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End of Year News (December 2017)

Thu Dec 28, 2017 3:57 am by Adrian

(It's been one year since I made a news thread, oops)

Merry Christmas/Festivus/whatever holiday you do or do not celebrate!

2017 was a pretty busy year IRL for most of us - according to forum statistics, our busiest month was in June with 1671 total posts, meaning our post rate has been a little …

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Forum Bug

Wed Dec 28, 2016 3:18 am by Adrian

Hi all,

We're aware of a peculiar forum glitch that's causing some subforums to be locked.

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Discord News/Update Test

Thu Dec 08, 2016 1:35 am by Adrian

Just a news, update test. Trying to get this thing to work.

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[Roleplaying Thread] Infinity's Row: Unbroken

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Re: [Roleplaying Thread] Infinity's Row: Unbroken

Post by Michael DeathFlame on Mon Jul 17, 2017 4:26 pm

Yupik: I'm glued to the ground. That's what it feels like when I wake up, and that's what I tell myself after I can’t stand up. Except, no, glued isn't really the right word. It feels more like I'm being crushed, like the battle yesterday, the torturing, and... well, all of that's finally pushed me all the way down, and I can't get back up. I just, I can't. So I keep lying on the bedroom floor, lie there and watch the sunlight begin to creep up the floor of my room.

"No, it's not your room anymore. You're leaving this place and the people along with it. This house is no longer your home, and the Row is no longer your family. Today you lose both of those things." They laugh before I even get a word in. "No, We were wrong by saying that. The Row was never your family, and thus they were never yours to lose in the first place."

You're wrong.
The resistance sparks bits of life into my body again, and I use whatever drops of energy I have to curl and uncurl my fingers. They were. What happened yesterday doesn't change that. That much I know for a fact. I've always been closest to Natasha, Gentry, and Ebony, but I still care about everyone else too. Yes, I felt hurt when I realized how few of them went out to look for me, and even worse when I was recovering here alone. But spirits, we went through hell together. We fought gods and witches and armies of zombies. And no matter which way I went they went with me. They fought for me, and I fought for them. I loved them.

But... no, They're right. They're not my family anymore. Family hurts each other, yeah, but what happened and how it happened... it hurts too much. I'm not sure who was right yesterday, Sierra and Natasha, or everyone else. Maybe the Row was right, maybe they weren't. Maybe we were all wrong and there wasn't a right way, no matter how long we looked for it.

But they're going somewhere that I can't follow anymore, or maybe they've always been going that way and I didn't realize it until now. They, no, we killed Ebony. But after that they said they needed to, that there was no other way around it, that it was the only right decision and anyone who thought otherwise was wrong. They acted like killing someone like that was some black and white decision. And that scares me. That really scares me. I think the Row is full of good people, genuinely kind and brave people. I think they all want to do the right thing.

But if you always just tell yourself that you're the hero of the story, you might not realize that you've become the villain. And I don't want to risk that. I can't risk that. So I need to go. As much as I love them, I can't be a part of their family anymore.

If I didn't cry away all my tears last night, I think I'd start crying now. But I don't. I just lie here and feel the pain of that decision throb through me. Because I thought I'd finally found a family again, a family that'd trust me and love me even with everything that's wrong with me. Losing that hurts... walking away from that hurts even more. My legs and ribs and ankles and arm and heart all remind me how cruel and empty the world can be. I don't want to go back into it alone again, I don't, I-

I'm too tired to jump when the door opens, but my head does lift just a bit when it does. I can't see the person from here, but I don't need to. "I'm sorry I'm taking forever," I mutter. "I'll be ready to go in a bit."

Despite my hopes I can see her feet moving around towards me, rounding the bed before she comes right into view. She's, well, really sweaty, and she smells sweaty too, but if she's tired she's not showing it. She takes me in for a second before she leans up against the frame of my bed. "Well, I'm ready whenever you are. Pretty sure Natasha and Miranda are too." Maybe she expects me to say something, but I don't. After a few seconds she licks her lips, turning her attention to the window instead. But she keeps talking to me anyway. "It's a good day to leave. Weather should be nice. Makes flying suck less." Her eyes flick back to me before they go back to the window. "So... yeah. That's that."

"Got it." I don't know what else to say. I don't want to get into another fight with her about the Row, and I definitely don't want to talk about last night. And about Ebony... Sierra was pretty upset last night. She probably still is, but I don't think she wants to show that. So I just say what comes to mind first. "I'm sorry."

