forum From Dark to Light, From Madness to Sanity (1-1, Closed, Mature)
Started by @Serpentess health_and_safety language

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@Serpentess health_and_safety language

(This would be rp #7, I think, lol)
(It definitely will be)

Phalakros crouched, looking down the steep cliff to the water below. He was on the edge of a barren plateau overlooking a vast ocean. The near silence of the land was as soothing as the sight before him.

Shifting rocks moved behind him and Phalakros whipped around, eyes searching the land. Nothing. Nothing? Not again.

Phalakros stood up straight, looking around more thoroughly. Still nothing. Why? Why did they do this to him? Why did those things still haunt him?

An overwhelming sensation came over him, like a great pressure in the back of his head. He knew it well, felt it every time he was in Lucitius’ presence. Something was coming, something powerful. Something dangerous.

Phalakros whimpered, quickly morphing into a great cormorant and flying a short way down the cliff, hiding in a crevice. The sensation only grew, but he couldn’t tell from where. Phalakros hoped it would go away, that it wouldn’t seek him out. He just wanted to be left in peace.

@emilyevewrites group

(Seven rps but who's counting… 😅)


Farah Dowling clapped her hand over her mouth and looked anywhere but down. Daredevil, life-threatening activities were Saul's forté, not hers. Scaling cliffs was death-defying, and she had not once had any interest in doing it. Yet here she was, scrambling for her life on the edge of a cliff in the middle of gods-knew-where. And to make things worse, her foot had just slipped, sending a shock of panic through her entire body and causing a small collection of stones to fall far beneath her.

Her fingers tingled with both adrenaline and the urge to use her magic. But she wouldn't use it – not yet, at least. The situation was not yet dire enough to call upon her magic to save her. Besides, if she did survive the ordeal, she could brag about it to Saul later. In the meantime… Farah just had to try not to die.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

(Lmao! Not me, glancing around, feigning innocence)

The sensation still lingered, but it had stopped moving. Phalakros took a deep breath and peeked out of his crevice. No one was looking down on him. But, the pressure seemed to get even heavier, like something was watching him from behind.

Phalakros jerked his head around to look down, and there she was, not far below him. The source of the terrifying sensation. A woman that couldn’t possibly be human despite her appearance. No pure human could hold so much power. Not even a strangeling human could!

Phalakros took another deep breath, trying to keep himself from getting so frightened that he couldn’t move, or worse. That’s when he realized that this woman, or rather, seeming woman, was in trouble. She was clearly not experienced with climbing mountains, and her foot had slipped.

The rocks! That’s what he heard! It had been her foot!

Phalakros, now knowing with certainty that he wasn’t hallucinating at the moment, tried to figure out how he could help the poor woman. He was tempted of going back on top of the cliff and morphing, but he wasn’t sure how the woman would react. He also didn’t want to startle her by a direct honk her way. So, instead, he decided to, in a way, sing.

He just wanted to get her attention, and to see how he could help her. And, then, he could figure out if she was trustworthy enough to linger with, or if he would have to get away as quickly as possible.

(Here’s a video I found for reference to what a great cormorant sounds like)

@emilyevewrites group

Farah slowly lowered her hand from her mouth and tried to regain control of her breathing. Her heart was still racing, and the shock of nearly slipping was making her dizzy with fear. All things that were not ideal for a fairy whose power and control was based on her emotional state. She had to calm herself – now – before she lost control. Because gods knew what would happen then.

Slowly, she began to inch her way in the direction she had been going again only to abruptly stop as she heard something above her. Farah refused to crane her neck and look for fear that she would lose her balance for good and topple over the cliff's edge. So she settled for listening.

Eventually, her breathing and heart rate returned to normal – or as normal as she could get them while still clinging to the side of a cliff for survival – and she tilted her head back slightly. Still, she couldn't see anything.

"Stars," she hissed, refusing to either close her eyes or look down.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

The woman seemed to calm and started moving again, then froze as he started singing. He immediately stopped, worried that he had startled her. But, he quickly realized that she was listening to him. Then, she looked up slightly, but not enough. She wasn’t brave enough to do so.

With a wary chirp, Phalakros moved forward a bit, until he was perched on the edge of the little crevice. He then softly honked at her, again trying to catch her attention without scaring her.

