Thursday, September 6, 2012
The small amount of survivors.
Strangely enough; it's like the world goes to a state of rewind. Amidst the ruins; skeletons; broken railways, nature made its way anyhow, resisting the stench of death and the sorrow lingering in the air. Trees growing at the strangest of places, pushing away things that are on its way to growth.
Aeda sat on an old, rusty vehicle that no longer bears its original form and stares at her surroundings.
Little houses made from the remaining parts of broken buildings contain families or individuals who needed a place they belong to; a home. Ex-soldiers who guard the area, and women gathering at the center of the area; cooking what nature offered.
The sky is not as blue as they were before for dust and dirt fill the air and the clouds are only mirroring the colour of the water on earth. However, the sky is wider now; compared to before, when buildings were so tall you feel like an ant trapped in a maze and the top of the buildings is the sky for you.
Aeda regretted nothing. She never regretted living even though she lost so much during the war and the storm. Because she had always understood the meaning of "you reap what you sow", and it is only natural that humans get what they deserve.
Nature is cruel, violent, unpredictable in so many ways. Its wrath surpasses human's knowledge; its strength surpasses human's ability and concept of protection.
But nature is also kind; for after what humans thought is the end; is actually a beginning.
Aeda stares at the buds that will soon bloom into beautiful flowers. They grow unhesitatingly from the soil that was created from dead bodies. One end; is one beginning. Nature calls, nature takes, nature gives--
a second chance.
Saturday, July 28, 2012
"Well, that's one way to describe--this." Aurora gestured her eye to the trees in the forest. It has gotten much more silent than before, as if the animals were hiding underground. Yet, even the ground felt cold. Astrid got down from her horse and sat on the nearest giant tree root. "Are you sure about this, Aurora? Father might already find out that we ran away."
"We didn't run away, Astrid. We're just trying to find out what's happening in the forest."
Astrid raised an eyebrow,
"Without his permission."
Placing her palm on the tree barks, Aurora listened to her sister; "At this rate, it might be difficult for us to find out what's going on. So far, the attacks only happened at night. Right now, the sun is high above our heads. I don't think we'd find that creature."
"Whoa, whoa!" Aurora countered; "Sister, I do want to find that creature, and I do agree with you on that, but I'm not really looking for the creature exactly. I'm looking for some tracks. You don't expect us to enter the forest at night without even knowing what we're dealing with, do you? If we have some tracks, or clue on what this creature can do or what it looks like, at least, we might find some chances on finding its weakness."
Astrid stared at her sister. "How come you're so smart and detailed in hunting but when it comes to studying literature and history you make our ancestors squirm in shame?"
And at that moment, something caught her eye. The tree next to the one which root she was sitting on, it's bark was somehow scratched, three parallel lines visible against the dark brown colour of the tree. "Does that seem like a clue?" She pointed at the mark. Aurora looked closer, trying to trace any particular information passed down from Samuel during their past hunting sessions. Examining the width and length of the marks, she knew whatever that made that mark is not a human. The line is too wide for a sword or a knife, and there would be no reason to actually leave three marks, unless the weapon comes in a set.
Claws. Big, sharp claws. Strong enough to leave a mark quite deep, tall. The mark was made at the same height as the girls, and Aurora assumed that to leave an upward pattern, the creature only have to lift its arms up to its chest. And apparently, she couldn't recall any teachings from her brother about creatures like this. She knows that, at least; the creature is fast, strong, tall, and have sharp claws. Adrenaline pumping in her veins; she couldn't help but wanting to hunt, right at that moment; but she couldn't risk only one thing.
Aurora looked around for any possible traces, but there was nothing. No footprints, no tracks of broken twigs or unusually torn leaves. "Let's go back." Aurora suggested. Astrid thought her sister looked different, but she doesn't ask. She's leaving the questioning session after they get back safely.
"Quick, Aurora, we have to hide these." Both of them took off Samuel's armor and hid them with their weapons in the haystack. Making sure no one is around, Aurora sat down on a small stack of hay. "What did you find out?" Astrid asked. Choosing her words carefully, Aurora answered. "Big, dangerous, with claws sharp enough to shred a human's flesh in one blow."
"Do you think there are other marks like that?"
