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Memoirs of a Dead Girl

 
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Charlie Nausikaa
Adventurer
Adventurer


Joined: 22 Nov 2005
Posts: 145

Location: House of Retribution in the Old Market District of RhyDin
8,740 Silver Nobles


PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 9:24 pm    Post subject: Memoirs of a Dead Girl Reply with quote

“Do you know that when you die, your brain melts and leaks out through your ears?”

Charlie Jericho turned from her kitchen window, withdrawing her hands from the soapy dish water to focus her green eyes in on the speaker. Disbelief clearly registered on her features at such a question being asked of her.

The speaker straightened in his seat at the kitchen table at the stern glare, evidently feeling the need to clarify the question. “What I mean to ask is.... do you still have your brain?”

She picked up a dish towel, drying her pruning hands on it. “Perhaps G-Boss did not explain your job correctly. You sit there, you make sure I don’t get killed, and you shut up.” The overly curious guard offered a shrug of his shoulders before turning his attention back on his folded newspaper.

With a heavy sigh, she turned back to the soaking dishes on the counter top before her and began to dry them off using the dish rag. After pleading with G’nort that he replace Tareth as her guard, he granted her one day of respite while he sent the recent Warlord Tournament winner on a series of interviews with the press. However, the stand-in was quickly making her wish that the request had not been granted. G’nort’s sense of humor was, once again, coming back to bite her.

Of course the question which arose was why did she wish Tareth to be replaced? Although she had expected the question from G’nort and had attempted to prepare for it, her answer had still been weak. Tareth’s manner drove her crazy. His humor was irritating. His ego grated her nerves. He asked questions which caused her stomach to turn. He put her on the spot when all she wished was to crawl under a rock. However, the uncharacteristically agitated style in which her response had been delivered had not convinced G’nort of its validity.

Her gaze once again found its way out the frosted panes of the window. She had moved far enough out of the city to gain some quiet and pure snow. For in the city, snow did not last white very long. The foot traffic and dirt soon caused any snowfall within the city gates to lose all beauty to her. However, the small bungalow house she had found just south of the city fit her fancy.

A knock on the side door interrupted her thoughts as she placed down the pan and looked expectantly towards the guard who had looked expectantly towards her. With a glare, Charlie motioned towards the door which led to the guard rising to his feet with no small show of effort. The newspaper was abandoned on the table top as he headed for the side door.

The man that was let in immediately lifted her spirits not because she looked forward to his company but because she had hired him to find the man who had run off with her life savings. He thumped his boots on the outside steps to kick off the snow before stepping indoors and shutting the door behind himself so as not to let out the warmth. Charlie stepped towards him, a smile quickly coming to her lips. “Let me take your coat. Do you have news?”

“No, no. I wasn’t planning on staying long,” he said, giving his employer an apologetic frown. “Unfortunately, I am still having trouble figuring out where Llegron’s ship took him after they departed RhyDin. After all, it was two years ago.”

Although she had allowed herself happiness at the thought of having found Ramsus, she was too cool to allow any disappointment seep through. She thanked the man and offered her reassurances that she was certain that, with time, he would be able to locate the infamous Captain Ramsus Tidewater Llegron.

Tareth’s stand-in was at least intelligent enough to see the change in his charge’s humor after the brief visit and, thus, stayed out of her way. He did, however, steal glances at the scantily clad woman who remained staring out the window for quite some time.

While the search for the captain was being conducted under the auspices of getting back the money that went to her heir – his daughter – it was much deeper than that. While Ezra Jericho had been the man she married, Ramsus Llegron had been the man that had stolen her heart. That she could care so deeply for two men whose characters were so entirely opposite was confusing to even her.

Ezra had been everything a husband should be – steady, loyal, true – and provided her the quiet private life she desired. However, she simply never loved him. She tried. There had just always been something missing, something that Ramsus had. He was exciting, interesting, funny, and dangerous. She would never be able to change him, though. He would never be the loyal good-natured husband. He would never set down roots. Not even whatever he had felt for her could entice him into it.

