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Unbalance: An Æturnal Tale

Well, I've been hyping myself and writing it for almost a quarter of a year, and now I'm going to finally start posting. Don't worry that most chapters are really short, I'm going to be uploading one every day!


Prologue: A Friend At Last

Zyra ran, she had to have been running for days now. They would not let her rest, the few times she had looked back she had seen dark figures in darker robes chasing after her, seemingly levitating. She was hungry, she was thirsty, she really needed to sleep. A twig snapped in front of her, sending her skidding to a halt that ended with her landing face-first at the base of a tree.

Zyra looked up, fear on her face, and what she saw was surprising. A raven, holding a twig in it’s mouth, had just cracked it in front of her, it was white, which was strange, but normally albino animals had red eyes, this one had blue eyes. Zyra calmed down just enough to flip over and check if the figures were still after her, sure enough one of those things entered the clearing. The raven cawed and a large claw swiped the figure across the chest, sending it flying backward out of the clearing. Zyra looked back at the bird, a newfound respect in her eyes, “I think I’ll call you Omen.” She smiled as sleep overcame her.

Feel free to leave feedback, but I already have up to chapter 30 or so written, so it will take a while to be implemented.

Comments

  • woah, some characters seem familiar...

    Also, looking forward to the story!
  • Eh ... not trying to be rude, but are most if not all chapters going to be this short? I kinda feel that might ruin some moments.
  • I liked the albino raven. I was like I wouldn't think it a raven if it was white, but then I googled it and they look cool and distinctly ravenly (one might say "so raven")
  • I'm glad to hear your responses! @Nene this is about as short as they get, a few more are this length, but each of them are a full thought. If you want to have less interruptions come back every week or so and read all the chapters for that week.@Vongeo technically it's not albino it's leuiscistic (someone correct me on the spelling of that) albino ravens have red eyes, leuiscistic ravens have blue eyes. Different genetic variations, but I'm just being picky.
    @Deathaidkit yeah... the version I put up of her earlier was an incomplete thought, this is her whole story, and a lot of that got retconned at her request.

    and now, chapter 1

    Chapter 1: The Games Begin

    A void, blank and endless. Zyra sighed, she had been here before, and knew what was coming. The eyes opened up around her, huge, glaring, angry eyes, and mouths, hundreds of thousands of chittering mouths, she had gotten used to it, every time she slept they came. A game board materialized in front of her, her own face carved into the white king, “Chess, I see. And you’re even letting me go first!~ Looks like I’m beating you again today.” She moved the pawn in front of her king forward two spaces and the void cackled.

    A few moves later, Zyra smiled, “Check!~” A sharp pain went through her left shoulder. She spun her head around to look at the source of the pain only to find Omen, cawing into her ear, “Ow, what’re you doing here?~” The black knight moved, sliding cleanly along the surface of the board with a sound like nails on a chalkboard, this was normal, at least as far as these things go.

    Zyra woke up several hours later, looking around the clearing with confused eyes, “Where am I?~”

    Omen cawed next to her, reminding her of the previous few days, “This seems to be a problem.” She looked around the edge of the clearing, dark shapes flitting back and forth across her vision.


  • Sorry I didn't get on earlier today, chapter 2 is here though!

    Chapter 2: Allies of Adventure

    Zyra stood up, the dark shapes had stayed outside of the clearing. She picked up her staff and looked around, concerned for her well-being, and searching for a way out. Omen flew up onto her shoulder, cawing loudly, the shapes receeded. Zyra looked around, nervous, “I really don’t like that they’re scared of you, Omen.”

    She walked through the forest for a while, by mid-afternoon she reached a road and began walking along it. She began whistling a basic tune, and skipping her way along, Omen on her shoulder.

    She saw the camp before she reached it, some adventurers had set up basic shelters along the road and were sparring with each other, probably getting ready for an adventure. Upon seeing her one of them, a tall elvish man, called her over, “Hey, girl, why don’t you come on over? We’ve got food and a safe place to stay, I heard wolves have been wandering this area at night, I’d hate for such a pretty little thing like yourself to get mauled to death.”

    Zyra blushed slightly and approached, “Thanks, I guess. I’m Zyra, who’re you?~”

    The elf looked around at his two friends, “Well, I’m Xavice Barringster, and these are my friends, Canda and Peteak Stornbrew.” He gestured to the two gnomes sitting near the fire. Canda waved at Zyra, “How’s it going? *Kobold*.”

