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Author Topic: Ramblings and Shorts~  (Read 642 times)

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Offline SkuleTopic starter

Ramblings and Shorts~
« on: August 28, 2012, 03:11:08 AM »
This is a compilation of very short stories... some rather old and others a little new. If you peruse through here, you're welcome to read them but they get a bit wordy.

~ Rise of the Pirate Whelp

The wind rustled his soft hair as Haruka sat and swung his legs on a tree branch high in the boughs of a large conifer tree. His baggy pants caught the breeze and billowed out slowly in the cool wind. It felt nice up here, all alone in his favorite conifer tree, just remembering things.

Mostly people let him be, not wanting to see him because they would remember his parents and siblings. Haruka had been the youngest, a little kid compared to his adult brothers and sisters. Yet he was the only one to survive, sometimes he wanted to bring back his family and his pirate of a father just to rub that in their faces. That he has survived, their weak hearted artist of a son. He had survived when they had perished.

"Haruka! Haruka, where are you? You have to see this!" a yell came up at him.

The eight year old glanced out of the corner of his eye at the caller, his five year old cousin Arina.


"What is it Arina? What do mom and dad need now?" Haruka snapped down at her, she could hear him, even if he was way up there she could always hear him.

The little girl bopped up to the tree and put her hands flat against it and smacked. She wanted him down and she was willing to throw a temper tantrum to get him down. Just what he needed then.

"No! It's not them! There's a pirate ship near the beach! You have to come see!" Her little voice rang up to Haruka and his heart nearly stopped from excitement.

A pirate ship, maybe the one his father was on? No, probably not, but it was hope.

Bark scrapped against his boots as he spun, grabbing the tree bough and putting his feet against the bark before sliding down to the ground. As his boots hit the perma-frost on the ground of the mountain with a light crunch and he turned to face Arina with a bright smile. She was so small compared to him, but her eyes reflected his feelings, the large orbs were wide and glistening as she smiled up at him.

"Well? Where is it?" Haruka asked.

Arina's whole body pricked up and she grabbed his hand, This way! Follow me!?

The little girl was so excited that she got to lead the way that she was almost skipping the entire way down the steep mountain. A grin managed to light up Haruka's face in honor of his cousin's foolish and tramping gait. She was almost too happy and her feet started to run faster as she got to the foot of the larger mountain.

The mountain they were on was one of the bordering mountains that kept the island safe from pirates and tidal waves and the occasional hurricane. This meant that as the two of them reached the ground and started to run across the flatter part of the island, they were really on sand and not dirt. The beach strip was so huge that they had to run for at least five minutes to get to the water and then if you wanted to get to the other side of the island it would take you a few hours.

A bird flew near Haruka's head with a loud call as it's wings folded and it landed square in the center of his silver haired head. It was a swallow, they always seemed to swarm around him. It had amused his family to no end while he was a very tiny child playing outside. The swallows would fly around his head and he would try to chase them as they flew in dizzying spirals and beautiful arches above the earth. Their wings of black and blue and gold cut designs in the air as if they were the greatest carvers that ever lived.

And they probably were.

The one on the top of his head was his favorite. A younger swallow, he had named it Kazegin in honor of the sky that it swerved and designed. It was never that far from him unless Haruka told it go do something.

Suddenly gold and red swirled in the distance, they were closer to the water and the sunrise. On their right was the port town, home to all of the fishers and boatman that the island held, all pushed into one town because the rest of the island lived differently. Banished for difference, punished for believing something more than the land gave, sentenced for following the sun and moon over the broad water.

Letting go of Arina's hand, Haruka let his longer, stronger legs carry him over the sand towards the mast that rose through the morning sky. It was the largest of any he had ever seen, inspiring his inner artist, making his eyes widen in awe of the power that rode across the ocean waves.

"Wait for me! Haruka!?" Arani cried out behind him angrily.

The eight year old boy never stopped, his ears deaf to her cries, his eyes filled with the images of the ship that was becoming more and more clear in front of him. His mind full of images and pictures of his father on his boat, of the man he had always wished to be like with his foot on the side of the ship, his hat held on his head by one hand as the other hand rested on his hip next to a spy glass. It was too much, Haruka had to know what it was like, had to feel the ocean wind whip through his hair over the broad sea.

Bolting past the first set of houses in the small town and down the small one cart street, Haruka could see his life changing with each step he made. The life he had before was about to change, whether he left on this ship or not. Kazegin suddenly took flight and soared above the rooftops with a loud singing call.

