And on the wings of a dream, so far beyond reality;
All alone in desperation, now the time has gone.
Lost inside you'll never find, lost within my own mind,
Day after day this misery must go on!
So far away we wait for the day,
For the light source so wasted and gone,
We feel the pain of a lifetime lost in a thousand days,
Through the fire and the flames we carry on!
((I'm so so so sorry that I haven't posted in so friggin long! I've been such a slacker, sorry! I'm not going to bother giving u all the reasons and excuses. Just enjoy and review!))
I looked on as Azalia and Arya walked off quickly. Zeus followed them quickly, and I was sure that he was peppering them with questions. Unless he was in on it too.
This is horrible. Even the hatchling is in on this. I can't do this anymore. I'm going to figure this out, he fumed.
No Eragon, you shouldn't pry. It's their affairs only, Saphira responded. Eragon tried not to snarl.
Why? Did they tell you and you can't share with me? Is it like what Brom did?
Eragon! Saphira cried, fixing him with a hard glare. Do not soil Brom's memory because you are feeling spiteful. Save it and take it out on the Ra'zac.
All right, but can you at least tell me if they told you something?
They have told me nothing that you do not know. But if they were to, then it would be breaking the oath to tell you what they said. We do not age like others, Eragon, Saphira said solemnly. Two years can pass in a blink.
Roran interrupted their thoughts. "What's going on? I'm about sick of dragons and otherworldly creatures. No offense, Saphira, but I just want to live in peace with Katrina." Eragon gave him a sad smile.
"There's not going to be any peace until Galbatorix is dead. And then we can all live happily," he reminded Roran.
"But for this peace, does Azalia have to die too?"
My character POV
I stared at her, aghast.
"But… that would mean that I'm responsible for his dragon, and I'm responsible for his disability! Did I do that?" I gasped. Arya shook her head slowly, still in shock.
"I knew that you were describing these… memories, but I had no idea," she muttered. "It has to be Oromis. He's the only one with a gold sword like that, and that was his face. Even through the blur, I recognized him. Also, I've dueled him before, and I recognize his techniques and ways of moving."
"Great. So much for my brilliant idea to help join with the elves. This screws everything up. I like being evil, but not when I'm trying to be good,"
"You like being evil?" Arya asked.
"Of course. Its much more fun, you should try it sometime. There's no rules, you get to do what you want, you get free reign, and you get whatever you want…" I trailed off. Talking about it wasn't helping. I had actually been feeling proud of how good I was being, and now this. It was really scaring me that I didn't have any control over my own mind.
"No," she said, but she didn't look very firm on the topic.
We need to get back to the others. They're already getting upset. I can sense Saphira's confusion, and through her, I can feel that Eragon is very angry, Zeus put in. I nodded.
"Don't say anything to anyone. We have to keep this secret," I said, exiting the flap. Then I stopped. "Oh, Arya, can you do a spell for me?" She nodded. "I'm… I'm going to fly behind Saphira. I'll hold onto her tail or something. She is sworn to me for the time being. I could make her not tell anyone. I need you to do a spell on Eragon and Roran so that they can't see me. Is it possible?" I asked. She hesitated for a moment, then nodded.
"Yes, but I need to do it through your mind. You are the one with the control over them, so it should be you to do the spell. But since you are unable to do it yourself…" she trailed off, not needing to repeat. I opened my mouth to protest, but stopped. I had just entered her mind, so she had the right to enter mine. Even though I hadn't seen anything, I still thought she was allowed to enter mine.
There was a connection between us that I didn't know yet, but I could still feel it. I felt like we were old best friends, but I didn't remember her. I still didn't know weather our connection was a bad thing or a good thing, like if I had killed someone close to her or something.
Slowly, I nodded. She looked surprised.
"You're agreeing?" she asked, bemused. I nodded again. "Well… Okay," she murmured.
Slowly, I felt a tiny prickle in my head. I could tell that she was being careful not to hurt me.
Don't worry about harm, just do it quick, I told her. Zeus looked from me to her quickly. I felt her emit feelings of agreement, and then she plunged in. I winced slightly, but I had felt far worse before.
The hardest part was letting her take control. It was only long enough for her to speak the words, but I didn't know if I could do it. She started taking over my vocal controls, and I fought for a moment instinctively. Then I realized what I was doing, so I shoved back my instinct and allowed her control.
It was unbelievably scary, feeling your body move, but know that you're not moving it. You realize that you have no control over your own actions. You don't choose when to breath or blink. Plus, there's a stinging pain inside your head from the intruder's presence. You can't even open your own mouth to scream. But all that happened was words trickling from our mouth.
