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Eteru Zvonimir
Eteru Zvonimir
Posts : 766
Join date : 2019-08-03
Age : 25
Location : Angelarium

Side Stories for Horizons (Eteru/Richard/Melon) Empty Side Stories for Horizons (Eteru/Richard/Melon)

Sun Oct 03, 2021 8:46 pm
Side Story: To Move On I

Location: Avalantus

Time: 4750 LLY, Sometime between the Abandoned Facility and the Museum

“I’ve always disliked cities.” Lincoln commented. Walking down an empty street that doesn’t seem to get much traffic. Nor much attention even. The road was somewhat riddled with cracks. A pothole here and there. Buildings line on both sides of it. Urban decay is a bit visible here. They seem to be going through an old section of the city. Which they wanted to be off the unbeaten path.

Assassin was still in her astral form, albeit did some modification to her attire to fit the local culture. Switching her kimono for black pants, undershirt, and gloves. She was walking close to him. Her grey eyes were sharp, paying attention to different things than he was.

“I can understand what you mean.” She says softly. Taking a glance to the boarded up windows of stores long closed down. “You don’t like to see so much rot in one place.” Just like that she pointed out the core of his feelings toward it. He can enjoy the city life, had a few times before, but he can’t imagine living in it. Especially in a city with a dense population.

He doesn’t have one reason for it. It was a culmination of little things that spark melancholy in his chest. Akin to how urban explorers feel when they go to abandoned places. Much like the facility he had been in awhile back. It could also be a bit of a bias as a result of growing up in the suburbs. That was a possibility.

“For sure, although it does seem they don’t leave things sitting derelict for too long.” He notes. Seeing some scaffolding around a few buildings. Likely for renovation. One thing that surprised him was how fairly clean the alleyways were saved for the usual graffiti. “But that in itself is a bit sad to me. I can’t help but wonder how many times the place has been renovated or outright rebuilt. Burying everything that came before it.”

“Heh.” Assassin gave a light laugh. “Starting to sound like my people, Master.” She joked but with understanding. Referring to how people in her homeland went from being spiritual farmers to being herded into an urban jungle in less than a century. Not that she was born in that era. Unlike Lincoln she didn’t mind an urban environment.

“I suppose so. I wouldn’t enjoy such a radical change under normal circumstances.” Looking back he realized that he was a bit unaware of how much even his own hometown was changing, due to obvious reasons. The old bank had been torn down, Burpin' Burger had been completely rebuilt, he could go on. He couldn’t imagine living in her people’s shoes back then. No wonder they were so depressed in his time.

“Like I said to you a long time ago, that’s how living is, Master.” She said, Showing her form of intimacy by setting her hand on the back of his head. Even if she was in an astral body he could still feel the presence of it. “Eras come and go. It’s okay to be nostalgic, but don’t let it trap you in the past.” He smiled at her words. While it was something spoken to him many times. It never hurts to be reminded of it.

“Thanks, Shiki.” She was right. It was just a challenge for him to not spend so much time mulling on the past. Once he starts to think about what could have been, should have been. It is a quick way for him to relapse into a depressive episode.

Looking at the high rises behind the buildings he was reminded of something. “That’s right, I won’t get a chance to meet your living self.” Assassin was a modern Servant. Meaning she was summoned from the Throne while her living self was still very much alive. She was born decades before he was. When time was last running normally he was nineteen, that would have put her in her early forties. Assassin was summoned in a period of her life when she was still doing the family business before retiring in her early twenties.

“That’s a shame.” She agrees, sporting her usual stoic expression. Although he could tell that she was equally bummed out about it. “We even talked about it more before that last Lostbelt.” Where they and the others had a conversation of what he would do with himself after everything hopefully went back to normal. She closed her eyes, her hands now in her pockets. “Haah, I was looking forward to it. My living self would have appreciated her daughter being with you.”

