had the urge to hurt him suddenly. He did not win this argument.
A couple of weeks had passed; I learned that Naze may not be as innocent as I once thought. He wakes up screaming in the middle of the night. His nightmares it seems aren't from some childish fear either.
His feverish, horrified mumblings and terrified whispers speak of blood, armies, and murder. Tonight was worse than some of the others.
"Please no!" He begged eyes unfocused. He clung to my shoulders and arms fearfully. His eyes were wide, eye whites showing.
"Stop them, stop them please!" He screamed, and thrashed in my arms. I pinned him in concerned that he would hurt himself or me. Tears streamed down his pale ashen colored cheeks.
"Why! Why!" He howled, not in a questioning tone, but an accusing one. Then in a scarier experience that I'd ever gone through, he went limp, a pained expression on his face. I let loose his pinned limbs, and his hand moving slowly rubbed against an area on his side, like he was making sure it was still there. I pulled up the shirt he insisted he sleep in and stared at the scar I already knew was there.
The scar tissue was shiny at least a couple of years old, and ran an expanse from his hip to just below his armpit.
"What happened to you?" I whispered, and he didn't respond, already deep into another sleep, this one thankfully peaceful. Absently I reached up and fiddled with my necklace. What if those who swore to protect you never came? I closed my eyes and laid back down.
It was raining, so Naze didn't have an excuse involving sunburn for getting out of work. Which he got quite easily, it was rather funny seeing him as red as a lobster, although hearing him whine about it made me want to gag him once or twice. It seemed silly but we went to the waterfall, he loved it so much. I haven't shown him the cave yet, it seems too special even though I've only known Naze for a year.
I eyed Naze carefully as he went into some of the deeper waters, I didn't want him to drown. I wasn't satisfied with his swimming skills, and worried his small muscles wouldn't keep him afloat as long as I'd like. He grinned at me and spit a mouthful of water in my direction teasingly. The little brat didn't know who he was dealing with. I grinned and dived into the water. Let's see how well he swims under water, after I pull him down by the ankles.
Two years since I've met Naze and he still hasn't learned not to mess with me in the mornings. I gripped his wrist and shot a groggy but intense glare at his sheepish but smirking face. I then felt something slimy run down my scalp.
"Run." I sneered, although I felt some slight amusement. Still, I was going to beat his ass and throw him to the mothering ladies of the village. He should have fun being tied down and made to act like a proper young gentleman. I laughed evilly and Naze had a horrified look on his face and he jumped through the trap door of the tree shack.
I got up and raised a hand to the slimy substance in my lovely blonde hair. It was some not so lovely bird crap… Yes, I was going to beat his ass black and blue. How dare he treat his older brother like this! Where is the respect little brothers are supposed to have for their perfect, handsome, genius older brothers!
Naze was 15, same age as I was when I met him for the first time. Naze clung to my shoulders as I swam through the water he was small despite that he had been doing manual labor for two years now. I figured it was as much because of genetics as it was simply the fact he didn't grow up in the right environment. I slowed in the water careful of my passenger. Naze was precious to me as the old woman was I realized. I wonder if this affection I had for Naze was what she had for me.
Naze always missed the cruise ships that came to dock; he avoided them like a child would monsters in the dark. He refused to go into town when they were, and I got the sense that whatever his life was before was pretty bad, and he really didn't want to go back. I liked to think that I saved him from the fate he had by watching over him. I think he likes to think I'm his savior too, but for different reasons.
I pulled Naze and myself into the cave behind the waterfall and brought him deep into the caves where the crystals were set a glow. I smirked at his awed face and made my seat against a wall while he explored with his excitement of the place so high.
Naze was dressed in loose shorts and a shirt that seemed to big no matter that it had fit that morning. Honestly, though it was probably his frame.
"Naze," I looked at his fascinated face, "here a bond between brothers." I pulled off my precious necklace one given to me by older brother in reality. It was time to give it to my own baby brother. Naze looked at me studying my face. He smiles softly and took something out of his pocket. It was a necklace too.
"For you too," He suddenly looked serious, "but not a bond between brothers. Family can betray you. Our own special bond; just the two of us, one that makes us closer and," He bit his lip and blushed, "It'll be unbreakable!"
I nodded and we exchanged the necklaces each of us putting the others on. The purple glowing stone around his neck gleamed. The necklace he gave me was sliver chain and at the end was an amulet in the shape of dragon that surrounded a blood red stone. Runes covered the dragon's scales.
I hugged him tightly. This was Naze, and he was mine to protect and care for.
