Tag Archive: Darius


Memoirs of an Amnesiac

Chronicler Darius Mnemnos gazed at the tall blond fey for a long time as the man gathered his thoughts. “I’m supposed to tell you about things I’ve experienced in the wilds of Donara,” he said finally. “The thing is… I don’t really remember anything at all. The earliest thing I remember was Llar… Kassel, I mean, finding me and waking up from that pod. I don’t really remember how I got into the pod, not specifically.”

“Tell me what you do remember,” Darius said, pen poised above the paper.

“Rasig, a crow-fey and minor lord in Donara wanted me to work for him as a thief but… I refused. He was the kind of person who used people, then threw them away and I didn’t want a piece of that,” Almace began.

As usual Darius’s vision of the world around him faded away as he saw the past. Almace stood, glaring defiance at a dark haired fey. They were in a library of some sort. “I know what you do with people who aren’t of any more use to you, Rasig. Why would I want to work for you, even for one job. I have a partner, I don’t need to take up with the likes of you.”

The crow-fey twitched his wings in annoyance a sighed. His voice seemed calm, almost urbane, as he said, “I feared you’d see things that way. Believe me, Master Pinc, you would be much better served accepting my offer.”

Almace rolled his eyes and took a step back, obviously intending to leave. “Right, I’ll pass.” He made as if to leave and the crow-fey struck with almost blinding speed. Over the wind fey’s protests, Rasig dragged him down a corridor and out into a strange garden.

Darius recognized the plants, even if Almace did not. A part of him quailed back from the vision but he couldn’t help but follow it to the end. “What… what is this place? What are those things?” Almace asked as Rasig released him. There was nowhere he could go now.

“Memory plants,” Rasig replied coolly. “Are you feeling tired?”

Almace staggered as his eyes drifted shut. He forced them open as vines snaked out to pull him toward one of the pods that hung, open, from the main body of the plant. “I… think I’ve changed my mind,” he murmured. “Rasig… I’ll work for you, please. Get this thing off. Let me go.”

Rasig smiled and stepped back away as the vines drew Almace deeper into the pod. “You will work for me. I’ll let you out when the pod has taken enough of your memories that you don’t know who I am. You’ll still have the skills that I’ll want but… you’ll be more biddable toward your… savior.”

“No,” Almace murmured. He was getting so drowsy now. “No please. Lord Rasig, please.” Then the pod closed over his face and darkness swept in.

Darius came back to himself with a start and shuddered at the crow-fey’s plan. He looked down at the paper he held. All the information was written there. Almace may never remember all the particulars of that day, but at least he’d be able to read about what had happened. “Rasig was… pretty scary,” he said.

Almace nodded once and murmured, “That much I do remember.”

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Fractal Edges

Darius read over the book a third time, just to be sure that he understood the directions. More and more often, he was lapsing into visions. This book proclaimed to have ideas on how to slow down their frequency.

The simplest one seemed to be to get someplace safe and secluded and bring one on. It appeared that he would have the visions either way, but – similar to how dogs taught to ‘speak’ were less likely to bark indiscriminately – bringing them on in specific circumstances served to give a measure of control.

As such, he was imagining a triangle with triangles multiplying inside it, becoming smaller and smaller until the whole of the triangle was filled with them. He then repeated the process, and again until his vision grew hazy and then clouded over.

The emperor sat reading a book. He was curled up; his feet tucked into the chair under him. The fire in the hearth had burned low. As Darius watched, he realized that this was the emperor at a much younger age. He was still the prince.

His suspicions were confirmed when an oni peeked into the room and said, “Highness, isn’t it past your bedtime?”

“Yes, Henry,” the young prince said as he set the book aside. As he left the room, the vision faded.

Darius sat up, blinking in shock. It was perhaps the first time he’d had a vision that didn’t involve death. He grinned down at the book in his hand and murmured, “Fractals, hm?”

Bring me Lasting Light

Darius looked up into the trees in wonder. Legends had told of this place but he never expected to see it with his own eyes. The flowers on the trees glowed faintly. Stories held that if you plucked the blossoms the light would never fade. Darius wondered, since no one had seen this place in centuries, what happened if you didn’t pluck them but let them grow. He wondered if the fruit of the trees glowed as well. He sat, watching the trees, for hours in silence.

He dosed off after some time and woke to the sound of footsteps. Still silent in the thicket he’d nestled in he watched as giant oni prodded smaller fey-like beings toward the glowing trees. The small beings plucked the blossoms with a show of great reluctance. Darius stared in shock as they ate the glowing flowers. When they had consumed the flowers, their eyes took on a strange appearance. Their pupils and irises disappeared and the whites took on the same strange glow that had been in the flower.

“Now they’re ready for the mines,” one oni said as he led the fey out of the forest. Darius stood silently and shook his head. The legends had never mentioned eating the flowers. However, he wondered if the glow would fade from the feys’ eyes. He wondered if they were blinded or if they now would see in the darkness of the mines. Silently he crept after the oni. It was his duty as a chronicler to find out.