There it was, he was at the end of the town, next the docks and there it was. A large golden ship, weathered to the dull golden color by years on the ocean and countless storms battering at the once dark brown wood. A black flag flew above it proudly, bearing the pirate insignia that had frightened so many over the long years of pirates ruling the wide seas.

"Haruka! What do you think you're doing!? Get away from there!" an adult yelled in his direction.

A hand grabbed his shoulder and flipped him around to face the owner, an owner that he had seen quite a few times in the past. It was his other uncle, Bastion, the old hermit of a man that had become a fisher just to get away from the family he said was ruining his life. Why was he stopping him? Why now? Did he even care about Haruka? Or was it a personal agenda?

"Let me go." Haruka said in an even voice, his dark eyes glaring at the man.

Paling, Bastion released his nephew and Haruka turned his back on the man, his hair ruffling softly in the air as Kazegin flew down and landed on it again, placing it's wings on the sides of his head. It almost looked like the eight year old had a hat on his head.

The water lapped against the docks with loud slaps, rocking the large ship that sat further out in the waves. A small rowing boat of pirates was coming up to the docks just as Haruka turned around. The captain was sitting in the front of the boat, his arms crossed and his large hat pulled down over his eyes, showing only the bottom part of his face and a desperate need to shave the five o'clock shadow off.

A loud thump sounded as both the captain and a few of the other pirates lept onto the docks. They were imposing, that much was true. It was hard for him to look at them without thinking about massive amounts of experience and cunning. Swords and knives and guns bristled all over them as they walked down the broad docks. The way that they walked showed their power and pride. Their confidence.

Haruka wanted that.

Running forward his feet hit the ground and he propelled himself forward with a burst of speed that was unlike him. Kazegin took off again from the shock of wind hitting him so fast and him not moving at all. Its wings took off and nearly clipped the captain in the face as Haruka stopped in front of him, looking up at the imposing pirate with steeled eyes. His hands rested on his hips lightly as he glared back up at the large captain with no remorse in his eyes for what Kazegin had done or for making the entire boat's crew stop for him.

Looking down over his nose at the small silver haired whelp in front of him, the captain spit over to the side and crossed his arms.

"And what do you think you're doing sea whelp? Keep standing there and I'll clip the wings off of that bird for you." The captain growled out.

Haruka raised a small nearly invisible eyebrow at him, "I'm doing whatever I feel like. You can clip Kazegin's wings if you can catch him." A smug grin crossed the boys face. They would never catch that swallow.

"You have a lot of confidence for a whelp. Exactly what I'm lookin? for in meh sailors." The captain told him, then he turned his attention out over the crowd that had gathered. "Anyone care to stand up and be part of a first rate pirate ship?"

It felt as if he had been shoved in the dirt and stomped on. Haruka knew that he had just been brushed aside. Who would hire a kid after all? It just didn't happen, but Haruka was determined. He wanted on that ship.

"Take me! I'll work my hardest, you'll see!" Haruka said out loud.

The captain looked down at him again. "Have a death wish youngster? Come back to me when you've broken all of those milk teeth out of your skull."

"No! I can earn my keep! You'll see. I can climb the best, I can see across the mountains for miles that's how good my eyes are, and I can fight too. Take me with you."

One of the pirates standing behind the captain rolled his eyes and leaned up and whispered something in the captain's ear. The first mate then. They were the only ones that talked to the captains like that.

"Okay whelp. Lets test that mettle you have then shall we?" Without another word the captain took a dagger from his bristling belt and chucked it at the top of a rather large dock pole. It landed in the top and stuck out like a single thorn on an otherwise bare rose.

Haruka raised his eyebrows and turned to face it. The pole was bare of anything that would help him to get up. No rods or nails or anything. He glanced over his shoulder at the older captain. A greasy smile split his face in half and it became obvious to Haruka that he really did have to get that, but the pirate captain thought so little of him that he figured the eight year old wouldn't succeed.


The boy ran at the pole and looked around him as he did so. His sharp eyes caught on a sail that was on it's side. The way it had landed when it fell or was put down, it was partly on the boat and partly on the dock. So if he hit it at just the right angle....

Leaping Haruka landed square in the center of it and spun up so that his feet were above him, grabbing the dagger and landing on the other side of the pole smoothly. He had done things like this before. The captain was the real idiot here for thinking so little of him and underestimating his opponent. As the eight year old walked forward he saw the captains jaw drop, he hadn't expected this. None of the pirates had. Yet everyone else in the town had known.

