Hi. I have been a fan of the movie Twister for years, and my favorite part has always been, by far, the tornadoes themselves, as I have always thought they seemed like characters, living things, themselves. Think about it! They have a shape, a voice, a goal, movements, and they almost seemed to be hunting and pursuing their prey. They've also each got a personality of their own. Ever notice how no two (and this goes for real life ones as well) look alike? Each one seems to have it's own face, style and personality! So I thought, hey, why not do a fanfic that portrays them as being alive? They may be classified as weather, they may not have the traits that other living things have to qualify them as alive in the scientific sense, but they still manage to seem so lively all the same! Plus, I've always noticed a haunting, ghostly, supernatural sort of quality throughout the movie, and I think it's kind of a shame they never really went much into it , explaining tornadoes beyond the scientific sense. You see, while not exactly what I would call religious, I am a very spiritual person in my own way, nonetheless. I believe everything, whether natural and manmade, has a sort of life force all it's own, making it the individual thing that it is. It may sound corny to some, but it's what I believe. Now for the story. Warning: There is content in this story that requires some amount of deep, soulful thinking, as well as an appreciation for the supernatural, to understand or appreciate. Also included are some Wiccan as well as Native American references. So all you shallow, simple-minded people (you know who you are) turn back now if you don't think you can handle it! But if you can, I hope you enjoy it.
Grgh, I almost forgot the bloody disclaimer, I hate this part: I do not own the movie Twister, Jo, Bill, Jo's family or any other characters that will show up in later chapters, as they are all owned by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, and uh, whoever else owns them, I guess! One character I do own however, is the wind spirit whose point of view this story is told from, and who will also be given a name later on!
So, enjoy! :)
Chapter 1: Nostalgic feelings
The wind. The weather. The air. At times it is a gentle, refreshing caress of a breeze. Other times it is a harsh, angry storm, occasionally chancing to swell up to proportions so monstrous that is becomes an insidious nightmare to those weaker than it. Yes, the wind is a flighty, unpredictable element. It has thoughts, decisions and moods but no emotion. And I could tell you.
Because I am the wind.
In a manner of speaking, at least. I am not the only one, mind you. There are many, many others, and together, they, we, make up the air.
I am only a part of the wind.
I am a being that would be known by many names, a goddess, a spirit, a ghost, a sylph, or even a demon or a monster, regarding what I am capable of.
But such names have become obsolete in this area of the world in which I frequent, this continent now named North America, conquered and claimed by settlers from another land centuries ago. Their curiosity having evolved into knowledge, their science and logic has found ways to explain practically anything that perplexes their culture, allowing them to easily remedy any problems that are otherwise mysterious. Quite impressive, really.
But they have a long way to go, still.
For their world remains full of an infinite number of mysteries that have yet to be explained, or even discovered, for that matter. Among those mysteries, those things that have been studied for centuries but are not yet fully understood, is me. For I am a capricious, forever changing being, as likely to be little more than a gentle whisper as I am to unexpectedly shift and grow until I reach my greatest, my most violent and destructive of forms: that of a tornado. My favorite form, I dare say.
For normally, the air has little, if any, feelings. The wind thinks, decides, and does as it pleases, no matter what form it takes. But it does not feel. Feeling and emotion are traits of Water. Air is not, however, without a life force of it's own. And I am the most in touch with it, I feel most alive, when I am a tornado. It is then that I am fastest, strongest, hungriest, and most visible to the human eye. It is in that form that I have a shape and can be seen in a single glance. A hurricane may be bigger, and less contained in it's power, but it lacks the personality, the humanity, if you will, of a tornado. And yes, it is, despite it's size, weaker in wind power.
