Posted May 29 2012 - 11:08 PM
Theme: Legends of Lhii
Word Count: 600 exactly!
Story: Lhii and the Proto Drake
“Gathered friends,” Turaga Vakama began, “listen again as I tell you another legend of the Bionicle.” Yellow eyes peer in from the darkness, either eager to hear the story and get away from work. Vakama‘s staff plunges into the fire and he begins telling his story…
A usual sight on Mata Nui is the scaled head of a Proto Drake breaking the surface of a lava pool. Sometimes they are regarded as good luck with Ta-Matoran, but today its crazed eyes and thrashing movements did not bode well. A large fin swept overhead, dripping lava on a lava farmer as it crashes nearby.
The red Matoran panicked and ran to Vakama, the terror in his eyes immediately quenching Vakama’s usual calm assurances. The Turaga of Fire gazed out from his hut for someone willing to combat the foe, and he found Lhii waiting for the Turaga’s instruction, Lavaboard in hand.
Knowing he would need more help, he took Nidki, the expert on Rahi from Le-Koro, Neh and Tohe, the best surfers in Ga-Koro, four Matoran of Ice for their quick sight, and three others strong enough to grab the beast.
By the time the Matoran had reached the lava pool, the Proto Drake had beaten the lava into a hurricane-like storm, with twenty bio tall waves crashing against the edges. Lhii took one look and jumped into the fray, with the two Ga-Matoran following after. The anxious Ko-Matoran, already feeling the heat, tried to keep a
watchful eye on the surfers and Rahi.
Days turned into weeks as the small group tried to break through the waves and get to the Rahi. Lhii’s Onu-Matoran netter clung onto the board, exhausted from the motion, while Lhii himself shot ahead, flying over wave after wave, but getting stopped at the last moment by the Proto Drake. These ceaseless attempts were just enough to keep the Rahi from flying off and wreaking havoc in another Koro.
Finally, an exhausted Lhii cried “Fall back!” and the surfers rode with their netters to the shore where sleeping Ko-Matoran waited. It was not to stop their efforts, as the rest of the group unhappily found out, but to strategize a better way to get into the clear zone. During this break, the Proto Drake dodged underneath the lava into volcanic tubes leading under the island, shocking the Matoran. Without hesitation, in all his bravery, Lhii started paddling furiously into the calming pool. The Ga-Matoran tried to follow, but stopped as he disappeared on the Rahi’s wake.
The four Ko-Matoran ran back to tell Vakama what had happened. All of their discomfort was forgotten, and they ran as fast as Pohatu carrying their news of Lhii’s supposed death. Vakama began walking to the lava pool along with the rest of Ta-Koro when suddenly, the pool below boiled and the Proto Drake shot out of it, its pained eyes set on the village of fire. The Ta-Matoran and their Turaga could only watch as the beast charged at their home, until a scorched Lhii followed after it. His armor was red hot and covered in ash, and yet with the strength of Onua he grabbed the clawed tail of the Proto Drake and hung on.
The momentary distraction diverted the Rahi, and it began flying in circles trying to rid itself of the weight. The Ko-Matoran took their cue to trap it with a spare net. Lhii gratefully dropped off onto Ta-Koro’s bridge, eager for rest. The Matoran found him burned, but alive, his fire resistance and the Rahi’s large wake in the slow-moving lava saving his life.
Well, I tried to add in a little more at the end, but realized I was at 630 words, and had to cut it all out . Ah well, I think it was a great legend (based on the Kanohi Dragon). Very interesting theme, I can't wait to see who wins.
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Posted May 29 2012 - 11:09 PM
As usual, any interpretation of the theme is valid, but it must be a BIONICLE story
, and it must adhere to the word count restriction posted above.
May 31th, 11:59 PM EST
Keep in mind that you can still enter The Legends of Lhii for roughly three more hours, and you can still enter The Game for another 24 hours.
Edited by Velox, May 31 2012 - 01:09 AM.
"As a writer you ask yourself to dream while awake." ~ Aimee Bender
Posted May 29 2012 - 11:19 PM
Theme: The Legends of Lhii
Word Count: 600
Story: Duty Bound
“We need to go.”
They didn’t need Lhii’s warning, feeling the rumbles from the base of the volcano. The lava farmers nodded at the tribe leader, swiftly stowing their tools and grabbing their boards. Lhii was last to leave the area, habitually checking for any stragglers or abandoned tools. It would not do well for the Guard if he left someone behind, as he had done in the early days of his post. We need all the Matoran we can to defend against the recent attacks, he thought, feeling the gash in his thigh from a Nui Rama attack a week ago.
The Mangai rumbled again, the Ta-Matoran nervously glancing up at its peak. Lhii’s Pakari stared straightforward, avoiding all distractions that would prevent them from reaching the village safely. If the volcano erupted now, the lava flow that led back to Ta-Koro would overflow, and they would all perish. They only needed a quarter of an hour. Mata Nui, give me this small amount of time, just let us make it back to Ta-Koro, he prayed.
Sweat dripped from under their masks as the troop leapt onto the lava, coasting on their boards. Quick paddles gave them momentum, and gravity took over as they surfed downriver to Ta-Koro. A hot, stiff breeze blew into their faces, making the farmers squint as their eyes encountered the heat. Lhii wanted to go faster, to travel down this route like he did the surf at the Ignalu Surf competition a few months prior- but this was not a time for leisure. It could just be a hiccup from the Mangai, but in the potential danger he was bound to his duty to get these Matoran, and himself, home safely.
“You weren’t out long,” Jala remarked upon his friend’s arrival.
“The volcano is starting up,” Lhii replied. “and Rahi have been frequenting visits far too often this week. You know I don’t run from a fight… I’ve just been uneasy this week.” As he and Jala opened the gate for the farmers, Mangai burst, the glow of the lava shadowing Ta-Koro below. It was fast approaching, and Lhii watched with narrow eyes. “I’m going back out there,” he said to his co-captain, even as the lava poured closer to Ta-Koro.
“They’ll make it in time!” Jala’s Hau protested, but it was too late. Lhii was already off into the lava. Mata Nui protect him.
Fiery liquid surged the banks, and the lava farmers frantically paddled toward the gate. Lhii cruised toward the party, bringing them safely to where the lava could not penetrate. Rolling waves started to form as he aimed toward the Matoran who expected him on shore, and he could feel the rumbling of another powerful eruption on the way.
Lhii was a brave Matoran, taking his fair share in the Rahi Wars. Makuta knew this well, and could hear all the prayers that came from those who watched, as though he were the god receiving them; He also sensed Lhii’s injury, and sought to show the Matoran that defiance of his rule would have consequences. His Rahi in the lava burst up, knocking the board from under the Ta-Matoran. No one believed what they saw as Lhii tumbled, expecting him to cruise laughingly onto shore.
Water is for wimps, the Ta-Matoran would tell all of the boastful Ga-Matoran who stepped up to be the best surfers. They could fall and get back up, but they would never stand as tall as Lhii did.
So this is how we make peace, brother, Vakama thought as he closed his lips.
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Posted May 30 2012 - 12:36 AM
Theme: The Legends of Lhii
Word Count: 597
Story: Lhii can ride' em
Lhii, Jaller and Maglya raced to the edge of the bridge, each carrying wooden surfboards, built from the trees of the nearby forest. Vakama, Kapura and Tiribomba followed, stopping just outside the winch room.
“They could not have rushed out of that shop sooner,” Tiribomba remarked, “They even forgot to pay for their boards! I practically had to give my whole widget sack to Vohon paying for them!”
“Agreed…” Kapura replied. He stumbled toward the edge of the bridge. “I still haven’t recovered from when they rushed past me.”
“Then I suggest you keep away from the edge,” warned Vakama, “That lava is deadly, even for a Ta-Matoran.”
“Sorry Tiribomba,” panted Jaller, “I tried to warn them about paying, but they left too quickly.”
“Well all of you owe me,” Tiribomba shot back, “I’m practically broke because of you. Surfboards aren’t cheap, you know!”
Before Jaller could respond, Vakama stepped in. “This is no time to fight. This is supposed to be a friendly competition. Tiribomba, what’s the status with the flows?”
Tiribomba looked over the cliff and studied the lava below. As a lava farmer, he knew the ebb and flow of the lake more than most. “It’s AOK,” he said.
Vakama nodded to Kapura, who went into the winch room. Lhii, Jaller and Maglya headed onto the bridge, each standing on a separate pillar.
“You won’t beat me this time,” said Maglya.
“That’s what you said last time,” cheekily replied Lhii, “and the time before that. Has there EVER been a time where I haven’t beaten you?”
“Well, there was that time I…” Maglya started. As he stalled to think, Lhii grinned. “I didn’t think so.”
“The race will now begin,” called Vakama from the edge, “you can start as soon as Kapura lowers the bridge.”
“Knowing Kapura, that’ll take forever…” Maglya muttered. Suddenly the pillars that were the bridge to Ta-Koro began to sink. Maglya nearly lost his balance!
Jaller laughed. Lhii however, was focusing hard on the lava flows, searching for a good opening.
The instant he saw it, he hurled his board into the lava, jumped on and glided off before the others had a chance to react!
“Wait for me!” Maglya called after him. Jumping in, he followed the same path Lhii took. Jaller quickly rode after them.
Vakama then paced down the other way to meet the Matoran when they returned to the bridge. Ta-Koro was surrounded on all ends by a ring of lava, so he knew the Matoran would soon appear around the other bend.
Suddenly, the rock underneath Vakama’s right foot rumbled, and he slipped off the edge! “TURAGA!” Tiribomba called, unable to reach him in time.
Luckily, Lhii was just rounding the bend at that very moment. He looked up, and his eyes widened at the sight of Vakama falling. He sped forward, grabbing Vakama as he fell. Lhii threw Vakama onto the bridge, but was unable to stop his board from crashing into it. Lhii went head over heels over the bridge and sank into the lava on the other side, dead before he could scream.
Maglya and Jaller had just rounded the bend too, and witnessed the event. Both leaped off their boards and rushed to the other side, looking into the lava with horror. Vakama quickly called for Tiribomba to raise the bridge.
“May the Great Spirit guide him to the hereafter…” said Vakama quietly as they returned. He turned to the shocked Matoran. “I shall inform the village of our loss. Tomorrow we will hold a village-wide memorial to the fallen legend…”
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Posted May 30 2012 - 12:50 AM
Theme: Legends of Lhii
Word Count: 600
Story: Hot Air
It was only three days after the arrival of the Toa on Mata Nui. After the initial furor, the Matoran had gone back to work. But they were still keyed up, and Turaga Vakama had been forced to relate all the prophecies concerning the Toa yet again. Having run out of those, he had begun relating some of the Matoran's favorite tales, including several about Lhii, the mythical Matoran lava surfer extraordinaire.
Vakama kept speaking, even after an awed silence told him Tahu must have entered the room behind him.
The story ended, and the Matoran filed silently from the room. Vakama turned to face Tahu, who, as usual, did not waste any time with niceties.
“That story about the Matoran; that was true?”
Vakama inclined his head in assent.
Tahu pointed to the lava fall about a mile away. “That was the one he went down, and survived?”
The fall in question a gigantic thing, spewing many dozen tons of lava every second out of a tunnel in the mountainside. From there the molten rock fell almost a thousand feet to pool up into a lave lake more than a mile across. The radiant heat from it was so strong even Ta-Matoran avoided it when possible.
“He did more than survive,” The Turaga said, “He placed a small replica of the Mata Nui stone on an outcropping about halfway down the fall.” (This stone had actually been placed there many years ago by Turaga Nuju's Mask of Telekinesis, at Turaga Vakama's request. It helped make Lhii more real to the Matoran, and furthered the myths meant to honor Toa Lhikan's memory.)
The Turaga spoke reverently, thinking of Toa Lhikan, “He was the greatest lava surfer of all time.”
Tahu stood, apparently digesting this. He appeared intrigued, but abruptly turned on his heel and started to leave the room. Even Vakama, who had grown used to brusqueness from Tahu, was somewhat startled by this abrupt departure.
“Where are you going to so quickly, Toa?”
Tahu looked back over his shoulder slightly without slowing down. “If I can't beat a Matoran at surfing, I have no business or chance in a fight against the Makuta. I will be back in an hour, Turaga.”
