Wash Out

I can feel you blinding me.

Brilliant, bright light. White against my eyes. Draining the color from the world, eating away the perspective. It seeps, that fluorescence, dragging my vision out from behind my eyelids. Merciless, as you try to disarm me. As you try to cripple me. As you try to force me to yield.

As you force me to face the light.

It’s…

Deplorable.

Senseless.

You suck the color out of everything.

You know that, right?

It’s harrowing, what you do. Pointless.

Cruel.

I’d much rather have washed out colors than this. Rather have nothing—have total darkness, because at least darkness can have variation. At least you can adjust to darkness.

This complete white-out though…

It’s tasteless.

A dull, pale void.

Don’t you think?

I know why you do it.

To desensitize me.

At least, you try.

I think that, in the end, it does the exact opposite of what you intend it to do. Rather than let it wash over me—bleed me out, make me blinding as the sun, blinding as you are—I cling tighter to my shadows. Grip tightening around the dark.

When you combat me with that vivid, piercing light, I don’t give in. Not an inch.

I fight back. Continue reading “Wash Out”

Stealing Stars

The sky was blackening, the exact reverse of a whiteout. All of it going dark, simmering away into nothing. Wisp-like. Smoke-like. Stars winking out all over the damned place. Giving in, giving up, giving out.

And he stood there, smirking. Eyes hollows, empty holes. Eviscerating anything that dared venture closer to those dismal openings. That hellish hunger.

He stood there smirking, beneath the dying stars.

And I stood there, too.

Glaring.

Staring him down.

Unafraid.

If this is the end… then…

So be it.

I’ll use it all—I’ll use everything.

I’ll give it everything I’ve got.

I won’t go down so easily.

I will fight.

Continue reading “Stealing Stars”

A Call From the Dark

For a long time, I tried not to remember. Because remembering was dangerous. Could lead me back to it. To that lurking feeling. What waits in the shadows. That knowledge.

It was him.

It is him.

He’s here too.

For a long time, I tried to forget that.

But sometimes…

Sometimes he just…

He takes over. Continue reading “A Call From the Dark”

Shadow of the Stars

“Do you expect the light to return, simply because you wish for it? Should the earth bow so easily to your whims? Plunge others into discord to sate your despair?”

I flinched, convicted. Conflicted.

Part of me said yes. The part that was not made from stars. That longed for something other than the dark. That wished for the sun to return so I could warm myself against its gently sizzling beams. Those rays that would warm my soul like nothing else could. That part of me was foolish. That part affirmed.

Part of me said yes.

But, the other part?

Of course, it was more reasonable.

Even under the the heaving dark, amassing with stars. Corralling light and shadow together to create the beauty that dusted the heavens. Even as oppressing as the earth’s darkness was—as boastful, as ravenous—still.

Part of me said no.

…the correct part, more than likely. Continue reading “Shadow of the Stars”

Landing Among Stars

It was dark here.

It’s been dark for a while.

The sky swallowed us one day. Decided that we weren’t worth its greatest gift. One night, the sun went down—just as it always does.

And it stayed that way.

That was all it took for us to be consumed. Trapped.

Eternal night.

Continue reading “Landing Among Stars”

Sitting In The Dark

Mercenaries have no mercy.

That’s what I was always taught. That we, the unlucky few, manage to get hired because of that reason and that reason alone.

We have no mercy.

When we fight, we pull no punches. When we dive, we swim with sharks. And, when we speak—

We don’t withhold the truth.

Don’t ask a mercenary for anything. Not unless you can handle the clearest cut.

That’s what goes around the galaxy. That’s what we’ve been taught—what everyone has been taught.

If you want someone who’s going to hold back.

Don’t hire a mercenary. Continue reading “Sitting In The Dark”

Bone Dragon

It rose.

From the dark that separated the lava’s dim light and myself. Rose up, from the burning earth. A tan color, singed at the edges, that poked through the folds of red, glowing earth. It rose steadily, meaningfully. It’s sockets were empty, dark. I could feel death seeping from them. Hades itself spilling from the empty holes.

It rose.

The bone dragon.

Continue reading “Bone Dragon”

The Stellar Path

“How can you be sure that that’s the right path?”

When she asks, her eyes are focused far off. Lingering in the dark. Clinging to the blank spots in space that neither of us can see into. That neither of us—her, with her newfound knowledge, and me, with my vast experiences—can see into.

We are blind out there in those places.

Tucked between the stars.

The darkness that those places are purveying.

But not winning.

Not if you don’t want it to.

That’s what I can see in her eyes as she looks. Not curiosity. Not wonder.

Fear.

I shake my head at her. Already, she has made a critical error.

You don’t look between the stars for knowledge.

You look there for guidance. Continue reading “The Stellar Path”

Wish Maker

Every floating rock knows:

You might be a meteor someday.

If you’re not a comet—already spiraling, turning to ash, leaving a trail behind you—then you know:

You could be a meteor.

You float around, simply stuck in the void of space. Unable to stop your trajectory. Unable to change things. Unable to take control. You live your life knowing:

You’re just floating in space.

Just floating by.

Control? That’s so far out of sight, it’s not even an illusion. If you’re a rock floating in space, you don’t kid around. Don’t pretend with yourself. You throw all that useless, make-belief trash out the window because you know.

You have no control.

One day, something might catch you. One day, you might feel that tug, that pull. One day, you might not be floating. You feel the gravity of it, and you have no choice in the matter. You’re no longer floating.

You might be falling.

Crashing.

Burning.

And there’s nothing you can do about it, except to hope.

As you fall from the sky, begin turning into ash, begin building fire, don’t think about the end. Don’t close off your senses. Don’t be overwhelmed by the falling, by the fire. Don’t allow yourself to miss it.

Listen.

Do you hear it?

Do you hear the last sound?

Do you hear that hopeful plea?

Do you hear?

Have you made a wish? Continue reading “Wish Maker”

Hopeful Lights

I was not interested in the humans at first. Not at all.

Thousands of years—or, perhaps, it was the blink of an eye, I can’t be sure—passed before I finally found out why my kind were so enamored by them. Why they found them amusing. Entertaining. Why they risked their lives, and our secrets, in order to interact with them.

After a good long while, I figured it out.

Such small, delicate creatures. So powerless. And yet:

So hopeful.

The beauty of humanity was locked into that fact. Showcased in their faces as the sky lit with stars in the chasm of the night. How enamored they were with the world. How wondrous they found life, even in the darkest of nights.

Such helpless creatures. Unable to grasp their circumstances, unable to withhold the hand of death, and yet:

Still hopeful.

Always hopeful.

At least:

The strong ones were, anyway.

Continue reading “Hopeful Lights”