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Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 Moveset:

Gender: Male

Species: Evil Spirit/Sword

Game Series: Soul Series

First Appearance: Soul Edge (1995)

Health: 1,050,000 HP Points

Voice Actor: Patrick Ryan

Power Ranking (Out of 7)

Intelligence: 3
Strength: 7
Speed: 5
Stamina: 5
Energy Projection: 5
Fighting Ability: 7

Assist Alpha: Soul Edge Guillotine (Direct, Tilt Down)
Assist HC: Soul Explosion
Assist Beta: Soul Edge Spear (Direct, Front)
Assist HC: Soul Explosion
Assist Gamma: Soul Wave (Direct, Instant)
Assist HC: Soul Explosion


There was a time when a man named Siegfried Schtauffen took control of the Soul Edge, becoming powerless under the power of the blade. He eventually was able to retrieve his mentality and used the power of the holy blade Soul Calibur in order to save his body. He was separated from his Nightmare form and became the new wielder of Soul Calibur, while Inferno made a pact with Zasalmel, who made him a new body of his own. Thus…Nightmare was born.

Entrance: Nightmare will have his back turned to his opponent. Then, swinging Soul Edge over his head, he'll turn around and get into his fighting stance.

Entrance Quotes:

#1: Give in to the Dark Abyss of Despair!

#2: Taste Fear!!~

#3: Tremble within my Darkness!!

#4: Your soul will soon become mine!

#5: My Power is absolute!

Against Ryu: Warrior of Legend…your soul shall be mine!

Against Akuma: Your soul is like that of my own…

Against Sentinel/Zero: Soulless being, be gone from my Sight!


Attack Layout:

Ground Level

Standing Light: Sword Handle (51,000)

Standing Medium: High Kick (64,000)

Standing Light: Nightmare Gauntlet (80,000)

Standing Special: Soul Edge Upper Swing (90,000)


Crouching Light: Low Kick (49,000)

Crouching Medium: Low Gauntlet (65,000)

Crouching Hard: Low Soul Edge Sweep (78,000)

Air Attacks

Air Light: Straight Kick (57,000)

Air Medium: Soul Edge Slash (70,000)

Air Hard: Soul Edge Slash #2 (80,000)

Air Special: Soul Edge Axe (90,000)

Unique Moves

Straight Stab (F + H) (85,000)

Nightmare Smash (F + M) (70,000)

Special Moves

NightMare Punch (Qcf + L) (90,000)

Charged with the powers of Soul Edge, Nightmare will do a straight punch charged with dark energy. The attack can stop fireballs if timed properly.

Soul Edge Guillotine (Qcf + M) (100,000)

Nightmare will bring down his Soul Edge on the opponent, the attack causing an OTG bounce and can stop projectiles.

Soul Edge Spear (Qcf + H) (110,000)

Nightmare's reach at its best. Nightmare will stick out his sword straight at the opponent. This attack can smash through any projectile in the game and takes up 2/3 of the screen in distance.

Knight Crusher (Dp + A) (140,000)

His standing Mashing Y/Triangle combo from SC4, Nightmare will smash down his sword a total of three times, the first two times causing a possible hit decay while the third strike causes a ground bounce.

Soul Crusher Side Slash (Qcb + L) (95,000)

Charged with electric blue soul power, Nightmare will swing his sword sideways, sending the opponent flying back. The attack can cancel out fireballs.

Soul Crusher Uppercut Slash (Qcb + M) (115,000)

Charged with electric blue soul power, Nightmare will uppercut his sword and the opponent with it. This attack can be air comboed into if the attack is timed right.

Soul Crusher Drop Kick (Qcb + H) (120,000)

Charged with electric blue soul power, Nightmare will do a double leg drop kick at the opponent, causing a wall bounce upon connecting with them.

Soul Wave (Down + Down + A) (100,000)

Nightmare will build up a large amount of energy within his body, then expelling it outward in a barrier-like burst. This attack causes an instant Wall bounce upon contact, even from the other side of the screen.

Hyper Combos

Flaming Souls (Qcf + AA) (300,000)

A quick one-hit armored Hyper combo, Nightmare will take Soul Edge in both hands and the blade will alight on fire. Nightmare will then lunge forward and uppercut it into the air, This attack has 2 hits of hyper armor and the flame lengthens the amount of distance on the hyper combo. This attack cancels out all projectile attacks and can even cancel out high priority hyper combos like C.Viper's Emergency Combination.

Soul Explosion (Dp + AA) (285,000)

Nightmare will charge Soul Edge with negative energy and do a lance stab with the sword, large amounts of dark energy flying around the sword as he does so, causing a large amount of combo damage.

Soul Destroyer (Down + Down + AA) (280,000)

A counter hyper combo, Nightmare will charge up a very large amount of energy within his body. If the opponent attacks him as he does so, he'll expel the energy outward in a shockwave, sending the opponent flying and causing a wall bounce.

Level 3: Critical Finish (Qcb + AA) (450,000)

Nightmare's Critical Finish from  is now his level 3 Hyper combo. The attack begins with an uppercut sword slash. If the attack connects with the opponent, Nightmare will throw his sword up into the air, which will air combo the opponent before bringing them back down into the ground. Soul Edge will then cause a giant area of dark energy to appear around the opponent as it combos them and explodes, ending the hyper combo.

Victory Pose:

Nightmare will take the Soul Edge in both hands, then raising it above his head, the sword shooting off Red Lightning from its tip into the air.

Victory Quotes:

#1: The Nightmare…will NEVER END!!

#2: Blood…Darkness…Come Unto Me!!

#3: Your souls…were rather good!

#4: Your Meager Souls are WORTHLESS!!!

#5: The Darkness is everlasting!!

#6: The near!

Against Ryu/Akuma/Wolverine: Warrior…your soul shall surely satisfy me!

Assist Quotes:

Call Partner:



"Tremble in Fear!"

Last Person Switch Out:

"The Darkness is coming for you!!"

Color Scheme:

#1: Dark Blue

#2: Black

#3: Dark Red

#4: Dark Green

#5: Dark Brown

#6: Dark Purple

I hereby give Capcom full rights over this moveset and are welcome to use this in any way/shape/form that they desire.

*Ahem* Well...I've been playing alot of Soul Calibur 4 lately and...well...I was tempted to make a moveset for possibly one of the best and coolest game villains ever, Nightmare from the Soul Calibur . This guy is one of the reasons I hope they expand to Namco vs. Capcom after Street Fighter X Tekken is done, for I'd use a team of Felicia and Nightmare (And Wesker if it's 3 vs 3) and be completely unstoppable! >8D

Anyways...enjoy everyone. :3
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"Tell me again where we're going, lass?"

Mrrsizha chuckled. "I never told you in the first place, Brynjolf." He grunted irritably in response and she shot him a grin over her shoulder. "You'll see."

He exhaled softly, an exasperated not-quite-sigh, but didn't push, and for that Mrrsizha was grateful. She hadn't told Brynjolf their destination for a reason: she didn't think he'd be very happy about it.

The Khajiit's ears perked as they rounded the cliff and she stopped short, holding up a hand. Brynjolf made a questioning sound, stopping just behind her. "Lass?"

"The lantern." Mrrsizha didn't carry a lantern--she didn't need one, even in the blackest of nights--but Brynjolf did, lacking her feline night-vision. Oh, he could see well enough in the dark--any thief worth their salt could--but he preferred not to impair his vision in the wilds, if he could help it. It was all too easy for Skyrim's wildlife to sneak up on you in the dark.

He didn't answer her, but after a moment the light from his lantern dimmed and died. Mrrsizha stayed where she was, watching the area ahead of her for a moment. Good; nobody seemed to have seen it. Distantly, she heard something roar; a dragon, it sounded like, but she hadn't been around many dragons. In any case, it sounded far off.

"Alright. Let's go." The Khajiit dropped into a crouch, hugging the rock wall next to her and staying low in the grass as she headed for their destination.

She heard Brynjolf exhale sharply behind her and a moment later he grabbed her arm, hissing, "The Black-Briar lodge?! Lass, have you lost your mind?"

"Shhh!" Mrrsizha pressed a finger to his lips, glancing towards the lodge. The guards--three of them she could see--didn't seem to have heard him. She hoped they'd been out here for a while; tired, bored guards were the best ones.

"No, I have not lost my mind, Brynjolf." She looked back at him, her eyes glinting in the dark.

He moved her hand. "Then why are you planning to do something that will get us all killed?!"

Mrrsizha sighed softly. "Brynjolf, calm down. I'm not proposing we clean the place out. There's just one small thing I need. Maven probably won't even miss it." She glanced over her shoulder again, nervously. The guards still hadn't moved towards them. "Anyway, even if she does, what can she do to us? She can't send the Brotherhood after us: Fadali would never accept a contract on the Guild. If she tips off the guards, half of them will get killed in the Ratway--the half that we haven't bought." She pursed her lips, ears flicking. "Brynjolf, I'm going in there with or without you. I'd just rather have someone watching my back with all these mercs around, and you're the best."

Brynjolf glared back at her, silent. There was a few moments of tense silence, and Mrrsizha flicked an ear back towards the lodge. Finally, he closed his eyes and let out a harsh breath thought his nose.

"Very well, lass." He opened his eyes to give her a critical look. "But I want it known that I did not approve of this."