Yet, she still clung to the hope that he was not too far from RhyDin to receive word of her resurrection.

A sudden and instantly irritating thumping noise drew her attention to the guard who threw a small ball at her kitchen wall. It thumped against the wall again before coming back into his hands. The rhythmic thumping continued and Charlie, who was in no mood to argue with someone so ill-equipped for the task, sighed in defeat.

G’nort’s plan had worked. After this torture, Charlie welcomed the prospect of Tareth’s return in the morning.
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Charlie Nausikaa
Adventurer
Adventurer


Joined: 22 Nov 2005
Posts: 145

Location: House of Retribution in the Old Market District of RhyDin
8,740 Silver Nobles


PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2005 12:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

“I’m coming for you, murderess!” the voices howled behind her in unison.

In a panic, Charlie ran. She ran as fast as she could through the woods clad only in an oversized men’s dress shirt. The thorny underbrush struck out at her bare legs, tearing through the flesh. The pain of the bramble under her feet was ignored. Tall imposing trees passed and still she ran on with no idea where she was headed.

The voices let out a collective growl. “You think you escaped us! You can never escape us!”

They sounded closer. She gathered the nerve to look back over her shoulder but there was nothing behind her but darkness. In the momentary loss of concentration, her right foot was snagged by a thick root sticking out of the ground. Charlie was sent face first into the dirt with an anxious shriek.

They laughed at her outcry. Angrily. Self-righteously. Heartlessly. As soon as she hit the ground, she was pushing herself up. Her right elbow burned. The sleeve of the shirt had been torn and bright red blood beaded at the scrape.

“You killed us. You assassinated us. You’re nothing but a murdering slut. You’ll pay for your sins..”

The narrow path she was on forked and Charlie picked a side without thinking. Her feet slapped against the hard packed dirt. All she could focus on was escape. She could hear them, though, and they were baring down upon her.

With a yelp, she was stopped as a thorny branch had caught her sleeve. She tugged helplessly, crying out to the branch. “Let me go. Please, God. Let me go!”

The laughter picked up again. It was right on top of her. The oppressing smell of decaying flesh filled her nostrils. Escape was no longer part of her thoughts. She closed her eyes and waited for the hours of intense pain that always followed them catching her.

But there was no pain. There was only light.

Charlie blinked awake, gasping for breath. Consciousness flowed back to her. There would be no pain. It was a dream. She was no longer dead. Yet they were still there, waiting for her on the other side and teasing her in her dreams.

A burning sensation from her legs broke through her hopelessness. She threw aside the heavy white down blanket to see the blood-stained white sheets beneath. Her legs were scraped up as if she had a run in with a prickly thicket. She checked her right elbow which was still actively bleeding.

She curled up into a ball, pulling the blanket back up to her chin. At first tears slowly rolled down her cheeks but quickly the sobs followed, racking her body. For a long while she laid there in the fetal position. She would have no rest.
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Charlie Nausikaa
Adventurer
Adventurer


Joined: 22 Nov 2005
Posts: 145

Location: House of Retribution in the Old Market District of RhyDin
8,740 Silver Nobles


PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2005 10:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Charlie watched her image in the mirror in front of her silently waiting to be prepared for her first photo shoot since… returning. The Company needed updated promotional shots and Charlie was anxious to be in front of a camera again, to be in her element. Perhaps then she hoped she would finally begin to feel like she belonged in RhyDin.

Sitting in the chair waiting to be prepped, stripped of makeup, stripped of hair spray, stripped of her revealing clothing, she felt exposed to the world around her.

She was helped into in the first outfit of the day and an assistant poked and prodded her breasts into just the right spot to reveal the most of her cleavage. The stylist calmed her wild blond locks and then teased them back into a wild, sultry state adding a can full of hair spray to keep in place what her hair did naturally anyway. Finally, the makeup artist coated her naturally thick eyelashes with an abundance of mascara and brushed her eyelids with enough eye shadow to make them pop.

