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About Literature / Artist Member YitikUnknown Recent Activity
Deviant for 7 Years
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Now sound the calls | of cocks unearthly,
Gallinkambi crows, | of gold his throat.
Fjalar follows, | frost-giants awaken,
And a third in Helheim, | the home of the dead.

Surtr from the south | his sword of fire
Strides over Midgard | scorching the earth.
Naglfar's unleashed, | of nails it's wrought,
Helmed by Loki, | Laufey's son.

Fettered and gagged, | the Fenris Wolf bellows,
For the blood of his captors, | he bays and writhes,
Straining at chains; | his children sated
On the sun and the moon | they've sought to devour.

Fettered and gagged, | the Fenris Wolf bellows,
For the blood of his captors, | he bays and writhes,
Gleipnir shatters, | the girdle that keeps him,
The giant's ribbon; | Ragnarok has come.

The sword in his jaws | sundered in two,
Fenrir trembles; | treachery, it seems
To Angrboda's son, | of the Aesir that bound
The wolf until | the worlds' destruction.

By the grace of the gods | he grew too large
Until nothing but fear | flared in their eyes.
For long they kept him | from a cub raised
His height waned their courage | and their cunning inspired.

A chain they had fashioned | of fish's breath
A mountain's roots | and maiden's beard,
Their mercy withdrawn, | the wolf was imprisoned
With the hand in his mouth | of Hymir's son.

So strides Fenrir | over the flames of Midgard,
Over the bridge of Bifrost | broken and dim,
Snarling and snapping | his sanguine thirst
To wreak his vengeance | on the rulers of Asgard.

So fights mighty Fenrir | at his father's call
Beside his brothers | and barrow-dwellers.
As wyrd would have it | the wolf is found
By the greatest of gods | and Grungnir, his spear.

Odin says:
On the field of deeds | Fenrir leaves claw-marks;
Fated the minute | I meet the wolf,
And so shall he fall, | one fell beast less
To ravage the world, | but rot in the new.

Fenrir says:
Be silent, Odin! | So certain you are
Of your far-sight, | all futures you know.
But have not conceived | of your corpse this day:
I shall devour you | as the diviner foretold.

Odin says:
My silence you'll not have, | so certain am I
Of my far-sight, | all futures I know,
I've foreseen my death, | my demise in your jaws,
But wisdom does not save us | from weapons and fangs.

And my wisdom is greatest | of all gods and men,
Though in these last hours | there is aught I know not:
What vengeance takes Fenrir | on the father of the gods?
It was the dwarves who fashioned | the fetter that bound him.

Fenrir says:
Be quiet, Odin! | So cunning you are,
But the dwarves will not suffer | the death that is yours.
The betrayer of Fenrir | before him stands;
The children of Nidavellir | did not chain my limbs.

The gods gave me shelter, | let me grow on their food,
But left me to starve, | sword stuck in my jaws.
Such pain I endured | till the end of all things,
And shall have my first meal: | the head of the Allfather.

Odin says:
On the gods you take vengeance | though on Valfodr is wasted.
The dwarves made the tether | and Tyr did bind you.
Why does Fenrir not howl | for the handless god?
Why goes he to spit | upon the spear of Odin?

Fenrir says:
Retribution is something | wrought and satisfied.
When vengeance is taken | it's tallied and remembered,
Not kept and coveted | to be carried out
Again and again | till the Aesir fall.

The god of duels | his due has made:
His sword-hand I took, | severed from wrist.
From the Aesir I'll get | a gild for their trickery:
Hangatyr and Third | the highest of wights.

Odin says:
What gets Fenrir | from the father of men
If to slay him he tried | and successful was?
What vanity drives | the vengeance of the wolf?
What fame seeks | his fangs in my throat?

Fenrir says:
Fame I seek not | now of all days,
'Twas vanity that bound me, | my bane long ago.
No longer I need | to be known on men's lips,
Or seen in esteem | for my strength alone.

Long after death | last the deeds of our lives,
The feats that weigh | our worth in the worlds.
Before now I strove | to sear my name in the minds
Of men by my might | and means of fear.

Long after death | last the deeds of our lives,
The feats that weigh | our worth in the worlds.
But justly my fame | by jealousy I lost,
When I could have commit | to kith and family.

