Monday, August 22, 2011

Faery Devilry

He ducked inside the dank room through the curtain of putrid rags that served as a door to the hut. Kade stood motionless and silent, respectfully allowing the woman of the well to speak first. She looked over him, criticizing him, with two dark eyes in a web of wrinkles,“Ach, thar ye be lad.” He nodded, “aye.” She stirred the boiling dye in the pot with a mottled ladle. “Thar be the hatchet.” Kade reached out and took it, accidentally brushing against her dress. He hefted it up onto his shoulder and noticed how suddenly motionless she had become. “Kade...come here, to me...” Her voice had changed immensely, gone was the thick accent, and gone was the raspy, aged tone. He lowered the hatchet threateningly. The old woman turned toward him, she reached out with knobbly grasping hands, her eyes had come alight with greed, “come here!” Kade’s chest heaved as she came closer, he feared her, and did not know why the deep-set dread had washed over him, leaving him lightheaded and sick. “No.” The single word resounded in the little hut, the pots and pans hanging on the walls swayed, and she stopped shuffling towards him, as he had hardly noticed her doing. The woman had suddenly gone back to normal and berated him, “Why are ye jes standin’ thar lad?! Di nae waste my time!” Kade hefted the axe back onto his shoulder, “Aye, where do ye want me tae chop your wood?” “In the Silvae.” Kade blinked, somehow this seemed wrong to him. He had always, and until now, successfully, avoided cutting down trees in the Silvae. “Aye.”

He ducked out of the hut and straightened himself. He glanced up and down the dirt road, meager huts lined the road, street urchins played in the bushes alongside it, further along was the main town, where the blacksmith, and all the craftsmen and farmers lived. But here, lining the dirty road, was where the fieldworkers, the beggars, the bond-servants, and other non-landowning churls lived. Kade pushed away the nagging feeling of injustice and walked quietly across the road to the other side.

Mammoth trees leaned over him, their dark shapes silhouetted against the overcast sky. He heaved a sigh of contentment, this was where he felt truly safe and at home, here, in the forest. Kade walked silently through the behemoth trees, the giant monarchs of the forest, smaller trees grew around them. The density of the forest gradually thickened until Kade literally had to crawl on his belly at times. He had natural flexibility, Kade was skinny, but somehow seemed graceful and purposeful in his movements so that he moved noiselessly and easily through the complex web of trees, vines and branches, as if he were part of the gnarled and intertwined forest.

The deeper Kade went into the Silvae, the more troubled he became. Finding a suitable tree he lifted the axe. Despite all his efforts, he could not bring himself to strike, even one blow. His breathing became irregular, and a rushing sound filled his ears, a cold sweat broke over him and his hands trembled, even holding up the accustomed weight of the hatchet was a trial. Finally he dropped the axe, picked it up, and walked away towards the outer edge of the forest, where it felt safe to chop trees down, hoping desperately that the woman would not somehow know that the wood did not come from the forest.

Kade ducked back into the hut, the woman was no longer stirring dye, but had now pinned the pieces of colored cloth to cord that crisscrossed around the ceiling of the hut. He stood quietly with the wood, after a minute of her silence, Kade walked back out of the hut to place the logs in the wood-box. He was ducking back out when her voice stopped him, “Lad...let me see them logs.” He turned back and handed her a piece. The woman scrutinized the wood, feeling it’s grain and lifting it to feel the weight, finally she muttered a series of nonsensical words, licked her finger, and placed a drop of sap on it. She stared at it quietly. “This wood did nae come from the silvae lad.” Kade stood quietly. “Prove it” The woman smirked, “Thar be no need to when both o’ us know whar it come from.” Kade frowned, “But you don’t.” The woman dropped the wood and grabbed his arm in her brown, claw-like hand, “Why couldn’t you lad?” The piercing eyes delved into him, and yet he couldn't look away. “I see how it be...” She let go and furrowed her brow, closing her eyes, “Then ye can nae work for meh.” Kade clenched his teeth, “Why not?” The woman answered without looking at him, “If I were a normal old woman I’d ‘ave said tis because you lack truthfulness, but I ain’t.” She took a deep breath, “I can nae have ye in my house. Go.”

