Catch the wind with unfurled sails.
I’ve been sailing the Stygian Seas
In search of forgetmenots and time.
Yeah, this distance can never be calculated.
To stay true, material, you’ll be underestimated
As you fall through the cracks in the pavement.
What more can someone say? A statement
Given, guilt construed; the number rears
Up. Take the last walk beneath hallow stars.
I don’t get it. The hunger turns to madness.
Is it in my blood or is it in my head? Dark
Waters wash away the old as a maelstrom
Follows me. It threatens to erase who I am.
A dagger thrust between your chest
And mine. See the light of dawn
On this horizon where dreams rest
In their forlorn cradle and coffin.
“Oh please just take away the pain, a stain of a life
Only washed away by our blood with this one knife.”
Eternity will call as we fall to our knees
One by one in procession. We’re falling
Through the skyline and I’m unafraid
Of what comes next. Hello or goodbye?
This is an evolution-revolution-devolution
To see myself fall from materialistic highs.
A time existed where mankind found itself owing a debt to its own hubris. The cities once full of jubilant laughter fell into silence as if they all were in mourning. One man died but his death wouldn’t grant amnesty to those responsible.
Him and a friend saved everything that was, is, and will be. He wasn’t great, humble, nice, or anything. . .definitely no messiah. But he didn’t have to be. A choice came to him; will you run away from consequences or will you face them even if they’re not your own?
The universe began dying after selfishness infected it with a blight. Thirteen heavenly gates manifested into existence. Each gate hosted a trial that could revitalize the universe. These two men faced trial after trial in a desperate attempt not to let everything fade away.
Desnei and Saker, the names of the two, only achieved victory at the last gate. Human rulers didn’t hesitate to martyrize them for their bravery. Two new species created by humanity stomached the brutality.
The Larthans met with the Veryn’Kah (Black Demons) months later. One of the Veryn’Kah remarked about the fact that humanity will recreate the blight. He pushed for extermination. Larthans offered reeducation as a rebuttal because of the human adage “two wrongs don’t make a right”. After weeks of intense debate both parties reached a compromise.
Three Larthans halted action from every human military while the others herded humanity into secure, self-sustaining cities. During humanity’s incarceration the Larthans and the Veryn’Kah fought off residual effects from the blight. The Endarkened.
Sadly thirty centuries wasn’t enough time. The universe decided humanity has to be the ones to save themselves. Us in the Royal Protectorate understand fully what it means to bear the sins of others. I once hated this organization with a passion but now I know the truth. We have a lot to clean up after. This isn’t a god’s mess. . .this is ours and we don’t need a miracle or a holy debt to fix it.
“We protect the innocent; we save the lost and forgive them of their transgressions; we fight darkness to see the dawn; we are the Royal Protectorate.”
I spoke the lost truth born from the Loom
Of Woven Lies to avoid impending doom.
The reality we’re all too afraid to take witness,
But it’s there within the heaviness of our hearts.
Inside there is a war we wage that’ll never end
Because we never learn. I stand guilty as well.
My heart left calloused from attempts to see
While still blind. Words others said resonate
Like birds singing yet they’re nowhere now.
Why did they lie? I’m left here hung by their words,
My noose; the condemned convict left for the crows.
All I did was ask for the truth then they took swords
Against my existence. “All the stones a giant throws.”
I’ll burn in white flames until we can see eye to eye.
A pair of dice, a canteen half full of water,
My tattered clothes, and an aged claymore;
The items I take with myself into this minor hell.
Legends say a monastery once used this place
For burials until a necromancer cult infiltrated.
The clergy couldn’t stop them. They penetrated
Every facet of the faith until they could replace.
Eventually they created a laboratory deep underground
To reanimate the deceased, inspired by fabled liches.
Fabled. The truth is they aren’t. Two factions of the dead
Fighting for revenge centuries overdue. I’m just unlucky.
I slept sound in my home yesterday. In the late of the night they came
And dragged me to this death trap. A victim, a candidate; the same.
I was told to listen to my heart whenever I find myself unsure.
Well I haven’t seen any certainty. This sickness with no cure.
The skies once held much better dreams and aspirations
Among wispy clouds. Silver linings, yeah, they fade away
When there’s no way to ever go back. Altitude unreachable,
At least for now I’m much too far from that calming skyline.
Evil exists even when people are blind. I couldn’t walk away.
A curse placed upon me will run its course. All I can ever do
Is fight against the fate I’ve been given. Is this my punishment?
Armies of the undead rise to meet me. Our endless war
Nothing more than a cry in the dark but we continue onward.
Dragged into these catacombs, forgotten; I still move forward
Chasing a distant skyline. Tell me this, how far is too far?
Something blocks the way back leaving me with one choice.
I must delve the dark if I want to never see memories erase.
The darkness inside lashes at my memories
In an attempt to steal who I am. It’s the mark
Burned into my flesh awaking my inner demons.
My wrath, lust, and pride slithering under my skin;
A burn that never goes away. Will they ever win?