And know I still; | even now I ween
That I'll be slain | by your son in fury.
This is the way | of the worlds, all nine,
So shall we each perish | for peace in the end.

Odin says:
And so speeds the wolf | to the side of Loki,
Forsaken by the gods, | long fettered by dwarves,
To feast upon Odin, | father of Vithar,
As foretold by the volva | far-sighted in death.

There is no right | in Ragnarok's last hours,
Only two sides | who strive for death.
For the new green world | must nine others fall,
So are slain both Fenrir | and Svafnir at last.

Fenrir forth surges | to snap his jaws;
Grungnir's old wielder | the wolf's attack parries,
Displaying his might, | the main of the gods,
In a torrent of blood, | the twilight of worlds.

Finally falls Odin | to the fangs of the wolf,
The first of all | the Aesir at war.
The giant's lips | he licks, and growls,
His victory fated | and famed nevermore.

Forward strides Vithar | Valtyr's mighty son,
To win his glory, | the gods' avenger.
Screaming in fury, | he strikes the devourer;
The wolf's red mouth | stretched wide in bloodlust.

With empty hands | he holds his snout,
His toes pressed down | on the tongue of the beast,
Vithar roars | and wrenches his arms,
And tears open the jaws | of the terror of Asgard.

Thus fall one by one | the forces of Loki,
And the gods and all things, | the great and the small.
And blossoms a field | beautiful and green,
Where all lost to fame | is forgotten at last.
The Speech of Fenrir (Fenrismol)
Some modern mythology inspired by much more ancient stories, written in a form just as old but in a language as new as they come.
Mature Content Filter is On
(Contains: sexual themes)
My drug of pleasant amber hue.
My fine and fragrant opium—
My warm intoxicating dew;

Escape we far from mis’ry through
A gateway to Elysium;
A drug of pleasant amber hue:

The perfect thing for me and you,
To dash away this tedium
With warm intoxicating dew.

The only heaven ringing true,
Akin to mem’ry prepartum,
Of drug of pleasant amber hue.

Let us descend, no more ado
In crowning vap’rous orgasm,
In warm intoxicating dew.

On silk we smoke one pipe more to
This love by lamp-lit podium,
This drug of pleasant amber hue,
This warm intoxicating dew.
Opium Pipes: A Villanelle
My second villanelle.  It makes me look like an oversexed junkie.  I am not.
Day 1/16:33

The International Global Warming Association has agreed to fund 1E9 units to my team, Climate Regulation Science, Incorporated, upon being approved by ethics boards at long last.  It is my expectation that this endeavour will ultimately lead to a neutralization, and perhaps even eventually a reversal, of anthropogenic climate change, through the development and construction of gas fusion and climate generators.  I also personally hope that the former may solve the world's energy crisis as well, providing power not only including but especially to those living in areas most detrimentally affected by climate change for centuries, although I did not include these hopes in my research proposal to IGWA.  It sounds suitably ambitious, but in the end it is only one more thing that may prove fallacious.  Our only reward would be lost standing, which would be a shame in the case of a research team which would otherwise save the world.

Day 13/20:01

CRS has received the hardware, technicians and clearance that will be the proverbial vessel of our research.  It will essentially create the laboratory in which we will work.  The concept itself is new, and the technology is still very tightly restricted; most of the difficulties I have faced with ethics and IGWA are due to what I believe is the absolute requirement we have for an alternate reality.  Small-scale laboratory settings simply will not be as efficacious, as true-to-life, as is necessary for such a bold project as we have on our hands, and of course simply experimenting on the Earth we have would be so ethically wrong that even the most heartless, greedy, megalomaniacal scientific mastermind would reel.  I do not do this for greed; I have one billion units in my hands, all but literally, and all I can think of is the excitement I share with my team for that moment when we will step out of the confines of our universe and into a fresh, uncivilized world of our very own.

Day 60/2:19

The Separate String Series Transference Device (S3TD) has been constructed and calibrated.  I wish I could log an image of it, take a picture of it with my voice.  It is enormous; it is hard for me to believe even with the best engineers and technology at our disposal it could be constructed in fewer than two months.  The vacuum pump alone is larger than my apartment building.  The diodes are two humungous saucers, like alien spacecraft from the first science fiction movies, large enough to cast a shadow over a turboprop.  A technician just showed me the testing device, a little cube riddled with sensors and outputs, and told me with a smile that the world the S3TD links us to is identical to New Earth, and that our team and equipment will be transported reliably on top of a plateau at high latitude, where we will make our offices.  I can't wait.

