The Flames of Thotus: Dreams

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

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Prolog (v.1) - Purple Shadows

Submitted: April 28, 2018

Reads: 187

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Submitted: April 28, 2018




“Where is it?” the hooded man said, his venomous voice quietly echoing against the marble walls of the canvassed room.

“I don’t know,” Venias said. “I wasn’t the one guarding it.” His fingers felt clammy as he rubbed them together anxiously, trying to wipe the sweat away.

The deep purple of the sky peered in from the stained-glass windows dotting the ceiling. Venias could only see a thin-lipped smile slithering out from under the man’s hood. Everything else was bathed in purple shadow. Swallowing back his fear, he faintly stood his ground as the man slowly walked toward him, that unwavering smile seething through him like poison. Venias’ mouth was dry sand, his knees rattling in their sockets. The hooded man's voice almost made him jump, but he listened quite intently nonetheless.

“How did it feel?” He paused and cocked his head. “When you held it, I mean. Did you feel like a God? Did you feel like one of the ancient ones? I bet its power coursed through your veins at the mere sight of it.”

Venias stood there, knowing the feeling, remembering the surging rush of warmth he felt when he held his hands around it. He dared not say he could feel history itself pulsing through his body, but remembered the feeling as if it were still there, hovering quietly in the palms of his hands. How he wished right now that he did have it. The salvation it would offer him against this beast. It was almost enough to charge him head on and rip him apart. Almost.

“Answer me, you pious piece of trash. What does it feel like?”

“I-I just…I don’t remember,” Venias managed to say in between quick bursts of gasps. He felt so cold, yet he couldn’t keep the salty beads of sweat from trickling into his mouth.

Before he knew it, the man was on top of him, pushing the wind out of him. His head hit the floor with a crunch. Dazed and subdued, he managed to focus his vision to the assailant. His eyes were as lethal as his smile, a bright blue stare as sharp as crystals seething back at him.

“You know something, Venias? We are all nothing more than beasts. You and I, and the rest of the Historians. All of humanity is one big joke. Your Gods play with us, pit us against each other for their amusement. Even now, is it not just the will of your Gods to have me kill you? If not, Oh-ho-ho, they better stop me soon, then.”

Venias couldn't find his voice. He could only stare as the veins on the man's neck sharpen with every word, his eyes manically twitching back and forth. The man smirked. “What are we? Just play things for your gods? Primitive beasts that like to act like we’re civilized? NO!”

The cold dagger felt hot as it pierced through Venias’ shoulder, instantly spraying red droplets across the floor like a painting. He tried to let out a scream, but the man covered his mouth and stifled it, pressing his thin lips against Venias’ ear.

He harshly whispered, “Gods, humans, kings, legends, Ancient Ones, I’m going to destroy those titles. All of them. And a man like you, well, you will die like the rest.”

Venias could feel the jagged carving from the dagger, sliding back and forth against his shoulder bone. His body squirmed on the floor in agony as he desperately tried using his other hand to reach for the man’s throat. Before he could, the man quickly yanked the dagger out of his shoulder and backed away, eyes wide with excitement. Venias grabbed his wound instead and rolled back and forth on the floor, screaming violently.

“I will ask you one last time, where is the flame? Answer me, and I may be inclined to let you keep your arm.”

Venias couldn’t regain his composure to even speak. He could feel, taste, smell his own pain. Shredding, piercing pain. His arm throbbed, his mind raced but he couldn't keep looking at his fingers being soaked with his own blood. So, he helplessly squeezed his eyes closed.

All of a sudden, his body was calm. The pain was gone. Serenity and peace came flooding his senses and he found himself drifting, floating face-up in a river. As he opened his eyes, the sunlight flooded in hotly above him. But it didn’t blind him. His vision was, for some reason, crystal clear. The tree branches hanging above him were a deep, saturated green, the painless rays of sunlight breaking softly as he passed underneath them. A girl was playfully skipping down the river bank. She had a white, see-through dress with her blonde hair bouncing on its own curls.

She giggled as she ran, coyly looking back at him as his body limply drifted with the current. I know her, he thought.

My’re alive again. Venias called out to her, his voice echoing across the water surface, but she just giggled again and kept running. He couldn’t move anything but his hand, which he pulled out of the water and stared at his surprisingly dry palm. Is this real?

She darted off into the forest, through a brush and out of sight. “Wait!” he yelled, but before he could see her disappear, water began filling his mouth, nose and lungs. He was sinking, deeper into the water. Before he knew it, he was falling, not sinking. Falling through the night sky. He could see the moon now, a bright white contrast to the dark, starless sky behind it. The warmth was gone. He felt nothing but an icy chill breathing down his spine. He passed the trees of the forest below, bracing his body for impact. His body hit the ground with a thud, slamming on the forest floor violently, but again, he felt no pain.

He could move now. As quickly as he could, he stood up and stabilized himself against a tree and scanned the area. The moon reflected a thousand hiding shadows, dotting the forest floor. He was surrounded by black trees, the green leaves have long since withered and died, leaving behind the jagged sprawls of branches. The taste of hot ash was so thick, it coated the inside of his mouth. He had never wished for water so much in his life.

In a small clearing in this black woods, he could see a faint dangling silhouette, chained to a large wood post in the shape of an X. Glowing red ashes danced all about, giving the feint shadows around the body life.

“Sheria?” he called out. The silhouette’s head shifted back and forth in a sullen sway.