"Yes, yes." She waved a hand absently, turning back towards the lodge. "You're just following orders, and so on. Now hush." She licked her lips, watching the guards; two at the front door, one patrolling the general perimeter of the lodge. No trouble for a pair of master thieves, but Mrrsizha expected there were more. Probably inside the lodge, if she had to guess.

"Thought Maven had some prized white stallion here," Brynjolf murmured after a moment. Mrrsizha glanced towards the stables, even though she knew very well what he meant. The horses she could see were fine beasts--she supposed--but not the prize Brynjolf was talking about.

"Mm. Yes, she did. Frost." The Khajiit glanced back towards the lodge, watching the patrolling guard.


"Yes. Did. Past-tense." Mentally, she counted. "Last I heard, he belonged to some Breton. Louis Letrush, or some such name. I can never keep human names straight."

Brynjolf was quiet for a moment, and Mrrsizha could almost hear him thinking. She was pretty certain he was giving her a disapproving look. "...and how did he come across such a fine animal, I wonder? I can't imagine Maven was eager to sell."

"Don't know. But her fetcher of a son was, before he was locked up." One-hundred-and-thirty-seven seconds to walk around the lodge, give or take a few for the occasional delay. Plenty of time. "Luckily, Louis ran into a lovely Khajiit maiden who was just thrilled to offer her help acquiring the beast, as she goes out of her way to help people whenever possible...that's what I heard, anyway."

Brynjolf groaned. "And she would never do something that she knew would piss off the most powerful woman in Riften simply because she didn't like her, I suppose."

"Naturally not. That would be immoral."

He sighed. "Lass, you're giving me grey hairs."

"Nonsense. Your hair is just as red as it was yesterday, don't give me that."

She could almost feel him rolling his eyes behind her. Brynjolf was a thief, yes, but he was more cautious than her, and he certainly wasn't the type to approve of her baiting Maven...even if Mrrsizha had been careful to make sure Maven wouldn't be able to trace the theft of her horse back to the Guild. The Khajiit tried not to roll her eyes back at him, turning her attention back to the job at hand. She tensed, taking a deep breath. "There's a door to the basement around the right side."

"Aye, lass."

Mrrsizha was about to make a dash for the back door when she heard the snap and cut of leather through air above them; the Khajiit cast her eyes upwards and saw what it was an instant before she heard it.

"Yol...toor SHUL!"

She hissed shrilly as the dragon's fire blinded her, shoving herself back against Brynjolf; the dragon hadn't noticed them, though, but was focused on the guards. Mrrsizha was aware of the screaming of horses and men and the pungent scent of burning flesh, but she was still too blinded from the dragon fire to see anything.  Above the racket, she heard a hoarse, deep, loud laugh, and wind buffeted the two thieves as the dragon flew off.

She snarled, finally looking up as her vision began to clear, squinting into the night; the dragon had left a wide swath of flame in front of the lodge, and caught the patrolling guard in it; the other two had turned their attention from the road and to the sky as it circled around for a second attack, and after a moment more mercenaries appeared in the lodge's doorway, drawn by the chaos.

This time, the dragon swooped in for a landing, the ground shuddering when it did. It snapped up one of the mercenaries immediately, shaking its head and tossing him aside before the others had even begun to react.

"Now! While they're distracted!" Mrrsizha winced, nodding sharply before darting off towards the back door, with Brynjolf at her heels. It wasn't locked, and the two of them disappeared inside before the dragon had even taken off again.

It was quiet inside the house, the only sounds coming from the battle outside: screams and roaring and the crackle of fire. Mrrsizha growled, rubbing at her eyes. "Bleeding dragons and their bleeding fire."

"Are you alright?" Brynjolf's hand brushed across her shoulders gently and Mrrsizha nodded.

"Eyes just sting a bit. Nothing major." She looked up at the floor above them, ears pricking. "Luckily, I think the damn lizard got everyone outside."

"Aye, and if we hurry we can even get what you're here for before it burns the place down," Brynjolf answered wryly.

Mrrsizha chuckled, waving off his concern. "I think those mercs can take him. Dragons aren't stupid; if he gets hurt, he'll leave."

Brynjolf didn't ask how she knew, and she didn't elaborate, lifting her muzzle. Eyes half closed, she took a few long, deep breaths through her nose. The scent of burning from outside threw her off, but she could still filter it out, mostly. The strongest scent she got was male, human and leather and nervous excitement: that was Brynjolf. She knew his scent. Aside from him and the ever-present smell of leather-nightshade-Khajiit-sweet--herself--she didn't smell anyone else. Not strong enough to come from someone actually present, anyway. Good.

"Alright. It's clear, for now. Come on." The Khajiit stood up straight, heading upstairs in a jog. She briefly lamented having to leave so much behind--there was so much here that she could sell!--but as much as she would have loved to rob Maven Black-Briar blind, she didn't quite want to incur her wrath just yet. Too much trouble.

Someday, she promised the treasures around her, someday.

She cut through the dining room, dimly remembering the layout of the building, and headed for the master bedroom. After a moment, Brynjolf said quietly, "You've been in here before."

"Had to get Frost's lineage papers," Mrrsizha answered simply. She purposely didn't mention that that wasn't all she'd taken, at the time...absently, she noted that Maven had gotten a new kind of silverware. Pity. She'd liked the older kind better, herself.

"Ah!" She let out a breath when she found the master bedroom, glancing around quickly. There were a few sprigs of dried, strong-smelling lavender around the room, and it made her uneasy; it confused her nose, and it sounded quiet outside now. The mercenaries would be back soon.

"So what are we looking for, lass?"

"Gem. Reddish-pink." She glanced back. "The guards'll be back soon."

Brynjolf nodded, wordlessly leaving the room to keep a look-out down the hallway. Mrrsizha snorted lightly in an attempt to clear the lavender from her sinuses, and started rifling through drawers.

Papers, quills, a few sealed pots of ink, some loose coins (Mrrsizha pocketed those)...nothing of much value, certainly not the gem she wanted. She glanced around, her eyes briefly resting on the surfaces in the room. She'd often seen the gems on display, perhaps...

Her eyes landed on a shelf in the corner, mostly populated by gleaming silverware. It was the gleam that had thrown her off; there, amongst a few goblets, sat her prize, floating gently in its case.

The Khajiit sucked in a quiet breath, smiling. "There you are, beautiful." She made her way to the shelf, gently picking up the box. The gem bobbed away from her touch when she ran her finger over it and she smiled. "One more down." She closed the gem's case, tucking it into one of the pouches on her hip and heading back to where Brynjolf waited.

"All clear?" Brynjolf stiffened a little when she spoke, then let out a breath, shooting her a mildly annoyed look.

"You're too quiet, lass. Gave me a fright." He nodded. "So far so good. You have the gem?"

Mrrsizha patted the pouch that held it. "Ready to come home with us, so let's get moving."

They stole back through the lodge without incident, reemerging into the night unnoticed. The dragon had left for good, though a good many of the mercenaries lay dead. That was what had occupied them, it seemed: putting out the fires the dragon had left behind and dealing with the bodies. Mrrsizha smiled, glancing off in the direction the dragon had come from. She gave a little salute to the sky.

With the guards occupied, it was all too easy for the two master thieves to disappear into the Rift's wilds. The dragon's appearance seemed to have frightened all the wildlife into hiding, since the night was quiet and uneventful; they were about halfway back to Riften when Brynjolf finally spoke up.

"So, care to tell me why one gem was worth enough to risk angering Maven Black-Briar?"

Mrrsizha smiled a little to herself. She'd been wondering if he'd ask; he was too curious not to. She stopped, turning towards her second and shielding her eyes while they adjusted to his lantern's light.

She didn't say anything at first, just pulling the gem's case out of her hip pouch. "This is what I was after." She opened it to display its glittering treasure.

Brynjolf narrowed his eyes, unhooking his lantern from his belt and bringing it up for a better look. "Vex has one of these. Keeps a close watch on it." He looked up at her. "What is it?"

"Vex has one? Hm. Guess that explains how she knew about them." Mrrsizha shrugged. "She called them the lost Stones of Barenziah when I brought her my first one. There's supposed to be twenty-four...or twenty-five, I guess, counting hers. Worthless without the whole set." She closed the case, tucking it back into her pouch. "I've been keeping an ear out for them, and I heard Maven might have one."

Brynjolf gave her a look that clearly said he wasn't certain it had been worth the risk. He didn't argue, though, just shaking his head after a moment. "And how many do you have?"

"Nine, counting this one." She smiled, tail tip flicking, and leaning towards him. "And I know where the tenth is..."

Brynjolf groaned, evidently recognizing her look and tone. "Let me guess: it belongs to someone else we shouldn't be stealing from, and you want me to come along to watch your back."

Mrrsizha giggled, turning on her heel to continue back to Riften, and called over her shoulder:

"You'll see!"
Uh. IDK. Was planning to take Brynjolf (lazily) adventuring to finish No Stone Unturned, and this is basically what happened at Black-Briar lodge. It seemed worth writing down.

