Silver's a total block, and Deviant Project is getting weird... I started on a new thing about 4-6 weeks ago, and found that I've never written something faster than for this new thing. (25000 words in 5 weeks. That's GOOD)
It's called Vanza Rei, two words I made up out of nowhere.(It was originally Danza Rei... but then I found out Danza's a real word...)
Anyways, It's pretty large. The plot itself is freaking huge, and I plan for it to span about seven long volumes and one huge psychological plot. For now, though, the pacing's is a bit weird, definitely off, and dialogue is uneven during some chapters...
I won't be posting every chapter, only a couple chapters...
PS: This is all written in Notepad.
EDIT: All chapters will be here now
"Hello, students," the strange man in black said to us. "Welcome to the Void of the Dominions."
Around us, light and darkness swirled, dancing as one to create a mosaic of existence. Psychedelic colors were created in strange forms and dispersed at will. He called this the Void, did he?
"Who the hell are you?!" A boy roughly my age said, screaming at him. Then again, all of the kids around here were roughly my age. And they were some strange kids.
The strange man cloaked in the darkness smiled. His perfect white teeth scared me. "Hello, Belmont," the man greeted. The boy's eyes widened, and he took a step back. "Yes," the man said, "I know who you are, Belmont Veis Hisdial, of the sacred Hisdial family." The boy bit his lower lip, fear on his face, yet he was defiant; he dared not to run away. I really couldn't say that about most of the others here, even myself. "You all may call me Master Mortiery," Mortiery said as he bowed. "I am now assigned your keeper and guardian. You are to come with me to our Domain in the Void. The path shall be unlocked for you."
And then Mortiery, no wait, Master Mortiery, turned, his cloak flapping in the nonexistent wind as he did so. The man seemed to say something beneath his breath. Then he clapped his hand, and continued onward. The mixture of light and shadow that had been swirling around us then collected beneath his feet, and then thus hardened. The man continued onward, step by step, creating a bridge or pathway in this void as he did so.
"You are to follow," Master Mortiery told us, without even turning around, "Lest you end up like Mikoreza over there."
Mikoreza, I assume, was the girl that had tried to run away, her eyes showing her fear at what she saw. The girl, scared and screaming, had gotten up and run off, anyway, anywhere. After a small distance, Mikoreza seemed to have reached the swirling of light and dark. The moment she had touched it, her body had been blasted apart, limbs and bones ripped and shredded right before our eyes. This dying mass had then been repulsed back, near our group. Twitching, the quivering mass had then stilled, becoming dead and lumps of shredded body.
And then he had appeared. The man in the cloak. He had seen the dead girl, or whatever was left of her, and then smiled. Smiled.
Around me, a few of us cried. They broke down sobbing, fearful of everyone and everything. This group of kids, teenagers actually but from the fear in our eyes you wouldn't know, stayed mainly in a circle, yet far apart from each other. We knew no one here, and bloody gruesome death of someone your own age right before your eyes would make one distrust other people, especially if some mysterious man in black had just smiled at the sight of the aforementioned death. Several of us just sat there, scared, silent, just looking at the vaguely humanoid corpse or at the path that Mortiery had crossed. At least two or three kids simply screamed. One seemed to lie there in a fetal position, looking as if he was insane. For all I know, he might have been.
"Who," a boy said slowly, the one that dared speak to Mortiery, the one named Belmont. "Was he?"
He looked around at us, at all of us, trying to make eye contact with us one at a time. Many of the kids didn't seem to have heard him, or if they did hear, they didn't care, not the least. Some looked away, not because they had knowledge but because of mistrust, fear. One or two, usually the silent ones, shrugged their shivering shoulders, and then looked away.
"I don't know," someone had said. Belmont had turned his eyes, and then, oh my god, he had turned them to me, and I just realized: I just spoke. I just answered. I dared to talk. With this nugget of information processed, I dared to say more. "Dude, no one knows. No one understands what is going on, why... why this is happening why..."
"Why did Mikoreza have to die," someone whispered. Belmont and I both seemed to turn our eyes, and found them facing a girl with startlingly green hair. She was another of the silent ones, like me, but tears did rest on her eyes. She wiped them away, scowling at someone, maybe herself for crying.
"I don't know," Belmont had said, and I just realized: the girl had said a question, and Belmont had answered.
Why did Mikoreza have to die? Why did she die?
"God, I feel so slow today," I had said, and then burst out laughing, at the pure freaking irony of that statement. I held my stomach, laughing like a maniac, which I guess I was. Tears of laughter clouded my eyes. Occasionally, I could make out Belmont making a startled face and the green girl, which I immediately thought of as Martian Girl, not really doing anything.
"What's wrong with you?" Belmont asked, halfway really asking and halfway asking if I was insane, I guess.
"Guess," I retorted, and that statement seemed to dry out my tears.
"What do we do?" Belmont asked us. I looked around for a moment, somewhat dizzied by the constant swirling of the white and black.
"Do we follow him?" I asked.
Belmont looked at me as if I was insane. I might have been at that moment. "What? What?! Follow him?! He just smiled at that girl's corpse!"
"We," green Martian Girl said, "might end up like that girl if we stay."
"No," Belmont immediately replied, "like hell if I am going to end up DEAD here, without a clue of what's going on!"
"Mikoreza did," Martian Girl replied."