Finally, she was complete and left alone until the set was ready.

Still she did not feel like the Charlie Jericho of three years ago. The world had moved on without her. The Crew had forgotten about her before her corpse had grown cold and, while Nausikaa was waging a small war over her death, it was not against anyone who caused her death and they certainly would not be happy to see her again. Tareth had been pretty clear that, though he’d resume as Charlie’s bodyguard, he would keep himself professionally distanced. Ramsus had disappeared. Three years had gone by but one thing remained the same. G’nort was still the only man in her life that she could rely on. However, his life too had become more complicated.

“Charlie Girl,” a warm voice broke through her thoughts.

Her dull green eyes spun in the direction of the voice and a shaky smile soon spread as she came face-to-face with a tall balding man in a dark suit. “Hey, Baxter.”

He tsked his tongue against the roof of his mouth as he pulled up a chair next to her. “Come back from the dead and you can’t even let your old manager know?”

A tight humorless laugh was forced up. An “I’m sorry,” was all that she could muster.

“It’s alright, it’s alright,” he assured. “Looks like you could use a little pick me up.” He lifted his suit jacket from his breast, slipping a hand into an inner pocket.

Charlie arched a thin brow as her gaze slipped towards him. “I’m sober.”

Baxter let out a hearty laugh. “Yeah, right. Don’t have any of that rich coke that you like but I’ve got a couple pills to tide you over.” He reached out for her wrist, turning her hand over to put a couple pills in her palm.

Charlie clenched her fist around the pills as Baxter turned his back to reach for a bottle of water sitting on the vanity. He held it out to her as she continued to stare at her closed fist. “Don’t worry, Charlie Girl. Baxter’s back to take care of you.”

Her gaze rested on him for a long moment before she popped the pills into her mouth and snagged the bottle of water. As quickly as possible to avoid talking herself out of it, she swallowed them down with a long gulp of water.

Baxter gave a friendly smile and patted her shoulder. “That’s a girl. Now let me go make sure this photographer knows what he’s doing,” he said huffily as he headed off towards the set and, without even a word regarding the issue, Baxter had rehired himself.

Charlie allowed herself to sink down a bit in her chair, heaving a heavy sigh and attempting to pass her last few sober moments quickly. Slowly but surely the weight of the world lifted from her shoulders and when Baxter alerted her that they were ready for her, she had very nearly forgotten the past three years had even happened.
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Charlie Nausikaa
Adventurer
Adventurer


Joined: 22 Nov 2005
Posts: 145

Location: House of Retribution in the Old Market District of RhyDin
8,740 Silver Nobles


PostPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2005 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pounding hooves broke the quiet morning air as six horses brought their riders towards their intended destination. Their leader, a small woman with her blonde hair tied back at the nape of her neck, positioned her reigns in one hand before throwing her leg over her horse and sliding off the sixteen hand beast. The reigns were handed over to the member of her personal elite guard who had picked the short straw. He would have to wait outside and keep watch while the rest entered the small bungalow-style house.

While pulling off her riding gloves, their leader allowed a moment to scan the area. The cozy house sat nestled into a heavy-wooded area. A thin trail of smoke billowed from the chimney. The property was very much the type that Charlotte had preferred – snug and private. A heavy sigh escaped the woman’s lips as her team assembled at the door and she moved to follow. She was beginning to believe she would not like what was behind that door. She was beginning to believe that Charlotte Ann Jericho really had made a trip back from the dead.

“Let’s get this done,” she stated quietly to the men surrounding her. The sound of cracking and crashing wood soon met her ears as the door was brought down. The men then began filing into the house with their hands lingering near the hilts of their weapons. Their leader quietly followed, anxious to get her first look at the inside.

