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1Wayward. Empty Wayward. on Wed Aug 14, 2019 1:50 pm

Xιon

Xιon


D-rank
Mission Details:
Mission name: Twilight Oath
Mission rank: D
Objective: Convince the children there are no ghost.
Location: Konoha Orphanage
Reward: Payment of 150 ryo
Mission Description: Children's complaints of inaudible whispers in the middle of the night have lead those tasked to examine the building, and convince the children that there are no spooky ghost.
Mission Details: Following the events of the previous mission, where the "The Voice" spoke to those who uprooted the cosmos, the whispers will direct them to the village orphanage, which is coincidentally having reported issues of a "wraith" in the middle of the night. The children, innocent of any danger, are unaware that the supposed spirit, is actually a Ruin, or congealed darkness, festering behind the building. Persons will destroy the blight, which should stop the mysterious whispers. However, if those tasked are of the Akui bloodlimit, The Voice will brief them on the information required to undertake "Retold Tale."


The Konoha Village Orphanage. He definitely wasn’t in the wrong place. Last time he sought out a mission, something strange happened. Less than forthcoming he would say.

He still couldn’t get it out of his head. Himself. Void light. Those wild eyes. He considered that he was the one who planted the cosmos. Unfortunately he couldn’t remember when. He’d ask who this version of him was. What he was doing.

The Orphanage. That is where he was told to go. That’s where he’d find answers. Too conveniently, there was a job posting for an overnight stay at the Orphanage. This ad was blunt, and said that they only needed help in calming the children. Preferably a Shinobi, so that the kids can feel safe. Xion couldn’t care less about the children, not in the slightest. But the coincidence gave him the spirit of inquiry to take the vision up on its task. 

He’d arrived at dusk, twilight peaking through the trees. If he didn’t have to travel on the outskirts of the village, he would have been here sooner. 

Now that he had a better look at the building, it was tiny. Pathetically so. He was already thinking of sharing the cramped quarters with the children. Detesting it so much that he turned heel to leave when a voice stopped him.

“Hello?”

“Damn.” He whispered in a thin voice. “Are you one of the Wardens that runs this place?”

Xion got a better look at the man. Light hair. Sad eyes. Dark modest clothing, and a black shawl.

“Yah?” He was rather apprehensive. “Oh. Oh. You must be here for the job. Honestly, I said that putting that ad up their wouldn’t do anything. Luckily I was wrong.” He turned heel, his robes billowed so close to the ground, it almost made him look like he was floating. “Just before sundown, too. Well you’re sure punctual.” 

A shadow grew from the building as the sun set to the west. A tall door, a not so grand entrance. There were a lack of wardens from what he could see. Most would have gone home for the night. They had their own families. Own responsibilities. Tragic for these kids, he thought. Sod the world, indeed. 

Adrenaline floods Xion’s system, It pumps and beats like it’s trying to escape. He thinks his heart will explode, and his eyes are wide with fear. His body wants to either run fast for the safety of the hills or towards the draw of his ninja pouch, but instead he remains where he is.

He sensed danger. But then he was met with clarity. Darkness is what it was. The Void. So he was in the right place afterall.

‘You are so very close, [friend]. Find me. Touch me. Make my [flesh] your’s!’

“Alright, on to business, yah?” The warden looked Xion over. Miscalculation written on his face. “I thought that maybe it was the shadows on you; I can see now that that isn’t the case.”

Xion glared. “Am I reading them bedtime stories or what?”

“Not really. Basically, they think there’s a ghost. As absurd as it sounds, they’re just kids. So make ‘em feel safe. You know, talk about--whatever it is you Shinobi do. Maybe juggle some knives?”

Xion’s mouth and eyes formed a harsh line. The warden grinned. “And if you just can’t help yourself, you can read them a bedtime story.”

The kids were the least of his concerns. He wasn’t a clown, or some cheap parlor trick. Xion peered down the corridor. The building looked a lot smaller from outside. But from the inside there were so many halls, and rooms that branched off from either wing of the building. If he were younger he could imagine himself getting lost in here.

“I’m not in charge of all of them, am I?”

“You really shouldn’t worry about that. Some of us will be here overnight. Besides, there is only one room of children having the night terrors. They keep hearing low murmurs. Something the vain of ‘the dark’. ‘The dark’.”


___



‘What is it you want? The [Void ]can give you anything.’

“Shut up.”

‘Authority? Wealth? Or is it something simpler than that?’

“Shut up!”

‘Could that be what you are driving towards?”

“Who are you talking to, Xion?” Rei he called himself. Strange name for a little boy. Fair skin and hair. Even his eyelashes were translucent. His look was unique. He reminded Xion of someone he once knew.

Xion chewed at the inside of his cheek until he felt it snag, tasting a rust. He squeezed his hand lightly. The other children thus far were fast asleep. Rei was the only one awake. He wasn’t quite sober. Sleep was catching up to him, as he meandered to his floor mat.

Time flowed like cement. The orphanage was full of kids but felt emptier than a crypt. He checked the clock for the time. A minute had passed since he last checked an hour ago, or so it seemed. Sitting there with nothing to stare at but a wall with chipped cream paint, and a snore-filled ambiance was excruciatingly dull and there was no telling when the sun would rise. It was so pointless too. None of them were complaining tonight, so what was the issue? He began to drift into an unpleasant daydream or was it a paranoid fantasy? So hard to tell and he didn't care. It helped to pass the time and he wasn't one for entertaining himself with optimism. Better to be prepared to leave and get paid. 

Rei stared at Xion. “Do you hear anything yet, Xion?”