Venias found himself walking forward faster and faster towards her, his voice bellowing out over and over again. “Sheria! SHERIA!” He found himself at a run now, and the white dress seemed to slither around in the wind. He reached her body, and she stared back at him, lightly sobbing.

What's going on, he thought, staring back at her. “What happened to you?”

The woman’s eyes were missing, black vacant holes dripping tears of blood down the sides of her cheeks. She was pale…way too pale. Parts of her skin flaked off of her body, breaking apart and blowing away in the wind.

When did her dress become red? He thought, trying to grab her shoulders and pull himself closer to her. But her arms shattered apart and escaped between his fingers like eggshells. Not a moment later, they too were hot ashes waltzing in the air around her.

He wanted to cry but he couldn’t. He wanted to yell but he couldn’t. He didn’t care about her red dress, he didn’t care about her missing eyes. He didn’t care about her flaking, ashy skin. He just cared that Sheria was alive, in front of him right now.

For a brief moment, he could remember the way she lightly touched his skin when they laid together. How she would stare at him longingly with her beautiful, crystal green eyes whenever she wanted something. He even remembered the arguments and the face she would make during them, a constant reminder that he couldn't stay angry with her, he couldn't deny her anything. A love so rare, that nothing could ever fill the emptiness he felt when she passed.

But just as quick as the moment came, it was gone. He snapped back to the horror in front of him, the feelings of helpless desperation crashing back to him like a wave on the shore. What is happening to me? He brought his gaze back to Sheria’s grotesque face.

“What have they done to you,” he said, his voice crackling and shaky. “Where did you go, my love? I never wanted this.” His body shuddered as he scanned his shattered beauty in front of him, expecting an answer. She looked up with her cavernous eyes, staring blankly at him. Her mouth moved in very hushed patterns, letting a slight whisper escape out of her ashy lips.

“What did you say, my love?” He was still shaking, but leaned in closer to her, turning his head to hear better. She opened her mouth slightly again and he held his breath. Whatever came out next was definitely not the common tongue. It wasn’t Ancient Crystaneze either. But as foreign as it was to him, he could understand every word, clear as day.

“What have you done to me? You murdered me! YOU DID THIS.”

A horrific chill jetted down Venias’ spine. “I didn’t, my love. I-mean…I-I didn’t meant to. Please, the voices told me to. Don’t be mad at me, I always hated when you were mad at me.” His voice grew more unstable with every word of this foreign language he spoke. “I can fix you, I promise.”

“IT'S TOO LATE FOR THAT, RHAAAA!!!” The warped body started tearing forward. Voice screeching, shackles shattering and before Venias knew it, she had him pinned to the ground, cackling, laughing spats of blood onto his face. “KILL ME!”

The tears finally came. Venias could feel them on the side of his face. As helpless as he was, he couldn’t attack this woman, he couldn’t fight back. Wailing desperately, he yelled out the only thing he could think. “Please, Sheria, forgive me for letting you die.”

The body continued laughing that horrible laugh, flailing violently on top of him.

“Forgive me…forgive me…please, Sheria, forgive me…please…”


Venias was curled up on the marble floor, holding the wound on his arm, rocking back and forth whimpering “forgive me” over and over. He felt a strong yank on the back of his head as his hair was tugged at its roots. Where am I, he thought. He frantically squirmed and looked up at the hooded man, hovering over him, wide-eyed and smiling from ear to ear.

“What did you do to me?” He managed to say between gasps of fear.

The man’s smile grew even wider as he watched Venias’ eyes twitch back and forth in frantic agony.

“Ahhh…now that’s the power of the Gods,” he said. “If you really want to know, look closely, little sheep. I’ll show you.”

He let go of Venias’ hair and extended a closed fist in front of him. As he slowly opened his hand, Venias could see the violet glow illuminating from between his fingers. It was a soothing purple flame, hovering graciously in the palms of his hands. Not much larger than a necklace pendant, its dance looked as if the flame was actually alive. He could hear a feint, high-pitched humming noise emitting from the man’s palm. That was it...the flame he and his group had sworn to protect.

“The Animo Flame,” the hooded man whispered. “It’s mine now.”

Venias composed himself, fighting back the excruciating pain he felt in his shoulder. “You’ve had it all along…”

The hooded man remained silent as he closed his palms, letting the purple glow fade into nothing.

“But you…you attacked me. You were ASKING where the flame was.”

“Maybe…” the man said as he lowered his hood. “But then again, maybe I just wanted someone to test my new toy on. Someone I could have a little fun with.” He reached both hands up towards his hood.

The sky light flooded the room and illuminated the man's head. His shiny black hair fell to his shoulders and Venias saw those same piercing blue eyes staring back at him. His face looked jagged, like he hadn’t shaven in days and so angular, it could probably cut diamond.

“Wait, I know you!”

“Yes you do, little sheep,” the man said as he stood up.

“You're one of the...“ Venias tried to say but the man’s foot crunched his wounded shoulder. It was too much. He let out a heavy, echoing scream. The man bent over and raised the dagger to his trembling lips. Venias quickly squeezed his mouth shut and stifled his screams.

“Open your mouth, sheep.”

Venias shook his head vigorously, eyes wide with fear. The man pulled his dagger back, and for a second, Venias calmed his thoughts and shifted them to Sheria. My love…please…forgive me.

© Copyright 2019 T.Bowles1991. All rights reserved.


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