These precious moments are rare for me, but when they do occur, I feel the most that the wind is able to feel, getting satisfaction from prowling the landscape, consuming, destroying everything that lacks the wisdom to avoid my path. The greatest experience of being a tornado, however, is the consuming of life! The more significant, intelligent and complex the life form, the more "flavored", and all the more better. Naturally, my favorite and most sought-after prey is Human. Cows and other animals unfortunate enough to not escape in time offer a fair amount of satisfaction, and are what I must commonly settle for, for humans are willful, and are not caught without a fight, so they require a rarely available amount of power to catch. But when I am lucky enough to snatch even one, provided the needed power lasts long enough, I devour not their body, not their flesh, but their life.
What is there to be gained from this, you may wonder? Well, it cannot be fully understood unless you are what I am: a fleshless, ravenous, pitiless but not completely mindless life form, lacking any organic trait that qualifies you as a living thing in the eyes of humans and their science, such as organs, breath, or a need to ingest fuel, yet alive all the same. There is something so sublime about experiencing the soul of a human, with their complexities, their energy, and their emotions that make consuming them and thereby forcing them to share these things with you, it's simply marvelous! It's enough to make a being like myself envious, even.
Or in my case, nostalgic.
You see, although I have been what I am for a long time in human terms, I was not this way forever.
Once, a long time ago, I had walked among these creatures, and once I, too, had flesh, a face, emotions.
Once, I was human.
Although such memories may not matter when you have become one with the wind, they are still there. You may not feel anything from them, but you know of them anyway. And I remember the facts and truth of what I had once been, even if I do not recall how it all felt at the time. And there are times when I find myself almost yearning to.
One of those times that occurred in fact, was an especially memorable one to me.
As I mentioned before, the moments when my power is incredible enough for me to pick up and consume something as difficult and feisty as a person are rare, fleeting ones, and even I am not completely able to predict when or where the mood will take me to such extreme measures. But when I am granted them, I make the most of what I can of them.
And that's exactly what I did, one fateful day.
The year was 1969, and the month was June. The southern part of North America was in the warmth and humidity of late spring, the ideal time and place to become a tornado. The conditions were just right that day. Perfect. Perhaps it was because of this perfect weather that I felt my appetite for human souls slowly creep up on me, and it could not be helped. This hunger swelled and grew and refused to go away. With it grew my power, until at last I had achieved the height of my strength. That of what they call an F5.
I had already chosen my target: This cheerful-looking little farm house that seemed to stand out in the middle of nowhere, complete with a tall windmill, just perfect for delivering satisfying strikes of lightning to!
Naturally, the family that lived here were aware of my presence mere minutes before my arrival, and were already hurrying for their storm cellar, an underground shelter designed to keep out my kind. They made it, much to my dismay, and shut the door, only opening it again a few seconds later to let their pet dog in, who had nearly gotten left behind in the house that would be mere rubble once I was through with it. Absent-minded fools. That is what I find so amusing, and even oddly admirable, about humans-No matter how selfless and self-sacrificing of each other they try to be, not even they are entirely above leaving others to fend for themselves, when under the pressure of fear and disaster. Survival of the fittest.
And survival was something I was not about to grant without a fight. After making short work of their house, the barn and the chickens that were kept in there (all of which, were quite fine, for appetizers!), I rounded on the humans, the main course. Though they may have made it to the safety of the cellar, I was not ready to admit defeat just yet. I was determined to claim at least one human soul before this fine night was over! But how? Ah yes, the cellar door! It just needed to be removed, wherein I would be able to suck them out as I pleased! Hardly a challenge, as it was already fairly loose, and nothing a twister as powerful as me could not handle. Approaching the cellar, I focused the power of my wind on the door's hinges, and it began to shake. Good. In no time at all these humans would be at the mercy of my hunger- What was this? The cellar door had suddenly stopped shaking as much, as if someone were trying to hold it. There was a voice shouting "I can't hold it anymore!!"