    Zyra rolled her eyes, “I *do* speak common, you know.” She walked over and sat down next to them, “So what are you guys doing out here?~”

    Peteak smiled at her, “We could ask you the same thing.”

    Xavice stepped over him, sitting down next to Zyra and wrapping his arm around her, she blushed and debated struggling away for a brief moment, “No need to be coy, Peteak. We’re going to be exploring an old ruin, seems like some sort of temple from what we’ve seen so far, which is the entrance.”

    Zyra pushed back against his arm, “Let go, please. I just want to get to the nearest town and find my way home.”

    Canda looked at her, interested, “Xavice, let her go, she *clearly* doesn’t like you. I won’t ask you where you’re from, but if you want to come with us, we’re a party member down anyway, and then you’ll at least have some cash on you when we head back to town, and you won’t get lost on the way back.”

    Zyra nodded as Xavice let go of her, “I don’t see why not, sure, I’ll join you.”


  • Chapter 3 is going live!

    Chapter 3: Elves and Boundaries

    Zyra awoke with a start, the first thought that went through her head was, *where am I?*, the second was, and who the hell has their arm wrapped around me?*. She sighed audibly as she remembered what had happened, she lifted Xavice’s arm off of her and rolled out from next to him, picking her staff up on the ground and hitting him over the head with it, “Creepo! Why the hell didn’t you stay in your own Ouro’ras-damned tent!”

    He looked up at her woozily, “Hey there pretty lady.” he managed to stumble out, “You made such a good pillow.”

    Zyra blushed with anger, “Get out, now. I don’t like you, I never did, and you can bet on your life I never will now. Go on, shoo!”

    He barely managed to get to his feet, “You’re loss, missy.” He was bleeding, a severe head wound, Zyra felt a twinge of guilt and spun her staff around once, ripples flying off of it as it spun. She raised her hand and aimed it at the back of his head, shooting him out of her tent with a spray of water, *at least the wound is gone now, that sicko.*

    The party gathered their things quickly, Canda and Peteak apologizing profusely for Xavice’s behavior, “He gets that way sometimes,” Canda whispered, “Especially around girls he likes, didn’t take him for a gemlicker though.”

    Zyra blushed, “Well tell him to stop or I’ll have to smash his skull in.”


  • Chapter 4 is up!
    Sorry this one is a little short.

    Chapter 4: Bitter Medicine

    The golem roared to life, so far the temple had been a series of puzzles. Zyra had been able to figure them out in seconds, but she let the others have their fun and try to figure them out on their own. This golem was different, mainly because it was moving, and angry, and trying to kill them all.

    Xavice blocked a blow from the beast with his swords crossed above his head, “Z-Z! Keep me alive please!”

    Zyra rolled her eyes, he had started calling her ‘Z-Z’ last room, apparently considering it a pet name. She didn’t answer, she hadn’t been answering before, she wasn’t a pet, or his girl, or whatever he said. Canda pulled out her puppeteer’s strings, moving them in time with Peteak’s spells to enhance them separately.


    The swords broke, so did the golem’s arm, Xavice screamed in pain as it fell on him and the golem began walking towards the rest of the group. “Guess I have to help now, huh?” Zyra sighed, setting her staff to spinning on the ground, aiming her hands at Xavice, “This might sting, but then again, you deserve it, creep.”

  • edited January 6
    Chapter 5, now coming to an existence near you.
    Again, sorry about the short chapter, the next one is short too, so- actually I'm posting 5 & 6 today, 'cause from 7 onward is where it gets interesting.


    Chapter 5: A Journey Begins

    They divied up the loot, Xavice taking most of it, much to the chagrin of the rest of the party, Zyra rolled her eyes at him as she counted her share, several thousand gold, it would last her quite a while, “Well, I’m glad we got this done. I hope I never see you after we get back to town, Xavice.”

    He looked over at her, hurt, “C’mon, I’m going to buy a house, you can stay there if you like.”

    “You’re a real creep, Xavice.”

    Canda laughed as she picked up a new set of puppet strings, “Why the hell are these here?” She flicked one of them and Peteak stumbled across the room, “Oh, that’s interesting.”