It was better in my head, though. :T
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Games > Elder Scroll Series > Pre Skyrim
Pairings: Cicero / Future Dragonborn - Listener
Location:  Bravil 188 4E (well before events at Helgen in 4E 201)

Story Status: Complete!
(All Chapters 1 - 6 posted)

Summary:  Tasked with delivering an important message to the Listener Alisanne Dupre in Bravil, a young and cocky Cicero let's curiosity get the best of him.  The Listener's stammering and seemingly meek apprentice Beatriz, he soon learns is but a year his junior.  She is also an "innocent" and not apart of the Dark Brotherhood.  At least not yet according to Alisanne and even though Cicero is ordered, during his short stay to help protect yet keep his distance from her apprentice, he cannot help but bend the rules.  To not just find out why Beatriz holds the Night Mother's interest but his as well.


Warning:  I choked up a little during writing this chapter.  So you may need a tissue too.

His hand upon her cheek told him what was coming more so than his at the moment useless eyes or her stammering word.  Cicero felt then heard her knife drop from his throat to clatter upon the wooden floor.  With it his fear and concerns fell away too.  All that remained was desire and a burning curiosity.  He never thought his first kiss would come to him like this.  But it was welcomed all the same, even though he knew only of her name, the sound of her sweet struggling voice and so very little of her face.  Yet he was content for now to learn the feel and taste of those slender lips.  

Teasing them back his left hand opened and closed.  Unsure where to go till he decided to cautiously rest it upon Beatriz’s hip.  Squeezing gently, silently telling her not to stop.  Encouraged she did not and he felt her stretch to tip toes to wrap her arms over his shoulders.  Dropping his hand from her face, he slipped both of them next to the small of her back.  Pulling her into a tight hug as a new urgency grew within him.  

A small part of it was to wiggle free and make a run for it.  Since if the Listener caught them like this, Cicero was pretty sure he would face serious consequences.  Breaking at least one of the tenets although as of yet technically he was not disobeying his superior.  Or so he reasoned as he gave into the denied and forbidden that was the Listener's, not so innocent after all apprentice.  Beatriz still could not see him, at least not clearly as he could only see so much of her as well.  And when she asked who he was he gave the lie the Listener provided easily.

Regardless the other and larger part of him wanted more.  Not just kissing but to simply get to know her better.  Seemingly meek but full of surprises, he wondered what others she had in store.  Cicero could only hope to deliver more messages to their Mistress or even a contract to bring him back at least once more to Bravil.  To Beatriz but for now Cicero tried to push all worries and daydreams of such things aside.  To focus upon the here and now, Beatriz's lips and the clean and somehow cooling taste of them.  As if she had just munched upon a few carrots for a snack.

When her tongue at last shyly sought and met his Cicero trembled.  It took all his self-control to not rush in like a brute and taste her deeper.  Instead he wanted to feel what she was going to do next.  The slow, careful yet intense kiss alone was more than he ever expected.  At the most he hoped to just share a few words, get her to laugh and leave her with a smile.  

But a hard life taught him the value of keeping the bar low.  Or better still to not expect much from anyone.  Before becoming an assassin and since the bloody moment of his baby sister’s birth Cicero still tried.  He had tried so very hard to be good by hunting to provide coin from pelts and meat upon his family’s table.  All for his baby sister while helping his older brother keep their drunken abusive father in check.  

Also Cicero knew from such an experience that surprises unlike the ones from Beatriz were for the most part unpleasant.  Everything took work and failure could certainly result in despair and death.  Just like how things did not work out for his father but at least now Cicero was here and alive.  He was for the moment happy with just kissing Beatriz and being a part of a new family.  His older brother, Ramiro was better suited to be a father to their baby sister anyways.  

Cicero tried not to think about them or his life before the Dark Brotherhood.  However in moments of calm such as now his older brother’s painful last words haunted him.

“You… he’s dead Cicero.  First Mother and now Father?  As if what you did to her wasn’t-”

“He struck her for laughing!  Not me, HER!  And he was going to hit her again!“  

“Still how could you!”

“I promised!  I promised Mother to keep her safe from harm!”

“Tell him to leave Ramiro!  I told you he is unfit to be around Tullia.  I told you!” Peronella his brother's new wife snipped and looked upon him with utter discust.

Ramiro signed wearily, "You are right Nelly, of course."

Cicero tried to protest, “But brother-“

“I'm sorry Cicero but you must go and never come back.”

When he moved to give his wailing sister one last hug, Peronella snatched her up shrieking, "Leave!  Leave now or I'll summon the guards you filthy murderer!"

"Please just go brother.  We'll take care of her now," Ramiro pleaded as his wife tried to calm Tullia.

"Cic-Cic want Cic," the two year old girl hiccuped between sobs.

Cicero let out a small whimper against Beatriz's lips.  The wails from his baby sister rang in his mind now as they did in his ears then.  The stinging blush which had started upon his pale cheeks spread over his entire face.  Mortified at the loss of control over his emotions the urge to flee from the room rose up swiftly in him again.  


The moment Beatriz felt the Messenger’s lips still, worry bubbled in her stomach.  It felt as if he was fading away as the fire inside of him was dying down.  When he started shaking, gave a small sad sound and tried to pull back she tightened her grip upon the front of his robes.  

“Forgive me Beatriz, I should-“

“Stay,” she whispered and heard him suck in a ragged breath.  She listened as he kept taking one more after another.  Each one seemed to give him some strength.  Yet between upon exhales he still gave a small sound of pain.  As she tried to think of a way to comfort him Beatriz insisted, “P-p-p-please stay.  Don’t la-leave just yet.”

“Really?  You really want me to stay?  To not go?  But if only you-”

“Yes,” she interrupted and pulled him closer.  Resting her cheek and hand upon his chest the hammering of his heart boomed in her ear.

Hugging her about the shoulders he struggled with something and confessed, “But I ruin everything.  I’m a terrible-”

“Sta-stop it!  D-d-don’t even sssay that!” Beatriz winced at the hardness in her tone.  Yet she could not stand him to continue, his self-loathing was so terribly clear.  Shyly she reached to stroke his face and ask him why he would even think that but at his throat she felt the cut.  

“Oh n-no! I … I hur-hurt you!”  She moved to fetch him a healing potion.  He clung tightly to her hand as she pulled him along.  “S-sorry um…”  

“It’s just a scratch.  I’ve been cut worse before,” he sniffed but took the vial offered.  “Still, I thank you.”  

After a time and hearing him set it down empty Beatriz wrapped her arms about his waist.  Pulling him close again, she smiled.  When he snuggled his face into her neck with a sigh it grew.  At the hot tears she felt next it faded.  Leaving her to hold onto him only tighter and worry over what was bothering him.

“You must think I’m a fool.”  He pulled back just enough to press his forehead against hers and sniff wetly.

“F-f-fools d-don’t cry.  They laugh sssilly,” she weakly joked.  

He snorted and did that funny humming chuckle again then teased, “Oh I’ll make you pay for that.”  

“Wa-why?  Whe-when la-laughter tastes better than pa-potion.  It's all-always there to help ease pa-pain, d-don't you know?”  

"I can think of at least one thing that tastes and feels far-far better."

"Oh? Wah-what?"

His lips coaxing hers to part but this time more was his answer.  She felt a deep rumbling groan as her fingers checked then teased over the healed cut at his throat.  Squirming in his arms she felt him slip deeper and demand more.  Sucking back just as hard and eager she pressed closer as he moaned happily back.  He felt and even tasted so very good.   Trembling, Beatriz savored the sweet and spiciness to his kisses.  At least until the apprehension of their Mistress possibly finding them finally set in.

"W-what if-"

"I don't care.  Mistress said I should only try not to be seen by you.  It’s dark now is it not?"  His muffled yet playful words had caused something low and deep in her stomach to flip-flop about.  His hands sliding to hips to cup her bottom set it wild.  At her shocked gasp into his mouth he jerked them back to her hips.  He even went so far to break the kiss to squeak, "Um Sorry! I-oh!  Oh my!  You’re just as bad!"

Letting him know what he had done was more than welcome, she had settled for action rather than struggle with words.  Quickly she ran her hands down his chest, sides and promptly squeezed his ass right back.  “Shhh or sh-she wa-will hear us,” Beatriz giggled, grasped her hands about his waist to pull him close and kissed him again before he could get any louder.  

"You're so... unexpected... but... I like that!  I really do," he mumbled out between soft and slow pecks.  Pulling her down to sit in his lap on the closest chair they could find.  He tucked an arm under her primly closed knees as his other hugged along her back to keep her upon it.  

Beatriz relaxed when he kept his hands where they were at.  Besides what happened earlier this boy seemed respectful and in no rush to take things too far.  Instead he worked a trail of small light kisses along her jaw to her ear.  When he started to nibble upon it Beatriz whimpered at finding out how very sensitive they were.  How good it felt till she remembered he had yet to get to and puzzle over the tiny point to it.  

"Mmm like that eh?"

She did but nervously started to squirm and when that did not work she spoke up. "Kah-kiss me, again."

She would have asked but always struggled over pronouncing the word please or any word that started with that particular letter the most.  His soft chuckle tickled her ear and she swore she could feel him grinning as he whispered, "If that is your wish... then I'll oblige."

His voice.  His taste.  Sweet divines, help me.  I want him forever and always.

Or so she naively thought and let loose another nervous yet happy laugh.  One he joined in on until he did as he was told.  His gasps echoing hers as their hands once again started to wander.  Mostly to dive in one another's hair or stroke tenderly a cheek, chin or ear.


