Poster: Ellyn Royce
Post # 2
out for...," she winced when his head thunked in the next second.
Could they hold onto the wall? Would that do any good if the glass type
floor gave way? All these thoughts were going furiously through her mind
and none coming up with a good end result. A blink was followed by,
"do you hear music?" She dared to look over her shoulder as if
she could see music. Humor was never far away from Ellyn as she quipped,
green eyes back upon his, "if a guy ever wanted a ploy to get a
lass up close and personal..." teasing. Yes, she was teasing him
during this dire situation. Maybe it helped her. Giving a nod to his
instructions the whole while she spoke. She was ready to follow his lead
and would cling to him like white on rice. He could make a sure bet on
Too bad Tykir wasn't randy enough to think of that! He smiled with
sincerity following her comment though then looked over her shoulder to
the center of the room. The floor there was practically white still ...
"One, two..." And he drew in his breath to say three and run.
The twang of a mis-plucked string and poorly pressed keys ... and Ellyn
was gone! He didn't even have time to reach out and snatch her. Only a
circle of narrow ledge remained along the entire circle and Tykir was
standing on it. But Ellyn? Ellyn was gone! So Tykir dove into the
That's why she could tease him for she knew it was truly innocent. She
squealed when three was not needed to be spoken or it was and drowned
out by the sound that came from her throat. One that surprised her! It
was followed by a scream. One that would send a Banshee running! Her
worse nightmare was realized and her world gone as she dropped, dropped
like lead in water. She was falling, she couldn't breathe for the fear
that welled up and for certain she was going to be dead! All the things
she would not get to do went whirling through her thoughts, all those
that would miss her, all those she would miss.
It was easy enough to follow the sound of her fear to find her. Blunt,
not sharp, beads of crystals hailed down on them as he soared in an
arrow's course straight to the sound. The cavern beneath that layer
opened up, as if there were not walls at all and gave Tykir plenty of
room to fly. But he didn't fly yet, he swooped down, narrowed in, and
caught her beneath her arms, and only then snapped out his wings to send
them sailing to the side rather than down. He held her tight, her back
to his front, arms wrapped around her, hands locked in front of her.
Even as they started to ascend, he noticed that the crystals were
healing themselves, filling in, creating a ceiling where once the floor
had been. "Son of a ..." He breathed, there was nothing to do
but to go down, into the darkness, and the unknown.
She almost fainted in his arms when caught up. She had thought herself
dead and now there was hope. She felt light headed and her whole body
drained of any energy for those few moments. "What is this,"
managed out in a hushed whisper. She felt like she couldn't think at all
but clarity was starting to fill in again. She tried to look, tried to
figure out what she was seeing. Obviously the floor was becoming a
ceiling what lay beneath them then? She didn't dare to look down. Yet.
They could have tried to chip away at the crystals with Tykir's dagger,
but that would have left one of them holding with only one
arm...probably not the best thing right now. "Looks like our
adventure continues below, Ellyn." Tykir breathed close to her ear,
and with them both in a standing position, he started lowering them down
... and down ... and down some more ... dang ... he wasn't really liking
this whole feet into the unknown thing going on. They probably lowered a
good twenty stories before a light could be seen down some more and then
off to the right. And guess what...a shadowed wisp of questionable
origin whisked away no sooner then it was seen.
A chill ran up her spine, having her shiver with it for the fleeting
moment. Was it due to the circumstances or his breath in her ear? Hard
to say. "Yes it does," not even considering the cause of the
shiver other than it was the adventure. Certainly it was a high,
flirting with death and the unknown. She was holding on tight, if she
went down, meant he did too and not like the last time she wasn't doing
it alone. They were in on this adventure together! "How many feet,
is there a bottom," her worries showing as it seemed to take
forever and a day! "What was that?" She felt it more than saw
the shadow. Had they landed yet? She'd probably be standing a few
moments before realizing she was at this point.
