forum The Midnight Carnival (open) (oxo)
Started by @Emmrii

people_alt 60 followers


I know it can be overused, but I’ve always loved tropes that include a dark carnival, so I’m gonna attempt this. Be sure to read the description below! ;)

You’ve always imagined the carnival as a magical place for people of all ages, but little did you know that something dark— something evil— lurks within the circus tent.

You are a young man, living in the year 1940. With the consequences of WWII hanging heavily on everyone’s backs, people long to forget their suffering. So, many of them head to the new traveling carnival that has emerged in the center of their little town. The main attraction, with its bright lights and astounding acts, is the circus. While tickets to this circus normally sell out rather quickly, the people who do manage to get into the massive circus tent are treated with a performance they will never forget. There are clowns, acrobats, and animals galore along with a mysterious woman who often looms near the shadows. She is the circus master, and she vanishes after the performances come to a conclusion.

You’ve always wanted to experience the magic of the circus for yourself, but every time you try to attend, tickets are sold out before you arrive. However, one day, you manage to get ahold of one, and you finally are able to attend the circus on a late August night. It is just as magical as you imagined it to be, but it isn’t long into the performance when you start to realize something is wrong.

People are starting to disappear. One by one.


  • I do not want this rp to die out as soon as we start, so no one liners. I would also like good grammar. :))

  • While I do tend to write with some darker themes, I like to keep the romance in my rps at a PG level. I’m totally fine with kissing and hugging, but I stay away from any sexual themes.

  • I do reserve the right to say no. Please don’t get offended! You’re all amazing writers on here, but some writing styles work better with mine than others.

  • While I totally get that we’re all pretty busy, I would like someone who can be active at least once every 1-3 days.

  • If I have never rped with you before, I may either check other rps or ask for a writing sample.

Background (Optional):


Name: Andromeda Archer
Age: 24
Gender: Female
Personality: Andromeda is a very charismatic person; she had many friends as she is quite charming, and she can often come off as very flirtatious when among the opposite sex. She remains very optimistic most of the time, and she’s whimsical and enchanting. However, some also know that Andromeda has another side. A side that is much more dark and troubled.
Looks: A fairly tall girl (5’9”; 137 lbs); part Chinese, with one parent being Caucasian and the other one from Chinese descent; she has dark brown hair streaked lightly with a caramel color, and she normally keeps her hair, which goes down to around the middle of her chest, in loose curls; she has a somewhat round face and a petite nose with honey colored eyes and long, thick eyes lashes; she normally wears a little bit of makeup from day to day— eyeliner, mascara, and blush— but normally only wears a lot of it on special occasions; as for body type, she’s very tall and skinny, likely with light muscle. (Hair reference: ; eye reference: ) Being the expressive circus master she is, she tends to wear very bright clothing, often decorated with flowers and jewelry.
Extra: She is a circus master at the Midnight Parade Carnival.

@Becfromthedead group

Name: Declan Prior
Age: 22
Gender: Cis man, he/him
Personality: Generally clever, but absent-minded at times; he often seems like his mind is a thousand miles away. Easily flustered, generally very soft and gentle with other people. A hard worker, always wanting to help pick up the slack for others.
Appearance: Fair skin, medium brown wavy hair with reddish undertones, usually cut fairly short and a little tousled, some stubble on his face, gold wire-rimmed glasses, pale blue eyes. He stands at about 5'11, and has a slightly heavier than average build, sitting just under 200 lbs. He wears suits to work most of the time, usually opting for dark blues when he can. For less formal wear, he usually wears a vest over a button-up.
Other: He comes from a family of Irish immigrants; he was born there but doesn't remember much due to being so young. Currently, he works as a journalist and is trying to get a story on this carnival. No one has written one yet, and he's determined to be the first, even though it's been nearly impossible to get in.


