As previously mentioned, it's dark. So dark that you forget whether or not your eyes are open. The Shadow Walker can side-step almost anything, including this darkness, but he chooses not to. He quiets the hunger for change that he was born with.
Just for now, he imagines he is nothing but normal. His fingers dance forward, gently brushing the edge of something flat. Splintery. Rough. Wood; a shelf, maybe. Yes, a shelf. There are several cold, smooth objects on it. Vials. The smallest finger-tap fills the room with a high-pitched noise. This vial is definitely full.
“Hello? Who’s there?” A suspicious, deep voice fills the silence.
“I,” the Shadow Walker says easily, smoothly. He has awaited this moment for years. He has played this moment through his mind a thousand times.
There is an uneasy silence.
“You gave me a lock of your hair a long, long time ago,” the Shadow Walker continues.
“As you gave me a lock of yours. To remember you by,” the man says in a breathy voice. It is barely a whisper. “Brother, is it really you?”
There is a shuffling noise.
“I- I don’t know. I’ve forgotten,” the Shadow Walker says, surprising even himself with his honesty.
There is more shuffling. The Shadow Walker can hear the man’s heart beat. He puts one hand one hand on the boy’s face, then reaches for the top of his head.
The man gasps. “Zyruxy! You haven’t grown at all!”
“So that’s what my name is? Zyruxy?”
The man tsks his tongue. “You always forgot things, before, but I didn’t know it had gotten this bad… you don’t even remember me, your same-face?” He sounds hurt.
“No, no. I never forgot you.” All the same, the Shadow Walker’s voice sounds unsure.
The man gives a small chuckle. He moves his hands to the boy’s cheeks, his chin, and upper lip. Then his shoulders. “Of course, we’re not much of same-faces anymore. You are hardly more than a boy, and I- and I am a man! A fairly old man, at that.”
“I’m sorry. Time passed quickly for me.”
“And slowly for me. You live a thousand lives, my brother. It’s how you live. It’s nothing to apologize for.” More shuffling as the man turns away. “Come, sit. You didn’t just come to talk to your twin, did you? Something else is going on… something that involves this tribe- my tribe?”
The Shadow Walker’s eyes open up to the darkness as they become more rounded and owl-like. To only the Shadow Walker, the room becomes more visible.
The walls are crammed with shelves, drawers, and cabinets, filled with jars and vials. There are three roughly built chairs in the center of the room. One is where Cimarron, the Shadow Walker’s twin, sits.
He looks nothing like what the Shadow Walker remembers. Cimarron certainly looks nothing like the Shadow Walker. His hair has stripes of gray. There are shadows of wrinkles on his face.
7 years ago