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Seven Lives... Two Faces

Kini Hawkeye Alternate Universe Story Topic

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#1 Offline Lord Kini Hawkeye

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Posted Dec 11 2011 - 01:06 AM

The cost of freedom is always high – any who say differently are fools.Some might argue that one should not have to fight for his freedom, instead believing that freedom is a right, to be given away to everyone. Others would argue it is merely an ideal, which can be neither given nor earned – that freedom exists only in the mind of the dreamer.I know for a fact that freedom is neither. It is not a thing to give or take, nor is it a state of mind – it’s a state of being. Of knowing deep inside you that your actions are your own and that every breath you take is yours to breathe. And yet – is it possible to believe you are free, with every fibre of your being. To know deep within your soul that your actions are your own... but not have any control over them at all?The cost of freedom is always high.For we are never truly free.

-Skierós

Seven Lives... Two Faces

A Novel by Kini Hawkeye

Summary: Skierós is a Toa of Two Faces – always the victim, always the villain, never just one or the other. His curse will never break, but is it possible for him, when faced with the greatest decision of his life, to break a cycle so much different, but so very entwined with his own?

Chapter 1

The clouds drifted slowly over the mountains, their wispy trails white over the expanse of grey that covered the sky – forerunners to the great storm behind them. The last dwindling traces of snow were almost nonexistent toward the lower reaches of the mountains, but near the peaks vast expanses of white still laid dormant.Skierós made his way along the rugged path before him, boots slipping on the mud covered ground with each step, before finding purchase and restarting the process. He grunted as the awkward slope of the road threw off his balance and nearly sent him off the cliff to his left. It probably wasn’t the best path to be on, but it was the quickest. He was headed into a storm... that much he knew, but it was impossible to tell if it would be snow or rain that hit him – one of the greatest difficulties of weather during the spring months.As he walked, his pace grew slower as he struggled against the wind that now threatened to send him off the edge of the road and down the not-exactly-gradual slope of the mountain. He wasn’t necessarily the strongest Toa, more average than anything. He’d never been one for the intense “workouts” that some other Toa seemed to enjoy – in his life he simply acted as another civilian. His one great skill lay in swordplay and his control of Elemental Energy, and they were skills he'd put to use as both a Mercenary and Guard in various cities and villages around the continent.The snow began to fall, slowly at first, but over time the flakes sped up, until they bit at his face and skin. He let out a snarl as one particular flake managed to cut deep into his face – far enough to sting. Lifting a hand out from the depths of his black travellers’ cloak, he held it palm out towards the snow, and watched with a savagely amused grin as fire leapt from his fingertips and formed a semi-transparent screen of fire in front of him.The fire lent a small glow to the area around him, now darkened by clouds and the haze of falling snow. His black armour glinted with tones of red and yellow. His mask, a wolf-like, black Hau, shadowed further despite the new source of light.His feet were weighed down by weariness, but he pressed on. Somewhere over the next mountains peak laid his target – a small town where he could rest and restock on supplies. He scowled slightly as he increased the power of his “fire screen,” to the point where he could properly see a few feet ahead of him. His efforts aided him only a little, but it was enough to help him see exactly where he was. The peak of the mountain, the highest point on the "hill" he’d been climbing for almost a week, and all he could see in any direction was white. And after all this hard work, he thought, this is what I’m rewarded with? That just won’t do... With a grim smile, he raised both hands, snuffing the life out of his “fire screen” with a single thought. He cupped his hands, almost as though they were holding water, and summoned the flames. Two red orbs of fire burst into life, one in each of his palms. They floated an inch or two above the skin, but with the absence of the flames keeping the snow at bay, they may as well not have existed – all light and heat was swallowed up by the raging storm around him. Skierós willed more and more of his power into the flames, urging them to grow bigger, brighter – hotter. He continued this until the