Submission for The Oracle event.
Power for hearts.
To read Cael's side of the story --> [link][edit 2]
Word Count: 1,754
"Please, please come this way. No harm at all," the old woman beckoned, nudging him closer to the sphere. So this is the Oracle, huh? Clovis stepped closer and his eyelids began to grow heavy, so heavy, until they finally closed.
The world around him was blurry. Every color mixed into one until shapes started to emerge from the haze. "What? What is this?" The blond carefully took a step forward, reaching his arms out to feel around.
"You don't understand how I feel, do you!?" W-what? What's going on? A thin, red-haired male began to come into focus in-front of him. Despite the change in hair color, it looked just like Cael. Scarily so.
"C-Cael? Why are y--?" Why was his blood brother here? What exactly was this oracle-thing showing him?
"You know damn well why I'm upset! How could you just give in like that? To her of all people?"
"B-but I don't understand what you--" Words continued to flow out of his mouth. He didn't have any control anymore over what they were, they just came. Maybe… these are… memories?
The tall, lanky man stood there quietly, refusing to respond. Clovis shuffled slightly in his shoes. After letting out a sigh, the taller man took a step further and hugged him. W-what? Cael never hugs? This is a joke, right?
"I don't want to lose you… I don't want to lose… not to Father, not to Emmeline." That name. How did he know it? What was going on? Cael's random emotional outburst made him want to laugh until his insides became his outsides, but he didn't seem to have control of his actions at the moment.
---The world grew blurry again.---
What is it this time? More messed up scenarios? This is a really bad joke, ya know… The colors began to move and darker ones moved towards the front, eventually forming into the shape of a man in a business suit.
"As you know, you're brother is not physically well enough to take over this company. And so I am passing the rights down to you, the second eldest." The man stood there, speaking in a very ceremonial manner as other older men stood at his side, witnessing the moment.
"B-but I--" Clovis had tried to speak up for his brother's sake.
"And so in order to ensure further success of this company, we have made arrangements for you to marry the daughter of our biggest competitor. Therefore, we will be able to combine both companies and ensure prosperity in the future." The men around him nodded in response, mumbling words of praise to such a genius idea.
"So you're just going to choose who--" There was a knocking at the door and a pair of strangers walked in. A young blonde girl stepped in, looking up at Clovis through her lashes as she was escorted but an older man, around his own father's age.
"Nice to meet you," she said in a sweet voice. There was no sense of hesitation or shyness in her voice. In fact, she seemed to be quite happy about this arrangement. Clovis bowed his head in response, still unsure of what he was supposed to do now… T-that's Emmeline! That's my sister! Is this incest!?!? What the hell?!?!?
---He yawned as the scene shifted again. The colored smoke went up his nose and made him sneeze a few times.---
The soft sound of rain welcomed him as he saw a younger him and Cael. Completely decked out in the finest of child-sized hunting gear, plastic nets and sand buckets, they ran around giggling with their nets in hand. After landing in every puddle in the vicinity, they ran to a small creek, their raincoats flapping behind them.
"I want to find one THIS big!" Chibi Clovis giggled in excitement, holding his arms like he was bear hugging a tree. "Do you think we can find one?" He beamed up at his dearest older brother.
"No we can't." The younger boy's face froze. "We'll find one even bigger!" Cael puffed out his chest and acted like the perfect big brother. They spent hours there, playing in the mud, catching frogs barely bigger than their fists. A noticeably larger toad sat on the other side of the bank, staring straight at Clovis as if taunting him. The blond boy narrowed his eyes and began to reach as far as he could in its direction. His stubby little arms barely made it half of the distance, so he leaned out over the water. He wanted that pudgy frog so badly. So so badly.
"Hey! Watch it!" Cael grabbed his arm just as he was beginning to fall into the water, only to end up falling in with him. The sun peered out from behind the clouds and smiled down on them. The two boys sat there silently for a moment, unsure of whether to be upset, happy, or feel nothing at all.
"Hehe you got mud on your nose!" Clovis laughed as he pointed at the red-head. Cael sat there silently before bursting into laughter with his brother when the frog jumped and took up residence atop Clovis' head.