    Zyra walked with the group back to the entrance of the temple, “So, which way is town?”

    Chapter 6: Mists and Madness

    They reached the town after several days of travelling lost. The walls extending high above them, exuding a sense of foreboding in them. Xavice pushed the gate open slowly, as there were no guards in front of the town.

    Zyra stepped inside calmly, Omen cawing in warning on her shoulder. A cold wind blew out from the city, and a sign proudly proclaimed ‘Carcosa, the town of legends’. She stepped around it, noting it’s odd location in the center of the road. She began walking down the deserted streets, the others following her. The gate slammed shut behind them. “Oh, well then.” Peteak chuckled, “Looks like we’re stuck in here now.”

    “You aren’t stuck here!” Came a cheery voice from the mist in front of them, a vaguely female figure forming in front of them, “I’m Hali! What’s your name?

  • Chapter 7, I'm glad I posted two yesterday so the chapters are in line with the date!

    Chapter 7: Curse Your Sudden But Inevitable Betrayal

    Zyra awoke with a start, surprised by the bed beneath her, “Where am I?” She asked aloud to the empty room, getting up and heading out of the inn with Omen on her shoulder. A giggle came from the alley next to the inn, which she promptly turned down to investigate.


    “It’s not safe to go into alleys in a big city, Zyra.” Hali giggled from in front of her.

    “Oh, Hali, how’s it going?” Zyra smiled, noting that Hali was wearing the same bright yellow robe from yesterday.


    Hali smiled back at her, “Something bad might happen, curiosity did kill the cat, after all.”

    Zyra’s smile started to fade, “Hali, what’s going on? You seem a little… strange.”


    Hali’s eyes narrowed, “Just one more, Zyra, that’s all I need.”

    Zyra raised an eyebrow, “What do you mean, Hali, you’re starting to scare me…”

    Hali laughed, and the scene around them changed, the city melting away and forming into a dark room, pentagrams filled the walls, yellow paint and blood forming intricate designs across all surfaces of the room. Hali’s smile turned malicient, and she gestured around, “Your friends worked so well, why don’t you join them?”

    Zyra yipped, rushing away only to find no exit to the room, “What did you do Hali?!~”


    Hali took a single step forward, “I began the ritual, Zyra, I can’t leave it incomplete.”

    Zyra sighed, steeling herself for combat, “I don’t want to fight you, Hali.”

    Hali took another step forward, “I don’t want you to either, I want you to die.”

  • So so so so so so so sorry i didn't post yesterday! Here's yesterday's chapter as well as today's!

    Chapter 8: A Piece of the Puzzle

    Zyra cried, standing over what used to be the body of what used to be her friend. Omen on her shoulder. She hadn’t thought, merely acting in self defense. Visions of mere minutes ago flooded her mind, her slamming the hammer into Hali’s head, it had never done anything to anyone before, but somehow it had killed her instantly. Zyra remembered spending the last five minutes trying to bring Hali back, “Don’t you die on me Hali!~”


    Omen cawed, signalling that any chance of bringing Hali back was gone. He flew down to land on Hali’s chest, poking around in her robes. Zyra looked at him disdainfully, “Omen, that was my friend, you can’t just take her stuff!~”


    Omen lifted up his beak, in it was what looked to be a pendant, though it was only the upper right portion of it, the break marks on the pendant made that much clear. Zyra raised an eyebrow, “What’s that?” She reached out and touched it, feeling an intense peace wash over her, “Oh, I see. So she really was evil. I’m going to have to leave now, aren’t I?”

    Omen cawed, a door opening across the room as Zyra put on the pendant.

    Chapter 9: Interlude

    Hunter sighed as he reached Carcosa, he had been following the girl’s trail for a couple of weeks now, she was fast, he’d give her that. I hate this job. He thought silently, shielding his thoughts from higher forces. (He has however allowed me access to them in memory, in order to make telling his side of the story an easier job) Hunter smiled as he walked along the path, his dark robe of eyes and mouths scaring off the nearby wildlife, he looked out of his helm, the determination in his eyes matching that of those on his helm. The only visable part of him was his eyes, mouth, and purple ponytail, which came out of the back of the helm in a single slot for it. He rolled his eyes, their blood red shade a constant reminder that he was being watched. He knocked on the gate, “Hali, we’ve got to talk with him.” Hearing no response, he entered the darkened and damned city.


