Stygian Screams, Laudanum Dreams

A forum dedicated to single-thread posts of characters within the game world to help document large events, stories and milestones in one consolidated thread.
Post Reply
Posts: 18
Character: Constantine

Stygian Screams, Laudanum Dreams

Post by Murdy » December 20th, 2023, 5:34 am

"Aster. You’re mean. You’re thin as a rake. You eat all my food and your house is a mess.” The broad Yult begins as he rises from his seat, casting the carefully arranged table askew. “And you’re a terrible kisser.” He adds before sinking to one knee.

”You’re perfect. Beautiful. I wouldn’t change a thing and I don’t need a ring to tell me that. Would you do me the honor…” There is a pregnant pause before the man continues. “…of escaping these goons before they talk us into anything else.”

The straw haired man with the floppy hat turns and presents his broad back, his collar drooping to cast the angry red of his neck in stark contrast to the lilly-white skin of his back.

“By the Lord Decus, yes!” the woman called Aster exclaims, knocking her own stool askew with her customary grace as she clambers onto the man’s back.

The two head for the door. A hand reaches into view, plumbing the depths of a bowl with a ladle for the sweet, bready, fragrant contents. Kvass. Its called Kvass.

The hand. Its your hand. Younger. Your fingers don’t sting yet. Your hands don’t yet tingle, or burn like fire. They’re younger, softer. Not yet gripped and calloused by mace haft or hoe.

Constantine. You are Constantine. No, we are Constantine. This memory is ours. There were four others like it, but now only two.

You look to find the happy couple. You head for the door. There’s an anxiety like a pit in your gut and it blooms under your arms and into your lungs. A chill runs down your neck and into your shoulders, down your arms to the tips of your fingers. There’s an urgency now. You have to reach her. Stop her. Stop her.

Stop her.

The door swings open, rattling hard against the wall. The tremor casts something from the wall, and the sound of it clattering filters through the open doorway. A man emerges. He’s clad shoulder to toe in maroon, the silver tips of his boots reflecting the daylight. He wears a naval harness, but he is far from the sea. He likes it that way.

The man runs a hand through his black hair, his dusky features betraying in an instant his western blood. He’s lithe and tall. The Kaduraan blood runs strong in him, somehow. The dying breath of a conquered and despoiled people. One last gasp of defiance.

His solemn countenance is that of a man on the way to his death, but the urgency with which he moves creates a sense of dissonance.

“Aster!” He calls. “Aster, wait!”

A woman in a straw hat with flaxen hair turns from her door. Aster. She sets her keys in the hands of a lanky woman with black hair. The other woman is tall, but proud and unflinching, with high cheekbones and olive skin.

“I was just giving Doctor Drusilla the keys and documents.” Aster says with a sad smile, turning to take one last look at the clinic.

“Please don't.” Drusilla pleads, her voice breaking. “I need your help. Please. We need -you-. There's no one else. There's no one who could -ever- take your place.”

“It will be fine.“ Aster reassures the black-haired woman, taking both of the other woman’s hands with her own. “You're more capable than you let yourself believe, Doctor Drusilla.”

Drusilla’s eyes turn on the dark haired Kaduraan in maroon, pleading. “Constantine, she's giving away everything. She's saying goodbye to everyone. She's making amends. She's going to her death. There is -no doubt- that she's going to her death.”

Constantine shakes his head, his lips parting hesitantly “Drusilla, you have to let go of dis fear. You cant accept that she wants to leave and you're making up reasons to rationalize forcing her to remain.”

“Save her. At least try to. She doesn't know me. Nothing -I- say matters. Something you say will.” Drusilla begs, tears streaming, gesturing emphatically towards Aster. “You're wasting time!”

Constantine. You are Constantine. You are wasting time. She is right. The anxiety blooms out of your stomach again, gripping your heart. A cold panic spreads through you, from the back of your neck to your limbs. She is right and you are wasting time.

Save her.

You turn abruptly, your eyes swinging about to find Aster. Fear. Her desiccated corpse has been suspended. Disbelief. The flesh of her back flayed out like wings, her chest opened outward revealing only what the carrion has left. Horror. Her flaxen hair hangs sparsely from her crown. Anger.

You recoil, your knees buckling underneath you. Bile rises in your throat and tears cloud your eyes. Terror, disbelief, sorrow, guilt, and rage swim in your mind and choke your thoughts. The pain of it all sends you inward on yourself, clutching your arms tight to your body and holding your breath as the pressure builds like a coiled spring in both your lungs and in your heart.

A wracked and sorrowful sob breaks the silence. Sobbing and begging. Whoever it is, what little air they have is spent in arguing and begging futilely against the horrific truth of it all. There’s so much pain there that you feel like were you to be swept up in it you’d be carried away never to return. You realize its you. Its your sob. The pleading, the begging— its yours too.

You feel breath on your neck. You look up, wiping fiercely at snot and spit and tears. The macabre angel leans over to you, flesh-wings blocking the sun. Her eyes are gone and flies swim in and out between the decrepit lids. Her mouth opens, some scavenger having plundered most of the precious ivory within, revealing a tongue swollen and bloated with rot and maggots.

“Awful storm coming.” Comes the choked and gargling voice of Aster’s corpse, bile spilling from her lips and drip-drip-dripping onto your neck.

The Kaduraan man called Constantine recoils. He’s falling. The lanky Doctor tries to catch him, straining under his weight. He can’t see or hear anything in his grief. He doesn’t feel her at his back as he falls. He doesn’t feel her beneath him as he climbs to his knees, teeth gnashing and howling into the abyss.

He’s crushing her. He is you. He is crushing her. You are crushing her. She is crushed.


Post Reply