The sensation in his head was slowly turning into a headache because of his proximity to her. With Lucitius, Phalakros didn’t often get headaches, likely because he was used to Lucitius, and trusted him completely. However, with this strange woman, Phalakros had a feeling that this headache would be harsh once it peaked. He wasn’t looking forward to that, but it was better than leaving her to die.

@emilyevewrites group

Farah’s eyes widened at the bird above her as it peaked its head out and looked down at her. She was certainly not expecting it to be so… docile.

She glanced down, only for a second, and sucked in a panicked breath. Stupid! she reprimanded herself. Don’t look down.

Her eyes lifted again to try and glimpse the bird, and it honked at her. She blinked, a bit startled but not enough to be frightened. “Um, hello?” she responded, her confusion laced with her accent. Maybe she was starting to go mad. Talking to birds… Farah shook her head slightly.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

Phalakros chirped at her when she finally saw him, then straightened in alarm as she looked down and nearly panicked. When she looked up again and spoke, he honked back.

Though, her accent caught his attention. Was she… British? A British human-like female? What was she? Who was she? And why, by the skies, was she here?

Phalakros pushed those thoughts aside, then nodded upward, to the top of the cliff. He honked again, trying to ask if she needed to get to the top, and if he could help.

He then realized how odd his actions seemed. He, currently a bird, was trying to talk to a female human creature. She probably was wondering which one of them was crazy. And, if Phalakros had to answer that, he might say himself. He wasn’t exactly sane anyway, given that he was haunted by hallucinations. He was just hoping that this wasn’t an elaborate trick by those little demonic serpents. They were notorious for that.

@emilyevewrites group

Farah could have sworn it was her imagination the first time the bird honked at her. But when it did it a second time… She frowned, trying to figure out how a bird could understand her. Maybe it was some kind of light magic, orienting itself to make her see things. Or maybe a shapeshifter. She'd read of them, sure, but had she ever expected them to exist? Maybe they were common here. Granted, she had no idea where she was.

And then the memories came pouring back. The Burned Ones. Bloom. The Dragon Flame. Its power. The graveyard. Rosalind. As Farah tilted her head up again to look at the bird, her neck blazed with pain. She winced and cried out, reaching up to grip the back of her neck. Gods it hurt. What had Rosalind done to her?

But she had managed to get a good look at the bird as it had nodded upward. The top of the cliff? Yes, she supposed that would be the best option. Farah tried to tilt her head to the side slightly and again was only met with pain. She hissed between her teeth. "If you can understand me, yes, I need help," she spoke aloud to the bird. I've got to be going insane.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

Phalakros watched the woman for a moment, alarmed by her sudden cry of pain. She then finally answered him. She needed his help. And, he wouldn’t abandon someone in need.

Phalakros nodded, then looked around, trying to find a place nearby where he could morph without plummeting a long way down. Unfortunately, there wasn’t any spots, which meant he’d have to fly to the top of the cliff and climb back down.

With a little sigh, Phalakros did just that, flying to the top, morphing, and maneuvering onto the side of the cliff. The height didn’t scare him, in fact, he quite liked heights. It was falling that scared him. He hated that sensation, particularly because it was similar to what it felt like when… it came out. It had only escaped once or twice, but the feeling of it was unforgettable…

Phalakros took a deep breath, quickly pushing those memories away. He needed to focus, or he would fall.

A few moments passed, and Phalakros had climbed down until he was nearly next to her. Then, he held out his hand for her.

“Hold on to me. We will climb together,”he said, his voice accented by a lisping, gutteral tone.

@emilyevewrites group

Farah wished she could actually look up at the bird and see what it looked like. Instead, she heard the sound of its wings flapping as it took off. She hissed with frustration, but the sound was lost over the crashing of a wave against the cliffside beneath her.

"I really thought a bird would help me, and it just flew off. Brilliant," she muttered, beginning to inch her way across the ledge she was currently trapped on. She had made a bit of progress after a few moments, but it was minuscule. Her thoughts began to turn morbid. This is just lovely. I survive Rosalind only to die on the cliffs of… gods know where.