heat began melting the snow around his feet. Immune to heat as he was, even he felt the warmth that the fire lent to his surroundings. Skierós lifted his arms higher bringing the two flames closer and closer together. Like two magnets, wisps of flame were drawn out of each flame and in between the two. The two flames merged into a single, larger flame, which Skierós slammed into the ground with force rivalling even the legendary Onua. The entire world – sky, ground, the very air around Skierós – burst into flame. In the aftermath of the explosion, nothing was left of the massive snow storm that had obscured Skierós’ view, only clear, blue skies and that big yellow ball that had been strangely absent during the trek through the mountains. And in the valley before him, stood a small town – the entire reason for his detour through the mountains – Ceneta. Considering the size of the town, this was probably the single most useless detour ever... of all time. He thought sarcastically. Shoulders heaving with a heavy sigh, Skierós began the long trek back down the mountain, grunting as his boot crushed snow with each footfall, forcing him to bring his knees to his chest just to continue moving. It was going to be a long trip back down.*** This town is a lot bigger down here than it was from up there, Skierós mused. Of course, he should’ve realized that anything would look much smaller than it really was from so much higher an elevation, but he’d passed it off as something that was just a little too small to be worth the trouble he’d gone through to get there. In reality, it was quite the opposite – Ceneta was, or at least seemed to be, a fairly modernized village – despite its location so far north. Skierós couldn’t help but recall, with a slight chuckle, a conversation he’d overheard in a bar just before leaving for this isolated “city.” “Those Cenetans, thinkin’ they’re so great with their Rahi sleds and houses made of ice – they’re annoying – saying ‘eh’ at the end of every sentence!” The last was met with applause and cheers of agreement from the stranger’s companions. Skierós couldn’t agree with all that was said, the few Cenetans that drifted south were a lot more civil than his own kind – and they were usually more formal - unless drunk. He just hoped they wouldn’t all say eh – and besides, Rahi sleds were a good idea in this climate. Skierós neared the main gate of the town, but even though he was hoping for barely a second glance, he knew there was no way his peak-side fireworks would’ve gone unnoticed. So when he walked through the front gate, only to be welcomed by a group of five or six spearmen with their weapons levelled at his face, he didn’t even flinch. Instead, he raised his hands calmly, showing that he had no weapons and dropped to his knees – he’d been through procedure before. One of the Cenetans, obviously the leader of the guards, stepped forward, spear now held in only one hand at his side. Skierós had the time to observe the weapon as the guard captain neared. It was of similar design to many of the “superior” southern craftsmen, albeit a bit more intricate. A small ribbon hung off of the spearhead, alternating red and white – the colors that represented the county. “Sir, what is your name and business in Ceneta?” the captain said, authority creeping into his wary voice. Skierós chuckled – that’s one myth about Ceneta busted. “My name is Skierós, and my business is my own.” He said calmly, “I am simply here to restock on supplies and continue my journey.” The guard captain looked uncertain, though he nodded all the same. “You wouldn’t happen to know anything about the recent fireworks display up on the peak of Mount Aeyan, would you? We’ve been on high alert ever since – an explosion that big hasn’t been seen since the days of the dragons.” Skierós swallowed uncertainly before answering. “In truth sir, I caused the fireworks – though I assure you I mean no harm. The snow was very... annoying, shall we say?” The guard looked at him with wonder, and a hint of fear, before smiling. “Well sir, I’m not going to hinder your stay here – however I’d like to ask that you remain in the city for a night or two before leaving – if you turn out to be a dangerous character, I would hate to allow you to slip through my fingers and cause trouble in some other town.” Skierós just smiled. “Of course captain, I understand completely. Will lodging be arranged or will I have to find my own?” “Just down the street – the Kanohi Dragon Inn – should have a room for you for a small fee.” Skierós stood, “Thank you captain. I shall make my way there, if there is no other business at this moment?” The captain nodded dismissively, returning to his post, as Skierós simply stood and walked away, towards the Inn.~~~~~~End Chapter OneRemember everyone, review are welcome :biggrin:Review Topic

