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 Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff

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Wazza
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PostSubject: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Fri Dec 31, 2010 3:46 pm

Alright, so I just got bored and decided to write an Inheritance fanfic. Critique appreciated!
---
My eyes snapped open.

My memory was like a blank wall; I could remember nothing. Nothing, except for one fragment. I remembered tripping over something, then falling down towards the concrete sidewalk, my heavy backpack pushing me down. Then I had slammed into the hard ground.

I sat up, noticing immediately three things: I wasn't on the sidewalk, but somewhere in the middle of a snowy forest; I wasn't wearing my t-shirt, shorts, and sneakers, but instead black shorts made of some light, cool fabric that felt like silk, and a sleeveless shirt made of the same material as the shorts, and yes, they were cold; and there was something heavy on my back, and it wasn't my backpack.

I groaned and flexed my imaginary wings, a thought that felt natural to me, and turned around, preparing to be disappointed for what I assumed would be the millionth time. To my surprise, I wasn't disappointed. My eyes widened as I stared at them. I had wings.

They were black, two large wings that, when I extended them, where at least fourteen feet wide. They looked just like I figured I had always expected them to be: limbs covered in black scales, translucent dark grey membrane stretched out below them. Kind of like pair of miniature dragon wings.

I folded them experimentally. My practice(I thought I had practiced with them, I wasn't too sure) with the imaginary wings had taught me how to control their real brothers, and they did just I wanted them to. Delighted, I extended them, then folded them tightly against my back. I grinned, then craned my neck back to examine them. There were two large openings in the back of the shirt that allowed my wings free movement. Tiny blood vessels bulged through the wing membrane. I gently touched the membrane, and learned that it was tougher than its delicate appearance led me to believe. It would take a pretty strong guy with a really big knife to cut through it. The scales were nearly impenetrable. Said pretty strong guy with a really big knife wouldn't be able to so much as scratch them.

“Woah,” I muttered, simply to hear my own voice. It was deeper than a normal girl's. “Ya'know, I don't really care whether I have a memory or not, long as I've got these.”

I crouched on all four legs and hopped while beating my wings furiously, trying to lift into flight, but I wasn't sure whether it was because I hadn't been born with wings, because this was a pretty cramped space, because I was normally scared of heights, or because this was my first time, but nothing happened. If you didn't count me fanning myself, that was.

With an annoyed sigh, I stood up and folded my wings against my back. Since there really wasn't all that much to do there, I set off into the forest.

I had amnesia, but it was only the events and the people that I didn't remember. I remembered actions, emotions, things like that. And I knew, for the fourteen years of my life, I had resented shoes and socks. Being barefoot without worrying about people shouting at me to put on my shoes was a relief, to say the least, and I was pretty sure this was the first time in my life I had actually felt dirt, true forest dirt, albeit cold true forest dirt, with my feet. You wouldn't believe how nice it is to be able to land toe-first in soft mucky soil when you've only ever known landing heel-first in a sock, which in turn lands in a shoe, and then lands on cement, which then touches humanized dirt.

Now, the other aspects of the forests weren't as nice, but they were pleasant enough, with not a trace of pollution in the air. The forest may have been snowy, but the path that I walked had a bunch of hoofprints, as if it were used a lot, and the snow had all been trampled away. Where there wasn't damp forest floor, there were ferns, and ancient trees rose up from everywhere. Squirrels, birds, insects, and all the other little forest critters conversed loudly, but the early mist muffled the noise.

After a few hours of walking, I came across a stream. I tossed my head in and gulped greedily at the cool, refreshing water. After I had sated my thirst, I lay back on the ground, my feet in the water, my waist-length dark brown hair pressed against the dirt, one wing squashed under me and the other stretched out, soaking up the late morning sun's welcome heat.

I heard something moving behind me, but I thought it was might just be a fox or something. Then I felt the point of a sword at my throat and saw a red blade gleaming above me, one with a black inscription carved into it.

“Eff,” I said flatly.
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 8:09 am

Very nice, prologue??

I do hope you continue with this as it seems very interesting...

At one point you had me totally convinced she was a dragon, yet at another she is a changeling... What's her name if I may be so bold as to ask?

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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 12:15 pm

Lone Wolf wrote:
Very nice, prologue??
No. I don't really write things in chapters, I just stop whenever I feel like it.
Lone Wolf wrote:
I do hope you continue with this as it seems very interesting...
I probably will.
Lone Wolf wrote:
At one point you had me totally convinced she was a dragon, yet at another she is a changeling...
She's a human with black dragon wings Smile
Lone Wolf wrote:
What's her name if I may be so bold as to ask?
That is revealed here:
---
An old silver-haired wrinkle-faced guy stepped out from behind the tree. He held the bright red sword against my throat, and he carried a pack on his back.

“Who are you?” he growled. “Are you on Galbatorix's side?”

“Say who?” I asked, confused.

“Stop lying,” he snarled. “If you won't tell me, I'll have to resort to force.”

“And this isn't force?” I said, staring pointedly at Mr. Old Guy's nice little sword.

The old man chuckled humorlessly. “Oh, this is nothing.”

Then I felt the old guy's consciousness probing at my mind, and my brain automatically set up defenses, walls that blocked him from entering. I felt surprise from him, and he renewed his attack. I began concentrating on one phrase, repeating it over and over in my mind, completely shielding myself. You are stupid. You are stupid. You are stupid. The old guy's expression was so angry, it was almost comical.

“Alright, alright,” he muttered. “You'll talk soon enough.”

Suddenly, something big and blue zoomed down and landed next to me, a cloud of dust rising up around it. It was a dragon, young, too, if its size was any indicator. Its scales were an azure blue, and its eyes were like pools of deep water. Ivory spikes rose up from its back, with a gap between them behind the long neck. A saddle was strapped into the hollow. I winced as one of its feet landed on my outstretched wing, which was much smaller than the dragon's, but besides that, they looked the same except for the color. Its were a bright sapphire, like its body, while mine were black. The dragon snorted a puff of smoke and moved its foot off the membrane, much to my relief.

Brom, the dragon said through my mind, surprise and disbelief in her voice. Are these wings?

“What?” asked Brom, glancing at where the dragon was looking. His mouth dropped open into a perfect "O" when he finally noticed my wing.

Who are you? the dragon asked me warily.

“How the bloody hell am I supposed to know?” I snapped at it. Having cold metal against my neck, as well as having my wing trampled on, was definitely not improving my mood. “First this old guy comes out of nowhere and attacks me, then you come out and step on my damn wing. What, is it a crime for relaxing in these parts?”

Put up Zar'roc, Brom, the dragon said. I have a feeling she does not mean us harm.

Brom grumbled and slid the sword into its matching scabbard. His hand never once let go of it. “You're too trusting, Saphira.”

Saphira ignored him. She stared at me as I sat up, rubbing my neck and folding my left wing safely against my back, ignoring the pain. I said angrily, “Now would someone explain to me where I am, what is going on here, and who are you? Mr. Crazy Sword-Happy Moron is not helping.”

The dragon shook her massive head in disbelief. You don't know?

“Well, I'd have thought that much was pretty obvious,” I commented dryly.

“I think we should just kill her now and be done with it,” Brom said, glaring at me.

“Paranoid little jerk,” I muttered, just loud enough to let him hear. The old man's nostrils flared, and his eyes blazed.

Stop arguing, you two, Saphira interrupted. Let's call Eragon here and decide then. Therinsford is no more than a day away on foot, so if things do not go well, we can always drop her off there.

“She might talk about you,” Brom warned. “You are in charge right now because you need to learn how to make your decisions, and we'll do as you say. I just hope you won't regret it.”

Eragon's coming, Saphira said, ignoring him.

“Well then, now that you two are done talking,” I said, “I'll just be on my way.”

I got up and tried to cross the stream, but Saphira blocked me with her tail. Wait.

I sighed impatiently. “Great, and how long am I supposed to stay here? This is boring, and besides, I'm hungry.”

What is your name, and who are you? Saphira asked. She seemed to have this nasty habit of ignoring people.

“Isn't that the same same thing?” I grumbled. When no response came, I continued, “Fine, I don't know my name, and I don't know who I am, either. I just woke up somewhere back there and I can't remember anything else. Well, I can still speak English, but that doesn't count.”