"If something happens," I said softly, and he turned to look at me with a concerned expression. "If something happens we'll meet here. This is our emergency spot. Okay? I know you worry." I smiled and he gave me a relieved expression in reply. I wouldn't ask why he was so worried. I would just accept that it was something to be worthy enough to worry about.
"Thank you." Naze came over and hugged me straddling my lap, I felt him hide his tears in my chest. I knew he wasn't crying just because I gave him a place to hide. Perhaps it was because I gave him a safe home, or maybe an acting older brother-like figure, or just a protector. I pet his hair comforting him in a way that didn't require me to speak. I always sucked at speaking in these types situations. Naze usually didn't cry, or break down, for him I'd be nice.
Naze walked bored behind me carrying a basket of the regular jewelry. We were in town to do the usual twice weekly dropping off sea-shells. The last cruise ship left yesterday and there wasn't another one expected for about a week. I smirked as I heard grumbling.
"Why am I carrying everything? I mean gods, you're the muscles here, me the brains!" He huffed rolling his eyes.
"Just because you had some snobby tutors as a child does not mean you're smarter than me lobster." I laughed lightly.
"Stop bringing up the fact I get sun-burn easily as an insult! It's not funny!" He screeched. He sounded rather bad on the ears; I wondered what happened to that lovely sounding voice he had when I first meet him. Oh yeah that's right, it died when I got to know him.
"Lobster," I stated off-handedly, then ignored whatever came spewing from his mouth in retaliation afterwards. I then drifted into Mr. Nona's shop, smiling at the amused look on Mr. Nona's face looking at the pair me and Naze made.
I lay on the bed in the personal bedroom of mine in Mr. Nona's shop. Naze was downstairs helping Mrs. Nona peel potatoes; poor kid… wasn't as sneaky as me when it came to running away. I got up and decided to take pity on him. I walked down stairs, and grabbed his arm when Mrs. Nona wasn't looking and pulled him out through the back door. We jumped over a small fence and started walking down the cobbled street.
"Thanks," He said relieved, he flexed his stiff wrists. Peeling potatoes was harder on the hands for some reason than most anything. I found it rather amusing.
"Sure, no problem, I can't have my baby Lobster getting tough and stringy. He wouldn't be any good to eat when he's grown then." I teased, and loved the way his face reddened and his mouth sputtered nonsense.
"You… you… Baby chicken!" he glared at me heatedly, and I stared at him in shock.
"What? Why am I baby chicken?" I didn't know whether I should be amused or just chalk it up to him being strange…
"Because," he said smugly "if you look around no one else has blonde hair except the baby chickens. You're a mutated baby chicken." He smirked at me and I felt my eye twitch.
"That… You… Brat…" I sputtered, and then I got this ominous feeling. In the distance down the street towards the harbor that met the sea I heard a scream. I looked at the still smirking Naze, and watched as his smug face melted into horror at something behind me. I felt something slam into the back of my head; absently I noted it was a medium sized stone. I felt blood dribble down my scalp and the world seemed to lose its balance. No, I realized, it was me that lost the balance of the world.
Why is this happening! It's not supposed to be like this. This is not right! Not right. NOT RIGHT…
I had enough sense to pull Naze into a secluded alley. I leaned against the wall of a shop holding my head. I kept Naze deeper into the alley. I glanced up dizzily and saw blurry big objects flying in the sky. Not mechanical small fighting ships, but creatures large enough to pick up a cow and carry it off. They were dragons, red, orange, and yellow dragons. I leant against the side of the building as my legs trembled. Dragons… dragons… my heart beat sped up and my chest hurt adding to the intense pain my head was already feeling.
Dragons… blood gleaming, dripping from teeth. Terror, so much terror… It's not real, why would it be real. There's no reason, not logic… I'm not frozen in fear. I'm not… I'm a hero.
More screaming was heard, and the smell of smoke struck my nose with a daunting prospect. The dragons were breathing fire on the village mostly made of wood. I turned to look with my blurry gaze at the street as the girl who ran the bread shop ran past, a man I'd never seen before carrying a sword ran after her. He stuck a knife into her back. She screamed and I felt something press into my side from the opposite direction of the appalling scene.
Death… there was no fighting it. All of them, everybody, everything… death dripping surrounded by screams I can see IT! No easy death… it's not real. Why would it be real... There's always a choice… I will not die!
I turned my heavy feeling body to see Naze pressed against my side. His face was etched into a petrified expression. Naze's lips were blue, and his skin a pale color. His dark blue eyes were dripping trickles of water down his face.
