In Darkness We Dwell

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In Darkness We Dwell

Post by Songhue »

OOC| It's officially too quiet again, so I'm going with another self RP. If anyone shows up with an interest in joining they're more than welcome.

BIC| You are undeniably impressive, M'Lady.

The gigantic wyvern rolled her eyes in abject dismissal, a fact which earned a derisive smirk from the black and flame coated stallion beside her. The deep indigo stud on her other side let out a snort; rather or not it was in amusement was hard to tell.

Caustic, the black stallion, gave his powerful muscles a long stretch and allowed the spikes on his shoulders to flex lazily. His was the most dangerous kind of strength; that which came easily.

Tell me, Mistress, what is it we wander towards?

Mind yer own, the beast rumbled, and continued her near-silent plodding. With only back legs and a pair of wings with which to balance upon, a soft leathery rustle and the faint click of claws accompanied her every move. The dark was so complete that spotting any detail was nearly impossible, even for Caustic's talented eyes, but he could see the dull gleam of the creature's eye as she glared straight ahead.

It's a fair question now, missy, BlackIce chastised. His indigo hide was only slightly more visible than the two black creatures he accompanied, though even that minor difference seemed to glare in the utter blackness.

The only answer he got was a rolling growl.

Be still, Caustic scolded, cutting a glare towards the flicker of blue on the other side of the sheer wall of dark which was his bonded, Else you risk more than a growl.

They were her only company. There was neither trees nor ground overhead to block the light in such an absolute manner, but instead clouds obscured the light from reaching the rolling stone mountainside. Occasionally a boulder would appear and while it loomed, even the scant bit of sight granted them was snatched away.

The air was charged with a pending storm, the scent sharp and crisp in their noses as the darkness overhead growled in a manner to mimic the massive wyvern's warning. Not so much as a flicker of light was to be seen; nor a whiff of plant or water, amid the stone face of the cliffs they wandered upon. The air was hot and sticky, yet a cold wind ripped at their eyes whenever the stones parted; none of them took any particular notice.

Away, the beast grumbled, making the two Serians wince and shy slightly at her sudden speech. That is where we are going.

Away from the light. Away from sounds and touch and all the others. Simply away.

Caustic took quite naturally to such austerity, but BlackIce was of a different mindset. He came for her; for 'the beast,' as the others said. He had no idea what brought Caustic along, in all honesty, but he himself came because few others could tolerate such a level of darkness; and someone had to keep an eye on her, had to make sure she would be alright until she went back again. From all accounts, this darkness was unlike Shine; and he knew he had the fortitude required to keep a proper eye on her.

The scrape of more claws caught his interest while he tossed a side-long glance towards Caustic, attempting to figure out this other's motivations. He did not entirely trust the warrior in this matter, though he knew that if trouble were to come he would be glad for the extra muscle.

A deep green appeared as he looked around, a rather intense relief in all the darkness, and BlackIce relaxed just a little more.

Hybrid, he breathed, glad to see what he could of the scaled stallion, What bring you here, Soldier?

Shine, he found, asked a similar question; through another growl, this one bordering on a roar as it built.

Just checking in, Ol' Son.

On what? All is black and dead. There is nothing to check on.

Noted, Hybrid murmured, quickly suppressing the lightning sparks that wanted to sizzle over his skin, Mountains are dark and lifeless at night.

If you could find something for her to eat, Caustic interjected, clearly trying to get the words out quickly, It would help. We found grass and a stream down at the foothills, but nothing for her in days.

That got her to stop.

Swinging her long neck around, Caustic was granted his first clear view of his bonded's face while in his form; and instantly felt himself hardening against fear. And he was the one that was supposed to have the deadly gaze...

If I wanted to eat, she said quietly, boring into his eyes with her own Then I would eat.

She waited long enough for him to blink before turning back to her walk, the leathery rustle of her wings quickly fading under the oppressive shadow of the pending storm.

Going for a walk with her while she's like this is...


Indeed, Caustic said dryly, letting out a low snort. They were used to her walking; it was a frequent event. And she always found at least one of them accompanying her. This was, however, their first time experiencing their bonded in this form for any significant length of time; they had walked with her in all others, but darkness of this level was rare in her.

Caustic found it reassuring; it gave him more to relate to her with. BlackIce was only focused on watching her until she reached another of her forms; shifting was not exactly voluntary for her. Both of them agreed that a walk was better than remaining in the home realm; the last thing some of their bond-mates needed was exposure to a complete absence of light.

