Monday, May 9, 2011

Chapter 1: Part 1

Arky sensed the dawn coming before it broke into the sky.

With eyes still closed, he felt the forest begin to stir around him, and the slumber begin to dissipate from the minds of the townspeople around him.

Arky smiled with the realization that, while he technically did not have a gender, most people tended to refer to him using the male set of pronouns. There were a few who used the female set. He had taken to referring to himself with the male set for the most part, mostly for conveniences sake. Iris on the other hand, tended to encounter the female set of pronouns, despite being in the same uncharacterizable boat as Arky. She had taken to referring to herself with the female set for the most part.

And speaking, er... thinking, of Iris, they were supposed to meet again today, for the first time in several months.

Arky sensed that one of his hosts had finished their morning ritual and was preparing to check in on him. He slowly let gravity regain a hold on him until he came to rest on the floor, and opened his eyes. He thought about forestalling the polite knock that his caretaker was planning to give before calling, but decided to let the courtesy be shown.

Sure enough, Mick knocked on the door with the precise politeness cultured in the youth of this town from childhood.

"Come in, Mick." said Arky, just loudly enough to be polite, but not loudly enough that anyone but Mick could hear him.

Mick was only 2 years old, which by the standards of many creatures was a young age. However, most shadowkind reached adulthood by the age of 5. Shadowkind didn't reproduce often though, and Mick was actually one of the two members of the first generation of shadowkind to be born, unlike his parents, who had been created about 20 years ago by none other than Arky and Iris.

"Arkiel, sir?" said Mick in his usual overly polite manner.

Arky sighed. "Mick, I've told you before, you can drop the sir, and you can just call me Arky."

"But sir..."

"At least do one or the other. We've known each other for 2 years now. You don't have to be polite to people you know well, because they know you care anyway."

"Alright, Arkieeee- Sir, I can't do that, it just feels wrong."

Arky moved toward the door and patted Mick on the back as he passed him. "You'll get used to it."

They stepped into the cloister and Mick plodded out behind Arky and caught up to him.

"I hope you've enjoyed your stay here. I'll miss you when you're gone."

Arky smiled at Mick. "Thanks, Mick, I'll miss you guys too."

"When will you be back next?"

"I'll be back when YOU learn to call me Arky," Arky laughed. He looked up toward the end of the hallway and yelled out toward it. "Oh hi there, Loost!"

Loost was the leader of this particular shadowkind village, as well as the leader of all the shadowkind in general. Of course, there were only 23 shadowkind worldwide at this point, and only 7 in this village, but there were many other creatures that inhabited the village, primarily raccoons, foxes, squirrels, and humans, who the shadowkind presided over to ensure their well being.

Loost was a good choice of leader, Arky thought. She was just, and kind hearted. Her only problem was the tendency to want to show off her abilities. Even now, Arky did not need to actively search for her existence to find her, she was walking down the hallway radiating power as if she were a piece of the sun.

Sure enough, she turned the corner just as Arky finished calling out to her. "Hello Arky," she nodded, "I trust you've enjoyed your stay."

"You know I did, Loost. It's been fantastic as always."

"Are you sure you have to leave? I know you and Iris always go off during this time of year, but the townspeople..."

"I know, I know. I'll miss you all, and I'm grateful for your effort to make my stay pleasant. But I really do have to attend to this."

They shook hands. Arky waved at the townspeople in the streets from the balcony. They had all gathered outside, knowing that this was the day he was going to leave. He could make out some of the townspeople he knew personally, and Ha! Little Eiga had bothered climbing up to the roof to wave at him.

He amplified his voice. "Thanks everyone! I just want to let you all know that I've had a fantastic stay! I'll be back again next year!"

The townspeople cheered. He decided to give them a little show before he left, and he floated into the sky and called lightning to him from around. Then he vanished, dissociating himself from that location and heading for the moon.

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