Belmont gave her an evil eye, one bordering on his insanity; one bordering on all of our insanity.
"No!" Belmont retorted, screaming. His shout had overlapped all of the others' cries. Most of us shut up, and stared at him. The kid in the fetal position stopped his shivering, and then stared up at Belmont. "No! I won't die! I won't die like this!"
"Aren't you already dead?" Martian Girl asked, and Belmont froze. We all froze.
"We're," Belmont said, "not dead. We're not dead, yet. And guess what? I'm going to live. I'm going to freaking live!"
"How?" One of the other kids asked, this time a small, timid looking boy that actually seemed a bit more like a kid than a teenager. "What are you going to do?"
Another kid, one of the silent ones, got up, and brushed himself off. He was tall and well built, his skin a mulatto color with intricate patterns of tattoos on his skin. He gave us all a look, one of disdain, I think, and then he headed off, on the path that Mortiery took. His feet stepped on the light and shadow, and it didn't falter.
"Losers," he said, more malice in his voice than can be expressed in just those words, and for the first time, I felt something odd about all of the talk; as if all the words were translated...
"It's closing!" The boy in the fetal position screamed. His voice echoed across the area we were in. It sounded insane, inhuman, as if he was an animal on its deathbed. The boy clutched his head, shaking. "It's closing in! The wall is closing in! We're all going to freaking die!"
"The walls?" I murmured, not understanding, and I looked around. The light and shadows that were dancing all over... yes, I saw it. It was closing in, the light and dark closed in on us! Suddenly, it seemed as if it was a swarming light and dark.
"We're all going to freaking die bloody freaking deaths!" The boy said.
Some of the kids, all the crying ones, as a matter of fact, got up, and staggered along, yelling at the tall boy, "Wait!" Telling him to wait for them. "Don't leave us behind!" They sobbed as they did so. That tall boy never turning back, just continuing forward.
"It's actually closing, isn't it?" Belmont asked, looking around, taking a step back.
"Yeah!" I said, staggering up. My hand moved to my shoulder, feeling if the wound was still there. It wasn't. "The walls, these stuff, it's getting closer..."
"Don't touch it," Martian Girl softly advised. "You'll end up like that other one..."
My eyes briefly glanced to that gruesome mess that was left. I averted.
"What do we do?!" Belmont said, practically screaming.
"Do we follow him?" I asked. "That Mortiery man..."
"What?" Belmont seemed angered at this suggestion. "You saw his face, right?! You saw his face when he saw that..."
"Yeah," I said, "but I really don't want to become like that girl. I'd like to live, thank you very much." I barked out a dry laugh at my attempt at humor. Belmont gave me a face, as if not understanding what I just said, but then he turned away.
"So we have to follow him?" Belmont said.
"We have to?" Martian Girl said, making it sound like a question.
"We don't really have a choice," I said. I took a step in the direction of the path. "Who wants to go with?" I asked, saying it to all of my peers that were here. There were still many that just sat there, one that continued to cry, who probably didn't hear a single part of any of the conversation.
Belmont sighed. "Fine, I'm going."
"Me as well," Martian Girl said, sounding quite prim.
"Yeah!" One of the others said, and got up. Martian Girl got up as well, and pretty soon, many of us were on our feet. I looked around; there were about thirty of us still left. Adjusting to this weird place and this strange atmosphere, I now just realize how extremely strange all of us were, so very absurdly strange. Yes, most of us were the same age, or so it appears, but how we look and dress was completely different, drastically different from everyone else. Some were shorter than others, some were taller, muscular, and people of various imaginable types were here. I won't even start on the insane clothing. Yet they all seemed to not really feel strange in their clothing... as a matter of fact the people here seemed to look at others like others were weird... including me.
I sighed. This was so not time for this. We had to go... and understand.
"Wait..." a boy said, the small and childish boy from before, "What do we do with him?"
He pointed to the boy that was still on the ground, the boy that was in a fetal position.
Belmont came over. "Hey. Let's go, we got to get up, and go, you know?" The boy only shook harder.
"Screw him!" Some girl said. Looking at the girl, she had startlingly pale skin and white hair, with reddish and purple eyes. Albino, I think. "We have to go! I'm not going to die here!"
"Yeah!" Others agreed with what she said. "Get up you ass!" "We're going to leave you!" "You're going to die!"
"The walls are closing," Belmont echoed. Some of us stared at him. "The swirling whatever it is, it's encircling this area. If we stay any longer..."
"I guess we'll have to carry him," I said. I looked down. At least he wasn't fat.
"I'll help," Martian Girl said. "Everyone else go on ahead."
Some of them stayed there for a moment, looking around, glaring around. Them, slowly, they raced off, to the path of light and dark. Soon enough, only Belmont, Martian Girl, the boy, and I were left.
"Let's go." Belmont said, determination in his voice. I sighed. The Martian Girl just stood there, swaying for a moment, looking just a little bit blank yet pissed off.
We bent down, and picked up the boy. He seemed to kick and scream the first couple of moments, of he subsided after that, continuing to suck his thumb. I groaned, taking his legs, Belmont taking the boy's upper body, and Martian Girl supporting both of us. Tripping at first, we eventually settled into a pattern that was reminiscent of a spider's movement.
"He's surprisingly heavy," I remarked. Belmont gave me a look... again.