The more time passed, the more Cicero's fingers tingled the very thought slipping lower.  For now his right hand had moved from her knees to massage her left shoulder as his other teasing up and down her back.  Holding his breath he debated over whether or not to dare brush his palm lightly over the rise of her modest breast.  When she broke the kiss only to moan and catch her breath, Cicero with a sigh settled for keeping it where it was.  His greater wish was to see her face, to watch carefully and know the moment he was taking it too far so he could stop.  

The opening of the room's door suddenly made the wish moot.  In their Mistress’s eyes, he had indeed taken it too far.  The dally with the Listener's Apprentice was coming to an end.  And the Listener for the Dark Brotherhood was not in the least bit amused from the sounds of things.  

Actually it was the lack thereof for she made none, at least at first.  Probably in utter shock over how Cicero did not bother to flinch but instead stubbornly refused to stop what he was doing to her apprentice.  Reasoning he was going to probably be killed for this, Cicero just simply closed his eyes tighter, stole one more kiss from Beatriz and awaited hopefully a swift death.

His dearest Beatriz however had other plans.  She sprang up and out of his lap moments later as if he just cast a flame cloak spell.  Shielding her face too from the bright light that spilled in from the hallway she scrambled to get between them and promptly spilled her guts.  Surprisingly and fortunately she did not stammer much.  

"M-mistress!  I made him do it!  I swear!  P-p-please don't pun-punish him!  I blew out the candles, sa-pa-prised him, p-put a knife to his throat.  Told him to-to explain himself, he said he was your m-messenger and-"

"That is enough Beatriz.   Yet from the look of things he did not appear upon my arrival terribly put out by your demand."  The Listener's voice was utterly calm and collected as Cicero jumped to stand.  Her hands folded behind her back as she slowly made her way around the two of them.

Cicero felt terrible as he heard Beatriz start to cry but dared not to look up.  He only risked taking her hand as it bumped his.  And he wanted to smile in bittersweet joy when she squeezed it back and struggled to collect herself.

"D-don't pun-pun-p-punish him!  M-mis-misss-tress p-please."  

She kept on speaking as the Listener just remained silent as the Night Mother to the rest of her children.  Every word she uttered next was choked out.  Cicero thought it must have only brought Beatriz more pain and embarrassment.  Yet she would not stop.  

And it was all done for him, the lowliest of assassins, brought into the fold for killing his drunken father.  Who raged and understandably went mad at what his middle son had done.  But Cicero had to do it.  He always did what he was told and for mother always.  He had to save his dearest sister, especially since his mother told him that everything would be all right.  So as told he cut her out.  

“Good boy Cicero.  My good boy.  You did the right thing.  I’m so proud of you.  So very-very proud of… my brave boy!  She’s so…”

“Mother?  Mother no!  No!  You said-you said everything would be... Oh Mother!  No please!  NO! Don't go!”

Pushing the painful memories of his mother’s last words and the anguish came next; Cicero finally dared to meet the Listeners eyes.  Scowling and tightening his grip upon her apprentice’s hand he whispered, "Please no more, sweetest Beatriz.  Wipe away those tears for I think our Mistress has listened enough and understands perfectly.  I thank you but trouble yourself no further upon me, for I do not deserve it."

But Beatriz would not listen.  She only tried again and sobbed harder as her Mistress slowly pried her fingers loose from his.  All the while she shushed softly and gently then pulled her apprentice away to the kitchen.

Cicero could not even bear to look now and see the pain which probably contorted Beatriz’s flushed wet face.  Instead he kept his head low.  Did not even need to be told to remain and stood right there not moving one inch as the door closed behind them.  The darkness enfolded around him once again.  Only this time it gave no comfort.  For this time he was now alone.… <--Chapter Two 

Chapter Four -->…

Please let me know via note of any unclear points, transitions problems from flash backs, run-on sentences (yes like this one) and typos in general.

Who is Beatriz? 
Beth future Listener to the Dark Brotherhood and Dovahkiin who's story will continue on in 
Death and Madness -->…

Huh? What! 
As she crossed the border into Skyrim with her father, he suggested out of caution she change her name. 

I'm confused...
This story takes place well before Helgen when Beth and Cicero were teenagers.

I must profess my deepest thanks to Heiwako :iconheiwako: for feedback on this chapter but also suggesting the name of Beatriz to help further support why Beth and Cicero unknowingly reunite in Skyrim. :)

Cover art by my dearest friend :iconmakiloomis: Makiloomis!… Be sure to check out her other artwork and give her lots and lots of love! <3

Cicero and other related Elder Scrolls stories, characters and games is Bethsesda's
Beth aka Beatriz and Story is mine. ;)
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As the young blond traced small details onto her map, she wiped a bit of sweat from her brow. For early fall, it sure was hot... Or perhaps that was just the heat of the furnace getting to her? Sighing, Fleet dropped her quill and stood up, dragging her hand through her short, fluffy hair. The day had been long, and the evidence of this was all over her body- Dirty clothes, a small smudge of coal dust on her left cheek... Not to mention the fact that her hands were stained with ink. But all the dirt, all of that dust had been worth it. It was always worth it. Sitting back down again, she didn't even notice the sun setting as she her mind floated in the lala land that most refer to as reverie. Nor did she notice the tall shadow striding towards her house, a diamond block in hand.

No, Fleet was far too lost in her thoughts to even realize that she'd left the door open. Too busy thinking about how she dove down into that cave everyday, and always hauled back such a huge load. Today was the day she'd actually done something a little different. Fleet had traveled far in order to find a new cave, and add to her map. The thought of fresh air just seemed great, really. And it was- Until she'd seen that tall ass stilty creature running around with a sand block in it's hand. She didn't even know how lucky she was that it hadn't noticed that she'd seen it... Or so she thought. She'd taken off too soon to even pay attention to what it was, dropping the diamond block she'd just crafted in the process. That had absolutely sucked. There were so many things she could've done with that diamond...

Fleet leaned back in her chair, letting out a yawn that turned into a startled yelp as the door slammed, jumping up a little. The jump caused her chair to scoot back a little and then fall over. Her eyes widened as the shadow creature from before stared down at her, just... Staring back. Both were frozen. The Enderman because it was being stared at, and the human because she was scared as NETHER. This fear spiked as Fleet's eyes drifted to the diamond block it was holding. She recognized that block. Did this thing follow her? She looked back at the Enderman, letting out yet another yelp as it seemed to have gotten closer, leaned in closer. Why in the Nether had it followed her all that way? And more importantly, it seemed hostile. Kinda. So if it was following her that whole way, it would've had a chance to kill her any time it wanted.

So, why didn't it? As she continued staring at the creature, she shuddered. That whispering... It was terrifying. Like listening to a ghost or something. Maybe it was a ghost? Gulping, she struggled not to blink. And failed. The Enderman took this chance to kneel down and lean in closer, it's long, gangly limbs dragging on the floor for quite a length. When Fleet opened her eyes again, she wasn't surprised that it was closer... But she still whimpered anyway. Was she going to die today? So, lying there upside down with her feet in the air, she was going to die. Sitting in a chair upside down. Whatever happened to creepers just exploding and sending your limbs flying? Or being arrowed to death? Since when did monsters act so personal when they killed you? Questions like these flooded the teen's mind as her heart pounded...

It was an interesting thing, being terrified. It was almost like being in love. Your heart felt like it was gonna explode in your chest, your emotions ran rampant, you felt like you were about to cry, and you're afraid to speak. They both sent adrenaline pumping through your veins. Was there really even a difference? The Enderman stared down at her, vaguely wondering when the girl was gonna give him a chance to move again. He didn't have long to wait- She shut her eyes to squeeze the tears away. He moved in closer, closer... Until his face was an inch from hers. Her eyes popped open, and the tears began to flow. Why keep from crying? She was going to die anyway... Maybe it was best to let her tear ducts have their way?

Unable to move, the Enderman merely stared at her with his glowing green eyes. The air felt tight. Fleet knew that if she closed her eyes one more time, she would die immediately. It would eat her, or something. The Enderman, of course, had other plans. Not that Fleet knew anything about them. In her pocket, her clock ticked. Her heart beat erratically when compared to the ticking. Ticking, thumping, inaudible whispers. Each second of it seemed to last an hour. Her eyes began to feel dry, and the tears made her eyelids feel a little crusty.

Just one blink, it would make it better... Wouldn't it? But just one blink... And she'd die, wouldn't she? But it didn't matter. No matter what, she'd die. It wasn't like she could attack... If she moved her gaze from this strange, tall shadow for even a second to pull out her sword, she'd still die. Fleet's eyelids began to droop, and the Enderman's eyes brightened a little. Suddenly, the girl was just... So... Tired. She just wanted to shut her eyes. There was nothing she could do now. No matter what, if she moved her eyes from the gangly beast at all, she'd die. Quietly, one last tear slipped from her left eye as they both closed for what she thought was forever.
Inspired by Minecraft's Enderman, obviously. xD
There will be two alternate endings to this. One is based on how a Herobrine and a creeper are made. :3
However, I'll take requests for endings... So I'll upload all ending requests. :3
God, I'm so uncreative with names. This Fleet is in no way related to my Ribbon Eel Girl Fleet. xD
Ending- Gone Forever [link]
Alternate Ending- Pity the Taken [link]
Romance Ending- Didn't mean to scare you, oops [link]

I love R&R~ It brings improvement, I think. :3
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Games > Elder Scroll Series > Pre Skyrim
Pairings: Cicero / Future Dragonborn - Listener
Location:  Bravil 188 4E (well before events at Helgen in 4E 201)

Story Status: Complete!
(All Chapters 1 - 6 posted)

Summary:  Tasked with delivering an important message to the Listener Alisanne Dupre in Bravil, a young and cocky Cicero let's curiosity get the best of him.  The Listener's stammering and seemingly meek apprentice Beatriz, he soon learns is but a year his junior.  She is also an "innocent" and not apart of the Dark Brotherhood.  At least not yet according to Alisanne and even though Cicero is ordered, during his short stay to help protect yet keep his distance from her apprentice, he cannot help but bend the rules.  To not just find out why Beatriz holds the Night Mother's interest but his as well.


