The Chronicles of Starlyn

For generations it has been known that elves are immortal except for death by battle or poison. Something strange happens and Starlyn's mother becomes sick with an illness that seems to only be getting worse with each passing day. Starlyn loves her mother and wishes to find any way to help her, yet it seems nothing can be done except to sit and watch. It breaks her spirit but she spends every moment she can with her mother, as she fights frantically for an unknown cure. She went to the elven healers and herbalists but even they cannot find a way. Meanwhile Starlyn's sister Arria takes more drastic measures to try and help their mother, even diving into the restricted books of the elven library about dark magic. The dark magic is dangerous and forbidden for elves to use because it is said that even the willpower of an elf cannot prevail with the touch of a dark taint. Arria is not concerned of her own welfare and dives into heavy studies with the books. Strange things begin to happen, a

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3. Chapter 2

Chapter 2:

 

                Arria knelt on the ground, feeling clam beneath the starlit sky. She wondered why she didn’t feel cold. Nothing seemed to chill her anymore. Her clothes were gone, burnt from the fire the magic created. She sat there naked, staring at her changed appearance. Her skin that was once a plae white had turned dark. It looked like a soft black as if she rubbed charcoal all over herself. The color would not change no matter how hard she rubbed at it. She admired the color, finding it more beautiful than the pale white of all the elves.

                Dying was fresh in her mind. It felt like a dream even when she half expected it to feel like a nightmare. The feeling when life left her was both frightening and thrilling. It was frightening when she laid there not knowing which breath would be her last. However, the rush of feeling and emotions in her last seconds was exhilarating. The things she thought about wanting to accomplish before she died was enough to make anyone’s head spin.

                The worst part about her death was the fact that it laid at the hands of her sister. She didn’t watch as her sister released the arrow, but she remembered her sister’s face as she held the bow. Tears fell across her face because she was torn. Arria always knew the choice that Starlyn would make. Rules were a higher concern to her than Arria. They always had been. In the past it was always Arria that had gotten her sister into trouble, although that wasn’t how their mother saw it.

                She remembered the arrow penetrating her back and collapsing onto the ground. All hope of saving her mother had been lost in that instant. Starlyn was too weak to do what it took to save their mother. It seemed Starlyn felt she had jumped the bow in taking action in black magic. Perhaps it didn’t cross her mind that Arria had already tried everything else before shakily picking up the forbidden black leather book.

                Arria still had the book, although she wasn’t sure how when all of her clothes and belongings were burned. In fact, she wasn’t sure how she came from the burnt ruins of her cabin to where she sat presently. It all seemed a hazy and distant memory – almost like a flash of memories out of order. The person that clumsily wandered through the forest and away from Sudegam didn’t feel like her. More than anything else it felt like a distant mirage that she observed rather than lived.

                She had to move her long silky snowy white hair out of her face to study the book in her hand. White was its new color as it had been as black as the darkest shadows before her death. She had prized herself of her dark hair that matched that of her mother, but now the white was still hard to get used to. Credit was given to her for originality, because she had never seen an elf with such pure white hair. There were many blondes and hair of gold, like that of her sister, but other than that it was only browns, blacks, and some redheads.

                Arria always wanted to be unique, one of a kind, but always felt out of place in a world of elves where everyone seemed to do things in unison. She never enjoyed doing the same tasks day in and day out. Life was too boring, though not short, to get repetitive. The rules of the elves kept them from doing too much, and so she would always leave it for more exciting things. It was something her sister, Starlyn, never understood. However, Starlyn had only known the world inside of Sudegam, except for the little adventures that Arria would bring her on. She hadn’t met any other species or creatures like Arria had. There were many things outside the walls of the city. Starlyn hadn’t even seen humans before, while Arria had. Humans were intriguing creatures, with their short lives.

                When she was attempting to rid the poison or disease that her mother had, she chose the simplest black magic spell. There weren’t any large sacrifices besides that of small animals and a lot of herbal mixes into the boiling pot. It was the safest spell if done properly, but the most damaging if not, to herself. That was why she chose to follow that one compared to the rest. She wasn’t prepared to harm any of the elves, or even humans, to save her mother – yet herself… she wasn’t so worried about.

                She failed the moment Starlyn came to her door, she knew that now. Oddly enough she didn’t blame Starlyn for killing her. In the beginning she had been furious, although who wouldn’t after being shot in the back by their sister. Arria could see her sister’s perspective, and she forgave her. It was the elves of Sudegam that she couldn’t forgive. They did nothing to help her mother, and condemned her for studying the one thing that could save her. She had known for years that the elves foolish rules would be their undoing. However, she never expected it to be her that began the split. Life for elves would be chaos now; she would make sure of that.

                The rest of the spells in the black book were complex with the beating hearts of pure souls required. She knew she would have to kill this time. Strangely enough, she wasn’t repulsed by it. She knew that as an elf it should be against her nature. However, she was no longer an elf. Those same fashions no longer applied to her.