Curse it!! The male of the family! He was trying to hold the door shut, the deluded fool! Well, I would show him what a joke his feeble human will was, next to that of my monstrous and savage appetite. I fought back against his stubbornness and blew my wind even harder to take the cellar door and the human which held on to it for my own. Our disagreements resulted in a sort of tug-of-war game, which did not take long for him to lose..and me to win.
"Oh God!! I can't hold it anymore!!!"
He was right.
Sure enough, the door finally surrendered and became sucked up into my depths. And with it, came my prized human prey, at last!
As the man swirled around inside of the funnel that was me, he screamed and yelled bloody murder, as if he was dying, and indeed he was. You see, as a tornado, my insides are not meant to sustain living things, but to destroy them, which was what I was doing. There is very little oxygen inside of this form of mine, which is what the fleshly and the plant beings require to survive. This lack of air was suffocating the human, killing him, as was my myriad of debris that struck him continuously. As he was dying, his soul was leaving his tiny body, becoming my meal. And what a meal he was, this little man! It seemed like forever since I had last devoured a human, and making him all the more delicious was the mixture of so many emotions that made up his soul. It all made me feel so alive! Just as I, in tornado form, am a whirlwind of air, this man's soul was a whirlwind of thoughts, feelings and memories. The ones that were the most obvious at the moment were sheer terror, pain, sorrow, and anger, but there were many others, not visible at the moment (why should they be?), but certainly there in the back of his mind. These I had heard of names for, joy, pleasure, hilarity, love... Love...
That one, particular emotion struck me as odd, but intriguing. Love..what was it? With it were connected images, memories of him and his family, his wife, and their daughter, both of whom were still down deep in the cellar, screaming and crying and cursing at their loss.
Something happened to me then.
I am not certain how, but as I consumed this man's life, his memories, although not mine, caused a sudden sensation in my mind, a sense of familiarity, a sense of...nostalgia.
What was happening to me?
I was a tornado, a merciless, ravenous column of the most destructive winds on Earth. I lived to destroy. I had no feelings. I could not feel. But I did. Even though the moment was faint and brief, it had still been.
Before long, the human that was my victim had died completely, and as he did, so, too, began my power. The hunger that I felt many hours ago, the hunger that brought me to the point where I presently was, slowly began to subside. My winds slowly died down, I grew tired and weak, until at last I could no longer hold on to the ground, and I finally drifted back up into the sky which was just beginning to grow pale with the morning light.
But though that may have been the end of that form of mine for the time being, it wasn't the end of me.
Once again I was back to being the mere spirit of the air that I normally am, and now I was looking down at the scene, and the carnage that I had left in my wake. The wreckage of scattered debris that had once been a house and a barn was a satisfying sight to me, as proof of what power I was capable of. I, the wind, like the rest of the area, was now silent. The only sound that could be heard was the song of a bird.
Then came another sound. Voices. The mother and the daughter. They were still alive? But how? I was sure nothing could withstand the power of F5 winds! Of course, they had been fairly deep in the now doorless cellar, far in the back. Also, the mother had been rather heavy in her weight, making her, and the child she somehow managed not to lose as well, something of a bother to pick up.
But there had to be more than that. After all, a tornado as strong as the one I had been ought to be able to pick up anything it wishes.
So why did they survive?
Then I remembered the man, and how, only one though he may have been, I had enjoyed him. Was that it? Had I been so distracted toying with him that I completely forgot about the others?
Well, no matter. I got what I really wanted, and the night had not been a complete waste.
I heard the mother's and daughter's voices again. They were talking, and they were crying. Crying? But why? They themselves had not been harmed, and my previous ferocity had passed. The moment was over. So what reason did they have to be upset? Because they were human. And it is the nature of humans to become sentimental, with their emotions, and grow attached, possessive of things that are of no concern to us forces of nature. Understandable, in a way. They are, after all, weak in comparison to us, so I suppose it is to be expected that they would form ties to each other and band together. Safety in numbers. And when one is eliminated the others have one less defender among them, and this upsets them. But there is no reason for me care. These two, just like every other human on this earth, are mere faces in the crowd, lost in a sea of others. There will always be others for the taking. No one individual matters.