"I'm not sure, but if we could do something about it, informing the general is a good step. If the soldiers are going to stay in the forest until the creature has been caught, the undertaker will run out of coffins. Well, that is even if their bodies can be recovered."
"But Aurora! What are we going to tell him, huh? Good afternoon, general. We sneaked out of the castle and found a clue that the creature might just have giant sharp claws? Aurora!"
"General Wilhelm, the king requests for your presence in the dining hall." A soldier reported. Wilhelm nodded and left the meeting, approaching the doorway, until a pair of hands pulled him into a dark, narrow space. His reflexes instantly aims for his sword, but another pair of arms stopped him. "Shhh! General, it's us!! It's us!!!" Aurora whispered. Shocked, he calmed down almost immediately at the presence of the princesses, and bowed his head. "What--"
His question was cut off quickly. "Did your men find any traces, or marks, or clues in the forest?" Aurora asked in haste.
"FIND THE PRINCESSES!" A soldier's shout was heard, followed by multiple replies from other men and workers
"Oh, good heavens! Father found out! General, answer me!" Aurora pulled Wilhelm deeper into the darker side of the corner. "Wait. Alright. I don't know what's going on, princess. But so far I have not received any report on visible clues or marks left by the creature. Even the bloodhound lost trace of the victim's blood. Some of our dogs ran away, as if they were terrified by something."
Aurora and Astrid were relieved, at one point, that they could actually TRY to pass the newly-required information. "Okay. We're going to be quick. We sneaked out of the castle--"
"You what?!!" Wilhelm whispered his shout;
"And we found something in the forest." Aurora's serious tone caught his immediate attention.
I looked at her. She's reading. I need to enter the forest again. This time, without her. I need to find out about something.
Monday, June 4, 2012
Yuu turned to Miki and replied, “What?”
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
“I don’t understand that either.”
“Hm..no.” The other one looked around as well.
His friend looked up again.
Noticing the silence between them, he continued, “I felt as if whatever it was, the thing that made that sound knew that I was there and I heard it, and it felt like as if it wanted to eat me.”
“No, I’m really telling you the truth, man. I ran as fast as I can but I could still feel like that thing’s behind me. It was scary.. I couldn’t forget that feeling..”
“That fear…I couldn’t even scream. I just wanted to find a place to hide—“
“What is it, man??”
“R..run, damn it!!”
"Aurora, wake up!" Astrid shook her twin sister awake as bells were rung non-stop, replacing the usual sound of birds chirping in the morning. "It's so loud!! Astrid, what's happening?!" Aurora protested in annoyance, but her question wasn't answered. She followed Astrid to the window and heard soldiers shouting;
"Find the beast!"
"Take your weapons, men! This ain't going to be pretty!"
"Make sure no one leaves the forest until we kill the beast!!!"
One shout after another, sending signs of a mixture of excitement, eagerness and fear big enough to reach the twins. "Astrid...what's going on..? It looks like..."
"War." Astrid said coldly.
"They mentioned beast, Astrid. What beast?"
Astrid shook her head. Slowly she walked towards the bed, her fingers tracing the carved wooden footboard. Aurora understood the silence.
"Is that why the forest became so quiet and all the animals disappeared?"
Astrid turned around to face her sister. "Maybe. We can't ask father about this. He'll surely send us back to this room. This is really strange. I feel...something..uneasy."
Aurora smirked. "It is called curiosity, dear sister. Sam taught us so many things about the forest and the creatures inside it, but he never mentioned any beast. It's natural for us to be curious. After all, the forest IS our forbidden playground."
Smiling back in agreement, Astrid spoke. "We need to sneak out. But how? I'm pretty much sure father ordered some of his soldiers to look for any sign of us trying to interfere."
Silence fills the air for a moment, until Aurora walks towards the door in a calm manner with a sly smile plastered on her face.
"Where are you going?"
"Astrid, we're going to play dress-up."
Aurora enjoyed herself, wearing armors, holding a sword, stepping on the dirt and not having to mind her posture when she walks. Her boyish attitude often got her scolded by their tutors, but also often enough for her to play pranks on them. Placing banana peels is only one of her "kindest" pranks.
"Hurry up, men! We'll start hunting by sundown!" the general shouted.
Astrid looked around, amazed by the rare sight of chaos in the castle compound. What caused this chaos is not something light. Noticing something, she pulled Aurora; "Come here for a moment."