He was by my side... by my side. I promised to protect him. The sobs are making it hard to breath. I can't see! There's something obscuring my vision… Its blood, blood is in my eyes. It scares me… it's not my blood. I can't breathe. I can't breathe.
"Breath..." I whispered and I wondered why my voice sounded so far away. I shook my head. I needed to… I needed to protect Naze, I had promised to protect him. I glanced at the scene in the street. The man who had killed the girl had left the knife in the girls back. It was a weapon I didn't have. In fact I didn't have a weapon at all. I felt a sick feeling looking at the girl.
It was just a slender blade, sliding across the fragile skin. It was the end. So simple, it was a tool that was not in my control. It would be used against me.
"Naze..," I whispered "Stay here." I pulled his clinging in shock body and pressed him so he was sitting curled into a ball on the ground in the alley. I was going to get the knife.
One by one, in front of everyone, slaughtered. It's the way of the world. They're bodies lay haphazardly, like puppets with their strings cut, they bleed out, the white sand sucking it in, staining it only for a little while. The bodies weren't supposed to look like that, the blood wasn't supposed to disappear like it was unimportant. They were supposed look like they were sleeping, not like death was an agonized state.
I walked as I couldn't focus or balance myself to run to the girl and the knife. I reached down and the world tilted dangerously, and my legs gave out. On my knees I pulled the knife out. My grip felt clammy, and the girl looked to weird. I thought the dead were supposed to look peaceful, like they were sleeping. She just looked like she was in pain. Her mouth was gaping into the dirt sideways. Her dark red hair was less glossy looking than I remembered and her brown eyes which had always looked like they were laughing against her tan skin looked dull, not even sad… just… she looked horrible. The skin visible was ashen. The blood soaking her blue dress made it look like a dark purple. I reached out a shaky hand and closed her eyes. Now she looked like she was having a bad dream.
I wanted to close my eyes, but I didn't have the nerve to look away. I didn't have the control of my body, of my mind to not be there.
I turned the knife gripped into my shaky hands towards the alley where Naze was. His body was curled tight into the shadow of the building. He turned then to look at me. His face looking so much younger than I remembered being. His eyes which were wide before in shock suddenly got wider.
I don't want to hear it, not see it, and not be here. The dragon is staring at me. I'm next. I'm next. Next… next… next… I refuse to accept this. Hero's don't die like this. Hero's try and fight back but I can't move, I'm too terrified. I want to try, but I can't, so I don't want this to happen. I can't do ANYTHING!
"No," he mouthed horrified. Why was he mouthing no? I felt something grip my back. Giant talons dug into my flesh. The dragon flapping its wings above me made no sound. In fact, the world was silent. I should move I thought, stab it, and go back to Naze. I wanted too, but at the same time when I moved my heavy head to look at him I couldn't see him the world was to blurry.
I want to pretend that I can't feel the talons digging into my skin. I want to pretend it doesn't hurt, I want to be numb.
I was in the air, and all my blurry vision could see was smoke. I couldn't feel the talons digging into my midsection. I couldn't feel much at all. There was a dull pain behind my eyes. It was easily ignored though, it wasn't important feeling. Just a small headache I thought. Blood dripped into my eyes.
It's eating me. My flesh is being ripped apart it has a bit of my intestines hanging from its mouth. I want the ground to open up and swallow me up. I want to fall into unconscious darkness, but I haven't, I'm left in this torture.
Then I was falling through the air, my body felt like a rag doll. It hit a tree I heard a crack; I wondered if it was the tree or me that made the sound. I hit the forest floor the dragon, a blurry like the rest of the silent world, seemed to be yellow with black eyes. It leaned over me; its nose at the end of a slender snout gave off tendrils of grey swirly smoke. Teeth like a crocodiles jutted from the mouth. A tongue black, large and snake-like with a forked end slithered out, and took a taste of blood on my face swiftly. The tongue was warm and dry, but has a rather soft feel to it. It was weird feeling, I felt like it should have been slimy, or rough feeling.
The dragon stops eating me, it grins at me. It is stupid looking, there's no reasoning with this murderer. Funny how I always imagined dragons to be intelligent, graceful beings, but I'm wrong. I should be expecting it now along with failure.
The dragon flinched back after tasting my blood and seemed to study me. It looked intelligent, not like a smart dog intelligent, but human like.
"You tassste of the sssea," it hissed "like the magic'sss of the deepsss. Of the ssserpent with scalesss of black and voicesss of Nereusssita." It looked fearful, the smoke from its nose increasing and becoming a darker shade.
