Author: Aerdrienya
Story Index: Index

Kneeling down in the high grass Aerdri snapped a few stems of kingsblood away from the base plant and stuffed the bundle into her small waist pouch knowing full well that her carelessness would most certainly bring its value down to potential buyers.

But right now she didn't care.

The warm highland breeze that crept up behind her was comforting. Her short emerald hair tossed about carelessly, partially obscuring her vision of the rolling hills before her. She closed her eyes and tried to clear her mind of both the past and the future and took a deep breath. Her mind swam in the bouquet of fragrances of eternal spring. Sweet, musky, bitter, earthy smells. All of them good.

The new heat of the early morning sun swept over her. Even through closed lids she could still make out the rim of the golden globe that, each day, brought new life to the world. It hurt a little, but it was that good kind of hurt, one that might bother you after a long time but right now it just seemed... alluring.

Then... it all just seemed to... go away.

The brightness slowly faded and she felt a little dizzy. Putting one hand onto the ground to steady herself she brushed her hair from her face and opened her eyes. At least her mind told her they were open but everything was still dark and seemed to be getting darker.

She made a move to get up and immediately fell back to her knees. Felt herself beginning to tremble all over, started at her arms, her right arm, until soon her sense of direction was gone. The natural warmth of her skin grew suddenly cold or perhaps numb. Her chest however began to burn like the touch of a searing blade on new born flesh. The pain ripped into her mind in a fury. Then the colors returned. Unnatural orange, violets and greens. Coming at her. Swirling around and tearing through her, bringing with it a feeling that could best be described as contempt and shattered glass.

Far away, she could hear herself scream. See herself clawing at her face as if attempting to tear this seething malice from her mind, until her milky flesh was bloody and hanging in ribbons.

Then... it all just seemed to... go away.


Next: II. Paths

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