Both of them hide behind a huge stack of straw before Astrid earns a questioning look from Aurora. "Listen."
The men standing nearby were chatting.
"It was huge. He said he heard him scream but he was too afraid to go back. The creature was hideous and huge."
"It probably have eaten many more before last night."
"I heard the beast attacked one of the villages in the west road and it was horrible. It might come here next."
"That beast might harm the people in the castle."
"What if it knows we're going to kill it tonight?"
Astrid listened attentively for any details about the occurrence. She pulled her hood lower and turned to Aurora. "The beast killed one of our men last night, and probably a lot of people before that."
"What beast? What kind of beast??"
Astrid shook her head. "I don't know. But if it can attack a village and kill a lot of people, then it must be something big and fast. There were no traces found, however. I wonder why.."
"You're welcomed to stay here like a rock while I prefer to go and find out about it myself." Aurora walks away in excitement, too fast for Astrid to catch her. They reach the stable and prepare their horses, ready to sneak out through the secret gate surrounded by thick bushes. They have Sam to thank for that. "Ooh.. I wish I have my arrows. This sword is heavy." Astrid sighed. Aurora chuckled. "Not a problem." She walked into one corner where stacks of straw are placed, and she buries her hand in it, trying to find something. Astrid watches her with a strange, questioning look on her face.
Aurora paused for a while and broke the silence. "Oi, you might as well help me over here."
"What in the world are you looking for??" Astrid asked, trying to search whatever her sister was searching for in the stacks of straw. Suddenly her hand found something hard, and she pulled it out. Bow and arrows. New. Lots of arrows.
"A-ha! You found them! And so did I!" Aurora pulled out another set.
"When did you--"
"They have been here for two months. I had them made and hid them here just in case father takes away our weapons. I asked the blacksmith to design arrows that have a longer range of travel. I tried one of these arrows. They're really, really fast and look---"
Aurora took one of the arrows, and slightly turned the silver metal below the tip. The tip opened up into a lotus form where each tip is sharp enough for the arrow to rip the skin and muscles. One may be enough to kill, and they have a lot of them.
"Wounds caused by these little guys takes a very long time to heal. I planned to present them to you on our birthday, behind father's back of course."
Astonished at the cruelty that the arrows possess, Astrid stared at her twin. "We look the same..but Aurora, you are one hell of a barbaric princess, you know that."
Smiling, Aurora settled down on her horse and replied, "Yeah, I've known that since my first kill in the forest . Now let's go before father finds out that the ones sleeping on our bed are pillows and clothes."
Monday, January 9, 2012
Little girl : "....."
Wise owl : "This forest is full of dangerous creatures, even ones unknown to the humans. They might eat you if you're not careful."
Little girl : "Well said."
Seeing the fangs as she spoke, wise owl attempted to flee, but in his futile attempt, the owl was easily caught and swallowed. Chuckling in satisfaction, the little girl quietly took a few steps forward, looking around with a pair of taunting, yellow eyes which were not seen by her previous prey. With a sarcastic smirk formed on her blood-stained lips, she dissolves into the darkness, leaving behind an echo of an eerie hiss.
The Queen smiles, and replied, "They are indeed YOUR daughters."
And he sighed.
Aurora let out a heavy sigh and took off her hunting robe. Putting down her bow and arrows she sat on the nearest giant root and said, "Where are all the animals?!"
"Probably they got sick of us and run away. I don't know."
"But there should be at least one or two left behind. The last time we killed a wolf was a week ago! A wolf. A. One."
Astrid sat next to her sister, "Well, AYY wolf got us terribly scolded by father. The last time I see him scolding people like that was when he accidentally tripped on a banana skin, fell down the staircase and landed on his backside. It was hilarious."
Both of them laughed.
"It was meant for our annoying chaperones, thank you very much. I didn't expect father to go and check on us."
Silence filled the air for a moment, until Aurora's smile disappeared,
"But it is strange..... The forest is suddenly so...."
"Yes. Do you think something happened?"
Aurora was about to answer until a familiar sound was heard. The royal horse.
"Looks like father found out. Let's go." Astrid picked up her weapons on her side. Feeling a nudge, she looked at her sister.
"Does this mean we have to wear earplugs again? Father will surely scold us, you know."