Warning:  Again I choked up a little during writing this chapter.  So you may need a tissue too.

The waiting and wondering what was going to happen next was the worst part.  Cicero kept his eyes to the floor in shame.  It festered inside of him over what happened.  Mentally he berated himself to pass the time.  All the while he absently wiggled his toes inside his beat up, simple black, leather boots.  They just started to hurt when the Listener returned alone.  Only then did he cautiously meet her jaded eyes.  Wanting to ask if Beatriz was feeling better but what he saw silenced him.

“You have greatly disappointed me and given what we do…” she let the chilling warning remain unspoken.  To let his imagination go wild and ponder over just how stupid he was to think he could get away with even bending the rules.  

“Come,” the Listener turned away and led them back to her office.  As they made their way up she explained, “I sent Beatriz home.  You will stay away from her and may only see her by my say so.  You will still be expected to protect her but as needed only.  Do you fully understand now?”

“Yes Mistress,” Cicero meekly promised.  A part of him wanted to ask for how long but thought better of it.  Instead he took comfort that the Listener was at least permitting him to lend aid to Beatriz like any Brother or Sister.  For what reason again he wanted to ask but dared not press his luck.

“Good,” She sighed out, sat down took out another sheet of parchment and started writing.  Absently she rubbed at her wrinkled brow as she scratched away with the quill.  Since Cicero was not told to sit down he remained standing respectfully and ignored his aching feet.  It was not until Mistress Dupre sealed the new letter with wax, collected the first did she speak to him again.

“Now take these both to Rasha.  The newest one outlines to your Speaker the… let’s call it punishment over what has happened today.  Oh but do not look so scared Cicero.”  Mistress Dupre muttered in frustration then added, “The Night Mother likes you for some dammed reason.”  Her face screwed up as if she did not want to say what came next.  “She wants you to know she admires your,” the Listener let out a growl then continued, “dedication.  In time you will serve her even more closely.  Help exert her will and uphold her ways.  But know this Cicero, that when that time comes all your foolishness will and must come to an end.”

As a future Listener perhaps?  Humm… no wonder Mistress is not happy.  Not happy at all.

He speculated and liked that theory very much.  Giving a short and serious nod Cicero inquired, “Is there anything else, Mistress?”

“Just one more thing who was Didiah?”

A shiver ran through him as his heart clenched at the name.  Feeling clammy and a little ill as the images of what he had done bombarded him.  The feel of reaching in to pull life from death, one sacrificing scream gave way to weak and confused cries.  Weaving he braced himself up by holding to the back of the seat he took earlier.  Numbly he worked out, “Um… Why?  Why do you want to know of her?”

The Listener leaned back in her chair, crossed her arms and offered evenly, “Our Unholy Matron mentioned her.”

“Oh?”  Cicero blanched and shivered as the Listener noticed.  Thankfully she did not press and just waited.  Looking about he tried to remain calm.  

“She… she was my mother,” he managed to get out.  And then, in the quietest of voices he told the Listener everything.  To give her an idea on how wonderful it was to have a family and especially a mother again.  

“My sister would not come into this world.  My family were simple farmers, too poor for a midwife.  Too far away from town for any healer to come and my… narrow minded and ignorant Father never allowed any of us to learn magic.  Selfless, gentle and sweet my… my dearest mother told me to not let the child die.  There was so much blood but well… after swaddling my new sister I tried to help my mother next.  But it was of no use.  So I did what I could to make her presentable for when father and brother returned.  Cleaned everything up, they were still displeased.”  Cicero paused to give a pained and weak smile.  “But I did as I was told.  What my mother wanted and so my sister did not die.”

With a pained look Mistress Dupre gently asked, “How... how old where you?”

“Almost thirteen Mistress, my sister was most unexpected.  Mother too old really to be having more but she was so very happy about it.  Even in the end before... before leaving she held her.  Then Father did not take Mother’s death well at all.  No, not at all…”  Trailing off Cicero could not hold the facade of cheer anymore.  His face pinched in pain as he forced himself to continue.  

“He was never happy after what I had to do.  He would get drunk at times and hurt me for it.  Oh!  But I don’t blame him for that.  I don’t!  But when he tried to hurt my dearest sister I… well I promised my mother.”  Cicero swallowed hard and it took everything in him not to cry.  “I vowed to never let my sister come to harm!  He tried to but I stopped him.  I may have gone too far.  I didn’t mean to and well… at least in the end one must look at it this way, he will never hurt her… ever.”  

He took a few breaths and thought back to how good it felt being held by Beatriz in the dark.  How she told him to not go but stay.  True she did not know any of this but someday he promised himself to tell her and prayed she would understand.  It felt good to let it out in a strange way even now, to the Listener.  

Regaining control Cicero felt a small smile return and finished with, “My brother Ramiro disagreed upon how I handled the problem,” he paused, his face twisted in rage and he spat.  “But then his new wife… Petronella did not help!  Dammed Nelly!  Went so far to tell him I should never ever return!  To never ever see my dearest sister Tullia again!”  Sucking in a breath then letting it out Cicero stuffed away the anger once again.  Cheerfully he next reassured, “Oh but that is then and this is now.  They take care of her now you see?  Since I am here and obviously cannot.  But all is well because I have a new family and hope to serve and keep you all so very well as if you were my mother or sister.”

With a shaking hand slipping over her mouth from under it  Mistress Dupre whispered, “That… that explains everything.  Why she has chosen you.”  Dropping her hand next, she snapped out of the dazed expression she was wearing and in a soft tone ordered, “You’re dismissed.  And please, stay safe Cicero.”

Cicero looked her over in confusion at her words.  Noticing the shadows under his Mistress's eyes curbed his excitement over how she had just said he was chosen by the Night Mother.  Genuinely concerned, he hesitated from leaving and worked up the courage to say, “Listener?  Are you not feeling well?  Is there anything that you need?  Anything I may fetch or do for you?”

Mistress Dupre gave a little laugh.  Cicero heard the force and nervousness in it as her thumbs circled one another.  He was pretty certain she was talking to the Night Mother when she mumbled, “My even now he does it!  A good match already too if...”  Finally meeting his eyes she answered, “No I’m sure everything will be fine.  Once this matter with the dealers is finished and we can reestablish what we have lost recently, I will sleep easier.  Thank you Cicero.”

He nodded and moved to leave but paused once again.  “I have no right to request anything of you but if I may...”

Turning away from him and trying to collect herself, she gave a thick and stuffy chuckle.  “Given that sting my little bee has put upon your neck, I’m feeling generous. Ask.”

“I was wondering if any punishments that you would deem to befall Beatriz over what happened, I ask you give to me instead, please.”

“No need, no punishment.”  Reaching the small window and looking out it she ordered, “Now go.”

“But Mistress, there is just one more thing you should know of.”

Straightening her spine and turning back to him she cocked a brow at him but still grinned and shook her head slowly.  “You’re really starting to push your luck again boy.  It’s best you begin your journey back to Cheydinhal.”

Stepping forward Cicero got to the point.  “Go I shall but I believe you would wish to know why Beatriz put that mark there.”

“Oh besides you spying on her from the shadows?”

Cicero blushed, rubbed at his throat and pointed out, “Well yes there was that but actually she thought I was sent by someone to hurt her or do maybe more.  Someone dressed as I.  A woman, a Nord and by what name she did not say but did say it was about two weeks ago.”

The Listener said nothing.  Did not move or bat an eye.  The humor only drained from them to nothing.  Impenetrable as the Void and prudently, Cicero took a few cautious steps back.  At one point she looked about to blow.  Instead his Mistress came back from where ever her mind went but only a little.  Her voice was too detached and terribly collected.  It was as if the Night Mother herself stood before him.

“Anything else, Cicero?”

“No, I’ve told you all that I know.”  

Tilting her head to the side as if to listen, Mistress Dupre dutifully repeated the orders given to her by the Night Mother, “Go to the Lady Luck Statue and retrieve our sister Astrid.  Tell her to return here with you.”

Opening the door Cicero gave a nod, “As you wish and if she refuses Listener?”

“Then you must kill her but kill the Bard first.”… <--Chapter Three

Chapter Five-->…

Please let me know via note of any unclear points, transitions problems from flash backs, run-on sentences (yes like this one) and typos in general.

Who is Beatriz?
Beth future Listener to the Dark Brotherhood and Dovahkiin who's story will continue on in
Death and Madness -->…

Huh? What!
As she crossed the border into Skyrim it was suggested out of caution she change her name.

I'm confused...
This story takes place well before Helgen when Beth and Cicero were teenagers.

