The Fourth Age - Of the Nine

In the shutted lid of the night, in the opened eye of the morning, a voice hisses softly towards the void…

A boy lies in a bed, a bed that is shrouded in a sterile, antiseptic quality that only a room bathed in white can provide. On a stand, near the boy, in a room of white, lies an overturned picture frame. A mother, with worried furrows etched across her brow, picks up the frame and wipes away tiny fingerprints scattered across the nine pictures that call the frame home. She glances over her shoulder as footsteps approach from behind. As always, she steps away from the bed to allow the men of white to affix their wires and straps to the child.

As always, she bites her lip, and draws a thin line of blood when the wafts of ozone flow across her face.

As always, she watches, with down turned eyes, at the non-movements of her son after the act.

As always, she listens to the old radiators belch their steam into the night -- a soft cry that matches the sound of her breaking heart…

The hard rain mixed with a sun kissed tower of the morning day, its coolness giving way to its heated obsidian surface. The wetness turning to a faint steam as it gives its offering to the skies above.

Somewhere in a vale, across dreams, through many dark forests, the ashes of Ga-shadin stir.

In a room of white, lights and sounds burst from monitoring machines for a faint second…then still to the encroaching morning.

A pair of eyes of black looks to the sky and feels a stir of long forgotten emotions course through its veins. Turning about on feet of two it drops to hands and knees and sniffs the discolored misshapen grass. A patch of grass that brings nausea to the eye if gazed upon to long.

Turning about on knees and hands of four, it digs into the grass and removes a large offering. Carrying its riches in cupped hands, it stands upon of feet of two and runs to the horizon, all the while soft voices crying from the void guiding this being in its journey.

Eyes of two watch this display of action and follow…

In the distance a tower rises to the sky, a single solitary object upon the horizon. The creature with eyes of black continues to the tower, stopping at its base where it drops to its knees and waits, its breath coming in forceful stabs to the surrounding woods.

Eyes of two approaches from behind. Silently and swiftly they descend upon the kneeling creature. The eyes of black turn to face the coming eyes of two, its eyes widening in surprise, then relaxing.

With a swift movement, eyes of black nods towards the tower, eyes of two returns the gesture and runs to the tower, drawing out a misshapen stone. The sharp raps of the stone upon the tower screams to the surroundings. With baited breath, eyes of two looks around and steals its way towards the eyes of black, sharp pieces of obsidian in hand. Looking at each other, the eyes fade into the surrounding forest, waiting for the noonday sun to reach its peak.

As was always, as was told, as was forgotten, under the noonday sun, a warder and watcher leave the confines of their tower to bask in the offerings of the sun. As was this day, during a light rain that coats their bodies, they look to two pairs of eyes descending upon them with outstretched hands holding scattered pieces of obsidian.

Under the noonday sun the lifeless eyes of the warder and watcher scream their obscenities to the sky, their shattered and torn remains warming from the sun above.

Eyes of black stands above the corpses, and raises an opened mouth to capture the rain descending from the sky. Eyes of two sets about removing the steaming hearts of the warder and watcher, dropping them upon the ground, he scatters foul and misbegotten ashes upon the objects.

Eyes of black spits the rainwater into the gaping and jagged wounds of the warder and watcher and fills their chests with grass, grass that brings nausea if stared at to long.

Eyes of two places the hearts back into their owners. Then, as one, eyes of black and eyes of two move the bodies to a glade. In this glade, under a noonday sun, they bury the bodies and wait. They wait as the sun climbs the sky and descends into the night. They wait until this cycle repeats itself for twenty noondays.

Upon the twenty-first noonday a hand emerges form the burial pit. Soon another hand emerges, followed by two bodies. Eyes of black and eyes of two, stand with the noonday sun at their backs and watch the man and woman emerge from the pit.

Upon knees the man and woman look to the beautiful creatures, their eyes saucer round, with hands placed before their mouths, they try to mouth their first words.

Eyes of black raises a hand to silence them and gives voice, “I am love and this is knowledge.” From the woods seven other figures emerge.

Somewhere in a room of a white, a single, solitary tear flows to sheets of white as a picture frame falls upon its face…

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