    Zyra had left a few days prior, her journey being calm and uninterrupted as she walked along, she had regained her jovial demeanor, and could see a town on the horizon, I hope it’s nothing like Carcosa.

  • edited January 10
    Chapter 10 goes live!

    Chapter 10: Havenfall

    Zyra smiled, the people of Havenfall, the city she had just reached, were really nice, they hadn’t tried to kill her yet, in fact she was practically thait god. Guess being a kobold where no one has seen one before has perks, she thought, chuckling.

    She had been there for a week, Hunter could tell, the place reeked of her, not in a bad way, just the metaphorical one. He sighed as she grabbed a villager, why can’t I just do this peacefully for once? “Where is she?”
    The villager squirmed in his grip, “ATTACKER! WE’RE UNDER ATTACK!”

    Hunter sighed as he snapped the man’s neck, “Why couldn’t I do it peacefully.” He drew his two longswords, their black metal gleaming in the afternoon light.

    Zyra got up as soon as she heard the call, Shoot, it’s probably the Figures. “Get me out of here.” She commanded a nearby villager, who complied and started running with her to the other side of the city.


  • I can just stop with the hype for each of these and just post the chapter in a spoiler tag, right?

    Chapter 11: Shift

    Zyra ran for miles, leaving Havenfall behind, the forest around her got dark rather quickly. Omen sat on her shoulder contentedly, cawing. Suddenly a blue portal opened up before her, showing a much lighter forest on the other side. “Did you do that?” she asked Omen, jumping in the portal without thinking twice.

    The clearing was warm, and the sunlight felt amazing. “Where are we?” Zyra asked no one in particular.

    The foliage rustled nearby, Danger. Zyra steeled herself for combat, drawing her staff, “I don’t want any trouble.”


  • Might be reading this, like... a bit.
  • Chapter 12: Good and Evil

    A tall figure with red skin and yellow eyes like a cat stepped out of the bushes, “Well it’s too late for that.” He snarled, gathering some red flame-like energy in his hands. Zyra’s eyes widened, casting up a shield of ice in front of her, damn, I’m not meant to fight, what am I even doing?

    The barrier melted insanely fast, Zyra didn’t have time to react before the fire was upon her, scorching her flesh and mind. The demon left after a few minutes, leaving her there. Is this what death feels like? Zyra thought, the flames slowly receding into her, That shouldn’t be happening, I should be dead by now. She managed to tap her staff, sending it into motion, spinning rapidly and sending a wave of healing water over her. She got up, “Well that sucked.”

    Suddenly, a blue angelic figure descended from the sky, “What kind of demon are you?” it asked Zyra.

    Zyra sat dumbfounded, “I-I’m not a demon, just a kobold.”

    The angel sighed, “Your Evil is showing through, I’m afraid. I’m going to have to kill you.”

    Zyra blinked a few times, “B-but aren’t angels supposed to be the good guys?” They were the last words she spoke that day. The blue fireball hitting her square in the chest as she finished, sending her recoiling into a tree and falling unconscious.

  • @Razgrey
    im glad you are, you might be showing up at some point. :smilebold:  
  • Chapter 13: Voices in My Head

    When Zyra awoke she had a splitting headache, “Wh-what happened? Omen?”
    The bird flew down from his perch and landed next to her, cawing once.
    *Woah, this is new, where am I?*

    *Where are you? What about me? Wait, who are you?*

    Zyra blinked a few times, “Whose voices are those?”

    *Mine, Good.*

    *Oh hell no, you can’t be Good, I’m Evil.*

    Zyra held her head, “What is happening, am i going insane?”

    *Great, now you’ve upset her*

    *Me?! You’re the one being all divisive in my host!*

    “Oh, great, I’m being possessed by two opposite powers, this can’t possibly go wrong.”
    *Not my fault he isn’t dead.*
    *It really is, as soon as you came in here we should have canceled out, what the hell happened?*

    “Please stop swearing, you’re giving me a headache.”
    *Swearing? Hell isn’t a swear word darling.*
    *Don’t you dare start patronizing my host.*
    *Your host?! She’s mine! I got here first!*

    Zyra sighed, “Fine, you’re both stuck in there, I can’t get you out, so just shut up please.”