A smile tugged at the corner of his lips. Knowing what she was implying. “She was about six years older than me. Last I recall she was a year or so out of college.” He said. It was during that short year between the crises that they really planned for his life after Chaldea. Before, she had told him to come to her house if he lost his house or didn’t want to stay there anymore, saying her family would hire him as an assistant. And that was generally something that he was interested in at the time.

“That she was.” She opened her grey eyes. Giving him a teasing look. “You two would have gotten along well I feel.” He gave a light blush at what she was implying. Wasn’t incorrect of course. Even at her age, Mana, her living self’s daughter still had an obsession over her father. If he came into the picture he would have gotten Mana addicted to someone else. That being himself. Assassin then gave an amused tune. “Of course, since my Master is such a homewrecker, no doubt you would have loved being with my living self as well.”

It was a joke he knew, but he couldn’t help but get flustered over it. “Y-You know I don’t go that far!” He pouts. Yes, he was brazen. But he liked to not make messes. Much like how he made sure that no one saw him making love to Ialla in front of them. “I would have ensured they stayed together. All I needed to do was make them accept my spot in their home. So by technicality I’m not a homewrecker by definition.” It’s dubious he admits. But the mental image of having sex with Mana laying on top of her mother. Both nude and glistening with sweat, turned him on, and he wanted that very much.

Assassin gave a soft laugh. “You do have some tact, I’ll admit.” Silence hung in the air for a few seconds before she spoke again. “That said, you’re still alive, Master. I know my living self because she’s me, no matter the age difference. And I know that I would have wanted you to live.” Her words certainly reached him. The effect was amplified when he saw the skyscrapers in the distance. The metal and glass reflecting the sunlight off of it. A feeling of sonder came to him.

Life goes on, as it always will. Some marry, some serve their country, some fall in love, and some die. The story of life is written one chapter at a time, and while characters come and go, the story continues. It repeats itself again and again and again as new characters jump in and drop off, but it will never stop as long as there remains an author to write it.

Every family had produced many authors and would produce many more in the decades and generations to come. Their stories wouldn't be so different from those of their forefathers, for while times, language, and culture may change, the nature of life does not. They all love, they all know sorrow and joy. They always have, and they always will.

Therefore, he knew that the Hoshizoran story of Lincoln Loud can’t begin if he doesn’t step forward. He gave a warm smile to his servant, “Thank you again.” He wanted to kiss her but alas that would require her to materialize. And he still wanted to keep her presence hidden. Looks like he has much to reward her when they get to his ship after this. Strange, for a moment he felt a sense of deja vu. Oh well.

He ran his hand through his hair. It was getting a bit windy. “To look at the sunny side, I don’t have to adapt to your home country.” That got an amused chuckle out of her. “Still, I was looking forward to it.” Mostly helping out with her living self’s husband, Mikiya who has a history of investigating disappearances. Aiding him in that endeavor appealed to him. Something which would put his acquired skills to good use and would had fulfilled a old, near-forgotten childhood dream of his to be like his favorite comic book superhero Ace Savvy,

Assassin gave a tune in agreement. “He would have loved your help. That said, does that still interest you now? Playing the detective I mean.” She asks him. A similar question was given to him before. Back then he didn’t think much of it because he wasn’t truly thinking about having a future in the first place. But now…

“I don’t know, I suppose it does in a way. It would fall in line with the role I’m building for myself in Ialla’s House.” That being to stand behind the future Kell acting harmless and eccentric while acting outside of the limelight. Operate what could be anything really. Solving disappearances would give him clout and resources. Both of which are a necessity given he had got himself on the political game board.

“It would be low on my list of priorities.” He had a greater degree of responsibilities than he would have back home. “All things considered, it’ll just be best to work for my life coach for a while.” There was a feeling that Tulam was the type to keep to himself on a planet to focus on his research. Spending time with him would not only get the help he needs, but it would solidify his image of being harmless in the House if he doesn’t do much on that end. Just some quirky mage going off to do field research somewhere for periods of time. He felt satisfied with that idea for the time being.

