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J Hart F

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Changed Earth (Part 10.1)

"It is time." Charles stood at the edge of a green pasture overlooking the oceans that spread before him. His gaze sought a small island many miles away. Dark clouds billowed with fire above the ocean surface with patches of clarity moving about, evidence most of the destruction had come to an end. Relief swept over Charles; inaction had finally come to an end as well. Now his plans could be put into place and the road would be clear soon enough. "One thing first," he whispered to himself, eyes narrowing in an attempt to see further.

Turning away from the depressing view, Charles headed back to the city. Its sprawling buildings dressed with a mixture of Victorian and Greco-Roman architecture were teeming with life. The life Charles had single-handedly saved. They were thriving under his strict guidance, and no-one complained. It was everything Charles could desire in his society; if only they could remain like this forever.

But time, as he knew, would change the dynamics and his little civilization would grow. Charles had certainly seen enough of time to know how the monster lurks around him, and he would be a good ruler. A grand ruler. Image would be very important, thus he needed to take off some of his years, to reverse what time had done without his consent.

For this he needed the sun, which was hard to come by. Much of the smoke had thickened around the magical force-fields created to protect the two surviving civilizations which meant that getting to the sun required more energy. Something which use to be so simple for Charles he now had to work at. He went to the one person he could trust, his only ally whose anger for their foes ran just as deep as his own, whose abilities to work with Gaia were second only to Ethan's.

Charles entered the city and went straight to his house. He kept it simple and small, equipped with only the essentials to live apart from his people. One thing he learned: don't indulge in luxury when the people suffer, even if it's emotional suffering. Once inside, Charles sent a quick sending through the flow of energy to Alasia.

Within minutes, she appeared. Her dark skin and wavy hair stood in a harmonious contrast to the billowing black clouds and darkened snow beyond the protective bubble. But her eyes were as white as ivory freshly honed into a dagger. Wearing a simple floor-length gown, she walked with an ease and grace to stun anyone. Charles was aware of her beauty and tolerated her posture only because he knew it suited him in the end. She had perfected the ability of youth and knew how to remain in it for eternity. It was something dark and mysterious that Ethan and Charles had both neglected until it was too late.

"You called for me, Elder Sadhin."

He watched her walk over to a seat and piously sit in it. He enjoyed her fastidious game with him. "Yes. I need your assistance in something."

"How charming. The great Elder Sadhin needs assistance from me?" Her rolling, musical tone carried crisply through the room. Charles walked over and sat next to her, giving to pretense to elegance.

"I must be able to reach the sun for a difficult working."

Alasia's eyes narrowed, but her posture remained relaxed and straight, back not touching the chair and hands resting casually in her lap. "What sort of working would require two adepts to reach the sun?"

"One which requires complete attention, where every error causes an incalculable percent of damage to the worker. One which I'm not willing to take many chances on."

She smiled and her eyes took on a mischievous texture. "And you trust me to help with this?"

Charles nodded. "You and only you. You know what's at stake if I fail. You know how much of our survival is tied to my presence here. You know where the true loyalty of the people lies."

Finally, her facade released and she slumped back into the chair comfortably, turning her head away as she exclaimed, "Ha! Loyalty like this lasts only so long, Charles."

"And that's exactly why I need your help to make me younger again."

Eyes shooting wide to reveal white all the way around her dark brown irises, Alasia whipped her gaze back to Charles. "That's crazy. There's no way to reverse the nature Gaia has bestowed upon us." She shook her head. "Not even one as powerful as yourself could accomplish that, and I know Gaia doesn't approve of the cosmetic alterations. I've tried a few myself using Her. They never work out. I used countless doctors trying to reverse what I did to myself, and luckily a few were able to make me look like this. She hated that."

"I know vanity isn't one of Gaia's concerns, but I fear for the well being of this culture that if I remain looking old they will eventually think me useless and outdated and replace me with someone as short sighted as yourself."

Her claws stiffened. Her jaw set. Her eyes glared with a fire ready to strike.

"Come now, you know you wouldn't be able to rule a civilization. Much less, a world."

Alasia seemed to accept this statement, but didn't return her friendly tone as she said, "It doesn't matter who rules, as long as we survive at this point. We all know you can't continue supplying the power to everything forever. And you won't let anyone help."

Charles nodded. "And that's because I want you all preparing for the more important things."

"More important than surviving?"

"Surviving means readying the Earth. I can handle the present situation without a blink. I need you to ready the next steps."

The silence that fell over the two was thick with thought. Finally, Charles asked, "Will you assist me, Alasia?"

"Of course. It's not like there was really a choice anyway." She stood abruptly. "When?"

"Tomorrow, first thing in the morning."

Alasia let out a short laugh. "It's always morning this time a year. And in a few months it's always going to be night. When are we going to do it?"


"Alright. I'll be here then."

Charles shook his head. "No, meet me at the cliff."

Thundering towards the door, Alasia left. As soon as she exited, the facade of poised evil enveloped her form once more.

1 comment:

  1. I love Charles.
    I really like the way you wrote Alasia. Narrowing eyes and stiffening claws? LOVE it love it!
    She's kind of a bitch though and I hope terrible things happen to her. Hehe.

    Anyway - it keeps getting better, Josheleh.
    Love you