To have a dream of life again

Dys, Melli, Scrapie, and Morquio watched from high above atop the lair as Thrax pawed at the ground in the graveyard below. Two tiny forms–Imperials, Dys guessed from the shape–lay curled up near him. Neither hatchling moved.

Crohn sighed, watching his fellow Fae hatchlings. The pearl-colored Fae knew what Thrax was doing. He understood what death was due to his adoptive mother, Betes. He knew what was wrong with the hatchlings, why they did not move or cry. He knew why Thrax was digging.

The mighty Imperial, the only one in the whole clan, was digging his sons’ graves. Riberi and Tulis, the limp hatchlings near him, were dead. They had been for several minutes now.

Nothing Ponti did could keep her rambunctious Fae children from sneaking out of the lair to witness the strange activity that Thrax was doing. At two days old, death meant little to them. They did not understand it. They wouldn’t for a few more days, if Ponti had her way.

“What is he doing to them?” Dys asked.

“Is that a new kind of game?” Scrapie questioned.

“It doesn’t look very fun, just lying there, all quiet and still,” Melli mumbled with a pout.

“Crohn? What is he doing to them?” Morquio asked, turning to look at the older hatchling.

Crohn had no right to explain it to them. But if he left it as a game, they might try to reenact it later. The last thing he wanted was for one of them to bury themselves alive.

“He’s burying them,” he finally said.

“Burying? Like what a mole does?” Scrapie asked.

“That’s burrowing, not burying!” Dys chirped, swatting his brother.

“What’s burying mean? Is that why he’s digging?” Melli asked, peering over the ledge to see Thrax cease digging. “Is he burying right now?”

“Burying is when you put something in the ground and cover it,” Crohn explained, looking away. “Like dead dragons.”

“Dead?” Melli repeated.

“Dead is when–“

“Dys! Melli! Scrapie! Morquio! Where are you?”

The hatchlings jumped at Pall’s voice. Before they could scramble away, the blue Fae zipped over the lair and jolted when he saw them. Spitting a curse, the adult zipped toward them. There was no time to scatter before the five were swiftly gathered up.

“What were you thinking? I told you to leave Thrax alone!” Pall scolded.

“I told them not to! They didn’t listen!” Crohn cried.

“Dad, what’s dead mean?” Melli asked.

Pall fixed Crohn with such a glare that the Fae wanted to fall through the stone and into the planet’s core.

“That is something to be explained later. Not now,” Pall said firmly. “Right now, you will all go back to the nest. You’re grounded.”

The trio of siblings, plus the adopted Morquio, made an instant ruckus. Pall herded them back down to the ground and toward the nest, where Ponti was waiting worriedly. Pall gave Crohn a swat and ordered him home before guiding his children to his mate.

Crohn didn’t dare tempt fate any further. He went home to huddle by his mother, who nuzzled him before gazing sadly at Remia across the lair. The Wildclaw was surrounded by her immediate family–her daughter Laria, son-in-law Malar, and her granddaughters Shior and Psitta. Once Thrax was through with his sons, he’d join them in comforting his heartbroken mate.

Crohn buried his face in his mother’s flank, guilt hitting him. He wished he was as innocent as Dys, Melli, Scrapie, and Morquio were. He wished he didn’t know what death and burial and such were.

The little Fae siblings¬†likely wouldn’t be that innocent by nightfall. He’d destroyed that.

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Day 145

1 - Crohn growth

2 - Dys growth

3 - Melli growth

4 - Scrapie growth

5 - Morquio growth

6 - Lindro growth

7 - Neo growth

So much growing to do! Gah!

8 - ThraxRemia hatch

Time to hatch the final nest until HistoFlin gets here!

9 - hatchlings

Imperials! Yes!

10 - Riberi - beriberi

First is Riberi…from beriberi…

11 - Tulis - botulism

Last is Tulis…from botulism…

12 - lair pre-flip

Now to see if I get to keep any of these two beauties…

13 - bye Riberi

Well, I don’t get to keep Riberi. Ugh…

14 - bye Tulis

…Or Tulis. GDI, Pinkerton, what is with you and the wipeouts lately?

15 - exalt Riberi 1

16 - exalt Riberi 2

Goodbye, Riberi…

17 - exalt Tulis 1

18 - exalt Tulis 2

Goodbye, Tulis…

19 - food gathering

Have to gather food again because my lair is full of pigs!