Vakama was shocked. The urge to save Tahu from almost certain death warred with habits he had built over one thousand years of elaborate lying. He struggled with himself to speak the truth, tell Tahu it was merely a falsehood to commemorate Toa Lhikan. But the repercussions of such an admittance choked him. The truth, Vakama told himself, would out. Everything about Metru Nui and how the Matoran truly arrived here on Mata Nui would be revealed.
As Tahu's steps faded down the corridor, Vakama finally convinced himself that honesty was the best policy. But by then it was far too late. Horrified, Vakama saw a tiny dot go down the fall. He knew he had doomed the Matoran to an existence beneath Makuta just to continue the perpetration of some relatively unimportant lies. He buried his face in in hands. despairing, cursing the lies the Turaga spoke so glibly.
It was a sudden crash that brought the Turaga out of the nightmare he had created for himself. He looked up slowly to see a smoking Mata Nui stone in front of him. He stared wonderingly at Tahu's smoldering back as he walked away.
The next day Tahu, passing by the chamber, heard Vakama begin another tale. But this story started differently. “Now listen to the story of Lhii,” Vakama said, “The second-greatest lava surfer of all time...”
Edited by What?, May 30 2012 - 12:53 AM.
Posted May 30 2012 - 01:38 AM
Theme: Legends of Lhii
Story: Lava Rescue
Word Count: 599
Lhii calmly noted the current of the lava and carefully repositioned his lava board so that he wouldn’t lose control of it. This land of heat and lava was his domain, and he had no intention of making a stupid mistake and dying because of it. He had a reputation to uphold, after all.
As Lhii surfed, he thought about what had happened on the island during the last few months. At first, life had been peaceful, with the only concern of the Matoran being a slight overabundance of free time. Lhii had of course used that time to build a name for himself as the island’s best lava surfer, but lately… Lately, there had been instances. A missing tool here, a broken Ussal cart there. Nothing too big, but certainly an annoyance to a Matoran actually invested in their work.
But yesterday, a Matoran had gone missing. It was the first time anything like this had happened on their peaceful little island, and it had caused quite the uproar. Lhii himself had been quite shaken by the news, though he tried to conceal his worry with a number of bad jokes and general tomfoolery. The other Matoran all wondered how he could behave in such a manner while such a grave situation was taking place, but Lhii refused to explain his actions.
Lhii’s best friend had disappeared, and Lhii was going to find him if it was the last thing he did.
* * *Weeks went by, with no sign of the missing Matoran. Eventually, the island gave up, convinced that the Matoran was gone for good. Lhii knew better, though. He knew his friend was out there. He had to be. So Lhii kept looking, even when all trails had long since dried up and everyone else had abandoned the search.
One day, Lhii decided to take a short break from his constant search and relax a bit, to give himself a short reprieve. Naturally, this meant participating in a sport which entailed his being separated from a lake of lave by nothing more than a few inches of metallic something-or-rather. To Lhii, lava surfing was the most enjoyable thing in the world.
As Lhii surfed, he noticed a small tunnel branching off from the main path. Making his way over to it, Lhii noticed a few scratch marks on the wall. From the looks of it, they belonged to Nui Rama, but what would Nui Rama have been doing scratching at the wall? They were much too big to fit inside, unless…
Without hesitation, Lhii flung himself into the tunnel, the heat steadily increasing as he ventured farther in and further down. After a while of surfing, Lhii thought he heard a small voice cry out from the darkness. It was faint, but he had a good idea of who it belonged to. Sure enough, just a bit farther ahead was his friend desperately clinging to the wall in an attempt to not fall into the lava and be horrifically burned (and subsequently killed).
“I found you!” Lhii said, his voice ringing with triumph. However, his newly-regained companion did not share in his happiness.
“How are we supposed to get back? The slope is too steep to surf up!” the Ta-Matoran wailed.
At this point, Vakama stopped talking and looked at the group of Ta-Matoran assembled before him. His eyes were serious, and his voice was grave. However, the Ta-Matoran would never be quite sure if what he said next was in seriousness or not.
“And that is why you always surf with a buddy.”
Edited by Despair, May 30 2012 - 01:55 AM.
Posted May 30 2012 - 11:02 AM
Word Count: 502
"What is that, up there in the sky?"
"I don't know. None of us know, they've been going past overheard for days now."
"Maybe they're from outside of the island? I've never seen anything from outside before!"
"Yeah, I haven't either!"
"They'd have to be from outside. I've never seen any of them on our island."
"Wise Turaga, can you tell us what they are?"
"I have never seen anything move in such a way. They fly without wings overhead, but how do they fly? I am unable to answer your questions, for I do not know what they are, or from where they come from."
"I wonder what they are. And I wonder where they're going. It must be important, for they never stop their flights.."
"The storm is here. It looks like a really bad one. We need to start getting things inside."
"Didn't anyone hear me!? We need to get our things inside!"
"Look, in the sky!"
"Is that one of the flyers? What's it doing?"
"It's going into the storm! Why is it doing that!?"
"Whoa! Did you see that lightning?! I've never seen anything as bright as that!"
"What is... look, there! It's the flyer! It's falling from the sky!"
"Hurry! We have to see what it is!"
"Look... look at all of the pieces... it has fallen apart."
"Wait, there! In the crater, there it is!"
"Does it have a broken spear?"
"Where is its arm?"
"The lightning charred it really badly..."
"This is incredible! This is the first time I've ever seen anything like it! Look at those spikes on its back!"
"I think it's dead. Someone go in there and check!"
"What? Oh, fine. I'll go check. But if it kills me, I'm blaming you all."
"What is it, what do you see?"
"I... I... It's moving... It's not dead. It's alive!"
"Get out of there, it's moving! Oh Mata Nui, it's leg just snapped off!"
"Its face! Part of its face fell off!"
"Is its back moving? Part of it's cracking open... but it seems stuck!"
"It can't seem to move..."
"I tried to bring it food, but it wouldn't eat. All it did was hiss, and it didn't even open its mouth to do that."
"It wouldn't take any water either. I don't know if it even could open its mouth..."
"I'm still wondering what exactly it was. It didn't seem like it could speak, it looked really hurt..."
"Perhaps, young ones, it is for the best. Maybe it is something we were not meant to know, something from outside that will always be a mystery. But, let us honor this brave creature that dared to fly through a storm, only to meet its demise. We will bury it in the crater where it landed. You should get to work on digging if you wish to allow it a proper burial."
"Yes Turaga... we're going."
"They are gone... working to bury the accursed creature. So the flyers are the sons of Makuta... Something is very, very wrong. I have seen it in the stars for many years... but I did not want to believe it. We must be leaving our island, it is no longer safe."
Posted May 30 2012 - 03:55 PM
Word Count: 417
Story: The New Kadin
Nuparu loved his new mask. He thanked Mata Nui every single hour for it.
But what made him love it more is the looks of envy he got from Kongu.
What? It wasn’t his fault he got his mask. Blame the Red Star’s lightning.
He inhaled deeply, feeling the wind splash his mask.
He loved flying. At first he hated it. He was a Toa of Earth. Why should he be able to fly? When he was a matoran, he hardly ever went above ground. Now, he was literally above the ground.
With Kongu sitting on a rock, staring at Nuparu’s aerobatics, he wished he could fly. Once, a couple of months back, Toa Lewa had given him a ride. He thoroughly enjoyed the exhilaration, and yearned to fly once more. But, alas, he could not. Yes, he was a Toa of Air, but he did not have a Miru, or, what he most coveted, the Kadin.
Nuparu noticed Kongu’s depressed look. He did a loop-the-loop and landed, right in front of Kongu.
He looked up from the rock, and stopped poking the worm near him. “What do you want,” he asked, quite annoyed. “Here to rub it in again?”
“Only if you want me to. But I was going to ask if you wanted to fly.”
“Can you handle the weight of both of us?”
“Of course I can,” Nuparu said, pompous as ever.
He then created a high column of mud and soil, upon which both were standing. A slight breeze kicked in, the air being blown into their faces.
“Do you honestly hate me for what I am,” Nuparu asked suddenly.
“How can I? It’s not like you asked Karzahni for a Kadin when we were in his realm.”
Nuparu shuddered with the thought. “The Land of Nightmares and Death,” he quoted.
“I didn’t know you read the ancient texts.”
“They were in the archives, practically carved into the wall.”
“Anyway, he probably just grabbed a random mask and put it on you.”
“He’s a lunatic. Thinking he can ‘fix’ us.”
“You really think so?” Kongu asked.
“Let’s get started on that ‘flying’ you mentioned earlier. Think you can handle your stomach?”
“We’ll see if I can’t,” Kongu replied. “No, really. We’ll be able to see it falling.”
The feeling of flight, like always, was exciting.
You know, because it’s so fun to get whipped in the face with air.
But it was always a feeling of freedom that overcame all.
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Posted May 30 2012 - 05:41 PM
Word Count: 587
Story: To Overcome
Toa Nuparu stood on the edge of a very steep cliff, roughly 200 feet above a large lake. Behind him stood Turaga Onua, four other Toa, and the majority of the Matoran from his village. They were all on this high mountain ledge for one reason: to help Nuparu overcome his fear of heights.
Nuparu, who only had been a Toa of Earth for a few days now, had an extreme fear of heights that haunted him for as he could remember. This wouldn't have been a big deal, except that the Toa of Earth had been given a Kadin, a Mask of Flight, as his Kanohi. So scared of heights was Nuparu that he couldn't even concentrate to activate the mask.
The Toa tried to trade his mask for one of the other Toa's Kanohi, but Turaga Onua refused to have it.
"Destiny gave you that mask, so you should be the one to use it." The Turaga simply said.
So when Nuparu asked Onua what he should do, the Turaga suggested that the Toa put himself in a situation that would force him to overcome his fear. Which led to Nuparu standing on the edge of a cliff, mentally preparing himself to jump off it.
"Why couldn't I have gotten a different Kanohi?" Nuparu thought as he moved slowly towards the ledge. He took a deep breath. There was no going back now.
Nuparu braced himself. He raised his arms, closed his eyes, fought the urge inside him to back away from the edge, and jumped off the cliff.
The Toa felt the wind rush past him as he plummeted towards the lake below. He made the mistake of opening his eyes. He saw the lake rushing towards him, and panic began to overwhem him.
"I'm going to die! I'm going to die!" Nuparu repeatedly thought as he fell. Tried as he might, he couldn't get those words out of his head.
Deep down, he knew he wasn't going to die. At worst, he would hit the water and only receive a few sore muscles from this nightmare. He was in no danger at all, really.
"But the villagers will see me fail." He realized suddenly. "They will see that I'm not able to overcome my fear, even now that I'm a Toa."
That startling thought snapped him out of his panic. He closed his eyes again and quickly started concentrating on his Kanohi, trying to activate it before he hit the water. He had only seconds to stop his descent before he slammed into the lake.
Suddenly, the feeling that he was falling left him. He opened his eyes and found that he was now slowly flying up back towards the ledge he jumped off. Turaga Onua, the other Toa, and the Matoran above all cheered in joy at the sight of Nuparu using his Kanohi Kadin.
"Hey, this isn't too bad." Nuparu said to himself. Seeing everyone cheering for him above, the Toa of Earth attempted to increase the speed of his ascent. But, with his skill with the Kadin not perfected, he instead unintentionally slammed himself into the rock wall in front of him. The blow dazed him, but it did no serious harm to the Toa.
"I should definitely practice some more with this mask before I hurt myself." He thought jokingly as he began to ascend back towards his friends on the cliff above.
Posted May 30 2012 - 05:42 PM
Member Name: Ballistic Jello Pickles (Toa of Dancing)
Word Count: 467
Story: Fight or Flight
Running, running, forever running. The beasts were always behind, ready to consume her. Why didn’t they tire, why was there no escape? Did Mata-Nui, the Great Spirits, or whoever was in control of the universe find it fit for her to eternally suffer like this? Did she commit some overwhelming sin that had gotten her banished to this Doom Viper’s pit, this Karzahni?
She didn’t know, and she didn’t know why she didn’t know. She didn’t know how she could find these lost memories, either. She didn’t even know her name.
She woke up one morning here, or at least she thought morning was the correct term. She had vocabulary jumbled in her mind, and she knew what a lot of it meant, or at least she assumed she did. She also thought she was in a cave, and that the cries of these terrible beasts sounded like ferocious, starving Muaka. The grunts sounded like furious Stone Apes. The hisses sounded like venomous, hunting Doom Vipers.