Kade stumbled out of the ramshackle hut, confused. He ground his teeth, brow furrowed, it had been rumored that the woman of the well was insane. He had not believed it until now. There was no other explanation for her behavior, but nevertheless, he would pay for her insanity. Taking a deep breath to compose himself and his spinning mind, he jumped out of the ditch alongside the road where the hovel was, and walked down it, mingling inconspicuously with the rest of the crowd. Kade could walk through a crowd with the same ease that he could make his way through the Silvae. As he neared the center of town his sharp blue eyes saw every detail of the crowded scene. The stalls of different goods lined the town square, they cried out in loud shrill voices, urging customers that their goods were superior to others. In the center of the town square, towering over the scene like a dark omen was the gallows, the rope noose hung down, swaying slightly in the breeze. Kade shuddered, next to the gallows was a large bared cage, inside the cage were the stocks for criminals guilty of large offense, outside the cage were stocks for criminals held for common offenses. The sound of the church bells ringing boomed over the bustling square, a respectful silence fell over the area, and Kade slipped away as three prisoners were lead to the platform, the only thing he took the time to notice, was that one of them, was a girl. Women rarely committed crimes, they were all well subdued within the home.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Devon 6

Damien pulled on his leather jacket and started shoving various random things that were thrown around his room into his pockets, of which there were many. Ultra portable scanners, literally the size of quarters, mini remote activated bombs, As a finishing touch, he pulled out a tiny laser gun that fit and stuck to the palm of his hand and underneath his glove. In one fluid motion he swung out of the open window and landed silently in the dirt road beneath, pulling his hood over his face, he crept swiftly toward his goal. The streets were ominously silent except for the occasional tramp of a lawman’s boots, but Damien rarely trod the main roads where law ruled. No, Damien stayed in the dark alleyways, hidden from the sight of even the Illustrious Aristocracy. When he reached the end of the alleys, he saw before him a long plain of grass, neatly mowed and trimmed, there was a sidewalk that lead up to the huge and well lit building, the HQ of the Aristocracy. Damien walked up to a small disk that was right next to the border of the yard, he smugly flipped open a hatch and pulled his lithe body through the small hole, if his estimations proved correct, as they always did, this tunnel would take him straight to his prey, not without a few difficulties along the way, that would be too easy.

Devon pulled off her vest and sighed, the stress of the week rolling off her like water off a duck’s back. She tumbled onto her cot and fell fast asleep. A few minutes later the lock on the door slid open silently and Damien stood there, his silhouette outlined ever so faintly by the soft gray light that filtered through the vents into the tunnel. He was tired, her traps had put him to the test, but he had survived, and there was no way that he was going to walk into another, he had been working on the lock alone for the last five minutes. Damien scanned the room, and scanned it again, using different key words, and eventually a full scan to check for anything that could possibly be there, but to his immense surprise and gratification, the girl was too smug and full of herself to believe that anyone could get through her traps. Damien grinned despite himself, he wasn’t just anyone. He leaned quietly over her sleeping form and ever so gingerly laid a soft swab of fabric over her eye and cheek, he waited a few minutes before he was sure the numbing substance on the swab had done its work, and then he pried her eye open and pulled out the lens. The light was far too dim to examine it now, so he put it in a minuscule pouch that was attached to his belt. He then looked around to see what other damage he could inflict before leaving. Damien made a note to get a symbol sometime, they were impractical, but he could afford to be impractical. It would be so fun to spray paint something onto her wall. Suddenly he stiffened and crouched down, rendering himself nearly invisible in the shadow of her cot. A slight girl prowled in, her soft leather boots making less than no sound on the metal ground. She made a slightly disgruntled guttural sound in her throat, Damien couldn’t decide whether it signified confusion or contempt. The girl crept forward even further and unsheathed a small knife, Damien quickly noticed the liquid covering it--poison. Without thinking, he stood up and kicked the girl in the gut, she fell to the ground, her blade clanging on the floor. Devon half sat up, but Damien picked her up and jumped over the still-prone girl, who jumped up, wielding a gun. Damien laid his palm flat and shot at her a few times. The girl dodged them with stunning flexibility and he shut the door, and ran. The door was burst from its hinges and the girl made a last attempt, a wild shot, but it hit its mark. The struggling Devon, trying to get out of his grip, gasped and immediately stopped struggling and instead lay limp and gasping for breath. Another girl, who looked exactly the same as the first, for all he could see, popped up in front of him, wielding another gun, he dodged the shots and went the only other available direction--up, into the heavily guarded transition room.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Devon 5

