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Star Crossed Chapter 2

Chapter 2: The Curse

(music “And more…”)
19 - And more....mp3
The Curse

Kurzit awoke the following day in his bed after a strangely good nights rest. He had many wonderful dreams that night and felt like new. He smiled and thought briefly about little Cheer and what had transpired. Then he smiled more inwardly at a few of the dreams that he had just had that involved her. He hadn’t realized how unbearably cute he thought she was with only her own tail to cover her. Then again, he had a very vivid imagination when it came to things like that. He quickly shrugged it off thinking to himself ‘she had gotten what she wanted, and he had gotten what he wanted so everyone was happy for the moment, or at least he would be later today.’

He sat up and looked out the window noticing that the snow was still heavy outside and that it was already about midday if the clock over the High Hall was right. He gawked for a moment at how long he had slept. It couldn’t have been much past the mid of night when Cheer had departed back home. He shook his head and said aloud clearing his throat for the coming day.

“Well It’s been almost two years since I’ve slept in this late, I guess I was due for some rest.”

He nodded to himself and dismissed it at that, now walking over to his bedside table where the potion was. He stopped then noticing that the potion wasn’t there. He thought for a moment and realized that he had no recollection of setting the potion down last night before or after Cheer showed up.

"That little Snake!" he spoke suddenly.

Upon this realization, he looked to where he remembered putting Pearl’s wine. He immediately noticed it still there and gave a short sigh of relief before picking it up and securing it under his tunic at his belt and quickly getting dressed for the cold. He would have to go and find the clever little vixen, who he suspected had robbed him of his potion before the day got too far gone. He knew she probably just wanted an excuse for him to come looking for her today and didn’t blame her for being devious. He would just have to go get the potion back and congratulate her on her clever hands. He shook his head as he headed for the door wondering to himself why in the unholy hells Kitz couldn’t have had eyes for someone like her. She was after all a lot closer to Kitz’ age and would have certainly made a cute addition to the family. Instead, Kitz had to poke his intolerable little nose into his and Pearl’s life. He mused darkly to himself once again that Kitz had gotten what he deserved for destroying his happiness the first time around. After this thought, he opened the door and headed out into the village laying low and trying not to attract much attention as he went on towards Cheer’s home on the far side of the village.

He noticed as he walked that not many people had gone searching today. Perhaps they had finally given up. After all a week is a long time and even if he were still alive, Kitz could have made it a long way by now. He shrugged and shook his head realizing that in the brief few minutes he had been awake today that his mind had wandered to dark thoughts of Kitz three times already. He would have to control that and focus if he was going to get through all of this. He decided to distract himself with a brief run and assumed fox form as he ducked behind a few buildings to get out of sight.

He ran for about three minutes along the outskirts of their small village before reaching Cheer’s home. It was one of the largest houses in the village as Cheer’s family was well known to be quite rich. He immediately took his humanoid form once again as he got close. The first thing that he noticed was that all of the upstairs and downstairs shutters were shut and locked up. After that, he walked to the nearest window and looked in though a crack. He saw only darkness and vague shadows of an empty and unfurnished dining room. He stood again and backed away from the window shaking his head in a bit of confusion and disbelief.

“Could they have moved out this quickly?” he spoke aloud.

“Yes Indeed Kurzit,” Came a male voice from not far away.

He looked back suddenly quite tired of people sneaking up on him. He recognized one of the game hunters of the village by the name of Quinn Lettles. Quinn walked out from a shed near the house. He nodded looking at Kurzit and continued to speak.

“Yeah, they made quick work out of leaving just this morning. I couldn’t tell you why, but they just packed up their wagons and headed off. I’ve got no clue where they were going, but they made sure to let me know that I could move my wife and kids into the house if I wanted to. The Sire of the house seemed to be pretty hell-bent on not coming back too.”

Quinn Finally stopped next to him looking at him then back to the house and then back at him again.
Quinn continued seeing Kurzit’s baffled look.

“Did you have business with em? If they owed you something I’ll be glad to see what we can work out…”

He only shook his head and responded, “No, it wasn’t anything like that…Just surprised that’s all.”

