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  1. #21
    August



    August was glad to see Varash leave. While before he just didn't like him, with this news, August hated him. He stayed in his office to collect his thoughts and make sure the lord couldn't read his mind and learn what he truly thought of him. He was breathing slowly to calm down, when he heard the lord yelling at him to calm down the nightmare horse.

    "Yes, my lord."

    August called out and was angry that Varash had gotten the queen's stallion worked up. The creature did not care for many people and no doubt thought of August as his own personal slave. Which he was, after all, August was sure the queen would have his head if her horse was not properly taken care of. He grabbed the brush he only used on the nightmare and told him in a quiet and soothing voice as he brushed his coat.

    "There, there, boy. Calm down, I know you don't like him."

    August almost offered up that he didn't like the lord either but thought it was best to not say that out loud.


  2. #22
    Founder Jason Sanborn is offline Jason Sanborn's Avatar
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    The Nightmare Stallion

    What existed in the mind of the nightmare was known to the nightmare alone. Not even his Mistress was able to read its thoughts. Not that anyone ever tried to read his thoughts anyway. To Varash, he was an annoyance. To his Mistress, he was just her mount. To the stable master, though, there was something else. He wasn't just an animal, or an annoyance. Something to be feared, of course, but everyone feared the nightmare, whether they admitted to the fear or not.

    The stallion turned its head to look into the stable master's eyes. No one ever looked into the eyes of a nightmare willingly. Doing so was said to unleash all the person's nightmares and bring them to the day, driving men mad. Varash was only able to look into the nightmare's eyes due to the protection of the crystal, but even then, Varash was still left disquieted. Yet now, he stared into the eyes of the stable master, a simple human with no protection for his mind. The man who tended to his needs and seemed to genuinely care for him. Despite this, the stallion's deathly gaze fell upon him.
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    QC1: From this day forth you shall be called "Sprinkle Berryweather".

    Kevin Flynn: The Grid. A digital frontier. I tried to picture clusters of information as they moved through the computer. What did they look like? Ships, motorcycles? Were the circuits like freeways? I kept dreaming of a world I thought I'd never see. And then, one day... ...I got in!




  3. #23
    Sari & Kari



    The twins decided to forget about Lord Varash, his offer, and what that meant for their own futures and for Belenus for a little while. They headed back into Kapo's chamber and Sari quickly found the small sack of gold she had found earlier. Kari frowned.

    "It's not much."

    "I know but you know the moogle likes junk."

    Sari replied, they rarely found anything good in Kapo's chamber. The book had been the best thing they had ever found.

    "Yeah but...The queen will wonder why we were gone so long and this small amount of gold won't please her."

    "You're right."

    Sari said, agreeing with her sister. The queen would often keep track of how long they were gone, making sure they were carry out their jobs and not doing anything that could be considered treacherous. Giving the book to Varash would be....Sari thought a moment and added.

    "Let's look around again. He seems to have taken some of the junk back to where he is. Maybe there's something we missed earlier."

    "Maybe."

    Kari said, she doubted it but it was worth a second look around.

  4. #24
    August



    August couldn't explain what bond he had with the nightmare stallion. Yes, he was a little afraid of it, everyone was but there was something else too. Perhaps because he spent so much of his day caring for him, August cared about him as well. Not that he would ever day to ride the nightmare or even think the horse cared about him that much. When his father had begun his training to take over as stable master, he taught him many things. One of the most important things was to never, ever, look into the nightmare's eyes. It would drive a man mad. Since his father's retirement, August had taken great care to never look into the horse's eyes. Today, though, he forgot that important lesson. He was still angry at Lord Varash and he was distracted thinking about what he had told him. That he had made a deal with Sari and Kari and that Belenus had to go work for him now. It made him angry, they were the only people left he cared about in this world. Normally he was able to resist the nightmare's calls to look into his eyes. Today, he failed. He looked up and screamed out when his eyes met the nightmare's. He dropped the brush and fell backwards onto the hay. His gaze never leaving the horse's. He couldn't stop looking at him, unless the nightmare stallion decided it was over.
    Last edited by Optimus Prime; 01-28-2015 at 12:09 PM.