Hybrid more or less agreed with BlackIce; he felt she bore watching while in this state. He didn't ask after her as a keeper, however, but as a companion. He was perfectly willing to give her the space she seemed to desire.

BlackIce would attempt to hide and continue his surveillance if it came down to it, be it for her own good or some demand.

For the moment, Hybrid merely shrugged and allowed himself to be left behind, content to return to his home realm.

Caustic, meanwhile, had his curiosity roused; ignoring the glares from BlackIce under the pretext of pretending not to see them, he went with it.

What do you eat?


You're huge in this form.

Large meat.

How do you hunt?

In answer, a pair of massive teeth came crashing together close enough to his snout for him to feel the vibration. A single tooth was as long as his body.

You are undeniably impressive, M'Lady.

Shine merely grunted.

They walked.

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Re: In Darkness We Dwell

Post by Songhue »

How fares the others, Little Miss?

He waited; he knew he'd have to. Typically the nickname for her would at least earn him a smile. Tonight, he was hoping for nothing more than an answer in reward.

She knew. Of course she knew, she always did. She wouldn't even have to check; it was simply her way to know. They were a part of her.

Placing it to words was another matter, one which she did not particularly enjoy. So she decided not to; instead, she drew the stud into her own mind and allowed him to be immersed in the sensations, impressions, thoughts and feelings of all those bound to her.

He knew where they were, could see them within his mind as his bonded shared her own, yet that was but a mere flicker of a glance to this level of perception. The important thing, the predominating thing was what state the rest of them resided in.

Sparkle was, in general, highly uncomfortable with the whole mess. Pure darkness still made him severely uncomfortable; he was staying as far away from it all as possible. Other than that, he was mostly content, if aware of the happenings within the bond-herd.

Path was allowing her confusion to devolve into anger. The sensation within her was akin to a tornado laying havoc to the plains, tearing deep gouges in the wide, rolling land. In her case, putting her mindset to words would be easy; explaining the insecurities would be all but impossible.

Sign was, surprisingly, frighteningly bitter. It was dreadfully clear that if she were capable of maneuvering through such darkness she would join them. That she was even hindered that much made her all the more sour. She was beginning to learn to hate. Hopefully the damage wasn't irreparable.

Hybrid was a little turbulent himself; he no longer had a green-horn colt to look after, with Darroch being so grown up, and this left him with his own little void to fill. So far, he was attempting a mixture of visiting his bond-mates, playing with his element more frequently and of course, mooning after his not-so-secret love (secret to her alone, that is).

Darroch himself was more than slightly overwhelmed, although this happens at such a point in life regardless of circumstances. Reaching his stallionhood, discovering his father for the first time, attempting to release Hybrid from the role of a surrogate and even looking at the cosmos in strange, new ways as he began to explore them as an adult. He was stepping into his role within the bond-herd now that he was of age; continuously keeping track of things, in order to help in maintaining the proper balance within the herd. If any of his bond-mates had a problem he was capable of resolving, he took care of it well before it escalated to a point that the entire herd or their bonded herself was required to step in. It was a high level of responsibility, as there were many with lower positions he was to routinely look after.

Flint on the other hand was content to visit with his bond-mates and spend as much time as possible alone with his mate. He had finally learned how to relax; being happy tends to do that. And Shiro made him very happy.

Frolic was barely even aware of anything outside her rain forest. She had learned to accept more of herself when last she came out, but like Sign she was more often than not choosing seclusion. This was of some concern to everyone. By all indications, they would soon have two mares who had grown to hate the outside world with a refusal to try.

Caelum was set adrift. He wished for the roots of his foals or mate, some tie into his history, as he was ready to move forward. Yet for the moment, there was no opportunity for such. He wandered the skies, working his own elemental abilities as he kept a protective eye on all who dwelled below.

Thyme was currently in love with his forest. He adored every aspect of it and was enjoying playing nourishing protector. He had a home again, finally; it would take a while before he would get over this fact and deign to play elsewhere, yet the time would come. Once he was finished loving his forest until they were one entity in their entirety.

Breeze was still pleased with having found his own mate. He had settled into a true stallion, at last, and no longer attempted to flee the attachment of every potential relationship. He was developing friendships, finally showing something other than a preparation to leave everything. He and Sparkle got on quite nicely, and he had a soft spot for both Path and Thorn.

Thorn himself was continuing to be prickly. Most of the time. Every now and again somebody would say something that would make an honest impact. The more this happened the more he relaxed and accepted a select few into his affections, but it was a slow process. Rather or not he would ever honestly lower his shields was debatable; although much like his rough forest, it was clear that there were a few available trails for save passage. His bond-mates were slowly discovering them, especially Thyme and Caelum.