But she couldn’t remember anything! She was a... Matoran. Of water, she thought, due to the blue armor she caught sight of in the brief light she entered every few hours. The beasts stopped when she entered these areas, staying out of sight. She thought she was safe. Then night fell, and she found herself fleeing again.
She still didn’t know why. She didn’t have a clue. She just remembered... blood. Oil. Torn flesh, shattered machinery. Dying gasps. Cold laughs. Utter fear. Bright red eyes. Fire on the water surrounding the village. Darkness. She thought she had died...
But she couldn’t remember anything. That was nothing. It was fragments of memory, not memories themselves. She remembered adrenaline pumping, fighting for her life. Against something. It was some beast, or maybe it was some sapient creature. She didn’t remember. She just knew that she couldn’t fight this time. She had to continue her flight, desperately hoping for a light at the end of this tunnel... A light that wouldn’t be from an impossibly tall, perfectly smooth shaft going straight into whiteness above.
Fate... that was the word. Why had fate taken her here? What was fate, truly? Was it that she would run until her strength gave out, that her flight would end and she would be torn to shreds by these Rahi?
Wait... was that light? She dared not hope. Yes, it was. It grew stronger. But it couldn’t be an escape. Was it? It seemed warm... unlike the previous rays. They were sterile, white. This was flickering, warm, orange.
It was a... candle? A torch? Those were light devices. They provided fire. Fire was warm, flickering, life-giving. They meant someone was near. With one final push of her tired legs, the Matoran stumbled from the tunnel and into the light.
TONS OF DAMAGE
Better nerf Irelia.
Posted May 30 2012 - 05:45 PM
Word Count: 599
Story: The Necrofinch
Desolation. Misery. Sorrow. That was what the forests of Zakaz represented now.
Once green and lush, now grey and dismal. Once indicative of life, now death. Once a prosperous, paradisal island; now bereft.
It was here, where the land had been bereft of its verdure, that I had been bereft of my Linorru. It was here the Skakdi had stood over her body, deprived of life, grinning psychotically as they always did. And it was here those Skakdi had died by my hand--and wept over Linorru's inert form.
Now it was here that I laid a flower over the spot she had fallen. It was here I caressed the earth where her body had breathed its last. It was here I listened to the raucous dirges of the Necrofinch as it circled overhead, grieving for all the death its eyes had beheld in this land.
I sighed to the wind, "I would curse Zakaz, if it wasn't cursed already. No words of mine can bring upon it worse banes than have befallen it. What worse bane than to live dead? than to remain but to breathe with life nevermore?"
Then I heard a voice. "Nevermore."
Startled, I looked about. But I was alone. I gazed up at the Necrofinch as it continued its flight and obsequial song.
Bar its song there was silence. I whispered, "Linorru--Linorru, is that you?"
"Is that you speaking, Linorru?"
"Nevermore . . . will you speak. This is the truth."
I looked about again. The Necrofinch's song had ended. It was gliding downward, to surcease its flight upon the bough of a lifeless tree. There it perched, its feathers fluffed regally, staring at me with a pompous air.
I almost smiled. "Can--can you speak?"
"What do you mean, creature?"
I regarded the Necrofinch with curiosity, wondering what the ominous creature meant in croaking its despondent word. It was a grim, ungaily creature, both ghastly and gaunt.
"Tell me, bird: have you seen much of the universe?"
"I take you to mean you have, but will----"
"Precisely. And now you are trapped here, to leave----"
I nodded. "I too am trapped. Trapped by my soul, laden with sorrow, burdened with grief for the love lost here, for the love I will see----"
"Tell me, bird--you seem a wise creature, witness to much in the universe--will you share with me your wisdom?"
"But please, I must know! You must tell me what I ask. Tell me whether--whether in some distant land, in some life to come . . . will I see again my love?"
I rose. Voice shaking, I echoed, "Nevermore?"
I bowed my head in sorrow. My hands shook. Dolor swept over me afresh. I glowered up at the Necrofinch. "Thing of evil!" I hissed. "Lies! All lies! I will see Linorru----"
I unleashed a cry of anger and unsheathed my dagger. With a frenzied vociferation I hurled it at the bird. It sunk into the Necrofinch's chest, driving it from its lofty perch to the ground below.
And then, incredulous, I watched the bird take flight, the dagger imbedded in its body. Slowly it flew higher, into the sky, doling out its melancholy dirge.
I watched it fly away. "But of course . . . the Necrofinch. . . . What worse bane than to live dead? than to remain but to breathe with life nevermore? than to fly in neverending death?"
I fell upon my knees and wept.
Posted May 30 2012 - 08:46 PM
Word Count: 599
Story: The First Jump
Bizon stared incredulously at Talryx. “Come on! These flight packs were designed by the Nynrah Ghosts! It's not like they'll go wrong. Jump!”
“I can't. It's too far,” Talryx stuttered, staring fearfully over the edge of the great cliff before them. It dropped away sharply, falling back beyond view. All that lay before them was empty space; an unfathomable drop to an unknown fate.
“We can't go back. You saw the guards. Huge, silver things with red eyes and maces. It's either this, or them,” said Bizon impatiently.
“We should never have taken them in the first place!” Talryx wailed. “I said it was a bad idea!”
“Great Beings, there are tunnel rats braver than you! Just jump of the edge. The flight pack will activate and you face where you want to go. Now jump, before those guards catch up with us!”
Talryx had not mentioned how afraid he was of heights. Ever since Dark Hunters had blitzed through their village some years before and almost dropped him off a building, he had been terrified of high places. Perhaps stealing flight packs from a mountain fortress had not been a good idea after all.
“So. You gonna jump or what?” Said Bizon.
“N-no. I can't-” Talryx's voice faded as he gazed, wide-eyed, into the endless abyss below. It was so vast, so huge and so...empty. He couldn't do it. But he had to. Every instinct, every thought, screamed at him not to jump. The flight packs would never work. They had been gathering dust for hundreds of years. But he had no choice. Hesitantly, he stepped forward...
“Oh for Mata Nui's sake!” Bizon sighed and pushed Talryx off the edge.
Talryx closed his eyes as he fell, screaming all the way. He felt the terror overtaking him, drowning him as the wind rushed past his face. He was falling. Falling further and further and he couldn't stop, he couldn't stop...
Something clamped tightly over his face. He thrashed about, struggling, arms flailing wildly.
“Stop that!” Demanded Bizon. “You're flying, all right? You're flying! Stop writhing about while I look for somewhere to land!”
Talryx hesitantly opened one eye. He couldn't be, could he? He closed it again, took a deep breath, then opened them both. He was flying! He was actually flying!
It was still terrifying, of course. Terrifying, but also somehow...exciting! Exhilarating! He could see the whole world from up there. He could go anywhere! This, was freedom!
“We land there,” Bizon said, pointing to a clearing.
The two of them swooped down, flying on the wind and through the wind, spinning and turning in ways they had never dreamed possible. All too soon it was over, and they landed gently on solid ground, Talryx shaking like a leaf.
“Wait until the others see this!” Talryx exclaimed. “This is amazing!”
“Never mind the others,” Bizon growled. “This is Nynrah craftsmanship! We'll make a fortune!”
As Talryx opened his mouth to respond, flashes of light flared up around them. Where there had once been empty space, eight guards encircled them.
“Quick! Fly out of here!” Bizon shouted, but as he did so a guard grabbed him and tore the flight pack from his body. Another did the same to Talryx and, as quickly as they had arrived, they were gone.
“They took them! After all that, they just took them!” Bizon raged. “What are we supposed to do now??”
Talryx shrugged. “We'll have steal them again, won't we?”
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Posted May 30 2012 - 10:17 PM
"As a writer you ask yourself to dream while awake." ~ Aimee Bender
Posted May 31 2012 - 01:24 AM
Member Name: Panty Anarchy
Word Count: 600
Story: Free to Fall
Free to Fall
Toa Gequira fell, cutting through the air, the ground rushing to greet him, with a smile on his face; there was nothing in the world he enjoyed more. The risk, the air, the view: it was incomparable.
As the ground got nearer, he reluctantly activated his Kadin. As his free fall turned into a controlled flight, he, feeling the same rapid drop in excitement he always did, observed his surroundings. The snow-coated mountain he had jumped off loomed high behind him. Directly below, a forest of ice stood, as it always did, in its unnatural stillness. At one time, Gequira might have found the image captivating. That was long past.
As he made his way to the encampment he’d inhabited for the past several years, which lay at the edge between the forest and the mountain, he reflected on his obsession with the fall. Was the fall his way to escaping his situation? Did he resent having to protect the forest and its “heart?” Was he frustrated by the fact that he had to stand guard, and that he wasn’t trusted enough by his team leader to be told the specifics of their duty?
It was not all. He was a veteran Toa; he had fought his share of vicious battles. He had spent much of his life at constant risk. And yet, now that he had a peaceful duty, the calm was unbearable. The fall granted him equal parts risk and carefreeness, peace and excitement, action and tranquility. Without it, he felt he’d go mad.
Reaching the camp, he felt a new presence in the area. As usual, a Toa was standing guard. Inside a rough structure composed of rock, he knew he would find the team’s leader, but he felt he would find somebody else inside. As he landed, he saw, through the open doorway, that he was right. A single Ko-Matoran stood near the exit. Beyond him, he could see his team leader, her face unreadable.
“What’s this, Preayis? Who is our guest?”
She noticed him and answered: “Just a Matoran villager from a nearby village, a trader. He is here representing the Dark Hunters. Threatened into service, I would think.”
“What do they want?”
“They are requesting we cooperate in their retrieval of this land’s heart. A bold request, I must add. ”
“It’s not a request.” The Ko-Matoran’s voice was so quiet, Gequira almost didn’t hear it. “They’re already here.”
Gequira rushed outside. The guard was nowhere to be found. On the periphery of his vision, he saw various indistinguishable dark shapes fluttering around. In order to get a better view, he took flight, soaring upwards. Down below, he could see Preayis exiting the camp, lightning crackling around her hands.
As he angled down to aid her, he was struck by a strong blast. Thrown off course, he crashed, and lost all consciousness.
When he woke, he saw two Dark Hunters in front of him. What they said he barely registered. They had kept him, and only him, alive. They needed him too lead them to the heart. That almost made him laugh.
Knowing there was no escape, he led them up the mountain. It was a long trek, one he used to reflect on his choices. Nearing the top, he saw the surroundings one more time. It was beautiful. It was his freedom.
Before the Hunters could do anything, he used his elemental powers to make the stone under his feet slope and give way.
And again, he fell.
The Hunters had taken his mask. There would be no flight.
Posted May 31 2012 - 07:06 AM
Word Count: 458
Story: Tamaru’s Journey
Tamaru stood, legs dangling off of the brittle platform of one of the many Le-Matoran huts. He sighed. Looking up, he saw gukko birds soaring through the wind. He smiled, longing the soaring air and thrill of flight. Looking down once again, his doubts began once more. A Le-Matoran sat down right next to him. It was Kongu. “What’s wrong Tamaru? We’re all celebrating, and you’re here, come and join us!” Kongu began to smile, but Tamaru still frowned. Tamaru picked up a rock and threw it at a tree in anger. “Here’s the thing: I want to fly, so bad. It’s been my dream. But then I look down…” Kongu laughed. “Why didn’t you say so? Before we let the new recruits of the Gukko Force go up wind-riding, we have them glide a couple feet above the ground, come on! We’ll take Ka out and you’ll get your wish!”
Kongu took Tamaru to a long stretch of clear land. The ground was trampled from previous flights. Kongu gave a short whistle and Ka dive down through the trees. Kongu turned to Tamaru. Alright, you drive, I’ll ride as second. Just pull the reigns in direction you want Ka to go, it’s that simple. The two matoran got up on the Gukko Bird, and Ka began to run. Tamaru concentrated. He pulled up on the reigns and Ka started to glide. Tamaru laughed. “WOO HOO! I feel like Toa Lewa!” It was a couple minutes before Kongu spoke. “Alright Tamaru, take her down whenever your comfertable.” “No.” Kongu took at Tamaru. His determined posture revealed he was about to do something. Tamaru pulled up quickly on the reigns. Ka looked back at Kongu, with a questioning look in his eyes. Kongu smiled and nodded. Ka screeched out and rose through the thick, green canopy.