  5. #25
    Founder Jason Sanborn is offline Jason Sanborn's Avatar
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    The Nightmare Stallion

    The nightmare's eyes glowed orange with its inner fire as he stared into August's eyes. All of August's worst fears would be dragged from his subconscious and laid bare, as if the nightmares manifest themselves right in front of August's eyes, as if they were real. August would be paralyzed with fear, unable to do anything except stare into the nightmare's eyes and witness the horrors that passed before his eyes. In the center of the chaos, though, was the nightmare. Always the nightmare.

    Normally, the nightmare would break its gaze and leave the victim in a state of madness until they are driven to death from their fears. The nightmare did not desire this fate for the stable master. The stallion wanted more from him. The nightmare stomped it's front feet. In August's eyes, the nightmare would have been engulfed in flames, its mane and feet crackling in the fire. Wings of fire extend from its sides. The heat from it would be felt straight to August's core. In reality, though, the nightmare was just standing as it had been staring into August's eyes. The nightmare would not speak in words to August, but it would communicate. It would do so through the nightmare images running before August's eyes. Imagery, if understood, would help lead August out of the darkness that now surrounded him.

    The flaming nightmare in August's mind began to lash out at the fears. Stomping on them. Breathing fire on others. The images would not stop, though. The nightmare could unleash the darkest fears, but it had no power to destroy those fears. That power rested solely upon the one witnessing the fears, and the strength of mind of that individual.

  6. #26
    August



    August's body might have been sitting on the hay in the nightmare's stall and was perfectly safe, but his mind wasn't. August thought he was in the town market and it was on fire. People were screaming, the queen had finally been pushed too far by her citizens and she decided the only thing they all deserved was death. August could see the nightmare horse in the center of the market, the flames from its tail and mane were burning as bright as the streets were.

    "August! Help!"

    August turned at the sound of the woman's voice saw a battered and beaten Kari. She looked like she been through a battle and had been on the losing side.

    "Kari! What-"

    August reached for his friend.

    "We shouldn't have trusted-She took Belenus-We have to help Sari get him before-"

    Before Kari could say anymore, a flaming arrow struck her chest. Killing her instantly.

    "No!"

    August yelled, dropping to his knees, hoping that Kari hadn't been killed. She bled out on the cobblestones and a quick check of her pulse confirmed she was gone. August cursed and knew that the "she" Kari had meant was the queen. Sari and Kari never should have made the deal with Lord Varash.

    "I'll get him back."

    He promised Kari, squeezing her hand one last time before standing up. The nightmare horse was still staring at him but August didn't have time to deal with him. He had to help Sari rescue her nephew. When the queen wanted to truly punish someone, she beheaded them. She'd take the boy to the guillotine, August was sure of that. He ran, noticing the nightmare following him. Odd, it never ran, just was always in the center of his eyesight. August didn't have time to think it through, he had to save Belenus from the queen! He ran as fast as he could but it wasn't fast enough. He and Sari arrived on opposite sides of the square where the guillotine was proudly presented. Belenus was terrified and crying for his mother. August and Sari arrived just in time for the executioner to chop off the young boy's head.

    "NO!"

    Both he and Sari screamed in unison. Before August could move, Sari ran at the executioner with tears rolling down her face, ready to kill for what he had done to her nephew. Unfortunately the executioner anticipated her attack and was ready for her. He swung his ax at her and-Suddenly the nightmare stallion was stomping his feet. Sari and the queen's executioner were frozen in place. August got confused, the flames around him died down and the queen's executioner was set on fire. August cautiously made his way to the woman he had never stopped loving.

    "...Sari?"

    He said but she didn't respond. In fact, thanks to the horse, she and scene slowly disappeared around August. He was back in the stall. Just him and the nightmare stallion. For a few minutes his mind was confused about what was real and what wasn't. The nightmare where Kari and Belenus had died and Sari was sure to follow had felt real but it wasn't...This was...At least he thought so, he wasn't too sure anymore.

    "What did you do to me?"

    He asked the horse. Logic told him that horses couldn't reply but this wasn't an ordinary horse either.