Then Farah froze as she heard the sounds of something descending down the cliffside from above her. She closed her eyes briefly, but when she looked over, amidst a searing pain in her neck, there was a man extending his hand and speaking to her.

Her eyes widened and studied him. A hundred questions filled her mind, but she ignored them all for now. It was certainly not the right time to be questioning this man, who was offering to help her.

Having no other option but to accept, Farah wordlessly reached for his hand and took it.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

Phalakros waited shyly, not meeting her eyes as she inspected him. The ache in his head was becoming unbearable. When she grabbed his hand, he curled his fingers around her, making sure to avoid accidentally scratching her with his claws, holding her hand with a gentle but firm grip.

“Take your time. ‘Tis not far to the top. I also am strong enough to hold you if you…”he said gently, not willing to finish his sentence. Thinking about slipping or falling was too much for him.

Phalakros then carefully moved upward, not far, but enough to hopefully encourage the woman to move. He didn’t want to linger too long on the side of the cliff, or he would risk his thoughts going down a very dark and terrifying route.

@emilyevewrites group

Farah gasped quietly at the way he grasped onto her hand. It was more like he was cradling it than holding it, and it again caused her to study his face. She was trying to figure out why exactly he was aiding her. Unless he had heard her speaking to the bird. Then he would likely think her to be insane.

Her expression set determinedly at his words. "I will not fall," she said, the firmness of her gaze daring him to challenge her. Still, she was praying to any gods who would listen that she would survive.

She held her breath as she mimicked the path he was traveling, holding tight to his hand as she made her way up the cliffside. The wind from the ocean below them drifted up and filled her nose with the scent of the sea. It had been a long while since she'd been anywhere near the coast.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

(So, it’s the ocean below the cliff instead of a jungle, lol? I’m just double-checking)

Phalakros became even more bashful when she inspected him again. He wasn’t used to being around someone he didn’t know, nor was he used to that someone looking at him so closely. He was used to Lucitius, to Synthia, their children, their allies. No one else.

He nodded quickly at her words, not wanting any conflict. He wasn’t good with conflict. In fact, he ran from it. And, if he couldn’t run, then… something far more terrifying happened. He wanted to avoid that possibility at all costs.

After she moved, Phalakros climbed higher. He was taking turns with her, so that neither was rushing the other, and so that they made steady progress. He continued fighting his fears the entire way, instead focusing on their entwined hands.

It was soothing to him, holding hands with someone. Though, hugs were far more soothing. But, it was strange to be holding someone else’s hand, someone he didn’t know. It confused him, because he wanted the soothing touch, but he also wanted to avoid it. He couldn’t figure out what to do.

@emilyevewrites group

(Oof, yes. Sorry lol. I just updated the location page)

Farah continued to follow his lead as she climbed. She felt more secure scaling the cliffs with another person rather than by herself. Every time she moved to turn her neck, however, she winced with pain. Gods, it hurt.

But thanks to her magic, she could feel his fear pulsing outward despite his relatively calm exterior. It was nothing Farah hadn't seen before or even experienced herself. Feeling outrageous amounts of fear while maintaining a stoic composure. She had more than enough practice with the concept.

Soon, she thought she could see the top coming into sight and getting closer and closer with every inch she made up the cliffside with this stranger. She didn't even know his name. It was one of the many questions she was thinking over at they made their way higher, away from the ocean beneath them. By the gods, they were nearly there now.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

(You’re fine, lol)

A few minutes passed and they finally made the top of the cliff. Phalakros climbed up first, then helped the woman up. He then stood and backed away from her, one of his hands unconsciously fiddling with a feather in his hair.

“Are… are you well? I saw that your neck was hurting you earlier. I, unfortunately, do not know any healing spells, yet… I wish to make sure you are alright,”he asked shyly, barely looking at her.

Phalakros kept looking at the ground, but he repeatedly glanced up at her, waiting for her answer. He also kept fidgeting and shifting, indecisiveness taunting him. The ache in his head was nagging at him, but he still didn’t know if this woman was a threat or not. He also didn’t know where he was, and was hoping she did.

@emilyevewrites group

Farah sighed with relief as the stranger pulled her up and she set her feet on solid ground again. But she noticed the way he quickly backed away from her and played with the feather in his hair – what she assumed was a nervous habit. Did he know who she was? No, how could he? She had never seen this man before.