So if these two humans were so insignificant, what was I still doing here?
At last, after what seemed like an eternity, they emerged, the mother, her daughter, and the dog. They seemed weak, shocked, and weary from lack of rest, but very much alive and unharmed.
I watched them as they began rummaging through the debris, collecting whatever items and belongings were still there and still salvageable. The mother managed to gather a fair amount of unharmed objects within a period of minutes. Eventually she told her daughter that they needed to go to a homeless shelter, since they were now without proper dwellings. The girl said nothing. She looked away from the devastated scene, off into the distance. I, being a part of the air, could see her from every angle, whichever direction she faced. And when I looked at her face, I saw something I had never seen in a human before. Young though she was, the expression in her eyes made her seem far older. She seemed..dead, almost. Like a piece of her soul had been ripped away from her, along with that of her father. At the same time, however, she also looked alive to me. It was as if tiny embers were lurking behind her wet eyes, and that they would grow until in time they would be lethal flames. It was a look of hatred. And more disturbing still, was that these eyes, though it seemed impossible, were staring right at me. And at that moment I stared back, as well.
The air turned oddly cold, considering the month that it was. Time froze, as the girl and I stared at each other.
"Jo, c'mon honey. We have to get to the shelter now." The mother's voice broke the silence like a rock being hurled through a frozen pond.
The girl didn't move.
Finally the child's icy gaze faded, as she turned away and joined her mother. Together they limped with their bare feet through the debris and made their way towards the dirt road. I remained on the scene, questioning what had just transpired. The girl..what was she looking at? Was it.. me? No, that couldn't be. I was a spirit of the wind, something with no form, something that could not be seen by human eyes. Or could I be? I have long heard from various sources over my long years as a force of nature, that young children are the most likely of humans to be able to see spirits. If that were the case, and young Jo had been looking directly at me, with her eyes so cold and dead, yet burning with an ambitious rage, then it was clear that she hated me for what I had done. That was when it happened again, that same sensation that had occurred when I had the girl's father in my clutches... I felt. This time though, it was a different sort of feeling, and a less welcome one at that: Fear.
What? Ridiculous! After all, I am a force of Nature. Immortal, unpredictable, and more powerful then she could ever be! What did I have to be afraid of? What could this puny human child possibly do to me? I had no flesh to inflict any injuries on. And she was only a human, with no influence on the elements of the world. I could do exactly as I saw fit, and there would be nothing she could do to stop me!
So what was I scared of? Why did I suddenly feel so vulnerable, and so threatened? Why did I feel anything at all? My answer came without warning. "Ack!"
I stepped on broken glass.
Stepped?? With what??
I had a solid foot.
I had more. I had not one, but two feet, attached to a pair of legs, attached to a pelvis! I reached down to feel with my hands-I had hands! And arms as well!! Hips, a waist, stomach, back, chest, neck, head, FACE! Everything!
I had a human body.
I simply stood there, not knowing what to do or what to think. As the reality of it sank in, however, I decided I wanted to know what I looked like. Scanning the wrecked area with my eyes, I found the broken remains of a mirror. Hesitantly, I reached down, picked it up, and looked into my own reflection for the first time.
I was female. Fairly young in appearance, overall. Native-American, in shape and design. I looked fully human.
But I looked far less alive than any human I had ever glimpsed. My skin was not the copper tone that a Native American's skin should be, but it looked like it used to be. It was a dusky, pail, grayish brown, like it no longer contained blood, even appearing transparent in some areas. My hair, long, straight, and stringy, was a dull black mixed with shades of gray, and it framed a face with little emotion, a face with dusky gray lips that had no smile, and sunken, dark eyes that looked little more than black holes burned into my dead mask of a face.
Was this what I used to look like, so long ago?