“Typical,” Brom snorted. “It's always amnesia.”

“What do you mean?” I asked him irritably. “Fine, go check it out then, see if you find anything.”

I opened my mind, allowing Brom full access to all my memories, which had less than three hours of content. He sifted through them, ignoring my discomfort, and he kept on checking and rechecking some of them. Finally, after what felt like ages, he retreated, giving me my much-needed privacy.

“She's telling the truth,” he said to Saphira. He seemed to be disappointed that he didn't have a reason to kill me.

We'll have to call you something, Saphira told me. I could tell she was still curious about me.

I shrugged. “Fine, I'll be Dusk.” Random stuff galore.

Dusk, the dragoness mused. A peculiar female name.

Suddenly, I heard a crash from behind me, and turned. A boy that looked a bit older than me appeared. His dark hair was a mess, with leaves and twigs snarled in it. A buckskin quiver filled with arrows, a bow, and a pack hung on his back, and his light face was covered in sweat. He looked as if he'd been in a hurry.

He looked startled that I was there. “Saphira, what is it? Who's this?” he panted.

I rolled my eyes. “Well, isn't it nice to make your lovely acquaintance,” I drawled. “Oh, but I still have no idea where the eff I am or what's going on in this stupid place, so please pardon me for not being pleased by your graceful arrival, whoever you are.” I emphasized graceful, staring at the crushed ferns that he had left in his wake as I said it.

The boy looked puzzled. “What?”

“I guess your primitive little mind can't process what I just said, so I'll put it simply: Hurry up and tell where I am and what the hell is going on here.

He glanced to the dragon, and they must have communicated, because then he turned back to me and said, “Dusk, I'm Eragon.”

“Well, isn't that just wonderful,” I said. “Very creative name you've got there, by the way, just replacing the 'd' in 'dragon' with an 'e.' Not really, of course, I'm just being sarcastic, right? But I was being sarcastic when I said I was being sarcastic, which therefore means that I'm not being sarcastic at all. But then, that raises the question of whether or not I was telling the truth when I said that, because when you look at it one way, I was telling the truth, and when you look at it some other way, I was lying. I don't really see the point of saying all this crap, though, since you're both looking at me with that blank expression on your face, and the dragon is cocking her head like she thinks I'm crazy, which I very well may be, but that doesn't matter. What matters is, I'm hungry and annoyed, and if you don't answer my questions right now, I'm going to this Therinsford place you were talking about to get my answers, and you guys love me too much to let me do that. Savvy?” I was pretty proud at myself for managing to say all that junk so quickly, although I didn't know where the pirate accent at the end came from.

Very well, Saphira said. Eragon made an angry step towards me, but Saphira blocked him with a claw. Although I didn't hear most of what you said, I did catch the last part. Brom, as storyteller, do you mind answering her?

Brom scowled, but sat down on a large rock by the stream and answered, “Whatever you say, Saphira. This is the land of Alagaesia...”
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 5:13 pm

This be very interesting indeed, I guess by eff you getting her to swear, if so there are much more creative insults you can use, but I guess she comes from planet earth lol...

So... Brom is still alive? That be more interesting. I take it you didn't agree with CP's killing his storyteller off?

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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 5:55 pm

Lone Wolf wrote:
This be very interesting indeed, I guess by eff you getting her to swear, if so there are much more creative insults you can use, but I guess she comes from planet earth lol...
I didn't use the more creative swear words since, ah, I didn't want the mods to kill me the day after I joined Death by Saw
Lone Wolf wrote:
So... Brom is still alive? That be more interesting. I take it you didn't agree with CP's killing his storyteller off?
Dusk appears on page 113 in the hardcover Eragon book, between "Eragon grunted, unconvinced" and "They found a comfortable place to spend the night and set up camp." Oh, I definitely want Brom dead, but I'm not going to kill him in this story.
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 6:25 pm

Hehe I got the paper back version...

That's nice Because I liked Brom.

So you are adding you into he story somewhere along the line?

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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 6:44 pm

Lone Wolf wrote:
Hehe I got the paper back version...
In that case, it's somewhere towards the beginning of Therinsford(the chapter).
Lone Wolf wrote:
That's nice Because I liked Brom.
Lol I though he was a moron.
Lone Wolf wrote:
So you are adding you into he story somewhere along the line?
Not me, just some random character with a personality like mine Cool
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 6:52 pm

Oh yea and inside a Fan fiction, you can use swear words of it helps with the story, just don't go over board okay?

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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 7:11 pm

Okay, thanks, that clears it up Smile
---
“This is Alagaesia,” Brom began. “The first creatures to live here were the dwarves, the dragons, and a few others. Nothing changed until the first elves sailed across the sea, from a place called Alalea, and landed here. The elves were very skilled in magic, but they made one mistake: they treated the dragons as animals.”

“They are animals,” I interrupted. Saphira growled, and I quickly added, “Biologically, like humans, elves, and dwarves.”

“Will you let me finish?” snapped Brom. “Now, a young elf hunted down and killed a dragon. The dragons then took revenge and killed the hunter, then began attacking all the elves. The elves tried to explain the misunderstanding, but they couldn't communicate with the dragons. A long and bloody war ensued and lasted for five years. It would have continued until both races had killed each other off if a young elf named Eragon had not found a dragon egg.”

“You're an elf?” I asked Eragon.

“No, the first Eragon lived a long time before him,” Brom growled. “As I was saying, the first Eragon found the egg and raised the dragon in secret when it hatched, and Eragon named the dragon Bid'Daum. The two convinced their races to form a treaty, and, to make sure war would never again break out between them, they established the Dragon Riders. The Eragon standing before you is a Dragon Rider.

“Over time, the humans arrived, and they were added to the bond. One human Rider was called Galbatorix. His dragon was killed by Urgals, and--”

I interrupted him again. “Urgals?”

“Big horned demons that followed the elves across the sea. Anyways, as I was saying, his dragon was killed by Urgals and he demanded the council of Riders to give him another one. They refused, so he slayed a young Rider and took his dragon. He then gathered thirteen Riders about him, the Forsworn, and killed all the Riders and dragons, except three eggs, one of which Saphira hatched from. He then took control and proclaimed himself king of Alagaesia, and his tyranny continues to this day.”

“Okay, so let me get this straight,” I said. “Basically, fourteen little kids and their pet lizards destroyed the dragons, the dwarves, the elves, and all the Riders, and then forced the humans to serve them? Isn't that sort of, I dunno, lame?”

“Don't speak about things you don't understand,” Brom snapped. “They used dark magics learned from a Shade--”

“A what?” I asked, interested.

“A human corrupted by dark spirits. They used the dark magic they had learned to overthrow the Riders.”

“That's still lame,” I commented. I was interested by Brom's reaction, he seemed to take my summary of what he had just said as a personal insult, but I was too hungry to pursue it further. “Anyways, I still need food. Any of you have something I can eat?”

“No, we ate all our food this morning,” said Eragon. “I'll go hunt if you want.”

“Nah, I'll find something,” I said. I turned my back on him and was about to cross the stream when I heard Eragon gasp, and I glanced back at him over my shoulder. “Yes?”

“You have wings,” he said, pointing in disbelief.

“Didn't your mom ever teach you it's rude to point?” I said lazily, extending my wings as far as they could go.

“I've never met my mom,” Eragon answered.

“Oh, now isn't that just grand,” I said, not really caring whether I had insulted him or not. “Listen, what's edible around here?”

“We're not eating right now,” said Brom angrily. “We still have a full day's march ahead of us. You can eat this evening, like the rest of us. Now, are you going to fly with Saphira or walk with us?”

“I don't know how to fly,” I said dryly. “So I guess I'll walk.”

“Come on, then,” said Brom, as Saphira launched herself into the air, buffeting the three humans with a gust of warm air. “We've wasted enough time as it is.”

I scowled, but folded my wings and followed him.
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 02, 2011 7:34 pm

Nice insults directed at brom.

This is getting better, you goin to watch Brom And Eragon spar?

