Broken from Reality

I always wondered what it would be like to experience a dream on the same scale that we lived our tedious lives: Now however, I wish I never had the thought as I'm now trapped within, broken free of my Earth bound body and stuck in this 'other' world that mere humans should never want to be in. I am broken in mind, body and soul... I am...broken from reality...

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4. The Journey Homewards

   I felt the transcendance of passing from reality to dream shortly before becoming conscious once again in the guest room of Feher's and Noir's cottage hideaway. Now.. normally I would be expecting to be in night clothes and have to be dressed but in the world of Ebonshroud things such as clothes were well... rather a secondary to living I suppose. When I opened my eyes however I almost lept out of the bed as seeing a pair of grey brown eyes when you first wake up startles the dickens out of you.

   "Jesus Mary and Joseph!" I squeaked as I hit the ground, sputtering some rather vulgar language as I untangled myself from the sheets. I shot Feher with a stare of daggers as I confronted him. "Feher! What's the bloody idea of staring at me like that!?"

   "I'm sorry," he smiled coyly as he sat himself upon the edge of the bed, "You just look kinda cute when you sleep... You know your hair and skin color changes abit when you sleep? Makes you seem more... normal I guess." It was strange to me how it seemed to me that, upon first meeting the two twins Feher seemed so benign but now... 

   "Hey, are you up yet pale face?" came the cold voice of Noir, "Come on, you're our master so we have to help you in your journey." He came around the corner, his arms crossed with a hint of impatience that was shrouding a sense of nervousness.

   "Fine..." I answered as I slipped my shoes on and put my jacket back over my vest. "Let's go."

   "Yay!" Feher danced about with excitement, "We're leaving, we're leaving!" He disappeared out the doorway and was headed towards the front door to the house. I stopped in the doorway and asked his brother the following.

   "Is he always like...that?"

   "He's just tired of hiding," Noir answered in a slightly warmer voice, "And frankly, I'm tired of hiding too, so again, let's get this journey underway, shall we?" He moved out after his twin leaving me in the doorway to ponder my thoughts for a brief moment.

   "Pale Face!" that was was Noir's voice, "Get out here! Quick!" He sounded like he was in a bit of trouble and so I hurried out to the front of the house where I beheld a sight: a man clad in woodland colored robes was outside, two leather collars which ran to two enormous beasts on one hand and a iron cross of strange shape in the other with poor Feher caught in his arms.

   "What the devil!?" I screamed as I emerged from the house, "Be still! All of you!" I commanded as I stepped forth to Noir's side. "You there, mountain man. What horrid farce is this!?" 

   "A farce not!" he responded in a deep might voice that resembled gargling gravel. "These two demons are on the town's bounty! I've come to collect it. Be ye a demon like them boy?"

   "Most certainly not! However..." I answered with angry defiance as I clasped onto Noir's hand. "I am their friend and master! If ye've a problem with them, you take it up with me!" He just spat a large wad of mucus and phlegm onto a nearby rock as he then proceeded to place a patch of tobacco in his mouth and laugh.

   "You're their master?" he chewed on the tobacco mindlessly, his teeth staining a yellowish orange from the juices. "Well then, looks like I'll be gettin' an even bigger bounty... Now, how's about you just come quietly with this here brother's sibling there and we can avoid any blood shed-"

   "That's a bloody Lie!" Noir shouted, "I know for a fact that damn village is only interested in us being dead!" His eyes were filling with tears, but not of sadness; these tears were hate filled, ones that longed for and would only be quenched by bloodshed. "Pale face... what's yer actual name?"

   "Mason," I answered without thinking, "Why?"

   "Call to my spirit, make me take on my weapon form," he looked right at the big man in the overcoat and smiled wickedly as his eyes flared white for a moment. "I want his blood, I want him to know that you can't mess with my family and get away with it..."

   "Noir..."

   "DO IT!" He screamed as the man laughed and released his two beasts upon us. I remember yelling for him and the next thing I remember there was a series of gunshots I think as for when I regained my senses the two beasts lie dead and in my hand was some sort of handgun that was clad in black metal with silver trim and fine ornate etchings in a deep crimson. I noted that it wasn't a revolver and it had a clip for ammunition and the hammer seemed to feed off a blowback of the main barrel which rest upon a simple slide.

   "A semi-automatic handgun?" I whispered as I looked the weapon over. That's when I noticed that the pentagram like symbol on my left hand was burning crimson as the hand held onto the handgun. "Noir? Is that you in my hand? You're... you're a gun!?"

   "Well, our geist waffe varies depending on our master but, aye, I'm the gun in your hand here," I couldn't physically see it but in my mind I could sense that he was grinning with pride. "Pretty neat, huh?"

   "Yes well, we're just lucky that I thinking of hunting with father otherwise you probably wouldn't be a gun right now," I smiled weakly, "I don't particularly care for them, I find them... a bit too unrefined I guess. Under normal circumstances you'd probably would have become a sword."

   "You're a strange one, you know that?" I could hear his voice in my head and at first I found it quite disturbing but considering where I was, I guess it made sense. "Come on now, we've a miserable old man to finish."

   "The old man's gone brother..." It was Feher who had come to stand beside me as he gently took his brother from me and looked him over. "Your new form is rather nice, Noir, you should be proud."

   "Alright, both of you, weaponize, I'm not going through town with you two in tow, we'll get attacked at every turn," I smiled as I took both of them in hand and started back towards the town.

********************

   Once we were aboard the paddle steamer and headed back to the palace on the island I relaxed a bit and allowed the two to retake their human forms. Once they could stretch themselves out they immediately began to explore the ship. 