20 - material drop

Writing! Yay!

Day 144

1 - Crohn growth

2 - Dys growth

3 - Melli growth

4 - Scrapie growth

5 - Morquio growth

6 - Lindro growth

7 - Neo growth

So many babies! So much growth!

8 - ThraxRemia one day

One day…

9 - food gathering

Had to get food again today. Ugh…

10 - Somia chest apparel

11 - Legion chest apparel

Got a Gilded Chest from familiar bonding, so more apparel is given out to my dergs!

12 - battle item drop

Oh, goodie. DEATH STREAK time once again.

13 - party generation

Time to see who all goes.

14 - Lio

Lio’s first battle! Oh dear…

15 - Ande

Hello, Ande. Been a while since we last saw you.

16 - Lizotte

And Lizotte rounds out the team.

17 - party

Off to Woodland Path we go, since Ande is Level 8. Let’s go!

Battle 1

battle 1

after battle 1

Good thing I have so many Potions for Lio…

Battle 2

battle 2

after battle 2

Trying to keep one Level 1 derg alive in here is easier than trying to keep two Level 1 dergs alive in here. *mourns Tero*

Battle 3

battle 3

after battle 3

Level up! That is useless until after these fights!

Battle 4

battle 4

after battle 4

Cockatrices are such a pain in the butt to beat! Augh!

Battle 5

battle 5

after battle 5

Halfway there… Keep on living, Lio!

Battle 6

battle 6

after battle 6

These are an even bigger pain in the butt, especially because I have a Light dragon in my party! *mourns Leth*

Battle 7

battle 7

after battle 7

Almost there…

Battle 8

battle 8

after battle 8

Nearly…

Battle 9

battle 9

after battle 9

First triple battle! Not that bad, honestly.

Battle 10

battle 10

after battle 10

And a Charger finishes the streak off! Yes!

RESULTS

Lio level 3

Congrats on surviving, Lio! Good job!

18 - Festive Favors purchase

19 - Melli and goblin

Again, not a lot of holiday items were found so I spent 32,000 treasure to get more Charged Sprockets. Grabbed the familiar this time. Now I only have the vista left…

20 - Festive Favors last purchase

…And I found a guy in the Auction House selling over 25 Charged Sprockets for 12 gems. I had 13 gems, so I did it. The vista is now mine.

I have all the holiday items now! Yay!

Born in this world as it all falls apart

Zone pushed dirt over Tay’s body, burying her lifeless ruby-red frame amongst the graves of their clanmates. Another daughter had been lost to the plague. Zone felt like it should hurt more on the inside than it currently did.

Maybe he’d just grown numb to the death. Expectant of the fact that at least one of his kids would die with every hatching. Weary of clinging to hope.

Tay dealt with, the tomato-red Guardian lumbered back to the lair where Safe lay with their surviving daughters–a cherry-red Mirror named Lindro and a blood-red Guardian named Neo. Both were still breathing and were eating heartily. They would survive to grow up. This much, Zone could simply tell.

Sharp chirping made him look over his shoulder at the swarm of Fae that had swamped their lair yesterday. Pall and Ponti’s nest had yielded three rambunctious Fae children that all survived the plague. With them was Crohn and the orphaned Morquio, found out in the boneyard yesterday while Zone had gone scavenging. Together, the five Fae made quite the mischievous pack.

At least¬†Zone no longer needed to worry about Malar’s daughters, Shior and Psitta. Both had grown into gorgeous adults and had abandoned the childish games they had once played. Thankfully, this meant Crohn was safe from their endless curiosity. They now had bigger things to poke and prod at than a scrappy Fae baby.

Zone sighed, resting beside Safe. To think it had been almost five months since he had met Safe and started this lair. Five months since that first failed nest, since he’d found Winse and Pizzicato and Malihini out in the wasteland. Five months since he’d found Bola’s egg in Wind territory.

Five months since the plague and the deaths had started happening to them.

Lindro nosed her father and squeaked, little tail wagging. Zone smiled.

He had to think of the positives here. He still had two of his three in this clutch. He could’ve lost them all again. Take the good with the bad.

Things would get worse again soon. He’d best enjoy the break while he had it.