Charlie was a meticulous house keeper unless she was on drugs. The house was beginning to show signs of a downward decline. There were clothes strewn on backs of chairs and on the floor but the putrid smell of rotten food had not settled in. There was little doubt that Charlie had found her way back to the same transgressions that had led her down the path to her death. The men split off into different sides of the house to check for occupants.

“Found her,” came a voice from the back bedroom. The leader spun on her heels and elongated her strides to bring her towards the back bedroom.

Charlie Jericho was lying horizontally face down on a bed of rumpled sheets. Her legs hung off one end and her wild locks of blonde hair covered her face. Despite the noise of a small army entering her room, she had not stirred. The leader’s gaze found the man closest to the in prone body. “Is she alive?”

The man pulled a glove off and pushed aside enough hair to slip two fingers against the neck of the motionless woman. After a silent moment searching for a heart beat, he gave a single nod in response.

The leader stepped forward to the bed and grabbed a handful of the woman’s sandy blonde locks, lifting her head off of the bed by her hair. Every eye in the room was on the woman’s face. Behind the mass of hair, Charlie Jericho finally showed signs of life by giving a disgruntled moan.

“It’s a fake,” their leader said sternly after taking a glance at the woman’s face. The men were not the types to question her orders so their demeanor grew cold. “Let’s get this over with.” With a surprising amount of force for such a petite woman, the leader tightened her grip on the fistful of hair and dragged the semi-conscious drug addict to the floor by it.

Charlie gave out a pained cry and her green eyes snapped open. Her heart came to an abrupt stop as she saw the cold gaze of Arane Nausikaa Ganderfald staring back down at her.
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Charlie Nausikaa
Adventurer
Adventurer


Joined: 22 Nov 2005
Posts: 145

Location: House of Retribution in the Old Market District of RhyDin
8,740 Silver Nobles


PostPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2005 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Almost immediately upon hitting the ground, a heavy men’s boot connected with Charlie’s gut. Her breath was forcefully shoved from her lungs as she instinctively tucked her body into the fetal position. Terror failed to allow any reasonable thought to enter her mind.

The kicks came from all directions and in increasing rapidity. The terror was soon replaced with hopelessness. Along with bone-searing pain, it flooded past the terror, sobering her drugged mind. Nausikaa was here to kill her and it wasn’t going to be an easy death.

Charlie lost count of the blows. Her mind slipped from the moment as consciousness became a much too painful place for her mind to linger. The assault slowed and finally was drawn to a halt as the other female in the room held up a hand and silently dismissed the men with a wave. There was silence as they filed out.

Arane knelt down beside Charlie’s battered body, brushing away a lock of her hair away from her bloodied forehead. “I know you are not a fake,” she quietly spoke with motherly calm.

Charlie forced her eyes open at that, fighting off the darkness to take a look at Arane’s face. Her cool blue eyes met Charlie’s troubled gaze. Despite an intense desire to scream at the woman, Charlie simply could not force her voice to work. The attempt merely left her coughing in agony.

“Shh, shh,” Arane quieted the woman, patting her shoulder gently. “You will probably die here tonight of your injuries. However, if by some feat of your spectacular will, you manage to survive, leave RhyDin. This is your first and only warning. You are a distraction to my men. They believe you dead and buried. You are a fake in the eyes of Nausikaa and if you continue to use the name of Charlie Jericho, you will be hunted and killed.”

Her former employer reached down, wiping off blood from beneath Charlie’s bottom lip. Arane offered a sad smile. “It is too bad that things worked out this way. I should have liked to know what the after life was like.” Arane raised from her crouch to her full height, pulling her riding gloves back on over her hands.

As she was nearly out the bedroom door, Charlie finally found her voice. “You will rot in hell,” she croaked out angrily towards the door.

Arane came to a sudden stop and glanced over her shoulder at Charlie. Her features were twisted in curiosity as if the idea of going to hell for her sins had never occurred to her. “Then heaven help Satan,” Arane replied to Charlie after a long moment’s thought over the matter.

“Merry Christmas, Charlotte Nausikaa.”