I swallow my unsettled doubts, like pills with gin.
We don’t choose the fights we’re tossed into. Survive,
That’s what our hearts scream. Is that why I still strive?
Dark and cold black flames judge my heart to a feather.
I failed. Know that I’m not giving in. There’s a day that
I gotta see with these eyes and feel with these hands.
My wretched fate repeats day by day yet, I smile.
They call me Ariex Nightblade. I watched wars,
Witnessed genocide, killed a friend; I left
The Royal Protectorate to heal these scars.
This curse I took on instead of being ever so bereft.
My brother Synji bears the other mark.
The endarkened; the illuminated.
We serve two roles in a grand tragedy.
A man who lost his life and turned into something called the Grand Judge had a very rough existence. He never knew his parents due to a terrorism attack at the hospital he was born. The government discarded him into an orphanage with no funding until a wealthy couple adopted him. They treated him more like a slave than a kid by never giving him an education.
Ultimately an elderly butler taught the kid to read. They spent hours talking about the glorious world out there. One day the adoptive father fired the man for what he did. The man asked to adopt the kid because this wasn’t right for them to do. After consideration he accepted the offer at a considerable monetary cost.
They walked across town to a house on the outskirts. He taught the kid a lot but his health kept declining. A sickness crept in and robbed the kind man of his life. Eventually the government took custody again sending him into the military as a child soldier. This one journey in life taught so much pain and hate to an already hurt human.
He hung himself. . .
Desnei met a lot of tragedy as well. He never took his own life but life tortured him in so many ways. Many of the events that lead Desnei into the darkest side of his world create the series Rise of the First Blight. He lives in a world created by the Grand Judge (after he lost his humanity by playing god for millions of years).
Desnei is the last hope for the Grand Judge to finally change his heart. . .
“Treacherous burner of the tapestry of fate,
I spent eons creating a perfect civilization
Where pain doesn’t exist. Only destruction
Followed their births. All the suffering I hate.
Why would you forsake my final grand plan?
With a single thought I could start over again.”
“What do you have to hate? The tears and blood
We spill have nothing to do with you. If your flood
Clears the slate we won’t vanish from where we stood.
Each civilization you destroyed remains within.
What are you running from? It cannot be us all.”
“I’m no god. I was just a man that gave up.
When I was given a choice I just ran far away
And the choice caught me. Given my wish
Because I must learn of something new.”
“Maybe that life isn’t something you can choose.
Life has been and will be. Are you afraid to lose?”
“I already lost. A cruel world where I didn’t belong
Lost me with a little rope. The world was so wrong.”
“I pity you. Did no one ever show you a little heart from the start?”
I cross a foggy valley full of forgotten terrors without fear.
Vines lace the cliffs; mindless beasts wander; the fog
Obscures my sight. Every breath lulls me toward madness
But I keep my feet moving. I selfishly cling to my own life.
When the path is unknown what else can be done?
Step by step, risk by risk; I’m striving to atone
For the promises I couldn’t keep. I’m not set in stone.
Terrible things lunge at me and I stay calm as I fight through.
Fear would leave me for dead like everyone who came before.
I won’t be another tombstone laid in the ground. If I wash ashore
From this Hell who would say that the sky will remain blue?
Everyone is familiar with gray clouds and stormy weather.
The sky remains blue behind all the curtains in the theater!
What does it matter where I’ve been? It’s about where I’m heading.
Every deep valley finds me blind as I reach for the memories,
A blue sky with clouds slowly drifting by. Nothing will ever stop me.
I’m one of the terrors that reside here. Selfishly reaching for the light
No matter the cost, chasing a dream that’s been so long out of sight.
I stand in the devastation wrought by conflict. The victors will someday say how they fought for some grand ideal and paved a way towards a better future. They will only speak a fable far away from truth. People died because of stubborn policies protected by stubborn men. What will I say to the youth about us survivors?
Whoever strikes first usually lives. Any hesitation will shatter your bones and collapse your innards. The ideals I stood behind vanished as blood and gore drained onto the ground. Nothing could save me from the nightmare. I changed into the person I loathed, a killer. We all did.
Everyone says I should lie to forget what happened. I can’t hide from what haunts me when it’s me. A darker side surfaced. He aimed sword strikes at chinks in armor and burned foes in magical flames. I watched in terror knowing that this was me. Why did I enjoy watching other humans bleed and their skin melt? I’m sick inside.
When backed into a corner humans fight. The stubborn foreign policies forced my men towards action. Our enemy followed a man who promised a return to their homeland while he chased another agenda for someone else’s policy. Neither side cared to fill in these discrepancies before raising their arms. We soaked the Earth in iron cold blood.
Most humans know they’ll escape war but I’m unlike them. I tried protecting a city by aligning it with my enemy no matter what the cost was. My friend, my soul, and my ideals have all been washed away by a dark tide. Beneath the depths I realize that I’ll never return to the light I once so cherished. In suspension the coming war cradles me within the darkness my soul once rejected. Will a light ever reach me here before the tendrils drag me further below?