10min Writes With a TaiSensei #5
Avree and Eve
Everix leaned against the alley wall, enveloped in wisps of shadow while watching the little nerd try her best at a game of soccer. He was only halfway through the gateway from his dream realm to her world, but decided to stay there a bit longer, free from her cautious eye.
Avree had kicked and missed the ball by a long shot. She pushed up her specs and stared confusedly at the rolling toy. He chuckled as she chased after it. See, she could have fun just fine on her own.
Everix pushed off the wall to show himself but a leafy hand grabbed hold of his wrist.
“Why do you need to check up on the human? She doesn’t need you.” The nymph’s arm slinked down Eve’s neck, curtaining over his collar bone from behind. Eve stretched away from her, disinterested.
“I made a promise. She’s my----- familiar remember? Even though she thinks I’m hers.”
Neela didn’t accept that answer. She floated over to his other ear with a different strategy of persuasion. “But she doesn’t need you. Not anymore. What point would there be in having her hang on to a figmentation of a dream? ...A half-human wisp, such as yourself?” Neela hovered in front of him, blocking his view of the girl. “You are something her world does not consider real... she cannot move on with her life if she stays tied to you.”
“But she’s...” Everix narrowed his gaze, recognizing the truth to her taunt, ”...she’s a friend.”
“Friend?” Neela lifted his chin, flower petals webbing between her fingers. She tunneled her murky black eyes into his, “Who are you kidding? You’ve fallen in love with that girl, Eve. But you cannot provide for her any more than these visits. You cannot be with her. Her world does not accept you as its visitor. It spits you out when you overstay your hours. How lonely do you think that would make her, if you two became united? If her lover could not stay to hear her cries? What would that mean for your children? Would they be half wisps as well? Would they ghost away out of her arms at birth? Perhaps out of her womb?”
Everix lost control of his Tempest then. He pushed her away with a surge of his power. It bubbled forth like warbled refractions of light against water, as if the air itself bled a purple light, and it hit Neela across her chest and face. A splatter of colour that seemed to carve through her via jagged lines fit for destruction.
Everix regretted the act immediately, but his words did not show it, “You’ve gone too far!” his hand shook with his voice, raw with unhinged might.
She’d turned away from his power, from the mark and the pain, as if she’d simply been slapped. But the effect cut deeper than that—emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Her hair wilted, three flower petals acting as bangs had turned from its blush-white hue to an ashen grey that fell from their roots. They crinkled to dust in the space between them, a hiss of silence parting them.
One of the joys of living in the dream realm meant imaginations felt more real than they ever should. He’d felt the weight of her words as if he’d lived through it within eight seconds. It scared him.
“I’m—I’m sorry, let me mend—”
Neela brushed her hand to the side, calling forth her own Tempest. A barrier formed between his hand and her carnaged face, smelling of cherry blossoms and river water. Circular ripples danced across the air, but her voice travelled through it just as strong as before.
“I go too far, Eve, because you do not understand otherwise. I speak cruelty for your own sake,” She shut her eyes, and let her body fade back into the dream realm, “for your human friend as well.”
Her voice lingered even after she’d disappeared, leaving him with a distraught mind and a clear view of the little nerd girl; the full-human familiar; Avree. His friend.
She’d been staring at her hand, probably because of the use of his Tempest, she must have felt the power surge—a rattle in her bones. Soon, instead of her palm, she stared directly towards Everix. Ignoring the soccer game and the screaming children in the field around her. She should not have been able to see or perceive him, in fact it was impossible. She could not have possibly known where he stood. And yet. Out of all the places she could have turned, her stare streamed through a metal fence, past pedestrians, across a street, into the shadows of a dark alley, and into his eyes.
The anticipation and hope and happiness she put into that stare was a painful awakening. Neela was right. He realized. It was cruel to let her depend on him. Anticipation would turn to disappointment; her hope to despair; happiness to agony.
Everix looked to his own hand then, still jittering beyond his control. It did not take desire for him to hurt the ones he cared for. It didn’t take willpower either. He took a step back, away from Avree and the border between their realms. He was the calamity.
A half-dream wisp could not be a dream at all. And if he wasn’t a dream, than he had to be a nightmare.
Her stare fell away as she began to look elsewhere, in search of him. Everix shook his head, taking one final look at Avree and her world before fleeing in the other direction.
He was her nightmare...
but he loved Avree best when she was able to sleep in peace.