She subconsciously reached up and touched the back of her neck. The fairy closed her eyes, gritted her teeth, and hissed in pain. "No, I'm not alright," she muttered, trying again to remember the blurry memories of how she'd gotten here and why her neck hurt as badly as it did.

The Burned Ones. Bloom. The Dragon Flame. Its power. The graveyard. Rosalind.

Farah gasped, and her eyes flew open. She blinked quickly and remembered the man in front of her. "Sorry, I didn't mean to be so curt," she apologized. "I'm still trying to figure out how I-"

The fairy stopped her sentence short as she tilted her head a bit to the side to take inventory of the land around them. Her eyes instantly began to tear up, and she brought her hands to her mouth. A muffled statement that sounds like "Oh my gods" could be heard. But the landscape before them was plain. There was nothing but hills and a shallow valley to be seen from where Farah and the stranger stood. She hadn't even asked him his name. She was too taken aback by the memories and events that happened at this horrid place sixteen years ago.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

Her words concerned him, despite her tone. Why did her neck hurt her? Was she wounded? Ill? Something else? Could he help her?

Phalakros took a deep breath to calm himself, then shook his head.

“No need to apologize. I…”he paused at her expression.

Phalakros noticed the tears in her eyes, and looked around worriedly. He couldn’t see any significance in the land around him. He’d never been here before. His keen ears then overheard her small gasp, causing him to turn back to her with even more concern.

Though, he didn’t know how to comfort her, what to do. He had absolutely no knowledge about this woman or this land, and it bothered him immensely. He was stuck. Stuck in a strange land with a strange, and powerful, woman. And, he didn’t know how to help, or how to get home.

With a soft whimper, Phalakros sat down on the ground, curling up and swaying. He continued to mess with the feather in his hair, but it wasn’t helping him much.

@emilyevewrites group

(So… welcome to Farah's more traumatic adult side… ;))

Farah looked over at the sudden movement and gritted her teeth together fiercely to accommodate the pain. It had only been the stranger sitting down. She breathed in slowly, trying to keep herself from shaking as she knelt down on the ground in front of him. "I'm sorry," she murmured, trying to ease kindness into her voice. "I didn't mean to frighten you. Are you alright?"

Still, the fairy's brown eyes darted warily over to the empty land beside them. She hadn't been to this place since… No. She couldn't think about that now. The haunting memories still threatened to break her, if she wasn't careful. And since her days at Alfea, Farah rarely let down her guard. Except…

"So… all we… talk about… is you."

Farah couldn't contain the sharp gasp that escaped her at the memory of the voice inside her head. It took over so suddenly. Everything else was white noise. How long had it been since she heard that voice before that fateful moment in the graveyard? Sixteen years. Farah would've preferred to have kept the streak going.

And by the gods, her neck was still aching terribly. She was still trying to piece together why. Farah could feel her memories beginning to become clearer, but for some reason, the one running through her head now was choppy. The voice kept cutting in and out.

"…you… a sabbatical."

Her head began to pound with pain. It was like Farah was underwater. The words bounced around in her mind, and it was like she couldn't breathe, though she was actually hyperventilating. She was trapped in her own mind, hearing the words as if they were being spoken in the present moment.

"Head… mountains… a break."

Before Farah knew what she was doing, she closed her eyes. It left her weak and vulnerable to the stranger in front of her, if he wanted to attack her. But she couldn't bear it. The voice of her living ghost in her head with the reminder of her misplaced loyalty just mere feet away from where she now stood… it was too much.

"…worked… hard… Farah."

The fairy winced, crying out as the pain from her neck and her head became too much, unbearably so. The white noise receded, leaving the sounds of the ocean and her own clipped breathing in its place. No more memories. At least not for now.

She begged the gods to lose consciousness, but no such gift was granted to her. Farah Dowling was very much awake, alive, and in both physical and mental pain. Tears formed behind her eyelids. When was the last time she had cried? When Bloom confronted her in her headmistress's office, Farah had been close then. But now, there was no holding it back. Her heart ached.