"Atranosu waíse vardo fra eld theirra kópa," we muttered. Let me be warded from their eyes.
Then Arya was pulling out of my mind. But she hesitated.
Do you want me to check for that barrier in your mind that hides those memories? she asked.
Okay I answered quickly. She extended a probe, and I directed it to the curtain in my head. She drove at it, whispering words of the ancient language, but nothing happened. And she was out.
I looked at her as her eyes pulled into focus.
"I cannot break the boundary. It is an old kind of barrier, one that can only be broken by the creator, or the creator must die," she explained. I nodded.
"The person who made the shield was most likely an elf to be able to use that much power. Either that, or it was a rider. But the only riders would be Oromis and Galbatorix. Galbatorix wouldn't do that. His style would be to just kill me instead. Oromis didn't because I had broken him, and he couldn't perform magic on me. It must be an elf," I mused.
"This elf must also be older than you, and have some kind of bond with you to perform that level of magic. That is why that boundary is seldom used. The elf must either be a soulmate, a relative, or an extremely close friend," she added. I nodded.
We must be going, Zeus reminded us. I nodded again.
"Arya, you are to tell them that I had already started off running. I will speak to Saphira, and bid her not to tell about me," I said as we headed toward the rest of our rescue group.
It was very strange, standing by people who couldn't see me. To test, I waved my hand in front of Roran's face. It just made me feel stupid when he didn't see anything.
"Where did Azalia go?" Eragon said. He said my name the same way he would say 'worm' or 'vomit'.
"She is going to run since Saphira can only carry three of us. When we get Katrina, we will stop at a village to buy horses. We don't have to rush back, but we need to get there quickly. The Ra'zac might kill Katrina, so the sooner the better," Arya said calmly. I was surprised how smoothly she could lie. Eragon took the news just as smoothly, and I saw him perk up a bit. I felt empathy for Arya; what moves would he try to pull over her now? Roran nodded curtly and climbed onto Saphira, Eragon and Arya following. Zeus was in my pack, curled among my blankets. I sucked in a deep breath. It was now or never.
Saphira? I said into her mind. She started slightly. Saphira, I command you not to tell Eragon or Roran. I also forbid you to do anything, directly or indirectly, to lead to them finding out that I am with you. She froze, and I could practically hear her mind searching for a way around my order.
What are you doing? she asked warily, giving in.
I can't run all the way and keep up with you. I have much better plans. I'm going to fly behind you. And you can't see me because of a spell I cast upon you all, using the oath you swore to me.
Fine. Wait, fly behind me? Zeus isn't near old enough to fly, she said, puzzled.
I know. I demand you to not speak of this to anyone, nor signal, indirectly tell them, or directly. Do not let anyone know about this, or even give them clues. If you let them guess it on their own, it is also breaking the oath, I said, drawing upon their bond to me again.
Okay, but I can't keep something that I don't know a secret. What is it?
I am going to fly behind you using my own means. But I can't go as fast as you, so I need to hold onto your tail or something. You won't be supporting my weight, though, I explained quickly, skirting around the subject of my wings.
Not my tail, I need that for steering. You can hold onto my leg, though. Might I ask how you are planning to fly?
Yes to the holding on part, and no to the flying interrogation.
Sounds fine to me. Does Arya know of this?
I hesitated, debating on weather it was safe to tell her. Yes.
Strange you tell an elf courier about your secrets, but not the only female dragon in existence, Saphira mused. I stayed silent, and she huffed with slight frustration. Fine. Don't tell me.
I won't, I told her cheerily. She waited a moment as I readied myself, then I jumped into the air.
Twelve feet of black and silver wings beat down on the air. Ninety pounds of muscle, skin, flesh, belongings, and hollow bones rose into the sky. I couldn't help but smirk down at Saphira, Eragon, and Roran. Arya could still see me, and I saw her subtly smirk back.
Okay, start up, I instructed Saphira. I couldn't grab on while she was on the ground. She needed her legs to push off.
She silently agreed, then began flapping. A moment later, she was airborne, rising up beside me. Without hesitating, I grabbed onto her leg. I could feel her suppress a shudder. It was likely an uncomfortable feeling, someone grabbing you and you can't see them.
It was easier than I
thought to keep my weight off her. I was in her slipstream, like
ducks in an arrow pattern. Just like that, we were off to find the
Ra'zac, rescue Roran's girl what's-her-face, and get me my
At the thought of the poison, my leg burned slightly. I took a slow breath, fighting to stay calm. It's fine. I'm going to be fine, I told myself silently.
After about an hour's flying, we soared over Melian.