   "Oh this is amazing!" Feher exclaimed as he wandered about the deck, marveling at the ship's humble grandeur. "Never been on a real ship before, tis an amazing thing!"

   "Easy Feher," Noir smiled for once, "I don't want to have to save you cause you fell overboard in yer excitement." The thin smile on his face immediately twisted into a minor scowl when he saw that I was watching them. I just rolled my eyes and wandered back into the ship's wheel house and waited for the island to come into view. 

   "Hey, Mason?" Feher's voice broke me out of my thoughts. "Who are you, really?"

   "Hmm?"

   "My brother's curious as to who exactly are you?" Noir came into the cabin after his brother, "Come to think of it, so am I." They each pulled out a chair from the desks behind and sat down and stared. "So come on then, tell us, who exactly are you?" 

   Now that threw me for a bit of a loop. What could I tell them? If I said they were nothing more than figments of the imagination of my mind then they'd probably laugh and write me off as a lunatic. Conversely, I wasn't sure really considering that in most of my dreams involving Ebonshroud, I never really conversed with anyone, I just wandered and they ignored me as if I was as much a ghost to them as they were to me. I thought about it for a bit before I remembered that Ebonshroud was indeed a world by my whim and thus, what I imagined or said would, by that logic, be reality here.

   "My family are the proprietors of this region of land, I am the noble's son," I smiled as I returned to the window, hoping that the island would soon be in view. "Currently, while my father is away, I am to take hold of the land." They seemed to buy the story much to my relief. 

   "Look!" Feher smiled as he shot up and ran to the window. "My, what a nice island and what a nice house!" He turned to me and smiled, our hands becoming entangled with eachother's. "You live here?"

   "And now so do you two, as long as we're bonded together that is," I had the sudden urge to mess up his hair and so I did. Noir looked up to see what we were doing only because he heard his brother squeal and then giggle when I started to mess with his hair.

   "Hey now, cut that out!" He raised his voice slightly as he got up and began to come our way. He only stopped as he saw that his brother wan't in any inherent pain, moreover, he seemed to enjoy it. "Hey, can I get in on this?" I responded by doing the same thing to him and like his brother he laughed and began to instinctively fidget. 

********************

   A short time later we arrived back onto the island and as soon as the gangplank was dropped the pair of brothers began to wander about like curious felines just come to a new home fresh from the pound. They looked in every shelter, every shack and smiled as the came back to me as I descended after them. 

   "Is there no one here on this island?" they asked together in a strange unison. When their voices came together it sounded a bit eerie, almost phantom like in the echoing resonance it had. 

   "Aside from when father is home, there are a few caretakers but otherwise-"

  "We're alone!" Feher smiled with glee, "None of those scummy village folk to torment us!"

   "Yeah, maybe we can get some peace for once then," Noir smiled as he leaned on my shoulder, "Now, care to show us to your wonderful abode so we may change into clothes suited to your liking, oh master of ours..." he whispered in an almost serpent like manner. It was then that we embarked to the manor house on foot through the grove of twisted and mangled looking ravenoak trees that covered the island. 

   "My apologies for the lack of carriage service," I called to the twins who were straggling behind a bit. "I thought a good walk was in order, it'll make your appreciation of the manor a bit higher I suppose." I laughed as I kept walking as I could only feel that one of them was smiling of whimsy while the other was giving me a cold glare. Arriving at the manor, I opened the doors and allowed them entry before closing the doors behind us. The Ivory Palace was much like Crawford Manor aside from the fact that it was twice as large and had many more intricate passageways and rooms. That, and like the name suggests, it was almost primarily a scheme of ivory, whites, opaque pearl and greys and blacks. The occasional gold came from the mantels and candelabres that ran about the palace like at the manor. 

   "This way lads," I notioned as I wandered up the central stairwell and then stepped onto the separation bearing to the left towards the East Wing of the palace. "My room and what shall be yours are this way."

   "This place is huge..." Noir whispered to himself as he looked around in what appeared to be a dazed wonder as Feher clung to his arm and walked behind him in even pace. I found it oddly amusing how they were twins and yet in comparison of personalities, they were very opposing of one another. Feher seemed like the classic younger brother who always sought logic but was terrified or skiddish around everything and anyone new in his life. In contrast, there was Noir, who was adventurous, but also very brasin and stubborn along with minorly hot-headed. 

   "And these will be your rooms," I broke their daze as I quickly moved about the hall and threw open two different doors. The rooms were identical in every way, save for the fact that it was like a mirrored image of the other room. Each had a bed that was about somewhere between a queen size and twin size as the Americans labeled them. Each was pure white in bedding save for the top sheet which was a light, ashen grey. The carpets were also a light ashen grey to both accent and lend contrast to the opaque pearl toned walls. A dresser with mirror and work desk accompanied by a standing lamp was also present. The door on the other side of the room led into a walk-in closet that was one with the other (meaning that if one brother went into their door of the closet and walked to and opened the door on the other side, they'd end up in their twin's room).

   "Thanks but, one room will do well for us," Noir smirked as he flopped onto the bed.

   "We really don't do well separated," Feher smiled as he moved past me to join his brother on the bed. "Thank you for the offer though." I smiled and thought to myself how these two were definitely a unique pair. 

   "Hmm... It's getting late," I looked out the window noticing the sinking sun. "Jesus, getting from the cottage to the town and back here took longer than I thought it would." I mosied over to the doorway, turning to say one final thing to the pair. "Sleep well, tomorrow we start our journey together... Now, I bid thee a good night."

   As I wandered back to my room within the Palace I flopped onto the bed and kicked off my shoes, coat and vest and rolled onto my side, examining the amethyst ring still on my hand. "Tomorrow, I will begin again... But now atleast I have someone to share the time spent here with me..." 

   

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