Mid World: Part Eight (Ten)  

Posted by The Alchemist in

-8-

So much luck from one omen seemed, well, impossible. Not that she minded being wrong in this case. First they had found the traveler, probably a son of Eld, walking along the old mountain trail, and he had given her family his strength. Then they had been blessed with the birth of a third child of true stock, far more then needed to continue the family. It was always a hard choice when a pure one was born as to what should be done with them, for there is much power in the freshly birthed, oh yes, but sometimes having a spare child was good since one of the older ones might be killed or take sick. If there were no children, who would continue the family? We must continue the family, that much they remembered, had been told so by the great waters in the sky. It was one of the few things they had held on to from before the world had moved on. “Go forth ye and make more of your like, being fruitful and increasing in numbers until ye be unto us a great multitude spanning the length and breadth of the earth.” So said the great waters in the sky. But there was also power in the blood, was there not, blood given for the family? With three there was no question as to what was to be done.

And finally as she had been stalking the gap this morning, looking for some earth root to spice tomorrow’s festivities, what had she seen? Another traveler! And she’d seen him of all places near the temple of the old ones!

She had been told the stories by the Old Mother before her about the people who would appear at the temple of the old people like a gift from the great waters themselves, but she had never seen it happen. As if the water from beneath the ground was not gift from the gods enough! Truly, she and her family must done something to please them with so much good fortune. Her lips were wet even now with the thought of him, for he had looked very well built, and strong. No more of the green ones from under the mountain for a week! Maybe longer if they were careful.

She walked along, dirt crunching beneath her feet, and the son of Eld’s pack swayed gently at her hip, full of earth root. All of this from one crow. The old people had not known the potency of the crow, but she would not forget, and neither would the Young Mother under her care if she had anything to do with it. She began to hum an old tune that Old Mother had taught her as she made her way home. Tonight her family would go and fetch the man and he would add his strength to theirs.

Mid World: Part seven (Nine)  

Posted by The Alchemist in

The most notable thing about the desert is its profound sense emptiness. It builds slowly on a man, indefinable at first. Then one day it creeps up on you, sudden and powerful, and whether you have the words to describe it or not, you know one thing for sure.

You feel absolutely alone.

That morning as the man stood on the crest of a hill, not a quarter of a mile from the highway hotel at which he had been staying, it struck him; he’d give anything to see another human being. Somebody. Anybody. He might have even settled for some quality time with that crazy eye.

He stood there in the middle of the road, and looked at the sunrise. The sky was a magnificent blue in contrast with the rocky brown earth beneath it, beautiful and terrible. In every direction the emptiness of the desert stood like a insurmountable wall. The mountains to the west seemed to be only one way out. He didn’t realize it but he already subconsciously decided that they were his goal. What he would find there was irrelevant, they were a touchstone, and trekking towards those mountains seemed like a lot better option then going out over the open desert.

He knew this wasn’t his day to leave; he knew he would have to go back to the way station, but it felt good to be out in the morning air before it became unbearably hot, and after looking at the sunrise for a while his eyes began to wander over the surrounding landscape, rising and falling with the hills, taking in the scrubs and withered trees until...

Until he saw something…

Someone. (Someone!)

He was looking south. Seventy yards past the edge of the old road the terrain dropped off into a sort of shallow gorge that crookedly wound towards the mountains. The gorge itself was no more then a mile long. Standing on the opposite ridge, silhouetted against the horizon was a figure, a person.

The man razed his hand to the sky and began to frantically wave it.

A person! he thought. A PERSON!

When the figure did not respond to his waving, he began to shout.

“Hey! HEY! Over here! I’m over here! Buddy! Look over HERE!”

The figure didn’t respond even in the slightest, only stood there like a statue.

Watching.

Probably watching. The man could make out both shoulders so either the person was looking right at him or directly away from him, but surely the figure would have turned at the sound of the shouting. Wouldn’t it have? His arm’s waving pace began to slow and then altogether stopped; he didn’t like the way it was watching him.