Quinn nodded again and looked back at the house before continuing, “It surprised me as well. I knew they were planning on leaving sometime soon, but not this soon.”

He paused and shook his head then looking into the village before going on,

 “Well, I guess it could have had something to do with all the commotion around here recently, which could’ve spooked em.”

Kurzit looked at Quinn in affirmation, “Yeah, I guess when kids start going missing parents get nervous.”

Quinn took no time to respond to his statement, “Yeah, Sorry to hear about that. By the way Kurzit…Your little brother Kitz was a good kid.”

He nodded and looked at the ground in thoughtful sadness or so Quinn would believe.

Quinn didn’t miss a beat then and continued rambling on.

“And about that girl…It’s such a tragedy…”

Kurzit looked up from his thoughtfulness then now truly concerned.

“Girl? What girl?” He asked.

Quinn seemed surprised, “You mean you haven’t heard? Where have you been? The whole village has been talking about it all morning.”

He shook his head at Quinn in deep worry not at all liking the change of direction this day was suddenly taking he spoke plainly, “I slept…”

Quinn looked serious then, “Well you missed a lot then. It seems that the Harkins oldest son found a girl, one of us; out by their farmstead this morning…She was alive but weak when they found her. It seems like something had gotten to her. The shaman’s healed the wounds she had ok, but she’s still well…messed up somehow, like she’s sick or something…Everyone is confused about it.”

Kurzit winced at that, he had seen people injured to the point that they couldn’t fully recover and knew what that could mean. Some really bad snake bites left the victim changed forever. He had a feeling, though, that whatever did this was far more sinister than a snake.

He then nodded again at Quinn as he quickly turned and began jogging away saying, “Well, Thanks for the update, I gotta get going…I’ll talk to ya later!”

Quinn nodded and waved then and headed back to the shed to continue going through all the things that he had been left. Kurzit, though shaken by this strange series of odd happenings, was still determined to make his plan for Pearl work. He knew he would have to improvise. That meant making a quick run to the old witch's place before nightfall. Since he couldn’t get his potion back, he’d have to get another one. As he was rounding the back of Cheer’s old home, something caught his foot, and he tripped with a metallic clang. Quickly, he realized the source of his fall as he looked back to see a full sized long sword now laying on the ground behind him. It had been stabbed into the ground up to the hilt before his foot found it. It was a very good looking blade he could tell though he was no expert.

The blade had a pommel adorned with red, white, blue, green, and black metal wrapping around one another and the emblem of a blinded reptilian eye above that on the hilt. It looked pretty expensive, and he noticed a sheath adorned with what looked like carvings of brambles lying on the ground a few feet away. Since it appeared that Quinn hadn’t found it back here yet, he picked it up and carried it with him thanking the gods for his seemingly fortunate accident.
 
After briefly stopping by his home again to gather a few trinkets and gems for payment to the old witch he took to the forest on four legs running through the deep snow as a fox. He knew he would have to make great haste to get there and back by dusk. He also knew that with all this weirdness going on Pearl would be scared. The thought of Pearl huddling into his arms drove him onward.

Two hours later He arrived on schedule tired and panting at the old home of the witch. He took two-legged form as soon as he could see the little shanty cottage that the witch called home. He sat resting for a moment not wanting to seem desperate to the witch. Finally, he stood up having caught his breath and approached slowly looking around. There were clothes out on the old women’s lines to dry, and the smell of something spicy cooking was in the air. To him, it all seemed out of place somehow, though he couldn’t tell how. So he walked up to the front door of the cottage; he heard a light haggardly singing coming from the inside. He stopped at the door and prepared to knock when the door just opened.

“Who is it?” Came the elderly voice from inside.

He just looked in and opened his mouth but before he could speak the old women suddenly stepped out of the shadows just inside and into the doorway.

“Oh yes! Kurzit it’s you…What a surprise, come on in.”

He was not accustomed to arguing with powerful casters, so he nodded and did as he was bidden, stepping into the sparsely furnished one-room cottage looking around to notice a great black cauldron boiling over the fireplace and seeing a table set for two in the middle of the room.

