|Black, White and Green
Author: WordlyVaudevillian PM
A story about the lives of two very special Derse pawns, and their adventures on the Battlefield at the center of Skaia. No kids, no trolls, no shipping. Written in the second person. Hussiekind writing specibus. Complete.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Fantasy - Wayward Vagabond - Chapters: 17 - Words: 48,272 - Reviews: 25 - Favs: 13 - Follows: 9 - Updated: 11-30-12 - Published: 05-16-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8122443
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
When you first wake up, everything is cold. And wet. Very wet, too. Cold? Wet? What do these things mean? You guess they mean whatever it is you're feeling right now. They just seem like the right words to use.
Your eyes crack open for the very first time. You guess you don't mind the cold, or the wet. What else is there to feel? Hell if you know. You only have a few second's worth of experiences to draw back on. You're curious. Curious. What a strange word. You seem to mind the curious more than the cold or the wet.
You try to move your limbs around, to get a feel for your surroundings. You are floating in water. It's not uncomfortable. Even if you did have something else to compare it to, you don't think you would mind it very much. You try to get a feel for your body. You touch your left arm with your right claw, and move it down to your where you think your left ribs must be. Your four digits find nothing but rigid carapace all the way down. You guess you're okay with this. A hard shell must be useful if something's trying to eat you, right?
You look up, then down. You reach out with your right claw. Yep. It's a tank, all right. A little bigger than you, and perfectly cylindrical. You have just enough room to stretch out a little. You guess this must be your house. A little on the small side, but you figure you'll make do.
You see others like you, in houses of their own. Maybe about ten or twelve more, from what you can see. Most of them are still sleeping. A few of them look like they've been awake for a little while already; they are calmly and fondly regarding their surroundings. One or two of them seem to be looking for the front door to their homes. You wave hello to your new neighbors. Those who notice you wave back.
You notice something a little strange about them. Your neighbors, like you, are black all over. Why, then, are two little white tubes sticking out of each of their backs, and leading into the floors? You suppose you must have the tubes, too, but you can't really reach that part of your back from any angle. You didn't really mind the idea, anyway. What's wrong with a little color?
You've only been awake for a few minutes now, but already you're starting to feel quite tired. The way you're floating is pretty comfortable, so you see nothing wrong with going back to sleep. Your neighbors look like they're getting pretty tired, too.
When you wake up for the second time, you notice something has changed. Your left arm used to be just a regular old, jet black arm. Now there's a grid-like pattern of short white lines, perpendicular to each other, in little squares on your wrist. You guess that's pretty cool. Yesterday, your arm had nothing special or unusual about it, but today, it's got all these white lines on it! You wonder what cool developments tomorrow will bring!
You really wish you could communicate with your neighbors a little more, though. You tap on your only window, which is to say, your whole wall. You hope the tapping will garner some attention. You also wish you could find a way out of your house, and maybe explore the world outside. Maybe even give your neighbors a neighborly handshake. Alas, there's no way out from the roof or the floor. There's no WAY you would try to break the glass, either. It's your own house! Why would someone ever want to do something so silly?
The sound of your tapping doesn't carry very well, and your aqueous surroundings also limit the force with which you can tap the glass. Also, most of your neighbors, even some of those who were already awake yesterday, are still asleep today. Since you've got nothing better to do, you decide to do what exploring you can. From inside your house. With your eyes. It occurs to you that you might be able to see what's directly behind you if you turn around. You rotate your body 180 degrees.
You see a single large tank behind you. This tank contains a large, black knight, maybe about eight times your size. It looks like just a huge horse's head, but you know it's called a knight. Horse? Knight? You don't know how you know what these things are. You just know that you know, ya know? It really is an impressive sight. Maybe it's your leader. The leader of the pawns. Pawns. That's what you and your neighbors are called. Of course you're pawns! What else would you be, silly? You think that someone who doesn't know who or what they are isn't very much of a someone at all! You don't really question how you came to know that one.
Leader of the pawns… no, that's not right. That would be the King. It has to be the King. Who else would it be? If the knight was the leader of the pawns, then who would the King lead? That's a stupid question.
Maybe the knight is like a sub-king. It's just so big, it HAS to be one of your superiors. This knight doesn't look quite finished, though. Maybe you should ask your neighbor. He's been watching you behold the knight for a little while now.
You wave at him. He waves back. You point to the knight, and shrug your shoulders. He looks at it, and then shrugs back at you. He doesn't know.
You point at him, then at yourself, then shrug your shoulders, tilting your head to one side. You're asking a question, not just declaring your ignorance. He shrugs back at you, like he's perplexed by the question. Just what are you trying to ask him? You gesture to all your fellow pawns, then shrug your shoulders with a head tilt.
He shrugs back at you. But this is a more knowledgeable shrug. Like he knows what you're trying to ask, but doesn't know the answer to your question. Even if he did, you're pretty sure the message would be too complex to convey through claw-points, shoulder-shrugs or head-tilts alone.
You guess this guy is your new best friend. He must be, since he's your only friend so far. But you don't know all that much about him, you've only just met the guy. Maybe you'll save the 'best' part for later. You hope you'll make other friends, too.
An alarm sounds. But not really an alarm, more like just a buzzer. Most of the pawns have already woken up by now, but those still sleeping are roused rather rudely. Some bright lights turn on overhead, illuminating the area outside your immediate neighborhood. The pawns who just woke up look a little distraught. You guess that's because they had been sleeping all this time, and didn't have time to figure things out like you did. You give them your best reassuring ogle.
Actually, you haven't really figured out all that many things. You speculated about your home. You speculated about your neighbors. You speculated about the tubes. You speculated about your arm tattoo, and if the others had ones like it. You speculated about the knight and about leadership. And you made a new friend!
Realizing that you don't have it all figured out, either, starts to make you feel a little distraught, too. In the new light, you can see yourself in the reflection of your window. You try to give yourself your best reassuring ogle. You cringe. Is THAT your best reassuring ogle? It's more like a disconcerting ogle. In light of this development, you try instead for a re-concerting ogle.
Ohgodohgodohgod. Maybe you should think about something else. You're really starting to creep yourself out. You turn away from your reflection, but it won't stop following you!
Just as you're on the verge of flipping the fuck out, a large metal door opens on one wall of the room. You see some more neighbors come through the door, around sixteen of them. They are wearing uniforms and hats in a variety of pretty colors. They must be pawns who figured out how to leave their houses! Maybe they'll show you how to leave, too! Maybe you can all explore together; see what's on the other side of that door! Maybe you'll get a cool hat, too!
The new pawns break formation and set to work. Three of them come up to your house. Two of them link their arms together to form a step-up for the third. This pawn begins unscrewing the roof of your house. You guess that's okay with you. If it's the way to get out, and all. You can put the roof back on later if you want to. The pawn finishes unscrewing the roof, and throws it to the side. He sticks out his claw to you. You see his line grid. Like yours, but different. You take his claw in yours, and he pulls you outside. The tubes at your back fall off with the slightest tug.
You take your first breath of air.