“Dreaming of Lights” Chapter Two Part Three and Four

Onwards, always onwards. Yet now- the walls were awake. The doors held shimmering shapes that laughed and danced to a thrumming that was not unlike music yet quite wasn’t. And once we had passed them- they swooped down to attack our backs.

I whirled to face them, lifting my arms and transforming as I leapt into the air.

It was a perfect shielding pose. My arms turned to stone that writhed toghether in a peiced disk. One foot remained balanced on the floor and the rest of me was suspended between, mid-way stone and mid-way person.

The first attack landed square on my disk. Before the second blow could land a familiar hand snatched at my handle in the middle of my back. As I was lifted I was flicked to whirl fully into a shield that could cover master from head to toe. In a dull thud-thud-thud, the ethereal blows rained down on me senselessly.

In this state, I could not see but I had come to sense what was happening about me. That whirring of ehtereal that slid around me from behind? That was master’s sword doing its dance. The bursts before me were the strange beings being slain and dismembered, bursting like glittering fireworks.

Then, in a toss, I was thrown in a backwards spin. It dismembered me piece by piece so I landed on my four feet in cat form.

I must admit, the first few times I’d seen myself as this I’d sat and adored myself. A pitch little black cat, I had magnificent fur three inches long and glowing green eyes. I was beautiful.

But now, I ran at master’s side as we dashed forward. We moved as one, our shadows mingling as we darted between swooping creatures that dashed for our backs. Again I was forced to leap up to cover him, smashing another ethereal monster from stabbing him through the back. Again, our dance repeated. I was twirled, used, and thrown again to his side. This time, I was in human form with my dagger in hands to help him. Proud, I defended his side as best I could. It was very good. He left me his entire back and right side, not even looking there so much he trusted me.

But we were not here to clean house, metaphorically speaking. Only once the monsters (‘beings of alternative ethereal form’, he would have scolded me) thinned, I was snatched up again by the handle that appeared to his touch, and we darted forward. He left me in human-with-feline-abilities form, running with my daggers at his side. And that was when he repeated the old adage. For my master, every moment was a teaching moment. I loved it.

Do you remember why we hold each other?” he asked as we skidded into another turn. Here the orange abruptly ended, and with it all the creatures that lived within its light.

It doubles our power,” I said like a dutiful student, proud as could be.

Yes,” he said with the faintest of smiles.

And now, we drew to a stop. Our feet were on a fine line, the smallest area of respite possible. It was the blissful dark, the area between one light’s conquered land and another’s. It was about a foot long. Before us was another triple choice. Yellow, red, and blue. Immediately within the blue’s corridor was another giant painting on the walls. This one was clearly already awake and thriving, throbbing with wet desire.

Master heaved a sigh. “We take blue,” he said firmly. It surprised me. Blue was master’s skill, his best color to fight. Why was he already choosing it? It was then I saw the slightest hint of worry creases around his eyes. The slightest furrow was visible in his brow.

But I was not worried. Flush with confidence in him I reminded myself of times I’d seen those worry creases on him before. We had survived, hadn’t we? It had been difficult, but it had been won. So when he stepped forward, I followed with head high and confidence.

The blue light was so pure it seemed white. The walls thrived like a bee’s nest, waves crashing alongside their inked supple lines- and the spirit jumped at us.

It was a whirling battle. I was lifted, dashed against a head, then tossed to land on its back with all claws out. Here, in this realm, cat claws tore the ethereal better than any dagger. With screaming howls the monster thrashed. Master sliced at its head, then its other head and other. I distracted like needles in the back, jumping and clawing- and very nearly being eaten by another head.

Jump! Shield!” Master ordered and I did without knowing why. In a leap I whirled into full shield form in the air. The head dashed against me so swiftly it almost entered through my transformation. But I had been fast enough and it smashed into my flat side. I was sent whirled- then was caught by strong hands.

Set on my two feet, I jumped for action- but was pulled forward by the shoulder. Glittering water lay around us, inked and drooling across the floor. “Hurry,” master snapped. We rushed on.

On and on we plunged. The blue swiftly faded from view, its doors not daring to attack us after defeating its living master. Slowly, as it died, the blue faded. The light now glowed from bulbs that blinked and watched- white and seemingly harmless.

Up and up we went up stairs that reminded me of apartment buildings in worlds gone by. We exited into a hallway that was once again lit by white- and master took my shoulder. Why did he want our powers doubled? I never had the chance to ask.

He lifted his sword in a deflection, and a spirit crashed against it. “They’re invisible!” he barked, and I saw with horror that he was true. A glimmer here- a gaunt shape there- I shielded with one foot on the ground just in time to save myself from a stab through the gut. The moment that blade crashed off me I saw another glimpse behind master’s back as he was parrying to the front. I leaped behind him to shield, shield, shield- that seemed to be all I could do. Dance and shield as invisible blows rained around us, one even dashing against my granite back and tingling up my spine. Then I was snatched up. “Run!” Master barked as he threw me before him. I landed on all fours and darted, too small to be caught. There was a slicing hiss of master cutting his way forward, and a corner rounded to me. Beyond was blissful darkness.

In a bolt and a leap that felt like three heartbeats of eternity, I was landing and skidding through pitch black. My heart pounded in my throat. Crashes and hissing of ‘alternative monsters ‘, or whatever they were called, resounded as they struck the darkness in pursuit and died. Master’s thick silver-plated boots stepped next to me. He crouched down next to me. Now his armor gleamed all over him.

Don’t ask me how he does that. The armor, much like the sword, was magic to my eyes. It was just there one minute and gone the next. He’d tried to explain it once, but I had groaned and buried my head in a pillow. He’d laughed and said “alright, it’s magic” just that once.

And just this once, he crouched down to scratch my head. “Well done,” he said softly. I purred loudly and rubbed against his hand, as content as could be. As I opened my eyes I saw his smile, his glowing blue eyes, and I couldn’t have been happier or more proud. He too, seemed so happy. Then he looked up to what was waiting before us.

Do you remember what happens if I let go of you during a transformation?” he asked softly, almost absent-mindedly while peering ahead.

I rolled my eyes and transformed into two-legged form. His hand slid from my head to rest on my shoulder. “I get sent home,” I said dully.

M-hm,” he said, making me wonder if he was even listening. I smiled, taking the moment as a chance to admire his features. His sharp nose. His full lips. Then I looked ahead to see what he saw.

To my eyes, there was nothing. Not even light. Just- an absence of darkness. One could see beyond, but it was as if by starlight I supposed. Or moonlight, that soft glow that illuminates but isn’t quite there. That’s what it was, but wasn’t quite. What it was, was our final goal.

Come,” he said as he straightened and strode forward. I followed, silent and (I hoped) lethal.

As we stepped into the non-visible light, it took a breath around us. The air rushed away from us, sucked into unseeable lungs- then was exhaled in a seething hiss.

God morning,” it cooed.

It’s night,” master said flatly, reaching to pick me up. I whirled int a shield, and was tossed before him. With a dash I crashed against someone’s head. A scream burst as I was snatched by claws and torn apart, my shield self being forced to dismember and reverse transform into limbs and then furry limbs that could slip through their grasp.

Shrieking, I landed on all four paws and, well, ‘regrouped’ to say it gracefully. I dashed between master’s legs and braced myself behind him. “What is this?” I asked over his shoulder as I braced with shields up- and winced at the pain. I could hardly shield now.

It’s it,” he said calmly.

