ms. eldritch horror

the contrarian
jun lei

those we left behind:

Message to Readers

zero editing, zero care, dropping this off as a means to procrastinate what i should really be doing


June 10, 2019


They take you to see the ocean for the first time. It is blue, the deepest cerulean, with sparkling shards of glass glimmering on the surface. You hear the gentle wooshing of the tides coming back...and forth...back...and forth...and it is as if the fire that has been plaguing your soul, your very being, has gone out. You've never smelled the ocean breeze before, this salty, windy onslaught, but with the clouds overhead you cannot call it unpleasant.

    Your companions are struck with similar awe, for different reasons. The tall green one is as ease out here, relaxed, calmer than you've seen him out on the road. You know he used to be a sailor. The water, it calls to him in more ways than any of you can understand. Those nights where he awakes coughing up seawater, though you are so far inland the crops are in drought, are impossible. Should be impossible. But stranger things are sure to happen. Your unconscious stirs. You watched a stone that looked like a crocodile's eye enter his stomach and it hasn't come out.

    The strange, horned, blue girl is brimming with longing for this place - it is her home, yet she cannot return to it how she is. It is due to her own blunder and folly that she cannot announce her return to the place she loves so dearly. She has never stepped foot on these sands before. She only beheld them from her bedroom window before she had to leave. It was a long time. She breathes in deep, and the weasel around her shoulders skitters slightly. She pats him softly, but unlike her companions, she does not face the shore. The town behind them, she wonders if her mother will be singing tonight.

    The strong one, with little diplomacy and an even shorter temper, the one who stopped and sat with you when you were...affected, she is jumping over rocks, boulders, making her way down the shore and pausing at the place furthest out to sea. Like you, she has never seen water this...expansive before. She sits there a while, but her nerves get the better of her, and she sprints back the way she came, back to your cart - stolen, but not without reason - and reaches past the boxes in the back. Her arm disappears entirely and reappears with an owl sitting perched on her bracer. She tries hard to tame him, but he is as difficult as she.

    Your little friend, your closest friend, she will not go near the water. You cannot understand it, but you will, in time. The tall pink creature tells her of seagulls for the first time. These new animals are curious to her. She lies the bait, and as they descend in a squawking havoc, she shoots down as many as she can with her little crossbow. It is barely hidden by her cloak. She is so small. She grins, her sharp canines and large yellow eyes a terror to those outside of your company, but here she is loved. Here, they smile back.

    The tall pink one, he is the newest. This is his first journey, his first adventure outside the limits of his old cemetery abode. Collecting tea leaves as you travel, you worry for him. He is so new and naive to the ways of the world. So soft and gentle. His understanding of the world outside his forest is limited, and ever growing. But he is not afraid. He is stronger than you know. And as he sinks his toes into the sand, the tide capturing and releasing his errant feet, he hums at this new sensation. This is nice.

    And you? You're floating. Half submerged and bobbing out to sea. The water is calm. Your eyes are closed. The steady rhythm of your heartbeat is comforting - no erratic spikes or fast pulses. At the back of your mind, a voice tells you you don't deserve to relax. People have died because of you, and you're relaxing at the beach? But the green one appears above you and shock wipes the voice from your mind. You splutter and desperately try to tread water while he laugh heartily above you, standing on the water as easily as though it were stone. His armour glints in the sunlight, the arcane runes illuminated.

    You realise now the grit from your travels and your toil has been washed away by the saline current. It feels strange to be clean. Like you are missing a part of your body, a second skin. But while you are engulfed by the ocean, it does not feel that way. The air cannot touch where the skin has been washed, and just for a while, you close your eyes again and speak to the man standing above you.

    "I like the ocean."


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  • June 10, 2019 - 6:49am (Now Viewing)

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1 Comment
  • elisa

    you're writing again, darling, and it's beautiful!!! god this is incredible i've missed ur art so dearly

    12 months ago