Edited by Lord Kini Hawkeye, Dec 18 2011 - 05:29 PM.

  • 0

The worlds have now learned

Of the worst yet to come

On the brink of an end, a Boy learns to crawl

{/BZPRPG Profiles\}  :.: {/COMIC: Eljay: The Becoming\} :.: {/EPIC: Danger Close\} :.: {/EPIC: Wings\}

[There is Invisible Text here]
Cause I can't find a banner ;_;

{/Seven Lives, Two Faces\}

Don't pass up this chance, oh go tear down the walls

No gods will watching, no one cares enough at all

These worlds need now an ending, as they did at the start

But I'll keep on pretending, I won't

Go...


#2 Offline Lord Kini Hawkeye

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Posted Dec 18 2011 - 01:57 PM

Chapter 2

Skierós opened the old wooden door to the pub slowly, wrinkling his nose in disgust at the smells that assailed him as he did so - beer and beer breath... but mostly beer. He choked back a gasp as he realized just how jammed full the inn really was. Literally every table was full, and the bar itself was too. Skierós walked in slowly, feeling oddly exposed despite the fact that any eyes that wandered by him simply left after a moment. He walked slowly to the bar, putting on his best confidence face as he did so – public... well, anything, wasn’t his specialty. He walked up to the bartender, an older, gruff Toa of Fire, who looked up with a mildly interested glance, before speaking plainly. “Wha’ll you ‘ave to drink?” Skierós blinked, trying to catch up with the rapid fire question. “Uh... actually, I wanted to see about getting a room?” The Toa looked at him with an amused glance, “Two Rooms upstairs – on the house. I’ve made more than enough money tonight.” Skierós was about to protest, but nearly jumped as a loud shout erupted from a group in the back, roaring over the crowd – specifically a green armoured Toa with a Stylized Miru. “And I said ‘Cabbage?’ Why have cabbage when you can have Potatoes!” The group erupted in laughter, obviously heavily drunk. The green armoured one stood up and walked towards the bar, a small bag of coins held in one hand. “I’ll have another round for me and the gents, if you will!” He stated, dropping the coins on the counter, a mad grin plastered on his face. “You know,” The bartender replied, “You may want to think about toning it down. After all, the last thing you want is for her to find you here.” The other Toa sobered up slightly – even the other bar patrons stiffened at those words. “Heh... I suppose you’re right – last thing we want is a repeat of last time.” The door opened with a loud crack, splitting the thick wood around it. “AKAKU!” The angry call echoed throughout the now entirely silent room. The only one who didn’t look at all afraid was the bartender himself. “Oh... h-hi Aqua... I uh... didn’t know you’d be back so soon....” The green armoured Toa – Akaku – replied. “Didn’t know I’d be back so soon, that’s Kane-Ra and you know it Akaku. I left for one hour to check on things, and in that time you manage to get yourself dead drunk!?” The newcomer, a blue armoured female Toa of water, charged forward and forcefully grabbed onto Akaku’s wrist, dragging him along behind her as she made for the door. Akaku struggled, throwing up a last ditch effort to stay by latching both hands to the doorframe. “Don’t forget me laddies!” were the last words out of his mouth before he disappeared. The bartender chuckled, before returning to the counter disinterestedly. Skierós was simply left wondering why a man who named himself Akaku wore a Miru. Skierós sat down and ordered a few drinks – after all, he was there. No point in being in a bar if you aren’t going to drink. It took him some time, but slowly he unwound, becoming more and more relaxed as he did so. It wasn’t long before he noticed more strange events – such as a group of four Matoran, one with a Kanohi Huna which he actually managed to activate and use – much to the astonishment of all those involved. That same group left soon after with a Toa – one who’d been sitting in the corner smoking a pipe since before Skierós even arrived. Skierós downed a few more drinks, still shrouded in his travellers’ cloak, before retiring for the night. He walked up the stairs to the upper level of the inn, entering his room and finding it quite to his liking. It was small, just enough for the bed, table, and chest that inhabited it. He set the small pouch around his waist down, doing the same with his travellers’ cloak, before working at undoing the clasps that held his dagger and blade to his belt. He set all of his belongings down, except the black armour he wore. It was one of the few things he refused to remove at night – so much so that the armour was more of a second skin than anything. Born of necessity, his habit had saved his life many a time. Skierós lay back in his bed, eyes drooping as he stared at the ceiling. His eyes drooped, and ever so slowly, he drifted off to sleep. The dreams came, as they always do – but these dreams were not like others – not childhood memories, or dreams of the future. Just flame and shadow – and the all consuming need to destroy.

~~~

A single scream resounded throughout the mountain range – so similar in pitch to the very wind itself that it had to have been natural. But what seemed to be just the simple howling of the wind carried with it a feeling of pure fear, and unmistakable malice that chilled to the bone.And on the peak of the mountain – on the same road that Skierós himself had traversed just hours before, stood four black riders. Each rode a black Muaka, weapons drawn. Their eyes lay solely upon the city below them, and as one, they urged their mounts forward, unleashing an unholy scream.A/N: A bit more of a Filler chapter, sorry people, the next chapter is better :PI planned on posting a chapter once a week, every sunday. but maybe because it's Xmas next week i'll post up Chapter Three early.

Edited by Lord Kini Hawkeye, Dec 18 2011 - 05:30 PM.

  • 0

The worlds have now learned

Of the worst yet to come

On the brink of an end, a Boy learns to crawl

{/BZPRPG Profiles\}  :.: {/COMIC: Eljay: The Becoming\} :.: {/EPIC: Danger Close\} :.: {/EPIC: Wings\}

[There is Invisible Text here]
Cause I can't find a banner ;_;

{/Seven Lives, Two Faces\}

Don't pass up this chance, oh go tear down the walls

No gods will watching, no one cares enough at all

These worlds need now an ending, as they did at the start

But I'll keep on pretending, I won't

