October 29, 2013

The Labyrinth's Lessons - A Short Fan-Fiction Piece

A crack in the ground expelled a gust of hot air that blew the edge of Destiny's cloak in the air as she ran, desperate to find a shadow before the eagles possessed by them caught up to her. Panting, Destiny checked every dead end and turned at random. She heard the sound of dropping metal, and caught a glance of a dagger having fallen from its sheath. Still, she refused to turn back. Time is precious, Destiny reminded herself, And I mustn't lose any while I'm stuck here. 

Destiny threw the hood of her ankle-long cloak over her face, pulling the sides of it around to cover her knees as she sat scrunched in a dark corner. Destiny recognized this particular corner, as she had been so bored one day as to write a message on it. Sunlight for a Swashbuckler, it read, scrawled just off to the side in Grizzleheimian and lastly in loopy, uneven cursive. Destiny kept the phrase in her mind, thinking hard about the eagle shades turning the corners. They didn't turn to see her, swinging their spears in their hobbling gait. Destiny wondered when they'd fly off, for they were eagles. Occasionally, a sharp-eyed Archer would spot Destiny, but turn back to their normal duties. She wasn't quite sure as to why they passed her off, but one truth in Destiny's mind remained. No losses meant survival, even if it meant no wins. When the last of the troop of six shades passed, Destiny leaped from the corner and ran down the slowly crumbling stone corridor, being sure to leap over hot air vents and bits of debris. She, as always, landed effortlessly.

Four days had the swashbuckler been traveling alone in the Labyrinth at Knossos. Hawkules, having obliged in holding the door, had let Argos into the maze. However, upon finding Prince Theseus, he strayed away, leading the prince back while leaving Destiny in a fight. Over the course of the undetermined dusks and dawns, Destiny's allegiances had been all over until now, when all that was left was herself. Stopping, Destiny leaned against a wall, breathing hard in the warm climate and closing her eyes. Short, insistent puffs of air sounded from the other side of the barrier. Destiny recognized it to be one of the resident Minotaur's sons. Fortunately, the Minotaur himself had remained in the darkened hallway that she dared not visit.

Letting her hood fall, Destiny ran on, investigating the maze. She saw walls that she had marked, and others that she hadn't but fortunately recognized. Destiny's choices, at this point, were rationalized only by instinct. She had learned to take quick turns after the theoretical first day in the maze, and today they were no less important. Within minutes, however, Destiny faced another wall. From her torn coat, she removed two important objects; A chipped, gold-rimmed pocketwatch; and a piece of white chalk that she had found on the ground. Approaching the dead end, Destiny checked the time and wrote it down without recognizing whether it was in the morning or evening. She didn't know, at this point. Under it, she signed her name, Captain Destiny Devereaux.

Turning back to the maze, Destiny heard the oncoming patrol of eagles. Realizing that she had to hide once more, Destiny assumed her hiding position, pinning her cloak around her coat, only intensifying the massive heat.The pattering of talons on stone grew only closer. Destiny felt for her belt, where one of her daggers had been sheathed. She thought back to a run several hours back. Could it have been days? Destiny discarded the thought and centered on her losing of the twin blade somewhere in the maze and probably picked up by one of the shade patrols by then. Peeking around the dead end's corner, Destiny ducked back a second too late. An eagle shade, massive with thick armor plating, stood over her, spear pointed.

"And what doings do you have here?" he growled, following Destiny as she scooted into a corner. Thoughts flooded into her mind, reducing the battle tactics to nothing. She was lost, for one. She didn't know how long she had been lost or how long she had left. The shade remained still, watching pointedly as Destiny stood.

"I came here with nothing to lose," she admitted, leaning on the wall, "And I might as well leave with nothing won." Her own values echoing in her mind made her snicker a little. No wins, no losses; No cost, no prize, and one maze. It all fit together too well. Destiny unpinned her cloak, feeling the contained heat escape. Sweat still lined her brow. She looked at her free palm, then back up at the shade.