Traveling carnivals had started to grow in prevalence in the late 19th century, and by 1940, they were rather popular in America. They brought with them a sense a mystery and enchantment that intrigued audience, and they often offered a colorful escape from the mundane life. However, for a rare few, these carnivals offered something… more. Something more dark. Something more sinister than the bright colors of the circus tent would lead one to believe. This was something Andromeda understood all to well.

It was a late August night when her traveling carnival, the Midnight Parade, came into town. That day had excellent weather— the best the East coast had seen in years— but the appearance of the Midnight Parade seemed to carry a dark cloud over it as it moved into the town. It was simply a foreshadowing of things to come.

It was late at night when the group reached the fair grounds, and they immediately began to set up for the next day’s activities. People roamed throughout the trailers, exhaustion showing on their faces as they began to unpack the supplies. However, there was one person who was not there among the workers: Andromeda. She had helped with the set up in almost every town, but tonight was different. She didn’t know why, but on that night, she decided to take up the task of going around the town with flyers promoting the carnival. This sort of assignment could be dangerous; after all, many sketchy men lurked around the town at night. However, Andromeda insisted on going alone. She needed a break from her circus life, no matter how short that break was. She needed to have time to clear her head.

So, Andromeda went throughout the town alone, nailing up flyers wherever she could. During most of her walk, she didn’t see many people out; after all, it was late, and most families had gone to bed hours ago. But, as Andromeda got closer to the center of the town, she began to see more and more people walking through the streets in a drunken stupor. It wasn’t long before she figured out why.

There, in a more rundown part of the town, was a small tavern. At first, Andromeda was going to pass by without a single thought, but as she got closer, she could feel a strange sort of desire growing in her chest. It had been years since she had been in a bar. She used to go into them all the time, and she could easily make friends with her charismatic personality. But, ever since she’d joined the circus, she tried to avoid these places, avoid the old life she had left behind. But now, as she passed by the crowded bar, she could once against feel a desire to go inside. This time, she didn’t ignore it.

Andromeda walked into the building and sat down at the bar, ignoring the drunken ramblings of the men around her. She knew her circus crew would likely start searching for her soon, but for a moment, she allowed herself to relax. She allowed herself to be free from the torment in her mind.

@Becfromthedead group

Inside of that tavern, among the drunken masses was a young man by the name of Declan Prior. He was in the process of writing a story for one of the local papers, of course in his method of "write drunk, edit sober."
Declan was having trouble at work lately. It seemed everyone else got to the big stories before he could. Everything else he wrote seemed to be about the war, politics, tragedy- it was an entire shitshow, and he had to present that to readers over anything else. On occasion, though, his publisher would let him send something a bit more lighthearted to the paper, and he knew that these were what set him in particular apart from some of his competitors. Spectacle and innovation were such a wonderful basis for flowery words and description, and heavens knew they needed the morale in times like these.
Declan was sipping at an old fashioned when Andromeda came in. He wasn't doing much to break the stereotype of drinking whiskey as an Irishman, but so what? It got the job done, and he was never one for clear liquors or beer. He saw Andromeda enter. As she was one of very few women in the tavern, she caught his eye. Yet, he didn't let his gaze linger for too long. He got back to work, scrawling words onto the page. However, hit with a sudden wave of dissatisfaction, he ripped the page from his notebook, crumpled it, and tossed it to the other end of the table.


Even though there were plenty of dashing young men gathered in the tavern, Declan was the only one that seemed to catch Andromeda’s attention. It was strange. There was nothing too intriguing about this man; to her, he looked just like every single other person in the bar. However, there was something about him that made her curious. After all, everyone else in the tavern was drinking, chatting, having a good time, while he was sitting there alone. Writing.

Andromeda stood up from her spot at the bar before she wandered over to the table the man was at. She sat down across from him and picked up the crumpled piece of notebook paper.

“Hm. How curious.” She leaned forward against the table, raising an eyebrow. “You know, most people don’t come to a bar when they want to write. There are libraries for that.”