"Really? I find him normal in weight."
"It's coming," Martian Girl remarked, panic rising in her voice. She looked around, her emerald hair twirling as she did so. I looked around, and it was coming, the swirling walls were enclosing on us, bit by bit. Our area was getting smaller, and soon it will touch us. And kill us.
"We have to go!" Belmont exclaimed, hurrying us up. "Get to the path, now!"
I took a breath, and all three of us, holding up the boy, ran towards the path, our feet moving as one in a drive and frenzy to exist, to continue living. Entering the path, with our feet moving and feeling solid on that light and dark pathway, I glanced back just once, at the carcass of Mikoreza. Soon, it touched the wall of light and dark... and it was shredded apart, barely any mass at all. Bits of black that betrayed her existence were all that was left in that small area, and soon, even that area was gone, another wall of mosaic existence...
"Don't look back!" Belmont yelled. "Run away!"
I looked forward, and I saw the path, the bright of light and dark, extending, forward and beyond. Like an abstract painting, the path just seemed to wind up forever, and endless staircase. I saw no one ahead, and only the coming death from behind.
"THE FREAKING WALLS!" The kid screamed, squirming in our hands. He sounded insane, yet when we looked around, the path was beginning to thin, its width was beginning to decrease, and it turned into another wall.
"What the hell is happening?!" Belmont screamed. "What the hell do we do?!"
"Go ahead!" I yelled to her, the Martian Girl. She looked at me, with total surprise, and I saw her jade eyes scared and wide open. "You run ahead! Belmont and I can take it from here!"
"But if I leave you-" She started, but Belmont interrupted.
"We can get there, wherever it is!" He screamed. "You don't have to die!"
She closed her eyes for a moment, and then nodded. She released her part of the boy, and ran ahead, her feet echoing on the path we were on. Her speed was amazing, a gazelle with two feet, faster than I could have ever run. I glanced to the boy once, and back up, and then she was gone.
"She's ahead already?" I asked. Belmont shrugged.
"She just... disappeared. Grew small on the path, and then was gone!"
"We have to go!" I said, my arms aching from holding the guy. "The path is getting too narrow!"
It was, it really was. Belmont and I were slow, carrying the boy and making out feet synchronize. The constant tripping slowed our speed, and panic set in. We could die, we were going to die here...
I closed my eyes, knowing the worst was yet to come...
The melody did touch my ears, and I opened them. Belmont and I were still running, yet it seemed pointless. As a matter of fact, the moment I opened my eyes, I barely recognized the bridge. The psychedelic patterns of light and dark were changing, practically gone, and rather, spectrums of light danced around us. Belmont and I ceased our running, yet around us the environment continued to move. Tentatively, we laid the boy down, and stood up. A single light appeared, and soon enough, I was blinded and unfeeling.
"I see," a wickedly familiar voice echoed. "We have some late students here."
I opened my eyes, and found myself lying on the floor, staring up at an impossibly red sky. Clouds and strange rocks and boulders dotted the sky, moving around in patterns resembling the weather. Getting my upper half up, I found myself hearing the light melody that played in the background, a small sound, reminiscent of the harpsichord or a flute, creating simple yet intricate melody. In just seconds after hearing it, it drifted into the background, and I was barely able to realize it was there...
"What's going on?" I heard someone murmur, and I recognized the voice of Belmont. I glanced over to the direction of the voice, my eyes clearing up as I did so. He was in a similar position as me, and was just getting up.
"Students that took too long to follow the directions of their master," the voice answered, and I my eyes dimly made out an all too familiar shadow. The grin of the man made me remember: Master Mortiery loomed right above me.
"They were just trying to bring the boy with them!" a girl said, and I found myself seeing the stunningly green hair of Martian Girl once more.
"Fools," Mortiery answered. He walked over the boy, still lying and shivering on the ground, sucking on his thumb. Mortiery said something, but I could barely recognize what he said. "Khizisiozhuni, is it?" The boy shivered some more. "Often called Ozhuni by your friends, am I right? I often figured that you were weak and simple, but never did I expect such a sad reaction from one such as you," Mortiery laughed, and then kicked the boy in his back. A collective gasp escaped our throats, but no one tried to do anything. I looked around, and found that the rest of my peers were here, such as the tall boy and the albino girl.
"Stop it!" Martian Girl exclaimed, moving forward. Mortiery immediately stopped laughing, and his eyes turned towards the Martian Girl.
"Ah, Djiria, dear, nice to see you," Mortiery said, greeting Martian Girl. Martian Girl, who I guess is Djiria, hesitated, "How do you like it here?"
"What is going on?" Djiria demanded, anger predominant on her face. "Who are you? Why are we here?"
"I am Master Mortiery," Mortiery repeated. He spread out his arms, an insane smile on his face. "This is our Domain in the Void, Famiel." Mortiery mockingly bowed to her.
"I do not understand," Djiria slowly said. "What is this Domain? What is a Domain?"
Mortiery glanced back Ozhuni, the boy sucking his thumb, one last time, and then looked forward. "Well, all of you are now students of the Rei, in the Domain of Famiel. I am your Master, as I have said, Master Mortiery."
"What is this?" I asked. "What is happening to us?"