Day 0/0:00

This place is beautiful.  An unspoiled prehistoric Canadian wilderness in a world where Canada, English, or proper nouns of any kind have never been even conceived.  Absolutely breathtaking: the tundra, the forests, the lights in a sky unspoiled by vapor trails.  Until I remember the Earth I must return to at the end of the day, it seems to me the greatest tragedy that we are here to destroy it.

Day 0/0:00

The automated clock on my device does not function here, as there are no satellites, no receivers.  I knew this ahead of time, of course, and will note the date and time relative to my wristwatch by hand in my notes as I take these voice-to-text logs.  I almost wish I did not need to, though.  I wish I could explore this cold Earth, wrapped in my tunic, and imagine myself a primitive in a world without time.

Day 0/0:00

We started work today, at last.  All of our necessary building materials have been transported over, and our constructors are erecting the first man-made blemish on this world, which is where we will live and orchestrate our research.

Day 187/7:56

The technicians on the S3TD assure me that it is not time travel, rather it is the establishment of tangible contact between our reality and another that existed millions or billions of years ago.  Regardless of the distinction, it does not feel to me that over three months have passed for us in this ancient reality.  It is not exactly scientific, but I feel compelled to log my feelings on this and other matters of our research.  Perhaps they will make it into a biography after we have concluded.

Day 187/16:20

I'm back with Neil.  Even though three months passed for him while only weeks passed for me, and my hand-notes on subjective time of my previous logs are rendered irrelevant, what remains is that we each missed each other greatly.  I of course have much more to tell him about my weeks than he has to tell me about his months, but words aren't always the best mode of communication.  I don't even know why I'm recording this.  Silly.

Day 0/0:00

The offices have been completed to the point where we can begin research, the meat and bones of which is yet more building.  We have the designs, however; IGWA wanted them in their hands before we gained funding, which nearly drove some of the more suspicious individuals on our team (who shall remain anonymous) out of their minds.  Administration are fairly sure IGWA is not an evil international secret agency bent on applying untested research on humanity in the name of potential profit, however, so work will continue as normal.  Right now, while the machinery is constructed, we will need to survey this world in regards to its climate, atmospheric composition, albedo, mass, magnetic field, and, most impressively, its geography.  We are, in every sense, the successors to Erickson, Cook, Columbus: we are mapping out this new world, one step at a time, not only over a very short period but under its pristine atmosphere.  Explorers at sea level.  Trailblazers.

Day 0/0:00

I travelled today to view the site of our first extension to the S3TD network, which is roughly one thousand kilometers away from main base.  The climate generators have an effective radius of five hundred kilometers, so this will be the standard distance between them.  If this Cold Earth has the same surface area as the real Earth, this means we will have to construct and deploy one thousand units.  It is a daunting task, like building one thousand small nuclear submarines and then burying them in the ground, but we have the funding, and we have the manpower.  And then, when our hypothesis is shown to be correct, we will do it all again in the real world.

I digress, however.  The S3TD network will work as closely with the climate generator network as it can, to speed up construction.  These smaller S3TDs are designed to be portable, so that only those sites that still need construction or monitoring will be connected.  I am grateful for this, because the sprawling plain of tundra I am standing on now is simply too gorgeous to marr.  It kills me that we are putting even a single hole in the ground.

Day 0/0:00

The functionality of the climate generators is in three interdependent parts: They extract carbon compounds in gaseous form and other substances from the surrounding atmosphere to reduce the concentration of greenhouse gases over time.  These molecules then undergo electrolytic decomposition and their component atoms are used in fusion reactions until they are heavy metals and the process’s energy efficiency turns negative.  The purpose of this part is twofold: one, to compress the biproducts, rendering them effectively zero in the short-term, and two, to produce energy for the third part, which is the climate generator.  This is a rather complex invention of our team which utilizes electromagnetic fields to manipulate nearby weather.  In this case, it will dissipate or deflect intense weather patterns, whether areas of high or low pressure, and high or low humidity, according to a series of algorithms.  The combined effect should neutralize the more violent storms coastlines have been facing, and bring water to drought-stricken regions.  My expectation is that after an extended period of greenhouse gas neutralization, this third part of the generators will no longer be needed, and they can instead become generators of electricity for common use.  With them, we will solve the world’s problems with one swing.