She missed Saul – she wanted to see him again, even if it was only for a moment. Farah wanted to tell him how she truly felt about him, and just maybe, he might feel the same for her. Even if he didn't, she still wanted to tell him.

She missed Bloom – as irritating as the girl had been at one time or another, Farah had found herself growing close to her. The hug they had shared might just have been the last one Farah would ever feel.

She missed Alfea – the campus, the sights, the smells. Her office. By the gods, it was probably a stupid thing to miss a room, but Farah still missed it anyway. It had once been a terrifying place, but she had made it into her own.

And suddenly, Farah remembered the stranger in front of her. Her eyes flew open in a panic, and she tried to calm her breathing. She studied his face intently before steeling herself as best she could. "Your name?" she asked faintly, still trying to ground herself. "What is your name?"

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

(Oof. And, this… is poor, dear Phalakros)

Phalakros watched her warily, the pounding in his head making him wince. He appreciated her kindness, but it didn’t help much.

“I… I am lost. I know not where I am, what to do. I…”he said, trailing off with another soft whimper.

He then continued to watch her, sensing that something was wrong. The blank, horrified look was like a mirror of himself, and Phalakros quickly turned away, rocking back and forth as his body started shaking.

He heard her hyperventilating and it seemed to make his head hurt worse. Curling into a tighter ball, Phalakros whined, trying to ignore the pain and the terrifying mirror next to him. It wasn’t working.

He yelped when she cried out, begging in his native tongue for her to stop, for the pain to go away, for everything to leave him alone. He then hid his face completely, shaking horribly, and crying desperate maroon tears.

It didn’t register to him that the woman was asking him something. He didn’t even realize that she was aware of him again. However, he did hear distant hissing, a sound he had hoped he would escape. It wasn’t real, he knew that. But, they were real to him. Very real.

@emilyevewrites group

Farah tried to remember what he'd been saying to her before the white noise took over. Lost, he'd said. He had no idea where he was. Well, she knew exactly where they were.

Then she heard his speech change into something she had never heard before. A new kind of language, and she had no idea what he was saying to her, or at all for that matter. Her eyes took in his hidden face, his trembling shoulders, and his body tightly curled in on itself. Forget about your own selfish plight, she told herself (though her own struggles were truly anything but selfish). Help him!

Gently, she reached toward him and placed her hand on his arm. Her eyes glowed silver-blue, and she began to channel her magic and transfer calming emotions to him through their touch. The touch wasn't necessary, but it was easier for channeling. "It's alright," Farah murmured gently.

@Serpentess health_and_safety language

Phalakros jerked away with a yelp when she touched him. Her words made him pause though. Was she trying to comfort him? What was she doing?

He then noticed her eyes. They were brown before. Now they were silver-blue. How? Why?

“You know this place. What is it? Where is it? I… I lost mine way. I know not how to get back. I… I am not sure I can get back,”he asked.

He wanted to know who she was, what she was, but first things first. He needed to find a way back home.

@emilyevewrites group

Farah quickly pulled her hand back as if she'd been burned. It was his yelp that had startled her. "I'm sorry," she apologized quickly as her eyes turned back to brown. "I was only trying to help. The touch was to transfer calm feelings into you. But I won't if you don't want me to. I should have asked you first. I'm truly sorry."

The curious gaze he'd had when looking at her eyes told her enough of what she needed to know. He'd never seen anyone with magic like hers before. Or at least someone with changing eye colors when their magic was called upon.

But his question made her stiffen. "I do," Farah answered quietly. "This is the former civilization of Aster Dell." Her eyes tracked to the inlaid valley again, but nothing was there to see. At least, not until Farah's eyes changed colors again and she released a small bout of electricity at the place. Before it could hit anything solid, the lightning struck something in the middle of the air, and the illusion barrier that was in place faded away. What remained was exactly what Farah had described: a former civilization. All the buildings were at least somewhat destroyed, crumpling to the dirt ground that they sat on.

Farah tore her eyes away from the sight. "We're in Solaria, in the Otherworld," she continued quietly. Her voice suddenly sounded tight as the memories threatened yet again to overwhelm her. But she frowned at his words and studied his face. "What do you mean?" she asked quietly. "Where are you from? And how did you get here?"