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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Mon Jan 03, 2011 4:37 pm

Lone Wolf wrote:
Nice insults directed at brom.
Poor Brom, he doesn't know the art of insulting half as well as Dusk does.
Lone Wolf wrote:
This is getting better,
Thanks Smile
Lone Wolf wrote:
you goin to watch Brom And Eragon spar?
Yup.
---
I flopped down on the ground, exhausted. We hadn't stopped at all for the whole day, except for short water breaks. It was evening now, and Saphira had found a clearing large enough for us to sleep in. She was curled up on one side, opposite me. The bottom of her tail was dripping water from when she had cleared the snow from the ground. Brom was sitting next to her, lighting a fire in the center of the clearing. Saphira had hunted down two deer, one she had eaten, and the other she had brought back for us.

Eragon stepped around me and set about skinning the deer, then he cut the meat into chunks that he wrapped in cloth and stuffed into his pack. He took out a pot and dropped an insanely large lump of salt into it. He placed the pot over the fire, tossed in a handful of snow, and dumped some meat into the mixture. I didn't see how that could taste like anything better than watery venison soaked in salt, but the aroma that wafted from the stew actually smelled nice.

Brom, who had been playing around with three large sticks, suddenly leaped up and tossed one of the sticks to me, another to Eragon. When I looked at the stick, I saw that Brom had fashioned it into a crude sword shape.

“Sword-fighting?” I guessed.

Brom grinned, an action which completely contradicted his personality. Or maybe he was just glad at a chance to beat me up. “Yes. If you're coming with us, you might as well learn too. Eragon, as a Rider, you need to know how to fight. Dusk goes first. Now, defend yourself!”

I stood with the stick in front of me. I wasn't going to underestimate him. If this old guy knew how to use a pretty red sword, a stick wouldn't be too hard at all.

We circled each other. I knew better than to attack first. I was just going to wait until he came for me. Unconsciously, I slipped into a perfect fighting stance, with my knees bent and arms pulled in, and Brom's eyes gleamed in delight at this.

Then, he charged me. I parried his first blow, but his second one hit me in the ribs. I was pretty sure that there was going to be a nice-sized bruise there the next day, but I ignored the pain. I was used to getting hit. Then I began hacking at him like a maniac, all defensive maneuvers forgotten when that thought surfaced.

“Guard yourself!” Brom shouted as he hit my arm, making me drop my stick.

“Shut up,” I muttered, picking up my stick and dropping back into my fighting stance. I started going towards defense this time, only attacking when I had a clear shot.

“No, attack more! You can't win fights with just a shield!” the old man cried.

“Yes, you can!” I yelled back at him, but I began mixing up offense and defense anyways, like he had just told me to. “You just set the shield on fire and chuck it at the other guy!”

Saphira laughed: her lip curled and a low, coughing growl coming from her. She has a good point, Brom.

Brom growled and began attacking me even more viciously. Finally, when the stew was ready, he announced that my training session was over for that night.

I glared at him as we ate. I was tired, and there were bruises all over my hurting body. There was a nasty cut on my leg, and I licked it between famished mouthfuls of meat stew. Eragon and Saphira were watching me, amused.

“You actually managed to hit me your first time,” said Brom, examining a patch of red skin on his arm. He sounded mildly impressed. “You learn quickly. Let's see if you can do better, Eragon. Arm yourself!”

I watched as Eragon was thwacked over the head by Brom and collapsed. Brom emptied his waterskin onto Eragon's head, and he came to, coughing and spluttering. Dried blood crusted his face.

“You didn't have to do that,” he said angrily.

“Oh? A real enemy wouldn't soften his blows, and neither will I. Should I pander to your...incompetence so you'll feel better? Dusk didn't need any special treatment, and neither should you.” Brom picked up Eragon's dropped stick. He held it out. “Now, defend yourself.”

Eragon shook his head and turned around, arms folded across his chest. “Forget it; I've had enough.”

Brom hit him soundly on the back. “Never turn your back to an enemy!” he snapped. He tossed the stick to Eragon and attacked. Eragon retreated around the fire beneath the onslaught. “Dusk didn't need to be told to pull her arms in and to keep her knees bent! You should be ashamed of yourself, Eragon. A younger child than you, a girl, and with amnesia, no less, is better in a fight than the great Rider himself is!”

It didn't take a genius to figure out Brom was trying to make Eragon mad on purpose, but apparently, Eragon wasn't the aforementioned genius. He let out a pathetic attempt for a war cry and was rewarded with a stick in the stomach.

It was quite a while later that Brom finally allowed Eragon to get out his blankets. I filched one when he wasn't looking and curled up in it. It smelled like boys, but I was so tired that I didn't care. The last thing I saw before I fell asleep was Eragon's face turning red as Saphira told him something that I didn't quite catch.



I woke up sore and tired the next morning. Brom was already up and cooking some sort of mush. Eragon and Saphira were still sleeping peacefully. I got to my feet and dumped my blanket over Eragon, simply because I was too lazy to fold it and stuff into his pack. Then I sat down next to the fire, warming my cold hands and feet.

“You won't be able to go through Therinsford,” Brom said, by way of a morning greeting. “You're barefoot, you have wings, you're an attractive young woman that's just about finished developing, and your clothes are of elven make.”

“Really? Elves made these?” I asked, glancing down at my clothes.

“No human could ever produce silk so fine. Now, I was wondering if you could go with Saphira and learn to make use of those wings of yours. It will be safer for all of us.”

I shrugged. “Sure, yeah, what the heck? So, we'll just wait for you by the road on the other side?”

“Yes. You wake Eragon and Saphira, we'll leave after breakfast,” said Brom.
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Mon Jan 03, 2011 7:17 pm

It Kinda sounds like your character knows what is going to happen at almost every point.

Question: Did Dusk ever read Eragon in her former world?

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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Mon Jan 03, 2011 7:44 pm

Lone Wolf wrote:
It Kinda sounds like your character knows what is going to happen at almost every point.
Really? Never noticed.
Lone Wolf wrote:
Question: Did Dusk ever read Eragon in her former world?
If she did, she won't remember. Besides, the moment Dusk learns how to fly, she's going to mess up everything, I've seen to that rabbit
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Tue Jan 04, 2011 5:09 am

Nice, I'd love to see some deviation from the IC Cycle rather than just incorperating Her into the Cycle and pretty much following it, Like throw in some twists and turns.....

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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Tue Jan 04, 2011 8:05 pm

Lone Wolf wrote:
Nice, I'd love to see some deviation from the IC Cycle rather than just incorperating Her into the Cycle and pretty much following it, Like throw in some twists and turns.....
Oh, there's twists and turns alright. For instance, Roran's going to the Varden a few months early, and he's not going to Surda either. Which messes up everything else as well. Then there's Durza that's popping up in the next update...
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Tue Jan 04, 2011 10:28 pm

Hehe, Cool!

Cept bring those Fudging Raz'zac with Durz... That'd be a twist in a half.

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PostSubject: Part 5   Wed Jan 05, 2011 9:52 pm

The Ra'zac and their parents show up later.
---
Saphira and I watched the two men run off towards Therinsford. Then Saphira turned to me and asked, You don't know how to fly?

“Err, no,” I said. I got down on all fours and began flapping my wings crazily, but I didn't so much as lift a centimeter off the ground.

The dragoness' eyes glittered mischievously. Climb onto my back.

I stared at her. “What?”

Climb on,
she repeated, crouching to let me get on more easily.

“I have a very, very bad feeling about this,” I muttered, but I heaved myself into the saddle anyways. I fingered one of the straps. “How does this thing work?”

Saphira didn't answer, just leapt into the air. I grabbed the spike in front of me so as not to fall off.

“Watch it!” I shouted at her. We were rapidly ascending, and the frigid wind was blasting past my face. “I'm scared of heights!”

She replied, laughing, Good! Then she flipped over, and I fell.

“Eff you, you little--” I swore at her. I was plummeting towards the ground at at least eighty miles per hour, and accelerating approximately a lot more per second. I howled, still screeching cuss words at the dragon, who was diving alongside me. We were falling through the clouds, literally, and I was soaked through. I looked down, but I wished I hadn't. The ground was a blur of brown, grey, and mainly green. I couldn't even see the individual houses from my height. “If I die, I swear, I am suing you!” I screamed at her.

Maybe it would help if you extended your wings a little? Saphira suggested unhelpfully.