Handing the stained and ridged dagger to the captain, the man ripped it out of Haruka's hand.

"So you wanna be a pirate, do ya boy?"

"Isn't that obvious?"

A wicked smile lit the captains face and he grinned evilly down at Haruka slowly. 

Offline SkuleTopic starter

Re: Ramblings and Shorts~
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2012, 03:14:22 AM »
~ The Bleak Day

Blinking his red eyes sullenly, Haruka flexed his knuckles and sat up from where he was curled up on the grave. Flexing his arm slightly he stretched completely and used his knees to heft himself the rest of the way to his feet. The pre-teen had gotten used to sleeping on this same grave stone over the past year, though Roberta Kingston didn’t seem to mind so much as she’d been dead for over twenty years. He figured it was probably the most amusement she’d gotten in a long time.

A chirp to his right brought Haruka back to himself, making him glance over in the direction of the little brown swallow that had made the noise. Kazegin didn’t really seem to mind all that much that he’d snapped Haruka from his thoughts, just that he wanted to go somewhere.

Thinking of it, Haruka wanted to go somewhere too, so he brushed off his tank top and shorts briefly before striding off, keeping his head still enough to let Kazegin land on it. Even though he lived and slept in a Graveyard didn’t mean that he liked to spend all of his time in it, rather he liked to go other places and sleep.

In fact, sleeping took up quite a bit of his time. Had anyone been wise enough to explain to him that it was simply because he was going through a growth spirt then Haruka wouldn’t have worried about it so much. As it was he kept track of how much he slept by marking his stomach in places to let himself know how long he’d slept that day. It had gotten to the point where he slept about fifteen hours out of the twenty four hour day.

“Get outta the way kid!” came a sharp yell to his right, causing Haruka to launch himself nearly up into a tree, he got so far as to get one hand on the bark when the person slid under him in the cart. His sneakers touched dirt after the cart had passed and the pre-teen blinked in slight shock. He hadn’t even realized that he was on a road.

“Some people just move too fast in life.” Haruka muttered under his breath as he ruffled his hair faintly and kept walking. This was looking like it would be a strange day already.

Of course it didn’t get any better when he walked out of the woods and into the open air, letting his eyelids droop down to half cover his eyes. It was overcast as hell out and of course it had to be a dreary start to a dreary day. Chirping once more, Kazegin nestled down into his hair and must have fallen asleep, because Haruka didn’t feel him move any longer.

When his feet touched sand he gazed out over the roaring sea, the waves crashing heavily against the coast in an act of what seemed like defiance against the land for breaking its surface. Of course it was bleak out, of course it was overcast and of course the day just had to start out badly. Haruka couldn’t think of a more annoying day that he’d been alive, aside from possibly the day his family had died.

Some part of him missed being in the town again, with all those kids that he’d met and Eliza. She was his best friend after all, in some way he was attached to her more than he was attached to anyone else in his life aside from possibly Kazegin. That was most likely why he was sitting there mulling over their friendship in his head…. or, at least standing.

Huffing, he kicked sand into the ocean and sat down just out of reach of the crashing surf, crossing his legs and sitting with his wrists on his knees tiredly. He figured that he’d buy Eliza a set of knives from the next big purse he snatched from someone. She’d bought him one of the coolest staffs he’d ever laid eyes on and it saved him from patching and re-patching his own staff that had been dying for the longest time.

Scrubbing the heel of his hand against the green tattoo on his right cheek, Haruka gazed out over the roiling sea and stopped thinking about Eliza for a moment, letting his thoughts wash to what he imagined would be out there, out there past those waves and those cold reefs. Were there other islands where a boy his age was sitting on the beach thinking the same thing?

If there was, Haruka wanted to meet that boy, wanted to shake his hand and say thank you, for not being the only one. Dropping his chin to his knees, Haruka closed his eyes and let his thoughts wander to that pirate he’d met a year ago, why hadn’t he been able to go? Why hadn’t he been allowed to become part of that crew?

Well he’d make his own, make his own way in the world and be able to do his own thing. A pirate for sure, as he didn’t know what else he was cut out for. His mother had once told him that he was really smart for his age and the pre-teen still wondered where she’d seen it in him, he couldn’t see it at all.