The man gave me a glance, and turned back towards Ozhuni. Mortiery thrust out his hand, pointed in the direction of Ozhuni. His hand tightened into a grip, and then Ozhuni stopped his shivering. Rather, he started thrashing around, his hands grasping for his throat. I saw it, I saw Ozhuni's throat tighten, trying to breathe yet not, something stopping his very breath. No matter how much his hands clawed, his hands touched naught of what was choking him. Mortiery's hand imagined squeezing harder, and harder it seemed.
"You're doing this," someone said. I glanced around, and saw what was in my eyes; I saw wonder and fear, fascination yet disgust. Some took steps back, averting their eyes to this tragedy, while others took step forwards, hungrily taking in this sight, trying to freaking understand. "You're killing him!"
My eyes moved, and saw that it was Djiria who was speaking. "Whatever it is, you're choking him; killing him!"
Mortiery smiled. "It has a name, dear Djiria, this power has a name," he said, and then raised his arm and hand, causing Ozhuni to rise with, his throat pushed up, and his entire body against his will. Ozhuni's face purpled, deprivation of oxygen and the choke hold coloring his face. Soon, his head was level with Mortiery's own head, his feet maddeningly short, unable to reach the floor. Suddenly, it seemed to me that Mortiery was very tall.
"Why are you doing this?!" Some girl in the crowd yelled. A glance showed a white girl that didn't look to strange to me. Fear shown on her face, as well as defiance, but none of the anger that Djiria had. Rather, it was a wish that this would end; a wish that this dream would end.
"Dear Meredith," Mortiery said, "don't mess with things that you don't understand. You of all people should know."
The girl, Meredith her name was, paled, and immediately she seemed to blend into the background, into the crowd. And then, Mortiery returned his gaze to Ozhuni, his mockingly polite face now turned to one of coldness.
"Ozhuni, boy, listen," Mortiery said to him, but I doubt he heard; Ozhuni's struggles were completely ineffective. The power or whatever Mortiery had dealt took total control over Ozhuni's mundane body. "We have no need for stragglers in this group. We have no need for those that refuse to accept reality. You better get it together, find some way to end up like Mikoreza, or something worse may happen to you..."
I didn't understand, and personally, I didn't want to. Mortiery's evil eye was cast over the entire group, and I realized; Mortiery would have done this either way. His powers or whatever, he would have made a demonstration whether some guy like Ozhuni acted weak or someone acted strong. In Chinese concentration camps during the wars, the officers would shoot one random person out of every batch to make an example. This is what he had done, and not only that; he liked it. The sad thing is, it definitely work.
"This power," Mortiery said, "is the arte of Rei. You will learn this, or suffer the consequences." I doubt Ozhuni could have understood, I doubt that Ozhuni had the capacity to hear it. Ozhuni's struggles were weakening, slowing down. As Mortiery returned his gaze to Ozhuni, the guy's hands fell limp by his sides, the only sounds that could be heard was the melody in the background and some minor choking sounds of Ozhuni, which were gradually growing weaker.
With a disgusted face, Mortiery cast his hand aside, throwing Ozhuni's almost limp body a long distance, making his body roll like a rag doll for a moment. Finally stopping, Ozhuni sat there for a moment, sick and dazed and depraved of air. Then, his body flopped to the side, and he was still.
"No!" Djiria's shout was one of pain as she ran towards the body of Ozhuni. Kneeling down, she checked his vital signs. I myself was silent and still, unthinking. I could barely process what I saw and felt. "He's still alive," Djiria exclaimed.
"A pity," Mortiery coolly said. Djiria's heated glare met a frosty twin in Mortiery's eyes.
"Why would you do this?" Djiria said, and echo to all of our words. "Why do you do this, bring us here yet not care if we live or die?"
"You all," Mortiery said, "are possible students of the arte of Rei. I will teach you, whether you or I wish it or not." He turned his back on her, and then marched, and I found myself seeing a building before me. Mortiery marched up the impossibly clean and white steps, into the large and beautiful colossus of a building. "I'd prefer if all of you just die, but alas, I have not permission to do such a wonderful thing."
"You are insane," Djiria's voice echoed, but he ignored it.
"Come, class," Mortiery mockingly said, "the arte of Rei waits for those who see."
Ozhuni was still unmoving, as Djiria tried to revive him. Slowly, the class, some shaking, some with eyes of fear and greed, followed Mortiery, looking for whatever it was he held, the so called "Arte of Rei." And all the while, the background melody maddeningly played, a celestial choir singing the sacred song to this ersatz day...
The building was impossible, really, it was beautiful, elegant, and it was exactly because of those traits that it was impossible, completely and undeniable unreal. The so called Domain of the Void, Famiel, was beautiful and impossible.
The first level was a cathedral building, a massive and elegant building of white and black design, a design that had Victorian designs yet was obviously not, something that was influenced from an infinite range of eras, both modern and ancient, infinitely young and infinitely old. I counted three floors of this building, and then a crown shaped rise on the roof, golden and silver in hue.
And then came the second level, the second impossible structure of this unbelievable monument. The second structure held no bonds to the first; it hovered in the sky, dozens of feet above it, nothing holding it up there, suspended in midair. It was unlike the first level, completely different, it was more of a disc, a giant revolving disc that hovered in this unbelievable sky, gigantic yet seemingly flat, as if nothing more than a single layer in the sky. Its floor was half transparent, so that I could see past it, but nothing of it. It was not decoration, I know that it wasn't. It was the second level of this immense existence.