Tamaru looked around him. Bright green canopy could be seen far below him, and Mount Ihu could be seen in the foggy distance. The Le-Matoran peered down at the ground, but was not afraid. “I’m flying Kongu, I’m flying!” Tamaru cheered and did a nosedive. He could see Le-Koro in the distance. He began to lower and landed on the main platform of the village. Le-Matoran were still playing their instruments, and Tamaru joined in this time.
Hours later, Kongu came upon Tamaru, in the same dangling position as before, with a more determined glance in his eye. Kongu sat down. “Tamaru, you did excellent.” Tamaru turned to Kongu. “Thank you.” Kongu stood up. “We don’t get many good Gukko riders here in Le-Koro, I would like if you joined the guard. Think about it, it can be dangerous.” Kongu walked off, and Tamaru ran after him, his answer already decided.
Posted May 31 2012 - 07:57 AM
Word Count: 600
Story: The Pet
Sety was glum.
This feeling puzzled him, even as it ghosted by. He had all he could wish for in life. He had a roomy cage, kept above the ground, away from anything prowling below. He was kept fed and watered, and he was cleaned regularly. What else was there?
Still, there was a doubt, a wriggling, nagging ideal that sat in the back of his head. Something was off. He was a Le-Matoran, but there was something not right about him. Was it the wings that jutted from his back oddly like some last-minute detail in a portrait? Or was it the metal circlet that dug into his head? Surely not! His master had told him not to worry.
He rushed to the side of his cage and whistled happily as his master, Makuta Mutran, climbed a podium towards his cage. The Makuta smiled at him, seeming to enjoy the attention. “Ah, Sety! How are you? Happy, I hope?”
“Oh, yes, master!” Sety chirruped in return. Mutran reached in to pat him on the head. As his claws brushed the circlet, something flexed in Sety’s head. Dreams… nightmares… memories? They flooded his head like a tidal wave, in any case. He reeled back, but Mutran snatched his wrist and stopped him falling.
“What is it, Sety??” he asked, his voice wavering oddly. Sety grinned at him, though he, too, was confused.
Mutran let him go, but fixed him with a look that served as a warning more than anything else. He left then, and when he slammed the door, Sety fluttered up to a higher platform to think.
Hours- perhaps days, it was hard to tell in the darkness- later, after much thought, Sety worked up the nerve to remove the circlet.
He had tried before, of course; it had delivered a nasty shock that caused him to feel numb for some time and receive a harsh chiding from Mutran. But this time, he was going to remove it, no matter what his instincts screeched at him. The memories had convinced him, had URGED him that there was more to his life, that he was being played. He touched the metal and, with a gulp of breath, yanked it off his head.
The resounding electricity arced savagely through his body and nearly caused him to scream, but he gritted his teeth and shook it off. He was free now.
And now… now he knew.
He was Sety, a Le-Matoran from a small village on the Southern Continent. He had met a Makuta by the name of Mutran, who had questioned him about his love of birds and flying things. When Sety had revealed he envied them, Mutran had promised him a surprise. He had woken in the cage, with the circlet, and a pair of wings stitched to his back. Over the months, the wings had become stronger until they could carry his weight. With the circlet, he had loved every moment of it.
With the circlet, he was a happy, brainless creature. A pet.
He scowled and looked to the cage door. It was locked tight; that was no problem. If he were to, say, hide in the darkness of the top of the cage, Mutran might investigate. Yes, perfect. He would wander in and search for his precious pet. And then… and then Sety could fly out of the cage, or attack; whatever took his fancy.
He heard a click from the door. He grinned and, with a grunt, flapped to the top of the cage and clung to the bars. Now, to wait.
Credit for awesome sig goes to ankyfdarkness! Yay!
Posted May 31 2012 - 08:51 AM
Word Count: 288
Story: The Storm
The Gukko birds soared skyward above the isle of Mata Nui, which below shown with verdant greenery. Neither of the Rahi had a care in the world, they simply flew above the sunlight skies of the isle that had been home to their kind for years.
Some said that these birds had some sixth sense that warned them of coming storms, that they knew when to take cover if the weather grew rough. To see Gukko birds in the sky was a good omen, the Matoran thought, a sign that the weather would remain cool and free of storms.
Below, concealed in the shadows, a tall, well-built being lifted a long rifle. His face twisted in a smirk as he took aim with the powerful blaster and fired. A Gukko bird plummeted earthward, dead. Its partner flew off shrieking into the distance. The being smiled in satisfaction. The Matoran of Mata Nui may know that a rainstorm was not coming, but they hadn’t betted on the coming of a living storm.
A storm that the Dark Hunters like him brought with them wherever they went.
Slipping back into the shadows as though he’d been nothing more than a vapor, the Dark Hunter went about his business. His pathetic contact, the Matoran spy, would be waiting for him at the heart of Le-Wahi, and was a being who valued his privacy. He would be waiting for him to deliver the information about their greatest enemies’ whereabouts.
Picking up the dead Gukko bird corpse and vaporizing it with a burst of energy from his claws, the deadly Dark Hunter moved deep into the forests, pursuing his quarry.
The Gukko birds had been wrong. The storm had come to Mata Nui.
Word Count: 288
Posted May 31 2012 - 11:53 AM
Word Count: 558
Story: Tree-Bound Le Matoran
Tamaru sat in the Kahu hut; his head drooped down, staring at the wooden floor. The rest of the Gukko Squad had left for the Nui Rama hive. For as long as he can remember, Tamaru had wanted to join them, to fly in the skies above Le Wahi, but they all told him, “Sorry, you’re always scared of heights.” One of these days, he thought, I will show them, I am not destined to be tree-bound, and I shall be one of the great wind-riders of the Gukko Squad. He sighed, Tamaru the Le Matoran, always ground bound forever. Or so he thought.
Tamaru heard a loud squawk. Startled, he looked around quickly, taking a while to notice… one lone Kahu. It surely cannot be Kongu’s Ka! He looked down, instantly noticed a small piece of paper in front of Ka. He took a few steps forward, not to distress the Kahu rahi. It ignored him, prompting him to move towards the note faster. He picked it up, reading it,
For years you had wanted to wind-fly with us Gukko Squad, but you never had the courage. Well, I have smart-spoken to Turaga Matau, and we agreed to lend you this Kahu, Ka. Wind-fly him well!
Tamaru couldn’t believe what he read; the Turaga approved him to wind-ride the Kahu?! After a short while of stunned silence, Tamaru sighed, and leaped onto Ka. It took him a short while to fully mount himself. Almost immediately after he had fully mounted himself, the door opened, blinding him with light. The giant bird instinctively knew to walk out of the hut, into the crowd of Le Matoran, all wishing luck to the new Wind-Rider.
They cleared out of Ka’s way, all except for one lone Le Matoran, wielding two lightstones. Tamaru’s heart jumped into his throat, he instantly knew… This is it. I am really going to wind-fly!
As the Le Matoran lifted the lightstones up and down, Ka flapped his wings slowly in sync, then speeding up. A loud noise filled the air, rising in tone. Then suddenly, the Le Matoran lifted his arms, Ka’s eyes glowed, and its wings turned green. The Le Matoran threw the lightstones down, and Ka sped forward at top speed and left the tree village of Le Koro.
Tamaru woke with a start; he was still in the Kahu hut. He looked around, searching for Ka or any sign of the Gukko Squad. The hut was entirely empty, except for him; even the Kahu stall was empty. The lone Le Matoran ran out of the hut quite quickly. He didn’t stop running until he came to a halt at the edge of Le Koro.
He looked downwards, the swamp of Le Wahi below looked a thousand bios tall. Any leaf-runner would find jumping down and wind-sprint across the home-realm easy, surely if he cannot windfly, maybe he could do that instead. Tamaru just stood there, his foot moved slightly across the edge. I can do it, he thought to himself, I can do it, I can do it, I can…
Tamaru let out a long sigh, moving his foot back onto safety. He turned around, walking back into the Le Koro square. He shook his head as he accepted his fate, as a Tree Bound Le Matoran.
Posted May 31 2012 - 05:22 PM
Word Count: 504
They had come in the dead of night while Kudos and Pakha had slept. When Kudos awoke in the morning, the deathly silence of Metru Nui weighing upon his audio receptors, the Coliseum in the distance was lined with webbing. He shook Pakha from his sleep, and together they traipsed inland through Po-Metru’s sand and ghost towns into the streets about the Coliseum.
In hindsight, going closer to the webs had been a horrid idea. Kudos, however, had no time to think as his legs churned so fast he thought he might fly.
The Po-Matoran rounded a bend, hoping Pakha was right behind him. The street ahead was empty. He bolted for an open door and crouched in the shadow of the doorframe. Pakha followed a second later, kneeling beside Kudos on the cold, metal floor.
“Visorak,” said Pakha between gasps. He was an Onu-Matoran Archivist; memorizing dangerous Rahi and not being in shape had been part of his job description when Metru Nui was intact. “Spiderlike creatures. Their venom is a highly unstable mutagen that causes massive changes in the subject when—”
The Visorak on the ceiling behind the two Matoran dropped to the floor — clank — and lunged. Kudos fell to the side, out the door. Pakha let out a scream. Half-blinded from shock, Kudos could but half run, half stumble down the street in flight.
Another scream echoed down the lane; it was cut off halfway through. Kudos’s heart stammered, but adrenaline kept his legs moving. His vision was blurry, but his eyes didn’t feel wet. Maybe they were numb, as his feet had lost all feeling through relentless pounding on concrete.
Focus! he roared at himself. With an effort, he blinked away the moisture in his eyes (sweat or tears, he couldn’t tell which) and darted across the intersection.
He skidded to a halt when a Visorak dropped to the ground before him. The click-clickety-click of other Visorak legs reverberated in his head. The whirr of a Visorak spinner was the last thing he heard.
* * *
When Kudos came to, he couldn’t move his limbs. Did he even have limbs?
He opened his eyes and, comforted he hadn’t lost his sight, craned his head as best he could through the small gap in the adhesive strands wrapped about him. He was suspended in the inside corner of an abandoned building; shards of glass lay on the floor from the Great Cataclysm, juxtaposed with the living figures of Visorak.
“Pakha?” he called.
—or rather, meant to call. What he actually said was a growl that only faintly resembled his friend’s name. Feeling returned like pins and needles across Kudos’s skin when an answering growl emanated from above his perch. He struggled against his bonds—
They broke. He had just enough time to be surprised before his Hordika instincts kicked in: Run, they said, and run hard. He complied without thinking. Behind him, Pakha let out a similar growl and followed Kudos out the door.
This time, the Visorak didn’t follow.
Posted May 31 2012 - 07:04 PM
Word Count: 578
Story: The Test
“Okay,” said the Le-Matoran instructor, sitting in the passenger’s seat beside Kongu. “Have you quick-checked the levitation and weight disks?”
Kongu nodded. “First thing I quick-checked, instructor-sir.”
The instructor scribbled on his pad. “The chutes?”
“Full,” Kongu answered. “And capped-blocked, too.”
The instructor scratched something else down. “Levers and pulleys fully operational?”
“Completely, instructor-sir,” said Kongu, pointing at the pulleys before him. “I had my engineer-friend look them over beforehand.”
“Emergency lights and radar systems in proper condition?”
“Of course, instructor-sir.”
“All safety procedures followed?”
“To the letter, instructor-sir.”
“Then let’s commence-begin the flight test.”
Kongu smiled and nodded and turned to the controls. Although Kongu was careful not to show it, his nerves were wracking him so badly that he almost forgot what to do. If he passed this test, he’d become a licensed airship pilot. If he failed . . . well, he could always be a chute monitor, Kongu supposed.
All right, Kongu thought. Just need to pull-grab this pulley and up-high we’ll go.
The Le-Matoran pulled the pulley toward himself. The airship lurched, almost throwing the instructor off his seat, though thankfully he was securely tied down thanks to his seat belt.
“Quick-sorry about that,” said Kongu, hastily letting go of the pulley to turn his attention to the instructor.
That caused the ship to lurch back, knocking the instructor’s skull back against his seat’s head. “Ow! Keep your eyes on the sky, student!”
“Yes, instructor-sir,” said Kongu, turning his attention back to the controls.
This time, the airship flew although Kongu noticed out of the corner of his eye that the instructor was frowning and scribbling something on his pad. Kongu tried to ignore the instructor. His friend, Matau, had told him that as long as he kept his cool, Kongu would be able to pass.
