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Old 03-30-2010, 12:07 PM   #1
MysticTrunks01

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Never Again Slow tired eyes opened to a darkened room where only the faintest sliver of moon light illuminated the vague shapes of furniture about the sparse but tidy room.  It had been a long day and Rolain Starfall was bone tired and while he had now slept for several hours, waking up like this he could still feel several hours of welcomed sleep ahead.   His half elven ears strained into the night, not as well as a true elf, he could still hear what his human counter-parts might miss.   A distant thud like a butcher tenderizing a large slab of beef, there it was.   The sound that had woken him from a dead sleep, he was at it again.  Likely he had been out drinking as often was the case.   He knew he should get up stop it before… Sleep pulled him unwillingly back into its comforting embrace and there was nothing more than the distant sound of shouting and cries laced into dreams. Morning came and with it the morning routine commenced the moment in the night forgotten, until he came face to puffy face with the forgotten in the hallway.  She tried to look away, covered in makeup and a hood deep over the raven black hair that hung down in curtains around the rest of her face.  Try as she might there was no hiding. Rolain touched her shoulder as she tried to skirt past him, eye averted, she jumped at the touch, “Synestra?  Are you okay?” “Fine, just fine,” she evaded with a nervous laugh, “I just tripped and fell last night.  You know, silly me, clumsy as ever.  She looked at him, he left eye half swollen, the rest of her face bruised.  Rolain wonder now if the touch was not just from fear but had actually been painful. Never before had he seen it this bad.  Everyone had known for a time what happened but it had never been like this before.  Never this bad. “It was “him” again wasn’t it?” Answer came with a darting of eyes as if he might materialize right out of the walls themselves.  “Let me take you to the doctor… please.  The Temple of Life… They can do something for you I’m sure, I know some of them.” She shook her head, the curtain of black hair moving aside to show the extent of her formerly porcelain white skin to be a blotched yellow and purple.  “No, too many questions…. They’ll.” “Fine.. fine.  We’ll do it how you want then, but you should see a healer,” he relented and insisted.  A moment of hesitation, and she nodded. A week passes.  Her pretty face slowly starts to reappear behind the colors and marks with the help of the medicines.  Rolain sees her only twice and those times fleetingly as she avoids him.  He does not take it personally; he can only guess how she must feel.  To be seen at her weakest moment by a relative stranger, just a neighbor down the hall.   He also see’s “him”.  Rolain doesn’t even know the mans name.  Nothing more than a casual nod was ever exchanged between them.   He is a big man.  Burly and muscled with a sloping brow that shadows over his beetle black eyes.   They walk toward each other in the hallway.  Something should be said, “You ever lay a hand on her again.”  “If I see…”  “If I hear one more…”   His mouth opens to speak, but closes.  The thought and sudden fear that anything said will be taken out on the woman flashes across his mind.   They pass with not a word spoken. Rolain’s work takes him out of town for four days.  On his return he sees a lone figure crying in the lobby of the rental housing.   It happened again.   Only now she is cradling an arm.   The old words are exchanged between them.  “He’s a good man… really.  I just.”  “I burnt the roast…” and the one that strikes at his heart deepest, “I had it coming.” It was that second that put the burly man on the list. Another trip to the healers, the burly man in toe, as he had seen them leaving in the direction of the Temple.  He was all smiles and charm.   A snake among men. Rolain and Synestra speaking to the nurses as the woman in white robes pleaded with her eyes to him, she wants the truth.  The truth that is sitting in the waiting room sweet as he dares, joking with those around him how she fell.  Telling a tale as great as any spinner of stories ever could. The night passes as she is helped.  Words of good-bye exchanged early in the morning as they depart.   Synestra gives a last backwards glance over her shoulder as the burly arm folds like a serpent protectively over her shoulders. It took only two days.  His name screamed in the hours just after dark and before midnight.  A blur of motion, the flash of his door opening and he stood on the outside, pounding upon the door as the scuffle of bodies moved on the other side.  Two inches of thick oak wood stood between him and the living room that had turned into a boxing ring. Three seconds with no sign at the door, taking two steps back he kicked the door as wooden splinters shattered from the lock and the door frame gave way.   The room was in shambles.  She lay in the kitchen her body heaving with sobs as he stood over her.  The burly man turned to Rolain to shout at him for invading their home, for getting involved in matters that he has no right to interfere in.    Rolain himself was already half way across the room, ready and willing to do what had to be done, when he stopped.  The man had not shouted any of the protests upon his lips.  Instead the blood drained from his face as he paled and a single blossom bloomed outward from the stem of the knife blade sticking from that place his cold heart used to beat. The man said not a word, had no time as his heart seized in his chest and his legs collapsed under him.  She stood over him, bleeding and tear streaked, but standing tall over that which took so much from her.    Her eyes were not dazed and confused but sharp as a razors edge, she had made her decision and she said in a low strong voice, “Never again.” (Inspired by Nikelbacks, "Never again")

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Rolain Starfall on Antonia Bayle
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Old 07-19-2010, 11:15 AM   #2
Jakimo

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I still think you are the best at the short story.  Thanks for another great post!

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