This story is not related to the prompt.
People featured in this story:
Ethan as Ethan
Celeste as Celeste
Wolfie as Treasure (just a small mention since they're dead)
Palak as Palak (just a small mention since they're dead)
Kayla as Nina (just a small mention since they're dead)
Jose as Luke
Lillian as Lillian (just a small mention since they're dead)
Felicity as Felicity
Ivy as Zoe
I took pictures online and edited them into certain characters. UPDATED: FULL LIST. Animal parts are not featured because google can't really help me with that XD. Lmk if you want me to do your character from ANY reedsy cast, just lmk what they look like! :)
---- Harper --------- Celeste ------------ Ethan -------------- Treasure -------
------- Palak ---------- Nina --------------- Luke --------------- Lillian ------
------- Zoe --------------- Felicity ------------ Draco ------------- Cirah -------
------ Varsha ------------- Wish ------------ Rainhart --------------- Sia --------
-------- Liz ---------------- Azazel --------------- Nainika --------
----- Scarlett ----------- Achlys ------
Someone was caressing my hair. I opened my eyes, my mother’s bright yellow eyes smiling down at me. I was laying in some sort of bed, nothing but darkness surrounding me.
“Mother…” I whispered. Her gentle grey wings brushed against my arm, a sad look on her face.
“What’s wrong?” I asked. A single tear made her way down her cheek as blood red eyes appeared behind her. Spider legs emerged from the darkness, a scorpion tail following behind. Mother’s wings were ripped from her body, the rest of her unmoving. An excruciating pain filled my body, centered around my back.
“I love you…” whispered Mother as her body disintegrated into the air.
“No!” I cried out, reaching towards her, then stopping as a shooting pain went down my arm. I watched helplessly as the rest of her body disappeared, her last words echoing in my ears. I love you…
Azazel lifted his scorpion tail, his face shifting. Celeste’s yellow eyes appeared on his face, glistening with tears.
“It’s your fault my brother is dead! You watched as he ripped the wings off my body!” she screamed. The scorpion tail thrust down on me, and I cried out in pain as the face shifted once more. Treasure’s deep blue eyes replaced Celeste’s. Fur sprouted on his face as his nose protruded outwards into the snout of a wolf.
“You could’ve saved me, but you didn’t!” she shouted. Another stab, another cry of pain.
Palak came next, cackling, her hyena ears twitching.
“You left me to die!” she yelled. Another stab.
“You killed me without a care!” shouted Nina. Stab.
“I lost both of my sisters and you did nothing!” cried Luke. Stab.
“You watched as the blood drained from my body!” screamed Lillian. Stab.
I curled into a fetal position, sobbing, begging them to stop.
“Harper…” came Ethan’s voice. I looked up to find Azazel and his constantly shifting face gone. Ethan stood in his place, a sad look in his golden green eyes.
“Ethan…” I choked out. “I’m sorry.”
“I know...” he said. I noticed the blood coming from his head and his leg, staining his reddish-brown hair. He pulled something out from behind his back, and my breath caught in my throat as I saw the gleaming blade of a knife.
“No…” I whispered. “Please.”
He silently lifted the knife, a blank expression on his face.
“We sacrificed so much for you, and you repay us with death,” he said, bringing the knife down on my body.
I woke up with a start, gasping for breath, the bed I was lying in soaked with sweat. I instantly cried out in pain, shutting my eyes as little red dots formed beneath my eyelids.
Zoe rushed in followed by Felicity, a handful of feathers in Zoe’s hand.
She raised a single feather and blew on it, then rubbed it on my abdomen, yellow dust floating in the air. Felicity lifted something in her hand, and when I saw the gleaming bit of metal, I screamed. I thrashed my hands as my wounds opened up again, fresh blood staining the sheets. Zoe held down my arms as Felicity stuck in the shot, and almost instantly, I floated back into unconsciousness.
This time, the dream’s weren’t as bad. Memories of my mother floated in and out of my mind, and occasionally, Ethan would make an appearance. When I woke up again, the pain was gone, leaving behind a slight throbbing. I slowly opened my eyes to find Ethan sitting next to me, snoring slightly. I looked around the room and recognized it as the one I was in when I first came here. I glanced at the familiar claw marks on the leafy window cover, smiling at the memory. The smile instantly dropped from my list as the rest of my memories came flooding back, and I silently started crying.
“What’s wrong?” said Ethan. I turned to find him awake and sitting up, concern etched on his face. I shook my head, blinking away the tears. Ethan lifted a glass of water to my lips, but I pushed it away. I didn't want to drink. I didn’t want to eat. I just wanted Ethan here with me. Ethan got up from the chair and I held fast to his hand, pleading him to stay. The simple movement made me dizzy.
“I’m just getting Felicity and Zoe,” said Ethan, pointing towards the door. I shook my head, scared of being left alone.
“I won’t be gone long,” said Ethan. He leaned forward and gave me a quick peck on my forehead, and I released my grip, too shocked to protest. I fingered the place he kissed me, warmth spreading through my body. My abdomen and back ached, my head muddled and foggy. Ethan walked into the room, Felicity and Zoe following behind. Ethan sat back down in his chair while Zoe brushed some more feathers on my abdomen. Felicity reached into a drawer and hesitated.
“We have to give her the shots,” whispered Felicity to Zoe.
Zoe shook her head. “You saw how she reacted last time.”
“But it's the only thing keeping the poison from reaching her heart. It’s already reached her brain.”