Well, ‘it’, was slavering and shrieking softly, hissing and clambering over walls with nails scraping- a metallic thud could be heard. Then another. Was that it’s feet? I thought I saw a claw- but then I didn’t see it.

Do you remember what I said?” master asked so calmly.

About not letting go?” I asked nervously. Why was he bringing that up now?

Yes, good.” he said, and as I glanced over my shoulder I saw him looking back with the slightest of smiles. “Now come here. You’re wounded, aren’t you?”

Y-yes?” I said, stepping backwards then turning with my arms out. Between the stone creases there was blood. Our eyes met again. A silent understanding passed, a sort of recognition of our bond. “You’ve done well,” he said gently. Then, abruptly, “Shield!”

I leapt into the air, spinning to follow his eyes. A claw gouged against me, scraping against my surface and catching in the crack it had created. With a rip I was torn open, forcing to un-shield again.

Shield!” Master shouted, snatching me up from behind. Again I regrouped, again I was dashed against a head. A claw snagged around me rim and flipped me from his grasp and I twirled freely in the air- and was snatched up again. “Cat!”

I transformed just in time to see him leaping up into the air, sword striking- and his hand leaving me mid-way.

It is common knowledge that cats travel the easiest through the realms. No matter the wounds, no matter the distance, cats do it best. It was also common knowledge that no master would let their shields get seriously harmed. It was a pact between worlds that the shields would always be returned- even if that left the master to die alone.

With that thought in mind, I sat up in a bed with heart pounding. Master’s name was on my lips – but the world here would not recognize it. Around me was four plain walls, flat and adorned with posters. My bed was a mat that unrolled, a green comforter spread across my legs. A fluffy pillow had been under my head. The scent was sickeningly familiar. Home.

No, no, no,” I muttered as I took in my old room. “Why did you send me back?” Standing, I looked down at myself. I was wearing a checkered sleep shirt and baggy pants. The floor boards were cool under my bare feet as I stepped to my desk in search of some note.

It was filled with memorabilia that had once meant so much to me. Notes from the day before I was taken. ‘you can do this!’ a cheery cat waved at me from a large post-it I’d stuck on a board beside my lamp. Now, I didn’t care for them. What had my master done?

I sccrambled through my desk but found nothing. Jerked open drawers filled with old school assignments and found them layered with dust. Searched my pockets and found I had no pockets. Turning back to the bed I rummaged through it, shakign out the comforter and lifting the pillows- nothing.

Finally, I turned to the door. Gulping, I slowly walked to it. My breath drew short as I closed in on it. What would be on the other side? This whole world that I had once called home, still unchanged like the rest of this room? Or was master sitting downstairs with mother, calmly retelling our adventures to soothe her nerves? I paused, the very air feeling suspended as my fingertips brushed the door’s handle.

It opened on its own, revealing mother. Mother who had aged, grown almost ten years’ worth of wrinkles and grey hairs and a strained smile. “Darkling,” she said, and even her voice bore the strain of these years.

Mother,” I said, shocked and terrified by these changes in her. It made her seem stiff, awkward, and unwholesome. Then the words just blurted out of me. “Why am I here? Where is my master?”

Mother’s smile kept that stiffness. She hated speaking of the pacts. “You are home now,” she said softly.

Why? When am I going back? My time is not over!” I had another five years before master and I unbound and chose our ways! Then- then I was bringing him home! I had promised to show him our golden gates that mirrored his! We- we had so many plans!

But mother’s smile shattered all that. “You are home now. It’s over.”

My hand fell from the door’s handle. “He’s dead?” I heard myself saying.

Mother smiled and her eyes twinkled eerily. “You’re home, safe.”

Like any good master would do. The shield returns home, always.

I sat down on my bed and cried. Mother shut the door.

A Request for Help?

No, no, I don’t need your money! My problem is that I’m not really well organized, and lack the motivation to keep myself consistent. And, thanks to someone’s perky attention, I realized that, yeah, I let “Dreaming of Lights” fall to the wayside, along with other stories (Ranger, cough cough!).

So, while reading Olivia’s lovely encouraging comments, a thought struck me. I wanted to reach out to her about this, then, but decided I would make a blog post about it to give everyone a chance to participate.

You see, writing is a solitary thing, but I love the social aspect of sharing my story with y’all. That, I think, is why ‘My Name is Chaos’ has been so successful and actually gotten itself written! It’s because of my lovely readers who give me input and motivation!

So, does anyone out there feel like helping me out? I would need help editing ‘Dreaming of Lights’, as well as setting myself up realistic publishing goals and steps (like, do the book cover when for which book). If someone is trying to establish themselves as a writer, looking to build each other up through our social media and sharing of mutual skills, or just wants to pitch in to help, that’d be great! If you happen to know someone trustworthy too, feel free to pass the message along. 🙂 This would be a great opportunity for anyone trying to get their feet wet in the writing world.

I especially need people who are: understanding of mental health issues (as I can cave in to anxiety quite often!),patient, quite flexible, and would work well in a group (hopefully we’ll be more than two brainstorming this together!). Artists of all sort and fellow writers welcome!

So say you or someone is interested, what do you do next? Well, start by emailing me at mdaoust245@gmail.com with a list of what you are skilled at, and how you would like to pitch in (including how much time you’d like to devote to the project, as well as what you’d like in return [more social media visibility? Featured blog posts?]). If possible, I will then make us a facebook group to chat and pitch ideas around in. If that doesn’t work I will try… something else? I’m sure y’all will have fabulous ideas if facebook doesn’t work out 🙂

I’m really looking forward to your thoughts and ideas ❤

“Just More Chaos”; Chapter Ten, Part One

“You think this is funny?” I asked, theoretically, to the circle of vampires that were supervising me. They stared back, stone faced and dark and broody and, well, vampiric. I was annoyed and maybe hormonal. Maybe hurt. Maybe, just maybe, feeling like I’d been made an ass of.

“I mean,” I said to them. “It’s not like I just gave her the friggin’ world or anything. Put my ass on the line. Nearly got myself killed. Just for her. And how does she repay me?”

“Please shut up,” one vampire mumbled under their breath. I turned on her.

“You think I should shut up?” I snapped. “Well, how about-”

The door from the house opened. Bella stepped out, laughing with Aaliyah. Aaliyah, laughing? Ughhh. The stone had learned how to smile, just for Bella.

I wanted to scream and stomp my feet. All I managed was a disheartened “Ughhh,” as they walked over. I felt lame, clutching my stomach and whining. So I whined some more.

“You know,” I sneered. “You make a fitting pair.”

Bella and Aaliyah looked at me like I was a turd. Bella patted a vampire on the shoulder, taking her place within the circle to face me.

“Chaos,” she announced. “You will have to give Kuryo back his body. It’s rightfully his.”

“Yeah, sure!” I said. “But where is he now?” Wasn’t he now in hell with Lucifer and Charr or something? Come to think of it, what was Bella doing here instead of hell…

Bella tilted her head to the side with a nasty smile. Like she pitied me. “How would I know?”

I stomped my feet in the friggin’ snow that was turning to slush around me. “Because you traded him for me like kids in a candy store? No? Or do you have another story about that as well?”

Bella looked puzzled. “Chaos,” she said in a cautious tone, as if afraid of making me more angry. “I don’t know what you are talking about. No one sent you away. You did that yourself. I don’t know what you’ve been up to lately, especially after my guard killed you-”

My jaw hit the floor, again. What. The. Arghhhhhhhh.

“Hey!” I barked, stamping my feet. “Enough of that! Where is he? You’ve got to have him!”