The witch immediately shuffled over and sat at the table and asked curiously, “So, what brings you here Kurzit?”

She waited as he spoke, “Well, actually I decided to drop by and visit on business dear lady.”

The old women scowled at his last words saying immediately, “Non-sense! Non-sense! You’ll make no lady of me little Fox, you're about 200 years too late for that.”

He chuckled diplomatically at this then spoke again, “Well you see I came by to see if you had another potion like the ones I usually purchase from you…”

He paused to wait for a reaction when suddenly the old hag burst into hysterical laughter speaking in between breaths.

 “So…Let me guess…You used…the potions…and they didn’t work…”

He shrugged and turned his head sideways at the laughing fit, but decided quickly that it was as good a story as any he could have given her. He nodded,

“Yeah, that’s right, how did you know?”

She stopped laughing then and looked down at him with a smirk then spoke softly, “Why else would ‘you’ be back? Certainly not for anyone else’s sake, Yes?”

He was both worried and speechless at this comment and the underlying contempt it seemed to hold.
The old women then smiled wistfully and nodded.

“No, I jest! Of course there are more, they will be the same price as they usually are…”

He smiled at this seeming relieved by the old women’s sudden change of tone and began to speak but was cut off as the old women spoke again.

“Then again…If they did not work on their target then what good are they? What you need is something stronger, yes? Something that will drive the very essence of your inner soul mad with desire. Something that will have dizzying effects on your lover; mind, body, and soul.”

He stopped what he was about to say, now intrigued by what else the old women had to offer, He listened intently…

“You want this!” The witch said as she stood up and whirled over to a stool where a napkin covered something up.

She whisked the napkin away to reveal a small pink heart-shaped vial like the others he had bought from her, but this particular potion glowed with an inner radiance as he watched it.

“It will do better?” he spoke aloud then looking to the witch who responded with a shrill shriek.

“Of course it will, is that not what I just said!?”

He nodded quickly and spoke, “Yes you did.”

The witch then reiterated with a wave of her hand, “So you want it!”

He nodded again transfixed on the glowing vial that would be his loves new heart and asked calmly still looking at it.

“Yes, how much is it.?”

The old women then picked the potion up off the stool and sat it down in front of him before speaking.

“This one is much harder to make than the others. So it will be more costly…but…since I advised you poorly on your last purchase which ‘didn’t work.'”

The old women gave a short and steady slow and creepy laugh at that, seeing his eyes still completely glued to the potion in front of him she continued.

“I suppose I can cut you a deal. I will give you this potion for say…the price of three of the others and a small favor."

Without question, he immediately began to pull out the coins, gems, and goods to pay for this wonderful new potion and spoke as he did, “And the favor?”

“It’s very small, really it is…Just promise me here and now that you will put the potion to good use…Today!”
 
He nodded and looked up at the witch smiling suddenly, “Of course I will, today…”

He handed her the small pile of riches that would pay for the potion, she examined the items and seemed satisfied with them saying, “Yes, these things will do nicely, may I have those robes you’re wearing as well? The cold out here is gripping, and I can’t get very many new clothes.”

He was only too happy to comply after all he had more robes at home and the old women did need to stay warm. Besides, he had fur to help him on the way back to the village. So he handed her his robes after taking them off and picking up his purchase, and then he turned and started walking away with single-minded intent. When he got to the door, he immediately changed into a fox as the old women stepped out behind him. Seeming to remember something suddenly, the old woman gave a gasp and yelled.

“Oh yes, there is one more thing!”

He stopped and looked back listening as the witch continued.

“That potion is used slightly differently than the others…It is meant for you to drink. It will work on whomever, you please after that.”

He thought this was odd, but then again he wasn’t the one who made the potion, and so he nodded, turned and ran off into the woods back towards the village. The old woman smiled darkly as she watched him go. She whispered then to the air then.

“Run along now Kurzit and get what you really deserve. Little Kitz didn’t come to see my flowers this week, and it’s all because of you. You sent him carelessly into the unknown, and now soon you too shall be cast aside by those you love.”