Day 0/0:00

Atmospheric and geological data are in.  Composition is indeed identical to Earth’s.  The geography is more difficult to tell, but I believe it is safe to say that the S3TD technicians were right, that we are in a world mimicking Neoproterozoic Earth.  The global temperature is low, roughly twenty degrees Centigrade cooler than modern Earth, which would place us in the Tonian period.  This means we are only a few hundred million years from a Snowball Earth scenario, but I believe this planet is close enough to the history of our own that we can accurately calculate the effects of our research in the very long term regardless.  I have never felt more like a time traveller before than now; the idea is difficult to shake.

Day 215/5:10

I am back in the real world, but Matt won’t be seeing much of me.  I have a lot of calculations and planning to do if we are to stay on time, and on budget.  Time does seem to play some role in the S3TD functionality despite the fact that it is supposed to be stable at this point in the study: One day here may be two there, or two there may be three here.  It seems entirely random and however much I shout it seems no one can do anything about it, so I simply must work quickly and hope it is quick enough.  This log is little more than stress relief.  And not a very good one, at that.  Damn it.

Day 0/0:00

My calculations are completed, the planning meetings have gone through, the sites are laid out and unnecessary team members transported back to Earth.  Now the Independent Pollution and Climate Change Activator (IPaCCA) need to be calibrated and, hopefully, everything will go according to plan.  We won’t get a second shot at this.

Day 0/0:00

It has been a while since my last log.  Of course, in an objective sense it is impossible to tell, but my watch and calendar do their best.  IPaCCA is ready: It really is an enormous facility.  Most of it will be inaccessible after today as its burners fire up and this world I have come to admire — even thrive in personally, to the detriment of my marriage and sometimes even my research — will fall into ruination, like ours.  Exactly like ours, if everything goes according to plan.  The factory will produce gaseous waste of ten billion humans living on Cold Earth’s surface, every minute of every day for the rest of this poor world’s existence.

Day 395/21:49

I am back home, finally, and this time for longer than a few days.  No more meetings, no more calculations.  This has been the hardest part, though, so far: the waiting.  We aren’t yet testing the product of our research, the fusion climate generators, but we are creating the setting needed for a realistic dry run.  If that fails, if I made a mistake somewhere, even a small one, this last year and all that money have been for nothing.  I am going on a vacation with Neil to Nunavut to take my mind off of things.  He is excited and always so supportive.  I love him.

Day 409/4:01

Nunavut is treating us well.  The city is clean and the water is cool.  I'll admit that being here reminds me a little of being on the south side of Cold Earth, where there is now a huge factory spoiling it forever, but I do my best to put it out of my mind.  So does Neil.  We are enjoying the cool air, the tourist sites, the cleanliness of it all.  It is amazing that even with people all over the world coming to visit that it has retained the feel of a small city.  Perhaps it is simply the temperature that makes everyone on the street seem so distant.  And when our generators are proven to work, we can get them installed all over the world.  It might not be within our lifetime, but perhaps our children could have a Nunuvut planet.

Day 416/21:58

I got a call from the main office on our trip (the one on Earth, of course): IPaCCA is operating efficiently (or inefficiently, depending on how one looks at it) and work has begun on recalibrating the temporal coordinates of S3TD (which are, technically, spatial coordinates).  Neil seems disappointed (as this means our holiday will be ending sooner than expected so that we can catch up to our schedule), but I can't muster up the same emotion; Nunuvut is wonderful, but the warming of our Cold Earth has been all that's on my mind.  As a side-note, it is probably a good thing my speech-to-text program does not insert parentheses.  Neil is making fun of me (currently reading over my shoulder).

Day 0/0:00

I returned to meet my team on Cold Earth to find it not so cold anymore.  I am told the S3TD destination has been recalibrated to the same reality, and the same point relative to IPaCCA, but five hundred years later than its installation.  I am flatly refusing to listen to anyone who insists that we have not undergone time travel.  I will have my infantile fantasy regardless; it's all I have here now that the permafrost I admired so greatly is gone.  Installation of the generators is beginning now.

