Disclaimer: I do not own Champions Online.
Summary: Sometimes, we need help to put ourselves back together again.
Note from the Shadows: We're back! This is the sequel to Breaking points, and, well... You'll see. This story deviates rather majorly from the champions storyline in someway, in others, it sticks to it.
[Chapter One: Knock The Board Over]
The girl who seemed unbreakable - broke.
The girl who seemed so strong - crumbled.
The girl who always laughed it off - cried.
The girl who would never stop trying - finally gave up & quit.
Serdurni looked at the other three girls as she sat in their shared room, knees drawn up to her chest. Her striped, black and white hair was pulled back in a tight braid, her grey skin devoid of injury. Her stone wings were wrapped around herself in what could pass for a gentle hug. Worry flashed in her purple eyes as she looked the other girls over. Sitting in the corner, shaking, was a young darkling woman with purple eyes and a tiara, looking around in terror every few seconds. Serdurni had heard her screaming in her sleep the night before, yet she had pushed her away when she tried to calm her. She'd already been there when Serdurni arrived, though she hadn't said much.
Sitting in the corner, metal wings wrapped around herself, was a small little fairy, with green skin, a missing left eye, a missing right arm, and a missing left leg. Serdurni almost felt like crying whenever she looked at the small fairy, heart breaking at the evidence of the tiny creatures wounds. The little fairy had barely spoken since she had arrived, crying softly in her sleep. The little fairy had been brought in a day or two ago, crying brokenly over something and talking about Tex. That worried Serdurni greatly, to tell the truth. What had happened, while she was kept here?
Hiding under one of the beds, though, was the one that frightened Serdurni the most. A little malnourished child, with long white hair, a tattered dress, and purple eyes. She'd been brought in just the night before, barely conscious, with blood splatters all over her. She was covered in bandages now, absolutely terrified. As soon as she had woken up, the child had darted under the bed, and no amount of coaxing would convince her to come out or even say her name. The child hadn't even spoken, or made any sound. Nearby, sitting curled up on the blanket Serdurni had finally slipped under the bed for the child, was a small,injured tabby kitten.
As for Serdurni herself, she was still shocked from what had happened. She'd arrived a week ago, after she fell asleep crying on the pavement. She had panicked at first, until a man with sort black hair and a kind smile had come in, and sat by the bed beside her. Serdurni shut her eyes, losing herself to the memories.
She was sitting on the bed mutely, wings wrapped tightly around her as she rocked back and door opened and shut with a soft click, then she felt a weight on the bed next to her. "It's alright, child, you're safe. I promise, no one shall hurt you here," a soft voice said gently, as someone draped a blanket over her wings and shoulders. "Please, do calm down. It pains me to see you so frightened. I promise, no one here wants to hurt you, and you can go home soon. Everything will be explained once all of you arrive, alright?" Despite herself, the young Valori felt herself calming down as she listened to his words. A soft touch of magic touched her skull, until she calmed further, falling the man stood and left.
She'd seen the man only twice since- Once, when he brought the small fairy in, already awake, and last night, when he had rushed straight through the room to the shared bathroom, the small girl in his arms, and the kitten on his shoulder. She, along with the darkling woman, had watched from the doorway as the man cleaned and bandaged the child's wounds, horrified. Halfway through, the darkling woman had fled back to her corner, sobbing. Serdurni had followed, wrapping a blanket around the woman carefully, sitting beside her until the woman had pushed her away. Before the man had left, placing the child on the empty bed, her turned to the other three girls. "Everything is going to be explained in the morning," he promised, "Get some sleep.
Now, all three girls were sitting quietly, Serdurni's eyes returning to the door. All but the child's heads went up as they heard the click of the door opening, the man stepping in. His short black hair was neatly combed, and his brown eyes were shadowed with worry as he looked over the scene, shaking his head. He crouched down in front of the bed, opening his arms. "Little one, do you remember me? I am friend, I brought you to safety. All here, are friend. Come here, little one." At his words, the child hesitantly came out from under the bed, clinging to him. Serdurni hadn't realized it before, but now that she listened closely, she realized this strange man had a British accent. He rubbed the child's back gently, standing with her in his arms, and turned to the remaining three girls. "If you'll follow me, I can explain what's going on over breakfast."
As they sat at the breakfast table, none of them saying a word, the man looked them over. "Each of you, has been brought here to recover," he said eventually. Three heads jerked up simultaneously, staring at him. "Recover from what?" the darkling woman asked venomously. The man raised a hand in a gesture of peace. "You collapsed. Broke down. Piled stress after stress, until your mind couldn't handle it anymore. You know this especially well, don't you, miss Matea?"
The woman jerked, eyes flashing. "Don't call me that..." she muttered, looking away. The man sighed. "I am hoping, that over the next couple weeks, that you will help each other heal from the wounds of the heart, and soul- and maybe grow to trust each other, in the process. Some of you, have been hurt, so many times, by the ones you love..." Even Serdurni winced at this, eyes watering as she thought of Fria. She heard a chocked sob, and realized, in shock, it was the little fairy.
The man looked them over, shaking his head. "We'll do introductions later, I think..." he muttered.