“Mom…” Haruka whispered, letting a tear run down the center of his green tattoo to drip down his chin to the cool sand beneath him. It only took a few minutes to disappear into the sand the same way his mother had disappeared in the flames.

Offline SkuleTopic starter

Re: Ramblings and Shorts~
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2012, 03:16:48 AM »
~ A Pirate

A rough set of shoulders jammed into Haruka’s, throwing him off balance just as fast as his fingers relieved his offender of their purse. It wasn’t that heavy of a purse, belaying the times that were coming upon all of them recently. Haruka wasn’t sure what it was he could get with this much copper, but he knew that at least he could get some sort of meal with it.

Grinning playfully, he trotted off down an ally and away from the main road so he could count through it and figure out exactly how much he had. From what it felt like there was at least enough to buy a couple of sandwiches and possibly something for Eliza if he saved half of it.

Chirping far above him, Kazegin sailed over his head brightly, clipping him with one of his large brown wings. Laughing deeply as his bird sailed off towards the market street, Haruka put his feet to the dirt and ran after him. Kazegin was always good for leading him to what he needed or leading others to what Haruka wanted for them. It was a good relationship the two of them had for the past year or so.

It was also one that Haruka knew would probably end soon enough, Kazegin wasn’t exactly immortal. The little swallow wouldn’t live as long as he would and Haruka at least figured that even though he’d go for a little while saddened by losing him, that he would get another bird in his place. Mostly because the little bird always seemed to want the best for him and odds on he wouldn’t let Haruka alone without some help from the sky.

Though what he would get in the future didn’t bother him right now, for this moment the sun was out, he had a full change purse, and a best friend up in the sky that was taking him to find lunch. The world didn’t much matter to Haruka all that much, he lived for the moment, lived for the thrill of being somewhere at an exact time.

Bursting out into the market street with a bright smile on his face, Haruka looked up and saw Kazegin sitting on a large pole above the docks where the pirates hung out. A flinch threatened to take over Haruka’s reactions and he staunched it down inside of him. The boy still remembered when he was eight years old and saw that pirate that had refused to take him with his ship. Blinking tiredly, Haruka frowned faintly and walked over to the pole, recognizing the pole as the one the knife had been thrown into and he scowled completely.

“What’re we here for Kaze?” Haruka growled up at his swallow under his breath, only receiving a cheep in return before he shot off into the distant clouds. “Well thanks so much for that answer.”

Running his hand over the wood of the pole the teenager let a sigh escape from his mouth and he walked down the dock to the end where the sea began and his world ended. These docks were the longest and largest docks on the whole of Illusion Island. This was the end of Haruka’s world, Kazegin could fly out over the water and see different sights, but he was trapped on this island in a world that possessed blinders that fell over all of its citizens.

He wanted off of this island. He wanted free, he wanted to see things that he would never see while on this island he’d been forced to call home. Ever since that ship had come and gone Haruka had wanted to find his own home, wanted to leave Illusion Island and go out sailing.

A pirate. He wanted to be a pirate.

Smiling, Haruka turned and ran down the docks towards Market Street again, ready to go and buy himself a sandwich and Eliza her daggers. 

Offline SkuleTopic starter

Re: Ramblings and Shorts~
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2012, 03:19:17 AM »
~ The Scar

It can be said, that the greatest battle in the life of any being; be they men, mer-men or simply call themselves by the name’ pirate’; is that first step into an understanding that what they want in life is rarely within arm’s reach.

Those that sail under the black flag of death, however, have been deceived by the lore and the fame, the glint of gold that can ally in the future and bring with it the promise of their eternal dream. However, many that sail under that same flag have reason to find it in the least of all taste and hope. For they are the ones who’s iron will marches the world into an ange of death and gold.

This was the world of the strong, where one small orphan, hazed by his village and battered by those he called family, made his way in an icy world built on hate and oppression. This was his world though, and the boy didn’t know how to rid himself of it.

Save for one way.

A flag soared through the air as he ran, violet hair gusting out behind him. A squawk from above let any passerby know that the boy was watched from above in his endeavors. Swallows, the birds of the boy’s choice, though this one had been with him for years now. Kazegin, the warrior of the wind that served his master well.

The prevailing northern winds attempted to rip the already tattered flag from the hands of the pre-teen who carried it, tossing it about as in warning. Yet the boy kept moving, kept running through the lands of the small island as if they were his and his alone, waving above his head… a pirate flag.