"If I came here with nothing of worth," she concluded, "Then it's never too late to make something, right?" Balling her hand into a fist, plant tendrils starved for water dragged the shade down, raising its spear and shield to where they couldn't be reached. Destiny took the shield and put it on, realizing that it covered her back in a fashion similar to a turtle's shell. Yet, it reflected the light from plasma drips and fended off some of the heat. Claiming the spear for herself, Destiny nodded in goodbye to the shade. She took one step, and then two. She lifted her pocketwatch.

"Alright, it's a trade, then," she decided, throwing the watch down to where the eagle will see it. "Time is as precious as victory." The eagle didn't saw another word. He shrieked, sending an echoing scream throughout the maze. Destiny then awaited the sounds of birdflight. She ran out into the maze, craning her neck so that she was protected by the shield. If she was lucky, she would beat the three minotaurs as well as the eagles, even though the thundering hoofsteps proved otherwise. Somewhere in her withering hope was a door, though, one held shut by feathered arms until she returned.

"If I'm lucky, Hawk will still remember my name," Destiny laughed, "Let's find out."

---

The story behind the writing of this post was funny. I had, from start to finish, completed the Labyrinth maze with neither map nor quest helper (AND without friends!) in one hour, seven minutes, and about six seconds. I had recorded everything for publishing on Youtube and to the site, but when I checked my recording back, something had gone horribly wrong. I had taken no screenshots but one, and that is all I had to go with when I was writing this post. Ultimately, I decided not to include it, forcing myself to use my writing to bait and reel in readers, instead of flashy pictures like older posts.

A foolish choice, many bloggers have said. However, I wanted to see how much my writing was really worth. So, here's a question relating to the story. What is Destiny's greatest source of confusion? Any answer relating to the story is valid as long as you can back your answer up with evidence from the story. Comment below to be entered in a raffle to win a Companion Training Tome! On Thursday, I will raffle off the names of all valid answers and post the winner with my HalloNaNoWeen post. The winner will be prompted to e-mail me to receive their code.

I hope you enjoyed that story! I wrote it in precisely half an hour, from start to finish. As always, Keep Traveling!





4 comments:

  1. Your insane but congrats on making it out alone.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Roslyn SilvertalonOctober 29, 2013

    Having never done the Labyrinth, nor even gone to Aquila yet at all, I don't know any of the context for this story, so I had some great sources of confusion myself. However, Destiny appears to be confused because:

    1. She's lost in a maze. ("Destiny ran on, investigating the maze. She saw walls that she had marked, and others that she hadn't but fortunately recognized.")

    2. There are enemies around every corner. ("desperate to find a shadow before the eagles possessed by them caught up to her.")

    3. She's lost her weapon. ("She heard the sound of dropping metal, and caught a glance of a dagger having fallen from its sheath.")

    4. She apparently is running out of time. ("Time is precious, Destiny reminded herself, And I mustn't lose any while I'm stuck here.")

    5. She realizes the purposelessness of her entering the maze in the first place. ("I came here with nothing to lose," she admitted, leaning on the wall, "And I might as well leave with nothing won.")

    I realize I'm just spitting back a summary of the whole thing, but seriously, I know NOTHING about the Labyrinth except the legend in Greek Mythology. I also felt obliged to comment because no one else had.

    P.S.: Thanks for changing the comment options so you don't need to sign in with some kind of ID. I can comment now!

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  3. I myself like reading more than screenshots, so I am glad for the story. Destiny's greatest source of confusion is probably two things: the twists and turns of the Labyrinth *and* the length of time she has been in there. Being a clever lass, she is trying to minimize her confusion by signing her name and giving the time (from her pocket watch)whenever she comes to a new corner. Losing her companions, some of her weapons, and enduring the sweltering heat doesn't help her mental state either, so it is a wee bit stressful for her!

    Anne did do the Labyrinth solo, but she had the quest helper on which was a definite help! The map though, in of itself, is also useful.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Roslyn, you've won! Shoot me an e-mail, please. :)

    ReplyDelete

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