I must profess my deepest thanks to Heiwako :iconheiwako: for feedback on this chapter but also suggesting the name of Beatriz to help further support why Beth and Cicero unknowingly reunite in Skyrim. :)

Cover art by my dearest friend :iconmakiloomis: Makiloomis!… Be sure to check out her other artwork and give her lots and lots of love! <3

Cicero and other related Elder Scrolls stories, characters and games is Bethsesda's
Beth aka Beatriz and Story is mine. ;)

Add a Comment:
No comments have been added yet.

Ellie, revisited.

    This is the story: a girl came and went with a train whistle, the galaxy broke, and somewhere between a decaying church and white walls, I fell in love.

    That is a mess. I know it's a mess, and that's really only the story, but that's not the truth. The truth of what happened is one big ball of near nothingness and half forgotten could-be-truths. I don't want to remember. I have to remember.

    This is not a love story. This is a story about a girl with black hair and cracked fingernails and these are words I have taken from her skin, words that haunt me and words that thrill me. But more than anything, these are words for her, the unbreakable shattered girl.

* * * *

    It is May 25th, 5:56 a.m.; I watched sunrise with a pounding heart. The light spilled over the train ahead of me, the 6 a.m. Freight, and I felt that crack in the universe right between the sunlight and the dark, and part of me imagined Apollo pulling the sun over his shoulder. It's in those few seconds that you look at the ground under your feet and you remember the secret agreement you have with the earth. I could feel the gravel through the worn soles of my running shoes.

    I was just about to turn around. The train was just about gone, the sun almost up, and my brain began to shift into full awareness. Out of the corner of my eye, I swear that I saw something coiled inside the morning fog. A flash of black, biting pale skin, and then nothing. I put my headphones back in my ears and ran home. It was a morning I wouldn't bother to remember.

    By 8:05, the morning was full, the last of the sunrise almost over- I watched it from the window of my classroom. The last day of my sophomore year. Our English teacher had written “Have an Excellent Summer” on the whiteboard in slick cursive, and he smiled at me when he handed me my final exam. The paper was

    “You have until nine twenty-five,” Mr. Ramsey said as he sat down. “Go.”

    Then there was the tapping. Pens and pencils hitting the desks, shoes, lips, and the wind pushed against the screen; the window was open. My hair blew over my shoulder.

    I signed the bottom of my long response essay with a steady hand, and I stared it for a while, studying my own name as the ink dried. Josephine Harriot. I didn't dot the i's; I never do. Mr. Ramsey nodded at me when I turned it in, and I was the first one out of the classroom and the first person in the parking lot. There was a heavy sort of silence. I climbed into the bed of my neighbor’s truck and put my headphones back in.

    By the time Carter got out of class, I was almost asleep. He hit his palm against the rusty side and motioned for me to get in. His music was up all the way. It always was, and I thought that fit Carter, because he was silent but he was full of words. He was a quiet paragraph. Something you'd read over and not remember for years later, and then you wish you would have remembered it better. If I were to have a best friend, it would be Carter, because he's quiet and soft and the most human person I'd ever known.

    We didn't talk a whole lot on the way back. He rolled down the windows in his beat up truck and I stuck my hand out, and he light up a cigarette to pass the time. His smoke rolled over to me. I didn't know the band that was playing, but I never did. Carter's music is comfortable; it never prods too deeply into your heart. It's good driving music. The music got mixed with the oncoming wind and my hair, and for a moment I felt as if I were in the eye of a tornado.

    “Do you work tonight?” I asked him when he pulled into his driveway.



    “Midnight walk?”

    I smiled and closed his door. “Yeah.”

    I never mean to fall asleep. It happens so easily. I never mean to dream, either, but I don't think that anyone does. They say people can't remember their dreams, not fully, but I think that's wrong, because beginning with that night, I remembered every single one. Those images stood rooted in the base of my skull. I still feel them.

    My sheets were tangled around my ankles when I awoke- I sat tracing the shadows on my mattress for a while and tried to piece together the fragments of my dream.

    There was fog. A morning sky, opening up like the palm of a rose. The clouds were iridescent; they shone and it hurt my eyes, but I didn't look away. I wanted to turn away. Something in the air was hot and wet, like the sidewalk after summer rain, and it lodged itself in my throat. My lungs quivered.

    A flash of black, elongated in the pale sun. It seemed to stretch for miles. I thought I felt it brush against me. I could make out a wisp of porcelain, something doll-like. There was nothing but a mash of colors, black and white, yin and yang, and then there was nothing, only the train. Only the noise.

    But I woke up with my heart racing and a fine layer of sweat over my chest.

    Carter was tapping on my window. The silhouette of his head was cast onto my curtain. I pulled on a fresh shirt and grabbed a water bottle, locked my bedroom door and slipped out my house through the window, leaving it open a crack.

    The air was still. Our town was silent, the calm buzz of the street lights the only noise as we cut down an alley. Carter's arm brushed against mine. In the dull light, the glow from the end of his cigarette looked like the light at the end of a tunnel.

    We walked slowly. Carter's steps were absolutely silent, somehow, quiet amongst the hum of misquotes and burned out porch lights. At night, our town was beautiful, but only just. The sidewalk looked the color of the moon. The usual noise that bumped against the old houses was hushed, replaced with the steady pull of the wind and occasional dog bark. At midnight, our town looked so ordinary.

    As it was right now, the sound that stuck to me was the crackle and sigh of Carter's cigarette. I imagined his ask making a trail behind us. We could always find out way back home.

    We were walking on my usual running path. The grass was pale but not quite dead, and it thinned into just dirt the closer we came to the railroad. Half hidden among the trees and brush, and abandoned church stood white against the night. Our footsteps became the loudest thing around us. I always took comfort in that.

    Carter put his cigarette out under his foot.    

    “Come'n,” he said.

    It was the first thing he'd said all night. I followed him through the broken window in the back. Carter helped me jump through and picked a leaf out of my hair, catching a few strands between his fingers.

    There is not a correct word to describe how Carter looked around the room. His eyes were soft and his lips parted; at peace but with something harsh clinging to his chest. I don't know why Cater loved that church so much, but he really did; he loved it with all his heart. I didn't know it then, but, later, I would come to fall in love with the cracked plaster and the smell of mold and the dusty statues. As it was right then, I let my hand rest on the back of a pew. Carter pulled a bowl from his pocket, packed it, and started smoking, calm and sleepy eyed.

    The smoke made a sort veil over his features. When he offered it to me I took it. A semi-sweet taste filled my mouth, bit into my lungs. After a while we sat down, leaning side by side against the pedestal where a statue of the baby Jesus sat. Our knees touched. Carter's skin was warm, warmer than the early summer night, and I felt the meaning of that grow in area until it filled the room. We shared a cigarette.

    “Happy summer,” Carter mumbled.

    “Happy summer.”

    It was stiflingly quiet after that. Carter started to hum to fill the void. His voice was deep and far away, and I stared at his hands, contrasted sharply against the dirty wood floor.

    And then he stopped; not gradually, but he swallowed the verse on his tongue, turning his head up towards the ceiling.


    “Shh. Listen.”

    I did. Above us, the wood creaked and groaned. Dust fell from the railings. Someone was walking upstairs. At first, I tried to tell myself that it was an animal; a raccoon, maybe, that had come in through the broken window. Carter got up and I did the same.  

    Back past the statue of Jesus and the one of Virgin Mary, there was a door that had remained closed for years, and I stood gazing at the line in the dust from where the ajar door had pushed it over. My heart started to climb to my mouth.

    Let's go back. Something I didn't say, but something I really wanted to.

    Carter put his hand on the knob. There was a muted tune coming from the top of the staircase, like some kind of muffled lullaby. I could see the beads of sweat on Carter's arm. The air was warm, and I think I started to choke on it all (the dust, he smoke, the crumbling pews behind me). Carter's palm was slick against the metal. I swear that I heard the two collide– his skin and the doorknob– and there was a burst of energy as the atoms swarmed, angry from the disturbance. It was the kind of moment that hung in the balance of life.

    One turn– a sound like a nuclear bomb– and the tune went silent. Scuttering, then, like one of a small animal.

    “Do you believe in ghosts?” Carter asked.

    This is how Carter communicated; he would ask questions through a series of different scattered ones. In the end, you never really knew what he wanted to ask, but you got the feeling that he got his answer.

    “I don't know. You?”

    We were quiet again for a spell. Then Carter turned the knock all the way. The creak was echoing, slow and dramatic, like something out of a horror show. Carter whispered that they should really oil the knob; I didn't know who he meant by “they”, and I never found out.

    It was I that took the first step. The air around e tasted sweeter, somehow, on the staircase. Like strawberries- that's something that I never forgot. It shoved its way down my throat. I still wake up choking on it. That air trapped me.

    By the time I made it up to the second floor, I was sweating. It was humid and dusty, like that of an attic, and it kind of stuck to you like another skin.

    I thought I had hit a wall, but when I looked down I saw, instead, a stack of books. Carter came up behind me and pulled out a zippo. The light was dim and flickering. I could hardly see the curtains blowing against the wind– and I almost missed the face right beside the window.