In my fear, agony and pain, I was selfish all I thought about was my wellbeing… I was no hero. Hero's save other people they keep promises. I wanted to burn in hell, I wanted to be punished, wanted to feel agony. Then I wanted to be gifted with an option, a power to save them all.
"Naze," I whispered, the dragon was going to eat me. Who was going to protect Naze? The dragon touched my bloodied midsection with its snout. It opened its jaws a foul stench of burning flesh overcame my nose, and the dragon let out white flame and my blurry world finally came to an end in a sea of white.
Plot line accelerated: 18th Birthday inheritance has been ignored and will be gifted now with acceptance. This is due to bodily stress, threat of death, and forceful nature of dragon magic. Accepting now will also include a language gift, gifted from dragon tongue, and some unmentionable at this time side effects. Do you accept? Please mentally state yes or no, as currently your throat is charred shut and is unable to verbally answer.
Yes… I whispered in my thoughts. The burning white slowly disappeared and faded into a cold black. Pupil-less dark blue eyes similar in shade to Naze's stared at me unblinking. The gaze felt dull, bored, like it had no interest in anything. After a while the eyes disappeared. After that, the feeling of being watched disappeared as well.
I felt alone then. Trapped in a sea of cold darkness, it was misery. Perhaps this was what hell feels like. I was unable to move.
A pen-prick of something in the distance of black nothingness started to come close. It was blurry, but not like the blurriness I had earlier because of head injury. This blurriness seemed to be like a shroud that covered the thing. It kept coming closer and finally it seemed to surround me.
I jerked trying to get away in horror. It was a cloud of blood. I choked on it as it was forced down my throat, into my eyes, ears, and into the pores of my skin. I wanted to convulse, spasm, at my torment. I wanted to scream, beg for this torture to end, but I couldn't I was paralyzed, crippled, debilitate to react. Then everything fell into a dull almost unfeeling ache. My affliction seemed unimportant, everything seemed unimportant.
Laughter echoed in the thick cloud of red, probably from outside it. It sounded happy, but I couldn't bring myself to care, just to note it dully. It sounded familiar though.
I wanted Naze to punish me for breaking my promise to him. I wanted everybody I grew up with to punish me for not having the strength to save them I wanted for the stains of their blood to hurt me like the acid I mentally could feel sliding across my skin.
"You're a Baby Chicken! You're a big mutated Baby Chicken!" So familiar it sounded, so far away lost. Sharp warmth brushed against my chest. My purple crystal necklace I wondered. No, a hand touched it, and I wondered when I got control of my limbs back, the shape was different, textured and unsmooth in places. It was warm not like a stone. Wait… there was a stone underneath the textured… metal I realized. The chain was silver and so was the dragon on the amulet. It surrounded a red stone. The stone was the color of fresh blood. The eyes of the dragon were red. They should have been blue though… like Naze's. It seemed like a dragon necklace given to me by Naze should have blue eyes, like the dragon that…
Naze! I looked through the cloud trying to find him. That was why the voice sounded familiar. I shook off the shroud of dullness that covered me. The pain came back, but what the hell… It was only pain. Naze was more important that a little pain.
I wanted somebody, anything to save me.
"Is the Baby chicken lost?" The voice mused. "To think I thought you could protect me…" It said slyly, but underlining the tone was sadness, abandonment, cold resentment.
Was this really Naze? Naze was sweet, he may tease but this voice was…
"Cruel? Older? Not afraid? Not hiding behind a sheepish smile? Why I'm almost like you." The voice like Naze's whispered heartlessly, and it sounded like it was next to my ear, but there was nothing there to whisper it.
A figure appeared in front of me, about 12 feet away. It looked like Naze. It was dressed in white expensive looking ceremonial robes; black runes I recognized from the dragon necklace adorned it. The Naze look alike has longer black hair, it reached to the bottom of his back, and its silky waves were held back white gold brackets, red stones decorating the gold. The red on white reminded me of blood stains.
The Naze look alike also had one major difference. Red eyes without pupils gleamed maliciously at me. He smiled, made a gesture with his hand and it looked similar to a wave.
"Hey there," He said, white teeth flashing, the teeth seemed sharper than they should be, but not obviously so, "Don't you think you should wake up now?"
"I don't understand..." My eyes widened.
"You don't need too." He smirked and he snapped his fingers.
I wanted somebody to wake me up from this hell. I wanted to pretend this was just a game. That is was all just a bad dream. I wanted to WAKE-UP.
Scary? Disturbing even a little? Did I give anyone goosebumps? :3
So.. predictions? Come on I want to hear!