@Becfromthedead group

Declan leaned his head back. He was drunk, not unlike the others. Declan was very pale, and the blood in his face rose to the surface, leaving a tinge of pink in his cheeks and ears. He took notice of Andromeda striding in his direction, but didn't think much of it until she sat in front of him. He looked up from his new blank page as she spoke.
"Well, you see, Miss, the library closed three hours ago, and they won't let me drink there, anyhow," Declan replied jokingly, "I told 'em that Hemingway put out some good work while drunk, but one of the ladies at the desk confiscated my scotch. Doubtless, she's off drinking it instead."
He closed his notebook.
"Well, then, what's a lady like you doin' at a place like this? As you can see, not many women. The rest of 'em are all locals. They're here every week gettin' wasted, finding men to take them home. Which is all good and well, but I don't think that's what you came here for, is it?"
Liquid courage, they called it. Declan usually didn't have the guts to speak to women, even if he wasn't flirting. And he wasn't flirting now, either. He just wanted to be good company, despite all his work.


“Mm… well, regardless, it seems to be awfully strange to be writing in a bar alone.” She let out a small laugh. “But, of course, I’ve seen stranger, so if getting drunk helps you write…”

She leaned her chin against her knuckles, watching him for a few moments. This man was peculiar. There was no doubt about that. But, even so, Andromeda tended to like people who were more on the strange side. She was in a circus, after all, and she wasn’t she biggest fan of mundane and boring.

“Well, I’m new to town. I saw this tavern, and I decided it might be nice to stop by,” she said. “I was originally planning to keep to myself, but I can’t help it that someone caught my eye.”

She winked at him before she began to mess with the flyers tucked away in her satchel. She knew she should head back soon, but she wanted to stay for just a little bit longer.

@Becfromthedead group

"Oh, it's not like I do this every time, but y'know how alcohol lowers inhibition? Sometimes it helps the words flow through me like water," Declan explained, "And the library bit was a joke, by the way."
Declan listened to Andromeda a bit longer.
"This old dump? I suppose it has its charms, huh? Wait- caught your eye- you mean me?"
Declan was a lot drunker than he meant to be at this point, so he had even more difficulty telling her intent than usual. He saw her rummaging around in her bag and almost asked about it, but he didn't wish to be rude.
"Are you here to drink, then, or just takin' in the atmosphere?"


“Yes, you.” She laughed softly, supping her drink. “You seem… interesting. Or at least more interesting than half the other men here.”

She noticed that the bar was starting to get a little bit more rowdy. A new group had come inside, and they were starting to get aggressive with a bad tender at the counter. However, despite how annoying it was, Andromeda tried to ignore it as she continued to chat with Declan.

“A little bit of both, I suppose. Drinks help clear your mind, and the atmosphere, well…” She stole a glance around. “It offers a sort of escape.”

He probably would look at her like she was mad, but it was true. The bar served as a place to hide from her life. A life that was bright, colorful, and unique, but still held very dark secrets.

@Becfromthedead group

"Oh, well, I suppose most of them are businessmen who come here to unwind and stay away from their wives. Young men who drink to forget their worries, war vets who have nothing left to do… And yet, I'm none of those."
He swirled his drink a bit before taking another sip.
"The people-watching in places like this is one of a kind. I always say that a sober man knows how to hide his true nature, but drunk men… they bare it all."
Declan looked at Andromeda up and down, taking in her features. Yet, he just as soon looked away, trying not to come off as a creep. He wasn't. He was just curious about the stranger.
"I don't believe I caught your name, miss."


She leaned her cheek into her palm, scanning the face of this stranger. She would never say it out loud, but he was rather handsome in comparison to the other men in the bar.

“Oh? Then who are you then? What’s your identity?” she questioned. “You look like you would be a writer. A journalist, perhaps, who came to the tavern for inspiration.”

Andromeda glanced down at his notebook, wondering what kind of events he had written about in the past. From what she’d seen of the town, there didn’t seem like there would be much to write about, but Andromeda knew that would change soon. The circus— her circus— would change everything.