Her face tightens just a bit, but she keeps her eyes set outside. "‘Bout what?"

"I mean, about fighting last night, but everything else, too." Finally I force my good arm under me, shakily pushing myself up so that I'm slouching against the wall. "Everything that's happened since, you know. I just, I thought we finally found something. And it just all kind of fell apart and blew up and it just, well… I'm sorry."

Sierra's head bounces up and down in a rapid nod a few times, and instead of looking at me or out the window she just closes her eyes instead. "Yeah." Her arms criss-cross around herself, her hands clenching on tight to her elbows. "Yeah, I get it. I'm sorry too." She takes in a big bit of air before her eyes open again, and this time she finally looks at me. "I fucking hate this." Her eyes and voice are edged, but that eases away when she keeps going on. "I wish I could fix all of this, you know? Just make everything better again. I just..." Her eyes snap shut again, and one of her hands break away from her to curl into a fist. But her fist just sits there in front of her, shaking a bit until she drops it at her side. "Yeah. I'm sorry too."

I try finding the right words, but my sister's quicker than me. Her eyes open again a half-second before her mouth does. "But hell, not everything's blowing up. Gentry and Elias are back. Miranda and Natasha are coming with us." I don’t know how much she believes herself, but she doesn’t seem to care.

She crosses the space between us in a stride and a half. "And I got you and you got me." I grip onto her clasped hand as tight as I can as she hefts me up. Even after I balance myself out she holds on. "And there's not nothing that'll ever change that." She holds my stare and my grip, and I don’t let go of either.

"I know." With everything that's happened it feels wrong to smile, so I don't. Instead I just squeeze her hand back before letting go. "I'll be right out. I just, uh, need a minute."

And that's what I get. Within a few seconds I'm alone in the room again, everything around me feeling so completely and utterly empty, the kind of emptiness that tries to suck everything out of you. With a hand up on the wall I slowly move my head from right to left, doing my best to take in every little detail of this place.

I stop when my eyes settle on the mirror. Most of me wants to look away, but I look on anyway. And, well, I see myself, and I sure don't look good. At first I focus on the bruises on my face, the scrapes and scars on my legs, the bandages on my arms. But, no, there's more there. "More where? You're a walking injury. Show Us an inch of unbroken skin."

That's not what I meant.
I kind of am one walking injury, but there's more than that. The bruises and cuts, they mean pain, yeah. They're there because people hurt me. But they mean something else too. Because the redness and swolleness are there because I'm still alive; the bruises are colored that way because they're fading away; and the bandages are all there so that I can be better again. I might be broken all over, but that might not be forever.

Careful not to fall down, I let go of the wall and slowly, carefully raise my hands up to my head. I bow just a little so that my fingers can catch underneath the rim of my beanie, and then straighten back up as I loosen it off. The bruise on the left side of my face runs all the way up to the top of my head, and it looks like I have a fresh scrape from yesterday's battle. But I don't pay attention to that.

It's barely there, but the red fuzz is unmistakable. I run a hand over my head, and for the first time in weeks I feel hair brush against my fingers.

I wipe away the tears before they fall down my face. Somehow I find the smile that I couldn't get when Sierra was in the room. So many things are going wrong, and I'm sure a lot of them'll keep going wrong. But I'll keep going anyway, and things'll get better. My wounds are healing and my hair's back and I'll get better. I'll be okay.

No. We'll be okay. I glance out the window, looking down at Miranda, Sierra, and Natasha. We'll be together. So we'll be okay.

I don't look back when I walk out of our room, walking away from the place that I'd called home for the past month or two. I'll miss it. And I’ll miss my Row family.

But I think I found another family. And this time, I don't think that's going to change.

~*~Seven Years Later~*~

I wake up to screams, sharp screams that rip straight through the dark and down my throat, and I bolt up from bed and my mouth's open and nothing's coming out-

There's a hand at my wrist. "You're okay, hey, it's just the kids, Yupik, it's okay-" I freeze at the touch in the dark, but as her voice softens and my nightmare ends and the walls stop crushing me I feel myself come back into reality. It was just a dream. My family's okay and I'm okay because it was just a dream. Natasha's here and she's okay and it was all just a dream. Except I can still hear another scream, crying...