    The lighter coughed and then went out. I could hear three people breathing, three sets of lungs crying, and that's what made my heart falter; I found Carter's hand in the dark. Our atoms collided, and for that I am eternally grateful.

i'm keeping the main plot, but changing it. i couldn't understand why i didn't like the way it turned out last time; and then i realized i wrote it wrong. i was trying to pour my heart into a novel i didn't fully understand. it was too innocent in a sweet way, and that's not how i write. i'm doing it the Phyllis way now. i hope it turns out okay. 

i can't believe this got a DD. thank you :heart: this is a greatgreat day. 
:rose: :rose: & thank you for the suggestion neurotype 
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As soon as he stepped into the open field, he slung the minesweeper from his shoulder and pointed its nose to the ground.  It was old, worn and heavy, and old and rough, calloused and breaking, and old.  The metal between his hands was cold and chilled his fingers.  If he was not careful he could step on the very mines he was trying to find.  They would have to pick up the pieces of his body and to send the tags home where his wife would cry and hold his son and daughter close with nothing to show them of their father but a piece of metal engraved with "Ajeet Singh".

One sweep, than another.

This war had taught him to never trust open spaces.  Open spaces were where the mines were planted, where Prets lay in wait.  France was green and damp just like the uniform he wore.  It had been days since he was separated from his unit, and now the Allies were breathing on his neck, searching for POW’s, searching for the enemy of which he was one.  He wasn’t armed now.  After the retreat from the landings, he had lost his rifle, as much as he was willing to go to war, carrying such a weapon never felt right in his hands.

Another sweep, and nothing.

The metal disc ran through the grass like a terrified rodent.  His boots sunk into the Norman sod, the stalks of vegetation splitting around his feet.  He longed for the sand and mud of Lahore.  This mud was different, murky, soaking, rotting like a bad fruit; he longed for the hard cracked earth, the earth that smelled of sweet dust and the soft under-pelt of tanned animal hides.  

Remember, tranquility in peaceful, sweeping motions.  Peace.  Breathe.

Every crack of a twig was no bird but a Brit, every call of an animal was an American.  He did not fear the Americans, they might pity him, and they might simply strip him of his garments and send him home.  They might laugh at him and treat him like some lesser primate.  

Krodh, anger.  He had spent so long living in it, that he was sure it was far too late to give it up now.  There was Krodh everywhere now.  The whole world suffered from it.  Lost somewhere between Caen and Bayeux, he found himself willing to accept that this was not the time to repent for such sins.

The Gods didn't paint him brown to have him suffer.  Yet he suffered.  He suffered in cold and he suffered in rain and he suffered from being so far from home, but he suffered in silence.  He had one white man telling him to shoot at another white man, but he was more willing to take orders from a German rather than a Brit.  He hated them.  He hated them enough to raise his hand and volunteer to fight against them.  North Africa had been hot.  The POW holding areas had been hot, but France was cold, and he hated that as well.  

The beep struck him like the shot of a bullet, blood rushed, his eyes widened.  The small trickle of sweat slid down his neck from under his Dastar.  The mine rested in front of him.
He kneeled.  Careful.  Peace.  Breathe.

Peeling back the disturbed grass, he brushed away the dirt and soon enough he found the rim of the mine.  He carefully laid it open.

His left hand was the hand that did not shake, the right rocked like the legs of a new born calf and the longer he stayed away from home, the worse it grew.  It must be the cold, the wet, the fear of death, the thoughts of his lonesome wife and children.  If he could defuse this mine, he would be safe, he promised himself.  He would go back and kiss the forehead of his young daughter and embrace his son.  He would hold his wife at night again, cradling her body under the sheets of their bed.  His right hand would be the one to hold her, the left, steady and true, would lift off her clothes with gentle precision just like he had lifted the top of the mine.

Out comes that piece, out comes this piece.  Peace.  Breathe.

Finally he found it, the triggering mechanism, nestled in the chest of the mine like a beating heart.  He would stop it.  

He pulled up the wires to it and carefully cut them, the electrical arteries would bleed out and he would be safe.  One wire was snapped, then another.  Any wrong cut could explode the mine.  He was thankful to the Guru for his time on earth, should it end.  The new mines the new wave of Allies had brought with them were difficult.  Every wire was tangled worse than before, every wire looked closer to the one next to it, every explosive could still have been active for sometimes two triggers were rigged to it.  The sweat was clammy on his forehead as he clenched his ivory colored teeth together.

The final wire was wrapped between his fingers.  He could feel it, the power that the single rubber encased artery held within it was the power of the Gods.  It was the power of life and death, or living as a whole or living in pieces.  It was anger, it was greed, it was lust, pride, ego.  It was everything he had been taught was wrong and to give up.  It was everything that might stop him form being human and yet it was everything that made him human.

He pulled it free and waited for the fire.  When it did not come, he withdrew his hand.

Peace.  Breathe.
So this is my (very late posting) of my entry for :icondoughboycafe:'s Historical flash fiction contest.
BLURG  YUP, I tried to write a thing.  I tried to do some playing with language here to see what would happen.

Word Count: 959… <-- Link to the journal.

Research places (I'm just throwing up a bunch of stuff since srsly like no one writes about this and it makes me super sad and everyone should learn about the foreign volunteers in the german army because its so freaking interesting, I can't even HISTORYYYYY)………………
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Josie was digging holes out behind the kitchen when Matt found her. She held up something small and wriggly in greeting. “Look, I found an earthworm!”

Matt crouched down beside the hole and leaned forward, balancing himself with one hand. “Nah, I don't think that's an earthworm, Josie. It looks like some kind of larval beetle.”

“No, it should be -” she broke off and her face fell. “Glass says it's a rhinoceros beetle larva.” She dropped the creature and sighed loudly.

“And you're just going to believe it?”

“Well, it's Glass.” She shrugged.

“And what does Glass have to say about this?” Matt frowned and moved his fingers in a flickering pattern that was too complicated for Josie to follow.

“That can't be right.” Josie giggled. “Glass says you're a lesser spotted palewing butterfly. Have you filed a bug report?”

Matt looked at her seriously. “Josie, you can see right now that Glass has generated its own bug report.”

“What? That can't . . . ” she trailed of into silence before standing up and brushing off her hands. “You're just being silly.”

“ 'Course I am.” Matt grinned. “But see, Glass isn't always right. Come on, I'll show you another way of looking at it.” He stood up and reached forward to press on her temples.

She started back and stared at him. “What have you done?”

“Don't panic. I've just turned Glass off for a bit. I'll put it back as soon as you like, but why don't you come look at your worm for yourself first?” He crouched down and scooped at the larva. “What can your own eyes tell you?”

Josie shrugged, but she stepped around the hole and crouched down beside Matt.

“Look at the colour of this thing. What colour would you say that is?”

There was a silence before Josie answered. “Sort of see-through and greyish, I guess.”

“Exactly. Now I happen to know that earthworms are a pinky brown colour, so this can't be an earthworm, can it?”

“We already knew that. It's a rhinoceros beetle larva.”

“And I'm a lesser spotted palewing butterfly.” He carefully laid the larva on the earth between them. “How do we know it's a rhinoceros beetle larva?”

Josie shrugged again, but she peered at the bug. “It has legs?”

Matt nodded. “That's good. We know it isn't a worm, since it has legs. So it's pretty likely that it's some kind of larva. Do you want to give me some more details on the colour of it?”

“It's pretty much all squishy and grey.” Josie tilted her head, considering. “Well, I guess the one end is a bit browner. It doesn't exactly look like that's just dirt.”

“Very good. In fact, that's how we can tell it's a rhinoceros beetle larva. Other creatures wouldn't have that colouration.” He grinned and stood up.

“Okay, I guess that was kind of interesting, but you can turn Glass back on now.” Josie presented herself to Matt and looked up expectantly. He reached out to her temples and applied a gentle pressure.

“That's better.” Josie shook her head slightly to reorient herself. “How did you know all that about rhinoceros beetles anyway?”

This time Matt shrugged. “I asked Glass.”
For Memnalar's Seven Days of Sci Fi (Day One). The prompt was "nonessential prosthesis" and the word to include in the story was "larval".

Glass is named for Google Glass, but more in an inspired-by than based-on kind of way. Most of the research here went into rhinoceros beetles. (Yeah, I googled them.)
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           The first time they met, Mo smiled. In her head, the girl knew that smile was one that the world would call “ugly”; however, she was still a child so her heart was bigger. Her heart smiled back.

            It was a wintry Friday in February. Beth was almost thirteen—possibly the worst almost in a girl’s process of growing up, the almost of never catching a break from her own mirror and wishing her body would just make up its mind already. She poked at her soggy corn flakes and plucked at the itchy new strap of her bra. Wished her breasts were either big enough to actually make some shape, or small enough that she wouldn’t have to bother. Her parents lounged their way into a late morning with black coffee and yesterday’s crossword puzzles. This was a typical family snow day: nothing out of the ordinary was supposed to happen in their quiet Michigan town.

            Then, the doorbell rang.

            “Elizabeth,” her dad’s nose poked over his paper. “Please go fetch the paper. Your mother will starve for want of new puzzles.” So she went, shuffling and sighing and wishing that no stranger might have to see her with fresh pimples and a bra that did little beyond emphasize how grown up she wasn’t. Oh well; the newspaper man only had to see her face, if she kept the cold out well enough. Beth twisted the knob and opened the door a crack. To her surprise, however, it was two people who crept in with the cold. Beth thought “crept” because she had never seen a more uneasy looking woman, but in reality the wind ought to have swept her in on Beth’s doorstep like that storm that she was, that utter train wreck of a lady and her battered passenger that would change life forever.