Bella crossed her arms over her chest and looked sad. “Stop yelling,” she said with a sigh.

Aaliyah placed a hand on Bella’s shoulder, as if to protect her from me. Bella smiled sheepishly at her.

I gawked. How had Bella made Aaliyah like her so fast?

I tried to rein my temper in. “I don’t know where Kuryo is,” I hissed. “But I’m sure Charr knows where he is.”

Bella was puzzled. “Who?”

Oh, shit. In a sudden pang of regret, I realized that Bella had probably gotten rid of Charr and hidden Kuryo somewhere, like in a bottle on a shelf or something. And Charr had seemed to be the one who had held up best against Bella…

“A friend of Kuryo’s,” said Aaliyah. “She had come to try and find him.”

“Oh?” Bella smiled weakly. “What does she look like? Maybe we’ll find her. I can have the troops keep an eye out for her-”

“Don’t- you murdered her, didn’t you?” I hissed. “you -”

Bella gave me such a pitying look. “Chaos, please don’t say that sort of thing. You shouldn’t wish someone dead.”

A-a-a-AAAAAAA!!!! I ground a palm against my forehead, wishing there was something, anything, that I could do. But Charr was probably dead-

“Lookit,” Bella had straightened her shoulders and there was a bit of a glimmer of a leader to her again. “Just tell us what you know. If you tell us where he is, I will try and find another body to transfer you into. How about that?”

“No thanks!” I snapped. “By the way, I don’t know where he is! I’ve told you that!” I said that last part to Aaliyah, but she seemed nonplussed.

Bella scowled. “Chaos. If you don’t tell us, I’m going to have to stick you in a waiting room until you do. And then the troops might have to use some mind control tactics on you, to get you to talk. Do you really want that? Just tell us the truth.”

I shook a fist, wanting to strangle her. “I’m telling the truth! I-”

A ripple went through the air. A hiss, and my hair stood on end.

“you?” Bella said, but I was looking around.

“What was that?” I asked.

“What was what?” Bella was asking, but I felt it ripple again. It was a presence, sheer and powerful, and … Kuryo?

I turned, thinking that I must be going rabid. But then again, wasn’t I supposed to have Kuryo’s powers now? Maybe that meant I had a Kuryo-radar or something?

But no, that couldn’t be Kuryo. It was raw and angry – but then that feeling slipped away, to be immediately replaced with the feeling of Kuryo. Of his smile. Of his essence.

“You want Kuryo?” I asked peppily, suddenly feeling brash. I pointed off in the direction the feeling was coming from. “He’s that way.”

Bella’s jaw h it the floor. Aaliyah startled. Even the vampires looked shocked. Everyone took a minute looking left, (where I was pointing) and thinking.

“What do you mean?” Bella asked cautiously.

I pointed some more. “I can feel him. He’s that way. So do you want him or not?”

Looks were passed around. Aaliyah squared her shoulders and nodded at Bella.

The feeling of Kuryo-ness intensified. It was like a scent on the wind. Images of Kuryo were flitting through my mind, slowly and almost sensually. Gah. His scent wafted over me like a phantom presence.

Jade was fetched from the house, and some other vampires beside. Then, on skidoos, we left.

Well, what do you fuckin’ know? My newfound radar senses led us straight out into a valley, a certain place where me and Bella had once stood together. So, part of me was getting more and more angry as we approached, racing across the snow with the roaring of the engines in our ears. But as the familiar scenery flitted by, the images of Kuryo grew rapid-fire in my mind. I swore I could smell him, could hear him breathing as if he was right next to me.

He was close, I knew it. But then again, I didn’t have to tell anyone that, now did I?

Oh, why not? Because there was a giant fuckin’ green tree demon-thing smack in the middle of the field.

Bella drew us to a stop at the top of a hill’s crest. From here, we saw the ‘thing’.

It was about three stories high. It was shaped like a maple or birch tree, branches reaching high up into the sky. But unlike a normal tree, its trunk was thicker than it ought to be and was a vibrant, poisonous, green. Its roots seemed to be writing across the earth. Earth which was blackened and seared in what looked like an explosion mark.

“Bella, brilliant one, aren’t you supposed to notice when things like this land in your territory?” I sneered as we stepped off the skidoos.

But Bella was pale. She was staring at the thing and just standing there. In a flash I pitied her. Then I remembered that I hated her, so I decided not to pity her, or protect her whatsoever. There!

Aaliyah looked at Bella. “What is it?” she asked sharply.

“I, I don’t know,” Bella fairly babbled.

And, oh yeah, that’s when it struck me too. That this thing, whatever it was, wasn’t quite a tree demon. It was breathign in my mind, and I could feel Kuryo-ness radiating from it.

“Is that- him?” Jade asked cautiously. “Or does it have him?”

I shook my head, unable to tell the difference. “We’ll have to go closer.”

Bella rounded on me sharply. “How come you know that?” she snapped. “You,” and she sniffed the air again, looking me up and down. “You have no powers. How did you find this thing?”

I paused. No powers? But wasn’t I supposed to have taken in Kuryo’s powers? Or – could Bella simply not smell those?

Hmmm. I may have taken a minute too long to think that through. Bella looked ready to slap me. “Answer me!” she barked.

I startled, then came up with an idea. Tell the truth. Couldn’t hurt too much, right? “It’s talking in my head,” I said flatly. Close enough. “Kuryo’s that way.”

“What’s it saying?” Aaliyah asked.

I shrugged. “It’s more of an impression. A smell.”

“So you’re smelling Kuryo?” Bella asked. “Why don’t you just tell the truth, Chaos?”

I gawked. Bella continued. “You arrive, and this thing just happens to show up too? And you just happen to know where it is? Get real, I’m not an idiot!”

“Oh, really?” I asked snidely. “Fooled me.”

Yeah, I was smacked.

“Just More Chaos”; Chapter Nine Part One

I reappeared laying on my stomach with someone screaming over me. Remember that massive chest wound? Well I was laying straight on it. Gasp indeed. Ugh.

“Kuryo! Kuryo! Get over here – it’s him! He’s here!” some frantic female voice was shrieking. Hands grappled at my shoulders and I was flipped onto my back. A head was peering down at me, a halo of blonde hair falling around us. I was seeing stars from the pain and the vertigo of it all.

Footsteps thudded through the floor and another head appeared. This one was dark with dark hair. “Kuryo? What’s wrong? Where are you hurt?”

I shook my head, gasping. One palm pressed to the floor to try and stop the whirling mess, I managed to prop myself up on an elbow. A bad idea. I barfed.

I mean, not much came up besides blood and bile, which, yeah that made them freak. Amid squeaky curses, tissues were wrenched from a box and pressed against my face. I practically inhaled them (accidentally) before wiping my face with them. Then I took a look around.

I was smack in the middle of Kuryo and Charr’s apartment. Still dressed (always a good thing). But now there was a blonde woman about Charr’s age with stunning blue eyes and an amazing decollete peering at me. She was dressed in what looked like expensive sporty clothes and running shoes. The other woman (same age, differnet upbringing apparently) was wearing loose jeans and a baggy sweater that looked like something a poor person would wear. Both looked desperately at me, the blonde frantic, the dark woman more composed.

“I’m not kuryo,” I croaked out. There, I said it.

They just looked at me. Well, that was a brick in their system. I managed to sit up. Then, and only then, I wondered who the hell they were. Should I have told them that I wasn’t Kuryo?