Damien ran to the window and tossed a small tracking device through the shattered section, it magnetized towards the girl’s back and landed without a sound, immediately fastening itself and turning into the exact color and texture of her shirt. A wry grin made its way across Damien’s face, it disappeared as soon as he turned around. What had taken the girl just minutes to wreck, would now take him weeks to fix. He walked to the other end of the room and flattened his hand out against the wall, three seconds later something briefly flashed green and he walked into his room. The room he walked into was invisible to the outsider’s glance, covered completely of what he called “chameleon tape,” namely, duct tape that had been altered by him to take on the color and texture of its surface. Damien had made his new “room” the shape of a half circle, jutting out of the side of the apartment building, then he had carefully painted it to look like the flat surface that the building would look like originally, then, he covered it all with his” chameleon duct tape.” No-one would know it was there. Damien rubbed his hands together gleefully in anticipation, he sat down in his desk chair and turned on the computer, on one tab he saw the map of the dimension, along with the girl as a red circle of light making her way across it. In another tab he was searching his database, his database he called it, but it was not. Damien had hacked into the official records of new developments in technology, the ORNDT. As he scanned the contents, one particular invention caught his eye. Contact lens, electric contact lenses. That must be what the girl had, well, he would take her advantage away from her. Chuckling, he glanced at the map, she had stopped now, but he took a double-take when he saw where she was. The girl was smack-dab under the Head Quarters of the Dimension Six Aristocracy.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Devon 4

Devon was well hidden in a crevice and watched gleefully as Damien walked past her. Devon had done her research and emerged from her hiding place and began walking to Damien’s apartment. Ohhhh he would be furious, how he would rage! Five flights up and to the left, a simple door faced her, she knew it was anything but simple. Refraining from scanning it with her lens, she instead leaned down and looked it over visually, then pulled a handful of dust out of one of her pockets, flattened her hand, and blew the dust towards the door. Five seconds later, the dust revealed a sheet of laser across the door, slightly in front of the handle. Blowing more dust, Devon confirmed that it was an unbroken sheet across the entire door. She pushed a button on her wrist, turned the handle, and walked in, unaffected by the sheet of laser. Devon allowed herself a smug smile. A rigged bomb was in the apartment, set for one minute after the arrival, of an unrecognized life form; Devon quickly located it and set on a convenient way to destroy it. She mischievously lifted his computer and threw it at the bomb. Both the bomb and the computer were reduced to a smoldering heap of hardware. Devon then ransacked the place, throwing contents of drawers everywhere, upsetting tables, turning over his bed, even going so far as to stab holes in the wall. When she was content with her work, she turned to leave. A small door caught her eye, one that she had missed before, opening it, she peered inside. A small machine was in the middle of the room, it had a bracelet of sorts attached to a thick vine of wires, the wires lead to a strange apparatus, but before she had time to examine it or destroy it, the front door opened. “WHAT IN THE WORLD HAPPENED?!?!?!?!” Damien sounded outraged; that was good, Devon wanted him outraged, she just hadn’t wanted to be present for it. She heard his footsteps leading to the hidden room and opened the door to bolt, instead, she was face to face with him. His eyes were gray and angry, fury and frustration filled them. Devon made a note to remember this, this mysterious fellow who kept even more mysterious machines in his apartment, was easily upset. He glared at her, surprised to see her there, relieved to see his machine intact, and angry at her for ruining his apartment. In short, he didn’t know what to do. Devon took advantage of that fact, and barreled past him, jumping gracefully out of the open window and falling lightly on the tin roof below. “Bye!” She called cheerfully. Ahh he would rue the day he picked a fight with D-11-3.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Devon 3

