Fairy tales are for humans. And they know nothing of the truth. But if you must know, here is a real story.
All I remember of my youth is my mother. There wasn't much more to my life then. I lived with her wherever she took me. I was happiest when we had a place to call home. Sometime we did and sometimes we didn't, but at least I had her.
She taught me all sorts of wondrous things, each more amazing than the last. Even when they were warnings, her lessons were wonderful to me.
I still remember the day she told me to sit as still as I could. I tried, but her movements entranced me - I had to watch. The trees seemed to dance with her and the sun appeared to shine down only for her wings. The clouds came to crown her hair and the dew rose to glisten her cheeks and eyes more than they already were. For one moment, it felt like I saw the magic of the world. And then she touched me, and it tickled, and I couldn't help but move as I broke out in laughter... and the beauty around me shattered. But back in the normalcy that was everyday life, my mother simple smiled at me. She turned my head back to the position it was supposed to be, and touched my cheek again. I did my best not move this time. She used some brush I could only feel to draw a triangle, then let me go. Ever since that moment her spells worked on me as they did her.
I later learned that triangle means Youth. It has stayed with me until this day. No matter how hard it's washed, rubbed... or cut. It's a symbol of the magic within. Within me. All I do not know is why my mother placed it on me for the world to see. For it makes me a target.
When I was young and afraid of things that scare children, my mother would lull me to sleep at night with the same rhyme.
"Go to sleep, slumberling
No one will wake you.
I promise to watch So
no human can take you."
That lullaby has stuck with me because of what it didn't teach me. When I was young, my mother constantly warned me about humans. I eventually learned my father had been human, but mother never said anything more about him. Humans were worse than our own kind, she told me. Whenever we had been near a town, other Sidhe parents wouldn't let me play with the children my age. Mother told me it was because they were afraid, because my father was human it meant I was half human and so the Sidhe didn't know what I might do. I never did anything, not back then. But mother and I would still have to leave soon after I was ever seen playing with another child, sometimes fast in the middle of the night. She didn't explain why, and I stopped asking. It was clear it was because of my human father.
We never saw any humans, yet mother put the fear of them in me anyway. But in the end, it wasn't a human that took me.
My mother didn't try to fight, for she was unprepared when the Taur came. Her last words to me were "You can't die, little one. Remember this: you - can't - die." If they killed her, I do not know. We were separated quickly, and I was given a new life. It was awful, but not for the reasons you would think. The pain caused to me as they taught me obedience was new and so I found it interesting. I didn't know there were so many ways to be hurt. I did tire of it, which is when I learned how to act properly. The Satyr varied in personalities as any races do, so I was at no lack for social interaction when a Taur wasn't around to care. In fact, that was the only time in my life thus far I have had friends. What an amazing thing to have, friendship, an incredible feeling. And with the Taurs I even I had a consistent place to call home. I lived in the same place longer with them than I had at any other point, apparently that matters to me. But all the good of it could not outweigh the bad. I had never been without my mother, and I felt lost on my own. Bigger still, after all my life of constantly growing, learning in everything I did and saw and heard, it was torture to be forced to the same set of tasks over and over again, day in and day out. Once I had learned all I could, I was not allowed to learn any more, about anything. That, was the worst of it.
As with every story, there is at least one pivotal point. For me, this one came the day the Taurs were attacked. It was a surprise to all, who would attack a Taur village? But they did. Beings I could not name. I have seen Orc, I have seen Wilde, I have seen Ogar and obviously several kinds of Sidhe. The attackers where nothing like these, though I think I saw an Elf or two, and definitely an Orc with them. It finally dawned on me that they must be human.
The Taur started to lay waste to them, but they kept coming and fighting. They were well trained together, and displayed tactics better than the Taur. There had to be a hundred of them, if not more. In the middle of the battle, one fell near where my friends and I were hiding, watching. Its sword clattered as it hit the ground and came to a rest a hair more than an arm's reach away from me.Pick it up,
I heard a voice in my mind. I shook my head no.This is your chance, it won't last long. You can get away, if you just pick it up,
the voice encouraged me. It sounded like my own voice. But I didn't know how to use a sword. Yes, you do,
My voice assured me. Pick it up!