We are going down now, Arya said into my mind. I found that I wasn't shuddering away from the contact as much anymore. We could get there easily now, but the sun is setting. We don't want to face them at night, and we need all of our strength.
I agreed silently, letting go of Saphira as she began to descend. I turned and wheeled backward a ways, then landed. A thought struck me.
Arya? How do I get the spell off? I asked. She paused.
I should be able to remove it. It's a good thing I didn't put a spell on you, or we would be stuck, she said. Though I couldn't do magic, I knew a fair amount about it. Distance, for an example. I knew distance affected magic. If the caster was far away from where they were directing the spell, it would take three times the energy.
A moment passed, then Arya said, Done. Come on, we're ready.
I am not quite an elf, but I do have their speed. I ran to their camp, keeping a fast and hard pace. I was at the camp in about a minute, slowing and eyeing the pot over the fire. Eragon was dropping potatoes, herbs, and a few other vegetables into it, and a lovely aroma was filling the camp. It was a good place, a shallow cave into a large rock formation.
"Nice spot," I commented. Eragon just grunted. He seemed like he was in a bad mood, so I moved on to Arya. Roran looked a bit green and shaky from the flight, and I gave him a slight sympathetic smile/smirk as I walked by.
"How was the flight?" I asked her, walking with her toward a small hill of boulders.
"Fine. Not much happened," she shrugged. "How was yours?"
"Same. It wasn't as hard as I'd thought."
"And your leg?" she whispered as soon as we were out of earshot from the men.
"Not much has changed. It hurts and burns a bit, but it's mostly numb." I would've rather had it hurt than be numb. With my metabolism, the poison would take me out in a week. Already, my entire calf was senseless.
"We need to figure something out. It seems like such a small thing, but it's been nagging at me this whole time…" she broke off, lost in thought. I paused a moment, picking up a thick, blunt stick and peeling the rotten bark off, waiting for her to continue.
"So… what is it?" I prodded. She blinked, then shook her head to clear it.
"Sorry. I just can't help but worry. Why was the egg painted? Why bother to paint an egg, then give it back to the empire? What's wrong with a black and white egg?" she muttered.
"I have no idea," I mumbled back. Then, without warning, I swung the stick at a rock, shattering the branch. I felt the shock rip through my arms, saw the bleeding splinters in my hand.
An ancient elf stood on a dias, surrounded by elves. She was so old, she almost looked her age. Her hair was more white than gray, and her eyes were an electric blue, shocking whoever dared stare into them. Though her skin was smooth and free of wrinkles, something about her face made everyone feel like a child in comparison. A hand with thin fingers and pale fingers raised; silence fell accordingly. A moment passed, not a sound disturbing the still air. Then, the ancient one spoke:
"I have looked and I have seen."
The area became quiet again, then all of the elves spoke at once, a gentle murmur like humble subjects in a church echoing the pastor's words.
As soon as the last syllable finished, every elf present witnessed a sight, but through their mind's eyes instead of their physical ones.
They saw an elf with hazel hair and eyes, teeth too sharp and face too malicious. She reached out a cautious hand, and touched a white and black dragon hatchling. A flash, then a gedwëy ignasia was burned onto her palm.
The scene rippled, and another one replaced it. The same elfish creature stood valiantly on a desolate plain, her blade standing on its tip in front of her. The blade was standing on its own- no, it was stuck into something. A body. Slightly pointed ears, dark hair, and his face was turned away, so only the back of his head was visible… the man had one hand clutching the blade, and the other was thrown out to the side. The outstretched arm twitched slightly, and the girl's eyes narrowed. It became evident that the man was experiencing extreme pain. He thrashed and writhed around the blade. A pleased smile crept across the girl's sculpted lips. On the man's hand was a gedwëy ignasia of his own.
The man and girl faded, and a last vision crept up. The girl laughed as she stood over a male elf. He was crouched on the ground, his golden sword lying useless beside him. The bright blade looked electrifying in contrast to his silvery-gray skin. He trembled, then whispered something inaduble. The color leeched back into his skin as he stood. He looked much older and withered than he had a moment ago. Far away, the roar of a pained dragon could be heard.
The vision dimmed, and was replaced by fire. No, ice. Then water. God! We're being buried alive! The heat, it's too much…
The elves returned to themselves. On the dias, the ancient elf slowly opened her eyes. Without a command, the anxious whispering stopped.
"We hope you have looked well. That is the one who will destroy Alagaësia. Fear her, hate her… love her, take care of her. Destroy her. Keep her alive." The ancient elf's voice had lowered to a hiss. "She is not. All that is, is she…"
Without another word, the old prophet slowly hobbled away, off the dias and into the woods…
I jolted back to present, but only to be drawn into another memory before my eyes could focus.