  7. #27
    Founder Jason Sanborn is offline Jason Sanborn's Avatar
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    The Nightmare Stallion

    The stallion stomped its foot and nodded its head at August's question. It approached August slowly, nonthreatening. When close enough, it lowered its muzzle and pressed it to August's head. Such an action might be seen in a common horse, but from a nightmare, it was something practically unheard of. It gave a snort, and August would feel the hot breath like steam from boiling water, over his face. After the single snort, it raised its head again and took a few steps back, turning its gaze away once more.

  8. #28
    August & Belenus




    The nightmare stallion didn't actually answer August's question. What he did do surprised August very much. He had never tried to pet the horse in his life and it never showed much affection to anyone either. August cautiously reached up and touched the side of the stallion's muzzle. His breath felt hot and August's forehead was sweating in response to it. He watched the horse move back and take its normal spot in the stall. Before August could try to understand in his head what happened he heard his father's voice from behind him.

    "I told you to never look in that beast's eyes, boy."

    August jumped, he had hadn't heard his father's voice in about ten years. Not since a heart attack had taken his life. He turned and saw him, his father was here. But that couldn't be possible, could it? No, his father was dead. What was...

    "Dad? I-"

    Before he could say more, Belenus came in and his father was gone.

    "Mister August? You okay?"

    He asked, worried to see the stable master sitting on the hay in the nightmare stallion's stall and looking like he had seen a ghost. August shook his head and got to his feet.

    "Umm, I'm fine...."

    "You sure? Because you-"

    "I said I'm fine!"

    August yelled and Belenus was taken back. August rarely raised his voice. Instantly August felt like a jerk. He ran a hand through his hair and told him.

    "I'm sorry, I just...We need to get you cleaned up."

    "For what?"

    The boy asked and August replied.

    "You're going to be working for Lord Varash starting tonight."

    "I am?"

    Belenus asked, not liking the news but being old enough to know that he couldn't argue about it, and August nodded his head. He told Belenus to follow him and get him presentable for his new master.
    Last edited by Optimus Prime; 02-25-2015 at 11:57 AM.

  9. #29
    Founder Jason Sanborn is offline Jason Sanborn's Avatar
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    Jas and Kapo

    A short distance from where Sari and Kari were searching, a group suddenly appeared in the darkness from somewhere else.

    "...I just sent... kupo? Who turned out the lights, kupo?" Kapo's voice echoed in the darkness of the chamber. One minute he was in the Inn, the next he was in darkness. Was he even still in the Inn? "Hello, kupo?"

    "I am here, wherever here is" Jas responded, looking around in the darkness. His crystal around his neck glowed with a faint light, casting an eerie glow around the new arrivals.

    "You mean we're not where we were, kupo?" Kapo asked, looking at Jas and his glowing crystal.

    "No, and we are not alone here, either. There are two other women here." He pointed toward a distant light where Sari and Kari were searching.

    Kapo looked off in the direction Jas was pointing. He couldn't make out anything more than shadows. "Women, Kupo? How can you tell, kupo? I only see shadows, kupo."

    "It does not matter. We should go talk to them. Who else is here with us?" Jas turned his attention to the others, who appeared little more than shadows in the faint glow of his crystal.

  10. #30
    Sari & Kari



    Before the group had arrived, Sari and Kari had been searching for at least a half an hour in Kapo's chamber for something else that would be good to bring to the queen. The sisters were beginning to believe it would was going to be a waste of time, when Kari almost tripped over the nice bag of gold Mystik Chronicler had given the dragon band back at the inn.

    "Oh, wow, Sari...Look at all this gold!"

    She said, it was so much gold, that Kari couldn't even pick up the bag. Sari had been tossing trash around in annoyance when her twin called her over. She actually jumped in excitement.

    "That's awesome! The queen-"

    Suddenly the twins realized they were no longer alone. Both grabbed the daggers they carried on their belt loops. They thought that other treasure hunters were here. It was very common around the dimension for treasure hunters to try and steal from each other. The twins never did that but others weren't as honorable as they were. The twins knew how to fight but never tried to start trouble. If trouble came to them, though, they were willing and capable of defending themselves.

    "Who's there?!"

    Kari called out and Sari added.


    "Get lost! We were here first!"

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