The door closed tightly behind Arane. Tears stung Charlie’s cheeks. Pain was yanking on every nerve ending of her body. She forced her arms to move, attempting to drag her body towards the door. The effort seemed to great. Her body seemed to beg for a rest. Finally, tired of the fight, her mind gave it up and allowed the darkness to swallow her up.
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Charlie Nausikaa
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Adventurer


Joined: 22 Nov 2005
Posts: 145

Location: House of Retribution in the Old Market District of RhyDin
8,740 Silver Nobles


PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2005 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

“Oh my God, Charlie,” a desperate voice broke through the darkness. “Charlie, are you alright?” She felt a hand rest on her shoulder.

Charlie struggled to open her eyes and upon succeeding narrowed them in on the face of the person crouched down beside her. The features were sharp and aristocratic. Blonde curly hair fell around her shoulders but what caught her attention were the cool shade of blue eyes. Arane. It was Arane.

“I’m going to take you with me,” Charlie growled as she sluggishly reached for her foe’s throat.

The other woman gave a yelp and fell backwards out of Charlie’s reach. The exertion sent Charlie into a coughing fit. Each cough caused her body new pain.

“Charlie, it– it’s me. Adana.” There was fear in the voice and for the first time Adana wondered what she had brought back from the dead.

The statement drove away her pain for a moment and with a determined expression Charlie lifted her head to get a good look at the girl. The gangly eleven year old that she had known prior to her death had blossomed into a young teenager. The resemblance between mother and daughter was striking. Yet, now that Charlie looked carefully, she could see the gentleness and youthful hope in Adana’s features that years of violence had erased from Arane’s.

“Adana.... how... why are you here?” Charlie croaked.

Adana paused, chewing on her bottom lip nervously. Feeling brave enough to approach Charlie, she scooted back next to her and gently rubbed Charlie’s shoulder. “I’ve been trying to get away from my guards so I could come see you. There was some kind of commotion tonight and I was able to finally get away.”

Charlie began testing her muscles and bones to see which would respond to her commands. Most seemed to respond but the scorching pain discouraged action. With some effort and a grunt of pain, she managed to right herself into a sitting position, resting her back against the bed. After giving herself a long moment to catch her breath, her green eyes turned back on Adana. “Your mother told you I was back?”

Adana knew Charlie well enough to not help unless asked. She sat back on the floor, quietly watching the scene and when asked the question, she took a long moment to respond. From Charlie’s question, Adana could gather that her mother knew Charlie was alive and, having that knowledge, could easily guess who had hurt her.

“No. I knew because I am the one who had you brought back,” Adana finally replied.

Charlie stared blankly at her for a long moment. Questions ran through her mind. How? Why? She was not sure if she should be angry with the girl or thankful to her. However, all of those were pushed aside when Charlie realized just the predicament they were both in. If Nausikaa caught the two of them here together, Charlie’s life would be quickly ended and Adana would have a lot of explaining to do.

“We’ll talk about this later. We’ve got to get out of here. Help me up,” Charlie stated.

Adana quickly hopped to her feet and helped support some of Charlie’s weight. Silently the two slipped out of the house and traveled deeper into the woods. Adana was curious as to where Charlie was taking them but knew her companion was in no mood to speak at the moment. Pain, confusion, and exhaustion were all Charlie could consider.

As they slipped through the mist, Charlie began to lean more and more heavily on Adana. The young woman did not complain and when she was sure that both of their bodies were going to give out, they came upon a small cabin.

As they reached the door and Charlie motioned with a bloodied hand for Adana to give a knock. With a grunt Adana shifted her weight enough to free up a hand, rapping hard on the door. A towering man answered the door. His surprised questioning look leapt from the young girl to Charlie. Recognition registered on his face as he saw Charlie and concern for her condition soon followed.

Charlie gave a pained half-smile to the man, finding her voice and dry sense of humor all at once. “Merry Christmas, Kheld. Thought I’d give you another shot at saving me.”
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