Oh. Oh, right. "The girls," I breathe out, "right, right." I look over at the glare of the alarm clock. 2:34 in the morning. When I go to work I'll feel exhausted, but right now I'm as wired as the clock. I have a feeling the girls won't be the only thing keeping me up. "Alright. Alright, I got it."

Natasha's face slowly starts fading into view in the dark. It's still tough to see her, but she looks tired. Can't blame her. "No, let me. You have morning shift tomorrow, you need sleep."

"No, it's fine, you got up last time." I fumble in the dark for her hand, trying to keep my shakiness in check as best I can. "And I had a, a bad dream, anyway, about, uh, I don't rememb-" Kendra's crying jumps up another pitch, quite literally tugging me to my feet. "Uh, I got it, I'm fine, please sleep, I'm fine, promise." I just catch Natasha's weary nod before I start bumping through our bedroom, fumbling my way to our kids room.

"Yes, please, bring Us to the kiddies. We're very good at silencing children."

Shut it.
I got our bedroom door open and my glasses on my face and I half-fall into the hallway before jogging forward. I know I shouldn't be running, not in the dark, especially when I'm not this shaky, but I hate hearing them scared. It's worth stepping on a toy or three to get there a little quicker, and plus, my heart's going a mile a minute, so I might as well run.

I slow down just a bit when I get to their door, groping for the handle as I call out, "Don't worry, it's Daddy, it's me-" When the door opens there's a flash of motion, something coming at me and my lungs collapse-

I grunt when it, no, when she runs into me and clings onto my legs. "I saw it, I-I saw it!" Ebbie's not as hysterical as Kendra, but I can still feel every bit of her small body shaking against me. "A-A-And Ken did t-t-too and it-it's-" She points over to the corner of the room before burying her head into my leg. "P-Please make it go Daddy, I don't like it, I don't I don't!"

"Alright, alright." By now Kendra's toddled her way over to me too, so when I kneel down I can wrap my arms around both of them. I force my arms not to shake, because both of them are shaking too much for me to do it too. "I'm here now, I'm here. See? It's just the three of us. No monsters here." But being this close to both of them is making the walls feel tighter. We’re okay. I’m okay. Worry about them, not you.

Thankfully I’m very good at worrying about my children, so it’s not too difficult to focus on them more. Ebbie doesn’t look like she’s crying anymore, and Kendra's crying is calming a bit. But they both look scared, Kendra in particular. Her words barely come past her bobbling lips when she says, "B-but but, it just hide! I-I-It still here!"

"Yeah!" Ebbie turns back to the rocking chair in the corner of the room, letting go of me for a second to jab a finger in that direction. "Tell it to go away, Daddy We don’t like it!"

"Alright. Alright, I got it, okay?" I move past my daughters. Even though I know there's nothing here, there's this kind of tightness in my chest, like I was waiting for a zombie or a Conduit to jump out at me. Stop it. You're not having a panic attack, not in front of them. I push the rocking chair back and forth and look behind it, and when I’m done with the chair I look under the table next to it. I find nothing. When I turn I see that Kendra's got a tight grip on her older sister's hand; Ebbie looks like she's trying really hard not to look too frightened. "She must've learned that from her father."

Shut up.
"See?” I sit back down on the rocking chair, raising my arms out to my side. “It must’ve run away. It’s gone now.” My two daughters look at each other before Ebbie takes a cautious step forward. With Kendra in tow Ebbie tip-toes forward a few steps before skipping and leaping the last bit. With a grunt I manage to pick both of them up, propping Ebbie up on my knee and lying Kendra against my chest. By now, both of them have stopped crying. “It won’t come back ever again. Monsters get scared of Mommy and Daddy.”

Kendra seems more than satisfied, but Ebbie doesn’t look so sure. Her palms wipe the tears off her face, but her big blue eyes stay glued on me the whole time. “But, but, don’t you and Mommy ever get scared? You know, monsters, they can be really big and, and mean, too. They’re really bad.”

“Oh, I know. They’re really mean. But they’re not so scary when we’re all together. When you, Kendy, Mommy, and me are all here, they’re scared of us. That’s why they won’t ever bother you.” Ebbie started shaking her head before I even finished. “No, I promise. They’ll never hurt you.”

“No, not that!” She crosses her arms and looks down at the ground. “They run away from you, not us! Not me and Ken! Be-because you and Mommy don’t ever get scared, but we do!”