            She had trouble written all over her with the indelible inkings of bloodshot eyes, a ragged jacket meant for warmer weather, and bones that stuck out in all the wrong corners of her face. She looked at Beth and asked in a voice like cat-scratches, “Is Mister Morison at home?” The word “Mister” took its time exiting her cracked lips in a stereotypical southern crawl that didn’t suit her.

            “Mr. Morison is my father.” Beth’s response was barely loud enough; she felt like a sock monster had wriggled down her throat. What could this blown-away woman want with her dad? Everything about her was wrong, from the shaking of her knobbed fingers to the sickly-sweet smell that hung around her like smoke.

            “Father, father,” the woman murmured. “Of course, you have a father.”

            Now Beth was annoyed. “Everyone has a father.” But her retort died quickly in the thin, frigid new air this woman had brought in. She had left the door open.

            “No,” she murmured. “But everybody needs one.” Then, to the wintry chasm behind her, “Come on in, Mo.”

            Mo? The coughing hum of something mechanical and broken answered Beth’s silent question. As the hunched figure of the second visitor wobbly-wheeled into view, the girl could only stare dismayed. She had never felt sorrier for anyone in her life, and it made her feel smaller and younger than any A-cup or breakout. As the patch-capped head of this new intruder twisted unnaturally to blast her with a pair of seaweed green eyes and a soundlessly open mouth, Beth’s fingers twitched and bunched themselves in flimsy flannel and her lips worked themselves into a weak attempt at a smile.

            The boy smiled back.

            The instincts of children are sharper than most; they can tell when someone means what they smile. No matter what this boy, this Mo, looked like with his sparse, red hair, sallow skin blotched birth marks, eyes that bulged from his face too widely, his smile was ugly and perfect. It melted her. Maybe this was why, when Mo extended his hand with an awkward jerk, she felt compelled to take it. Maybe this was why she didn’t ever want to let go.

            “He likes you.” The woman sounded relieved, but Beth didn’t look at her. She was too busy processing the mysteries hiding between these cold, near-useless fingers limply grasping hers and the many words that swam in Mo’s too-big, green eyes.  

            “Anna?” Beth didn’t know when Dad had entered, but his voice sounded pale.

           “Gregory.” That was her dad’s name. It sounded scary, the way Anna said it. All flat and bizarre. Unfamiliar, yet too close to the way Mom said it when she was mad.

            For one horrible moment, Dad said nothing. Then, “Good God, Anne. What have you done to yourself?”

            Anna made a sick, choking sound and Beth realized she was an adult about to cry. She was a skeleton in skin’s clothing, and even her skin was sick, sunken into canyons beneath her lifeless eyes. Beth then became less afraid of how Anna stood like an alien in her home, and more afraid that she wouldn’t be standing much longer. Mo’s smile disappeared; he was looking at Anna, and Beth knew she was his mother.

            Anna was looking at him, too. She said, “Oh Greg…I didn’t do it to myself.”

            When Dad saw Mo, he almost fell over. “Is—is that…?”

            Anna smiled sadder than she had sobbed, “I’m going to Hell, ain’t I?”

            “Greg?” When her mom entered, Beth couldn’t bear to look at anyone but this crippled boy in front of her; everything else seemed suddenly too horrible. “Gregory,” Mom said again, this time sounding much farther away. “Who are they?”

            Beth turned around. Her father wasn’t looking at her; he was looking at this boy she couldn’t stop seeing, and the hand that hung twisted and useless in her own.

            “He,” Dad said, loudly. “Is my son.”


            Annabelle Elizabeth Gray was thirty-seven years old; the heroine had added another fifteen years to her face, but her memory was clear enough. Gregory Lars Morison—my father—had met her during their second year of college. She had been an engineering major, and the only woman in half of her classes. He had been one of many men, but the only one who remembered her name. They had two months together before a death in the family called him away to care for Beth’s grandmother. Originally, Anna had been the one to break it off. She found out she was pregnant only a week afterwards, and she was too proud, too in love with two months, to call him back. After that, the story told itself with silence heavier than words would have been, anyway.

            Finally, Beth’s mom said, “You need a doctor, Miss Gray.”

            “Monet needs a father,” Anna said. “I’m done with getting things I need but don’t deserve.”

            Monet. Beth looked into her new companion’s eyes. They reminded her of watercolor windows and seas of stained glass. He was named after an artist, a man who painted a single thing in a thousand different ways.  

            “Dianne.” Dad was looking at Mom for the first time in an hour. “What are we going to do?” And Mom didn’t answer, because she couldn’t, and Anna didn’t beg, because she wouldn’t. Looking between the three of them—her father, her mother, and her brother’s mother, Beth saw Anna’s runaway stare become infectious. Everyone was scared.

            Beth grabbed Mo’s hand again and he squeezed her suddenly, unnaturally bent fingers pressing patiently into her own. His eyes were the only clear ones in the room. They smiled before his lips did, and this time Beth smiled back with more than her heart. She smiled with everything she had, because Mo had taken her insecurities with a touch of his own crippled life. Crippled, yes…but life, and one that he had obviously been grateful enough to keep living, despite the cruelty of his circumstances.

            “Daddy, we’re going to keep him.”

Whew. It's been a while since I wrote a short story this...well...long. The dream I had which inspired it was actually quite short, but as Mo (the only common factor between my dream and this story), and Beth grew into each other, I had to write more around the original text. I know this is, again, quite long, but I hope you all give it a whirl. I've fallen quite in love with the dears who reside within its letters. :heart:

They say a writer's characters are his or her children; I prefer to think of them as my friends.

Edit: Oh my goodness...a DD? I'm so grateful, so happy that everyone enjoyed Mo this much. Thank you, everyone. :heart:

Another edit: I've been trying to revamp this piece, and in the process it's changed quite a bit. I had to shave it down to five pages double-spaced for my fiction writing class...thoughts? Likes? Dislikes? Suggestions? I welcome them all happily. :huggle:
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"It was a violation of the treaty and this requires action!" Elthibar exclaimed. "Anna was captured by Hans, a member of the European Hapsburg League and a co-leader of the League-Of-Shadows!"

"This can really wait till tomorrow," Kristoff declared. "We have the reception tonight and I don't want you to miss it."

"I'll be there in plenty of time for the reception but while the Irish ambassador is here, I need to negotiate," Elthibar replied. "It was a few months ago that an Irish man dare to suggest that my wife was having her life threatened by my daughter Maria while she was still pregnant and he dared to suggest that I kill my daughter while she was unborn, and so I suspect that there is treachery coming from Ireland and wondering if Ireland is working with any of our foes."

"I would say it was a traitor from Ireland or a member of the League-Of-Shadows," Kristoff declared. "I don't think you should accuse the entire realm of Ireland or the ruler of Ireland for such a crime."

"I can't afford to take any chances," Elthibar replied. "This was not only a threat to my family but also a threat to Dunbroch and now Anna was captured just before her wedding which is shy one month of the treaty expiration and Princess Anna was captured."

"She was rescued and she is safe," Kristoff declared. "I'm just upset whenever an entire nation is accused of a crime against royals or another people. My people, the Sami, were accused time and again by royalty of Norway, Sweden, Finland, and even Arendelle at times."

"You enjoy your afternoon with Anna, Kristoff," Elthibar declared. "Some of us have work to do."

Kristoff left and he felt ashamed that Elthibar had become so suspicious of the neighboring kingdoms. He knew that either new conflicts with more villains would arrive due to the violation, or more wars in which some local villages on the mainland of Europe have not even recovered from the war during Halloween. On the up-side, he was at the happiest day of his life, especially since he was married that very day. He headed over to greet Anna outside the church.

"How are things with Elthibar?" Anna questioned.

"He I suspicious," Kristoff replied. "He is planning to take the forces of Dunbroch and invade Ireland if the Irish ambassador does not apologize on behalf of Ireland because an Irishman attempted to persuade Merida to kill her unborn child, while Merida was pregnant with Maria."

"Well that is a thing unheard of," Anna declared. "Who would dare that one would find a method to kill a baby in the womb of its mother? But why does he not set up a reward for this Irishman as a criminal?"

"Because Ireland is a Catholic kingdom and an ally of the Hapsburg League and he suspects that it was an assassination attempt," Kristoff replied. "Plus since you were captured before our wedding, he suspects that these events were linked and that the violation of the treaty would bring up another conflict or war."

"I'm truly sorry about Elthibar," Anna declared. "I wish there was something that I could do about it."

"There is nothing to be done now but enjoy our honeymoon at the moment," Kristoff replied. "There are many places we could go. We could head to Dunbroch, Stockholm, Corona, Copenhagen, London, and even Stuttgart with the small fortune that I made with the factory."

"It does not matter as long as I am with you," Anna declared. "In the mean time we have a few hours before the wedding reception. We could do whatever we wanted."

Kristoff smiled since there were some new friends he wanted to introduce Anna too.
Kristoff and Anna are on their honeymoon and they are having a good time. Elthibar on the other hand is making preparations to return to work is demanding an apology from the kingdom of Ireland since an Irishman demanded to Elthibar that he and Merida kill their own child before its birth. Also, Hans has violated the treaty in which Elthibar's vacation is cut half a day short.
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