“Thank you very much for that absolutely gorgeous piece of info, I'm sure, but-- Hey, wait, why didn't I think of that?” I snapped my wings open, and they exploded with pain as I was jerked upwards from the sudden movement. I swore some more, but then I realized something important: I was gliding.

There, that wasn't so hard, was it? Saphira said, opening her wings as well so we were flying side by side.

“Oh, shut up already,” I growled at her, but I don't think she heard over the wind.

Are you still scared of heights? Saphira taunted.

I swerved and landed on her left wing, messing up her flight pattern and dragging her down. Saphira growled in surprise, then playfully butted me off with her snout. Thus ensued the greatest aerial battle of all time between a human and a dragon. Well, technically, this was the first aerial battle between a human and a dragon, but that doesn't count.

We landed in a clearing a few hours later, and Saphira sent Eragon an image of where we were. We were both panting from our mock battle. I grinned at the dragoness.

“You're not too bad,” I said, breathing heavily.

Saphira made her laughing sound again. Neither are you, human.

I was about to reply, but then I felt someone hammering away at my mind, and I set up my typical defense. You are stupid. You are stupid. You are stupid. Saphira turned her head and growled at some bushes. Said bushes quivered, and a man stepped out from them.

He was tall and slim, like a twig. He wore black armour, and a red cape billowed behind him in a dramatic semi-superhero fashion. His white face had a bunch of red lines crisscrossing it, and his hair was violent maroon. His fingernails were sharp and black, and in his hand he clutched a thin sword that was marred by a line that cut across the blade. His teeth were filed into points.

“Dude, you need to go easy on the make-up,” was the first thing I said.

The man's sneering face twisted into confusion. “You aren't screaming and running away from me?”

“Umm, no,” I said. “Why would I do that? You're too ugly to run away from.”

“I am King Galbatorix's general, the Shade Durza!” he announced. “Flee before my wrath!”

“Well,” I answered, “One, with a name like Durza, it's pretty obvious you're a bad guy, since any name starting with a 'G,' a 'D', or a 'Z' is a villain's name. Two, there's not actually a wrath to flee from, if you get my gist.”

“His Majesty wants you,” Durza said. “And either you will come with me quietly, or I will have to resort to force.”

“'Resort to force,'” I repeated. “That's such a popular phrase with you old people. So, tell me, Durza, how are you going to make us go with you? I'll have to remind you that there's a pretty angry dragoness over there, while I'm an annoyed random person who's too tired to go anywhere with anyone. That includes you. Also, I was wondering something. How can you people even remember that guy's name? It's so long. I think it was Gandrayda or Gabriel or something.”

Durza scowled. “Enough talk! Now come with me, both of you.”

“You're weird,” I commented. “First you're telling us to flee before your wrath, and next you're telling us to go with you? I just don't get you old-fashioned villain types sometimes.”

Durza scowled some more, then he shouted some random gibberish, slytha or something. My eyelids drooped, and I began to feel sleepy. Saphira collapsed next to me and snored, her eyes closed.

The last thing I saw before I fell to the ground was the Shade standing there, a triumphant and slightly confused smile on his ugly face.
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Thu Jan 06, 2011 5:11 am

Oh truly epic.

She tries to mess with his mind and it didn't quite wrk, but anyhow, this was awesome!

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PostSubject: Part 6   Sun Jan 09, 2011 4:24 pm

Oh dang, I completely forgot about this topic. Sorry about the long wait, I was on IF.
Lone Wolf wrote:
Oh truly epic.

She tries to mess with his mind and it didn't quite wrk, but anyhow, this was awesome!
:D That was nothing compared to how she escapes from prison.
---
I woke up with an annoyed groan. I was sitting in a cell made completely of stone bricks, except for one locked metal door with a barred opening in the top, and a window set high in the wall and fitted with iron bars. Sunlight streamed through it, often blocked by moving shadows. I was sitting on a pile of rotten hay. Some jerk had tied my hands in front of me. I had a headache. And I was most definitely not the happiest person in the world.

I set about chewing the ropes off my wrists. I was done after a few minutes of vicious gnawing, and I picked out the strands of rope stuck in my teeth.

“Yo!” I shouted at nobody in particular. “Do you have any Sudoku puzzles? Or maybe an iPod or something? I'm sorta bored around here. You people need to improve your prison quality some. I mean, the department of health would have a fit if they could see this.”

See, I was more bored and annoyed than scared. It's sort of hard for me to be scared of a clown who's addicted to make-up, nail polish, and hair dye. I was actually pretty surprised that Durza's sword wasn't covered in red and pink lipstick.

When no one answered, I just started playing with the mice hidden in the hay. Somebody must've gotten pissed off after a few hours of listening to frightened squeals and “Gotcha,” because the clown himself came to visit me in my dingy little cell around midnight.

Needless to say, I was absolutely delighted when the metal door opened and white-faced make-up man appeared. Durza stepped in and two guards closed the door behind him. I leaned against the wall, trying to look as bored as possible. It wasn't hard.

“Do you have any crossword puzzles?” I asked him.

The Shade ignored me. “I see you are awake,” he said in a smooth voice.

I rolled my eyes. “Of course not! I'm just sleepwalking. Hurry up and get to the point already.”

“Very well, if that is how you want it,” he said. “Do you know your name?”

“Duh! Who doesn't?” I said.

“Could you tell me what it is?” Durza asked. Man, these people have big personality changes. Last time I saw him, he was a confused moron. This time, his every movement radiated confidence.

“Nope,” I answered. “I don't even know it. Well, I'm called Dusk, but that's obviously not my name.”

“You just said that you did,” Durza said, struggling to hide his impatience.

“When?” I asked with mock surprise. “I just asked you who doesn't, I never said I actually knew my name. You need to get more literal if you want to have a conversation with me.”

“How did you get wings?” he asked me. “Were you born with them?”

“No,” I said. “I just have them. Got a problem with that, clown?”

Durza gritted his pointy teeth together angrily. He seemed to be searching for a good retort, but none came. “King Galbatorix will be here in two weeks,” he said finally, opening the door. “He will deal with you.” And on that happy note, he stepped into the hallway outside and locked the door behind him with a click.

The second the door closed, I searched for Saphira with my mind. She was three cells away from me and still asleep. Next, I scanned the underground prison complex for Durza, and didn't find him anywhere. He had probably teleported or warped or something, but as long as he wasn't anywhere near, I was fine.

Now came the hard part. I had never entered anyone's mind before, let alone controlled one, so this might be more difficult than I thought. I checked out the two guards in front of my cell door. One had weak defenses, the other had none. I went for the defenseless one(poor kid) and quickly took over before he even noticed what was going on.

Next I was in completely in control of his body. He had a sword, a shield, armor, and, lo and behold, keys!

“Hey, man,” I made him say in a stupid, drunk voice. The other guard glanced at him. “Look over there! It's a Metroid!”

“A what?” the guard I wasn't in control of asked, looking in the direction my guard was pointing at. The next move was easy. I forced my guard to unsheathe his sword and slew the other guy with a single thrust. Then I made him get out his keys and unlock the door. I told him to leave the keys in the door, then made him take his sword out of his buddy and stab himself. He was dead before he hit the ground.

I pushed the cell door open and dragged the two bodies into the cell. Then I took the non-bloody sword out of its sheath, locked the door behind me, and head off down to where Saphira was.

Six guards stood in front of the dragoness' cell. I did the same thing I had done with the two dead men back there, although it was more difficult because once the one I was in control of had killed two of his fellows, the other three and ended his life. Then I had to step in myself and kill the remainder, and believe me, it was not easy, what with my minimal training and all that.

I fumbled with the keys and unlocked Saphira's cell. I heard shouting coming from somewhere nearby; apparently, I had been too loud with my method of killing.

Countless chains held the sleeping dragon down, but with a few whacks from my trusty new sword, I tore them apart. I shouted at Saphira, from next to where I assumed her ears were, “WAKE UP YOU STUPID DRAGON!!!” I no longer cared whether anyone heard me or not, since, from the sounds of surprise from near my old cell, I had been discovered.

Saphira sprang upright, roaring loudly. “We need to get out of here before Durza gets back!” I yelled over her noise.

She asked, confused, Where are we? What happened?

“Does that matter!” I screeched at her.