The airship was now in the sky, but it was not moving. Kongu had yet to unleash the capped proto chutes because he was busily making sure that the airship was steady and aiming forward. He’d heard tales of careless students who’d uncapped the chutes when the airship was aiming slightly toward the ground, which usually resulted in a bloody, messy death for everyone involved.
The sensors indicated that the airship was stable, so Kongu said to the instructor, “Which way do I go-fly, instructor-sir?”
“Go-fly north,” said the instructor, pointing straight ahead. “Just don’t-“
In his eagerness to obey the instructor’s commands, Kongu immediately pulled the lever that uncapped the chutes. He opened them a little too wide, however, for the ship shot forward at dangerous speeds. They were flying straight toward a building and would have crashed into it had the instructor not immediately flipped the emergency break switch just in time.
Without warning, the airship stopped so abruptly that Kongu was thrown forward and hit the controls. Shaking his head, Kongu looked at the instructor and smiled sheepishly.
“So . . . did I pass-succeed the test?” said Kongu, although he knew the answer even before the instructor answered.
“No,” said the instructor, shaking his head. “You failed-loss. Land the airship and we’ll speak-discuss your future later.”
Kongu nodded unhappily and landed the airship, though this time he was careful to do things right so they wouldn’t crash into the ground.
As Kongu and the instructor exited the airship, Kongu decided that maybe being a chute monitor wouldn’t be such a bad job after all. Would be easier than flying airships, at any rate.
"If people only knew how hard I work to gain my mastery it wouldn't seem so wonderful at all." -Michelangelo
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(BIONICLE: The Legend Imploded Completed 05/11/13)
(What I Should Have Said Posted 12/20/12)
(The Final Answer Posted 02/18/13)
Posted May 31 2012 - 07:56 PM
Word Count: 576
Story: Be Shrewd with Deals
As the first bite sinks into the firm flesh of the green fruit, Shara doesn’t notice the flash of bewilderment that flits across lime eyes. She does notice however, the display of curiosity that is a touch too exaggerated to be completely genuine and knows instantly that the bewilderment must have taken place right before. The organic snorted. Really now, he should be used to her devouring methods. It’s not like she hasn’t eaten in front of them frequently enough.
Putting more effort in smacking her lips and less in keeping saliva in, the descendant of apes swiveled her brown, wet eyes at inquisitive optics.
Blinking, the lit optics dimmed sheepishly as the emerald being carefully scooted back from the dripping drool.
“Ever-Sorry, did not think little Shara would chew-crunch bula berry.”
“Dude, this is the only way I get energy from food.” she stated dryly.
“And what is that word after bula?”
“Ah” the tall guardian tilted his masked face up, waving his hand in thought, “a type of fruit --” He halted before grimacing. “ I don’t know how to explain in -- how do you say, English?”
Shara smirked, shrugging her shoulders. “A type of fruit is good for now. ”
A pause, in which both creatures quietly enjoyed their respective activities on the balcony of the coliseum: one was calmly gnawing on a bland piece of fruit and the other was watching the masticating with amusement.
She continued to munch on the bula fruit while grunting, “hm?”
“Does the bula... taste good?”
The human cocked her head. “Not bad,” she swallowed, “just a little bland.”
“Yah, fruit here has weaker taste.”
The toa hummed distractedly as he gazed at the morning sky a few shades too pale. It looked absolutely massive from high atop the coliseum’s towers.
Speaking of which.
“Hey, Lewa. You mind telling me why you dragged me up here?”
Lewa stared at the human in puzzlement. “Mind telling? Shara, you speak in word-mess!”
After a lengthy lecture on why a mind only thinks and not speaks (much less tell anyone anything) and how Shara had much to learn in speaking Matoran, did Lewa bother to answer her question.
“You will learn to wind-fly today!”
When his exclamation and spread arms of excitement was only met with extreme skepticism, the toa of air placed his air katanas, hilt up, onto the tiled floor, leaning his body weight against them in exasperation and asked why she was so bothered. Shara’s eyes flickered towards the swords, the sky, and Lewa in question dubiously.
“How about this,” she licked up the last bit of bula berry juice as she stood up, before continuing, “If you can take energy from this,” here she brandished another green fruit, “Then I will gladly learn to ‘wind-fly’.” As the spirit of air grabbed for the bula berry, Shara quickly drew it away.
“You have to eat it,” smirking triumphantly, she mimed taking a ferocious bite, “all of it.”
Toa Lewa narrowed his eyes at this but took the fruit. A staring contest ensued between fruit and biomechanical being.
Just as she was about to pat herself on the back, Shara heard a mouth watering shunk as Lewa contemplatively began to chew. A smile slowly crept up his mask.
“This is not bad-taste.”
“Not bad-taste at all.”
Shara stared listlessly at the decreasing fruit in Lewa’s clutches. Her day was definitely ruined.
Yay for writing in in the middle of the night!
and I've got graduation tomorrow... hahaha, I'm a fool
Edited by VeoiTheRascal, May 31 2012 - 08:00 PM.
Posted May 31 2012 - 08:06 PM
Word Count: 566
He should have known.
But not really. He seemed to have lost his way, but he didn’t have a way to lose.
Before him stretched an expanse of pale ground swirling with grey dust. Somewhere high above, he could see an imposing grey shell. Light filtered in through a sickening crack high above, about which moved several smaller beings. Not a single block of the precious solid protodermis would go to waste.
Despite this, he was sure that they were too high up to see him, even though his color – green – would have stood out against the dismal landscape. There would be no assistance from them. Instead, the Toa walked across the area, toward the only landmark visible; the smoking remains of a dead volcano. Before it, he reached a yawning chasm, out of which a vile stench reached his nostrils.
Nonetheless, he plunged in, jets on his back firing as his armor adjusted to the new environment. His eyesight sharpened, showing him a bruised, battered hulk of metal.
He remembered the forcefield; but it was gone. The old gate was ajar at an odd angle; like so many other things it was broken, shattered by the waves of savage rule.
It was dark within, but that didn’t stop him; it took only a few seconds for his armor to adjust. Besides, these tunnels were old friends, mostly free of wreckage and debris. His body glided gracefully through them, headed for no particular destination. For once, it felt good to be here, to be in a familiar place after his recent experience. Mostly, it just felt good to fly.
But the tunnel was too short. Soon he emerged into an expansive cavern, ringed by gaping holes of shredded metal, like the bulk that had been raked by giant’s claws. The floor was littered with wreckage, but the impressive features of the power conduit remained, waiting for a call that would not come again.
But that wasn’t what he had came for. The thought dawned on him, soaring over this sea of memory. He dived off into a side chamber, viewing the old hangar. A flash of red caught his eyes. He landed, sending twin dust clouds into the air; such a thing demanded walking. Touching its side, he swiped off a thick coating of dust to reveal a name.
You know, I have fought many hard-battles lately, thought Lewa, Toa Nuva of Air. It’s time for some party-fun!
* * *
Garan heaved the final load of supplies into place. It had been a hard day of getting the tools they needed out of Voya Nui, but the Spherus Magna sand stalkers had been most helpful in this regard. Now all they needed was to get the pack animals and themselves out of this area before nightfall.
“Hey!” said Balta. “Look at that!” A huge flying vehicle emerged from a nearby void, blasting through the crack in the sky’s widest point.
“it is fair and just” said Kazi.
“A large package is fine for a large thing, but if it’s not needed, a small package will do better” said Velika. Garan looked on; he could note the glow in the Matoran’s eyes, the plans of a true inventor. He heard a whoop in the distance. Maybe we don’t have to be always on the run, just trying to survive. Maybe we can do more. So much more…
Posted May 31 2012 - 09:02 PM
Word Count: 420
Story: I Didn't Sign Up for This
The moment I stepped off the elevator to Le-Koro I knew something was wrong. The place, simply put, seemed abandoned – the usually lively Le-Matoran were nowhere to be seen; instead of their singing voices, the only sound was the whistle of the wind. All that remained to suggest they’d ever been there was a single flute, haphazardly discarded at the center of the square.
I bent over and picked the instrument up, examining it. I lifted it to my lips, played a few notes-
The Koro sprung to life, dozens of Matoran leaping from hiding places, regarding me curiously. Well, that was odd. At least-
A droning hum filled the air, growing louder by the second, cutting off any chance at conversation. Turning, I saw what looked to be dark clouds billowing up in the distance, approaching rapidly. There was a flurry of movement as the Le-Matoran jumped to action, racing off in all directions. Some ran to the edge of the platform and – leaped off!?
Dark forms swooped up from beneath the platform of the village – it took me a few moments to realize that these were Gukko, the Matoran’s mounts. I chuckled softly. Well, those vineswingers could try their crazy stunts if they wanted.
One Matoran had remained behind, calling for my attention. I quickly ran over to him. Kongu, he said his name was. Evidently the Turaga had been taken by Nui-Rama, and the oversized bugs were now attacking the rest of them.
“Good luck, then,” I said. “I wish I could help, but-”
Kongu’s face broke into a grin. “Excellent, my friend! I myself am in want-need of a second!”
It took me a moment to realize what he meant. “Ohh, no,” I protested. In my mind, Ta-Matoran belonged firmly planted on the ground. The air was for Matoran of that element.
Kongu, however, would not be deterred. He whistled for his own mount and threw me atop it despite my protests – he was surprisingly strong for a Matoran of his build. “C’mon, firespitter!” he cried. “You can throw a disc, right?”
“Well then, throw them! It’s no different than doing it from the ground, unless by ‘different’ you mean ‘better’.” He grinned wildly, and a smile involuntarily broke on my face as well. His enthusiasm was infectious.
And then we were charging for the edge of the platform and leaping off and-
In an instant, all my doubts evaporated – the sensation of flight, of soaring above the lowly earth...there is nothing like it.
Posted May 31 2012 - 09:12 PM
EDIT: Wait, really Jello Pickles? I only just saw right after I posted. *facepalm* At least changing my title by a couple words so it isn't identical in that respect. ...We're probably going to hate each other a little bit for awhile...ugh. I'm sorry man, I got the idea completely independently; I swear.
Member Name: Maganar
Word Count: 600
Story: Fight-or-Flight Response
All around me, the ground shakes. Structures shift and the dirt beneath my feet seems ready to rupture. It’s coming back to finish the job. I figure I’m the only survivor of the last attack and it’s clearly fixing to change that. I see Matoran scrambling to leave. A mass exodus has begun, but they won’t be able to fully evacuate before it arrives.
I travel back within my mind to the first time I encountered it. Several hours ago, my Toa team had been scouting in the forest beyond the village when the ground began to seethe just as it is now. We panicked. And then it rose.
This monstrous beast exploded forth from the soil, a gaping maw affixed to a lengthy neck. Tentacles, presumably appendages of the creature, perforated the soil in the vicinity of the abomination. Adrenaline overtook our more rational thinking and fight-or-flight response overrode any other thought processes… And flight was the dominant response.
We fell back and regrouped. It was only when we calmed down that we realized that the Toa of Plasma in our squad was nowhere to be seen. It was obvious that he hadn’t escaped. Once we overcame the shock, we began to violently debate. What was it? What should we do about it? Could it be taken down?
It didn’t give us a chance to find answers. It struck again before we had completely recuperated from our distress after the first attack. The earth opened wide and the monstrosity lifted itself from the abyss below.
Fight or flight.
The Toa of Water in our team looks at me, tells me to run and warn the village. They need to know as soon as possible so they can escape to the safety of the coastline before it arrives. She tells me that she and the rest of our team will slow it down, but her eyes betray it all. She doesn’t expect any of them to survive.
Fight or flight: my choice. If I fight, I might provide the necessary support to save them all… but if we lose regardless… the village will go unwarned. The casualties will be extreme. If I flee, I can guarantee they gave their lives for something.
I choose flight.
So here I am. I got the warning out, and the village is escaping. Yet, I’m devastated. My team is dead, and all because I chose flight. They could have had a chance if I’d fought… but I didn’t. I look around. To my dismay, I realize that not enough villagers have evacuated. I need more time, but my team has already paid the ultimate price to give me as much as possible.
Fight or flight… I’m done with flight. They need time. I choose to fight.