The dark woman pressed a palm to my forehead. Then she sniffed the air and leaned over me. “You’re wounded,” she said sharply.

I nodded. “Yeah.”

Another awkward moment. “What do you mean, you’re not Kuryo?” asked the blonde awkardly. “You’re – do you not remember who you are?”

I looked them both in the eyes. First the blonde, then the dark one. Then back. “I accidentally took this body,” I said slowly. “My name is Chaos. I come from another dimension, where Kuryo – was summoned I guess? And he was eating me after I died when he got killed. So I kept his body and he – he died.”

Both women blanched.

I hurried along. “Charr was trying to get him back, but I can’t use his powers, I don’t know how, so she got the gods to summon him back and exchange me for him.”

They looked at each other, then at me. “Okay,” the dark haired one said firmly. The blonde nodded hesitantly.

I paused. “Okay?” I repeated. “Just okay?” Come to a second thought, why did they believe me? “Who are you two?” Was I right in telling them about this? Or was I falling into another Bella-esque trap?

They looked at me, nnon-plussed. Then they looked at each other. Then back at me. “You’re joking, right?” asked the blonde.

The brunette interrupted. “We’re friends. Of Kuryo. Good friends. We practically live here. Now -” she paused. “You’re not him.”

“Exactly!” I said, flustered and, might I say, in a certain amount of pain.

They looked at each other again. The brunette rose to her feet, gesturing for the other to follow her. “We need to talk. Excuse us,” and she fairly hauled the blonde away. Out the front door, and down the hallway of the apartment building kind of away.

I just sat on the floor and moped. Felt bad for myself. Felt terrible. Considered puking again out of pain.

I hoped that Charr was happy, that she had got her boyfriend back and that everything was savvy-happy. Everything was fine, I told myself, but I hardly believed it. Bella was going to find out that Charr had lied, and the cat would be caught, so to speak. Lucifer wouldn’t take happily to this and, probably, I’d be shipped back. It was just a matter of time.

Speaking of time → those two were taking their dear sweet time, wherever they had gone off to. It felt like they were gone for hours. Literally, it may have been half an hour I was sitting there, moping and wondering what I could do, or even should do. But I kept thinking that there was nothing that I could do, and had no idea what a heroic version of myself should do. I’d screwed up, and I’d screwed up badly. In a short span I’d helped Bella overthrow the status quo of the sky realm and unleash hellish minions on earth. Way to go, Chaos. Now what? Screw with this realm as well?

I lay on the floor and just felt bad for myself. I closed my eyes, and may have dozed off.

“Get up!” It was the brunette. She was offering me a hand. The pool of sick beside me was gone and there was a scent of cleaner in the air. I refused the hand and just didn’t move.

“What for?” I asked lamely. Self-pity had engulfed all my desires, including the one to move. I was just going to lay here and live out of the fridge, how about that?

The hand was offered again. “My name is Aaliyah. This is Jade. We’re going to help you get home. How does that sound?”

“You want to rescue Kuryo,” I said flatly, knowing that this was hardly about me. I flipped a hand at them. “Go do that. I’ll stay here.”

The hand was offered a third time. “We need you. You’re our contact to the other realm. You’ve got to help us. How else are we supposed to get there?”

I scoffed. “Me? I’m wounded. Get your own lapdog, I’m sick of helping people.” Look where it had gotten me.

“You’re wounded?” Aaliyah reached behind the nearby cupboard and drew out a baseball bat. “Want to try that again?”

I took one look at the bat, then another at the blonde. She was serious. So was Aaliyah, apparently, because she was starting to aim for my ribs with a very calculated look on her face.

“Wait!” I scrambled up and Owww! Fell back down. “You don’t want to hurt his body, do you?”

“You’re in it,” she said nastily. “I just won’t hit your face.”

Up on my knees now, I was gasping for air. I held up both hands. “I don’t know how to help you. Look I – my dimension is in a mess and it’s all my fault. I don’t know how to get you back there or him back here – look they’ll probably figure out he’s not me and that Charr was lying and send him back here soon enough, okay?”

“Charr is there?” Jade asked sharply. “They’re together?”

I nodded. Aaliyah frowned. Another meaningful look was passed between these two. What, were they telepathic?

I sighed. “We should just wait.”

“No,” said Aaliyah. “We’re not letting him do this alone. Not again. Come on,” and she nodded to Jade. “Help me.” and she reached down to haul me up. Jade instantly pitched in, and I was on my feet (in a lot of pain!).

The two of them set me on the couch and began clearing off the coffee table. “Now what?” I scoffed. “What are you doing?”

Aaliyah ignored me, but Jade threw a look my way. “Fixing things,” she said as she threw a pile of papers into a wastepaper basket.

“Magic,” said Aaliyah as she wiped the table down with a sleeve. “Just stay out of it.”

Magic! As if that would fix anything.

“My Name is Chaos 2”; Chapter Two, Part One

Oh, okay. I looked around again. This was definitely a bedroom. An adult bedroom, by the looks of it. There was just the bed, dresser drawers, and some paraphnelia and gadgets and piles of clothes – but nothing else. With a second glance, I realized the woman wasn’t that old. About my age, maybe a year older?

Okay, okay. I propped myself up on an elbow carefully. Time to get out of here. Where the fuck was I anyways?

I brushed the blankets off of me, swept my legs out of bed – and she stirred.

She mumbled something, flinging an arm out. I dodged it and rose to my feet. Okay, I was safe?

Sniff sniff. I swear, she sniffed the air. I turned just in time to see her bolt up, eyes flaring wide open.

She was medium height and relatively average build for a woman. She had black hair that was cut in a plain bob. Nothing exceptional except for her large, green, cat-like eyes and cat-like face..

But uh, something had to be exceptional about her, because she didn’t start screaming at the sight of me, just out of her bed. “Goryeo?” she called, or something like that.

Shit, servants? I looked at the bedroom door, but no one came. She called again. Then, looking around, she asked “Who are you? Where’s Goryeo?” and she looked around again.

“I- I’m leaving,” and I marched around the bed to get to the door.

She snatched my arm in a vice grip, yanking me to a stop. She shouted that g- something again. But there was no answer.

On her feet now (and dressed in light blue fluffy pj’s) she was at my side. “Who are you?” she demanded, glaring into my eyes. I tried to shake her off, but her grip wouldn’t go, and now she was between me and the door.

“I’m leaving!” I enunciated in her face. “Get out of my way!”

She got up in my face, as if we were taking turns yelling. “Who? Are you? Where’s? My boyfriend?”

and she held up a fist between us menacingly. Cute.

I pushed her fist away. “Don’t make me fight you. Now get the fuck out of my way. Now.”

Wham. That was one punch to the stomach that I didn’t see coming. It was perfectly aimed, knocking the breath right out of me in a most painful way.

Gasping for air, I was yanked up into her face by the shoudler.

“Don’t make me ask again,” she hissed, eyes wide and rabid. “Who are you?”

“Chaos,” I gasped as I got some air back into me. “I’m Chaos.”

“Who sent you?!” she barked, and I got the impression that she was used to this. A trained fighter? Just my fucking luck.

“Bella,” I wheezed as I could finally breathe. “I was just sent here. I’ve done nothing! I was- just sent okay?”

“By who?” she fairly yelled into my face.

“Bella!” I snapped back, shaking my shoulder to try and get free. It was pointless. She held me, eyes flaring.

“Who?” she asked, obviously clueless.

“Bella!” I repeated. “Vampire landlady? Hellion raiser? No?”