It was part of the remnants of a ship that had washed ashore, or at least pieces of it. Haruka had simply been lazing about the beach during that time, looking for the best thing to do with his day. The answer to that question was almost always ‘nothing’, but that didn’t stop him from trying and looking when he was bored and had nothing to do.

When a wooden plank knocked against his sneakers, Haruka’s eyes immediately followed the inanimate thing’s path to what looked to be wreckage of an incredible kind. Something must have happened to the boat to have made it look so ragged, but since his feet had yet to leave the safety of the ground, Haruka could only begin to guess. However what he did know, was that it was there in the first place, so an adventure was due.

Pulling his sneakers from his feet, the pre-teen strode into the water like there was nothing in there at all. The shells of oysters and other things prodded at his calloused feet as he walked, bringing pain in the cool water but no blood. Feet so calloused by life didn’t get cuts, rather they just kept on.

Reaching the waist deep water in moments, Haruka plunged beneath the cool waters and opened his blood colored eyes. There was no gold beneath these waves, but what he did see was the cruelest form of a death that one could witness out beyond his reach. Upon seeing such a sight, he pulled his head up from the water and sighed.

Of course he had always known that there was only one way for a pirate to go, but he hadn’t imagined this could be an outcome as well. It seemed cruel, but it helped to prove to him a few things as he watched the tattered flag float in his direction.

That was why the flag was with him, rather than letting another on his small-minded isle find it. He wanted to be a pirate, and as such he didn’t see it at all fitting to let a pirate ship and the remains of it’s once loyal crew be demeaned and desecrated for their choice of life. Be they human, be they mer-folk, or be they pirates, they were all once people and every person deserved respect in death.

“Afternoon Miss Roberta, don’t mind me, I just need to use this head stone of yours for a bit.” Haruka said in a simple voice, smiling at the grave of Roberta Kingston, who had been dead for twenty odd years.

The boy slept on top of her grave every night, though others would call it insult, Haruka figured that Roberta was more amused than she had been in decades. After all it wasn’t every day that a young boy made a home out of a graveyard.

Hanging the flag over the top of the headstone, Haruka managed to get a good look at it. The fabric was black, but it was so worn down from most likely years of flight that it was nigh-on see through. The edges were tattered and a fair few scorch marks marred the surface and color in places. As it dried, he could feel years of salt hardening it, a hint to why it was so tattered, the wind had forced it to bend to it’s will.

But despite all that, or maybe because of it, it was a pirate flag. A real one, right here in front of him.

“Never thought I’d live long enough to even see one.” Haruka mused to himself.

“HEY!” the bellow caught Haruka’s ears and caused him to spin, spotting the butcher from town.

“Shit.” Haruka said aloud as the butcher came towards him with an uplifted shovel.

“I told you before not to sleep around here you little rat! And now look! You brought a pirate flag into our town on top of desecrating graves!” the shovel swung through the air and Haruka had just enough time to duck before it flew over his head.

What the butcher was doing out in the graveyard with a shovel was beyond him, but Haruka knew it was time to jet. Grabbing the flag and ducking another swing, Haruka started to run but was stopped.

The old butcher had grabbed his flag and didn’t seem in any hurry to let go despite Haruka’s hurried look. If it was one thing about butchers, it was that they had remarkably strong arms and equally as strong of grip and swings. So when he felt himself get tugged forward and saw the shovel fly through the air at him once more he attempted to turn his face away and failed.

Pain lanced through the right side of his face as the blade of the shovel connected. Blood splattered across the air and dotted the morose ground like a vibrant rain drop from above. Both of his knees buckled and he toppled over helplessly, fallen victim once more to the cruelty and belligerent idiocy of his own village.

Black scraps fell before his eye when he cracked it to see what was happening and why he wasn’t dead yet. It was the scraps of the pirate flag, cut into threes and dropped to the ground like it meant nothing. Haruka felt the butcher’s glare for a long moment before the man stalked off huffily.

What had he done to deserve this?

The saddest part of it all was that Haruka didn’t even know. He just knew that it was the way it was. No other reason really.

Reaching out with his left hand while he used his right to keep pressure against his now useless eye, Haruka gripped it tight and felt tears slide down his left cheek while hot blood slid down the other. They were trying to break him, but Haruka knew that they wouldn’t succeed. Now more than ever he knew this wasn’t his fault and that it was time to do something about it.

