The Twins

Somewhere to post stories, journals, and other fiction based on No Rest for the Wicked.

The Twins

Postby CrewCat » Tue Dec 08, 2015 9:32 pm

His wife screamed in her bed.

He had been listening at the door for hours. Finally, after one final gut wrenching scream, there was silence. The brief pause was interrupted by the wailing of not one, but two newborn children. Girls, he was told, by one of the many bustling midwives. Identical, he was told by another.

In actual fact, when he saw them nestled next to his exhausted but happy and beautiful wife, he learned that they were not identical. They were mirror image – symmetrical, identical, twin girls.

They were named for their grandmothers. Asha, and Iskra.

From before the time they were able to walk, they were trouble. They could incite the worst of rages in their father, and were merciless when it came to their cousins and friends. Not one day of their childhood passed when one or both of them was not seen sprinting away from the scene of some mischief, with angry shouts following them.

As teenagehood rolled around, the twins became less troublesome in some ways, but more in others. They had no regard for anyone except each other, and cared very little for what anyone else wanted. Iskra followed Asha’s lead. Asha lead, knowing Iskra would follow without question. Ideas that Iskra had would spring, fully formed, into Asha’s head, in that strange way that twins have of being able to tell what the other was thinking with just a glance. There was some fear in the family that this would cause problems, and that the black ships would come and take them away, but the fear was unfounded. The twins were just one person, split into two bodies.

Unexpectedly, the girls actually proved competent and able during the military style training their father had them subjected to, and his hope that they might join him and their cousins in Arch-Militant Achen’s personal guard did not seem unfounded. Although for reasons known only to herself, Asha was having none of it. And where Asha went, Iskra followed. On the evening before their 18th birthday, they left Varyaga.

His wife wept in her bed.

He had been listening at the door for hours.

He could no longer comfort her. The twins had been the irritation, the joy, the joint love that he and his wife had shared.

They were gone, and it seemed that no one short of the Emperor knew where.
Last edited by CrewCat on Mon Jul 18, 2016 2:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Twins

Postby CrewCat » Wed Dec 09, 2015 8:59 pm

*OOC note*
I'm going to continue writing bits and pieces along these lines and just posting them as replies to this, to save spamming...
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The Navigator

Postby CrewCat » Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:06 pm

Issy tailed the pale navigator through the crowds surrounding the port of Stavanger. He seemed to know what he was doing. He had seemed that way for the past few days, as she had followed him.

Carefully avoiding anywhere she had been known as a child, Issy had been back on Varyaga for less than a month, when a chance wander through one of the higher class districts brought her upon a pale skinned navigator, in deep conversation with a blond haired nobleman. The sight made her pause, and she sidled closer. Apparently the navigator had just acquired a ship. Apparently the navigator was a noble from D’Emma, and was to be going back there soon, with the assistance of the blond varyagan. And apparently the navigator needed someone with the skills Issy had.

But Issy knew better than to work with, or for, the first navigator with a ship that needed her skills that happened along, even with her desire to get off her birth planet.

So Issy tailed the pale navigator. She found out that the ship was actually an ecclesiarch vessel, belonging to a cult called the Temple of the Unbroken Knot. No matter, she could pretend to care long enough to get off the planet. She found out that the navigators name was Emrys, with a long string of other names that she never got quite close enough to overhear. She found out that the ship was called the Hymn of Radiance.

She found out that she quite liked the strange little navigator, and decided that they should meet properly. So in a bar, in the port of Stavanger, Varyaga, Issy met Emrys, and joined the crew of the Hymn of Radiance, and The Temple of the Unbroken Knot.
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Re: The Twins

Postby CrewCat » Thu May 12, 2016 5:15 pm

The lander touched down in a small clearing near the now deserted Soloviev estate on Varyaga.

The woman who stepped out glanced back. “I’ll only be a few minutes”

She walked a little ways into the forest, until she found the ruins of the small summerhouse that she’d known as a child. She pulled a bundle from her pocket, knelt, and finished the destruction of the floor, pulling up the remaining floorboards. Her face remained impassive as she placed the bundle, wrapped in black velvet with a green ribbon tied round it, into the space she had cleared.

There is an emptiness inside. There is a space you once filled. There is nothing there but pain. How can an empty space hurt? I never knew anything could make me feel like this. I am half a person. Why are you gone?

The woman replaces the boards as well as she can. She stands. She adjusts her blue chiffon scarf.

I cannot even think your name. I will break.

She walks back to the lander. Her face has not changed.

“Let’s go.”

The lander takes off. The woman with the blue chiffon scarf does not watch the planet fall away behind them.
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Re: The Twins

Postby CrewCat » Fri Jun 10, 2016 7:34 pm

Her tearstained face was the last thing the piece of filth saw. Reflected back in his regimental shaving mirror, an angry ghost that appeared over his left shoulder at the same time he saw the red line appear across his throat.

"You fucking deserved this."

As he bled out into the basin, she vanished back into the shadows.

She could not stay vanished forever.

The execution was quick. She looked up for the last time, and saw her own image kicking and screaming and crying against the hold of the men who were preventing her from reaching the other half of her soul. And then nothing.

Her soul was torn in two.

Half a soul is no use to anyone.
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Re: The Twins

Postby CrewCat » Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:55 pm

At three, taking their first staggering steps, towards each other. The infectious, child-laughter as they both fell over with a bump, and crawled together.

They were eight, dancing in circles in a field of wildflowers, with wreaths of poppies in their hair. Laughing, and giddy with excitement. Chasing their youngest cousin until he fell into the stream. They pulled him out, still laughing, and rolled him in the grass to dry him off.

They were twelve. Nervous, in their new blue dresses, at the first party they’d been allowed to stay up late for. They played the piano, sang, and were petted by the guests. “So pretty!” And Asha rolled her eyes. “Smart, too!” she said. “And a good shot!” added Iskra. They scampered off, away from the eyes, and hid under the long table in the dining room, stealing leftover sweets from the place settings.

Fourteen, and fighting. Some days, Asha would win, and Iskra’s sword would spin out of her hand. Some days, it would be Iskra on top, with the knife at her sister’s throat. Most days, the groupings on the targets would be so similar that only they could tell who’s shots had hit where. Asha’s third always hit to the left. Iskra’s fifth always pulled a little high.

Sixteen. Asha stealing kisses from Gwin the groomsman in the summerhouse. Iskra blushing and looking away.

Seventeen, and sitting on the bed, braiding each other’s hair as they had every night since they had learned to braid. Asha, whispering of leaving. Iskra silent, not arguing, not agreeing. Curling up together in the darkness, with the moonlight coming through the curtains. Asha’s soft breathing. Iskra’s eyes still open, glimmering in the light from the window, full of thought.
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Re: The Twins

Postby CrewCat » Tue Oct 18, 2016 9:47 pm

Iskra is curled up in a ball on her bed, sobbing silently into the soft fur of her blanket.
The grief shakes her, as she cries for Emrys. For Hyacinthus, who hadn't spoken since he stepped off the lander. For Hodyr. For the Choirmaster. For the Raltus', who she didn't even know.
For the all the lives she couldn't save, because she wasn't there.
For all the lives she didn't save, even when she was there.
For the one life she saw ending every time she closed her eyes.

The tears stop.

She puts up her internal walls, and puts on her carefully constructed blank face. She will be wearing it a lot over the next few months.
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