Her eyes twinkled at that last word as for a brief second her shadow took on the form of a young woman with large draconic wings, long ears, and a short but sharp tipped tail. She walked back inside then and took the robes he had given her over to the bubbling cauldron. She sifted through them for a moment until she found what she wanted. From the robes, she pulled out a single hair of Kurzit’s. She spoke softly as she dropped the piece of hair into the cauldron with a hiss and a red crumbling heart shaped mist completing her ritual and sealing Kurzit’s fate.

“Freely given from you to me dear Kurzit..."

The old women chuckled again more vigorously than before as she turned back towards the door looking directly above it to the map of the Fox village.
 
“Ahh…my pets, all of you…what would I do without you?”

And with that she went on about her day.

The greatest spell

Less than two hours later Kurzit again arrived back at the village. He immediately took humanoid form as soon as he got home. There he redressed himself in winter robes and immediately headed towards Pearl’s home as it was already dusk. He could wait no longer for this, he had to act now. Already he could feel the anticipation threatening to drive him mad. It now weighed heavily against his every thought. He arrived at her home and took up a hiding spot under her window to wait until he saw lights or heard her voice. He waited for about half an hour before he began to hear movement from her room and saw the dim trickle of candlelight from her window. He thought to himself ‘This is it’ and took out the potion starring at it and praying that it worked.
 
He closed his eyes then and made a whispered prayer to each of the gods of magic and without a second thought he pulled the stopper on the potion and drank it down. For a second, he felt nothing as he sat there basking in the unknown. Then he began to feel a tingling running down his throat, and warmth began spreading though out his body. He glowed with an ethereal visage for a moment and then everything seemed to go back to normal as the warmth faded now replaced with the bitter cold once again. He was ready, so he stood up and lifted himself up to peek over her window sill. He looked in and saw Pearl sitting on her bed with a single candle. She was wrapped tightly up in her blankets. She wasn’t doing anything, just sitting there as if in deep thought. He watched her for a few moments before knocking on her window lightly. She jumped at the sound and looked over toward the window to see Kurzit standing outside. She immediately scooted over to the window and opened it. The cold air blew into the warm room as she shivered against it looking down at Kurzit who was doing his best to appear as pitiful as possible.

“Kurzit, What are you doing here?” Pearl spoke out the window.

He just shrugged and shivered meekly looking back at her with a slight mustered smile and taking a cue from little Cheer’s book of tricks he responded softly, “Freezing…apparently.”

Pearl immediately gave an honest, concerned and protective look down at him and untangled herself from her blankets only wearing a thin night robe underneath. She leaned down and helped him into the window shutting it behind him just after. Without hesitation, she sat back down on her bed and beckoned for him to join her which he did with no delay. She then sat behind him with her legs touching his and her chest to his back and wrapped them both up tightly in her blankets.

“Your freezing Kurzit, you're going to make yourself sick,” she gently scolded him as she hugged him tight to warm him.
Kurzit sat still enjoying the sudden and unexpected attention from Pearl. He hadn’t really been able to get this close to her since they broke up and was in heaven at the moment. He had not expected the potion to work this way, this quickly, or this well.

Pearl continued to speak then in her normal soothing tones, “So…How are you holding up little friend?”
 
He shuddered lightly at those words from her. That was what she used to call him when he was down, and she was trying to cheer him up. Just hearing them from her calmed him to the soul and thawed the seemingly endless cold that he had felt since they had been apart. It took him a few minuets, but he finally responded with a comforted sigh.

“Honestly better, now Pearl.” He leaned back slightly into her as she did the same leaning back into the headboard on her bed. The two of them relaxed together for the first time in almost six months.
 
“You know Kurzit, I’ve been hoping you would visit me like this for a few weeks now…and this whole thing with Kitz disappearing and The Harkins boy finding Shari as she is…It’s all just too much…What I’m saying is I don’t know if we should get back together yet…but Could we just do this more often from now on and see how things go…?”