Nova continued to feel out of place; a chaotic alien, visiting from her alien world. Only Breeze or her bonded made her feel fully loved and accepted, and so she spent a great deal of time within the frozen peaks of her mate when she did leave her own realm. To do otherwise was to go on a bit of an adventure; there was never any telling what might occur outside of this comfort. And she greatly enjoyed watching her stallion play with his wind-chimes. He derived a great joy from it, and this fact alone brought her real pleasure.

Caustic, stunningly enough, was also attempting to balance his inner state of being. While corrosive by nature, he did honestly care for not only his bonded but the others he shared her with. He knew active destruction would displease all of them and so he avoided it; it was an idle game for him anyway, as there was no challenge left in destroying. Instead, he faced off with the challenge of creating; in this case, creating relationships. To say that he would kill for any he deigned fell under his protection is nothing; to say that he would die for them, however, is a great statement indeed. And so it was.

And then there was him; BlackIce himself. He could see himself, his inner core, through his perspective within the walking lump of darkness. It was a singularly unique experience.

With none to guard over, he had become content to sit upon what might be called his front step within his new home and watch his visitors laugh and play. This was his joy in life; he no longer had to struggle to allow those he cared for to be happy. But still, his heart was old and the protectiveness had never left. It was why, given the chance, he had insisted upon acting as a guard for his bonded while she wandered in her current state. He had to watch, had to ensure that things would be alright; if he was to act, it would be when the time was right. He was a guardian, first and foremost.

He also both watched and felt it as he stumbled along in his bonded's wake, though he tried not to think of that too much once he slipped back within himself.

More than slightly stunned, the three of them lapsed back into silence, though he more felt than saw Caustic toss a raised brow in his direction.

Hooves clipped. Claws scraped. Wings rustled.

Darkness devoured.

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Re: In Darkness We Dwell

Post by Songhue »

It was comfortable there, in the neverending darkness. At least it was for her and Caustic. BlackIce took to it about as naturally as they, yet his dark was of a different nature than their own.

For the two, however, comforting itself was not exactly the correct term. Familiar, perhaps, would be better. This was a night so complete that there was no room for thought or emotion, nor hope or fears.

Something moved near by; something massive and nearly silent, the likes of which no Serian had ever seen during the day. It seemed to be no more than another of the boulders at first; until it was gone from one instant to the next.

There was a flash as the glowing orbs of the wyvern beast dashed around, the head shooting out in an instant. Whatever had been there was now a meal; BlackIce felt his heart grow hard as a few quick sound painted a picture that was all too clear.

They kept walking.

You should see what dwells within my river.

I know well what lays within thy waters, boy. Your land is too bright and the prey insufficient, else they would in turn be preying upon your own hide.

Frowning, Caustic felt his spine tingle and twitch. If he had hackles they would have given a clear indication on his thoughts. As it was he had none, nor did he need them. Not with these two.

Do not forget yourself, the quiet voice warned most threateningly, Nor the shadow in which you walk.

To seal the point she turned her head, only just slightly, and let her massive gaze meet his own. Though he glared petulantly, she didn't so much as blink; he looked away first. Powerful though he was, his deadly gaze held no sway over her. And considering the top of her claw was well above the tips of his ears, he doubted his acid-dipped spikes would do him a lick of good either.

His way was obtaining power with fear and force. When neither worked, the general attitude that hung upon him as if an aura of death did most of the work in regards to breaking the minds of others. In general, his presence was enough to make a laugh, any moment of light and love, seem weak and foolish. None of it touched him; it made others uncomfortable, and it dampened any joy.

None of this was of use against the demon beside him.

He had never before been out-matched, and he found he rather enjoyed the sensation. And yet, in moments like this when he had to shift from respect to grudging submission of the facts, he also detested it. He could not choose when he wished to be under another's care; and she did not allow him the luxury of such an illusion.

Could you become trapped this way, if you don't shake it off, little miss?

BlackIce had no mind for his bond-mate's pouting. Everyone in their group went through it; a moment where they got a rough reminder that they could not get away with acting without regard. Even Frolic was granted a slap upside the head and forced back into the world from time to time.

I am never trapped.

I have been.

Speaking of Frolic...

She was not a creature of such dismal darkness, and yet here she was. It must have been hard to find them, even with her link to their bonded, for her legs were plenty scratched and abused. The sharp scent of blood preceded her in the night.

Trapped within my mind, within my forest, my history. I am done with it.

There was a new steel in her voice. This was not the Frolic that the others had spoken of; the one with deep-running tenderness and a desire to heal herself.