They actually splashed down, but only ankle deep in whatever liquid it
was that cushioned their landing. Tykir released Ellyn, keeping an eye
on the lighted passage, and lowered to a squat. His fingers dipped in
the liquid, then he brought it up to his nose, rubbing his thumb over
the tips of his other four fingers and sniffed. Nothing he could
recognize, but he held a faint, sweet scent, enough to make his head
swim a minute with just the brief close contact. He stood slowly,
glancing around in the dim light provided by the lit corridor in the
distance. "I don't think we have any alternatives, Lady Frasier.
Like moths to the flames ... we'll have to seek out the light."
She almost took a stumbling step away once they landed but got her
bearings fast in spite of her legs feeling like rubber. "Is it
water?" Came in a hush tone as she too lowered to touch her fingers
into the liquid then smell. She almost tasted it but decided that might
not be wise. Something was off.. or so she thought. Precaution was best.
"Aye," straightened as she spied where the light was coming
from. "Far better than my options earlier." Wry smile turned
on Tykir for that free fall she took but then caught. "Thanks for
not letting me fall to my death." Words were sincere and actually
showed there was a serious side to Ellyn she usually kept hidden. She
was quick, however, perhaps for leaving that glimpse show, to start in
the direction of the light. "The air is different down here."
It did have an odd scent to it. Of flower petals which had fallen from a
bush and had started to turn brown. Or the flowers that were in a
vase...too long. It felt thicker, heavier ... intoxicating ... and the
atmosphere seemed to move with a sensual, almost fleshy pulsebeat. They
drew closer to the light. "Thanks for trusting me." Tykir
added to her thanks, but his words were barely audible, as if the air
sucked up the sound the closer they came to the opening of the cave's
portal. His eardrums hummed and the pressure inside his head caused him
to lift and hand and hold his temple. Not an unpleasant sensation, but
different, and offputting.
She was getting giddy with the scent and started singing tragic love
songs under her breath about the woman who waited by the sea for the
return of her young husband who never came. She wept an ocean worth of
tears to bring him on back to her. But the years piled on each other and
it was the old woman by the sea that legends were made of. Then she
hiccupped as if she'd been drinking. The unexpected reaction had her
giggling under her breath, only causing another to happen and giggling
turned into laughter. Then there was fresh air which she sucked in
greedily. The hiccups disappeared as well the giggling. "There is
something different in that place," as she tried to figure out
where they were and mark it for a later adventure.
Tykir was hooting out into the air, at different sections of her song.
There wasn't an echo and that's what intrigued him. Heck, presently,
everything intrigued him. Ellyn sang, Tykir hooted ... and as she
started to giggle, he was chuckling along with her. Where were they was
a good flippin' question! The corridor opened up into a wide expanse of
lush, tropical landscape. Birds of any and every color squawked and
tweeted, flew and hopped about. Flowers bloomed with large,
multi-layered brightness and the trees that grew up twisted and tangled
into each other, creating quite the overwhelming visual. A stream wound
a path under the trees out into the wall of the cave, No doubt spilling
into the corridor beyond. Nope. Tykir wasn't going to be drinking that!
Shitski! There it was again. Just a movement at the corner of his eye
that when he tried to find it, the shadow flitted away before he could
see it fully. Wait! There was another! His head jerked to look in the
other direction. Up. Up in the trees! Several were catching his eye but
managing to escape his vision.
She couldn't believe her eyes as she looked around in wonder. "I
feel like we're on the other side of the rainbow." But the worry
marred her brow. What if they were in an alternate plane, how would they
get back? Would one want to get back if this was the perfect world it
seemed to be? So what did she do to cover up her worry? She teased,
"you may be stuck with me Tykir." Giving him a wink but then
there was the shadow she caught out of the corner of her eyes again.
"Maybe we should try and catch that and see if it can talk."
Anything was possible after what just took place in that cave. She
blinked again as she started in that direction for there seemed to be
another, or was it the same on just appearing in another spot that
"Poor you." Tykir laughed, and with her suggestion, he bolted
in the direction he caught the next vision. Here, there, everywhere, the
two teens were racing about like kittens after a beam of light. So close
and gone. Almost there ... but not.