She let me go. “Have you seen Goryeo?” again with that name!

“I don’t even know what that is!” I snapped, rubbing my shoulder and wincing as I rolled it out.

She snatched up a picture from the bedside and held it up to me. “Him! My boyfriend!”

Aww, crap. It was one of those cute couple selfie pictures where their heads were together and they were smiling like idiots. And yep, it was Bella’s new lackey, looking so happy next to this woman.

“Oh,” I said flatly.

She lowered the picture. “Where is he?”

I gulped. “I uh- he’s the one who sent me here? He’s with Bella.”

“Who is this? Where is she?”

I rubbed my nose awkwardly. “Uh, they’re probably sleeping together, you know. Just so you know.”

She looked absolutely unfazed, like I’d said ‘they’re probably breathing air’. She even tilted her head to the side like i’d said something extra dumb. She pointed again to the picture. “Where is he?”

“Canada, Quebec, definitely not Nunavut – look it’s the vampire place, okay? You won’t be able to just waltz right in and -” I paused, catching a glimpse of the window. Of the open window. It had flimsy curtains over it, but there was a warm breeze coming through it, along with sunlight. “Where am I?” I asked. “Hawaii?”

“Ha- what?” her eyes narrowed. “Which world are you from?”

I just ogled her on that one. “The god realm,” I said slowly. “But isn’t this the incarnate plane?”

She just stared at me. “You’re a spirit?”

I put on a cheezy grin. “Yeah I-”

“Then what the fuck are you doing here?”

“I was sent here! By-” I gestured to the picture. “Him.”

She wrapped her arms protectively around the picture, frowning. Then, as if second guessing her thoughts, she set the picture back down on the handtable. “We need to talk,” she said flatly. “Do you drink tea?”

“Ech,” I grumbled. What was it with people and leaf-water? “No.”

She gave me a nonplussed look. “Coffee then?”

I nodded.


The apartment was ridiculously tiny, but cute. Cozy, even. Just in case you didn’t know who lived here, there were pictures of the couple up on the wall in a multi-picture frame, along with some other people.

“That’s our cube’s pictures,” she said as she set a steaming mug of freshly brewed coffee on the dinky little wooden table. She set a cup of tea for herself, then sat on one side of the table. She gestured at the other chair. “Sit. I’m Charr, by the way.”

“Chaos,” I muttered as I sat. She hadn’t asked me what I wanted in my coffee, and it was black. Meh.

I was expecting a moment of silence. But she just sipped her tea, set it down, and started. “Where are you from? Tell me everything.”

“I told you-”

But she cut me off. “Your world. What’s happening there? You say Goryeo sent you. Was it far, when he sent you? Did you,” she hesitated “cross dimensions?”

I just blinked. How did she know about that? Unless – “Does he do this often?”

“Shit,” she muttered, pressing fingertips to her forehead. Then, to me she said “no, but he’s a natural wielder – he can travel and send people and control energy and souls.”

No shit. I tried not to look impressed, but being quite secretly jealous. Bella had leveled up after me, I guess. “And you?” I asked.

She was nonplussed. “I was a shield for the academy,” at the blankness in my expression she added “a bodyguard of sorts, you could say. Magical bodyguard.”

“Cool,” I nodded, trying not to be impressed. I felt kind of lame next to these two for some reason. I was, uh, screw-up extraordinaire?

“Tell me more,” she said. “Who is this – Bella? Person?”

So I told her. I went into a long schpiel about how there had been a vampire uprising that I’d been sent to deal with, that I switched sides to help Bella, and uh, well, I glossed over a bunch of points. Mainly that I’d fallen for her, and that, you know, she’d used me like a tissue. Or a shooting target. Something of the sort.

I finished with summarizing that I’d been captured by the army, sent to Bella, who then sent me here.

Charr made a frownie face, like she was really thinking this through. “Is it me or you’re getting sent around a lot?”

I nodded. “Yeah, you could say that.”

“Dreaming of Lights”; Chapter Two, Part One

Now, for everyone who’s been following along  -> this chapter is from another characters’ POV, in another world. It has seemingly nothing to do with Kuryo’s world. It is a little bizarre, but hey, it’s based off a bizarre dream I had, haha.

Thank you so much for reading and following this story! Let me know what you think 🙂



The party was a strange, cheap, cocktail mix of drunk partiers and alchohol on the grass. Everyone was dressed extravagantly, laying their chips out on their arms. What did these souls want? One man in a brilliant red boa dress gestured at me. He wanted something. What, I wasn’t sure. I avoided him and circled towards a group of drummers. They were sitting on the grass – not a wise decision- but they were happy. They didn’t mind as I sat with them and plucked at the greasy green strands around my feet.

Drink-less, I was waiting. It took some time.

I wandered, leaving the cheer and not quite rhythm of the drummers for a pool table. Here, the balls floated and everyone wanted to take shots at the white ball. Things were that strange half-reality that I had come to be used to. That was this world. Home, at least for now. Some day, as I dragged a finger along the edge of the table to collect dust, some day, I would bring my master to my home. He would then see what I meant when I spoke of half realities. The slight keel to the side that this world seemed to possess. The way red boa men would keep appearing. The way their costumes were perfectly reasonable amongst this strange cheer of cat-callers.

A man in a black cat costume was mocking me for wearing exactly the same thing as he, but his words turned into a cawing drawl like all these languages sounded like to my ears. Behind him, a moving figure caught my eye. As our eyes connected the world seemed to stop.

As if in slow motion I took the figure in breathlessly. Black hakama pants, a white shirt that suited, with red cherry blossoms descending the sleeves in an artistic detail too expensive for a costume. The rich quality of these clothes were offset by the cheap white powder that coated the face, by the cheap afro wig that covered the hair. But there was nothing that could hide those electric blue eyes. No, what distracted the common person from them was the black geisha lips.

In my world, a man wearing painted lips would be strange. But here, no one thought the painted geisha face on a man – a handsome one no less- was strange at all. Not even the afro seemed to be thought of as weird.

Smiling, I left the pool table. The man turned and walked away, the gait fluid, his hips rolling in that particular walk that experienced fighters of his caliber had. I had learned to recognize it by much trial and error. Now, there was nothing else that I judged a person by.

It was by following him that I slipped into the thick of the party. That I finally ventured to the back, to the mass of pounding bodies jumping and writhing in time to music – and the house slid into view.

Yesterday when we had been preparing ourselves my master had told me not to look at it before he arrived.

It’ll discourage you,” he had said while lining my eyes carefully with kohl. I had sat patiently, eager for the attention. He had stepped back, taking in his work on me in with narrowed eyes. I loved the way he held that brush just then. So delicately. So expertly. Then, tapping me on the shoulder in that way he had to draw my attention back to serious details, he said “you don’t want to be discouraged for this.”

That’s how I knew this cleansing would be difficult.

As we broke through the crowd the house came into full view. It was a monster of a thing. Three stories, a massive front porch with giant pillars supporting it in what I would later tell master was ‘greek style!’ and educate him on what greek was in my world- later. For now, the house was large. Tyrannically white. Ominous, the porch like a mouth with windowed heartless eyes above it. Soon, it may clamp shut on the partygoers and digest them.