He smiled blissfully then feeling warm and tingly all over, he replied to her turning his head to the side nuzzling his head into her neck, “Sure Love…I’d really like that…we can see how it goes…”

With that, he leaned his head back and she tilted her head down they shared a brief kiss…Kurzit felt a pleasureful and energetic warmth all throughout his body as they did. Warmth like he had never felt before, it was like pure bliss. Pearl; however, fell back after the kiss complaining about a sudden dizzy spell. After a few moments, it passed for her, and they both wrote it off as a fluke. Then she and Kurzit laid there until dawn. Pearl glad for the comfort of her old lover and Kurzit lost to the suddenly happy thoughts now racing through his mind.

What Kurzit did not know but would too soon find out was that it was he with a simple display of hope and affection that had earned himself another chance with Pearl that cold evening. Despite the young girl’s insecurities, she was still good at heart, and nothing would change that. After all the greatest spell is one that uses no magic at all. The witch’s potion, on the other hand, had thus far had no effect. Its true purposes were now only beginning to be seen. A simple kiss the night before had set it all into motion. A series of events that would forever seek to unravel any life he could ever build for himself. It was a curse, but not one contingent on possessions or happenstance. It was a curse meant to test the truth behind one’s actions and reveal what truly lay beyond. A curse that presides over mind, body, and soul.

The Truth Revealed

After that night, Kurzit and Pearl saw one another at least once a day for a meal, a walk, and sometimes to relax and comfort one another as they had done the first night. They had both decided to take it slow and to let nature do the rest as it had done before. Kurzit enjoyed this when he could over that time, but was beginning to notice odd occurrences throughout his everyday life. He always had trouble sleeping now, and he would often get strange and sudden dizzy spells at various times throughout the day, usually when he was walking somewhere. He also had trouble remembering directions now. It wasn’t, however, until he thought about a small detail he had heard Pearl say the night he drank the potion that he began to think more about what was really happening.

Pearl had said that Shari was the girl that was found with some strange affliction a few days back. He had heard that she seemed to get worse everyday and wasn’t expected to live much longer. To this point, he hadn’t thought about it, but Kurzit realized that he had known Shari once. In fact, he had known her quite well. He and Shari used to be a couple before he had found the guts to approach Pearl and the other more eligible ladies. She was from a poor family in the village and was nowhere near as attractive or talented as Pearl. None the less, to an inexperienced young cub like he had been a few years ago she seemed, at the time, quite entertaining. It also hadn’t hurt that she had been his first venture into the realms of sex either. They had only been together for a few months, but when Kurzit had decided to break it off, she was devastated. He really hadn’t seen her again since then. There weren’t very many that even knew that he and she had been together at all since they hadn’t gone around telling people about their many delinquent encounters.

Thinking about all of this gave Kurzit a very bad feeling in his gut, and he decided that he had to go see Shari. So on the fifth day he went to the high hall and asked to see her. He was shown in and left alone with her as she lay there weak and quivering in a small straw bed. He spoke to her for a while listening to what she had to say about all that had happened to her. She claimed to have been walking alone in the woods thinking when she felt cold all of a sudden and simply passed out. The cuts and bruises they found on her had come from falling down a small embankment into the Harkins family farmstead. Kurzit continued to get the details from her for over two hours. At one point, one of the elder shaman’s came in to check on her and noted that they hadn’t been able to get her to talk that much since she had been here. Kurzit found it odd and disturbing at the same to that she would talk to him and not to a shaman that may be able to save her life.
During the course of the conversation he learned that she had been feeling sad for a long time before all this happened though she didn’t say about what until he was about to leave walking towards the door. At that point, she spoke the last words Kurzit expected to hear.

“Kurzit, I still love you…”
 
At that, Kurzit just felt bad for her and promised to come back to see her again soon. Then he left quickly saying nothing else.

By four days later Pearl was starting to warm back up to him more favorably though he knew that they still had a very long way to go getting back to where they once were. The day before, in a moment of girlish revelation during a playful tickling contest she had admitted to him that she still loved him even despite all that had happened between them. This pleased him to no ends, and he made sure to let her know that at every turn. He would laugh, play and roll around with her until they both were too tired and short of breath to laugh anymore.