Why, no, it doesn't, she said. Then she set to work doing what she did best: roaring and breaking down prisons with her nice little claws.

I'll be back soon, I told her with my mind, since I couldn't be bothered to shout. I need to check out the armory, they probably have all sorts of goodies in there.

Very well, but be quick,
Saphira answered. We do not have much time.

I took off running the way where there weren't any soldiers. If I'm not quick enough, then you'll have to come fetch me.

I will.




I stepped into the armory. All the soldiers in the place had been too occupied with Saphira to give me any trouble, so I had gotten free reign of the whole prison. I whistled at the amount of impressive weapons in the room, and set about picking one I liked. I found a long, sharp dagger with a round piece of polished jet as the pommel-stone. I grabbed the the ebony leather hilt, which had been wrapped in black wire, slid it into its matching scabbard, and tied it to my right thigh with a strap of leather. I was about to head back out when I saw two other weapons that caught my attention: an exotic-looking bow and a sword without a sheath. I grabbed them as well and ran out of the room.

Saphira! Get yourself over here! I called. I sent her my location and ran down the corridor. Now that the soldiers had figured out it would be impossible to get Saphira, they would be coming after me. I heard footsteps from in front and behind me, and quickly took out my keys and unlocked a nearby cell door. I closed the door just in time. About thirty soldiers pounded by, yelling and screaming.

I was about to leave, but I heard a soft moan from behind me, and turned.

An elf with long black hair and pointy ears lay on the ground. Her eyes flickered open, and she said weakly, “Help.”

Change of plans,
I told Saphira. I'm over here.

The elf staggered upright just as loud screeching noises came from the ceiling. I knocked the elf out of the way of large chunk of falling rock before she got flattened.

“My weapons,” she whispered, and I realised the sword and bow were probably hers. I handed them over, and she put the sword into her belt and slung the bow over her back. “Who are you?”

“Shut it,” I said kindly.

Then Saphira's head appeared from a large hole in the roof. The elf stared and took an involuntary step backwards, but I grabbed her arm and lifted both of us into the air. It was tiring to fly and keep hold of her, though, so I took the easy way out.

“Here, catch!” I called to Saphira, and threw the elf lady into the air. Her eyes were wide as Saphira caught her in her claws and climbed into the air. I followed, ignoring the cries of surprise and the archers under us. Their arrows fell back short, and me, Saphira, and the elf vanished into the night.
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Wed Jan 12, 2011 9:03 pm

We landed pretty far away in a forest somewhere. It was already morning by then, and all three of us ladies were pretty tired. But did that stop us from staying awake anyways? No, it didn't.

The elf was the first one to speak. “I thank you,” she said. “I am Arya of the Varden.”

“The what?” I asked.

“The resistance against the Empire,” Arya explained. Then she turned to Saphira and said, “You have grown much since I last saw you. Tell me, skulblaka, what are you called?”

I am pleased to make your acquaintance, Arya,
Saphira answered. I am Saphira.

“And what are you called, Rider?” Arya asked me.

“Do I look like I need to ride anything to fly?” I grumbled, extending my wings to show her what I meant. “Her Rider's not here at the moment. I'm Dusk, by the way, both of your saviors. So, Arya, what did you do to make the clown mad?”

“The clown?” Arya repeated in that silky voice of hers.

“You know, Durza,” I said. “That's make-up on him, right?”

“No,” said Arya. “All Shades look like that. As to your first question, I used to ferry Saphira's egg between the children of the Varden and the elf children of Du Weldenvarden in the hopes that it would hatch for one of them. It was on one of these trips that the accursed Shade ambushed me and killed my two companions. I managed to send Saphira's egg to the Spine before I was captured.”

“Dang, your story is better than ours,” I said. “We were playing, and then we landed, and then Durza jumped out of some bushes, and then we had this long conversation, and then he shouted some nonsense, and then we fell asleep, and then we woke up in the stupid prison. You wouldn't happen to know where we are, would you?”

“We are near Gil'ead, by the Ramr River,” Arya answered.

“Hey, Saphira, where should we go next?” I asked her. “We don't know how long we've been stuck in there, so who knows where Eragon and Brom are right now? And you can't feel Eragon's presence, can you?”

No, but I do know that Brom mentioned someone called Jeod,
said Saphira.

“I can take you to Jeod,” Arya offered. “He lives in Teirm, directly to the west of here. It's a large coastal city that is filled with merchants. Jeod works for the Varden, shipping supplies to them. Everyone in Teirm knows him.”

“Wonderful,” I said. “How long will it take us to get there?”

“On dragonback, it should take around two or three days,” Arya replied.

“Great,” I said. “We leave in the morning-- No, wait, it is the morning. We leave whenever we feel like it. Oh, right, do any of you guys have food?”
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Thu Jan 13, 2011 7:56 pm

Still loving the Updates, it makes me curious as to what your gonna mess with next...

I like this one, I think I saw a spelling mestake but I am to tired to go back through and look for it but hey, Great update!

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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Thu Jan 13, 2011 8:44 pm

Orion Pax wrote:
Still loving the Updates, it makes me curious as to what your gonna mess with next...
I'm adding in four or five new characters later, _____ will be somewhat of a moron in his first appearance, Dusk is going to _____, the _____ are gonna get pwned, and a few other little things like that Smile
Orion Pax wrote:
I like this one, I think I saw a spelling mestake but I am to tired to go back through and look for it but hey,
I do that sometimes.
Orion Pax wrote:
Great update!
^_^
---
Two Nights Later

Arya, said Saphira suddenly. She kept her thoughts limited so that Dusk couldn't hear them. I am curious about Dusk. She speaks about things that nobody has heard of before, yet does not know of the things that every child in Alagaesia knows from birth. I wonder whether she is from here at all.

They were in the air, flying steadily towards Teirm. For the last few days, they had slept by day and flown by night to avoid detection. It was near morning, and they were just a few leagues away from the city.

Yes, Arya agreed. She is curious indeed. But she can remember naught, if what you say about Brom finding nothing was true.

She is fourteen, yet did not even know how to fly when we found her,
Saphira mused. She wears elven clothes, and she does not look like any Alagaesian or Surdan I know of. She herself has certain facial features of an elf, such as those eyes of hers, and her hair is much more lustrous than any human, elf, or dwarf. And there is another strange thing about her: she can guard her mind better than I.

We will just have to watch her for any clues about her past,
replied Arya. She gazed at Dusk, who was darting through the air ahead of them as a minnow would in water. Arya didn't want to admit it, but she was actually jealous of the girl's carefree manner. Dusk had seen death, she had even killed, and yet she still acted like a child.

“Teirm ahead!” Dusk called out, jolting the dragon and the elf from their separate thoughts. “Land!”



We landed in the forest near Teirm. We had stolen two black cloaks with hoods the night before from some random travelers. The plan was simple: Saphira would hide outside the city while me and Arya would waltz in, chat with the Jeod guy while wearing the cloaks, and bye-bye Teirm, hello Varden. Saphira was worried for Eragon, but we had all agreed that if he had any sense(which he probably didn't), he would come here and talk to Jeod, since merchants like him were bound to know things others didn't. Then Jeod could just pass on the message and we would all meet at the Beor Mountains, which were, according to Arya, Empiretabooland.

After we waved good-bye to Saphira, me and Arya put on the cloaks and headed towards the gates of Teirm. See, apparently most humans have a grudge against wings and pointy ears, so we had to wear the stupid things to hide them. And the weather on the coast was way too hot for winter, so I was sweating like crazy under my cloak.

The city was one of the weirdest things I'd ever seen, not that that's saying much. But seriously, whoever designed the place had a strange since of fashion. There was this humongous citadel in the northeast corner. The buildings by the fortress were really tall, but not as big as the castle, and as they went out, they got lower and lower. All the roofs were perfectly flat. The city walls were pretty tall, a white wall a hundred feet tall and thirty feet thick. Two portcullises, one facing the western sea, the other open to the southern road, were raised. We were going through the one in the south.

At the entrance, there were quite a few guards. They blocked our way with long pikes.

“Whaz ya name?” asked one of the guards.

Let me do the talking,
came Arya's voice in my mind.

“I am Sarah,” said Arya. “This is my cousin, Elaine.” I felt like telling her that Elaine was a terrible name for me, but that would bust our disguise right there, so I kept my mouth shut with some difficulty.