"Aye, I'll be resenting the fact I don't have wings and can fly
like you." Teasing banter came easy, luckily, made the situation a
little lighter to bear. She finally darted and threw herself onto the
bit of shadow and light only to have vines whip around her like a
cocoon. She screamed as she struggled against them and then they were
gone in the next instant. There was trouble in paradise as she got up.
"Did.. did you see that?" Whatever just happened went in a
blink of an eye.
He heard her scream, that was the only reason he saw it, and he was mid
leap to catch a shadow when he looked her way. He landed in a bush,
fighting his way out as the thorns stabbed and slashed at his arms, his
chest, his legs. But she was freed, and he didn't have a scratch on him!
Okay...this was enough. "Enough!" He repeated his thoughts
aloud, shouting out into the glade, his voice actually echoing over and
over and over. And then, there they stood, a multitude of shadowed
forms, lined up shoulder to shoulder and then others behind. Probably
twenty, thirty...maybe more, Tykir was counting. He hurried over to
Ellyn to draw her near him and stared back at the shadows staring out at
them. There were no eyes, but sure as Tykir looked them over, he and
Ellyn were getting a once over as well. The pressure in their heads
increased, and a ringing in their ears began. They were barely taller
than the teens in height but the age of the beings could not be
questioned. They were ... timeless. "I said enough!" He
clamped his hand to his ear, cutting a sidelook over to them. Listen.
The whisper of a multitude of voices seeped through the ringing, as
if that sound made it possible for the communication to take place. Listen.
This made the whole beautiful scene just creepy. In fact, she rushed at
him as he rushed over and so crashed somewhat into him. Once more she
had a grip on his clothing that no matter how many shadows were around
them, she was not going to be pulled from his side. They were in this
together and would see it through, together. She realized then that the
shadows were not much bigger than them, were they deceased teens that
banded together and their age had attracted them? Anything was possible
as nothing was impossible. "Yes," span of a breath,
"enough!" The last coming with more conviction and adding
support to Tykir's demand.
His hold around Ellyn's back tightened as the group as a whole
communicated without spoken words. Surely she heard them too!
"Listen? Listen to what?" He barked out at them, his head was
so full with that pressure he felt like it would explode, and yet, it
caused him to sway, an almost surreal, drunk feeling. "Dang, back
off the head, folks! Who are you?" He grumped, slanting another
look to the gathering. Listen. Is all that was sent again at
first, but the pressure lightened up some, but with that, the ringing
intensified. Obviously both had to do with his ability to ... listen!
"What?" He asked again, he was tired of listening to
listen...he wanted more!
There was a sound in her head that was first more like a hissing. One
that gradually built up to lissssssttttennnn. When Tykir spoke the very
word, it clarified it that was not just some wind in the trees.
"Yes, what?" She was repeating him again. "What do you
want of us? Where are we?" Both questions on her mind as she was
gradually feeling they were not life threatening, or so hoped.
We are...Sssssthhhheeegionnssss. The name was drawn out, a
spiderhiss of explanation which caused Tykir to cringe. Perhaps it was
his bloodline that caused the magnitude of his discomfort. Hearing more,
experiencing more. More definitely not fun at this particular point.
"Okay...and?" And because of his discomfort, the dark prince
wasn't really being very kind. There were not more words, just that
blasted ringing, loud, shrill, painful. "Okay! I apologize."
Tykir cringed with the realization he wasn't being very royal at
present, and well, listening might just stop this infernal sound! Waaaaater
above...sssssstagnation below. Tykir, with one hand still pressed to
his head, looked to Ellyn. Stagnation? Where? And as soon as he thought
it, as soon as the energy to think it was released, all around them the
scene vanished. The blackness of death, rot, ruin ... and the smell, the
smell of the same that had been barely hidden by the facade, but now hit
them both full force.