Islandi paced angrily in her rooms. A nervous elf was sitting on a bed. Likely a friend of Islandi.
"Why would she do this to me? She should not have shared that with the entire elf population, just for me to hear in gossip!" Islandi exclaimed.
"I'm not exactly sure. She is getting old, very old even for our standards… her mind is fraying," the other elf suggested gently. Islandi snorted.
"Sahria, I would have thought you would be able to come up with something better than that. Even ancient ones remember their queen is their first confidence. She should've come to me first."
"What's done is done. What will we do to try and correct it?"
"Galbatorix has likely found out by now. He will try and find the white egg, and get it to the girl," Islandi said. "We must take measures to keep the white egg from him. But… I see that he will get the egg, despite our efforts. We must conceal it…"
The room pulled away into the distance until it was nonexistent.
This time, when I came back, I did not slide into another memory. I vaguely remembered that I hadn't been there at those scenes. I'd scryed them, using a strong connection to Ellesmera to see inside.
"I… I saw that," Arya whispered, her voice filled with quiet excitement. "Last time, I must've tapped into your memories. I was seeing it from your point of view. The egg was painted…"
"So Galbatorix wouldn't know it was the white egg," I supplied.
"…And wouldn't get it to you!" Arya finished. "There's part of the mystery done. We'll figure out more of it in a while. I'm tired, and hungry. Let's go back to the camp; Eragon's cooking is actually very good," she suggested. I nodded and followed her back.
I angrily stirred the soup, sloshing a bit over the edge and into the fire, smoldering it a bit.
"Brisingr," I muttered, and the fire flared up. Too hot. It burned my hands a bit, and I fell backwards.
Anger doesn't accomplish much, Saphira observed. I grumbled and pushed myself back up.
Something on your tail? she asked.
It's Azalia again, she acknowledged. It was more of a statement than a question.
Has she shared any secrets? I shot back. She blinked slowly, turning to observe me with a large eye.
You need to settle down and stop being paranoid.
I- I broke off as Arya and Azalia returned to the camp. Roran noticed, and his face flushed with something other than airsickness. He jumped to his feet and went to meet them. I didn't need to have magic and extra senses to tell he was angry about something.
He marched toward Azalia and grabbed her elbow, pulling her back to the rock formation she'd just come from.
"We need to talk," I heard him growl. She gave him an amused look, but obliged. She linked her arm through his and walked gracefully beside him. He looked scraggly and mangy, like an uncivilized nomad beside her predatory grace and beauty. I smirked, then turned back to the soup.
I strode off with Roran, resisting the urge to pick his mind. We reached the rocks, and I sat down on one.
Careful, Zane whispered into my mind from his crevice he'd been sleeping in, back at the camp.
"So? What's on your mind?" I said sweetly. He glowered at me.
"You. You and Arya, always running off with your dragons and elves and shit," he snarled with surprising anger. I raised my eyebrows, but he wasn't finished. "You think you're so great, creeping away to talk with Arya about something-or-other, leaving me and Eragon in the dark. Why do you have to come along, anyway? You're just slowing us down, running like this. Eragon and I can take care of ourselves. These Cha-sac aren't a problem, we can take them easy. Hell, I could take you easy."
"It's Ra'zac, not Cha-sac," I said. Then I let the full depth of my anger blossom.
In an instant, I was in his face.
"Do you think you could ever out run me?"
Next moment, I was in his mind.
Do you think you could ever out think me?
Then I was smashing my foot into a rock beside him, my anger doubling my strength. The rock cracked erratically, falling apart in large chunks.
"Do you think you could ever fight me?"
I was back in his face again, a mere centimeter away from his throat, my sharp teeth brushing the skin in a potentially deadly kiss. I could feel his life, so thin and fragile, mere millimeters away. I could take his life in an instant, using no more energy than it would take to blink an eye, and would think nothing of it.
"Do not make an enemy of me, Roran Stronghammer," I murmured. The way I said his name was the same I would if I said 'kull' or 'empire'. "If you do, you won't be an enemy for long."
With that, I spun and walked back to camp without a backward glance. My strong hearing told me he was frozen, standing beside a shattered rock in a desolate plain.
((I'm trying not to give you a cliffie. My posting has been terrible lately, and I'm not sure when I'll get back to this. I tried to make it long for you, though. I've moved on to bigger and better things; writing an actual book. Not a fanfiction or a roleplay plot or a challenge, a real story, all mine. I have a status section in my profile, if you're ever thinking, where is redfeatherz? You can just check there, and I'll try my best to update it as often as possible.))