They went home soon after, giggling all the way. But even that stopped when their mother rushed out of the house yelling at them. "How could you be so dumb, Cael! You know you can't go play in the rain! You're supposed to be in bed today. Doctors orders!" Even with all the harsh words, her fussing was obviously that of motherly worry. She kissed the older boy's forehead before sending him inside wrapped up in a towel. She couldn't help worrying about him so much. His complexion alone showed how sickly the boy really was. But in the end, he was still a child at heart, who enjoyed chasing frogs in the rain with his brother and best friend.
"And you! You've got mud all in your hair! What were you doing?" She whined as she ran her fingers through his light hair.
"FROG HUNTING!" he replied excitedly. "We found one THIS BIG!" He reached his arms like he was trying to hug the entire house with his childish arms. He sneezed and a stream of snot sat there on his beaming face, and he ran up and gave his mother a big hug around her knees. I must have really loved my mother, huh? The woman looked just like the mother he knew. Why was everyone reappearing in these dreams?
---Colors swirled in his face and made him choke on the smoke a few times as they formed new shapes.---
Clovis shielded his face from the strong wind as he emerged on the roof of the corporation building. Something suspicious had been going on, and he'd followed them all the way up here. Cael and Emmeline stood alone on the rooftop. From where Clovis was standing, the only face he could see was Emmeline's, but what scared him about what he saw was her sneering grin.
"Did you feel so threatened that you had to drag me up here just to let out all of the mean words you've kept hidden until now?" the girl chided in her annoying clear voice. The young man simply grimaced in return, both at her comment and in an effort to keep his body from falling over. Why… are they fighting? That's not nice…
"Just shut up. You understand perfectly well why I hate you." His words were sharp, and made Clovis jump slightly in response. The blond man took a few steps towards his brother and fiancee. Why couldn't they just get along? Why did it have to be like this. The angry voices grew louder and louder until Cael finally lost it and pushed the small girl as hard as he could. Her back hit the railing and then her body began to slowly fall backwards. She gasped as she tried to right herself but Cael's finger was pushing against the middle of her forehead.
"Why does it have to be you. Why did you have to come into our lives. You've ruined everything…" he said softly as a similarly scary grin appeared on his face. "But what if, the young heiress had mysteriously committed suicide, unable to deal with the pressures of an arranged marriage to a strange man several years older than her? What headlines would the newspapers say, I wonder~" His finger poked harder against her skull and she began to slip quietly off the edge of the building. Just as she had seemed to give up and surrendered herself to the circumstances, another hand came forward and grabbed her arm.
"What are you doing, Cael?!? You're not actually trying to kill her are you?!?" He couldn't help it. He had panicked. And as a result of his poor thinking, he began to fall over the railing with her. His brother reached out and grabbed his shoulder, keeping him from falling. But Clovis angrily shook his hand off, screaming, "I can't trust you anymore. Are you trying to push me too?!?"
But just as he said that, the last part of his body passed the point of no return. "CAEL!" This time, he was the one reaching for his brother. He couldn't die now. He didn't understand what was troubling his brother. He hadn't gotten to apologize for stealing his toothbrush that morning. He hadn't gotten to go on that trip with him that he'd been promised. The tips of their fingers brushed against one another, but… Well that was a sucky ending… Is that really how I died? Just like that? What kind of idiot wrote this story?
"Hey, Cael! You wouldn't believe the kind of dream I had! You were there!"
"Woahwoahwoah! I don't want to hear about any kind of dream like that! That's weird!"
"What? No! Eww… well… I mean-- It was about you, Emmeline, me, and our parents."
"Our parents? You must still be sleepy. We're not actually related, you know."
"B-but we were! And you had red hair, not black! And there were these frogs, and a marriage, and these weird business guys, and then I fell…"
"Fell from what? I-it was only a dream after all right? It's not like I had the same dream or anything… Ack! What are you doing! Stop hugging me like that!"
"… I'm sorry… I wuv you…"
"… Uh… I'm sorry too…"
The story between these two gets progressively weirder every time...
I have a second drawing planned as well, but we'll see if I ever get around to it.
Clovis & Emmeline Hansen ©
Cael Devereux ©