"I think they are saying they are serious," serious about what
was left to be determined. At least they were trying to communicate with
them rather than kill. That was a big plus right there. There came the
squeal on the heels of that very thought. "We're in hell.." it
had to be. Certainly it was not the other side of the rainbow. She was
tugging at Tykir as she moved away from the rotting stench, "we got
to get out of here." There had to be a way. "Or get in contact
with your brother Andrew." She knew all the stories on Andrew and
Tykir should have some link with his brother? She was really hoping.
No! "No!" Tykir spoke the word the same time as the
multitude. Andrew could handle this, and Tykir knew it. But Tykir could
handle it, Tykir would handle it. "You need water, we
understand." Do it. The words filled their heads. "You
have to let us get out...let her get out." He gave a cant of head
toward Ellyn. "How do we get out? So ... we can do it?" There
isssss a waaaaay. But water...firrrst. Tykir rubbed his temple, this
whole communication was getting to be too much. "Break the seal
above." He gave an uplift of chin. "It breaks anyway, you're
not keeping anyone out." With the hand from his head he motioned
between himself and Ellyn as proof. "Break the seal and the water
from the falls can be diverted, at least some of it, to flow down
No Andrew, Tykir wanted to do this on his own. Macho man. These thoughts
had Ellyn eyeing him in that way he might wonder if she was about to
swat him upside his head, get his mind back to where it was the most
assured way of getting out of here.. dam his ego! Except then the voices
were in her head ... do it ... "it seems to be a quandary here, you
need to let us go to help you or one of us if you can't trust our
word." She was getting to the point she would like to strangle
them, back and forth, back and forth. Eyes narrowed as she waited.
Tykir looked over to Ellyn as she spoke. "Exactly, allow her the
means to go, and she'll bring help. Either you trust us or you are done
with us. You're about to cause my head to implode with your
hissing." He turned fully to Ellyn then, resting a hand on her
shoulder, his voice lowered. "If they let you leave, get to Andrew,
let him know what we've found. Then go to Karl and get the Four. We'll
need all of them to get that water down here..." He didn't get to
say more, four of the shadowed forms swirled around Ellyn, knocking
Tykir back with the force of their energy. They swirled and swirled
around her, a blackened blur of movement until her hair whipped and her
clothing clung tight to her body, twisting around her. And she started
to rise from the ground. "Shit!" Tykir growled, diving toward
Ellyn, not sure what was happening, just knowing they hadn't explained
their choice. Like a blow to the gut and jaw simultaneously, the power
of the shove had his head jerking back and his body doubling over as he
sailed backwards once again. Sssssshe goesssss. He ssssssttaaaaaaysss.
She didn't like the idea they would keep Tykir behind, "you better
not harm him while I do this quest." Calling it that as she
threatened them not to harm her friend. At the same time, she felt
better about one of them getting out of here and getting Andrew, Karl
and the notorious Four Horsemen. Next she found out what it was like
being in a tornado! Her hair whipping with the wind and stinging against
her face when it lashed out. She tried to lift her hands but the force
had them pressed to her side that would take a he-man's strength, if
that even could break the force to lift them. She felt the pull, felt
the rise in the black blur of speed as she ascended. It wasn't the same
as if Tykir had tried to fly out of here, the speed transcended space
and time and the next she knew, she was outside the cave. Thrown to the
ground actually with that hard thud of reality yanking her back to the
present where she blinked, a bit disoriented at first.
Holding an arm across his midsection,Tykir watched as Ellyn lifted and
then, as if in a flash of darkness, they streaked across the dome of the
underground haven and were ... gone. He straightened slowly, a narrowed
look passing over the remaining shadows of what were once who-knew-what.
"I won't help you if she is harmed." He growled past the
discomfort that still compressed his skull. It will be no difffferent
if you do not. That wasn't what he was expecting and dark brows shot
up. Surely, though, they wanted it different, or why would they have led
the two here? They couldn't be completely evil, a threat to the safety
of Heathfield, or Andrew would already know about them. That helped ease
a little of Tykir's trepidation about his circumstances. "But it
will be different if you allow us to help." Came his retort.