Zoe hesitated, then nodded her head. “Ethan, will you help Harper flip over? We need to apply some medicine to her back.” Zoe’s white dove wings fluttered nervously, Felicity’s deer hooves tapping lightly on the ground.
Ethan nodded, bending down over me to lift me off of the bed. I felt his warm breath on my neck as I grasped onto him. He gently lifted me up, and I cried out in pain. I clenched my teeth, hot tears streaming down my cheeks. I glanced down to find the bandages on my abdomen stained with fresh blood.
“Sorry,” muttered Ethan as Felicity helped lay me back down on the bed. I clutched the pillow, burying my face into it to hide my tears. I didn’t like this, I didn’t like any of this. I hated feeling so weak and helpless. Felicity flicked her wrist, and a flower instantly bloomed from the floor. She bent down and plucked it, crushing it in her hands and putting it in a small cup. She added some kind of liquid to it and mixed it, resulting in a deep pink salve. She gently rubbed it against my back, and I sighed at the instant relief.
“How are you feeling?” asked Ethan as Felicity fiddled with something across the room.
I simply stared at him, exasperated.
“Ah, right. Probably not great…” his cheeks flushed with embarrassment. He glanced at Felicity, knowing she was out of my line of sight.
“Not very talkative right now, are you?” asked Ethan, obviously trying to distract me. I shrugged slightly, then winced as the pain shot down my back again. Ethan caressed my hair, asking me question after question as I heard hushed whispers behind me. I felt a sudden pinching pain on my back, and I immediately tensed up. A yelp escaped my lips, as Felicity finished giving the shot. I glanced behind me and saw a glimpse of the metal, and I started to panic. The shot was not a dagger, gleaming and ready to strike me. I tried to get up, but vines had wrapped around my arms and legs, causing me to panic more. I screamed, hearing Azazel’s laugh in my ear.
You killed them!
It’s your fault!
They could still be alive if it wasn't for you!
You’ve caused nothing but problems!
We never should’ve saved you!
I love you…
The last sentence echoed over and over in my head as another shot was inserted into my arm and I swam back into dreamland.
When I woke up, Ethan wasn’t there. Celeste stood in his place, bandages wrapped around her chest, her antennas drooping.
“It feels like you got ripped of your freedom,” whispered Celeste. “You remember all those times you could fly free, feeling the wind on your face. You never really know how much something means to you until it’s gone…”
She choked down a sob. “I miss her. Sometimes I still hear her laugh. I constantly think of what I could’ve done to save her… Draco’s dead. Palak’s dead. Lillian’s dead. So is Varsha, Treasure, and Nainika. All those people in Azazel’s clutches. They’re all just… gone. We can’t bring them back.” She sniffed, smiling at me with her deep blue eyes. “It’s said that an All-Beast can’t bring back their own limbs, but that it’s possible for them to bring back others. Of course, that’s just a myth. Mother Heather tried and she couldn’t do it.” She rose from the chair, making her way towards the door. “I won’t ask you to try. I know you’re not going to answer me. Everyone is saying the poison affected your ability to talk, but I know what it is. I did it the first couple of days. I spoke to no one, acknowledged no one.” She glanced back at me. “Sometimes, it’s good to not talk. It’s good to just sit and reflect for a bit.” With that, she left the room.
I laid in bed, taking in what Celeste said. It’s true, you never really know how much something or someone means to you until it’s gone.
Something tickled my head, and I reached up to scratch it. I felt something in my hair and I pulled it out, revealing a small grey and white feather.
After about a week, Felicity and Zoe permitted me to get out of bed. It took a bit, but after a few physical therapy sessions, I was able to walk on my own again. I had to rest frequently, but it felt good to not be bound in bed.
I wandered around the tree, the single feather attached to a chain on my neck. Stares came from all directions, hushed whispers surrounding me. What they didn’t know is that harpy eagles have great hearing, but oftentimes, I simply chose to ignore them.
I spent a lot of my time in little alcoves, large hollow roots or branches that remain unoccupied.
As I walked into one of my usual alcoves, I was surprised to find Luke sitting there, fiddling with his wolf tail. I was about to walk away when Luke said “No, stay.”
I hesitated before sitting down next to him, careful not to press my back against the wall too much.
“Heard what happened,” said Luke. “Seems like you can’t handle sharp objects.”
I nodded slightly, fidgeting with my single feather.
Luke noticed and nodded at it. “That yours?” he asked. When I nodded, he looked away.
“I wish I had something of theirs,” he rubbed his silver tail. “This is the closest I have.”
I nodded, and we sat in silence in the little alcove, enjoying each other's company. After that, we met there every day, sitting in silence with each other.
“Do you ever think… how you could’ve changed the outcome? If you tried just a little bit harder, they could all be alive?” Luke asked one day.
“Yes,” I said, my voice cracking from disuse.
“Oh, so you can talk,” said Luke. “I thought you couldn’t because of the poison.”
“No,” I answered.
“It’s ok, I understand. People think I can’t talk either. It’s nice, not having to answer and people just don’t question it.”
“Yeah…” I said. “... hey Luke?”
“Yeah?” he asked.
“If it came to it, would you have killed Treasure? To protect Varsha?”
Luke inhaled sharply. “I don’t think so. I could never kill either of them, but I couldn’t watch Treasure kill Varsha either. I’m sure she wouldn’t have, though.”
“I hope you’re ready for what’s coming,” said Luke.
“What do you mean?” I asked.
“...you don’t know?”
I shook my head.
“...Azazel’s still alive.”