The Mage

Thursday, February 1st, 2018 18:44
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I try to think to myself for a moment. I look back at the door, then at the back of this transport ship. I am not allotted time to consider. I stand up.

The robotic voice from earlier calls out, Destination arrival completed. Exit the vehicle and proceed with orders. I recall that this is the thirty-seventh time I've heard those words.

I'm so tired that I feel like weeping, passing out on the floor of the transport. I can't, though. The software patcher will halt on any change in my OS state. Not only will I never be free, but I will likely die a painful and unforgivable death as my cybernetics fail to load the proper executables and force me into a state of permanent insanity. I must keep going.

The information streams through my mind, all the cerebral intake forcing itself through my consciousness in a raging torrent. Throughout it I catch the necessary pieces – my orders, and my mind.

My mind, though corrupted and unfeeling, still it holds many treasures: The methods I've learned and the hardware manufactured for them, the hundreds of hours of mechanical rewiring perfectly culminating into a vast network of possible configurations – though I digress.

The world is spinning, not just because of my head. Now there is no way out. So into the midst of Hell I go.

The Marine

Thursday, February 1st, 2018 18:40
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During the 17th century of the New Era, our country began drafting the youth into the military again. Most people couldn't understand why, even though it was pretty obvious if you looked at our current relations with other nations.

I wasn't particularly young, but they decided to draft me anyway - apparently they were short on people to steal away for their inscrutable purposes. When my term was up, though, I stayed, though, unlike the rest of my motley crew. Sometimes I wish I'd just packed my bags and left with them, but that thought is always followed with that, perhaps, this is just where I belong.

Where I belong and where I want to be could perhaps be different places entirely, but as fate has it, I'm going to be in the former, no matter what. Oh well, I sigh. Where in the world are we going?

The scientist responds, Not in the world. Out of it. While your deploy location is still technically — I cut him off. I don't give a damn. Just tell me where it is.

The egghead pauses for a minute. While he doesn't look disturbed by the question, he seems to not know how to phrase the answer. Hell. That's where you're going.

Somehow, a scoff escapes me, a disparaging chuckle – I completely believe him. He deliberates for a moment thinking I'd react, and asks, That's it? No questions? That would be quite honestly great, as we haven't much time.

Yeah. I start laughing, quietly. I'm goin' to Hell.

I've seen weirder things. Papa Billy always told me weird stories from his childhood, and I still believe them, to be honest. Hell really wouldn't be much stranger.

Can't help it. No use in fighting it. Maybe I'll get to shoot demons.

My laughter subsides, and I return my attention to the labcoated lunatic. No complaints here.

The scientist looks at me like I've grown a second head and walks back out the door, writing something on his clipboard all the while.

I sit back on the couch and close my eyes, waiting for the next interview. The sun shines out the window above me, and I fall asleep for a little while.

Another Day

Sunday, January 21st, 2018 10:04
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All points connect to one end, and eventually become nothing; nothing yet unforgotten, but the void where it sleeps. Slowly I become more than myself, carrying nothing's burden, and some day too will I sleep.

Rest in peace, to my cousin now departed, who will not be named. I've had too much of this recently.

So a fifth color enters.
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I can't sleep tonight. An unsure feeling creeps through my back and my spine, ultimately ceasing any thought of a good night's rest.

I count sheep. I count the stars out my window. I adjust my bed ever so slightly in a hundred different manners. It just isn't happening, no matter what I do. I jump through hoops. I fight to the death upon this hill.

The hill. It's gigantic. Bodies surround me, of my allies and enemies. Four men armed with naught but sword and shield. Chased from our village, now in ruin. Destroyed without mercy.

Foes of large stature, claw appendages and no eyes. They exist only to destroy, created by the angered god. Of all colors do they come, but of function unchanging; with epic stamina and incomprehensible strength.

Forlorn I stand, shaking in my boots. I can barely keep my legs from falling, much less keep my arms from dropping this claymore. The sound of the beasts does nothing but terrify me further, as they howl and hiss at the night sky, readying attack.

I am the only one left standing, but their numbers still seem without limit. Alone, I consider for a moment; would it be better to die here? It would certainly be selfish to run and leave the wounded, but also equally certain that my death would only bring the end of the world.

I shall fret for the last time, either way. The end is nigh no matter what I do. Out in the countryside there are no soldiers to save us, no ruler to call for help. So, I raise my arms. I ready to fight to my death.

Through me I feel an absolute rush. I charge into the fray, ten dozen men to one. The feel of steel hitting the odd flesh-like substance these monsters are made of is most certainly unheard of.

The blade cuts through them like a flaming axe to a block of ice. As much as I am out of breath, out of speed and out of mind, I manage to keep swinging, taking several out in but one hit. The long blade I carry is big enough to cut through at least five, but my aim is not the best when I am losing grip of everything.

Losing grip. I lose grip of the claymore. It goes flying as I swing it to the left, perhaps taking some adversaries with it, but ultimately landing me in the realm of absolutely going to die within moments.

And in that moment, I see a light break through the cloudy night. From behind me, a radiant blue dragon rises atop the mountain. The scales upon it gleam as it emits light from every facet of its body, and it speaks in a feminine voice that feels to be in my head: Scales of Daskuleion, be ridden from this place – you are but thorns to steel boots.

As it speaks to my salvation, the light emanating from the dragon's body shines so brightly it begins to blind me. I hear crackling and, moments later, open my eyes to see but ashes where my imminent death once stood.

Where I grew up, legends were told of a dragon whom lives under the cavernous mountains near the edge of the town. A dragon who will bring the end of everything we know every thousand years, unless paid two years of sacrifice and eternal remembrance.

But the dragon of legend's name is Daskuleion, the red dragon of greed.

I stand in awe, not knowing how to react. Immediately I run to my two friends left wounded, and sing prayers of restoration to them. Their life-threatening wounds are healed in blessed light, but I don't imagine they'll be able to move again for weeks.

The blue dragon looks to me and asks, Are you truly so daft as to climb a hill, beast of legend on top, just to save two people? — I flinch. Though true, I do not care. If a dragon is to kill me, I may as well attempt to save someone.

The dragon stares for a moment, and flies into the distance, past the trees. I soon pass out from sheer exhaustion.

I awaken from the dream.

An odd one, I think to myself, but perhaps anything can be an omen.

I ready myself for today, the day I descend the caverns to finally reconcile the local prophecy of Daskuleion.

I pray for godspeed.


Thursday, January 11th, 2018 23:38
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Behind every decision lies a depressing and deep truth, every one cascading into another forever. In every moment of our life, we have created purpose - and that purpose becomes inspiration for others.

That much is absolute, to me. And for that reason those who have passed truly deserve the highest respect, for their lives will be remembered; their inspiration absolute.

I have always found that the people who inspire me are not those who make the best thing, or make all the right decisions. Achievements are arbitrary in the eyes of reality. Those who are the most inspiring are those who have truly good intentions. Who care for others. Your creations could be completely garbage. They could be the best on Earth.

But what truly matters is the heart. I am inspired by those who make crappy art but persist and do what they love. I am inspired by those who make beautiful triple-A games that give me days of fun and relaxation. When one creates, when one lives for love and when one enjoys themself; that is what truly inspires me.

Rest in peace, Kate Fox. One of my greatest sources of inspiration, and sorry I never got to know you.
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