On the fifth day, Pearl had claimed that she was feeling a small bit ill and was staying home most of the day. This once again left him alone with his thoughts; at least until later when he planned to sneak over to Pearl’s for a late visit. He had put a great deal of thought into what could be wrong with Shari, but couldn’t think of anything to do to help her. It was while he was thinking about this very thing that a young shaman found him and informed him that Shari wasn’t expected to live much longer and had requested to see him. He wasn’t happy at this grim news but sucked it up and went to the high hall to see her anyway, he had promised her he would after all.

When Kurzit arrived, he found her family and many of her friends all around the area outside the room. One of the shamans escorted him inside and whispered that she was very weak and asked that he try not to excite her. He agreed then went inside to see her. Much to Kurzit’s dismay she bawled almost the entire time she spoke with him. He didn’t have a clue what to tell someone that was dying especially someone like Shari. He did his best to keep her calm, but it was difficult. At one point, she asked him for a kiss to say goodbye to it all by. He didn’t deny her request and went to give her a small kiss to satisfy her, but before he could pull away from her, she grabbed onto him with a sudden burst of strength and kissed him deeply. At that point, it began to feel very good for him. He didn’t know how to explain it but his thoughts and his feelings surged with blissful sensations. Her lips were so warm and soft to his senses when she had seemed so cold and sickly just seconds before.

Shari shuddered as she held his head and kissed for about 30 seconds, making strange quick almost pained moaning noises into their kiss the whole time. Then suddenly in the space of a single second all motion on her part stopped abruptly, and her grip on his head went limp. Kurzit pulled away in surprise then as her hands and arms fell away from his head. He looked down at her now unmoving form. Her expression was absolutely blank and seemingly devoid of any hint of emotion at all. Then he stopped as horrific realization had dawned upon him. He held his breath and listened only to hear absolute and complete silence. There was no light rhythmic breathing from her…Shari was dead. He stood for a moment looking down as horror gripped him again then all at once it hit him.

Kurzit screamed as loud as his voice would carry and ran outside the room…He saw all of Shari’s family react as he did many standing and moving towards the room. He simply could not bring himself to stop running and ran straight out of the high hall towards his home. He arrived there a minute later and slammed the door leaning against the closed door and slowly sliding down to sit there on the floor. ‘Had he done that’ he thought in disbelief. He sat there in a panic for a few seconds when from the darkest reaches of his mind came a voice that was not his own.

He heard Shari’s voice crying out in terror screaming "You killed me! Why?! I loved you! I just wanted to love you!"

Kurzit grabbed his head as the world began to spin. He slammed his head into the door behind him causing no small amount of pain, but still he could hear her calling out to him screaming at him. He yelled then.

“No! No! Get out of my head! I didn’t mean to! Please!”

After that, he heard the screams growing more distant as if falling away down an endless tunnel. Finally, after a moment he stood gasping terrified and labored breaths as he heard only the sound of the wind outside once again. He sat there for nearly two minuets before hearing a new voice. Thankfully this one came from outside his mind but still sounded like Shari’s voice, but more vital and confident than she had ever been.
 
“Are you enjoying your newfound labors of love yet?” Said the voice as Kurzit looked up to see Shari sitting there on his bed with her legs crossed wearing a quaint dress. He shuddered and shook as she spoke.

 “Y…you….Dead. You’re dead! You can’t be here! You’re out there…”

“Very good observation Kurzit,” She said back at him standing as he did as well. She advanced on him while she continued.

“What’s the matter you always said you wanted a kiss that could last forever, now you have it…and still your not happy!?”

She stopped in front of him as he backed against a wall too horrified by the implications to speak. She spoke again then.

“This is all that’s left of me now that you’ve finished…And I’m here to tell you about what’s happened to you. Consider this Mercy!” The last statement was yelled and to Kurzit seemed to shake his house as Shari continued.

“That witch, she didn’t like what you did to Kitz! Yeah, that’s right, I know now! You’re a worthless brother sending your own family to die just to keep him away from your ‘beloved’.”

Kurzit just shook his head and pressed more firmly again the door behind him as she went on now more calmly.