Once again, it rises up from underground. Sickle-shaped teeth abound from the ravenous mouth. A primeval roar resounds through the village. Elemental bolts streak towards it and tentacles thrash me. The fight is lengthy… just lengthy enough. I look around and see that the village deserted. The Matoran escaped.
My inattention as I survey the village costs me. A tentacle hurls me to the ground. I’m battered. The physical trauma is extensive… too extensive. I know that I am slipping out of this realm of reality and into whatever life lies beyond.
For a moment, I see her standing over my body. The Water Toa from my team. I’m not sure if she alone survived the last battle, or if she’s guiding me into the afterlife.
I don’t care.
All that matters is that I chose against flight.
Edited by Maganar, May 31 2012 - 09:17 PM.
Now released, Lightfall's spinoff, The Sordid Shafts:
...everything will change for the war-torn city of Modos.
Posted May 31 2012 - 09:51 PM
Word Count: 596
Story: Impossible Dream
Tamaru hated the height. He truly despised both it and every facet of it. But, mainly, he abhorred it because it was just so ...
... well, it was just so high. That was the problem. Height was high. Surely that wasn't one of the most profound statements to be thought by any Le-Matoran in history, but it was true.
That didn't make it any less scary.
It wasn't always like this, though. Why else would Tamaru have his sights set on being an airship pilot? As a Le-Matoran, his inception did not come with the inherent oxymoron of hating heights - rather, something had to do it for him.
Unfortunately, he was a Matoran who valued first impressions, and a Matoran whose first impressions of things pretty much defined his view of that particular thing. Like height. He hated heights because of flight - flight being the gateway to height.
When he first came into being, seemingly all he could set his thoughts on was flight. It would be awesome, he thought, to fly around in an airship like the ones that constantly circled kios above Le-Metru. The freedom, the exhilarating thrill ...
So, like every Le-Matoran before him, he found an airship as it was moored to the ground and asked about how he could fly in one. The operator, who was nice enough to him, kindly let his dreams of flying in one of them down by informing him of the fierce competition of the job. There were only so many airships, you see, and pretty much every Le-Matoran wanted them. Only the best got in, and that was only with a little bit of luck.
Tamaru was unfazed by this, and, thanking the operator for his time, proceeded to sneak aboard a craft carrying cargo - sails for Ga-Metru boats, in fact. The interior was spacious, even with the mountains of boxes and occasional loose sails that were arranged therein.
He was exhilarated by this, but tucked inside the depths of the airship, there wasn't much he could see - and the sight, no doubt, was the most breathtaking part of any air excursion. Even a first-time flyer such as he could figure this out; it was obvious to anyone who put much thought into it.
Looking over - and unaware that the ship had smoothly taken off from its mooring - he spotted a hatch that let to the outside.
Tamaru was blissfully ignorant of the fact that there was nothing between him and the ground far below if he removed it. He also had no idea whatsoever that the pressure difference between inside and out would be dangerous ...
He clicked open the hatch.
At once, the entire airship lurched over to the side and down, making Tamaru weightless as the hatch flung open. Air rushed out of the ship, equalizing pressure with the atmosphere that surrounded it. The pile of boxes tumbled over, crashing on towards Tamaru. Klaxons of all timbres shouted out, drowning Tamaru's senses as he struggled to avoid the tsunami of boxes in the fluctuating gravity of the tilting craft.
Fortunately, mercifully, the boxes had rushed past. Tamaru had managed to not get impaled by the boxes' newfound velocity. But the pilot and copilot worked diligently to right the ship, they found success, and the boxes tumbled down again towards a now thoroughly frightened Le-Matoran.
There was only one thing he could do. Tamaru grabbed a sail that had floated next to him ... and jumped.
As the sail inflated and he came down in the shadow of the now-landing airship, one thought kept going through his head:
I hate flying,
Posted May 31 2012 - 09:57 PM
Member Name: Grimoire Albastru
Word Count: 576
In his dreams, he flew. To Masirov, the ground was a distant memory, a reminder of all that had once been his. But now, when freed from the restraints of reality, he would high above it all and into far this bright, idealistic new future.
The wind would charge head-on into the Matoran’s Kanohi, offering the only resistance to his aspirations, but with a cheerful grin he would push it all aside and glide through these protestations. He sailed beneath a blazing blue sky and over a lifeless dull ground, caught in the struggle between the two, yet nestled from harm by the nurturing grip of the element of air.
But then, as all dreams do, his fade back into the vacant void from which they had materialised and are replaced with the cold, authoritative hold reality. Masirov gradually rises back to his world and drearily blinks the light from the sun that streams from the windows out of his eyes.
He tries to recall the details of his dream, but it has departed his memory like sand from the grip of his fist. But the emotions that accompanied it are fresh and he feels a curious feeling of loss deep within him. Yet not the loss of something dear to him, but the loss of something he had never had, nor may ever receive. The resignment to the mundanity of the world in which he lived.
With a heavy heart, he sighs and lifts himself from his bed. Masirov looks over to the bench he uses to place his tools when he has no need of them, and walks resignedly towards it. It appears as though it will be yet another day at work for him. Just like the day before this one, and no doubt just as it will be on the day after this as well.
He slings his pack around his shoulder and exits his hut, glancing up at the burning sun in the distance as he does so. He raises his hand over his Kanohi to shield himself from its intense glare, but keeps his gaze locked on the blue sky around it all the same. All around him was the same, colourless brown rocks, yet in the sky a source of blue rolled forwards forevermore, never ceasing, until the very world itself would stop. Why is it that the most beautiful part of Po-Koro would be the area that he could not reach?
But that would always be the way, he decides as he mulls over his feelings on the short trek to work. He glances back up at the sky and sees two birds caught in the warm breeze. Perhaps they were content with their lives, or maybe they yearned for something different? To swim through the ocean, caught in the currents? Did the fish long to walk on land, just as he wishes to soar through the sky?
He smiles to himself and shakes his head, though no joy accompanies this gesture. No, no matter what it is that any of these creatures want, their fate has already been decided for them. All they ever are and all they ever will be is decided upon by the skills they are born with. It is the Le-Matoran’s duty to slice through the wind on the back of a Gukko bird. And the Po-Matoran’s skills are to carve rock apart under the heat of a beating sun, and nothing more.
"I have seen my dreams laid out before me, then taken away just as quickly."
"I have been shown fear in a handful of dust."
Chapter four - Desire
Posted May 31 2012 - 10:19 PM
Theme: Bionicle: Flight
Word Count: 573
Story: Black Spike Sentry
A smile touches my lips as my blow leaves a dent in the rusty flap of sheet metal emblazoned with the symbol of the Fire Tribe. This red-armored warrior had better hope his tribe is stronger than his shield. Or just him.
The Glatorian was fighting a losing battle and he knew it. Perhaps his broken body will serve as a potent enough warning to his brothers, a warning that says not to trespass and not to pry. This poor unfortunate has been carried too far from his homestead. It's been a long and harrowing journey, from the look of it. He won't have to be bothered making the return trip.
He doesn't know it yet, but he will know soon enough.
My club whistles through the air, matching the keening of cold unfeeling wind as it wails through the canyons and crevices in the mountains. It meets a sloppy block, weaker than the last and an irritated curse slips out of the same lips that my smile of impending victory had lit upon only moments ago.
"Why can't you save us both time," I growl, stomping forwards as the Glatorian stumbles back. I ram him with my shield back towards the edge of the cliff face. "And just jump now?"
"And miss out on all this fun? I don't think so," He tries to laugh weakly in the face of danger, in my face, and fails utterly. He is young and full of life, for the time being, that is, and ridiculous. Who actually says those kinds of things in the middle of a life-or-death struggle atop a mountain? He's probably been raised with too many war-hero stories about the Core War.
We're dancing about on a small precipice which is my sentry post. Foolishly enough, the warrior thought he could surprise me here. One of the majestic black spike peaks stands guard over me.
My studded club, an extension of my arm really, answers for me. It lands a heavy, thumping blow in the Glatorian's side that was left unguarded. Amateurs. Cracks in the brittle desert-worn armor jag out to meet me.
He feels his armor give beneath my blow, I see it in his eyes. In a panic, he fires one of his Thornax. It deflects off my shield like he'd aimed it there, sailing over the edge of the cliff into oblivion.
"Did you hear that? Your Thornax fruit is calling for you to follow it," I tell him, again driving my shield into his own, curbing the distance between him and the edge to a mere couple feet.
Finally, the Glatorian sees that he is done for. He lowers his shield and empty launcher. He is trembling like a baby bird from helmet to armored feet, clearly exhausted. He looks at me with wide eyes, and we both know that Skrall know no mercy.
I hold his insolent gaze in my iron one, shield and club raised. I do not see fear in his eyes, which is admirable, but not uncommon.
"Make it quick," He says to me, not begging, not even asking politely.
I shrug, and step up to him, placing my shield between the two of us.
"Now why would I want to do that?" I return, and give him a shove with my shield just hard enough to send him toppling and howling to his death far below.
"Fly, my baby bird. Fly away home."
Edited by Zosia Darr, May 31 2012 - 10:29 PM.
~ ~ ~
Posted May 31 2012 - 10:37 PM
An enormous aircraft rolls out onto the tarmac, a gigantic wing in appearance, a minuscule cockpit in the center between two rocket engines, two more engines at the wingtips. In the cockpit sits a Toa of Air, checking the controls, reading the dials; behind him sits a Glatorian, checking and re-checking calculations. Even the tiniest mistake will be devastating.
“Artakha-1, come in.” The Toa responds via his Mask of Communication: “Artakha-1 reporting, all systems are ready-go.”
Matoran and Agori watch from a safe distance as the wing takes its place on the runway. Toa use their powers to create holograms all over the planet: no inhabitant of the Spherus Magna would miss this historical event.
“Ten.” The final countdown begins, a monotone voice echoing through the mountains.
“Nine.” In a tall control tower, a Toa of Ice checks over the computing equipment.
“Eight.” Matoran finish their inspection of the rocket engines just in time, scattering as the engines ignite.
“Seven.” The pilot and navigator check and recheck equipment, seat belts, calculations.
“Six.” The great wing starts down the runway, picking up speed.
“Five.” The Toa pilot adjusts the flaps for optimum lift.
“Four.” Great flames spring from the rocket engines as Artakha accelerates.
“Three.” Excitement creeps into the announcer’s voice.
“Two.” Engineers hold their breath.
“One.” Matoran and Agori gasp as it lifts off, rocket engines angled downwards.
“We have liftoff!” The excited voice sweeps around the planet. Matoran and Agori cheer, but this is only the beginning. Engineers in the Artakha-1 Exit and Entry Unit watch as the wing fades into the distance, their thoughts edged with doubt. Would Artakha-1 make it out of the atmosphere? More importantly, would it be able to reenter?
“Artakha-1 reporting, an easy-smooth flight so far. Now entering Phase Two.” The wingtips begin to extend, widening, yielding more surface area and providing ample lift in the thin upper atmosphere. Plates slide into place, fitting seamlessly in the protosteel wing. Using his elemental powers, the Toa pressurizes the cabin. "Phase Two successful, over."
Artakha-1 stays her course, wings expanding at crucial points, still generating lift. Matoran engineers grow tense, anticipating Phase Three: leaving the atmosphere behind and entering orbit. Will the Agori craftsmanship hold out?
Now everything relies on the strength of the rocket engines, the precision of the pilot, and the accuracy of the navigator. The engines pivot ever so slightly, just the perfect angle, and the wing, now returning to it's original size, has left the atmosphere behind. The engines cut off, allowing Spherus Magna to pull Artakha-1 into orbit.
Toa and Glatorian peer out of the shielded cabin windows at the magnificent, yet minuscule, planet below. Removing their harnesses, they float freely above their seats. "Artakha-1 reporting: we have arrived, and what a funny-strange sensation it is...over."
Once again, the engineering team breathes. Exit Process all clear. But now they must prepare for the Reentry Process, the most dangerous part of the mission.
The pilot and navigator check and recheck equipment. This is the most crucial moment, if Reentry fails, two lives, thousands of hours work, and countless resources are lost. The Toa adjusts the rockets, preparing for a gentle Reentry. Holding its course, Artakha-1 smoothly cuts into the atmosphere.
"Come in, Artakha."
"We have detected a system malfunction: break chute dispatcher reports a jam."
"...Mata Nui help us..."
The fireball is visible as an Agori hands a prewritten speech to the Turaga.