She sounded angry.

The wyvern merely snorted. She did not pause or change her pace. Frolic would keep up, or she would not, scratched up legs or not.

If the mare was that determined, then she would prove it.

Frolic fell in step beside Caustic.

Shine gave a snarling hum deep in her chest.

She sounded pleased.

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Re: In Darkness We Dwell

Post by Vineda »

A long shadow drifted along behind the group, listening perhaps? Did shadows listen? It moved utterly soundlessly, without a stir to the air. If not for sight would one even know it passed? Ah, but the rock knew. The rock felt the slight coldness for an instant as the shadow slid over its craggy surface.

A very insubstantial shadow, not any deepest black. There was no real light to give contrast and definition, no source of strength. And yet. Still the shadow persisted. As a dusky amethyst mare considered the ins and outs of shadows, one shadow intimately connected to her made its own rules.

Could a sharp mind sense her existence here, one shadow among many? She had no doubt. 'Twas a matter of time, unless she missed her guess. Weariness wove through this shadow, and frustration that was being purposely steered away from any kindling, any growing. Doubt allowed to linger in order to keep despair at bay. A gray cloudy shadow blanket had woven itself into form, that perhaps time might pass from darkness to dawn in a simple, easy dusky haze.
And I don't know how To slow it down Oh, my mind's racing From chasing pirates.

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Re: In Darkness We Dwell

Post by Songhue »

The only thing worse than the mis-matching of darkness was the intrusion of light.

You don't belong here.

No sooner had the words left him than Shine growled, low and deep. It sounded as if a landslide had started. For the first time in his life, Caustic felt true fear; he knew, all too well, the words that would have accompanied it had he been any but one of her precious bonded.

I belong where I choose.

Though she was not a demonic, two-legged dragon, there was a growl of her own sort woven into Frolic's words, and a clear challenge. Her heart, at the least, was utterly black; for the moment.

The greatest benefit of being a creature of such darkness was that one usually knew the way back out, towards the light.

But soft, Shine thought, giving her tail the slightest of twitches while they meandered along the path, another is near. I feel something, that which has no name and yet indicates the presence of unseen life.

She sensed the life, yet did not search for it. It did not feel as the prey from earlier had, nor did it feel as if it would cause any of her darlings harm; although, should it attempt to do so, it would still pose little threat. She was with them.

No matter. I shall tolerate it. For now.

This is a part of the healing process, lass, though you may not think as much now. You know my own part of our realm is dark, although it may be a might cold for you missy.

Your darkness is not for me, BlackIce... Yet.

You would not survive within my lands.

I do not seek a dark world, nor do I seek any other thing.

You must want company, at the least, else why come?

To live. Or have you objection to that, Ol' Son? Am I not to go where I am most comfortable, where black anger can thrive beside the kindred darkness of another heart?

My heart is not dark, child, nor is yours. Think. Do not insult yourself so.

Silence. None dared to argue; few dared to breathe.

I am angry, Frolic finally admitted, lifting her head higher with a small note of defiance gleaming in her eye, I refuse to be hurt or lost any longer. My heart is hardened against such abuse. But it is not entirely blackened, nor is there active hate. Does this please you, M'Lady Bonded?

Another growl, this one slightly less severe. It was not smart to needle the Strangeling, yet still she understood. It is naught to do with pleasing me, girl, but of not deceiving thy own self. Mock me not, for you try my patience. Keep your defensive shroud, even allow yourself anger that you were not rescued as you well would have rescued them no matter your own state of affairs. But Do. Not. Mock. Me!

Frolic stumbled, though she caught herself before she could fall. The full force of the words had temporarily made her knees give out; even Caustic had flinched.

Whatever their choices, I no longer need them. The twins are grown. The mate is gone. My life is my own, and they are naught but so much scattered trash within my mind.

You ain't fooling me, miss. Your mind still frightens you, to some extent. You lost your sanity for a while there, I am told, and though your head and heart spun around at the speed of light you were not the one holding the reigns.

A whinny, shrill and angry, followed his declaration; then a soft, muffled thud. Frolic had turned and bucked, BlackIce striking far too close to home for her comfort; and in her current mindset, rather than retreating with the discomfort or giving in to the fear he challenged her to give truth to, she had attacked. Shine, however, moved a little faster. Frolic's spikes had landed in one of Shine's toes instead, embedded all the way to the mare's hocks and unquestionably stuck.

If you were not who you are, Shine whispered, I would eat you for that.

The anger is natural, BlackIce told her, his voice surprisingly hard and unwavering, yet while this defense of yours is raised you must keep control of it.