I Feel About Average

Darius looked up at his master and sighed.  Why was the man so interested in him?  What was so important about him?  He looked over the notes that the man had provided for him to turn into a chronicle.  He read them once… then twice.  Then his eyes started clouding over.  He couldn’t read.  He tried to force his eyes back into focus.  He didn’t succeed.  The words totally went out of focus.

 **

A girl was sitting in a beautiful garden.  She was beautiful herself.  A flowy gown draped over her curves.  She was reading a small book.  She set the book down and smiled, eyes half closed.

 Suddenly hands caught her from behind.  She screamed and struggled but no one came to help.  Darius could see who was attacking her.  She was thrown back to the ground.  Her gown was drawn up over her head.  Something glinted in the sunlight.  Then there was a splash of blood… a scream that cut off.

 The girl twitched and screamed.  More blood flowed.  Her gown was removed along with the rest of her clothes.  Then she was still.  The scene faded from view.

 Darius flew out of the chair and landed on the floor.  His stomach emptied before he had time to process where he was.  “You saw something?” he heard someone say softly.

 “She was killed.  He killed her.  Oh sweet Fates… oh Fates!  He killed her,” he started murmuring hysterically.

 “Not plants?”

 “No… no plants… no plants… it was a… a deiva with a knife.  He stabbed her again and again.  I don’t know why.  He just… just killed her.”  Darius looked up and found his master looking down at him.

 “Sorry,” the older man said.  He started to draw Darius to his feet but the younger chronicler shook his head.  “Need some time?” he asked, tilting his head.

 “What was that?” he asked.

 “A retrocognitive vision,” the older man said.  “You are very special.”

 “No… I’m… just…,” Darius murmured.

 “A very special hal-deiva, my boy,” he returned with a smile.  “The report, you see, had her as a victim of a plant attack.”

Only Violets Remain

Darius gazed out into the garden.  The grass was a vibrant green, as it always was in Mag Mell.  It was early enough in the season that none of the garden flowers had bloomed.  However, the tree had bloomed earlier in the week and wildflowers dotted the grass.

 “It’s beautiful,” his wife murmured.

 “It is, even without the cultivated flowers in bloom,” he agreed.  “It was even more so when the trees were in bloom but now all the petals are falling off.”

 “Now it’s just the mayflowers,” she said.  Darius blinked in confusion and then remembered the old name for the purple and white flowers that dotted the grass.  There was something about the wildflowers standing in for the cultivated flowers that reminded him of how the hal-deiva, like he and his wife, interacted with the full deiva.

 “Only the violets, until the rest of the garden blooms.  The violets will do,” he finished, hugging her.

Orbsen sat in the garden.  Now that the weather was returning to its normal warmth, he could without his oni and other servants fearing that he’d take ill.  All around the cherry trees were blooming.  They looked like pink clouds.

 In the human world they would shed the blossoms within weeks.  Here too the petals would soon coat the ground in a strange sort of snow.  However, the blooms would form on the branches again almost as soon as they dropped.  It was the magic of Mag Mell.

 “Hello,” a soft voice greeted.  Orbsen looked up and smiled.  He didn’t know the person but he sensed only good intentions.  Sometimes his half-trained gift of empathy came in handy.  “I hope you don’t think that I’m terribly bold but… I was wondering if you would talk to be about your experiences outside of Mag Mell.  I’m writing a chronicle regarding the dangers of the wilds and… um,” the young man trailed off uncertainly.

 “What did you want to know?” Orbsen asked softly.  If this man was writing about the wilds, it stood to reason that he would travel there at some point.  Perhaps Orbsen could finally find out what happened to his youngest brother, lost for so long.

Today and Today Also

Darius sighed as he looked out over the ocean.  His visions had been strange lately.  He didn’t need to seem outside stimulus anymore.  All he need to do was wonder about something and he’d see it.  They had also shifted from merely showing the past to showing what was going to happen and even what was happening in another area.

 He sat on a log and opened his book.  He was intending to write about the faeries he’d seen flitting among the flowers that dotted the shore.  Suddenly the page swam out of focus.

 *

Miraro lighted on a flower and leaned in to sip the sweet nectar.  Suddenly, something caught him from behind.  He had enough time to cry out before his breath was cut off by a rope-like appendage that his captor wrapped around his neck.  His legs kicked almost spasmodically and all around him he could see other faeries in similar situations.  His whole tribe was dying before his eyes.  Then the world faded to dark.

 *

Darius came out of the vision coughing and gagging as if he’d been the one strangled to death.  He looked up and saw the faeries still flitting among the flowers.  His eyes widened as he saw Miraro.  The faerie was imminently recognizable by his bright blue hair and matching bat-like wings.

 “Look out!” he shouted as he saw the faerie hovering over the flower he’d landed on in the vision.  Faeries, he’d always been told were very shy.  His outcry scattered them to the four winds.  Beneath the sands something writhed, angry at having lost its meal.  Darius sighed in relief and sat back on the log.

Monica Ferris

an author with many hats

A Land of Curiosity

From the files of Shynian Intelligence

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tales from the enchanted gardens and shadow hollow

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