Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Woods Random Legacy: Chapter 48 - Shadow

One cold winter night, the traveler found what it was looking for.
Epsilon: "Hey, kitty!  It's a pretty cold night to be out exploring, especially all the way up here in the graveyard."
The cat purred, looking up at the girl.
Epsilon: "You're all covered up in snow!  The heat transfer has to be...hmm..."
She bent down and rubbed under the cat's neck, feeling for tags or a collar but finding none.
Epsilon: "You don't have anywhere to go, do you?   Want to come back home with me?"
It purred again, rubbing against her hand and legs, so she picked it up, standing.  She thought that James wouldn't even notice if she brought home a stray, and there was just something about this cat.  She felt almost as if she'd known it her whole life, but that was silly, because she'd only met it just now.
Epsilon set up some basic supplies for it on the side porch, tucked away behind the chimney.
Epsilon: "Here you go, little guy.  I guess you need a name if you're going to stay here, huh?"
She sat back on her heels, regarding the small feline thoughtfully.
Epsilon: "Well, you're black, but not quite.  Just slightly off, especially those markings around your face.  It makes you hard to see, as you just blend into the shadows.  Hmm, Shadow, I like that name.  What do you think?"
The cat butted its head up against her hand, only relenting when she gave it a gentle scratch behind the ears.
Epsilon: "Alright, Shadow it is then.  Come on inside, let's get some sleep."
Epsilon was sleeping in Alpha's old bed now, as there wasn't much point to climbing on top of the bunk if there were only two of them in the room.  Shadow followed her into the bedroom and confidently hopped up onto the bedside table, curling into a ball to sleep.  It was as if they'd performed this routine a hundred times before.

Soon it was time for Omicron to start high school.  James, as usual, was being petulant.
James: "I don't see why you need to go out and get a cake and all that.  It's a bit much."
Epsilon: "Oh my god.  Look, if you're not going to eat cake, then go do the laundry or something."
James: "Fine, I will!"
His two children just ignored him.  Who knew what he was yelling about this time?  It was probably something entirely ridiculous.
James: "I am never doing laundry again, do you hear me?  Never!"
Back in the kitchen, Epsilon cheered Omicron as he blew out the candles - all in one go!
Omicron: "You know, I think it's probably bad luck that you found a black cat in the graveyard."
Epsilon: "Don't be silly, there's no such thing as bad luck.  That's just superstition."
Omicron: "Whatever.  I've got to go, I need to sign up for my after-school activities."
Epsilon: "What are you taking?"
Omicron: "I was thinking art and drama."
Epsilon: "That sounds fun.  See you later."
James: "Stupid gnomes.  Probably trying to take over the world.  Well, I've got my eye on you."
James was growing older as well.  Determined to drag the center of attention back into himself, he threw his own birthday party.  He sent out invitations to all of his old friends and bought a cake, but only one person ended up coming; he was pretty sure he hadn't even invited her, actually.
Woman: "Oh my god, it's cake!  I love cake!  Can I eat the cake?  Can I please?"
James: "Get.  Out.  Of.  My.  House."
Woman: "But...cake?"