I didn't see the third or fourth or whatever part of this building, this structure, but I know that there may have been more.
As the others followed Mortiery through the archway entrance, I stared up at this structure, for the first time since I got here. It towered over us, a heaven complemented by a eerie melody in the background.
"What is this place?" I wondered aloud. I couldn't stop myself; it's been building up, the insanity, and the nonsensicalness of the situation. I felt like a mental breakdown was near, bubbling near the surface, about to break. I needed something to do, fast.
"Can anyone help?" Djiria yelled out to those that stayed behind, among them Belmont and I. Seven others still remained, although they and those that followed Mortiery into the building both seemed quite hesitant and unsure of their decision or lack of.
Belmont rushed over immediately, and already I can see that out bonds from just trying to help the boy existed. Three others came, I saw, two girls and a boy. The two girls wore clothes that seemed just a little similar, but the boy wore completely different clothes, a black cloak enshrouding him. They didn't seem familiar with each other, though, and kept a distance apart from the other. After a moment, I took a breathe, and came forward as well, ignoring the amazing sights that were left behind me as I turned my back.
"That was strangling, wasn't it?" one of the girls said. The boy that came nodded.
"The Mortiery man said that it was Rei or something, that magic or whatever it was." The boy glanced back, as if speaking about such things was a capital crime.
"He's still breathing," Djiria said, "except it seems a bit hard for him, irregular."
"Was that manual strangling?" Belmont seemed to wonder. "That may have been magic or Rei or something like that, but it seemed as if Mortiery has simply choked him with his hand, except..."
"He didn't." My answer sounded quite somber. "The boy's... Ozhuni's struggles didn't have any effect on the attack or whatever..." His name sounded wrong in my mouth.
"So the strangulation would have been more effective than otherwise," Djiria finished. She looked down at the boy once more, her hair spinning as she did so. "We won't be able to measure how much damage it caused on him then..."
"Shouldn't we lay him on his back?" The boy with the black cloak said. "So the blood of the body moves through easier."
Belmont nodded, as did one of the girls. "Good point," Belmont said. The girl gave him a stare for a moment, but it was ignored. Belmont and Djiria took the top half, and rolled him over, while I took his feet, and then we finished, with Ozhuni somewhat unconscious and on his back.
"His breathing still seems hard, irregular," Djiria said, worry crossing her face.
"Are you awake?" Belmont asked, with a small tap on the face. Ozhuni's eyes fluttered, but then stayed closed.
"He was thrown pretty far," one of the girls said. Looking at her, I found her eyes violet, and a scar crossing her left arm. "Is there brain damage?"
Djiria hesitated. "It was mostly his shoulder and body that received the blow from the ground, though, not his head..."
"Do you think he'll die?" Belmont questioned. We didn't meet his eyes, his words quite shocking to us.
"No," The other boy slowly stated, "you'd have to be strangled for quite a while before you receive anything such as death. The power in the hold was probably there, but it was only for a couple of miris, nothing long..."
"Miris?" I asked, and was immediately echoed by the others. "What's a miris?"
A surprised look came onto the boy's face. His eyes then narrowed, as if he suspected this question. "A miris is a unit of time," he slowly stated to us.
"Unit of time?" I echoed. "Like a second? A minute? An hour?"
The boy shook his head. "I don't know what you are talking about. Those words sound so... weird."
All of us looked around for a moment, except for Belmont. Then, Djiria said, "Let's take no mind. We all have an idea of what's going on, I guess, so it doesn't really matter at this moment..."
We all agreed, and chose to ignore it. However, the mood of the conversation darkened. Something was happening, all of this...
"Do we leave him here?" Djiria asked us.
"No," I said. "Who knows what could happen to him here? The last time someone left the group behind..." My eyes caught Belmont, and we both knew. "It could be quite dangerous..."
"Taking him with us might endanger him more," One of the girls, the purple eyed- scarred on said. "We already do not know how strong the strangle was, we might be pushing out luck by picking him up..."
"Yeah... but what do we do?" Belmont face revealed the agony, anger, and turmoil within him. "We can't just not follow Mortiery, we've got no choice."
"I'm staying," Djiria said, the conviction in her voice surprising us. "Everyone here, go on ahead. I'll stay here, and catch up later."
We all hesitated for a moment. Belmont slowly agreed, sighing as he did so. "Let us go then... into that unreal building..."
We all turned to leave, but then a command from Djiria, "Wait," stopped us. "What are your names?"
I looked around. It was quite depressing how hesitant we were to giving this simple piece of information.
"I am Belmont," Belmont said. Djiria nodded.
"I'm Seavi," The purple eyed girl said.
"Li," The other girl said. The girls both looked at each other for a moment.
"I am named Djiria, you might know," Djiria stated.
"I am called Vone Klai Freis," The boy in the black cloak said. He stared at us with something like surprise, but I learned to ignore these stares for now.
I sighed. "I'm Seth," I said. I shook my head. Everything was so... overwhelming.
"Go," Djiria said. The girls and Belmont then left immediately. Vone Klai Freis, as he called himself, seemed unsure. He looked at the three leaving, at Ozhuni, and at Djiria. I was discreet, and I saw his gaze lingering on Djiria for a moment, and I guess he liked her. I couldn't blame him; she was quite cute and pretty, as a matter of fact stunning with that green hair. He left.