Day 0/0:00

I took another trip today, this time several kilometers below sea level.  The oceans are the largest reservoirs of greenhouse gases, so although no one will be living on the ocean floor when we get back to notice the immediate climate-shielding functionality of the generators, it is important that the units be installed there as well as in urban centers.  In this world, for the sake of scientific rigor, the units are being installed roughly equidistant of one another, which I certainly did not stipulate because it meant I would get to explore the abyss in a submersible.

Day 0/0:00

All one thousand generators have been installed, buried in the ground, and activated.  Each one has been tested, each one should be working as planned.  Now that I’ve been all over this world, it’s time to return to my own, and wait another century.  Even if this century will only take the few days the S3TD team needs to recalibrate again, I know I will simply lose my mind.  There has to be something else I can do.

Day 500/1:10

Neil insists on a quiet week.  I hope it’s only a week.  We are looking at adoption agencies online.  When this experiment is finished, and all the bureaucracy has been satiated and the awards and royalties are coming in the mail like department store fliers, we may start an even more important project of our own.  This time, we’re both excited; at least the prospect of it is keeping Cold Earth off of my mind.

Day 502/11:09

I just woke up to a nightmare.  I’m fine now, Neil is going to get me a glass of wine, but that’s just it.  I don’t really know anymore: which one of us is older now?  What happened in between the time he had and the time I lost in my work with CRS?  I can’t answer this right now.

Day 509/15:01

I received a voicemail from the director of IGWA.  It did not sound terribly positive, but I am certain we did everything right.  There were no errors.  Let me have a look at that sensor.

Day 509/15:41

It must be a problem in the experimental setting.  Did we correct for the geological changes during the Tonian period?  Was it necessary to?  I need a paleontologist.  Who is CRS’s paleontologist?

Day 509/16:00

En route to the S3TD— Why are you recording now?  Put that away.

Day 509/17:19

I’m not letting anyone tell me what to do.  No one is going to take away my recorder.  No one is going to inform me of the status of the experiment.  I am going to do it myself.  I am going to take my damn own measurements.  I am going to see everything!