‘Hardly,’ master would have said with narrowed eyes if I’d said that out loud. But to me, that’s what it was. These ethereal, these strange, these… unwordable things that he was now sent out to battle. They were difficult, only a high-ranking prince of his fighting skills and birth-bought lineage could be sent to battle them. Of course, this sort of mission ought to be done in utmost secrecy otherwise – well, if anyone saw his hair they would panic and guess at what was happening – but worse, the house’s inhabitants would flee and would have to be caught elsewhere. And was it me, or was every new appearance subtler? More cruel and demonic? More and more lives seemed at stake with every battle.

I purposefully stopped myself from thinking that this was another video game.

Those things don’t exist here- and I was rudely drawn back into the reality of this world by the doorman stopping me with an arm out.

I said, ID,” he barked at me, cat ears waggling dorkily. They were all the fashion for men here, weren’t they?

I bit my lip, looking at this massive wall of a man before me. Tiny, tiny, and frail-looking me. Master promptly turned around, afro sliding slightly askew as he did. Luckily, none of his hair showed. “She’s with me. My plus one,” and he reached over the beefy arm and caught my shoulder somewhat roughly.

Oh, I understand,” and the beefy man smiled. He even had cat-like dots on his nose and fake whiskers drawn on. How ridiculous!

But then the arm lowered and I, staring still at the man, was hauled forward by master.

What are you doing?” he whispered. “How did that happen?”

He was right. I should have used my skills. But, all these cat things were dragging my attention away! “Why are there so many cats-”

He turned around, hands on both my shoulders now. Those electric eyes held me captive. Their faint glow illuminated his face slightly, and it made me breathless. He lifted a hand from my shoulder- and flicked me hard on the middle of my forehead. It stung, but it definetely reset my attention in an ethereal way. Wincing and making a face I rubbed my forehead then my nose. My power felt all mangled now-

Charr, I need you to focus. This isn’t some game. Forget about them, they’re not real cats.”

Because cats only exist in my world. That was why I had been summoned here. To replace them. Gulping, I nodded and stopped rubbing my nose. “I understand,” I said weakly.

Good,” he said gently. His hand left my shoulders. “Are you ready?”

I nodded, and the world seemed to reset. It slid into action. A group of drunk party girls passed by, cheering and whirling in a spinning type of dance as they held their drinks aloft. They looped arms around my master, trying to drag him into their drinking game. He pushed them away gently and they cursed at him.

I noticed one girl in the back was wearing a plain black square as a costume, the box hanging from her chest like a sign. She was laughing too, but it seemed strange. She held no drink in her hand.

Come,” master said sharply and he took my shoulder. We walked further into the house. The corridor was a deep red at first, light glowing down from bulbs set in the ceiling that were normal for both worlds. The only strange colors were the colored glow sticks that were strung about like streamers.

At the end of the hallway was darkness, then a turn to the left. Here, the ethereal began.

“My Name is Chaos 2”; Chapter One, Part Two

“You don’t look so hot,” said one of the team members as she sat down next to me. I was sitting on the three steps that led into the barracks, and badly wanted a cigarette. What? Think death sticks aren’t available in hell?

“I’m cold,” I snapped, though it absolutely wasn’t the case. We’d just finished doing the days’ push-ups and running around, but I just wanted to sit and think. Alone. Which, pointedly, was not happening.

“Really? It’s not that cold today,” she said, looking around at the snow piles around the barracks. Grouchily, I had to admit that it was no longer ‘freeze in your nostrils cold’, being merely ‘freeze the toes off’ cold. Friggin’ weather.

“It was sarcastic,” I grumbled. “I’m just-” and I shrugged.

“Oh,” she said as if that was a shocker. What? Did they all think that I had a resting grouch face?

Then, to my shock, she put an arm around my shoulder. “Chipper up! It’ going to work out! What’s the problem?” and she gave me a tight squeeze.

I glared at her. Hugs were just not a thing in hell → unless you were Lucifer. But were those hugs nice? No. But she didn’t get the hint. So I heaved a sigh. “I want to go home,” I grumbled lamely, because I wasn’t sure how to explain the giant mess I was in. My girlfriend was a psycho, I’d betrayed my family, and I was trapped by the military. By FoxFace in particular.

“Oh,” and she gave me another squeeze/rattle that was supposed to be comforting. “We all do, you know. But if we don’t do this, there won ‘t be a home for anyone, you know?”

I grumbled and didn’t want to listen. Sure, whatever. Poor humans pity poo poo. I wanted my mess to be over with. At least they didn’t have to deal with all the stuff that was happening to me.

She had a genuine smile on when I glanced at her. “It can’t be that different for you,” she was saying. “Is it?”

Girl, you have NO IDEA, I wanted to yell. But something clicked in my head. Bella did want to destroy the Pure Lands. I did have to do this to take care of those Buddhas and that lovely place.

So I squared my shoulders, mustered myself together. I could mope about my seeming eternity of servitude later. Right now, I had a girlfriend to save, and the Pure Lands to keep pure. A lot of stuff to do, really!

And hey, something would probably go screwy in FoxFace’s plans regarding me. That’s just the way things seemed to be going.

So I smiled at my war-buddy. “You’re right,” I said cheerfully.

I mean shit, things couldn’t get much worse, could they?


They day we were set to captured Bella, you could feel it in the air that something was brewing. Did Bella know? Was she waiting for us with bated breath? I could imagine her, standing there with a hand on her hip and that leash in hand, just waiting for me to show up.

Of course it was a stupid vision. Bella wouldn’t stand that long if she could sit and be regal. And what would she do with the leash? Whip me? Come on, Chaos.

But still, as we all geared up I was nervous. This was Bella we were talking about! My girlfriend – and then, only then, as I was putting on a chest-piece of bullet proof armor, did I think that hey, maybe she didn’t think of us as a thing anymore.

I almost dropped the armor.

Rattling myself mentally, I went back to putting all this crap on. A fellow soldier checked me over, we all nodded at each other, and we were ready.

My heart was hammering in my throat as we entered the lab in single file, all decked out in our gear and with vizors on. I just had the feeling that something was about to go terribly wrong. Like, really, really, wrong.

As we lined up in the room with blinding lights I realized I’d forgotten to roll my new dice. Great, Chaos. Good job, dumbass.

One by one, we were given a pill.

“It’s new!” Leo was saying happily. “The pill should reduce the nausea effects and allow us for greater precision as to your transport!”

We all swallowed dutifully. Then, “Good luck,” said Leo as he flicked a switch that was attached to his tablet. The room lurched.

How the hell that tablet worked was beyond me. But the next thing I knew I was zooming through the void, and reapparating – in a living room.

“Jesus on a fucking stick,” I cursed as I spun and recognized Bella’s living room – and the dozen or so rifles pointed directly at me. Held by vampires, of course.

Look to the left- look to the right – I didn’t need to look fucking up and down to see my team was nowhere to be seen. I held my hands out. “Good job,” I congratulated both Bella and Leo under my breath.

A high pitched laugh rewarded me. Bella was at the opposite end of the living room, directly behind the line of her cronies. Safe, as usual.

“Choas, so nice of you to drop by,” she said callously. Then she burst out in laughter.

I didn’t know what to do. So I just stood there, hands out and wondering how this had gone so, so, utterly bad.

“I don’t think your new boss understands how magic works,” Bella drawled as she stepped forward. Then, with a gleeful grin from Bella, I felt a ripple through the room. She had sent a silent message.

In that split second, I could have zapped myself away with FoxFace’s sigil. But something stopped me. Bella was right there! So close!

I wanted to stay with her.

And so I was thudded full like a pincushion full of flying needles. One or two jammed in my throat, the rest (courtesy of the vampire’s poor aim) landing in my armor.

