- Posts: 178
- Joined: Sat May 16, 2009 4:00 pm
Vicala forced a sparkling torch into the thick darkness ahead. She muttered miserably under her breath as she stomped into a puddle, splashing herself with repugnant water, and accidentally setting a cluster of cobwebs aflame. It crackled merrily as it almost instantly evaporated in a quick puff. After aimlessly stumbling around the sewers for a good while, she spotted something in the distance and immediately froze in her step. A blurry shadow bolted across the passage, but it solidified as it drew closer to her, and soon she faced a mangy, malnourished figure. The man was draped in filthy rags and he gleefully showed a row of yellow teeth before promptly sitting down on the slick stone floor. There was an odd, scraping sound of metal, and she shot a look at the weapon still attached to his belt. The luxurious, enchanted blade from Luskan, his pride. Oddly enough it was still in almost pristine condition.
“Are you going to speak?” she asked and loosened a leather pouch from her belt. “Brought you dried fish and bread today. If you behave, you’ll get a sip of rum.”
The man stared blankly at her as he dug his fingers into the long, wild hair.
“But I can’t keep coming down here,” she continued as she fastened the torch in a nearby bracket on the wall. “I can’t keep coming to this stinking hellhole, looking for you. I need to know that my time is not wasted, that there is a glimmer of hope in the darkness.”
He appeared to have found something in his hair, and he put it in his mouth.
“You’re disgusting.” She heaved a sigh and opened the pouch filled with food, lifting out the loaf of bread. She looked him over as if appraising a horse ready to be purchased, and she tore a piece off and tossed it at him. “Have some proper food for once,” she said.
The man flinched as the bread hit his chest, but he made no attempt at catching it.
“I never expected to see you like this,” she continued while tilting her head. “I mean... I had my hopes, but I never dared dream, you know? There was a time when I would’ve paid a million gold coins for this. This is what you deserved. Drowned in the raging waves of your own madness.”
The man continued to stare straight ahead, at nothing in particular.
“But I didn’t know better,” she conceded with a roll of her shoulders. “I didn’t know, then, that you were the core in everything that I was. The core in everything that I ever did, and believed in. My hatred for you drove me, ignited me. Made me who I am. Made me love you.”
His face twitched oddly and then he spat at her feet. She instinctively cursed and puffed out her chest, stepping toward him, at which he rose from the floor, yelped and staggered backward. She lofted a brow at his reaction. He didn’t acknowledge her, or what had just happened, but continued to stare into the void.
“It was always you and me, against everyone else. We were supposed to ravage the seas and plunder the lands,” she said with a wistful tone. “With you, there was always an adventure on the horizon, and now... it’s just empty and bleak. I would have followed you anywhere, and you knew that.” She paused, searching for the words. “How could you do this to me? How could you leave me?”
For a moment it looked like his eyes flickered to her face, but she couldn’t be certain. Maybe the darkness played tricks on her mind. She hesitated slightly, but took his face in her hands, pulling him closer to force his eyes to lock with her own.
“How could you leave me?” she repeated angrily but pulled him closer yet, tenderly pressing her forehead against his. “How could you go where I cannot follow?”
He licked his lips, and then a gurgling sound emerged from his throat, and it turned into something that sounded like a hoarse giggle. She somberly lowered her gaze.
“You know that I don’t want to abandon you like this, but I can’t keep coming down here to torture myself with your ghost. I need to know that you’re still in there, somewhere.” She inhaled deeply as if preparing herself for facing something she would rather not. “Are you still here? Say something to let me know that you are not lost. That you know your way back to me.”
He giggled once more, his fingers nervously flitting around and intertwining.
“Please, Kalma, you must say something,” she pleaded impatiently. “You’re drifting away and I find myself giving up, so just say something!”
He leaned toward her, sniffing like an animal catching a scent in the wind, but still would not speak. She groaned in exasperation and let go of him, turning around. Two fingers rubbed the bridge of her nose while she closed her eyes.
“I’ll try again tomorrow,” she said finally, her head drooping in defeat.
- Posts: 178
- Joined: Sat May 16, 2009 4:00 pm
She sat on a damp crate with her back against the wall, staring at the mad captain rummaging through a pile of debris. When she had offered to help him look for whatever it was he was searching for, he had just snarled like a rabid dog, so she decided to simply sit back and wait. She idly tugged at her leather gloves, sighed, and tilted her head back to look into the ceiling.
“Do you know what I think about sometimes?” she asked suddenly, glancing at him clawing at the garbage. “I think about the fact that someone actually agreed to marry you once. It all strikes me as, well... nothing short of supernatural to be quite honest, and it’s something that has stuck with me. Do you remember your wedding day?”
He found something distinctly wet and pressed it against his nose to sniff it.
She arched a brow. “I sure do. It was in the Swordarm Inn, and the place was packed with people. The high captains were there, and pretty much every person you’ve ever met, heard of or read about. Everyone was invited, and it must’ve been such a treat to attend, I’m sure of that,” she said dryly. “Of course, I was not invited. Oh no, I was commanded to stand guard by the door, outside! Not a single person tried to break in or steal your sweetrolls or anything. Not a damn thing happened.”
His search continued, but she was certain that she heard a small grunt.
“I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised, though. You never missed an opportunity to brandish your bastardness.” She folded her hands in her lap. “I didn’t like your wife much, anyway. What was her name? Lilah? She was not right for you. Tamina was much better. A better match.”
Something was tossed over the edge and into the sewage, and there was a large splash as it hit the water.
She bit her lip. “I guess that speaking of failed attempts at romance won’t make a difference,” she stated after a moment of silence. “You never did love those women as you loved the Seawolf, after all.”
He briefly stopped moving, then turned around and stared at her.
“Remember the starry nights out at sea? Our breaths rising in the icy air?” she asked softly, as if to avoid startling a curious squirrel. “We had a good life out there, on the Seawolf. You and me, and all the others,” she started to count on her fingers, “Tamina, Red, Grim, Black, Caves, Lucky, Dovey, Bones, Raven, Duke, Vala and whoever else I forgot. Don’t you miss it? Don’t you miss them?”
There was something wild in his eyes, darting back and forth, and he appeared to be nervous as he started tugging at his grease-stained shirt.
“Look at yourself.” She lazily gestured toward him. “Is this who you want to be for the rest of your life? Don’t you miss being the infamous Captain Kalma Hellstorm?”
He started biting a fingernail, but she could swear that there was almost a dip of his head.
She smiled slightly. “Very well then. You will become him again, one way or another. And I will help you.”