I was uncertain, but the thought of being able to get back out in the world was too luring. I looked around first, then hesitantly reached out and grabbed the hilt of the sword. I had to just barely leave the protection of the hiding place to get it, and by the time my hand was on it I was spotted. Now committed to a sequence of actions that was sure to get me killed, I quickly rolled off so as not to give the others away. I surprised myself with the amount of ability I had to block swings coming my way. And that's all I did as I backpedaled to the nearest edge of town. Much to my continued surprise, more than one human attempted to aid me, and did. But a twist of fate, and my ankle, brought my sword down wrong in a moment where a Taur and a human were both converging and I struck the human. Confused by the turn of events, the human lost his life to the Taur, but to my benefit the Taur left me alone, under the same impression the human had been that I was on my "master's" side. We three were not the only ones who saw what happened. The last being between myself and my freedom was a human, who cut me down.
It was when I woke up that I first started to learn again. The battle still raged, and I wondered why I was okay. Had the human missed somehow? I checked myself, and there was no wound. Only a long thin scab forming where I had been scraped by the human's sword. But there was a mighty tear in my clothing, surrounded by blood. I knew I didn't have time to sort though that enigma just then. I saw the sword I had before was still with me, so I grasped it close and started to slowly move away. I crawled as quietly and carefully as I could until I heard a call and turned to see someone had seen me.Run!
My voice, my instinct had been right so far so I had no reason to doubt it now. I scrambled to my feet and ran as fast as I could. I wasn't chased very far, the humans turned back to continue their fight. But they know. They know I helped kill one of them, and they know what I look like.
I have no idea how long I've spent wandering, constantly checking before I enter somewhere and frequently looking behind me to see if I'm being followed yet. I've stayed a couple days in a few places, but don't dare any more time in one location than that. Thankfully, in however much time is has been, I've been able to learn more. I realized my mother's final words to me were not her beseeching me to do all I could to survive, they were a last lesson. I died back in that battle, and yet I am alive. I've felt the pull of the world, or rather the magic within the world, more so since then. And one day I noticed in my reflection in a lake, that the triangle on my cheek has changed. There is a line through it now. The symbol, I've reasoned out, now means novice. I'm learning more each day, especially about magic, and I've found the more I figure out the easier it is to learn even more.
One moonless night there was a sound, and I needed to know if I was being followed but I could not see how. Scared and insistent, I accidentally called a dim gleam of light to my hand. It was fascinating. Since then I have learned how to create brighter lights also, the glow of a candle and even a beam that can pierce the darkest cave from a distance.
While I am not at all fond of the sword - I would prefer a heavier weapon I could use from any angle - I kept it with me. I've even found a way to magically make it strike deeper. It takes a great deal of my strength to cast that spell, but it's come to my aid more than once to have had it already upon the sword when defending myself against a wild animal.
I passed a town once. I don't know of what race, I did not dwell to check. I only came close enough to grab a set of clothing off a line, as mine had all but deteriorated due to my travels and hiding places. The pants are too short and the shirt is much too big, but the boots are wonderful. My poor feet have never been happier. And in the size of the shirt I found an advantage because I can tuck my wings under and cover them as well as myself with it. Since the look of my face has changed as I grow more knowledgeable, perhaps the humans will not recognize me in this shirt. Hopefully.
I recently came across a group of people traveling across the planes. At hardly more than a glance one could tell they are not a group trained together. They appeared to be simply traveling. They are lead by what feels to be a powerful creature. I held back and let them go by at first, but something beckoned to me that I should follow them. My instincts told me it was the right thing to do, even though there are humans in the group. So I went, shadowing them from as far back as I could. But they had food, which at night I was able to sneak in and steal a bit of, and a large group means protection. Wild animals and other dangers tend not to approach when out numbered so blatantly.
I've been following them for several days now. I'm sure the leader knows I'm here, I've seen him look my way multiple times. But he has not made any moves towards or against me. I think... he is simply checking that I am still there, following. I don't know where the group is headed. I've gotten close enough at night to hear some of what they talk about. Out Homes, new lives, mysteries, magic. They are woefully ignorant on that last subject. Other than that, it's actually been very interesting to listen in on their conversations. It seems, though we are different races, we are all beings called Shades. Like I, they don't die when killed, though I've learned from them eventually we could die, if we are killed enough times. And our leader is a Knight. His job to protect us, lead us to the Out Home that will be our new home, and enforce some set of laws we are all to live by. I haven't learned them all yet. Likely, at some point I will have to stop hanging back from the group, if I am to learn much more.
Labels: Alyssa, Character History, RP