Lost on the Shores: Alone

Published Aug 4, 2022, 12:20:39 PM UTC | Last updated Aug 4, 2022, 12:20:39 PM | Total Chapters 1

Story Summary

After a tropical storm seperates Umbrage from both his rider, and the charge he was escorting, he finds himself on a desolate beach...

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Chapter 1: Alone

Shrieking howls filled the night’s air, echoing across the desolate beach, their point of origin is large Lycan. Head tilted towards the moon, he cried and screeched out again in seemingly endless frustration. The beast, Umbrage, whipped his head around, multiple sets of eyes scanning the beach just as he’d done probably a hundred times before. He has lost his rider and his charge, and the failure burned into his core, just as bad as the corruption that seared his bones and dripped from his jaws.

The beach was empty, there was nothing here. No crabs scuttled in the sand, no birds flew overhead, and even the bugs were missing, all frightened away by the angry beast howling on the sands. Letting out one last frustrated howl, he turned instead towards the strange monolith burning in the sands. What a strange thing it was. To him, depicting such a wrong visage of a Harpia. Was it even a Harpia? Perhaps it was simply similar, or even a Microstryx variant unknown to him. The Phyllo were similar to the Chiro, were they not? But pondering these questions did nothing for him, the thoughts echoing around his head until they became nothing but noise, irritating him all over again. With a snarl he lashed out a wing, raking his claws down the side of the monolith. In the end it was nothing but a useless rock. A rock that served no help to his current plights.

No rider, no charge, no other Stryx, he was alone. The eyes adorning his body swiveled in different directions, scanning for any of the missing parties. He hated being alone. He was already alone for most of his life, and he didn’t want to be alone again. 

The beach was empty. The stone was unhelpful. A splash of bright green corruption fell to the sands as he finally turned his attention to the tropical forest. It was dense and thick, he’d never fly through it, and pulling himself through without tearing his wings could be a challenge. The forest was the only place he hadn’t searched, and he desperately wanted to find someone, anyone at all who would push the dark tendrils of isolation away. He lets out another howl, hoping against hope that this time, finally, someone would respond. As he stood, hesitating at the edge of the forest, only the lonely wind howled back, and that pushed him to dive into the forest. Away from the desolate beach, away from the lonely wind, and away from the nothingless. At least in the forest, though cramped and awkward to move in, there was life. Small things moved in the underbrush, other things flitted overhead, fleeing the strange beast intruding on their homes, but they were there. 

He pushed forward, his claws raking against trees, tearing up the leaf cover on the ground, disturbing many small creatures in his search for his companions. He left a trail of mild destruction in his wake, but that was nothing new, and it’d let him know if he’d already searched that area or not. Perhaps, his scarred heart whispered, perhaps it’d let the others find you as well. Perhaps it would. Onward he pushed through the forest paths, twisting and turning, searching even as the moon dipped and the sun rose. He stopped his search only when his stomach growls were louder than his own irritated howls, or when his mouth was so dry he couldn’t even muster a whisper. He did not stop searching, even for sleep, until his body gave out beneath him, and he collapsed then and there. Finally closing his multitude of eyes, and letting his wary body rest as he drifted off into a fitful sleep. 

By the time his dreams snapped him back to the waking world with an anguished howl, the moon was high in the sky again, though through the dense treetops it was hard to tell. He was still alone. No one had come for him, and he had found no one. Another howl tore from this through, full of frustration, pain, and loneliness. He tore through the forest, with no regard to his own personal well being, and with no regard to any life that might already be on the island. Umbrage tore madly through the forest, tearing down trees and uptearning the earth. The smaller creatures that had the misfortune of crossing his enraged path met their end in his jaws. The bright green corruption streamed from his jaws at an almost constant rate now, fueled by the anger and pain festering within him. It poisoned him, and somewhere in the many thoughts echoing in his mind, he wondered if it’d poison that land as well, twisting it just as it twisted him. Those thoughts though were only a few of many, echoing loudly in his head until he couldn’t make one thought from another and they all blurred together in a loud unbearable noise. The noise was too much to pull any rational thought from, so he simply raged on, tearing down the lands around him. 

 

Umbrage wasn’t sure when he had fallen asleep, but when he awoke the moon was in a different phase than when he last remembered. The foul corruption surrounded him, and a chunk of the forest was no more. Some of the forest remained, farther in the distance, saved from the rampage by his own exhaustion more than anything else. Though he did not remember much of the rampage, only the static of his own head and the isolation pressing in from all sides, he still knew the destruction was caused by him. It wasn’t the first time he’d been unable to control himself, destroying everything his claws touched. He thought it’d be different now, he had a companion, a rider that calmed the thoughts in his head, that pushed the isolation away. But now they were gone. And he was alone. No matter what he did, he always ended up alone.

Shrieking howls filled the night's air, crying out in sorrows and regrets. Echoing across the ruined forest, their point of origin, one lone Lycan. Alone.

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