The figure lingered for a few moments longer, turned (Oh he'd been watching alright), and started walking away from the man, slowly disappearing behind the ridge.

Well that was freaking creepy, the man thought. Ain’t gonna follow you buddy, and you better not follow me. Maybe being alone isn’t so bad after all.

The man was almost as fast going back to the way station as he had been leaving it.

Tyler of Mid-World, Part 2  

Posted by Andrew Blatt in

     Tyler rode cautiously. His spear was out of its case, laying across his lap. There would be no time to draw it if trouble came.

     And it would come, he was sure of that. Nothing yet, but Tyler's eyes were constantly moving, taking in his surroundings and never letting himself focus for too long on one object. So far, all he has seen were plants that got scrawnier and sparser as he went on. After a week of travel, he was entering the Wastes for real now. As he got further from home, the land grew less and less hospitable.

     Tyler glanced at the ground again hoping to see some sign that someone had been through recently, but as usual the only signs of passing he saw were his own. He sighed, expressing equal parts frustration and melancholy.

     Tyler had never known his father. Finally, after sixteen years of uncertainty and doubt, he had been unable to contain his desire--no, his need--to seek out the man who had been missing from his life. And yet, even now he felt no closer to finding him.

     Tyler had been raised by his grandmother, his father's mother. She would tell him stories about his father and the fall from grace Craig suffered. Tyler often made her repeat them, always looking for some clue. Some insight into his father's mind.

     Some way to approximate the face he was to remember.

     According to his grandmother, Craig had gone to the inner baronies to train as a gunslinger when he, Craig, was very young. It had taken a long time, and during his period of apprenticeship, Craig had met and married Tyler's mother, whom his grandmother called "a damned distraction," among other things. When Celia, Tyler's mother, had become pregnant, Craig decided he had put off his final test long enough. At the age of twenty-one, with a wife and a baby on the way, Craig took the final test to become a gunslinger.

     And failed.

     And so, with his wife in her seventh month of pregnancy, Craig had been publicly disgraced and sent West.

     Celia had died in childbirth, and so Tyler had been sent to Green River to live with his grandmother.

     And now he too had gone West. But this was his choice.

     Tyler caught the glint of gunmetal to his right and twisted in his saddle to face it, spear raised and ready.

     He heard the loud click of a revolver being cocked as a man stood from behind one of the larger scrub-bushes, barrel trained steadily on Tyler.

     The man was lean and weathered. His clothes were cut from antelope hide and rough cloth, it was obvious that he had crafted them from whatever materials had been readily available in the desert.

     "Lower that spear boy. You're far past where you ought to be."

     Tyler's fear was beyond words'--Hell, beyond thoughts' ability to express. But he did his best to hide it. He did not move the spear and inch and he kept his eyes locked on those of his aggressor. There was something oddly familiar about those eyes. It was like they had once been the same deep brown of his own, but had since been weathered and lightened by the sun. The strength of the voice that escaped the boy's terror-dried throat surprised both of them.

     "Cry your pardon, sai." Tyler spoke slowly, but with conviction. "But I've come too far to turn back around. I came lookin for someone and I aim to find him. If you ain't gonna let that happen, well, you oughta pull that trigger now and save us both some time."

     Tyler was startled at his own words, not only because of their clarity, but also their audacity. he resolved to enjoy them, as they would likely be his last.

     The man stared at Tyler for what seemed like forever. Without lowering the revolver, he spoke.

     "Who are you? And who are you looking for?"

     "I am Tyler Parrino, son of Craig. And the aforementioned Craig Parrino is the man I'm after."

     The man slowly lowered his gun as he blinked away the beginnings of tears. He spread his arms in a gesture of truce and welcoming.

     "I am Craig, son of Evan," there was a moment of silence as a grim grin broke on his face. "It's good to finally meet you, son."

Tyler of Mid-world, Part 1  

Posted by Andrew Blatt in

"His kind only got two things left to feel: honor and shame. What don't bring one, bring the other. You go near him and you're like to end up dead."

"I'm not a fool. I've been warned more than once and I'll go into this prepared."