“Really scared,” Kendra affirms with a whimper.

Chaos’s laughter rips through me, and for a second all I can is sit still and wait for Them to pass. Breathe I command myself, and that I do. I rub Kendra’s back with one hand and scoot Ebbie closer to my lap with the other. “No, it’s not that honey, that’s not why. Mommy and I, we aren’t afraid of the monsters, yeah.” And we aren’t afraid of anything else too. We never get scared and we’re always strong and always brave and we’ll always, always protect you. That’s what I wish I could say, and maybe on another night I could. But the anxiety from whatever nightmare I had is still biting at my throat and I just can’t tell that big of a lie tonight. “But, we, Mommy and me, we get scared too, sometimes.”

Ebbie has absolutely no idea what to say to that, but Kendra’s face pops right out from her spot against my armpit. “But why? You and Mommy so big! Why you get scared?”

“Yeah sweetie, Mommy and I are big, but we’re still like you and your sister. You know? We’re just like you. We laugh and sing and play, and a lot of the time we get happy, or excited, or a little bit silly.” I prod a few of my fingers into their sides gently, each of them jumping and giggling just a bit at the touch. For a second I don’t need to force a smile; when both of them move in and lie down against me, it just comes so naturally. But after a while it fades away. “And… but, uh, but sometimes we feel other things. We get mad, or upset, or sometimes, yeah, sometimes we get scared, too.”

Ebbie props her chin up against my chest and looks straight up at me. “But if monsters don’t make you scared, what does?”

“Well, I’m scared of do- I mean, I’m scared of bad dogs, the mean ones, they scare me sometimes. And then there’s…” There’s lots of things I’m scared of. Blindness, caves, zombies, bears, panthers, Them. Things in the dark that I can’t see, voices that have no source. Being touched or feeling things in certain places, even if it’s only Natasha who’s doing it. Nightmares that I can’t remember. People that I can’t save. My family being in danger. When the walls move in like they’re doing now.

“There’s… there’s some things out there that can be pretty scary.” I close my eyes for a second and hold them just a little bit tighter. “But when I’m with both of you or Mommy or Aunt Sierra, when we’re here together I don’t get so scared.” I open my eyes again and look down at my daughters. “Because I know we’ll always be together and we’ll always love each other. That’ll never change. So everything else isn’t so scary.”

I think Kendra’s inching bit by bit to sleep, but Ebbie still doesn’t look so sure. “And even if something’s really, really, really scary?”

“Even if it’s really really really scary. Because there’s nothing in the world that’d ever scare me more than how much I love you.” I bend down and kiss both of them, and when I come back up Ebbie’s smiling back at me. “I love both of you more than you’ll ever know.”

Ebbie lowers her chin down, letting her cheek rest up against me. “I love you too Daddy.”

“Love too,” Kendra adds in sleepily.

Slowly, tenderly, I run my hands up their backs, rocking gently back and forth in the chair. I wait a minute before I start singing the first song that comes to mind.

“Lullaby, and good night, you are my delight.
I’ll protect you from harm, and you’ll wake in my arms.
Sleepyheads, close your eyes, for I’m right beside you.
Guardian angels are near, so sleep without fear.”

Even though I left my nightmare a while ago my insides are still shaking and the walls are still pressing. But I keep my hands still. For them, I keep myself ready and strong, embracing and loving.

“Lullaby, and sleep tight, my darlings sleeping,
On sheets white as cream, with heads full of dreams.
Sleepyheads, close your eyes, for I’m right beside you,
Lay thee down now and rest, may your slumber be blessed.”

I feel like the whole world is waiting, lurking, ready to cave in the ceiling and flatten me once and for all. I don’t feel as strong as I want to, don’t feel as brave as I should be, and don’t feel as unbroken as I once hoped I’d be. But I don’t stop singing.

“Go to sleep, little ones, think of butterflies in spring.
Go to sleep, little ones, think of sunny bright mornings.
Go to sleep, little ones, for you are my lights,
Go to sleep, safe from harm, and wake up in my arms.”

They’re both asleep now, and I think they’ll sleep through the night. Me, on the other hand, I don’t think I’ll be that lucky. I’ll be awake for a while. Maybe eventually my heart will slow down, maybe the dream will completely leave me, and maybe this lullaby’ll put me to sleep too.