Xion sat up from his slouch. “What?” Then from the silence came noises no living thing could ever make. It perhaps was once alive but rendered into a spirit that contorted with pain, anger, hatred. At first it was nothing but a deeper moaning to the caustic summer air that swept over the night. The sound wound itself around their ears and began to change, like a terrible lullaby. Then from that background of sound that ebbed and flowed just like wind in the deep canopy came words. Xion froze, straining to listen against the ceaseless wind and thrashing leaves. It was no language he could speak only recognized, but it hissed as it spoke…

Xion stood up cautiously. Not wanting to wake the children, and have an even bigger panic. He went for the doorframe. The voice sounded like it was outside, right on the otherside of the bedroom wall.

“Are you gonna go get the monster?” Rei blinked owlishly, a hushed tone.

Xion steeled himself, clutching his ninja pouch. “Looks like--I am.”

And just when he was hoping the night would be totally unremarkable. Not this again. Not here. Why here? Why now? If this force was here, out in the open, it was time to put an end to this little game.

When he got outside he went straight to the back of the orphanage to greet the mysterious force that had been following him around. He wanted to meet this entity face to face. What he was met with was a woman. Fair-skinned, dark haired. A dress that billowed effortlessly in the mild wind. 

Xion drew a Kunai, honing momentum. 

The ghost moved its head this way and that, eyes taking in his form as if he were the strange one. Then she spoke with strange words, beautiful, like ancient cuneiform runes made audible. With one wave of her hand the air filled with the sound of wooden wind-chimes. Then time stood still as she observed, hair and clothing now utterly still despite the wind. Then she was gone, as were the sounds, leaving him only with the movement of the leaves above.

Then silence. Then harsh, abrupt--darkness.


‘--STOP--’

“Who are you?!”

'You and I are not done. You can be so forgetful, this I know. You cannot rid yourself of me, Xion. We I have sailed a billion worlds. Consumed whole stars. Looked into the abyss, only for it to stare back. You must realize, at this point, I am no mere voice. I am the personification of the finality men spend their entire lives in the shadow of and they cannot stop it. Only delay it. I am the devourer of life. The [darkness], that comes for the [darkness]. I turn what is, into what was.--

--Know this, before there was time, before there was anything, there was nothing. Before there was nothing there was the abyss. In the abyss: Monsters. Final damnation. End.--

--So what will you do now, old friend? Now that we are united for the rest of your life? Don’t you understand? Through killing, feeding on desire, we’ve forged an age old bond between my kind and yours. Symbiotic. Existence which borne entropy. Remember.--'

“No. I remember everything about the day I was born. I--still bear the scars. My friends in the Leaf are my family now. And I am theirs. I once  fought to keep my beautiful home safe, and then that witch came claiming to be Queen...Xion Akui bows to know one.”

'Oh? Something left to say?'

“Yes. I want your name. You and I know how this ends. We've known since we first spoke. The Daemons have played their part.This… Was all part of the plan. The Wolves.”

‘...’

“Your name.”

.... You don’t know?--While the mortal world doubts and questions, I know exactly who you and I we are. We are the ceaseless wheel, the last scholar of entropy. We are--

-- [the doom]--.


And then he was back there. Giant’s Scar. The day his home was turned to ash and dark embers, and the woman in the jet dress towered over his then boyish-frame. In that instant he relieved all the emotion and fear. Doubt and anxiety. Just seeing this, remembering this makes the most beautiful of memories the worst, cutting his insides as if they were shards of glass. This wen was once his refuge, a place of guaranteed warmth even on the coldest of desert nights. Just being here fills him with a sadness he is now realizing he will never fully shake, with every second it seals it deeper into his bones.

She moved as she spoke. Cosmo petals trailed behind the spirit. She now looked effortless, towering over Xion who was burdened with emotion.  “Feel the void, burgeoning to your breast. Take that [desire], and transform it into reality.”

Then he was outside again, and everything was once again animated. As if reality itself was held captive just for that moment. 

He sunk to the grass and pulled his knees up to his chest. Wrapping his arms around his shins; if he could just curl up into a ball, he wouldn't have to face real life, he’d be protected from everything around him. But he'd still have to live with himself, with the wretched memories swirling around in his head. His eyes, already searing with sadness and rage squeezed shut to push more tears out. He let his head fall down to his knees, and he pulled his legs closer to himself.

No matter what he did, there was no where he could hide from the thoughts in his head.

“The dark.” He said ghostly. Repeatedly, in a trance. Possibly loud enough to be heard by the children inside.

He slowly makes his way back inside. Despite everything that had happened, everyone but Rei seemed to be fast asleep.  He had a slight grin, and his eyes fought to stay open. Xion went back to his slouch on the wall. And the little boy came and sat next to him. Soon they were both asleep. He had many dreams that night.  He had seen darkness before, the kind that makes a street like an old fashioned photograph, everything a shade of grey. Or the darkness that robs one of their best sense and replaces it with a paralyzing fear. In this darkness he sat, muscles cramped and unable to move. He only knew his eyes were still there because he could feel himself blink, still instinctively moisturizing the organs he have no current use for. He couldn't hear anything either. 

As a child, he used to wake in the night and wish for the sun. He dreamt of being there. Back then. The darkness worried him, his imagination supplied many beasts with fantastical jaws to lurk beyond the range of his vision. But now he embraced it. The night provides cover from the flesh and blood monsters of the day, the ones with their blades and Wolf paraphernalia, the ones who can be judge, jury and executioner in the name of conquest. Even on the most moonlit of nights, he and the rest of the “scared kids” could blend into the city shadows, staying clear of those pools of yellow light that flow from seeking flames. The only reason to venture out at night is to join the game, the game where everyone looses and the only prize is knowing that one fought.
WC: 2225


[Mission Complete!]


____

Reality is the finest flesh, O'reader mine.
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