. Devon shut the door and looked to the left and the right, a little ruddy-faced boy with shaggy hair gaped at her. She felt for the handle again, looking behind her, but there was no door now, not even a knob. The door was gone. Devon stared at it curiously for a second, then shrugged and stepped briskly through a narrow alley. She had always been a creature of purpose, and had always made sure she knew what her mission was. Devon had her mission now.
And what is that mission?” A mischievous voice asked from next to her. Devon looked to her left, there was a skinny boy, maybe her age, with light blue eyes, almost gray looking, his mouth was twisted into a smug, daring look. Daring her to ask him how she had known her thoughts. Devon dismissed it, most likely some sort of magic trick or percentage…eight-five percent of all people leaning on walls are thinking about what their mission is. She gave him a sideways glance again, she would admit, he had been clever to know. “That, little boy,” she said condescendingly, “is none of your business.” Anger flared up in those eyes, but it was minimal, more akin to frustration. “well well...” He muttered, after she was gone, “you had your chance.” And he left. Devon heard what he said, and it troubled her slightly, but she brushed it aside. There was no need to coddle the vanity of a half grown whelp of a boy.
A bored genius with nothing to do is extremely dangerous. Damien was bored. The fact that he was bored caused great danger to many individuals. When Damien got bored, Damien got dangerous. During his last bought of boredom he had successfully robbed a fortune off a local bank, with that fortune, he had invented a small gun, only three and a half inches long that fit perfectly into the palm of his hand. It was no ordinary gun, it was perfectly silent, and was one of the most powerful guns in the world, he had used it to get revenge on several of his enemies. Damien was bored. No one would or could stand up to him, and it was tiring him. A girl on the other side of the alley opened a door that shouldn’t be there, hadn’t been there. The door didn’t have a handle. She stood there silently, Damien sidled up next to her, suddenly he knew what she was thinking, “she had a mission”he grinned cockily “and that is?” She turned her head and looked at him, uninterested, “That, little boy is none of your business.” Damien became angry, it had been a long time since anyone had dared to treat him condescendingly. That stupid girl would pay. She walked away purposefully. Damien snorted, “well well…you had your chance..Little girl.”

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Devon 2

Devon sprinted through the doorway, baffled by all she had learned. She had to see him again, she realized, she needed to learn more, most of all, she needed to find her brother. What was it he had called him? Damien. She chuckled, Damien meant devil, which was an apt comparison from what she remembered of him! The three siblings had rarely seen each other as children, but they knew that they were siblings; they had an intimate bond since infancy and would attempt to meet in places, just to see each other. Each one had their own, cell, so to speak; a white room lacking any objects of interest. Each day there were multiple tests run on them, sometimes quite painful, Devon could hear the screams of the other ‘experiments’ ring across the hall. But Devon and her siblings were hardier and more resistant to pain, it hurt them less. They were given no straight information, but because of their astute hearing and the ability to understand subtle clues, they knew the ins and outs of everything in Sector D. It hit Devon then, what they were to the scientists. She and her siblings had gone beyond being a mere experiment, they had become monsters.

Suddenly she stopped and surveyed the scene before her, it was a door; a wooden door without a knob. Her lens beeped and she saw that it was merely an illusion. There was a knob, it was just invisible to the naked eye. She clumsily turned the knob, if felt strange, to be invisible it was kept in a constant state of vibration. Devon gaped at the sight beyond the door. This was not her world, the streets were covered with people on odd objects with wheels, cars, she had never seen a car. She gasped and slammed the door and stood with her back to the door, panting. Slowly, she opened the door the barest of cracks, and this sight astounded her even more than the last, it was her world, just as normal as before. The roads were hard-packed earth and the decrepit buildings crowded against one-another. All the men were in the fields, the children were either working or were playing in the street, mothers stood in primeval kitchens stirring stew that wafted a hungry smell throughout the town. This was the face of the town. Just like the face of a clock, behind the ticking monotone object, was a veritable maze of cogs and other interlinking objects, take one away, and the whole would cease to exist. Devon shut the door and looked to the left and the right, a little ruddy-faced boy with shaggy hair gaped at her. She felt for the handle again, looking behind her, but there was no door now, not even a knob. The door was gone. Devon stared at it curiously for a second, then shrugged and stepped briskly through a narrow alley. She had always been a creature of purpose, and had always made sure she knew what her mission was. Devon had her mission now.