“You’re a cursed soul now Kurzit. You’ll never again know peace…not after today. Your kiss shall bring doom, and your touch shall bring down misfortune upon all around you. You will never again know your way and will always be lost without help from another! Your mere gaze shall yield destruction and pain wherever you look. You’ll have to watch everyone around you who loves you die slowly growing weaker and weaker every day like I did then, just when you think it can get no worse…You’ll try to sleep to escape the pain…But no! I’ll be there when you do…We all will!”

Kurzit began to see ghostly images of both Cheer and Pearl wavering before him seeming dead to the world. His teeth chattered, and he shivered in the cold.

“You haven’t finished them yet, but we both know you will one day…And then…They to will be ALL YOURS…” Shari continued to taunt then and laughed an insane laugh that grew louder and louder to his ears even after he covered them. He shrieked like a scolded cub then.

“NOOOO!”

Suddenly He felt the door give way behind him, and he felt himself falling backward only to be caught and picked up. He looked back to see one of his neighbors looking at him in shock and then looked around again like a frightened animal to see no ghostly apparitions and suddenly no Shari standing there inside his home. The laughter was gone as soon as someone else had gotten there. His mind raced with the revelations that he was just given, he knew that they were true; he felt it because he deserved it all. He shivered at the thought of Pearl becoming like Shari, just a husk lost in his mind tormenting him forever. He didn’t ever want to have to watch her die. Then he froze and starred off into space. He remembered one thing that Shari had said it echoed in his mind, ‘You’ll have to watch everyone around you who loves you die slowly growing weaker and weaker every day.’ Then more to Pearl’s words from two days ago came next, ‘Deep down, you know I still love you Kurzit'.

He knew right then and there that he had to get away from it all, he had to leave now, or it might be too late for Pearl. She had to stay home today, she was already getting sick. She would die if he stayed. With that Kurzit yelped and broke free from his now very confused neighbors. He ran back inside his house and quickly scrambled gathering his important belongings including a certain sword that he had found near Cheer’s old house a few days before. As soon as he had gathered the bulk of his things he assumed fox form and darted past his neighbors into the woods beyond. He kept going for hours driven by a primal instinct that he thought could save Pearl, the one he loved most of all. The voice of Shari taunted him as he went never leaving him alone until he could no longer stand from exhaustion and cold…Finally hours later he collapsed into the snow looking around him at a spinning world having absolutely no clue where he was or how to get back to the village.

(Music “Mysterious Atmosphere”)
25 - MYSTERIOUS ATMOSPHERE.mp3

A New World

Kurzit awoke to being cold and hungry. He was lying in the snow as a fox. The world was quiet, and he didn’t hear the voices for the moment. He looked around him to find a vast and unfamiliar forest, he tried to get his bearings, but he could not. He turned then to magic to ask of the divine where he was, and still no answers came. After he was sure that he was completely lost and that there was nothing that he could do about it, he just picked a direction and walked hoping to find death’s embrace a warmer place than the world around him was or at least something to eat.

Kurzit would travel the forests alone living as a fox would, his mind done with, walking until he passed out and hunting for food until he began to lose track of time. It would be many months later perhaps even years, he could not tell before he would meet anyone to pull him out of his self-induced forest trance. He ended up wondering into a forest with no animals where left was as good as right and up might as well have meant backward. He would wander here absolutely lost and completely unaware of where he was with only a vague understanding of who he was until he came across a great fortress of stone with towers jutting from the earth like monuments.

Here he would first meet the conclave of wizards who were very interested to know exactly how he managed to get through the lost forest. After being reawakened to the world around him with other people there his only response to the wizards questioning was “Perhaps what is already lost can only be found in the lost woods, but what do I know?”
So noting that he was a caster they decided to induct him as a wizard and test his meddle right then and there. “After all he’s here now, and it is convenient.” He heard one of them say after he fell to the ground as the voice of Shari began to return…Whispering to him of all that had happened once again. ‘Her again, that’s all I need,' he thought to himself darkly when she did. To stay sane through all this Kurzit’s mind had changed. He felt darker and more sinister than ever before. But that is just how it was going to have to be, and he knew it.

Three paths
(Unfinished section)
(Music “Love Awakening” Kitz Playlist)
21 Love Awakening.wma

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