Or maybe it won’t. It probably won’t. Because even after all these years, I still feel broken in some places. And by the looks of it, that might not change soon. It might not change at all.

But I don’t care if that never changes. I used to care, but I don’t anymore. I know I can make it until daylight, no matter how anxious it makes me. I wasn’t lying to my daughters when I told them I’m stronger around them. Because when I’m with them, or Sierra, or Natasha, they help seal in those gaps. In small, tiny ways, they hold me together.

“Hush darling ones, sleep through the night.”

And even if sometimes they can’t hold me together, I’ll do it myself. I’ll do it for them.

“Sleep through the night.”

I might not be unbroken. But for them, I’ll be whole. And that’ll never change.

“Sleep through the night.”

I lean my head back against the chair and rock back and forth, back and forth, holding my children against me as I stare through the night.


Thanks so much to Lissy for the signature!
Michael DeathFlame
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Join date : 2013-05-28
Posts : 2872
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Re: [Roleplaying Thread] Infinity's Row: Unbroken

Post by Hime on Mon Jul 17, 2017 9:29 pm

I’m sorry.

For what, dear?

Fe’s eye reopened as she found her limp body surrounded by a seemingly endless darkness. Everything was silent, and everything was empty. But she did hear her voice… Somewhere out there. Tears moistened her cheek as she stretched her hand out, watching how it outlined against the blankness before her. It was trembling ever so slightly, like her lower lip.

Before her, a slender and lovely body began to form; within seconds, Fe was greeted by the loving smile of her mother for the first time. She simply stared through her tears, unsure of what to make of it.

I was weak. I gave into the evil that I promised I would never let in.

Their fingers interlocked, and there was a trace of warmth within that moment.

Fe’s mother reached towards the left side of her face with her free hand, gently taking hold of the eyepatch. She then removed it with ease, revealing yet another tear filled turquoise eye underneath it.

Her face was whole again.

You were blinded, played like a puppet in a show.

Fe gasped, lifting both of her hands to her face, feeling the tears spill uncontrollably out of her eyes. The woman before her began to pull her close until they were in a gentle embrace, and for the first time in years, Fe was graced with the warmth brought forth by love. Her heart beat steadily in her chest, as though she were once again alive. And for a moment, she was only a lost little girl in the arms of her mother.

I don’t think he wanted to be evil.

Her mother pulled away from the embrace, but kept her hands upon Fe’s shoulders, smiling sadly at the sentiment that was just made.

He faced so much pain in his lifetime that his heart betrayed him. He went down the path of darkness and solitude, for he found solace there.

Slowly, but without a trace of hesitation, Fe’s mother put a kiss upon her daughter’s forehead.

You were never meant for that path.

And just like that, the body of Fe’s mother faded away, leaving the young Zenh’aliem alone once again in the crippling darkness. She gasped, and it echoed forever into the nothingness before her. Dread settled like a dust in the pit of her stomach – dread of being lonely again.

“Wait!” she called, her voice suddenly external. “Don’t leave me!”

Beneath her feet, she felt the ground suddenly become solid. Her body had weight again, as though she were once again alive. The emptiness remained, however… That is, until a distant figure began to materialize. Allowing the crippling loneliness that encased her heart to encourage her, she sprinted forward towards them, holding out her arms.


The figure turned around. As she grew closer, she could make out a number of handsome features, including a nicely shaped jaw and glittering cerulean blue eyes. But before Fe could drink in his features too well, a mask began to shroud his face, injecting uneasiness into her stomach. He held out his arms as though he were expecting an embrace. In that moment, Fe’s foot caught, launching her forward and downward.

He caught her with ease. Suddenly, she no longer had the energy to stand. She glanced down, and to her horror, her body was fading away into nothingness, second by second. Fe began to sob again, helpless in the arms of this strange boy.

“I want to be forgiven,” she bawled, squeezing her eyes shut. “I want to start over. I want to be fixed.”

The boy held her until the only part of her that remained was her head. He then took it into his hands, staring through his mask at her tear-filled turquoise eyes, all traces of coldness and evil within them gone. It was difficult to believe that this girl was once called Fe Zenh’aliem.

“I promise…” The boy began to speak, watching with faint sadness as the last of the girl began to fade away.

“One day, you will be unbroken.”



✹ D E V I ✹
i don't want you
to see me
the way i see myself.

Join date : 2013-05-19
Posts : 8655
Age : 19
Location : N'al Ren

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