Friday, August 5, 2011


Devon sat slouched in the chair, coarse looking ropes binding her forcefully to it, if however she were to move or strain against them in any way; she knew that those ropes, which looked so ordinary, would shock her with an electric charge that would leave her numb and dizzy from pain. The darkness and deep shadows were a comfort to her, she had lived her entire life in the cramped alleyways of the medieval era town, it was a strange mix of times and cultures her world was. The Aristocrats owned everything, ruled everything, and dictated everything. Devon was part of the lowest class, the Scum. In some ways she was glad of her position she was better able to see the world as it actually was, some of the lower class truly thought they were in the medieval times; they had no knowledge of technology, or the Aristocrats. At the thought of the word, Devon shuddered. The door opened and a short balding man with sickly pale skin walked in, ignoring her and deftly using his tablet which was a wafer thin translucent rectangle of smooth stone-like and touch sensitive material. Immediately the slight vibrating sensation of the ropes vanished. They were off. Devon spurred into action, she swiftly and gingerly typed in the code onto her palm with the fingers on that hand. The gloves she was wearing covered her palm and the upside of her hands stiffly, if she needed to use her fingers beneath them, no-one could tell; so far so good. Her left contact lens turned on, and began analyzing the ropes that bound her to the chair. She received blueprint images that highlighted the areas that could be cut through without danger. Everything was ready. The sickly man looked up, revealing sharp, intelligent black eyes. “Well then, Devon, we finally found you.” He said absentmindedly. Devon remained immobile, staring dully at the floor, her every muscle tensed for the move she would soon make. The man’s monotone voice broke her train of thought, “We have looked long and hard for you, you’re a legend amongst the Scum.” He spit the word out like garbage. “In fact, so much like a legend, that we doubted your existence, until we looked at our files.” Where had she seen him before? “And remembered the eight year old girl that made underground history. You have many aliases… but one thing gave you away as who you are.” Devon’s eyes slowly moved up, meeting his, “And that is?” She said softly, her voice barely louder than the whisper of the wind over grass, but somehow stronger and more threatening than the most ominous thunder. The man shivered, suddenly cold, then he chuckled, “All your aliases start with the letter D. Dallas, Dacey, Dana, Darien, Deka.” She blinked slowly, giving him no satisfactory response, he continued. “and that was because you came from sector D. Where all the experiments are made…but you rose above that, didn’t you, D11-3…” His voice was now the softest whisper. Rage rose up in her throat. How dare he meddle with her emotions! She turned on her technology, a red light appeared over the door, warning him to run, he turned to flee, but it was too late, a razor sharp blade had already sliced through the rope and she was already up had vaulted past him and through the door he had opened in his haste to get out. He started to shout, palming his tablet hastily, but Devon already had used her tazer, he was out cold. She had bought it in the black market; such things were dangerous and rare, but clumsy nonetheless. Devon had fine-tuned the weapon so that the object of prey was simply knocked unconscious. No-one else had such an effective and quiet weapon; the odd little man would be unconscious for at least three days. The room flashed red briefly, she crouched down like a cat, her contact lens had located a camera, it zoomed toward the location and she quickly broke it by deftly reaching up and snapping a few wires. Her lens affirmed that she couldn’t be seen. She climbed up skillfully a supporting Grecian pillar like a cat and laid herself flat out on the ceiling, her gloves and boots stuck to it firmly enough to keep her from falling, but loose enough for her to still detach herself. Four guards rushed into the room, glanced hurriedly around, and took of, each taking one of the four passageways. Her contact turned blue briefly, flashing a map of the underground maze. She took a second to memorize it, and then palmed a brick between two doorways. A door, previously invisible, briefly outlined itself and then clicked out from the wall. Devon silently entered shut it behind her. They had changed the maze from when she had first survived it, at eight years old she had used her own intuition to get through it to her goal. Now, at seventeen, with the highest level technology in the world, easily ten times smarter and more observant than her genius eight year old self, was scared. She shook her head and drove such thoughts from her mind, scanning the passage with her lens. To her surprise; there