Next I noticed what I was wearing: A billowing, mostly white dress with a dark gray sash set high above my waist. The sleeves and skirt looked slightly tattered as they rippled and wavered in the morning summer breeze.
A closer look at my reflection revealed small, dangling earrings shaped slightly like tiny tornadoes themselves. A simple necklace made of stones and a few animal teeth hung around my neck, while a black and white feather of a bird hung down the back of my hair.
Once more I stood there, perplexed. So I was human. I was solid. I was visible.
I was confused!
How had this happened? Hours ago I had been an unfeeling, ethereal monster of destruction, now..now I was this. Humans had been the very prey I had sought after and pursued for so long, and now I was one of them.
What was I must do now, I wondered. Should I accept this new predicament and begin my new life as a human? At first, I nearly leaped at the idea. Why not? At last, I could now experience all the things they felt and cared about! I could see eye to eye with them!
Eye to eye...
Then I remembered Jo, the girl. I remembered the way she looked at me. I remembered-and now I felt-the pain, emptiness and anger I saw in her eyes. The hatred. I knew she would never forgive me, the tornado that devoured the soul of her father. And if she were to see me like this, as a solid, helpless entity vulnerable to the same pain, then there was no doubt that she would do her very best to make me pay.
Again came the fear. Though it was warm late Spring, approaching Summer, I felt cold in my new skin. The tables had turned. Once I was the predator, now I was the prey. I didn't like it. I didn't want it. I didn't care about feelings, joy, love or any of that nonsense anymore, none of that was important! I didn't need it! I could be dead for all I cared, I just wanted to stop being afraid. I wished I were simply air again!
Suddenly, the fear passed. Suddenly I was floating, airborne. And I realized the body I had seconds ago was gone, vanished without a trace. The emotions were gone, but at least so was the fear, and the sense of vulnerability and helplessness. Once more, I was the wind, an invisible breeze with thoughts but no feelings.
So it appeared I hadn't lost any power at all, but rather gained a new one. A new form. And apparently this one, like the others, could be conjured or banished at will, much to my relief. It was unbelievable, even to an immortal spirit of nature. How had I acquired this new form? I am long familiar with the art of shape-changing of course, but this was entirely new and unexpected. Since when did I have enough feeling in me to imagine and will myself to be human? When..? Wait.
The father. The human whose soul I devoured, the first one I'd had since I don't remember when, had so much life and will and emotion that, for a moment, he had shared it with me.
So that was it. That must have been it! The man's devotion for his family, which drove him to sacrificing his life, was so strong it could be felt even by a soulless killer like I was.
Simply incredible. I had never guessed a being so seemingly puny as a human could have had such power. True, his kind still had much to learn, but so, it appeared, did my kind. And I knew that this power he had passed on to me, he had also passed on to his offspring. I knew, because I saw this very power in her eyes. This would make her a formidable human being, a match for even the powers of the greatest storms on Earth. The child felt she had been wronged, and I knew she would spend the rest of her life trying to make it right, not resting until she got even.
She will likely never be able to directly control us, but if her will and resourcefulness, inherited by her father, stay with her by the time she is fully grown and independent, it is possible she could find a way to help spare the lives of so many souls, of those that flee in terror from my wrath.
An impressive, and rather admirable goal for a human. And certainly amusing, seeing such a small creature chase after such a great purpose.
But what will she do?
Whatever may come, I intend to observe this little one for a long time as she lives and grows, and enjoy doing so.
The day will come when we meet again.
So, what'd you think so far? Don't be offended by that part about individual people being expendable and not valuable, for that is just what the Tornado Spirit thinks, not what I think. And who knows? Maybe she'll have a change of heart!
But you never know, do ya?
BTW, it just so happens that this particular OC of mine was once a human in a previous life, and had died and been reincarnated as a shape-changing spirit of the wind. But more about that later.
Just in case I confused you a little.
Thank you. :)