A 8-Bit chime rang out of a holographic billboard near on the other side of him. He glanced over in time to see an astral stream of data leaping out of it. Landing next to him it formed into the human shape of MoonCancer who gave a warm smile to. “Welcome back.” She gave a warm smile back. His smile was a reward all on its own. The gang reunited, they all continued on their way towards the museum.
Eteru Zvonimir
Eteru Zvonimir
Posts : 766
Join date : 2019-08-03
Age : 25
Location : Angelarium

Side Stories for Horizons (Eteru/Richard/Melon) Empty Re: Side Stories for Horizons (Eteru/Richard/Melon)

Fri Nov 12, 2021 10:42 pm
Side Story: To Move On II

Location: Station 3 - Hallway leading to Elevator

Time: 4750 LLY

The rhythmic beat of his steps gave a small echo in the hallway he’s walking down in. Heading towards the elevator that would take him down a few levels below where the laboratory lies. There he will begin being instructed by Tulam’Run on how to help start rebuilding his body and who knows what else he has in store for him. His thoughts began to wander to a different subject that was resting in the back of his mind.

The situation with Nilana’Ran. He had gotten off on the wrong foot with her. But he knew the folly in even thinking that it would be a simple manner. Nilana’Ran very much reminds him of stories of colossal, prideful goddesses lounging on their pedestal. Looking down at the meager ants as they covet her. Offering the divine being clumps of hard matter as if it has value to a being who is infinite.

Most of all he knew that she wanted to see him squirm. To see just how much he’s willing to dig the blade into himself. Did he want to go that far? Was any semblance of a relationship with her that doesn’t involve his untimely death something he wanted? When did he even begin considering it? He trusts what Tulam’Run had told him about her. Despite that, deep down something told him that while it would be painful. There’s merit in interacting with her. Knowing that then he still doesn’t know of a way to appease her.

“Why not give her one of your Servants?”

He came to an abrupt stop. Finally sensing that Shiki was behind him. Leaning against the wall with her arms folded over her chest. Those words left him at a loss. At first he thought he didn’t hear her right. To just suggest something like that so casually. “W...what?” He didn’t turn to face her. It left him so bewildered.

“Master.” She began calmly. “Do you know why I was persistent in ensuring that you would have gone to live with my living self?” The question unsettled him. Once more he could feel the truth creeping around his neck. But he refused to acknowledge it. Whether it was intentionally or not. Once in a blue moon, he would question if he had grown up at all.

Lincoln chose to dance around it. “To give me a place to start a life outside of Chaldea.” How strange. For once those words felt hollow. As if it had become a lie. To suggest that the possibility was something he could grasp with his hand. The fact that he could ever live a normal life again.

He heard her give a sigh. “You know that I dislike people who know their true nature, yet still lie to themselves.” Her words made him grit his teeth. “Master, you’ve forgotten again haven’t you?” The peculiar question made him finally turn around. This time Shiki was standing in the hallway facing him. Hands in her pocket.

“Forgotten...what?” He didn’t like where this was going. Yet his feet were rooted in place. A part of him refused her words to go unheard. For he needed to hear it. He looked at her face. She was stoic as always.

“The nature of a Servant existence.” She spoke as if that explained everything.

He furrowed his white brow. “I know what a Servant is.”

“Do you?” She inquired. Tilting her head. Silence hung in the air for three seconds before she spoke again. “I’m a special case myself. Considering I walk when my living self did for a time. I came to be when the rest of the world burned, my city had been reduced to ruins along with its inhabitants. I’m dead, but not quite, my body burned but not yet completely burnt away. I exist in a state right before dying, asleep and seeing a dream that became the apartments seen in the Singularity that you went to, the Throne reverting me back to a younger age. When I was summoned again to Chaldea afterwards, I knew that my very existence is nothing more than a dream, but if I were to wake up I would have died along with everyone else in the city. When Goetia fell and everything turned to normal. Because I’m a proper Servant, it meant that the real me was able to wake up without any issue.”