was no tech in this portion of the passageway. Alarm bells were rang in her head, her instinct said no, this portion had some sort of unexpected trap. She reached down and felt the floor. Wood. The walls? Wood. The ceiling? Wood. More specifically, dry old wood. Immediately she stood up and scanned the room, this time with a higher sensitivity, seeking for gas or fire. There was both, in ten seconds, the hall would lock and go up in flames. Devon immediately sprinted forward, panic welling up in her chest she shook her head and pushed it down. Suddenly a wall of electric charge showed up in her lens, not visible to the naked eye, but visible to her. She turned around to face another wall, this one of hungrily licking flames. A round hole appeared in the floor, light pouring through. Without a choice, Devon slipped quietly through into what she knew would be her capture and very likely, death.
The room was white and spotless; pieces of paper covered the walls, they were stacked on white desks, tables and chairs. A queer large man sat behind huge horn-rimmed glasses on a plush swivel chair. When she entered through the ceiling he turned around slowly, “ahh…nice of you to er, drop in.” Devon frowned, what was this clown doing down here? He continued speaking lethargically, “uhh…D11-3 was it? Hm...I...never thought they should merely call you by a...Number...” Devon gaped, “you’re the creator?” “Hm? Yes.” He chuckled “Indeed I am.” She walked firmly over the seamless white floor. “Where are they?” She said through clenched teeth, tears peering through her black eyes. The man shuffled his feet, “Ahh…” Devon put her hands around his neck, slowly squeezing. “Tell me where they are. My sister and my brother.” He cringed, “Ah. My works of art, my soul. They were killed, you know that.” Devon sighed, loosening her grip, “No..they weren’t.” He chuckled suddenly, “clever, that you are. I think, possibly, that your brother escaped; but my dear, I really don’t know.” She let go of him and slumped hopelessly to the floor, staying there for a number of minutes, finally she spoke. “Tell me, who am I?” The creator looked at her keenly, “You are my creation, but more than that, you were a child. Ah…I have longed to look upon my handiwork so many times, and now here you are, more brilliant than I had ever imagined.” He sat back into his chair, “Your mother was a brilliant woman, keen and clever, witty and fun-loving, a Royal. Despite all her good qualities, she didn’t want the triplets she had been given, and so, through a long and laborious process that I cannot and will not explain, I saved you three, no bigger than freckles, and kept you in an imitation womb. I wanted you, who I considered to be my children, to have the most wonderful life I could give to you. I wanted you to be healthy and strong, long of limb and fair of face, strong of arm and keen of mind, geniuses. So I froze you in that stage of development for fifteen years, researching and learning how to give you these things I longed for you to have. My quest to genetically alter three small embryos was found out, and the Aristocrats desired to have eleven bodyguards, who were athletic and loyal. They gave me eight more embryos, and those eight, I tailored to fit their needs.” He paused, looking at her sadly, “But I could not give you three that kind of life. So I decided to give you the skills you would need to get out of this, this, prison. I gave you unreal flexibility, strength that was beyond human ability, but beyond that, your mind, it was a thing of beauty…” His voice faded away and he sat as if in a trance, staring blankly at the wall. Devon coughed slightly and he started talking again, “I loved you. You three never saw me, but I saw your every move and delighted at it, and when I heard that they had decided to kill you, seeing how brilliant you had become, I went days without sleep, wondering if all my effort to save you three would be wasted.” His eyes focused on her, “you were always the most intuitive of the three, Damien was reckless, because of his strength and skill his recklessness was often a good strategy and worked, your sister, Dulce, she was thoughtful, she would’ve made the best tactition in the world when she grew up, but…” A tear trickled out of his eye, “I watched her die myself. It was cruelty!” He said, banging his fist on the table, sending light papers flying into the air, “To lead an innocent child, but a babe into a room and just…electrocute her…as if she were an animal!” Devon closed her eyes and shuddered. “But your brother, no, I didn’t not see him killed, and he was one to act, which gives me hope. Unless…unless he died in the tunnels.” The old man coughed nervously and stood up, “but you, Devon, you were my work of art, the perfect mix of caution and recklessness…but we can talk about that later.” He tapped a small button on his jacket, which was white, and a door opened. “Go through that, don’t fear, just go!!”