The room swerved and the floor smacked up the meet me. But hey, this time I was padded with armor and a helmet so it didn’t really hurt. But right before the darkness took over, I noticed something.

Through the mass of vampires, there was someone standing beside Bella. Someone who was tethered to her via leash. They had deep blue hair.


I came to feeling pissed off. Angry and hurt in a terrible way. Of course I remembered why the instant I opened my eyes: the problem was right there. Bella, with a new slave at her side.

Yeah, he was older than me by a fuckin’ year or two, had a pretty face, was paler than me by two shades, and had a lovely tilt to his large eyes. Probably from some east asian pantheon or something.

Oh yeah, and What the Hell? He was wearing a collar just like I used to, complete with the little bottle of blood on it. He was even wearing black, like me!

I wanted to bust his face in. He looked bored. Like he couldn’t give a crap about where he was, or what was happening. How dare he?

I, on the other hand, must have been turning all the shades of purple and pissed off. I was strapped down (Again?!) to some sort of table. This must be the laboratory in their center, because the room felt, looked, and smelt clinical.

“Hey Chaos,” Bella cooed. I melted as she stepped forward to stand by my side. Her fingers trailed down my cheek to cup my chin. Then her nails dug in. I winced, but really, I didn’t totally mind the pain. It was the look in her eye that bothered me. She looked sad, miserable even.

“You could have stayed away, you know,” she whispered.

“They sent me,” I whispered hoarsely. “I have no choice.” And she knew that!

Bella smiled softly. It broke my heart, and I was sure hers was breaking too. “I love you,” she whispered before stooping over me.

We kissed. At my side, her fingers caressed down my hand and our fingers laced together.

For an idiotic flutter of a moment, I thought everything was going to be okay. We were together now, right?

Abso-fucking-lutely wrong.

Bella drew back with a satisfied smile to her lips. “Send her away,” she said, the order not intended for me at all.

The other one, the me-replacement, stepped forward. I gave him a dirty look but he didn’t look likehe cared two bits. He just stepped to my side, then turned to Bella who was walking away. “Where to?” he asked, and damn! He even had a nice voice. Fucking not fair.

Bella whirled towards him. “Where you came from, you idiot! Do I have to tell you everything twice? Just do it!”

Version 2.0 tilted their head to the side in acceptance. They lifted their arms above me, then closed their eyes.

I was expecting a spell. Fireworks and impressive displays. I was hoping for failure of the most spectacular kind, though. For their magic to not match up to mine.

Instead, I felt my very soul being seized in a firm grip. Then, with a jolt, I was catapulted through space.

Like, really! It was full-out trippy and better yet worse than any traveling I’d ever done through a portal. I was whole, but whizzing through galaxies and dimensions and I felt immortal and timeless and –

Wham. I landed in a soft fluff.

My eyes opened and there was a ceiling. I was in a bed. And beside me, laying serenely in pillows and blankets with a small smile on, was a woman.

“Dreaming of Lights”; Chapter One, Part Four

Turning around on the ledge, I looked into the void.

Behold, a poet would have said, the void looked back.

Well if the void looking back was a thing, it went ‘Boo!’ at me. Because right then, as I was turning around, the wind buffeted me and I saw, far far beneath me, my Aaliyah whacking away at three sprites that were surrounding her. Worse! There was a ring of spirit creatures, our classmates, around her and watching.

My blood boiled. How dare they make fun of Aaliyah! How dare they leave her helpless against three sprites!

I lunged from my perch, my thoughts full of rage and no such thing as common sense. Careening, I sped on recklessly as fast as I could.

It was about halfway there that I realized they were cheering her on. Aaliyah whacked out one sprite, then another, and the third cowered in fear. More cheers. Aaliyah was flush with victory, and our classmates were pounding the earth in support of her.

It was her glorious moment and I, shooting through the sky like a fluffball of idiocy, realized I was about to make a joke out of it by ‘rushing to her rescue’.

Cursing loudly in my head I tried to slow down. It was the worst pilates class ever. Clench those buttcheeks! Flap the wings – oh not that way!

I found myself cartwheeling, flapping, and, I’ll admit it, shrieking my lungs out as the world spun and the earth came closer.

For a horrid blink all I saw was Aaliyah zooming up to me, spinning with the earth – and then something green flashed over me.

Snap! Giant teeth caught me and I was squished by a soft tongue – then unceremoniously spat on the ground. A giant set of claws pinned me to the earth and a snarling jade snout shoved into my face, complete with golden mane and horns.

I froze. My heart pounded in my chest. Jade. Jade dragon, my classmate. Oh, how embarrassing.

Looking left, I saw a horde of creatures staring me down in dismay. Looking right I saw more classmates – and Aaliyah’s shoes.

What is it?” Aaliyah’s voice asked. A stick prodded towards me.

It’s me!” I tried to squawk, twisting and flapping.

Is it dangerous?” my classmates murmured.

It’s looking right at you,” the jade dragon said to Aaliyah.

Of course! Because – “It’s me!” I shrieked, willing myself back to humanoid form – and that did it.

With a crackle of magic over my limbs I was suddenly human again. The giant paw snatched off of me in surprise and I scrambled to my feet. “Aaliyah!” I gasped, grabbing at her arm. “It’s me!”

To my horror, she recoiled. Everyone took a jump back. Terrified that I hadn’t de-bloomed properly (or whatever you call it), I looked down at myself and patted myself. I looked fine. I was clothed (yeah!). “What?” I looked up, then around.

The jade dragon shimmered, then turned into the slender and graceful girl she was. Tall of legs, beautiful and icy, she glared at me. “You bloomed,” she said coldly, as if it was a capital crime.

I looked down at myself, then back at Aaliyah. She looked shocked as well, but in a good way. “You bloomed!” she said, reaching out to tentatively pat me on the shoulder. “Congratulations!” And then she drew me in for a hug.

If the day could have ended there, it would have been blissful. For that moment I was in Aaliyah’s arms, pressed against her chest. I felt her heart beating against mine. We were surrounded by a ring of students who, sure, were looking on. But they weren’t being rude or cruel. I even assumed they were admiring.

Then, yeah, reality struck. Aaliyah drew back. I stepped back as well, not wanting to be the creeper who clung to her. “So – you bloomed?” she asked.

I looked down at myself again. But before I even got the chance to say something, the jade dragon laughed. “Into a crow. God, what a useless thing. Carrion,” and she snorted. Then, gagging, she waved a hand at her mouth. “Ugh,” she made a face as if tasting something disgusting. “I tasted dirt.”

I wanted to punch her. Aaliyah stood bravely beside me – but the other students laughed. The jade dragon turned away and dissolved into her slender and oh so elegant friend group. The other students, guilty of having laughed and not wanting to associate with us much longer, turned away.

With a sigh I turned to Aaliyah, about to give her my usual speech. “Ignore them,” I began before she held up a hand.

You’ve got to tell the teachers,” she said, her eyes unreadable. Wait- was she sad? “This is going to change everything.”

My stomach fell out. No.

But yes. In a rush of breathlessness, it struck me. I bloomed. I could go on hunts now. I could easily get into the universities with my marks without having to plead that I was an exceptional case. Better yet – I could get a job.

I was no longer just like Aaliyah.

It was a realization that took on its own presence as I sat in Mister Murney’s office, then in the nurse’s office. It clung to me like a wet sweater, crushing me into myself. After hearing the words ‘exceptional’ and ‘how did you do it’ over a thousand times, I was finally walking home with Aaliyah.