I turned to leave, but I hesitated. I looked at Djiria, who looked at me back. She was still kneeling by Ozhuni.
"What do you think this place is?" I asked her.
Her face clouded, and looked away. "Is this really the time for that?"
"You have an idea, don't you?" She refused to look at my face. "You definitely have an idea."
"Somewhat," she admitted. "We all do, don't we?"
"It seems likely." She didn't answer, and I didn't peruse it. I turned, and like those before me, made for the building, up the steps, and through the archway entrance, just like Mortiery did before me.
So it's true then. It's really the only thing that makes sense, although of course nothing still makes sense. To think, that this can possibly happen.
To think, that I am actually dead. That I died.
3 Realms of Famiel
My legs were shaky as they moved. My heart beat in my chest, not particularly fast but surprisingly loud, Ba-DUM, Ba-DUM, Ba-DUM. The rocks and boulders in the sky, beneath the second level of the building, made me dizzy, my eyes following their movements. Sweat did not fall from my forehead, yet I wiped it anyways. Words repeated themselves in my mind.
So I'm dead. I'm really really dead. I'm dead, gone in the ground, been sliced and scythed, dead and long gone. No, wait, that's wrong, I'm not dead. That's just stupid. If I'm dead, then that means I can't move, walk, think, hate, fear, of which all is pretty much rolling around in my head right at this moment, so yeah, I'm probably not dead. If I'm dead, that means that I can't die again, which is insane. I mean, Mikoreza died, didn't she? If she was dead, then she couldn't die again. I saw her body explode and get shredded right before my eyes, didn't I? Yeah, that means she is dead and now deader, which is pretty insane. If I was dead, then that couldn't happen. This could be Hell, but I doubt it with that melody playing in the background, and no way is someone like Mortiery an angel, so this ain't heaven, so I guess religion is wrong, hah hah. So I'm not dead... but... yeah, no, wait a minute, how about this: I died. Yeah, that makes sense. I died, except I'm not dead. Totally makes sense. I just died, so at least I'm not dead, if I was dead, I couldn't take revenge, although, let's face it, I'm not sure I'll ever be able to take revenge in this Wonderland here, but at least I'm not dead, only died...
I smacked my head, and then sighed. My legs continued up the stairs, which seemed just a little like marble close up yet in the end it wasn't exactly. The archway was an intricate, curving design, with snake like vines curving its columns. The columns themselves were smooth, and looked more like a modern and New Age design rather than a tradition or Roman style.
Everyone else had entered before me, with the exception of Ozhuni and Djiria left behind, so I had to race to catch up. Entering the archway, I arrived at a large chamber room, with subdued designs compared to the ones outside. Although it was clean, I found that the place was old, as if aged. Just walking here felt as if I was intruding an ancient undisturbed sanctuary.
Ahead of me crowded the rest of the people. Although he was not the tallest, broadest, or wore the most extravagant clothing, Mortiery stood out at the front, the man cloaked, the one who caused all this, the catalyst of our insanity.
Was he smiling?
"Why are you so late?" Someone voiced to me. I looked around for a moment, and then found myself facing down, staring at a small, timid looking boy. He wore strange, spandex-like clothes, ones that stretched against your body, and weird black tattoo looking colors swarmed this body. The boy's eyes were wide and childish, yet there was an air about him that I didn't find childish. He looked and sounded like a kid, but I didn't trust that too much. Everyone else here seemed around the vicinity of fifteen to seventeen, including myself, so I didn't trust this little dude to not be one.
"We were trying to help that boy out," I answered, the wariness in my voice almost exposed. The boy blinked. "The one Mortiery hurt."
The boy slowly nodded, and then I suddenly felt like he was leering at me. I know he wasn't, but yet that was the feeling I got.
"What is the arte?" Someone, male, at the front yelled. "How do we use it?"
I glared at Mortiery, from the very back of the crowd of my peers. He knew what was happening, and I understood some of what was happening, what Mortiery wished to happen. Everyone heard the greed and the wish in that voice, the want, to know that arte, to know "Rei," be able to choke people like Mortiery did.
"There are seven Dominions," a voice echoed, which I recognized as Mortiery. "And between the Dominions is the Void Realm, where the possibilities of existence exist." Mortiery turned around, his cloak fluttering as he did so. "And where the danger of disillusion threatens your fragile minds."
"What are you talking about?" someone asked, agitation dripping from that one's voice.
"Silence," someone said, and I found myself staring at the tall, mulatto boy with the tattoos. "Listen not with the mouth."
"What he said," Mortiery said, and, rushing through the crowd, past Belmont and the others, I found myself facing Mortiery. Mortiery no longer smiled. His hands laid by his sides, useless and numb. Not standing straight, no sick grin on his face, shadows were cast on Mortiery, making him look older and just a little bit insane. And tired. "Listen, or ignore knowledge. Your choice."
That sounded like a threat. Mortiery's eerily insane and yet bland face stared back at me, at us. He cocked his head. "There are seven Dominions," he repeated, "and knowledge is the currency in between.
"There are seven Dominions, and reality is the perception within.
"There are seven Dominions, bound by Rei and the one.
"There are seven Dominions, where travelers are found, trespassers sacred.