Now however, wasn’t that time. He reached for the last of the three scraps and felt his vision go blurry as his hand fell short. He missed grabbing it by an inch or so, the one thing he wanted in life, an arm’s length away as always. Haruka’s eye closed and his body slumped, hand sliding from his face to show a deep scar that ran from his outer eyebrow to the inner corner of his right eye and across the bridge of his nose. There was no hope for his eye, he was blind it in now for sure.

Hours later he would awaken in an inn to a haggard face, a bandage over his eye and the scraps of the pirate flag resting on his chest.

It was what he would choose to do with that moment for the rest of his life that would make him the pirate that would one day be respected for his heart and honor.

Offline SkuleTopic starter

Re: Ramblings and Shorts~
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2012, 03:21:27 AM »
~ The Story of the Lonely God

The story of the Lonely God

The day was bright when the eyes of a small girl cracked open to look up at the cloudless blue sky above her. Confused, she peered around her to find where her family had gone, but to her demise all around her was naught but brilliant gold sand. Dark brown eyes widened in shock and surprise, but there was nothing she could do to change what had already happened.
   In her distraught-ness, the little girl didn’t notice that the sands beside her had begun to swirl with an iridescent glow that would have made even the least attentive person stop in their bumbling tracks. Covering her face, the girl began to sob her loneliness and pain to the world around her, still unsure of how she’d come to be in this situation. The sun baked her pale skin deeply as she sat there, burning her as deeply as the loneliness in her heart. Just when the girl felt that she couldn’t handle the pain of the loneliness and loss any longer, a large shadow spread over her body, shading her from the scorching sun above.
   “Wha… what?” The girl squeaked in shock, lifting her deep brown eyes.
   Over her stood a large white lion with the most spectacular wings that the girl had ever seen, even paling the wings of the doves that she’d been used to see flying around her when she was younger. His eyes were shockingly blue, as if a piece of the sky had been broken and shined into a pair of irises for just him. His mane and tail were dark red, like blood flowing through all things. In all her life, the small girl had never seen a more impressive sight than the lion she had seen that day.
   “Something as small as you shouldn’t be crying in the center of a desert all by your lonesome, how did you come out here little one?” the large white winged lion asked her in a gentle voice.
   “But I… how can I not cry? I’m all alone here.” The girl told the large talking lion, her eyes widening at his voice, not from the fact that his voice was gentle, but because he talked at all. “I can’t remember what I’m doing here and I don’t know where my home is anymore because I don’t remember how I got here.”
   Seeing that her eyes were threatening to overflow, the lion leaned his head down and licked her cheek. His sandpapery tongue cleaned the dirt from her face, leaving a long white streak where the sand had once left a dark brown tint. Taking a few steps forward, the white winged lion stretched out his wings and looked around him. His eyebrows pulled together and he delicately raised one before looking back at her with those same blue eyes she’d seen the first time. His wings ruffled and he nodded slowly.
   “What’s your name?” he asked in his deep voice, a voice that for some reason resonated in the most incredible way she’d ever known.
   “I’m... Cleo.” The girl said meekly to the large talking lion.
   “Aah, a pretty name for one so mysterious. I should give myself a name sometime in the future as well, shouldn’t I?” the lion laughed and shook his head before looking up at the cloudless sky. “Well now, let’s get a look at what we have around here. Shall we?” The lion leaned down towards her and lifted his wing out of the way so that she could crawl up onto his back.
   Leaning her head to the side, Cleo stared at the white lion in confusion. Were they going for a ride or something? Her small hand reached out slowly and rested on the edge of his broad wing. Innocent eyes peered up at him as the girl questioned the large lion wordlessly if she really could crawl onto his back like this. A simple nod reassured her and she crawled the rest of the way onto the large lions back.
   In the next instant they were airborne, flying on the thermals created by the burning sands and the whipping breeze. The large wings on either side of Cleo’s body flapped deeply in the wind, whipping the wind beneath them to keep the two aloft, though the small girl was sure that this lion would be able to fly much better without her added resistance. Yet still, the white lion flew on, his eyes cast downward as he scoured the sands in the hopes of finding something.
   “Are you… a god?” Cleo asked suddenly, completely out of the blue.
   The lion jerked in the air a little and tilted his head back to look into Cleo’s eyes once again. A feeling swamped over Cleo that she hadn’t noticed before, when she stared into the lion’s eyes she felt the most incredible sadness and loneliness she’d ever felt, despite the fact that this lion was going out of his way to save her and help her, she couldn’t help the feeling. Closing her eyes, the little girl focused her eyes on her hands, clenched in the thick white fur of his neck ruff.