“Whaz yer business 'ere?” the guard said in a thoroughly bored tone.

“We are here to visit a friend,” said Arya. Her tone of voice said something that her words didn't: Get out of my way right now or I will make you pay. The soldier seemed to notice the danger he was in, because he nodded vigorously and let us through without any further inquiries.

“So, where's Jeod?” I asked her.

She waved a hand in the general direction of the taller buildings. “He owns a large shipping company, and lives in the richer part of the city.”

After a while of walking through the streets with the grey stone houses standing grimly on either side, the house quality began gradually to improve, and the people began wearing more expensive clothing. Then we stopped in front of a shop that looked completely out of place, one with a cheery little sign hanging in front. A short woman with curly blond hair was sitting in front of the door. She glanced up when we walked towards her. I was about to ask Arya whether she had gotten it wrong, because I was pretty sure Jeod was a man and not an herbalist, when Arya spoke.

“Angela.”

The woman's face lit up into a smile. “Are you Arya?” she whispered.

Arya nodded curtly, and Angela's smile widened. “Come in, come in,” she said, setting her chair in front of the shop and beckoning them in.

The shop was dark and smelled both fresh and musty at the same time. Candles lit the whole place. Crystal orbs, cards, herbs, teacups, and other random stuff were set up on shelves on the walls. A large black cat lay on the counter at the end.

I didn't know why, but I reached out to the cat with mind, and, to my surprise, I got a reply in English.

Hello, the cat said, stretching. He yawned, then turned to me and said, You know Arya?

You're not a cat, are you?
I said.

The cat blinked at me. I am a werecat. You may call me Solembum.

“Hi, Solembum,” I said, stepping forward and stroking him. He purred.

“Who's your companion, Arya?” Angela asked. She sounded surprised.

“This is Dusk,” said Arya. “Dusk, shed your cloak and let her see.”

Solembum sat up as I took off the cloak and stretched my wings, careful not to knock anything over. Angela gaped at me.

“Wha?” she finally said. I put my cloak back on. Angela shook her head. “Arya, Jeod is in the house to the right. I'm sure he'd love to see you. I'd like to speak to Dusk in private.”

Arya walked out silently, leaving me alone with Solembum and Angela.

“Now,” said Angela. “I'm going to offer you something that I've only ever offered two other people. I'm willing to read your fortune. Your real one, mind, not the one I do for all the rich fool ladies out there.”

“Why?” I asked.

“You have wings,” she said. “And Solembum likes you. That's rare, almost as rare as a winged human. I'm only going to offer once, take it or leave it.”

“Take it,” I said hastily.

“Are you sure?” Angela asked, raising her eyebrow. “One of the people was driven insane by their future.”

“Yeah, yeah, hurry up,” I said.

Angela smiled grimly, then offered me a chair in front of the counter. I sat down, and watched as Angela went through a door in the back and came out later carrying a pouch. She sat down opposite me and tipped the contents of the bag onto the counter. They were bones, inscribed with runes.

“You're a grave robber?” I asked her. Somehow, I wasn't too surprised.

“No,” she snapped. “These are the knucklebones of a dragon, very magical.” Then she tossed the bones into the air and said, “Manin! Wyrda! Hugin!” The bones landed all jumbled together. I didn't get how anybody could read them. However, after a few minutes of staring at them and muttering under her breath, she shook her head again. “You have a very interesting future.”

She pointed at one bone, one with a circle with a line crossing it. “Infinity. I don't know whether this means you'll live forever or for a very long time, but your lifespan will definitely be over the normal.”

“Wonderful,” I muttered, and she glared at me.

“Now, this one here,” she said, pointing at a ship with a stone blocking it. “You will leave Alagaesia but return later on.”

“No surprise there,” I commented. Angela ignored me.

“You will notice that the ship rests on the moon, a magical symbol. That states how you will leave: by magical means. And that one over there, the dagger, means that you will kill an important person..”

“Delightful,” I said dryly.

“And the crown,” said Angela, pointing at another bone. “You will change the world.”

“This is the worst,” Angela told me. “The wandering path. You will have to make many hard choices. Yes, you have a very interesting life indeed.”

I stared at the bones. “Ouch, I'm not going to be a very happy person then.”

Then Solembum said, just to add to my wonderfully joyous little future there, When your mind and body fail you, go to the God of the Grey Folk, and it will show you a way to win. To return to your homeland, the mad king must be defeated. When you wish to come back, you must defeat the mad king a second time, or you can just look for another one.

“Ever heard of the phrase, 'Tis the season to be jolly'? Guess you haven't, then,” I said. My mind was racing with the things Angela and Solembum had told me, but I simply stored it away to study later. Everything would make sense when it happened. Until then, I would just be kept wondering. “Well, thanks for that interesting experience,” I said, standing up. “I'll be off then.”

Solembum leapt onto my shoulder and stayed there as I left the shop and turned right to Jeod's house. An annoying butler opened the door and led me to a room filled with books. Arya and Jeod were sitting at a table in the center, and they both looked up as me and Solembum walked in. The butler bowed and closed the door behind me.

“Ah, and this must be Dusk then, and I see Angela's cat is with you,” said Jeod. His eyes were haunted, and there was a scar on his face. His grey hair and expensive clothes were all rumpled, as if he had been sleeping in his clothes. His expression reminded me of Angela's when she had finished telling my fortune.

“You people like stating the obvious too much,” I said. “Last time Durza told me that I was awake.”

Jeod's mouth lifted into a small smile. “Sit down, sit down,” he said, offering me a chair. I sat in it.

“Hey,” I said, “You wouldn't happen to know who the God of the Grey Folk is, would you?”

“The God of the Grey Folk,” Jeod mused. “I'm sorry, I've never heard of him.”

Did you say him or it? I asked Solembum.

It, he replied.

“It's an it,” I told Jeod.

“I never knew that the Grey Folk worshiped anyone,” he replied.

“Great,” I said. “So, Arya, when do we leave?”

“Now,” said Arya, standing up abruptly. “We have much ground to cover if we are to get to the Varden before the Empire sends soldiers after us, because somebody has surely seen Saphira when we flied.”

Jeod sighed. “It was nice to finally meet you after this long, Arya. Good luck. If Brom and Eragon come, I will tell them where you have gone.”
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 16, 2011 1:17 am

“So, how are we gonna get to those nice little mountains of yours?” I asked Arya. We were outside Teirm.

“The Hadarac Desert is the quickest way. If we fly there, it should take us about four days, because we will have not have to worry about being seen,” she answered. She was leaning against Saphira's neck with her eyes closed.

How will we get water?
Saphira asked.

“Hey, yeah, good question.”

“I have methods,” Arya replied. “We will not have to worry about thirst whilst we are in the desert.”

So, simply to spare you from unnecessary boredom, I'm just going to tell you the short version. Keep a map next to you, yeah? So, we went over the Spine and spent the rest of the day getting to Furnost, where Arya and Saphira went for the lake and I went for the town. Well, no, I actually went for the food in the town, but it's about the same thing. So, anyways, we slept around Furnost, some moron saw us and recognized us from the wanted posters, we had a fight with some soldiers, then we flew into the desert and got ambushed by around forty Urgals. They were like, I dunno, eight feet tall each. Arya blasted them to bits and we ran off. It was the evening of the second day when we saw the mountains(they were huge, I tell you, comparing them to the Spine would be like comparing a tree to an ant), and noon of the third day was around when we got to the foothills. Me and Saphira fell asleep, I didn't know what Arya did, she didn't ever seem to sleep, and we woke up around evening and flew through the night. We stopped at this pond called Kosta-something. We slept some more and right now it's noon of day four. We're standing in front of this waterfall by the lake.

Arya shouted some gibberish at the waterfall, and the waterfall split into two smaller ones as a large piece of rock slowly slid out of the mountain. A stone circle twelve feet thick that had been behind the waterfall slid to the side to reveal a thirty-foot high hall lit with these little lantern things and lined with guards.

“You're joking,” I said flatly. “Are you telling me that these Varden people live inside the damn mountain?”

How long did it take them to carve this? Saphira asked in amazement.