    My mother returned home with a man and a wound.
    Out of Shoemioni, Child Lake, appeared her nose, clean and moist, but only by the fresh water.  Blood boiled up from her haunches.  Then appeared her head, tired and stained with mud and dye, and the heads of four others: her friends, flanking her, but never touching her.  Their names were Otcaor, Caertacail, Oelsimkene, and Tsiemrattol.  My mother did not die that day: Her name was Siesmen, which means First Life, and she never had another one.
    Siesmen is said to have given so much blood to Shoemioni that the lake dyed itself with her wounds until the next morning, the red lines of fluid trailing in her wake and remaining on the surface, refusing to become diluted by the water, already pink far out in the center with the blood of other warriors.  In return for her sacrifice to it, the lake gave her victory: one of the famed Fohiramoc, the Red-Pelts, on the other side of the river where the silt is a ruddy brown, filled with metal that colours the oekinel living there just like it does the water, and gives them high worth as sacrifices to spirits of battle.  This Fohiramoc’s name was Oecomits, and Siesmen said when she looked in his eyes, she saw the colour blue.
    Siesmen did not say much else, only that she would be the one to let his lifeblood out onto our shore for the favour of the spirits, before she left to the house she lived in where her friends bandaged her wound in private.
    Oecomits did not speak, as it is not proper for a captive to associate with those who have conquered him.  He was bound by expert weavers who use only their teeth, the both of them together tying his wrists and his feet and his muzzle, leaving his wound, until the morning when my mother would assuredly cut his throat with a knife and the rest of his blood would soak the beach as a final sacrifice to Shoemioni.
    But when the sun rose the next day, and all of our village was looking forward to celebrating the victory of the five warriors among them, they found only cut ropes, frayed with a handheld blade, and four warriors with bandages and dyes marking their wounds.  The fifth, missing, was Siesmen.
    By the time the sun had set again, no one in the tribe remembered my mother as the oekin who returned bearing a great wound and a powerful sacrifice.  They did not remember her as a mighty warrior, or a caring friend, or a beautiful child, all of which they would confess to me years later that she was.  They only knew her as a traitor, and blamed her for every misfortune that would befall them after.
    Neither my mother nor Oecomits were seen for one full month, but when she returned, her paw was lewdly in his.  The tribe was happy to see her back, but their fury with her overshadowed their relief.  Some of the old people said that they should both be killed, until Siesmen told them, in fear for her life and her lover’s, that she was carrying his child.  It was quickly found to be true — that she was pregnant — and no one could imagine how she could have been with anyone else but the male she had captured, and was so clearly in love with, so neither of them would be put to death.  A small house was built for them out of the meanest mud and sharpest branches, and the pair lived in it in seclusion, but in safety.
    Meanwhile, as Siesmen’s belly swelled, there was much discussion amongst everyone, and even the Fohiramoc got in on the debate as to why all of this had happened.  Some said that Siesmen had coerced Oecomits, that she had freed him so he would meet those desires she kept hidden deep down from even her closest friends.  Others said Oekomits had entranced her with a spell he had used in battle, and his strangely coloured irises.  A few others — and these are the ones which I believe — say that Siesmen and Oekomits had a secret romance, held in the middle of the lake for weeks, months, years, until they were forced to fight, and it was then that they knew they had to make a sacrifice of status in their respective tribes in order to be together at last.  They say they knew who made certain there would be no retreat, that one would capture the other during the battle in Shoemioni.
    Before the rumours could reach their climax, and before any decision on how this travesty of love could come to be, I was born.  Siesman was taken to the shore, like any other woman in childbirth, so the blood from Siesmen’s womb would run into the lake.  But it would be the final wound my mother bore breathing: she died giving birth to me, and my first pained cries in this world were her last.  They said it was retribution from the lake’s spirits, for her betrayal of her tribe and her refusal to give Shoemioni its due sacrifice.  Instead of Oecomits’s life, it took hers.
    Oecomits himself was never seen again.  It was said he knew what vengeance would await him, and like a coward, or like a magician, he fled the lake.  The tribe forgot about him, and their worry turned to Siesmen’s death on Shoemioni’s shores: they declared war on another tribe at another lake who are said to be beloved of those spirits of newborns and the wombs they spring from.  As for me, I was left on the beach to be found and cared for by Caertacail, whom I would come to call mother and who had borne another son recently, despite being much older and wiser than Siesmen.  Her son's name was Rielshiot, because his muzzle appeared to be split down the middle, and he could never speak well.
    Caertacail named me Rielcai, which means Stone-Nose.  It has been so long it seems as though it isn’t even my name anymore, but she said it is because when I first nursed at her teat, as a newborn I was so hungry that I hurt her.  I believe, however, that she named me after my birth-mother, and her stubbornness to do what seemed right in her heart, regardless of what she would sacrifice for it in the end.  I will always be grateful for them both.
A Sacrifice to Child Lake
The second story written for Ipakha:…