   “A god? Well, I don’t know actually. I might be, I mean, I can sense something in me and I have these wings when others but for birds don’t. I very well could be.” A rich laugh smoothed over Cleo’s ears as the god kept beating his large white wings. “But what would I be the god of? After all, if I am a god you created me, it was your call that made me come to you.”
   This hadn’t dawned on Cleo before that if he was the god she thought he was then she must have created him with all of her lonely thoughts and saddened heart. Her eyes widened and she leaned forward to wrap her arms around the white lion’s neck, her own personal god that she’d created with her own mind. With every beat of his incredible wings, the god soared through the sky at a speed that she hadn’t noticed before, the wind whipping her hair around her head like a halo given to her personally. The two soared above the sandy ground below with the grace of a dove on the move.
   “The god of Loneliness, Athrun. That’s who you are.” Cleo nodded with tears in her eyes as the white lion’s head turned and his eyes looked back at her with a smile.
   “That’s who eh? Well, I’m glad I know that much now at the very least.” Athrun said to the girl in a fatherly-like voice that resonated with everything that he knew in the world.
   Slowly they began to circle higher and higher into the sky, the thermals carrying them up much higher than any living being that wasn’t a god had ever been. The sun wasn’t as harsh up here, though that didn’t make as much sense seeing as how they were quite so high. With a few more flaps Athrun carried them even higher than they had been before, uncovering the entire land for many miles around them.
   But there was no city, no village, nothing that resembled a large human civilization at all. The only thing that the two could see was a small human camp that was situated a few miles from where they floated in the air. Athrun’s ears pricked forward when he saw this and he glanced back at Cleo with a hopeful grin, only to have it downcast when she shook her head and sighed sadly. The god quirked his muzzle lightly and huffed into the wind as he floated on the air, fluttering the tips of his wings lightly before pivoting in the air and flying down at an angle towards the small camp below.
   “Where are we going?” Cleo yelled up towards Athrun’s ears, hoping that the wind wouldn’t blow her words away.
   “Down towards that camp, maybe they’ll know who you are, or at the very least know a place nearby that could know you. Where we are now, I could fly for hours in the hopes of finding someplace where other humans like you live and even if we found it that might not by the right place. This’ll give us an idea at least of what we’re looking for or where we should even go.” Athrun answered immediately. His response was a little curt, making Cleo wonder what was going through his mind at that moment, because she couldn’t see his beautiful eyes while he was flying.
   So instead of fighting against him to keep from flying down there, Cleo just let the god do his thing. What he had said did make sense, there was a chance that one of these people would know, but what if she couldn’t understand them? This thought almost made the sunburned girl thwack herself in the head with the heel of her palm; she was riding on the back of a god and here she was wondering what would happen. A laugh was prompted from her and Athrun swiveled his head back to look at her for a moment before chuckling deep down in his throat that vibrated in Cleo’s arms.
   A few moments later the god’s paws landed on the soft sand with a gentle thud and the large white wings folded up on Athrun’s back delicately, the one bent slightly to let Cleo climb off of his back when she wanted to. As it was, they were about ten yards from the camp, but already someone had seen them and sounded the alarm for intruders, or at least what Cleo thought was an alarm. Clambering from Athrun’s back quickly, Cleo watched as people from the camp stared at them and talked amongst themselves, well they yelled but Cleo didn’t know anything about them so for all she knew the yelling was their form of talking.
   Beside her Athrun fluttered his wings harshly and looked at the humans with wary blue eyes, his ears thrown back and his head lowered slightly from where it had been held up high only moments beforehand. Instantly fear washed over Cleo and she watched Athrun carefully, none of his movements or expressions escaped him. What did escape her were the events that happened next, but before Cleo knew it she was ushered into the village.

   Many years passed, sand sifted and the dunes of old changed into valleys of deep cool air, the grass and trees grew and died leaving the landscape all around completely changed from what it had once been. But of course all of this could happen in the blink of an eye in the desert, but one eye had seen all of these years and changes with an icy keen eye, not entirely caring of what was happening. A white god sat up on a high mountain in the mountain range near what had now become Egypt. A collar rested right on his collar bone, an ankh on his hip that was melded from pure gold onto his skin and fur, forever staying in one place, the rest of him pure white as snow sitting as a cap on the top of the mountain.