Go...


#3 Offline Lord Kini Hawkeye

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Posted Dec 22 2011 - 06:25 PM

Chapter 3

Skierós awoke to the sound of screams. It was something that barely poked through to his mind, and yet it woke him all the same. His eyes flew open, and he immediately shut them against the burning sensations he felt as he did. It took him a few moments before he opened his eyes once more, slowly this time, making sure that his eyes didn’t burn. Smoke greeted his gaze – smoke and flame. He stumbled out of his bed, hastily grabbing and fastening his belongings to him, he opened a window, not at all afraid of the possible consequences. He was, after all, a Toa of fire. As the window opened, the flames roared and shot out, a massive inferno that set fire to much of the previously untouched exterior of the Inn. Skierósdragged himself out of the window, dropping the ten or so feet to the ground. The impact jarred his legs, and it took him a moment to continue onward. Drawing his sword, he advanced through the now burning city of Ceneta, helping those he could escape from the flames, while putting the fires out from some of the more important buildings with small bursts of his powers. The effort was draining, but worth it. At last he came to the gates, where swarms of now refugee Cenetans were running; carrying what few belongings they were able. Standing at the gate were the guards, a measly four of them, and two of the patrons from the bar last night – Akaku and Aqua – standing defiantly against four black riders. Without a second thought, Skierós joined them, his sword glowed a deep orange in the light of the fires. “Who are you? What business do you have putting our city to the torch?” yelled Akaku, wind swirling around him, and a pistol in his hand. The rest rallied around him, weapons drawn as they faced the bleak, unmoving faces of the riders. “We are here... for him.” The one in the lead said, slowly raising a gauntleted hand towards Skierós. The others looked at him in shock, confusion registering on their faces for a split second, before Akaku stepped forward, cocking his pistol. “If you want him, come and claim him.” He spat, flames burning behind his eyes. The Riders took that advice to heart, drawing wickedly sharp swords from their sheaths and urging their mounts on slowly. The lead one neared, andin one deft movement, slashed at Akaku’s head, so fast the movement didn’t even register for all there. Aqua cried out in horror, her eyes glazing over in shock as Akaku simply disappeared. Dead. Aqua and the rest drew their own blades and weapons, an odd assortment of swords, spears, and elemental powers that together should’ve easilylevelled the four riders. Skierós and Aqua each took one rider for themselves, trusting the other four to fight the last two riders in pairs. However, each rider cleanly and easily matched their opponents, so easily in fact that Skierós had to wonder if they could see what their adversaries were going to do before it happened. Skierós dropped to one knee as he blocked a particularly heavy blow from his enemy. His sword wavered, almost bending under the strength of the rider. Sweat beaded across Skierós’ brow, and he could feel his muscles begin to falter. Good-bye, cruel world, he thought to himself, a grim humour setting over him. But even though he fully expected death, a shrieking cry rang out across the battlefield, stunning both the Cenetan defenders, and the black riders. Aqua lay on the ground, a huge gash along her side that gushed blood. Her face contorted in agony, she was all but defenceless as she began to bleed out, completely helpless, and at the mercy of her enemy. The lead rider laughed, eyes glowing red as he readied his sword for another strike. He raised the blade over his head, preparing to slash downward, when a single massive crack rang out around them. The blade flew out of the rider’s hand, followed by a sharp, pained laugh. There Akaku stood his face a mask of pure rage, the very air around the combatants began to thicken as he blew the smoke away from his pistol. He spoke then, voice dark and menacing, “Run along now, before I break something other than a sword.”The riders shrieked once more, turning their mounts around and charging away. Skierós picked up the fallen blade, recoiling in shock as it turned to dust before his eyes. He studied the hilt, it’s curved and spiked design puzzling him – tugging at the back of his mind like he’d seen it before.The others had already begun tending to Aqua, who’d lost enough blood to send her into unconsciousness. She wouldn’t die, she was far too tough for that, but she would be very weak for a time.Skierós turned his thoughts back to the strange blade, puzzling over it for a time, nearly forgetting the blazing town before him, before he was jerked back to reality by a rough shake from one of the guards.He nodded quickly, annoyed that his musing had been interrupted. The last of the refugees away from the city, Skierós let his thoughts turn to what the rider had said.They’d come for him, they’d burnt down an entire city for him. How Skierós could live with himself after not only causing the destruction of the city, but also nearly killing Aqua just because of his presence... it was all too much.The cold startled him out of yet another one of his musings, reminding him of just where he was. Snow had begun to fall, and already it was growing into yet another blizzard.Skierós stood, taking one last look at the flaming husk of Ceneta, burning the image into his memory, before turning and following the rapidly disappearing footsteps of Ceneta’s refugees.A/N: It occurs to me that I really don't have the drive to make massive chapters so.... yeah.Future chapters (ones that aren't even on my comp yet, but have been written) are longer... i hope D:

  • 0

The worlds have now learned

Of the worst yet to come

On the brink of an end, a Boy learns to crawl

{/BZPRPG Profiles\}  :.: {/COMIC: Eljay: The Becoming\} :.: {/EPIC: Danger Close\} :.: {/EPIC: Wings\}

[There is Invisible Text here]
Cause I can't find a banner ;_;

{/Seven Lives, Two Faces\}

Don't pass up this chance, oh go tear down the walls

No gods will watching, no one cares enough at all

These worlds need now an ending, as they did at the start

But I'll keep on pretending, I won't

Go...





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