    The voices strangely complied, giving Zyra time to gather her bearings.

  • Chapter 14: Grave Thoughts

    Hunter sighed, an entire town destroyed and tortured, and he still had no leads. He wept silently over their graves, it had taken a few days to bury each of them separately, but it was worth it in his mind. He wasn’t being piloted currently, so no one would know. *What we’re doing here is wrong. I wonder if she’s gone far enough that they’ll just let her be…?*

    Hunter walked around the town, perfect in its beauty, he had scrubbed the blood off of everything, and had even cleaned a few places the townsfolk had left alone. He looked at the new graveyard he had made, tears in his eyes, *I know we’ve done this before, but…*

    He turned his gaze to the forest, *she had to have gone that way, but do I really want to catch her?*

    He didn’t give it much thought, those kinds of things were dangerous, if he stopped doing his job he would probably be killed, or at least have his soul replaced. He turned to walk into the forest, determined to at least find the girl, she was dangerous, and he hoped she’d be strong enough to beat him.

  • Chapter 15, because actually giving the numbers outside of the spoiler tags is a good idea

    Chapter 15: Spark Work

    Zyra looked at the sign, “Dracton, huh? Cool town name.” She kept walking, she’d be there in an hour or so. She’d spent the last week with these voices in her head, occasionally a blue or red flame would appear in her hands and one of the voices would explain that it was them, she still didn’t understand, but was willing to go along with it until she did.

    Suddenly she was alight with cool blue flames, Zyra sighed, “What do you want, Good?”
    A figure matching her made of the flames stepped out of her, “Well, it’s been a while, I’ve gotten strong enough to exit your body now, I’m still bound to you though.”
    Zyra blinked a few times, “Great, so now I have to deal with you inside my head and talking to me in person.”
    A figure of red flames stepped out of her on the other side, “Yep, I’m here too. Since we can’t hurt each other for some reason, we’ve worked out most of our differences.”
    “Not at all.” Good said, “You’re a terrible person, and I’m just here to keep you in check.”
    Zyra facepalmed, “Look, can you two just not argue so much? It’s getting on my nerves.”
    Evil laughed, “C’mon Zyra, it’s not *that* bad! We’re friends, me and Good.”
    Good stepped back into Zyra, *I’m not strong enough to do that much, but in a few weeks I’ll be able to do that and fight for your safety almost indefinitely.*

    Evil nodded, “I can still hear you, Goody-two-shoes.” He stepped back into Zyra, *We’re going to be here a while.*

  • Hmm, shoulder demons. That is a classic.

    Random question - because of the nature of these forums, I guess a table of contents would be better at the last page than it would be at the first? I dunno.
  • @knguy I guess you're right, but once this part is done (part not chapter) I'll compile the whole part as one post at the end.

    Chapter 16: A Whole New World

    Her tracks stopped suddenly, that was good. There was also evidence of a trans-realm portal having been opened, which was bad. It meant he had a lead. Hunter sighed, “Guess I gotta go back then.” he waved his hands around, a small stopwatch appearing in his hand. He braced himself and spun it backwards.
    Time cried out in pain, pure agony washing over Hunter as he received a vision of Zyra stepping through the portal. He let go of the stopwatch. Time resumed as normal. He looked to where the portal was, “Kelsef Protos, Realm 29b, abandoned. I can do this.” He closed his eyes, the portal opening again, “This is Hunter, sending a report to base, the target has entered a separate realm through unknown means, requesting permission to continue pursuit.”
    He waited for a few minutes, someone had to be watching, he could feel it. Eventually a return message appeared in his head, *You are authorized to continue, Hunter, Use any and all required force, and be sure to retcon anything that happens.*

    Hunter nodded, “Thanks base.” He stepped through the portal, closing it behind him.

    Hunter’s eyes went blood red as the required world-lore flooded over his mind. He nodded, “Got it.” The clearing was devastated, a fight had clearly broken out here. His eyes glazed over as he looked at the burnt bushes and trees. “Good and Evil, got it. That… oh shoot she’s got both now…” *So much better for her chances against me, maybe I’ll let one sneak up on me…*

    He began following her trail, she was *really* bad at covering her tracks.


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