Then, again, “How did you do it?” Aaliyah looked at me in wonder.

I shook my head. “I just – it happened.” And that was all. I wasn’t stupid enough to tell anyone what had happened. Who ever heard of eating a spirit? Of, of, infusing it up through your arms? That was crazy talk. So I just kept shaking my head. Shamefully, I told Aaliyah what I told all the others. “I was getting attacked by a sprite. I tried to move back, and I tripped and fell weirdly – and I was a bird.” I looked down at my shoes. “And that’s it.”

Oh,” was all Aaliyah said, softly. She too looked down at her shoes. And that, was that.

We walked in utter silence after that. We parted ways with a wave and a lame “see you tomorrow” that we echoed back at each other. Then, I walked home.

“Dreaming of Lights”; Chapter One, Part Three

I cawed for help. I shrieked. I flapped and flapped and wiggled my butt in the hopes of getting those feathers to do their job. Ingloriously, it made me think of pilates. Clench the buttcheeks! Wave the arms! Automatically, my legs paddled the air as well, and I must have looked like an idiot trying to run through the air.
Careening through the air, climbing up with no hopes of getting down, I found myself looping towards a tower.
Now, I want to take a minute to say that this tower wasn’t painted in brilliant orange with ‘forbidden tower’ scrawled over it. It just – no one went there is all.
It also just so happened to have a gridded balcony, sort of like a safety ramp, all around the top. I aimed for that, figuring I could sit up here until I got help.
With a zoom I careened towards the tower. A side draft of wind nearly bashed me into the tower, and I didn’t so much land as I flew to the floor and stuck my legs out and began to walk. Skittering to a stop, I slammed sideways against the tower’s wall.
Okay, I told myself. Okay. Ouch.
The wind whipped at me and I suddenly seemed to realize just how far I’d climbed. High, in short. Nauseatingly high. And this balcony? Not quite a balcony. More like a thin walkway that you could see through. Very thin.
I mean, it certainly was, what, five crows wide, but to me right then it was like a tightrope. I squished myself up against the wall and felt my heart pound in my throat.
Then I heard laughter. “Very well!” a man cheered.
I nearly jumped out of my skin. Whoa? Someone was here? Where? I looked all around before I realized that the voices were coming from within the building.
Help! I thought. Someone help me!
Feeling like every step was a gargantuan task, I began creeping forward, digging my fingers/claws in through the holes of the grid. Looking up, I crept my way around the corner. There, I poked my head around and up – and saw in through a large window.
Inside, from my bizarrely low angle, I saw Mister Murney and several other men I didn’t recognize. They looked like parents. Filthy rich too. They were pale like glass, wearing crisp white clothes like you saw in the magazines, and were lounging on a sofa. They were all in a sloppy ring, and at the center was someone, who was bowing to each person in turn.

Thank you for summoning me,” the person said in a feminine voice. As they straightened, shudders slid down my spine and all my feathers poked up.
The woman had slick black hair that fell into her face. Her eyes were a brilliant orange. Her features were strange. I couldn’t place her lineage by sight, which was strange. For though she had pale skin paler than I had ever seen, her features weren’t wealthy. There was something familiar to her, like she could have come from my own family. Her suit was an impeccable black and tailored to flatter her in every aspect, but it shimmered and sparkled with sequins like an evening dress. Oh, and she was wearing a little black bowtie.

We expect you to do exactly as we say,” one blonde man was saying.
The woman laughed, a strange and high-pitched cackle. She flipped a hand up and rolled her eyes to the sky. “Of cou-urse!” she laughed. “I just can’t tell you all how excited I am to be here! It’s an opportunity I’ve been waiting for-“
The men interrupted her. Typical. “We have arranged everything. You will be set to work straightaways. And,” this man, whom I could not see, added emphasis to his words. “We expect results.”
Again, that twittering laugh. She planted a hand on her hip and swung a hip out, looking down to her left at where the man must have been seated. “Don’t worry about that! I am the ah, result-maker?” She laughed at her own bad pun.
The men were not amused. Sure, they were smiling, but it was as if they weren’t seeing her. They were seeing beyond, imagining the results they so spoke of.

So!” the lady clapped her hands together twice and up high with a flourish. “Let’s do this!”
There was scuffles of chairs being scraped back. The woman began, in quiet tones that were still so nasally high-pitched, speaking to one member. I saw her place her hand on his shoulder as they walked away.
A door creaked open, and footsteps led away. I held my breath and counted to four. The business meeting was over – and now I just had to go through the window and follow them. Well! With a flap and a hop I propelled myself up to the window.
I smashed unceremoniously into the glass. Green shimmers marked it as being marked with a barrier. No souls could pass through.
With a flop I landed on the grid-like landing. My mind careened, not just in pain. This room was magically locked? How was anyone supposed to get out in case of an emergency? I thought all buildings, per protocol, had to be magically transparent to allow safe evacuations. Maybe that’s why no one came up to this tower. It wasn’t safe!
Curious and just wanting to get a look at what was surely a forbidden area, I hopped up onto the ledge. Inside, there was a dusty room, a dusty coffee table, and a few leather chairs from a few decades ago. I blinked, not even seeing a file folder or trace of the meeting.
Then, fleetingly, it struck me that this was a strange place to hold a parent-teacher meeting, or whatever kind of meeting it was. In an unsafe room, at the top of an unused tower, and in uncomfortable chairs.
Weird, but I had a bigger predicament facing me.

“Dreaming of Lights” ~ Introduction

“Dreaming of Lights” is a story that requires introduction, in my mind.  Just like “My Name is Chaos”, “Dreaming of Lights” is inspired by dreams, several of them, that I mashed together in a strange way. I tried to make sense of captivating confusion, if you will. That being said, there is some things to point out.

Kuryo, the main character, is a name that came to me in one of these dreams. I searched on the all-knowing internet, and it’s basically ‘Goryeo’ (that’s how it should be pronounced too), which is the old name for feudal Korea. If I’m wrong, someone fact-check me with sources, but that’s what I found. So yes, Kuryo is probably ethnically Korean in the story (which is in another world with unnamed continents because it doesn’t matter to the story). But for all of you who are like ‘wait, in the first chapter Kuryo refers to themselves as being ‘dirt colored” – but Koreans are pale?!

Uh, skin whitening creams are a big deal in that part of the world (and many other ‘Asian’ countries as well), and pop stars are really no reference. There are dark-skinned Asians, but you probably won’t be seeing them on TV due to internalized racism and ‘white-washing’.

Speaking of racism, I did try and keep racist slurs and junk like that out of this story, but I felt it was important for Kuryo to reflect a bit of internalized racism, as they would have been exposed to so much of it, and the class structure of the story is kind of important, at least to me.

You will also notice that I keep referring to Kuryo (one of the two main characters) as ‘they’. That’s because of the characters’ gender is … particular throughout the story and I find it simpler and spoiler-free to say ‘they’.

So what else do you need to know before reading about “Dreaming of Lights”? Well, it’s my little brain baby. It’s a story I whipped up within a year (all 100,00+ words of it!) and churned out with quite some intensity. It fascinated me. I love it, and sincerely hope you will too.

As I mentioned, I have my whole rough draft all written down. Now I need to edit it, which I will be doing slowly. As I edit I will post it here, and once it is completely finished I will publish it on Smashwords or Amazon and maybe even AO3.

So please, read along and do comment plenty! Let me know what you think, what you like and don’t like, and get involved! I love interacting and talking about my novels, so please drop a comment or two!