"Dear friends, we have suffered a great loss tonight..."
Word count: 600
So many hollow pixels...
Posted May 31 2012 - 10:39 PM
Word Count: 600
The reformation of a planet is not a pretty thing.
It may seem simple to onlookers; a bit of mask magic here, a giant robot there, a few shiny lights, and presto: one Spherus Magna, made to order. Breathtaking vistas and awe-inspiring oceans available at no additional cost.
But a planet has enough going on beneath the surface when it’s had millions of years to settle down; one that’s just been clobbered together by sheer force of will is going to be doing some heavy lifting behind the scenes to make sure said breathtaking vistas don’t collapse under their own weight, possibly into the awe-inspiring oceans.
Which was why Onua, Toa Nuva of Earth, had taken it upon himself to launch a one-Toa surveying expedition of the caves beneath what would, all going well, one day be New Atero. It took someone for whom life belowground was more natural than life above it to ensure there were no unpleasant geological surprises waiting beneath the surface.
“Listen, Onua, I know you can dark-see and all, but have you ever though it might not be a bad idea to bring something a little brighter than a torch? Maybe Tahu or something?”
It was slightly unfortunate that Lewa, Toa Nuva of Air and Onua’s closest friend, had insisted on coming along for the ride.
Onua continued moving forward. “I did warn you, brother. There is nothing as dark as an unexplored cavern, and there is nothing more foolhardy than burdening yourself with extra gear. If there is a cave-in, you must be able to move as quickly as possible,” he said in the voice of someone who knows that any opportunity to say ‘I told you so’ will be accompanied by a swift and painful death. “I would advise you to turn back, except that you refused the first three times and we are now far too deep for you to find your way back.”
Lewa snorted. “Oh, have a little faith, Onua. I’m a better path-finder than you think.”
“Perhaps in the jungle, brother. But I’d rather not add another count to the number of times I’ve had to rescue you.” Before Lewa could respond, Onua halted and ran his hand against the walls of the tunnel they were in. He frowned and gestured to Lewa to come forward; the two advanced cautiously.
Onua’s hand shot out in front of Lewa, stopping him a step away from the edge of the underground canyon they now stood at. “Underground river,” he murmured. “We can’t continue any further this way; we’ll have to search for a tunnel around.”
“Anything across from us?”
Onua squinted into the darkness. “There are openings on the far wall, but I can’t see any natural bridges. As I said, we’ll have to find another way across.” Beside him, he heard Lewa stepping back from the edge. Onua turned to follow, at which point the Toa of Air smashed into him at high speed, grabbing him in his arms, and sailed over the edge, whooping happily, his Miru Nuva glowing. Onua hung crazily from his friend, head tilted down just enough to see the massive drop beneath them.
They landed with a crash in one of the openings on the canyon’s wall. Still chuckling, Lewa stood and offered Onua his hand, who took it with a sigh.
“I suppose if I tell you that was borderline suicidal, it’ll only make you happier you did it?”, he asked wearily.
Lewa’s grin would be visible even if Onua wasn’t used to the dark. “A little faith, Onua. We Le-Korans swear by it.”
Posted May 31 2012 - 11:03 PM
Word Count: 599
Story: The Gift of Flight
The setting sun cast a crimson light across the horizon, the combination of the light and scenery creating a breathtaking scene that few ever had the chance to behold. One of those select few was currently staring into the sky, his orange eyes attempting to pierce through the heavens and see what lay beyond. He remained that way until the sun disappeared completely, at which point he awoke from his reverie and began the trip back to the place he called home.
For a while, he walked in silence. However, as he neared his “home” a weary voice cried out to him from the darkness.
“Ah, there you are! I’d hoped to find you before you left, but was afraid I’d missed you.”
The Toa looked at the older being, an indecipherable look in his eyes. The wizened figure was the closest thing to family he had left, but he still had no intentions of being treated like a child.
“Master, with all due respect-“
The elderly individual lifted up a hand in interruption and said, “I’ve a gift for you.”
The Toa bit his tongue, afraid that out of his irritation he might say something he would later regret. However, he couldn’t help but be curious as to what this “gift” was.
“I spent a long while contemplating on what to give you before your departure, and this is what I eventually decided upon. If you insist on calling yourself by this new name, then I think it’s only fitting that you’re given this.”
From with his robes, the being pulled out a Kanohi mask. Its visage was fierce, almost like that of a monster’s, but it had a certain streamlined quality to it nonetheless. Although difficult to properly examine in the dim lighting, the Toa immediately felt as if the mask was perfect in every way. Its shape, its red and black coloring, everything about it simply seemed like it had been made for him.
Noticing his student’s reaction, the elderly being smiled gently. “I’m glad you like it,” he said, “but the true value of a Kanohi lies not in its appearance but its ability.”
Although both of them knew that, he had felt the need to say it anyway. There had been times when his student had become a little obsessed with some detail and ended up completely missing the point of the main lesson. Of all the lessons he had taught, this one was possibly the most important, and the one he was most determined to get through to his pupil.
“The ability of this particular mask is flight, making it a Kadin. I’m sure you’re familiar with its power well enough to not need any further explanation.”
The Toa nodded, his mind already imagining what he could do with this new ability. A whole new style of combat lay stretched out before him, and he was eager to begin exploring it.
His mentor, however, had other ideas of how he should use his new mask. The hope had been that once his student experienced some of the joys the world had to offer, he would give up on his path of revenge-laden “justice”. To him, the Kadin was a gift, a chance to see the world in a brand new way. In a way, he was right.
The Toa thanked his master for the gift and, after placing the mask upon his face, soared off into the night, his flying unsteady due to inexperience.
“Go, Salamander. May my gift help you soar amongst the light and keep you from falling into the darkness...”
Posted May 31 2012 - 11:05 PM
Word Count: 536
Story: Mata Nui's Flight
Mata Nui flew.
He flew into the void. He flew away from the shattered remains of Spherus Magna, planet of his creation.
As he flew, his newly-awakened mind reviewed what he knew of the universe.
I am Mata Nui, creation of the Great Beings, all that remains of the once-great spirit of Spherus Magna. Within me exist myriad forms of artificial life, like myself...but inferior... that labor to keep me well and properly functioning. I am to maintain the proper balance of their universe and watch over their well-being, for my own is dependent upon theirs.
The world of the Great Beings has been destroyed in a vast Shattering. It is my purpose to repair it. But the remains will not be stable enough for re-formation for approximately 100,043.07 years. In the interval. I am to observe other regions of the universe, gathering information for the aid of Spherus Magna and the Great Beings.
My immediate objective is flight. Then, I shall begin my observations. When the time is right, I will return.
The forty-million foot tall robot jetted into space.
From their refuge, three Great Beings - the three who had first conceived of Mata Nui, who had overseen and developed every stage of his creation - watched the sight in awe.
Their world was in ruins, their Agori peoples destitute, and they felt that strongly. But as they watched Mata Nui, a new emotion temporarily overrode their grief and guilt.
"It flies," one muttered incredulously. "Just as we planned it to."
"Our greatest creation," the second said. "It works. It works perfectly in every detail."
"A forty million foot tall robot," whispered the last. "And it flies."
They gazed at Mata Nui's flight, filled, amid the sorrow of the Shattering, with the pride of successful creators.
Unknown to them, another being, within Mata Nui, was feeling the same pride. He could not oversee its movements, in his new identity. But everything was going just as they had hoped it would. All was well. Even he could tell that.
We did it, he thought. He's flying by now.
And then he moved back to tasks, his assumed life, and his observations, as Mata Nui flew on.
Lesovikk, Toa of Air, flew through the sky.
I can almost feel the presence of the Great Spirit, he thought. He flies with me, and I with him.
A sudden downdraft caught him. Still a novice in the ways of his element, he was nearly dashed to the ground - before another gust carried him upward again.
"Thank Mata Nui," he gasped, recovering his poise in the air.
Lesovikk, and Mata Nui, flew on.
Mata Nui, creation of the Great Beings, salvation of Spherus Magna, Great Spirit of the Matoran Universe, flew on. All was well within him, and his great heart was filled with raw energy. That was good, for upon him depended the welfare of two worlds.
But within that heart, in a perpetual stasis, slept six.
Six nanobots of Mata Nui's many subjects. Six pieces of the grand machine that was the robot. Six heroes of the Great Spirit.
They slept, waiting, lest Mata Nui's flight ever came to a halt.
Posted May 31 2012 - 11:43 PM
As usual, any interpretation of the theme is valid, but it must be a BIONICLE story
and it must adhere to the rules in the first post.
June 2nd, 11:59 AM EST
Edited by Velox, Jun 01 2012 - 01:48 AM.
"As a writer you ask yourself to dream while awake." ~ Aimee Bender
Posted Jun 01 2012 - 12:14 AM
Posted Jun 01 2012 - 12:59 AM
I've joined the BZPRPG. See my profiles here.
See the collection of my writings as well as previews of those to come in The Scarabax Library.
Posted Jun 01 2012 - 01:00 AM
Member Name: xccj
Word Count: 596
Story: Tamaru Takes To The Skies
“It’s Kongu!” Tamaru exclaimed. “Kongu!”
Kongu and his Kewa bird gained altitude, having crushed the Nui Rama that had threatened the Chronicler’s Company. And he wasn’t the only new arrival; the Ussalry and the Ta-Matoran Guard showed up, and began fighting the Rahi. The Battle for the Kini Nui had turned.
But it wasn’t over yet. The Chronicler was already unconscious, and Macku was racing to his aide. But the Rahi were unfazed by the new arrivals, and pressed on with their attack. The Matoran reinforcements helped, but the battle wasn’t won yet.
In the skies, Tamaru watched in horror as the Nui Rama swarmed towards Kongu and his Kewa. “We must quick-help him!” he exclaimed to his friends.
Hafu and Taipu nodded, and both hurtled their discs upwards, but the airborne battle was too far away. “We’ll never be able to hit them,” Hafu said.
“We need to… to fly up there and ever-join them,” Tamaru said with a shutter. He was afraid of heights, which was unusual for Le-Matoran. But seeing his friend in distress was enough to make him face his fears.
“But we can’t fly, and we don’t have any birds?” Taipu stated. “How do we get up there?”
A lone Nui Rama sighted the three Matoran, and dove towards them. Tamaru narrowed his eyes and said, “I idea-has. Quick, aim-fire into Rahi’s nose, but no-knock masks off.”
Hafu and Taipu didn’t quite understand their traveling companion’s logic, but they threw their discs straight and true. The discs struck the Nui Rama on the nose, and landed with a thud on the ground. It started to get up and start flapping its wings again, but Tamaru was already on the move. He jumped up and landed on the Rahi’s back and grabbed on tight as it lifted off.
“He’s crazy!” Hafu said, as he watched the Rahi take the Le-Matoran up into the sky.
“But it’s getting him closer to Kongu!” Taipu said.
Indeed, Tamaru was doing his best to guide the Nui Rama towards his friend’s Kewa. Up in the air, Kongu was struggling to fight off the many beasts and keep his Rahi in flight. The Nui Rama had already scraped the Kewa’s wings, and if things continued, Kongu and his steed would be knocked out of the air and would fall to their deaths.
But Tamaru wasn’t going to let that happen. As he got close enough, he jumped from his Nui Rama and onto the Kewa, throwing his disc and knocking off the Rama’s infected masks as he did so.
Kongu spun around and sighted his friend. “What are you ever-doing here?” he exclaimed.
“Helping you,” Tamaru shot back.
“But you much-fear heights!”
“Important-not!” Tamaru yelled. “Now you fly, I disc-fling!”
Kongu took the reigns again, even as Tamaru began flinging discs at the incoming Rahi. The two Matoran worked together to thin out the flying Rama swarm. With Kongu back in control, he was able to weave the Kewa in and out of the Rahi, and Tamaru knocked down any that got too close with his discs. They managed to hold the Nui Rama swarm off long enough for the rest of the Gukko Force, who then made short work of the flying Rahi menace.
As the battle wound to a close, Kongu and Tamaru landed next to the victorious Matoran. “That was some much-good disc flinging up there,” Kongu commented to Tamaru. “We should up-team more often.”
“Thanks-not,” Tamaru said, falling on the ground in the heap. “I still prefer fighting Rahi down-tree. High-flying is much-scary.”