“Hundreds of years,” Arya said. “These mountains are all linked by similar tunnels that lead between the many dwarven cities and villages, providing easy passage. These mountains are the greatest masterpiece of the dwarves. Come now! We do not want to keep them waiting.”

“Oh yes we do,” I muttered. I followed Arya as she gracefully leapt into the hallway. Saphira came after us, and I noticed that the guards all scooted as far away from her as possible.

The door slid closed behind us and the waterfall returned to normal. We were shut inside, and I felt an annoying sense of claustrophobia, even though the place was so frickin' big.

“Halt,” said a bald guy in purple gold-trimmed robes who stood in the dead center of the hallway. His voice echoed around the vast hall. “Who are you, and what is your business here?”

“Hi, baldie!” I said cheerfully. “We're these random people, and we don't have any business here. Kindly shove yourself over to the wall, otherwise I might just keep annoying you.”

Arya shot me a glare. Let me handle this. Turning back to the baldie, she said, “You do not want to anger me, Twin. I have important news for Ajihad.”

Twin(gosh, these people have weird names) blinked, then said, “I must first approve the dragon and the girl.”

“Listen to the elf, kid,” I said. “You don't want to end up like those Urgals back there in the desert. Now move it.”

The guy shook his head stubbornly. “Orders are orders. Either you let me examine your minds or you will not pass.”

Saphira stepped forward and prodded Twin in the chest. Are you sure you want to examine my mind? She projected the thought out to everybody in the hall, and the guards all jumped, as if they didn't think she were capable of speaking English.

“Oh, just let me deal with him already,” I growled, pushing past Saphira. I attacked his mind with this annoying song that I just couldn't get out of my head, but I couldn't find any weak points in his defense. Nothing like a good challenge, though. I created a few grenades from the song and began taking down his walls large chunk by large chunk. His face beaded with sweat as he tried to keep me out, and he clapped his hands to his head as each grenade exploded and sent the stupid song into his head, but I finally managed to get a large enough hole for me to get in. I darted through before he could close it and began sifting through his memories. I found a few interesting ones, like where he was talking to this dude with a beard and a black dragon. There were quite a few memories with the beard guy, the dragon, and another baldie that looked exactly like him, and I stored them into this safety deposit box in my own mind. Then I retreated back out of the hole I had made. All of that took me around thirty seconds.

I grinned at Twin. “Who's the black dragon?” I asked. Twin backed away as if he were scared.

“What?” Arya asked sharply.

“He has some interesting memories,” I said. I sent them to Arya. Her eyes narrowed.

“Come, Twin, Ajihad will want to see this. You,” she said, pointing at a guard. “Take us to Ajihad.”

We followed the guard through what felt like a few miles of tunnels, all of them lined with gold and jewels and statues and all those other shiny little thing, and occasionally Twin would try and run, but Arya would say some nonsense and he would stop. Apparently, those memories I had stolen from him were pretty important. Anyways, most of those tunnels were huge, so Saphira only had to duck her head in some of them. We even went through this city in the mountain made completely of marble and lit by lava in this big crater way beneath us, and a lot of random humans and dwarves came out to stare at Saphira. We crossed this huge place, like, way too huge, a few hundred feet across at least, with this big rose-shaped gem in the ceiling. Four halls led off from the place, and we stopped at a cedar wood door at the end of one. The guard knocked, and a deep voice boomed, “Come in.”
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Sun Jan 16, 2011 2:47 pm

We entered this two-story study with a bunch of cedar bookshelves. An iron staircase spiraled up to the second floor, where there was a balcony with two chairs and a table. One of the chairs was occupied by this lady with dark skin who was reading a book. The stone floor was covered by an exotic oval rug. At the end of the room, this guy stood behind a large walnut desk.

His skin was black, and he was bald with a nice beard. He wore a purple shirt covered by a red vest embroidered with gold thread. He looked like the kind of people you see in the boxing ring on television. This dude who was completely identical to Twin stood next to him.

“Arya, and the blue dragon,” he said. These people always seem to forget me. He waved a hand at the guard, who bowed and ran off. “What a pleasant surprise.”

The elf didn't waste any time on pleasantries. She shouted some random words at Twin's twin, and he collapsed to the ground, unconsious. “Ajihad,” said Arya emotionlessly. “These two are traitors. They have been passing information on to Galbatorix.”

“What?” Ajihad said. “How do you know of this?”

“Open your mind, Ajihad. I must show you something,” Arya said.

Ajihad hesitated, but nodded. I saw his eyes narrow, and he glared at Twin. “Guards,” he cried. About twenty armed people ran in immediately from a back door. “Take the Twins and execute them. They are traitors to the Varden and have been found to be passing information to the Empire.”

“What the heck,” I said, as the twenty random people dragged the Twins out, one of them screaming for mercy and the other still unconsious. “Dude, seriously. We just came in here and you ordered them to be executed? You need to work on your first impressions some more.”

“And you are?” asked Ajihad.

“This person,” I said. “No, really, don't worry about me, just go ahead and do whatever you normally do. I'll just be standing over here and annoying you peeps.”

“Please sit,” he said, gesturing at a few leather armchairs. I plopped down on one, but Arya remained standing. “Now that the Twins are going to die, there are not many that can take their place.”

“Du Vrangr Gata,” said Arya.

Ajihad nodded slowly. “They will have to do, despite their lack of knowledge of the Ancient Language. I will send word later. Now, Arya, I would like you to tell me everything that happened since you were attacked.”

“There isn't much to tell,” said Arya. “We were ambushed by the Shade Durza and some Urgals. I managed to send Saphira's egg away before they caught me.”

“Saphira?” asked Ajihad.

Me,
said Saphira.

Ajihad nodded some more. “Go on.”

“I was drugged and put in a prison in Gil'ead and tortured for information. They did not learn anything from me. Months afterwards, Dusk and Saphira rescued me and we escaped to Teirm. From there, we headed to Furnost and to the Beors.”

“Am I correct in assuming that you are Dusk?” Ajihad asked me.

“Wrong,” I said. “I am Dusk, I'm not assumed to be Dusk. And, before you ask, I'm not Saphira's Rider. Her Rider's this little idiot that's running around with a paranoid grandpa.”

“Saphira, do you know where your Rider is?” asked Ajihad.

No,
Saphira answered. Dusk and I were captured by Durza near Therinsford. We did not know how long we were in Gil'ead, and we did not know where Eragon and Brom had gone after we escaped with Arya.

“That will make things difficult,” said Ajihad, stroking his beard thoughtfully. “I will send people out to bring Brom here as soon as possible. Meanwhile, Saphira, you can stay in the dragonhold above Isidar Mithrim, and Dusk, you can stay in one of the guest rooms.”

“Is the dragonhold open to the sky?” I asked.

“Yes.”

“Great, I'm staying there as well then,” I said. “I don't like houses.”

Ajihad didn't look too happy about that, but he agreed anyways. “I'll let Orik take you two up. He'll be your guide here in Farthen Dur. Orik!”

A dwarf that was just a bit higher than my elbow entered from the front. He wore a sleeveless chain-mail shirt. A war axe hung from a wide leather belt on his waist. An iron-bound oxhide cap showing a hammer surrounded by twelve stars was on his head. He looked bored, even when he saw Saphira.

“What is it?” he asked in a gruff voice.

“Could you be a guide for Dusk and Saphira during their stay here?” said Ajihad. It was more of a command than a request.

“The dragonhold and the guest rooms?” Orik said.

“No, just the dragonhold,” Ajihad replied.

Orik looked mildly surprised by this, but nodded and turned. “Come on,” he said.

“I expect you're hungry?” Orik said as we entered the big room with the jewel.

“Yeah,” I said. My stomach growled in unison with Saphira's.

Orik turned to look at me. His eyes lingered on the dagger I had gotten from Gil'ead.

“Could I see that?” he said.

“You are seeing it, but if you mean holding it, yeah,” I answered. I pulled the dagger out of its sheath and handed it to Orik. He examined it for a moment, than gave it back.

“That blade is made of the same material as a Rider's sword,” he said, leading us down one of the halls. “Where did you find it?”

“The prison in Gil'ead,” I said.

Orik said nothing else. He led us through the city and into a large cave with many stone tables and seats. A bunch of dwarves and humans sat there, eating plates of mushrooms and meat. They turned to stare at Saphira when we came in, but turned away as if they were scared she might eat them if they stared at her for too long.