She got up, not trusting her legs at first as she rubbed her head. The
hissing was gone, that imploding feeling eased away although her mind
still throbbed. One step found it a bit shaky but the second and third
step became more steady. All the while she was taking in her location,
realizing their horses were not far from here as she went in that
direction. Fifteen minutes later had her on the back of her horse, the
other in tow, in a gallop towards the castle. About forty-five minutes
later she was arriving, yelling incoherent parts of sentences that had
the guards rushing to her. "Andrew, I need to see the Prince. I
need to see the King, I need.." taking in a much needed air into
her lungs, "the four horsemen," as if the guards could take
her to at lest any of the ones mentioned, "Tykir.. he is.."
but she was already being ushered to the King. Andrew not so easy to
find but the King, they knew exactly where he was.
What luck! Karl and the Four were seated around the hearth, talking in
lowered tones only because, that's the way the majority of their
conversations took place. When the door to the office flew open, not
only Karl, but all five men came instantly to their feet, all Four had
weapons drawn and two had stepped in front of Karl. The lass was hurried
in, and when it became suddenly clear there was no threat, the men
relaxed and von Rundstedt was already pushing his way between Vincent
and Trevor. "Lady Royce." He began, motioning the guards to
leave. From the look of her, she was in a tizzy, and the Black Griffon
crossed over to her immediately. "Are you alright?"
Ellyn looked like she'd been through a wind tunnel. Which was accurate,
literally. Hair was a mess as only a good windy day could do on it.
More, it was the wild look in her eyes that might alert them before she
even spoke. The rush by the concerned guards was another indication this
was not something of the ordinary. Rushing in like that had her near
faint as all five were to their feet with weapons drawn. "Holytornado!"
She was beginning to sound like the young Prince! "Tykir.."
pulling in a breath before the words came rushed. Rushed as the need for
them to save Tykir. "Tykir. He's being held by shadows. Hissing
ones needing water in the cave," which she told where the cave was.
They would know of it? She sure hoped so. "Need Andrew and all of
you. Water." Was she making any sense? They might need to ask
particular questions if they wanted particulars!
Karl's gut clenched with the prince's name but he continued to her,
putting an arm around her back and leading her further in. "Tykir
is being held by shadows in a cave beneath Sthegions waterfall?"
His gaze didn't move but a fraction from the lass as they approached the
four, but the men moved, one pulling out a chair for her, another
filling a glass with cider, the third slipped away by a passage no one
but those who resided in the castle knew of in search of Andrew, and the
other left by way of the door to seek out Honeee. "They are in need
of water, these shadows who have Tykir? How did he find them? How did
they find him? Lady Royce, why are you the one here?" All questions
raging through his mind, but he swept a large hand in front of him to
clear them all away,this one the only one that mattered. "Are
either of you hurt?"
She was feeling as if in another world again as she bobbed her head at
the place mentioned followed by a smaller voice, not one as near
panicked. "Yes, that is where. You know of the shadows
beneath?" She was hoping that he did! It would make it far easier
than trying to describe things more in your head than visible. No faced
forms of shadows. She hardly noticed she was being ushered to a chair as
she followed automatically, even sitting without conscious realization.
"Yes, they had us both held but Tykir convinced them to let me go
so that I could find ones to get the water they need." She was at a
loss why shadow forms would need water but that was what they wanted.
"We went to see the cave and fell, he caught me and for his wings I
was saved. We landed on something that looked like glass that you could
see through but then that collapsed and we fell to the bottom, the
translucent area reforming above us and we were surrounded by the
The King squatted before her and the entire time she was talking through
her panic, Karl passed his gaze over her. Besides being tousled and
frantic, the lass didn't appear injured. "But you are both
unharmed." He answered for himself, if Tykir had been wounded while
she was there, he was sure she would have mentioned it in her
explanation. "Damn boy." Karl grumbled under his breath as he
looked to the two remaining Horsemen. "Get the horses ready, it
will more than likely take the Four of you. We don't know what these ...
" He turned a smile for Ellyn's sake to her as reassurance, then
looked back to the men, using her description. "Shadow forms want
entirely, but if it's water they want, that they will get. And we will
get Tykir regardless of their desires."