Tahu was a Toa of Fire
His surfing career coundn't be higher
But then his luck turned; he fell and got burned
Which caused Toa Tahu to expire
Posted Jun 01 2012 - 01:51 AM
Theme: Alternate Universe
Word Count: 593
Story: Vezon's Utopia
Vezon was just about as happy as he ever could be.
For one thing, he was flying through a void. Voids always excited him. They were there, but yet they weren't really anywhere. Plus, they were just lovely little things. Vworp, there's a void, then vworp again, you're not there anymore. Easy transport.
For another, he had a mask attached to his face. To be honest, he was kind of missing a mask stuck to his face. The Ignika had been there for a while, but then it got ripped away, then he got this lovely Olmak, which he liked because he could actually do something with it. The Ignika just sat there doing nothing.
He couldn't finish thinking up and listing out what all he liked about flying between two dimensions and two eternities when, all of a sudden, he had reached the other side, plopping down unreasonably hard upon what looked at first glance to be soft and lush grass. A swarm of fireflyers rushed out around him, surrounding his face.
To Vezon's surprise, every individual fireflyer featured none other than his smiling face.
"Ooh, this is a big'n. Nice and thick for the barbecue," one said.
"Yeah, but he's got that thing in his head. Looks like a cookie," another chimed in. "I wonder if it's a lemon."
"I like pancakes," muttered another.
"'Scuse me, little ones, but I don't suppose you're fans? Just remember that autographs are five widgets each," Vezon said. "Oh, except for Vezok's spine. That I would pay you to let me sign."
"You mean it's alive?"
"Are we going to have pancakes or not?"
The swarm of Vezon fireflyers was in disarray. Mentally discombobulated as ever, Vezon ambled off into the nearby city. He entered the main street and found that he fit right in, for every single living thing, regardless of species, was in his image. Everywhere he looked, there were copies of his visage.
Vezon worked his way to the town center, where a disorienting and downright bizarre sculpture dominated the foreground. Though Vezon was insane, he was still cunning, albeit in a twisted way.
Using his Olmak powers, he opened a portal and sucked away the statue. All of the Vezons in the city focused their attention on this newcomer and his powerful abilities.
This was the beginning of something excellent.
"What is it?" Jaller asked.
"I have no idea," Nuparu responded. "It looks like ... well, I don't know what it looks like, really."
Jaller nodded. "It kind of looks like something that Vezon would make if he had a bunch of free time," he said after a while.
Nuparu's eyes got narrower as he smirked slightly. "Somehow, I think you may be right."
Behind them, unheard and unseen, a group of fireflyers swarmed out of a dimensional hole, one of them muttering something about pancakes.
Vezon could get used to this.
He had successfully convinced the inhabitants of the city to let him become their ruler, as he had abilities no one else did. He became their ruler years ago, and every day since then had been filled with sitting on his opulent but chaotic-looking throne, ordering his subjects around incoherently, and occasionally sucking up things or subjects in order to send them off into another dimension. The first living thing he did that in his rule was to those unruly fireflyers, and its novelty hadn't yet worn off.
He had indeed gotten used to it, but somewhere within the warped and twisted corridors of his mind, he decided that he'd never grow tired of it.
And if he did, he was only a wish away from the next universe over.
Posted Jun 01 2012 - 08:00 AM
It's fine, man. Your story is good, I think mine is okay, and it doesn't matter. XD Honestly, yours fits the name better.
Yes! For the first time, I haven't had a run-of-the-mill interpreatation of the theme. Not that said fact means my previous entries were bad; I personally liked them (then again I wrote them). I'm just excited that I made an effective flashfic with a more creative approach this time.
EDIT: Wait, really Jello Pickles? I only just saw right after I posted. *facepalm* At least changing my title by a couple words so it isn't identical in that respect. ...We're probably going to hate each other a little bit for awhile...ugh. I'm sorry man, I got the idea completely independently; I swear.
TONS OF DAMAGE
Better nerf Irelia.
Posted Jun 01 2012 - 10:28 AM
Theme: Alternate Universe
Word Count: 531
Story: Vakama’s Last Mistake
“No, Vakama, don’t!” yelled Norik.
And Vakama heeded the voice.
“Why?” The spinner on his back cooled, suppressing his inner terror at the beast within.
“That’s the same protodermis that you sealed the Makuta with. If you launch that, you’ll break that seal.”
“Come on, Vakama.”
“I won’t do this! I won’t doom my fellow Matoran to have to face him again!”
Elemental spinners exploded forth from the other Toa, overloading the capacity of the stone, badly injuring Roodaka. The stone, still intact, was reduced to a smoking mass.
Walking away from the injured Roodaka, the six Toa presented themselves in front of Keetongu, who returned them to their original forms. A minuscule portion of their energy sealed the Roodaka in a protodermis cage, giving her the same fate as her master.
* * *
“Please, Tahu. Listen to me. There is an island below – an island to which we must return.”
Why did we leave there, anyway?
“So now you tell me. Really Turaga, I don’t if I trust you anymore. You and your babblings about ‘Metru Nui’.”
Vakama sighed. “Come with me, insolent Toa.”
The six Turaga and six Toa showed up at the entrance of the tunnel. “Are you sure that this is the right one?” joked Onua.
Whenua was sure he wasn’t the only one fighting a bitter taste in his mouth. If only we could give these beings something to fight, he mused. Then they wouldn’t be so annoying.
* * *
The six Toa Nuva arrived on Voya Nui. “Mighty quiet here” Lewa said. After a few miles of nothing but standard landscape, Tahu set fire to a nearby tree. Rain crashed down from the heavens, putting it out.
“Tahu, knock it off! We are not destroyers!”
“So what? This is just another dumb Turaga mission. Let’s see if we can find their pity prize before they get too agitated.”
“Oh, right here” Pohatu guessed, sending a bunch of rocks cascading down to reveal a tunnel.
“Easier than rolling off a Gukko bird.” Lewa commented.
They charged down the tunnel, only to come face-to-face with a huge, winged titan.
“Er, wrong way.”
“Pohatu, can you blast us another route?”
Pohatu tried his powers on the wall. No luck.
“This is the right way. Obviously, this time it is a challenge” said Kopaka. He aimed an ice blast at the creature, trying to freeze it solid, but was merely met with a blast of shadow.
“Er, let’s try that protocage power. That seemed to work for the Toa, back when, said Pohatu, dodging a shadow blast. Powers merged. Giant frozen.
“Too easy” said Kopaka.
* * *
“All that talk of heroism, blah, blah, makes me sick.” hissed Tahu, holding up an Agori in disgust. “Knock it off.”
“Mata Nui said-“
“I don’t care about Mata Nui. Something the Turaga made up to scare us at night.”
A huge, giant colossus mandered into view, casually smashing the Toa of Fire to bits.
* * *
“Heremus, you should be proud of yourself. Your defense mechanism is eliminating the Toa threat.”
“It’s best to be prepared for all contingencies.” Heremus smiled, going back to his creative musings.
Posted Jun 01 2012 - 11:13 AM
Theme: Alternate Universe
Word Count: 584
Story: The Cell
The figure winked and vanished, leaving a rather disoriented Solek to take in his surroundings. At first glance he appeared to be in a stone cube- but after a few seconds a flash of yellow light appeared from one side, and he realized he was in a cell.
“Are you sure you heard something?” A voice asked.
“Positive.” A second being replied. “By Cell 4062-F.”
Too confused at the moment to really be scared, Solek took a few wobbly steps over to the bars keeping him in the cell and grabbed on, pushing his mask against them in an attempt to see what was outside.
“See? I told you!” The second voice said loudly.
Solek flinched backward and raised one hand to shield his eyes as he found a torch suddenly swept across the bars, peeking out after a few seconds.
“Why are you awake, up and about?!” Kopaka hissed at him.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” Solek told him, confused. “Why am I here?”
“Don’t you even dare try that nonsense!” Kopaka snarled. “You know why you’re in there!”
“Where is here?” Solek asked.
“Where is here?” Kopaka mimicked in a high pitched voice. “I swear Kopaka; I’m just a scared little Matoran! You have the wrong guy!”
Solek shrank back towards the cell wall, flinching with each word Kopaka spoke. Why was the Toa speaking to him like this? Toa were supposed to be nice, not cruel.
“Oh, are you scared, little Matoran?” Kopaka asked with mock sympathy, in the same high pitched voice. “Why don’t you run into Kopaka’s arms and everything will be all better!”
The Matoran stumbled on something on the floor and fell, landing on a pile of rusty chains- using the torch light, Solek could see what enough to mummify a Matoran appeared.
A lump of fear formed within him for the first time, and he scrambled back into the corner of the cell, away from Kopaka and the chains.
“What do we have here?” Solek quickly lowered his head, staring at the cell floor as he heard the first voice, scared of what he would find. What if it wasn’t just Kopaka? What if this entire place was crazy?
“We have him, Chirox.” He heard Kopaka respond.
Solek’s eyes darted up- no, Kopaka would never work with a Makuta....
“Free from his shackles, eh?” Chirox chuckled. “Perhaps his turn comes sooner than I believed.”
“M-my t-turn for what?” Solek couldn’t resist asking, hating the tremor within his voice.
“My little Matoran, you simply must not toy with me!” Chirox laughed again. “The vat, of course. Perhaps if you’re lucky, you’ll be the first to not suffer hours of agony before passing.”
Solek jerked up, his mouth open to beg for mercy; before he realized that the cell was gone.
“I-I don’t....” he trailed off, turning.
The figure grinned at him, his smile eerie after what Solek had just witnessed.
“Gotcha out just in time didn’t I?” the figure said. “Ain’t that just dandy? Almost missed ya, too- nearly got yourself boiled!”
Solek shivered, glaring at the figure.
“You said it would be better.”
“I did say better!” the figure laughed, activating his Olmak once again. “Never said better for you, kid- it was better for me! Man, you shoulda seen the look on your face!”
“Anywho, maybe you’ll like this place more. Have fun!”
The figure winked at him again, and vanished. Solek closed his eyes tightly; afraid of what he might see.
Posted Jun 01 2012 - 12:24 PM
Theme: Alternate Universe
Word Count: 548
Story: The Toa and His Reflection
The glimmering silver pool sat central in the ancient chamber. Only one even knew of its existence on the small island. He was a Toa, the conqueror of his world, a ruler with an army so strong that none would ever think to stand against him. This world was his... but he wanted more, much more. There was nothing left to conquer in his land. But through the silver pool, he could see something different. It was a world like his, only there was peace, no one ruled over them, there was a void that could be filled.
He wanted to reach through, into this other world, and seize it in his grasp, rule it as his own. They wouldn't be expecting it, never know what they were dealing with when he entered into their peace and shattered it under his heel. But always when he looked into the pool, he would see another being staring back. It was himself, but different. He looked less menacing, less terrifying. He looked weak.
He tried touching the pool, seeing that the other did the same. Then a thought crossed his mind. Perhaps it crossed the mind of the other him at the same time, he expected that it did. He would plunge into the pool, coming out on the other side, where he would conquer their world for his own. He would become the king of a second universe. They would learn to fear the name of Shoxip as their word crumbled around them.
He closed his eyes, taking in a deep breath, and saw as the other him did the same. They were going to swap worlds with each other it seemed. But he wasn't thinking of that, he was only thinking of the power he would gain within his new kingdom. Maybe another Nui-Stone? He would enjoy having a second, it would make him far more powerful than he could even imagine. The thought made him smile inwardly. He would be beyond comprehension in his strength, and then perhaps find another world, where he would find more.
With a grin, the Toa with dreams of power beyond even the Great Spirit's jumped into the silvery pool, quickly sinking to the bottom. But there was nothing there, nothing but disorienting silver liquid. He couldn't find his way out. His power of flame did nothing at all the the dark clutches of the liquid, until his flaming spark of life finally faded away into the dark depths.
The other Shoxip stood watching from his side of the pool. He had stopped himself moments before jumping in, when a thought crossed his mind. What if he was unable to fix the damage to that other world, what if all he was doing was letting a twisted version of himself into his world. Could he sentence his own world to ruin for merely the chance to save another? He found that he could not.
With a sigh, he walked away from the pool. There was nothing he could do. The other him had leaped into the water, and not shown up in this world, or back in his own. Wherever the dark Shoxip was, Shoxip hoped that his dark counterpart would never again harm anyone again, as he had seen through his own silver pool many times before.
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