"Nothing can prepare you for life, death, or a disgraced gunslinger."

Those had been the last words spoken to him by his grandmother when he rode out, heading West. Heading towards his father.

Everyone had told him not to go, that his father had long since been reduced to something less than human, but he didn't believe it. He was Tyler, son of Craig. That he knew. But it was hard to remember a face you'd never seen. And so he had gathered up his things and ridden. Into the West. Into the Wastes.

And here he was at the edge of everything he'd known. Tyler fought the urge to look back over his shoulder and instead pressed forward, his horse leaving fresh footprints in the packed sand.

----------

I'm not totally sure where this is going to go, but I guess we'll find out.

-The Drewcifer

Mid World: Part 6  

Posted by The Alchemist in

-6-


The man couldn’t sleep that night or during the next day. Little of the food he brought up from the cellar was eaten. He spent most of the day sitting in the stables, drinking water and thinking about what had happened the night before.

He briefly entertained the idea that it had all been a hallucination brought on by the heat, or that maybe it was madness, but he knew better. He just wanted it to have been madness. Every time he came near to sleeping he could see that yellow eye, looking out at him from inside the wall. It hadn’t done anything threatening, but it scared him all the same. That crazy voice too.

For that matter it seemed like it was trying to help him. That didn’t make any sense.

How does it know who I am?

After thinking about that for a moment he supposed it wasn’t beyond the realm of a crazy yellow eye in the wall to know who he was.

All he knew was that he didn’t like what that eye had said one bit. There had been to many bewares and he distinctly remembered something about help from the dead. That didn’t sound pleasant. Conjured up pictures of shambling corpses.

The sun rose and set long before he ran out of such thoughts. He fell asleep from exhaustion while looking at the stars.

The next day was much the same, but he ate some and fell asleep that night without effort.

When he got up in the morning he felt restless and wanted more then anything to be away from the old inn. Before the place had seemed merely worn down, but now it seemed ominous, its windows preternaturally dark.

The sun had hardly made it over the horizon before he was off, walking briskly down the west bound trail.

News Flash  

Posted by The Alchemist in

If you hadn't noticed I'm back at it again. I also figured out how to get it to tab over! Woot! Anyway. I have a few tests comming up so writing activity might be suspended for a few days. (Cry your pardon) I have a feeling that another writer may be joining me in this new story; it might become a collaberative work, who knows.

This tale is written in a place dreamed up by steven king, and the begining of my tale is based heavily on parts of his books, The Gunslinger, and a scene from Wolves of the Callah. I hope you enjoy it. I think its going to become my primary story, a story I feel that I know better how to tell then the last one.

- The Alchemist

Mid-World Writings: Part Five  

Posted by The Alchemist in

-5-

He felt rather then saw the dirt beneath his feet, it gave way a bit when he stepped off the ladder. He hadn’t noticed the dirt before. In fact his heightened senses noted a lot of new things. For starters he wasn’t completely blind, some faint moonlight from above shone down through a window and into the trap door giving just enough ambient light to make out the shelf on the far wall. There was also an incredible smell, damp and musty, and it made him want to puke. It smelled like rotten vegetables.

Over it all he could hear the whisper, the sound almost seemed to materialize around him, like thin tendrils, reaching out towards him, surrounding him.

Just get it over with, he told himself.

Right.

He unbuttoned his shirt and pulled it off. It would hold more cans then his arms would, no reason to come down here any more then he had to. As he was quickly putting cans into his shirt he felt a change and he paused.

The whispering had stopped.

He could feel something watching him.

“NEITHER THE FIRST, NOR THE LAST.” A voice told him.

It was deep and guttural and it seemed that with every word it spoke the very foundations of the little inn shuddered, spilling dust down into the room. Stunned by the words he forgot his shirt and the cans fell with heavy thumps into the dirt at his feet.

Somewhere deep down inside him a little voice screamed thinly I told you, I TOLD you something was wrong!

“YOU WILL FIND YOUR WAY ACROSS THE DESERT WITH THE HELP OF THE DEAD, THIS PLACE WILL NOT BE YOUR END.”