Good shot.

Shine rolled her eyes. Leave it to Caustic.

Speak with Flint when you feel capable. He knows of this hurt-turned-anger better than you; perhaps better than you ever shall.

With that, she reached over with the claw of one wing and promptly hooked the very tip under the mare's stomach, lifting her front half up in order to angle the spikes on her back legs properly to get them free. Frolic was no idiot; she did not squirm or panic, or even seem to care at all that she had the massive claw of a dragon holding up her body from beneath. Within moments she was upon the ground once again, her legs now dripping with black blood that shone dully.

If it is the next stage of healing for Tiger Lily, what has you in such a state?

Mind your own, Caustic.

You're my bonded. Rather or not you like it, you are my own.

I have my own wounds. At times they ache. When the burden is too great, I find new ways to cope.

Loss of your own, Little Miss?

Nothing to concern you.

... I was not always so callous.

Silence. An inviting silence. He couldn't even hear them breathing.

That was one thing he was still learning. Everyone within the bondherd was encouraged to not only share, but to welcome and encourage this sharing.

They were family. It was only proper to be there for one another.

Before, with my first bonded, I was not this dark. Not this sort of dark. I had power, and I was protective, but I was not callous and cruel. Merely a protector.

Yer still a protector, Son. I've seen how closely you keep an eye on everyone. You've just had to lose your own protection, and that's quite a wound. I know how it is, being the one to keep watch and look after others while you have no such guardian your own self.

I felt lost, for a long while. I am not lost any more. I'm tired of being weak, is what I am. I will not let myself be held back any longer.

I refuse to be denied my life.
I refuse to be denied my life.
I refuse to be denied my life.
I refuse to be denied my life.

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Re: In Darkness We Dwell

Post by Songhue »

They walked, the four of them, through the shadows of darkness. Stoic indifference, corrosive force, distant coldness and black anger were, for the moment, granted physical form.

They had spoken in unison before, yet silence had again weighed heavily as soon as the last whisper was swallowed.

After a while their number was only two.

BlackIce gave a toss of his head, sending a quick glare at Frolic to let her know her mistake had not been forgotten as he slipped away and began to follow at the unseen edges. He did not want to be a part of this group; acidic bitterness was bad enough company in such a situation, throwing in a hothead was not something he wanted to put up with. Yet it wasn't in him to merely bail. He would watch, and protect if he had to.

The aforementioned 'hothead' found them quite boring after a moment or two herself. Though her legs were growing sticky from her bonded's blood, she didn't feel like finding a stream to wash up. Instead, she shot off in a random direction; attempting to climb the mountain, attacking the landscape and putting all her new, raging energy into the struggle.

It was only Cuastic and the great dragoness now. And their unseen watcher. Caustic still had no idea there was another, and Shine was only vaguely aware of it; it could just as well have been an errant tickle along her spine. It did not much matter either way.

She is slow to heal.

You disapprove.


You are bitter and cruel. Your heart is dark and unforgiving, banishing any thoughts of true affection which reaches beyond protection or possession. You may not judge her.

She was weakened far more than is acceptable.

It does not have to be deemed acceptable to you in order to be truth. She was damaged. She is not any longer. You are small and petty to sneer upon the wounds of one brave enough to have risked them.

It was a foolish risk, then.

There is no risk which is greater than that of true love.

Says the dragon-two-legs which destroys with as much ease as is in the blink of an eye.

I am also the moon-and-earth beaver which has held the head of a mare while she birthed her first foal.

Another example of love being a mistake.

It is a risk, and it can be a weakness. Yet it is only one which the strongest of hearts may be burdened with. Weaker beings are crushed. Not damaged, Caustic, but crushed. They forget love entirely; they no longer know how to love at all.

I am not so weak.

You are. You loved, once. This is why you came to me; you wanted it back. There is reason that so many take such a risk, and well do you know of it. You will not find it here, dearling, nor by condemning others. It is a light which warms all that is unseen.

If such is the case then it shall never be known to me, for I am of the depths of darkness.

Even the darkest night has light somewhere.

She turned her head and looked at him, meeting his gaze once again; the only one to ever dare, as his eyes were so well known for their deadly powers. The clouds turned overhead; and for a moment, they parted. The moon, a waning smile tilted sideways in bemusement, filtered down for a moment to touch their faces.

He saw her clearly in that moment, the form which held his bonded. And he saw her in a new light, for never had he thought she would have such a face as he witnessed. She was terrible.

Then the clouds closed and he felt his heart start to beat again.

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