On Snowflake Day, Epsilon and Omicron woke up early to get the most out of the festivities.
While Epsilon enjoyed some pancakes, Omicron had cake for breakfast.  It wasn't as if anyone was going to tell him not to.
When the festival opened, the siblings were waiting, ready to try some new activities.  Epsilon strapped on some ice skates and headed for the frozen pond.
It was tough going at first, but she soon found her balance.  It was all a matter of physics, in the end, and taking it slow and steady at first was the best way to learn.
Omicron was more ambitious in his choice of winter sports.  Despite his sister's cautions that he couldn't even walk ten feet without tripping over nothing, he found himself drawn to the snowboarding half-pipe.
This didn't look so hard.  He was even strapped to the board!  How could he mess it up?
He soon found out.  Painfully.  Luckily nothing was broken, just a few bruises, but Omicron was done with sports for the day.  He decided to make a snow man, instead.  Feeling a bit of a rebellious streak today, he dressed it up like the grim reaper.  That would shock everyone!
After he finished, he looked around the festival.  His gaze fell upon a group of children on the other side of the park, and he swore under his breath.  He wasn't being a rebel at all!  What did you have to do to be edgy in this town?
Noticing everybody else having so much fun with their snow men, Epsilon decided to make one of her own.
Grinning, she surveyed the army of grim reaper snow men, turning to look at her brother as he came over.
Epsilon: "It's like an army of grim reapers are taking over the park!"
Omicron: "You're so weird, do you know that?"
Epsilon: "Of course I do.  We should be getting back home, prom's tonight."
Omicron: "I'm still not sure if I want to go."
Epsilon: "Of course you do.  Alpha said she always regretted not being able to go.  You'll have a good time."
Omicron hoped she was right.  He'd had a hard time of it in elementary school, never really making any friends.  Prom was supposed to be a night you'd remember for the rest of your life, and he didn't want that memory to be a bad one.
Epsilon knew she was right.  The kids didn't tease her as much as they had in elementary school, and she was sure it would be the same way for Omicron.  It had taken her a few years, but she'd found her niche in the school's culture.  A solitary, nerdy niche, yes, but a niche all the same.  Omicron would too, he just had to be patient.  Prom might be just the event to help him out.

That same night, the night of the old solstice, an envoy sought an audience with an ancient king.
There was much to discuss.

~ * ~

And so the "panther" is be a housecat.  Sorry for the lack of scale context in the picture I ended the last chapter with, I didn't even think of that when I posted it.

James is an elder now.  He's certainly having a bit of a rough time of it, but it's kind of his own fault due to that attitude.

I don't know why everybody is making grim reaper snowmen.  It was totally creepy.  And please ignore the outfit stupidity - Omicron and Epsilon kept trying to change into their everyday outfits when at the festival.

I just noticed when writing this that there were a few pictures where I forgot to put the walls up.  Ajsgjerwh >_<


  1. Can't see any pictures with walls down! I scrolled back up and down again to see, but there isn't.

    I think the panther was cooler when it was a panther, but if I'm right about what I'm assuming, it's gunna be cooler anyway.

    James does deserve to have nobody attend his party, but I still felt bad.

    Ooh, that ending! What's gunna happen?!?!!?!?!?!!?!??£W@:32ekfepiugoicxl;,
    (sorry, got excited...)

    1. There were two in the park scene. And another picture there I put the walls up but forgot to go up a few floors, so you can't see the roof.

      Not a panther, silly! :p It's gonna be pretty cool. At least, I hope so.

      I felt a little bad too, but then I took that picture and started laughing, because of the crazy cake lady.

      You'll just have to wait and find out! ;)
      At this point in the generation, I'm trying to wrap up all the plot threads that need to come together by the time the generation ends. So that's why we're getting a bunch of random, mysterious things.

    2. I wouldn't feel bad about no point of reference size-wise for the panther in the last chapter. I'm sure as you can't get panthers in game, you didn't expect anyone to assume it was anything but a housecat ;)

      I like random mystery!

  2. I didn't notice the lack of walls in any pictures so I shouldn't worry about it.

    Lots of interesting things going on in this chapter, who is Shadow (other than a black cat), where did he come from and why has he shown up (and attached himself to Epsilon? I'm also fascinated by the ending and can't wait to find out what's going on with the alien and the ghostly king

    1. Shadow will be explained in the upcoming chapters. Well, mostly explained, at any rate. I'm not going to leave him as a huge mystery for long.

      I'm not sure if I'm going to show the entire meeting(with the alien envoy and the king of the ghosts) itself, that might be too many spoilers, but you'll definitely see the aftermath.

  3. Humm. There's certainly something about that cat. Leading her to a grave yard and now she's brought it into the home? It's not that sneaky magician, is it? Or was he only after Alpha.

    James never grows up, does he? lol. He's right, those stupid gnomes are trying to take over the dang world. How nice of him to get a cake for himself, while not caring about getting one for Omicron.