More on the Oekin language:…
    Power is a very silly thing to crave.  There are much nicer things to want, like love, or water (rare enough to be wanted here), or good salted fish.
    Really, there can't be any reason to want power other than simply to have it: it doesn't tickle any primal mammalian desires, unless you count the desire to have control over other people.  Controlling others means you yourself are not being controlled by them, but if it's freedom you're searching for, why not put your energy into simply wanting that?
    No, all power gets you is more work and harder work.  Naturally, of all the crew and officers on the SSS Dungong, the captain with all his power has the most difficult work of all — at the moment, he is performing the work of going down with his ship.
    And I am looking down at the iron deck of the Dungong some twenty meters below, and the sands some twenty-five, frothing with moisture where there should only be a desert plain.  Yes, Captain Ichigo is doing his job very well under a decently thick layer of quicksand, now.  He and his passionate crew remained, trying to keep the Dungong above ground, while all those already below decks - my companion and I - who couldn't give a damn surged up, like the vermin we're meant to be keeping down, to take refuge in the rigging.  Certainly, some Tsijese tried to follow, but the solidarity of the powerless is not to be underestimated: three perforated bodies — one fallen from her mast, in the skirmish, poor thing — lies mangled on the main deck, waiting to be swallowed up by the freshly hydrated desert.
    That is, if you'll allow me to philosophize further, the most tragic thing of all.  The Dungong is — was — a watership: she transported water.  When I was sold to Captain Ichigo, the whole thing was as silly to me as building trees; water was plentiful in my home pre-slavery, the Minwan Basin far away from here.  In this part of the world, however, plainly obvious as it is now, there is not much water, so water has to be imported.  Therein lies the peril of the oekinel who live in it.
    So for me, there is no love lost at all for the Tsijese sailors and Captain Ichigo who are all well and asphyxiated now because, as I see it, they attempted to take water where it oughtn't go.  It's just common sense.  If water was meant to be in the desert, then it would rain.  I am more concerned about the fact that, along with water, there were two other things that were being taken somewhere they do not belong, and like the spilling water paying the price for it: myself, straddling this uncomfortable iron beam, and Jewel.
    Jewel is lovely: a lithe, well-proportioned body covered in wonderful light brown fur which she somehow managed to keep groomed even in the bilge where I met her, woefully wrapped in misshapen burlap clothing.  And the little gold ring in her ear, of course, matching the one in mine.  Matching her fur.  Matching her eyes.  Her fingers wind into mine for any number of kinds of reassurance.
    "Tsaiko?" she asks, using a pet name.
    "Yes?" I reply in the language we share.  It's the only one we know; Tsijese and all the other languages of these flat-nosed people in barren climes are impossible to make heads or tails of — especially considering they don't have tails, and as I hope I have implied well enough, hardly have heads.
    "Nothing," she says. "I just wanted to hear the tone of your voice to see if you're afraid." Jewel, herself, does not sound afraid at all.  But she never does. "Say something else."
    "Um," I say, which probably doesn't count. "I don't know what else to say.  How do you feel about the barrelman?"
    Jewel looks up at the crow's nest, where the barrelman was, and then down at the deck, where the barrelman is now up to her temples and buttocks in quicksand. "I’d never met her," is all Jewel has to say.
    "Me neither.  But if you think about it, she did save us."
    "If I think about it?"
    "She shot that one trying to come up here.  He would have thrown us off, for sure."
    Jewel snorts through her nose.  She makes it seem like the most attractive sound ever. "She was going to throw us off, too."
    "How do you know?"
    "She was trying to climb over to the foremast.  Didn't you notice?"
    I shrug heavily, then wish I didn't and grip Jewel's paw more tightly.  The wind really should be more courteous than it is about nautical disasters.  Jewel just smirks nervously.
    "I was busy watching all the other pink ones get swallowed up," I protest weakly, trying to indicate with my voice that if I had a spare arm I would be gesturing downwards.
    "We were lucky she fell.  I don't feel bad at all."
    "She fell?" I ask, feeling blood fill my ears.  I must not have been paying attention. "So who shot those two?"
    "I did, before we came up.  You really didn't see?"
    I shake my head, completely at a loss at this point.  Jewel makes a noise of mixed frustration and amusement, as if she had a cold that lacked motivation.
    "Where did you get the gun?" I ask.
    "I took it," Jewel replies helpfully.
    "That Meid that we stepped over on the stairs."
    "Let me guess, you killed him too?"
    Jewel gives me a look.  I suck my cheek.
    "So, where's the gun now?" I ask further, looking her over for it.  Even in the clothes we're given when we're forcibly employed, there aren't many places to conceal a firearm.
    "I threw it."
    "You what?"
    "I threw it at her.  Why do you think she fell?"
    I groan. "It was a gun!"
    "You threw it?"
    "It was out of bullets!"
    "It was still a gun!" I sit my elbow on my knee and my chin in my palm that isn't occupied with Jewel's, watching the sand slowly swallow up everything that isn't in the masts.  Everyone that isn't us.  And probably, somewhere, our only possible defence against a world that we can't comprehend and in turn refuses to acknowledge our existence.
    "We're going to die anyway," Jewel states.  I imagine a hint of genuine emotion in her voice.
    "It's slowing down.  We might be able to get away on the rigging." I look around: there are ropes everywhere.  Sails.  Yards.
    Jewel scoffs. "To where?"
    Oekins. Sand.  A whole desert of sand. "Right."
    "Maybe there will be another ship," Jewel suggests, answering her own question. "At least we have some water."
    "Not enough to swim in."
    "I would rather swim in that than go back to Mariniana."
    The swirling sands below, bubbling slower and slower like time before you drift off the sleep, are hypnotic.  I don't know what happened with Jewel in the City of Faults.  I know a little, I mean, but no more than that, and I don't much want to. "We won't," I reassure her.
    "Swim in quicksand?"
    "Go back."
    "We are going to die, though."
    I exhale dry air. "We'll die together, I suppose." That really seems to be the nicest thing I can say at this point.  But after the lives we've had, together and apart, it may be one of the nicest things I ever have said.  Jewel agrees, it seems, without words: she reaches behind herself to pull her tail out of its prison, the poorly fitting pants she's forced to wear, and shuffles closer to me along the hot iron yard.
    "Thanks," she murmurs in my ear, then rests her jaw by it, in the crook of my neck.  I put an arm around her to take her other paw.  If our old tribesmen could see us now, embracing the taboo of twining fingers while sitting atop the highest point as far as the eye can see, a slowly sinking metal spire under the merciless sun, they would think...well.  I don't know what they would think.
    I think about what they would think, what exactly they would say upon seeing my wife and I wrapped in this open embrace over sunken corpses, the crew of the SSS Dungong, our owners, until we cease being the highest two creatures above the merciless quicksand...
    Because turbines materialize, in the distance, through the hot haze.
Sinking of the SSS Dungong
The first in a series, albeit not chronologically.  Time's fickleness is at the heart of this setting:…