“You two can sit here,” Orik said, leading us to a table. Saphira curled up around it and I sat down on one of the stone benches. The dwarf vanished into another cave and came back later holding two plates of food. Two men came behind him, dragging a huge piece of raw meat.

The two people dumped the meat in front of Saphira and ran off, and Orik sat down next to me. He put one of the plates in front of me and began tearing into his own food. The dwarf and I started up a race to see who could finish first. I won by about two seconds and burped triumphantly. Saphira laughed.

Orik took the plates back before leading Saphira and me through a bunch more tunnels. We followed him up these stairs that seemed to last forever. Finally, we emerged in the dragonhold.

The dragonhold's floor was the big rose jewel we had seen earlier. It was insanely thick, and when Saphira walked on it, she didn't leave a single scratch. The dragonhold itself was a round roofless room sixty feet across and sixty feet high. Cave openings of varying size were dotted all along the walls. We came out of an arched entrance and stepped directly onto the big gem.

“You'll find that all of these caves have been furnished for a dragon and Rider each. If you need anything, ask someone for me and I'll come,” said Orik. He turned and ran back down the stairs. I got the feeling he didn't like the sky.

“I'll be in that one,” I told Saphira, pointing at a tiny hole towards the top.

And I will stay there,
Saphira said. She flew into a tunnel just large enough for her body about twenty feet above the gem.

I shrugged and launched myself towards the hole. It was so small that I had to crawl on my belly to get in, but it widened at the end into a decent sized cavern. There was a bed at the end and a large dragon-sized cushion. Don't ask me how they got those things inside, or why they put in a bed for a dragon when it was pretty obvious no dragon could get in. A dim red lantern had been stuffed into the wall.

I dropped onto the bed and fell asleep immediately.
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PostSubject: Re: Wings, Amnesia, and All That Other Fun Stuff   Mon Jan 17, 2011 3:44 pm

We've been at Farthen Dur for the last week. The dwarf king, Hotgart or something, wanted to meet with Saphira a few days ago, but of course he didn't care about me. I've noticed something really weird about my wings: you can only see them when I'm using them, when you touch them, when I'm extending them, when someone else tells you about them, and when you've seen them before. Well, no, it's not that nobody can see them, it's more that nobody notices them. So, basically, the only person on the mountain who knows I've got wings is Saphira. If Hoigardo and Ajihad knew that I had wings, I'm sure that they'd be much more interested in me.

There's still no sign of Eragon or Brom. I'm not complaining, but Saphira's worried. She doesn't eat as much as she should, I have a feeling she doesn't sleep too much, and she's completely stopped talking. Sometimes she leaves the dragonhold to look for Eragon, but she always comes back after a few hours just as sad as before. She's worried about Eragon, and I'm worried about her. Ajihad's banned both of us from leaving the Beor Mountains, but do you think that's gonna stop me? I thought so. Therefore, I'm leaving right now, and unless he's got another flying human up his non-existent sleeve, he won't be able to do anything about it. Heck, he doesn't even know that I can fly, so he'll be scratching his bald head wondering how I got out of the mountain without anybody noticing.

I flew out of the dragonhold, directly north, over this lake and a river, turned west when I left the mountains, and kept on going for the rest of the day. There wasn't anyone in the big valley we had come from, so I passed it and headed southwest. Day two saw me at Furnost. I checked to see if anybody had seen an old guy with a boy, and the answer was no. Then I headed over to Melian the next day, and this bar owner told me he had seen them pass by, a boy with gloves and an old man with silver hair. Obviously, that was was them. So I had to turn around and check out Cithri, and nobody had seen them. Next, I went to Petrovya, and they hadn't been there. So then I flew over to Furnost again on the morning of the fourth day to see if they had been there.

As I flew over the lake Tudosten, two dark shapes rose up into the air from the west shore. They were both flying towards me, I could see their wings. One cloaked figure rode each of them. As the four creatures got closer, I saw that the flying ones had beaks, and they only had skin, no feathers or scales or anything. I turned to face them and hovered there.

“Hi,” I called out. “Watcha doin'?”

No response. They just kept coming closer.

“Hey, did you know it's nice to return a greeting?” I asked lazily. “'Cause you people are really rude in that way, see. And I'm bored. And would you people hurry up and get over here already? Hovering above a lake is annoying, cause the water messes up all the air currents. And you chaps will either get yourselves over here or I'll be leaving.”

One of the winged ones and its rider stopped a few fit in front of me. The other circled behind.

“It's nice to face who I'm talking to, you behind me. And when did you guys brush your teeth? I mean beaks. You smell like rotten meat.” Aren't I just so nice?

“What are you?” asked the rider in front of me. He had this strangely annoying voice.

“A human,” I answered. “And let me guess, that thing you're riding is four-legged vulture with all the feathers plucked out, right?”

The flying thing hissed and lunged at me, but I dropped down towards the water. This place was pretty cliché, so I had known perfectly well that those things were bad guys the second they had left the shore. It was still pretty fun to insult them, though.

I plunged into the clear water and came back up behind all four of them, then zoomed towards Furnost. I looked back and saw that the flying things were having trouble. They obviously didn't like water, or the air above water. I stored that knowledge in the back of mind for later use and continued on my way, whistling.

I ducked into the lake near the docks and walked up onto the shore. The nearest tavern was this place called the Fluffy Rock, and the owner always seemed to know everything that went on in Alagaesia.

The owner told me that Brom and Eragon were staying at an inn called the Black Dragon. I thanked him and wandered off. It turned out the Black Dragon was two houses over from the Fluffy Rock, so I had no trouble finding it. The owner of the inn, however, wasn't half as nice as the guy from the tavern. I had to give him a black eye before he told me where Brom and Eragon were. They had gone to the Quacking Moose(these places have really stupid names), a bar two streets away. I then tromped off over to the bar, went in, and saw Eragon and Brom sitting with a boy with a hammer and a boy with a weird sword-thing.

So, yeah, I sat down over at Eragon's table. That triggered a pretty strong reaction from his two buddies. Both of them pulled out their weapons, but Eragon stopped them.

“Dusk?” he asked incredulously. “What are you doing here? Where's Saphira?”

I rolled my eyes. “Dusk isn't a question, so kindly refrain from putting a question mark there. Also, Dusk is a proper noun, and is therefore not a complete sentence, so there shouldn't be a punctuation at all. As to what I'm doing here, I'm looking for you. Saphira's in Farthen Dur.”

Brom glanced around nervously, then hissed at me. “Be quiet!”

“Shut up,” I said. “We need to get to the Beors and--” Something prodded me in the back. I sighed and turned around to see the two hooded figures from Tudosten standing behind me. “Hey, yeah, I'd love to chat with you guys, but now's not the time. Maybe tomorrow?” I told them.

“You and the others must come with us,” the one that had poked me said in his hissy little voice.

“Oh, isn't that just fabulous,” I said. I stood up. “Listen, we have some business over at that place, whatsitsname, the Stupid Toilet.” Okay, so that was a really dumb name, but if there were places called the Fluffy Rock and the Quacking Moose, then there was bound to be some place called the Stupid Toilet.

I pulled out my dagger and randomly waved it at one of the hooded dudes, who dodged easily. I took the chance to push between them and raced out of the Quacking Moose. Remembering that the person I had come for was still in there, I peeped my head back in and called to Eragon and co., “Run, you morons!”

They took the advice and shoved their ways past the bad guys. The hooded people hissed in surprise and ran after us. They were much faster than we were, and I guessed that they probably weren't humans. I took the easy way out and flew into the air. The two hooded guys gained on their quarry. Brom turned and slashed at them, and they sprang out of the way. Then Brom went back to running.

I was about to think of helping when I heard wingbeats from behind me, and spun around. One of the flying creatures from earlier was coming at me. Then I heard a shriek from behind, and glanced back. The other one was charging at me from behind, and this time there wasn't any water to dive into.

The most common and most effective thing ever popped into my mind, and I waited for both of them to get closer. When they were about to slam into me, I dropped down to the ground, and they almost hit each other. But they seemed to be smarter than the average featherless four-legged vulture, because one of them manged to veer below its partner before they could collide.

I cursed at them some and ran.
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