                It felt strange to no longer have a beating heart. There was a time where she would lay for hours counting her heartbeats. She was afraid she would never be able to count them again. Her heart didn’t beat, it was dead. Perhaps that was why she didn’t have concerns for the welfare of the elves, but why then did she still care for Starlyn so much? And her mother. The will to save her mother still run through her non-pumping blood strong.

                Even her lungs stopped working. She hadn’t realized it before, but she hadn’t been breathing for hours. The constant contractions of her lungs raising her chest up and down were no longer required. She wondered if it was at all possible for her to die again if she didn’t need a heart or lungs. Was it the magic that kept her alive?

                Instead of blood pumping through her veins it felt like tingling flows of magic that flowed through her now. She knew if she could harness it that she could do things that hadn’t been possible in centauries. It was as if the dawn of dragons was resurfacing. So much power flowed through her, though she knew not how to harness it into something she could control. Only more studying could give her an idea of her abilities, and so she continued reading. Life on earth after death was considered the undead, and from what she could read – it was not a common thing without the knowledge to bring it forth. It seemed that if she could figure out how to do it that she might be able to bring the dead back to life to serve her.

                She laughed at the thought of bringing dead humans and elves from the grave and away from their gods to march upon Sudegam. Perhaps then the chaos created would focus the elves into doing what was right. The idea was appealing to her, yet she knew she wasn’t strong enough yet. She wondered how long it would take to get skilled in black magic before she could create something like that. Patience had never been her strong suit, and so she left that to her sister Starlyn.

                Broken twigs in the night startled her and so she rose to her feet. Creatures appeared in the meadow from the forest and surrounding her on the hilltop, all the while crunching on the colorful autumn leaves around her. There were a total of seven of them, with long snouts black in color, and long sharp teeth. Besides tunics at their waste they were without clothes and their hardened scales sparkled in dazzling colors in the moonlight. Long tales cascaded across the ground behind their feet and they snarled at her.

                She knew she was far from Sudegam now, but she had never been so far as to see these creatures. They looked like the small lizards that climbed the trees in the forest, although black instead of green. The most similar appearance she could fathom of them was from pictures she had seen in elven history books, although in pictures she imagined them much larger.

                “Dragons…” She whispered.

                “Taaaakkee heeerr.” Slithered a voice beyond her sight.

                Three of them jumped on her, but she was too quick. She grabbed her soft white hair with her left hand and ducked beneath an incoming swing of a clawed fist. Another claw came towards her face and she rolled on the ground to avoid a few stomps. When she rose to her feet she circled a kick into the jaw of one and felt break against her flesh. Her foot throbbed afterwards, but the tradeoff was well worth it. She punched a few others, dropping them to the ground, but she was without weapon to defend herself. One pushed her to the ground and held her as another tried to mount her. Disgust flared in her mouth as she wiggled her way free.

                She would not let these creatures use her in any way. Anger flared in her veins and she felt the magic pulsing through her. Flicking her hair in the air it came in contact with two of the creatures and they fell back, burning at the face. She dug her claws into another two that rushed at her, tearing out their eyes. They would not touch her.

                The sound of snapping necks echoed around her as she finished the seventh. She slowly spun around, observing the bodies that surrounded her. There were all seven, all of those except the voice she had heard. Take her, it had said. Not kill her, but take her. She knew what it meant now. Whatever these creatures were, they weren’t about to kill.

                She stood alone at the top of the hill with the red and yellow leaves blowing across her feet. Even though she didn’t need oxygen to survive anymore she found herself panting. Bewilderment struck her, but she decided it was the excitement of the attack. Excitement… what a word to call it. She would have never thought it to be excitement to snap the neck of anybody before, but this time it felt like a rush of power. Her life, overpowering theirs. She wiped her hand across her face, amazed to see it covered in blood. In fact, blood dripped down her whole naked body. Some of it was blue, which seemed to be coming from her. She found that as odd as well, because as an elf it would have been red. The black was from the reptiles, the dragons, or whatever they were. The only reason she knew that was because she could see it spilling out of them on the ground.

                Crunching leaves echoed in her ears and she swiftly turned around with her fists up. A lone dragon was approaching, both claws down at its sides and open. There seemed to be no desire for it to attack her and so she let her guard down, only slightly.

                “Veeerrrry niiiccee. Immpressssivee.”

                “What are you?” She asked.

                “Sssjoin ussss, leeaad ussss.”

                “Lead you?”

                “Yeesssss.”

                “Why?”

                “Prophecccy, telllssss ussss theee darrrk oneee willll cooomee, desssstroyy ourrr bessst warrriorrs, annnd leaaad ussss to doominanccce ovverrr thisss lanndd.”

                She considered his words for a moment. It was strange that these creatures could have prophets. Especially when she hadn’t even heard of them. She expected it was another thing the elves were hiding from its general public, and so it didn’t surprise her as much as she had thought it was. However, the more she thought about it, no matter if it was truly her they were seeking or not. She considered that having these creatures behind her, or at her side, could be beneficial to her in her plans of conquest against the elves. And in hopes to capture her mother in order to save her.

                “I will lead you.”

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