"There are seven Dominions, from which truth reveals.
"There are seven Dominions, and from one eternity bound."
Mortiery abruptly turned, and we found ourselves facing one of three massive staircases, one to the left, one to the right, and one in front of us. The second level was spread out across the room, and at the end of the huge stairway at the center was a strange device, a large platform with a single item sticking up. Blue, glowing crystalline items floated in mid air, encircling the platform.
"We go up there now," Mortiery said, and started to the platform.
I cradled my head, half moaning. I blinked several times, over and over and over. A headache rippled inside of me, and I had to keep myself in check from completely moaning or fainting. As I looked around, I found many others, practically everyone, was affected similarly, showing similar symptoms to mine. None fainted, but one seemed about to barf.
In my mind, a single picture had flashed through, from the moment Mortiery had started talking to the time he ended. What I had seen n my mind's eye was vague, the colors distorted as if they were inverted, blurred and unable to be completely made out. As the headache receded from me, I tried remembering the picture, but it did not show. I smacked my head, but it dealt nothing but a slight moment of pain.
"What was that?!" Someone yelled out to Mortiery. Mortiery continued up, chuckling as he did so. "What was that picture?! Those whirlpools?!"
I closed my eyes, and took a deep breath. Yeah, that was right, there was a whirlpool, a large massive whirlpool or something... Or were there several? No, and it wasn't just a whirlpool like normal, it was so much more... several whirlpools? Maybe they were more than just water...?
"Follow," Mortiery commanded, and some of us did so, immediately. Others stayed for a moment, trying to remember the picture. Some seemed to converse among with others, although seemingly hesitantly. These groups, I saw, look similar. Although there were several different kinds of people here, I saw those some similarities between certain ones, like in their strange clothing, skin color, even some of the outrageous hair colors and styles. The similar ones talked amongst themselves...
"This is way too much," I muttered.
"You saw one too, right?" Someone asked, and found myself facing Belmont. I nodded stiffly, my mind still dizzy from that picture I saw.
"It has something to do with all of this, I think," I replied. "This Rei thing and Mortiery and everything..."
"Probably," Belmont agreed, "although we might not understand for quite a while yet..."
I sighed, everything still taking its toll on me even now. "I wonder if that's even what Mortiery has in mind..."
Belmont barked a grim laugh. "Dying in ignorance I shall not," he said to me, and then started up the stairs to the platform.
Once more, we all followed him. I glanced back one time, checking to see the green of Djiria, to see if she came with us, but spot her I could not. I'm pretty sure she was still with Ozhuni. I wonder if he has regained consciousness yet.
Mortiery turned around once he reached the center of the platform. The platform was large and circular, more than enough for us. The crystalline items were actually crystals, from the looks of it. However, they seemed somewhat unreal, mostly because of their pure size. They were crystals, yes, or sapphires, with the right, shining shade and spectacular curve, but they were so huge, gigantic that you actually cannot believe that they can exist, that there can possibly be sapphires of that size. My eyes widened at the sight of them, and my hands lingered to touch them. I held them still, though. The glow of the sapphires, though stunningly beautiful, was eerily supernatural. And of course... they floated.
I glanced at the design of the floor of the platform. It was one of those circular and somewhat similar to the magical designs of a fantasy. Seven small circles rimmed the edges of the one large circle, and a heptagon connected those smaller circles inside. Another sphere was inside that heptagon, but it was one of words and letters, or so I believe. The letters were like none I had ever seen before, strange, a mix between Arabic and Chinese symbols, and maybe some other types of writings were mixed in there too, to create an all new alphabet. At the center of that circle of symbols was a large, cylindrical platform sticking up. Abruptly, the surface cut off roughly four feet up. It was dark, and there was nothing on it or of it.
"Are we all here?" Mortiery asked, uncaring in his voice. With hardly a second for us to respond, Mortiery turned towards the raised object, and rested his hand on it.
A single wind blew across the large room, rustling Mortiery's cloak. For me, though, it left a unsettling feeling. A tremor then rushed through the platform, and then air pressure disrupted my balance. Slowly, I saw that the platform began to rise. The glow of the sapphires flared up, and then reddened, turning into a bright crimson color. These crystals then started turning around the platform, revolving around us. Light rose from one of the outer circles, and blue light reminiscent of the previous glow of the crystals. The blue created a mosaic purple with the red, and danced with the light as we rose. Gasps and exclaims echoed across the platform, although not as many as I thought.
"This is the first level of Famiel, called Quaia," Mortiery stated to us. "The entire building is part of Quaia, as well as the ground floor of Famiel."
As I recovered myself, I was able to stand up, and look beyond the platform. My eyes widened at what I saw.
"Is this fantasy or reality?" I wondered aloud.
Mortiery chuckled. "You just realized? There's never a difference between your reality, a fantasy, and your perception of."
Famiel was floating in space, or this fantasy's equivalent of it. The platform had arisen, and then, with magic or Rei or whatever it was, and was rising without nothing holding it up. It had arisen past the top floor of the building, or Quaia, as Mortiery had called it, and then it granted me a sight of the spectacular sight of the Quaia, and then, as the platform rose even higher, I saw the ground, and then what came past the ground, which was nothing...