As the voice spoke he slowly turned around and saw in the middle of the far wall between two sandstone blocks a great yellow eye, set into the wall, was peering at him in the dark. Each word spoken shook his body until he thought his bones might vibrate right out of their sockets.

“What are you? He asked, his voice trembling.

“BEWARE THE TRUTH SHOWN ONLY IN ONE COLOR, MEANING CAN BE HIDDEN BY SUBTLE SHADE.”

“What are you talking about?!” the man cried. “Speak words I can understand!”

“COME CLOSER.”

“No freaking way am I going to do that!” He shouted.

“COME CLOSER!” It commanded.

“I will not.” He said apprehensively. “Whatever you're going to do, do it from over there.”

Its voice became quieter then, like a whisper. Its words seemed rigid and cold.

“Beware the man with many faces, for his words are sweet and his appearance is lovely, but his heart is hard and black. He has no milk of human kindness for he is not human. Do not have compassion on him for he will have none on you.”

“Why are you telling me this?” The man asked.

“Because it is required of me, much as things will be required of you.”

"Required by who?" He demanded.

No one answered his question, the cellar was once more silent.

Part four: Mid-world writings  

Posted by The Alchemist in

-4-

Hunger had brought him back. The fact that it was dark and cold outside only made it worse. He had been kneeling at the edge of the trap door that led down into the cellar for the last fifteen minutes and still hadn’t worked up the nerve to venture in there without a light. (bright white light?) Something about that place frightened him, put him on edge. He had never been a superstitious man, but if he sat there any longer he might become one.

I can’t believe your afraid of the dark, his brain said.

Can’t you feel it?! His heart snapped. There is something down there.

Children are afraid of the dark, what are you, a little boy?

Haven’t you ever seen any movies?! His heart shot back. THIS is the part where the creepy music starts playing, the part where you start screaming at the TV, telling the moron on it to get the heck away from that dark room, and you plead with him to please see the giant man with the chain saw hiding behind the door! I see the chainsaw, in fact I can hear it running from here; I am NOT going down there!

You went down there before, nothing bad happened.

So the guy with the chainsaw dozed off for five minutes and missed us, what’s your point?!

I though my point was rather obvious. NOTHING. BAD. HAPPENED. Does that help? You’ve just got a bad case of the creeps.

Can’t you just wait till morning? His heart pleaded.

Once again, you're just afraid of the dark. There is nothing bad down there, and no boogie man is going to jump out and get you. Just ease your way down the ladder, grope around on the shelf, grab a few cans of Girt (Spam) and you can get out of here.

...

Come on, this is foolish, you’re a grown man.

There was something else though. He could hear that voice, still whispering. It was almost like someone mumbling in their sleep. The words echoed in the cellar, unnaturally.

There was nothing for it; either go down there, or starve, he told himself. He grimaced, gripped the rungs of the old ladder, and made his way down.

Part three: Mid-world writings  

Posted by The Alchemist in

-3-


The shade of the building kept the worst of the heat off his head as he sat and ate from the cans of Girt. After finishing them he found a rock and bashed on one end of a corn can until he made a hole big enough to get some out. The ground drank up the juice that was spilt.


(white light)


After finishing his meal he went back to the stables to drink some more water. Eating had given him time to think. Running past the front of the old outpost was a semi paved road going roughly east and west judging by the sun. There was enough food and water here to last a good while but not enough to last forever. It was time to go exploring.


He walked around the outpost for miles, coming back every so often for more water. There wasn’t much to see other than sun baked earth. To the west at least he could see hints of mountain on the horizon. That was something at least.


There was something nagging him (white), had been nagging since he had woke up. He could remember something about before ( bright white); he remembered a color.


It was white.


He kept remembering the feeling of white almost like he had been encased in it; it had been light and it had been material all at the same time. Whatever it was it was close, like the name of an old acquaintance on the tip of your tongue.


By the time he had called it quits for the day he felt baked, like his brain had been cooked inside his head. He went back into the stable and dozed for a time. His dreams were white.