For those interested:…
Screw the Mature filter, there needs to be a Close-Up-Of-Bugs filter.  And who came up with the idiotic idea to give these things a DD?  An incredible troll, that's who.

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DevonianFossil Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2014
In your article on conlanging you mentioned you had a background in linguistics. How do we interpret the way a language is described (ie. ergative-absolutive)? I've been trying to read about the Basque and Etruscan languages (or at least the little that's known of the latter) for ideas on a fictional language, but my linguistics experience is limited to a quarter of an introductory anthropology class.
Yitik Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2014   Writer
Yeah, typological alignment is super-confusing.

Have you learned about nominal cases yet?  In English, and most languages for that matter that have case at all, you have two particular cases: nominative and accusative, which relate to how transitive verbs work.

Nominative case is your subject, generally: it's the thing that's performing the action.

Accusative case is the opposite: it's the object, and in a transitive statement it's the thing the action is being performed on.

ie, in "I ran" I is nominative.  In "I hit her", I is nominative again, and her is accusative.  You can tell because in English, pronouns change depending on their case: "I" is only ever nominative, and "her" is only ever accusative.

This all changes when you have an ergative-absolutive language.  Instead of nominative and accusative cases, you have the ergative and absolutive cases.

Ergative is your subject in transitive statements.

Absolutive case is your object in transitive statements, but it is also your SUBJECT in intransitive statements.

So in our two sentences above, "I ran" would have I as absolutive, and "I hit her" would have I as ergative and her as absolutive.

What this makes your language look like is this: If English were ergative-absolutive, and we assumed nominative became ergative and accusative because absolutive, this first (intransitive) sentence would become "Me ran" and the second (transitive) sentence would remain "I hit her".

I hope this helps.
ferretywrath Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for the watch!
Yitik Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013   Writer
No problem~
CrusaderMaria Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2011
Yes, I came her from the DD, but I stayed because I was mesmorized. You have mind blowing work. Thanks for sharing it with us!
Yitik Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2011   Writer
Very kind of you. Thanks for having a look!
Tsukiiyo Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Wow, you've got a beautiful gallery. That is why I invite you to join [link] .
That'd be really awesome if you accept.
Yitik Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2011   Writer
I'll have a look.
Tsukiiyo Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thx ♥
Bebopboy Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2011
Thank you for the feedback on "Winter In Warsaw".

I would just like to clarify some comments you have with it. the syntax I used such as "reigns" instead of rains, I used it to say that the snowfall reigns over the city (controls it).
For "tore me to sunder" is correct word choice also if I where to say tore me asunder it would be redundant because asunder means being torn into pieces.
Its a period piece as well I researched alot about Poland and people can learn alot about Poland just by reading the poem so the location is as important as the characters.
I havent read any other poems centered around similar events such as mine and with keeping in strict iambic pentameter/Villanelle while telling a story and I read alot of poetry on dA, if you find any let me know.
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