Quaia, and all of Famiel, rested on nothing. Beneath Quaia was nothing, just more of that ersatz sky. I looked to the horizon and saw nothingness, a blindness emptiness of nothing but the sky. I looked up, and still saw only that floating disk, and beyond that half transparent disk, more of the sky.
"I feel like retching," someone commented. I turned, and found Belmont, his hands on his knees. "The sky... This... space is so... astoundingly endless, isn't it?"
"What is Rei?" I asked.
"The embodiment of desires," Mortiery answered.
"Who are you?"
"Why are you here?"
"Because you died."
I took a sharp breath. "Is that the only reason?"
"Are you schizo?"
"Somewhat," Mortiery seriously admitted.
The platform abruptly slowed, and then I stared up. The disk in the sky had been rapidly approaching, and now, it expanded exponentially, becoming the horizon itself. The spinning ring of crystals slowed, and the light from the circles on the platform receded, and soon, the platform had reached the disk.
"This," Mortiery said, "is the Second level of Famiel, Maaviro. The Garden of Famiel."
Our eyes widened at what we saw.
"This is a garden?" I said.
"Metaphorically," Mortiery said.
"Metaphorically my ass."
Across the plain stretched a bleak and dark horizon, not exactly arid but it definitely held no water. Dark, grey earth that casted a blue light. Across the plain, this so called disk, "Maaviro," was nothing but boulders and rock. Nothing seemed to exist here, and our breath seemed like an intrusion to this darkly empty place. I turned around and round, and saw nothing but more of this desolated earth.
A Garden, so it is called?
"What are we doing here?" Someone asked. I turned around and saw the albino girl talking.
"Activating your Rei," Mortiery told us, sneering. "Now it stays dormant, but there needs to be activation of it..."
"Danger," Mortiery answered, and then crouched, resting his hand on the earth.
From him it spread, a complete change in all of Maaviro as it was. Plants and flowers bloomed, sprouting out of nothingness, and blooming right before my eyes. The earth itself changed, from the grey, barren earth to a luscious brown and red soil which was soon replaced with the green of grass. Small plants sprouted, and then grew, growing into massive trees that aged and then hardened. Hundreds, thousands of trees sprouted at once, their roots breaking into the soil. The very earth itself changed, hills rising up, forests and grassland mounds arising. A river sliced through the land and widened, and fish jumped from out of the water. More trees sprouted, and these colossal trees hid everything from out sight, and then the climate seemed to wet, making the place hot and sweaty.
"What now?" Someone rudely asked.
"The punishment for those that defy my orders," Mortiery answered.
"Which is?" My eyes narrowed. I didn't understand what he said, but I had a dark idea...
"Death," Mortiery said, "or at the very least the equivalent of."
Mortiery held out his hand, and then that whisper of a wind came, and I looked to him. I found Mortiery's eyes flashing a crimson red as the Rei part activated. Looking outside the circle, to where the hand had dictated, I saw a distortion of space. Red and blue streams of light danced within that distortion, a vortex bending the reality of this existence as I know it... and I don't.
"Djiria?!" I exclaimed, followed by Belmont. Before us, the distortion had materialized, the vortex sprouting out arms and legs, or at least the figure of. As the distortion of space receded, the silhouette of bodies hardened and materialized. Before us stood a statue of Djiria leaning over Ozhuni, both the figures grey and colorless, frozen in time and space. Color slowly seeped into these figures, and I once more saw the green hair of Djiria. As the body seemed to color itself before my eyes, movement was given to the statues, and once more Djiria lived and breathe, before us right at this moment.
"What is this?!" Djiria said, as she looked around. Her legs wobbled, and she kneeled down, her hands on the ground, breathing hard through nose and mouth. Violently, she hurled, a brownish and greenish mixture coming from her mouth. Her face reddened, but she was unable to regain herself.
"Hello, my dear Djiria," Mortiery greeted sarcastically. "I did tell the class to follow me, did I not? And oh, I gave you so much time to. If only you didn't decide to stay behind for that weak fool Khizisiozhuni, maybe you might have lived. But, alas, I just can't allow such blatant insolence to exist."
Djiria did not respond. Maybe she couldn't. She did, while panting hard, however, manage to raise her head, and glared at Mortiery. Ozhuni seemed unable to respond. I wonder of the shock of that... thing, teleportation or whatever, and the strangulation had been too much, and caused him to die...
"What are you about to do to her?" Belmont slowly asked.
"My my," Mortiery started, "So inquisitive, my students, aren't you?"
"You sicko," I said.
"I give you a chance to die," Mortiery said to Djiria, "and I suggest that you take it."
Mortiery glanced up, and then we saw it; in the canopy of these unbelievably massive trees, we all saw a shadow move.
"There's something here, isn't there?" Belmont said.
"Many," was the reply.
Belmont was about to rush forward, past the light of the platform, but a hand grasped his shoulder.
"Beware, my students," he told us, as if he cared. "Once you step out of the circle, all protection will be stripped. They'll come for you suckers as well..."
Belmont took a step back, as if instinctively.
"Wait," I said. "We're already dead, aren't we? Why should it matter that we can die again."
"You can suffer," Mortiery told me with great disgust. "Seth, you can suffer as much as you want."
"For all I know, I already am," I replied brusquely, and then stepped out of the circle.
A chance to die, I thought. Djiria is given a chance to die, that means she is also given a chance to live.
And I'm going to live. Again.