“Ahh, yes. Drunk men. I’m afraid I’m not into the idea of getting drunk. I have too many secrets to keep.” She laughed softly and winked at him. “But it’s interesting to hear what people say when intoxicated. To hear their hidden thoughts.”

Andromeda noticed him looking her up and down, and her lips went into a slight smirk. “And my name is Andromeda,” she said. “Andromeda Archer.”

@Becfromthedead group

"Oh, inspiration would give it too much credit. It's a change of scenery more so than anything. You see, I'm a journalist. Declan Prior's the name. If you've read the local papers, you might've seen me on some of the articles. Anyway, I'm out here looking for somethin' a bit different. Morale's low, war stories are bloody depressing. People are sick of half the stories we're puttin' out there. But findin' what I want to write about's got me in a bit of a bind," Declan replied.
He took a slow breath when he caught the other's name finally.
"Quite the regal name you have there. Named after a princess. Me? I'm named after my great uncle. Fierce alcoholic, the poor bastard."


“Hm. Well, Declan, I may have a story for you. I’ve heard there’s a traveling carnival coming to town. The first one that’s come here in years,” she said. “I saw them setting up on a field near Denver Road. They call themselves the Midnight Parade.”

Andromeda wasn’t sure that was quite the exciting story Declan was looking for, but it soon would be. After everything went down, Andromeda was sure that her carnival would be the talk of the town. Everyone for near and far would gather to come to it, and Andromeda would give them the greatest performance they’d ever seen. However, despite this, she still failed to tell Declan that she was the ring leader of this circus. No, she would keep her identity a secret. She knew that Declan would know who she was soon enough, but until then, she preferred to keep who she was under wraps.

“Mm, I suppose. Andromeda is a rather dramatic name. It fits me.” She smiled faintly. “And don’t worry, I think Declan is a rather nice name, even if you are named after an alcoholic uncle.”

@Becfromthedead group

"Well, well, looks like I'll have to make a stop there," Declan said, slurring his words a little, "Surely no one else has done an article about it yet. Not to mention, it'd be a nice excuse to go out and have some fun."
He pondered the idea a bit longer.
"Any idea where I might get tickets?"


Andromeda hesitated for a moment. She didn’t want to give too much away about her position as ring leader, but she also knew that having a journalist come to the circus may be good for publicity. Maybe even something more. She would just have to let her crew know not to mess with Declan. For now, at least.

“Well, if you come to the circus tent tomorrow morning, I’m sure I could get you a ticket,” she said. “I have certain… connections at the circus.”

@Becfromthedead group

"I might just take you up on that," Declan replied, almost surprised, "I don't have work tomorrow anyhow beyond working on my stories."
He smiled a bit at her, then finished his drink.
"I think that'll be the last one for tonight. Don't want to end up like my namesake."
He chuckled a little at his own joke and started packing some of his things away; no more writing was going to happen tonight, that much was certain.


“You should? And who knows?” She grinned at him, a mischievous glint in her eyes. “You might see me there.”

She watched him as she finished up his drink and began to pack up his things. She had to admit that, even though she had to head back to her circus trope eventually, she was slightly disappointed when she realized he might be about to leave. She hated to admit it, but his company was rather enjoyable.

“Oh, are you leaving already?” She frowned slightly. “Aren’t you going to stay for another drink? No one leaves this early in the night, love.”

@Becfromthedead group

"Oh, well… Maybe one more," Declan said with resignation, "I'm not leaving just yet. Just no more writing for the night. I don't think it's going to happen. I take it you wanted to stay and chat for a bit?"
He may have been a bit oblivious some of the time, but even he was able to tell that much.
"I'll have some wine, then."
Declan hated how her voice when she called him 'love' sent chills down his spine; he wasn't exactly one to get hot and bothered around women- most of the time, that was. He was always distracted, working, always hanging out in the wrong places to make any actual relationships.