Joined: 14 Jul 2008
|Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2016 3:31 am Post subject: Afterlight
|Spinning and tumbling crystalline shards somehow lit up the black. Distorted reflections flashed over their facets, distracting and confusing whilst shifting shadows crept on the periphery only to dart away into a slew of passages honeycombing the walls. It was deep and it was dark there, the air dry and cool and still beneath a high ceiling of solid earth latticed with ancient vines. Ruby blossoms peaked out between the spread of foliage, unfurling into ripened hues that blanketed the roof in a tapestry of green and red.
Mir tried to reach for them. It seemed important to do yet she found herself uncoordinated in motion, awkward and unfamiliar within a body quite alien to her. What should have been hands were narrow paws, tipped with long claws for digging and thick soft fur so darkly brown it was almost black. Startled and bewildered she nestled into the earth, her senses suddenly alive and wary for unknown dangers lurking down the tunnels leading to and from the burrow. She jumped when a single petal landed gracefully on the top of her nose and with a blink and a snuffle the doe settled on her haunches to gaze upward at the blooms, gently they shed and fluttered down like light snow and the rabbit curiously watched them drift to the ground til it was littered in a patchwork of delicate, silken vermillion.
A drop of moisture struck the tip of her ear, she flinched. One more that hit the earth nearby was quickly followed by another, warm and sticky it dribbled down her muzzle, there was no mistaking the smell; potent, rich and sharp. Blood. The blooms high above shrivelled and the vines dripped sanguine in a droning patter that echoed around the burrow, the floor muddied quickly soiling the petals and caking her feet. Foul, noxious gas seeped up through the earth, it stung her eyes and made her feel weak as she gagged on hot rancid air. The vine roof decayed to a putrid mass that sloughed down, threatening to cave in whilst the ground turned into a thick mire of primordial death that burned and blistered her paws.
The doe bolted. Fear and pain and hope sent her scrambling into one of the winding tunnels for she knew that she could run.
Run and keep running. Run and leap and twist down every path for that was what she had come to know, what she was resolved to do to succeed. But the ground violently shook, the earth simultaneously buckled below and tumbled from above her as the bowels of the world ripped asunder and pushed apart like the edges of an hours old wound tugged at and torn.
Daylight pierced the dark as Mir toppled upward and out into the world above, she rolled onto the grass a woman once more yet she felt heavy, distressed and broken in body, barely able to move but to turn her gaze to the sky. A wash of blue mottled by wisps of cloud transitioned into the pink and gold of twilight as the sun's last light withdrew beneath the curtain of night and the steady advance of a million stars. Then the heavens came apart, energy poured from out of a breach in the nightscape that seemed both far away yet unbearably close all at once.
Awestruck Mir could only watch as the sphere of a world; a series of land masses distinct in both size and shape surrounded by deep oceans ploughed past the edges of a colossal rend in the void. Realisation hit her with crippling force, the Daemons and the Long Walk, what she, what they had all done to save the world and now, weak and helpless, she could only watch her home fall from the sky. Its plummet toward Mir came in a heartbeat both at crushing speed and an agonising crawl, her mind span to witness the impending loss of absolutely everything. It hurt but she was numb, her eyes itched to weep but no tears came and a dread scream died in her throat.
And then she was suddenly laying upon the crest of the world as it soared out of the nether, awry and contorted monstrosities flashed past her vision in a flicker of time whilst cloud tails streamered the sky and the oceans swelled, foaming and spraying the edges of the shards. The world no longer fell but completed its ascent into the celestial tapestry of the universe, easing back into place amongst the heavens as though it was always meant to be. Such was the thought that reverberated loudest in Mir's mind as she felt herself slip off the edge of the world and into the hole in the sky whence it came.
As Mir fell she glimpsed the sun's rejuvenating light peak over the curve of the planet whilst below its mysterious, faithful, companion the moon slipped into its shadow. As she dropped further and further from the sphere of the world she saw glistening strands of red and green and blue and white encircling it within a great web. But the edges of her vision blackened again with twisting, horrific shapes.
And she fell and fell...
Someone had left Mir on a bedroll to recuperate in a quiet corner. Exhausted and shaken she had yet to stir since her collapse, her eyes flicked restlessly beneath closed lids and her breaths came quietly yet fast as a symphony of nightmares roamed her sleep.
IC - Chosokabe Mirshuko