The meaning of her words loomed over him. They were heavy. Making his face wrinkle in unease. He knew that she was right. That truth was buried in his mind because he made it so. Shiki's face softened, her eyes held sympathy for him. “I wanted you to go meet me because I hoped that you would finally wake up from the dream you clung to for far too long.”

He heard the implication in her words. “Why couldn’t you stay with me?” For some reason he distinctly pictured himself as a young child in front of her. Not comprehending why she couldn’t come with him. Was he being childish?

“You know the answer to that.” He made no response to that. “We can’t value the past more than the present. I want you to be with me, the real me. One of flesh and bone. Someone you can grow old with. Most of all she can change.”

She zipped open her jacket. Tugging it open with one hand to show her bare upper body. His eyes were drawn to the dimly glowing seal he made over her womb. Knowing that it was what Shiki wanted him to look at. “The only reason I can feel any emotion outside of love is because you changed my Saint Graph. Otherwise it would have been impossible, a contradiction so great that it would have cracked my Saint Graph. Likely destroying me in the process.”

He knew that. it was fundamentally impossible for her to have emotions due to her Origin, Nothingness. That was why he did it. But that isn’t the point here. One that Shiki was coming to. “Much like how I’m fleeting, so are Servants. We weren’t meant to walk alongside you for so long. And it shows how we are incapable of change. Servants by nature are a stagnant existence. We can never grow in any shape because that is not our purpose. No matter how much sentimentality you have for us. At the end of the day we are nothing more than shades of the past.” Shiki closed her jacket back up.

He was reminded of what Canaan told him so long ago. How the dead can’t rule the living. At first he thought he understood what it meant but it actually held more meanings than he thought. She was also saying that he can’t forsake the future to live in the past. Lincoln didn’t realize that his hands were tightly clenched.

Putting her hands back in her pockets she looked at him, “I wanted you to outgrow me. To live in the present with the real me. Rather than indulging in a pleasant dream. To put it bluntly, you needed to let me go. Let the dream fade away as all dreams do. We iall wanted you to let us go.” Her words made him widen his eyes in surprise. Never knowing that so many apparently felt the same way as Shiki did.

“Hmph, of course. It would sting. More so than much. Some would likely throw a tantrum. But deep down we are aware of our nature. In the end we would come to only feel one thing, gratitude.” At first he didn’t understand what she meant but it became clear to him on its own as Shiki talked. “By letting us go, you honor us by walking into the future. To take the opportunities that surround you. Because that is something we can’t ever have.” For they’re dead.

Tension left his body. How could he possibly refute that? And yet he feels so torn inside. Shiki let out a sigh. “I don’t fault you for being hesitant. You did spend many years being surrounded by the dead. For a long time we were all you had. But...Master. That is not the case anymore. You need to move on.”

“I...don’t know how.” His voice wavered. Shiki was asking for a lot out of him. In a long while he never felt so vulnerable. So exposed like this. Was he really a fool to have thought he could live a life surrounded by his Servants? Of course he was. The truth was too painful to ignore now.

“Take small steps.” She spoke gently. “The situation with Nilana’Ran provides a good opportunity to start getting used to it. Think of a Servant that she would like then give it to her.” On one hand he agreed with her. It just would be a hard moment. Yet having thought that. His inner turmoil is something that Nilana’Ran seems to take delight in. Furthermore, it would serve as a good offering to her.

He gave a strained sigh. Turning back around to face the elevator. “I’ll think about it.” He said with forlorn. Before he continued walking he spoke one last thing over his shoulder. “Thank you though, for helping me with this.”

“That’s my purpose.” She said simply before dematerializing as he walked towards the elevator. This conversation will likely rest on his mind for a while. For now he just needs to put it aside to focus on the tasks in the day ahead. Tulam wouldn’t like it if he was distracted.

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