Hello, fine peoples!
I've had a specific series in my head since I was very young. I've tried writing it out on multiple occasions, but lots of things often happened that necessitated starting over. And over.
In any case, I'm not probably not gonna post individual short stories on here nor write and post my full novel on here, but I want to be able to write down critical bits and pieces of that series whenever I get around to writing more of it.
I'm not expecting readers, but if you have any interest in the story at all (questions, critiques, wanna know a quick plot synopsis, etc.), feel free to post or PM me.
Only real thing to note:
SPP = "Super-Powered Person". Any sentient being (or any being given sentience by the SPP transformation process) is a "person" whether or not they're human. Not called "superhero/villain" because both are terms that is a label given to an individual by others rather than a generic identification of what one is. There's also no real consensus on who constitutes a "hero" or "villain", and it's ultimately a pointless task that would a) divide the SPP's power base as a whole (as they are already a super-minority in terms of total universal population), and b) demean any individual labeled "villain" which could (and historically has) lead to many problems.
All the characters the story follows are SPPs.
Ilmeni woke up again. She flipped the pillow over and tried to get comfortable under the flaxen blanket. Ultimately realizing it was a losing battle, she decided to turn her attention toward a task that proved less pyrrhic: remembering the dream that had roused her in the first place.
She could remember the green sky. A color of a lightning flash. Or was it an endless sea? In any case, the color was vivid. The world was… she could remember her father’s voice talking about the shape of the universe, a circle, a cycle, and the green expanse around her began to fray and collapse in on itself. Ilmeni could then see a third person view of herself, floating as the world curled in around her. An embryonic embrace. She could remember feeling anxious, but not about what was happening. It was as though there was a looming threat, something much more than mere destruction. Her body turned toward her and Ilmeni looked into her own eyes and…
She turned toward Volty. He sounded groggy, he must have just awoken from her movement. She twisted to face his back and touched her forehead to his hair. It was hot. She could smell his sweat in the closed quarters.
Volty stopped shifting and Ilmeni could feel the energy calming. Soon, he was drawing slow rhythmic breaths.
It was too hot in here. Ilmeni floated up to make as little a disturbance on the bed as possible and carefully deposited the blanket onto the mattress. She touched down on the side of the bed, looked at Volty, glanced at the clock, and tiptoed out of the room. The long Jiyan night was only half over, but she didn’t feel sleepy anymore.
How often had her dreams been a source of comfort for her? She padded to the apartment’s window and opened it. The night was cool and there was a light mist, but it wasn’t unbearably cold. She opened the window wider and slipped out, pulling the window closed behind her.
The window opened to a back alley which was fine. Easier to avoid unwanted questions. Ilmeni flew up, shooting quickly past a dozen floors before launching out and above most of the dingy buildings of the scrubland outside the city. The mist felt nice on her bare skin and she smiled. The closed-in sensation she had been feeling since waking up dripped away from her as she flew up and up…
She could just fly away. Leave everything behind, again. Start life anew. Forget her family, forget her past, forget her impossible ambitions, forget…
A flash of lightning green in the distance blinked in Ilmeni’s peripheral and the entrapped feeling drenched her again. How often had her dreams been a source of knowledge?
Ilmeni closed her eyes and took a deep breath, trying to remember the feelings the dream had evoked. She opened her eyes and she could feel the tug of her power. She flew unconsciously toward the source, all enjoyment of the moment now replaced with a certain dread. She had always been able to find anything she wanted to find. Her dreams had led her to the best person to be able to help her achieve her goal. Would her dreams truly show her the source of her greatest fears? Was that even possible?
Ilmeni flew towards the city. She had wanted to live here because it embodied her desires, an SPP populace that worked with itself and non-SPPs to create a beautiful whole, a crown jewel of a bygone era. It always reminded her of her father’s ornate gemstone inlays within a solid piece of jewelry. Her eyes wandered to the ring on her outstretched right hand. It had no inlay or any special design on its outside, but the inside was crafted with a design unique to her family.
No, she must be interpreting things incorrectly.
The buildings were growing higher, and even at this midnight hour there was an enormous amount of air traffic. Ilmeni could even see a few lone SPPs flying far below her. Ilmeni flew up ever higher, thanking the creators that SPPs had no trouble breathing in space. She now was above the artificial mist cover and she began to shiver, the moisture on her body freezing in the cold night. She was now well over most of the buildings, but there were still several structures that reached up to her height. These monstrous towers could each contain a city’s worth of people. Her Triangulation seemed to be pulling her toward the fourth tallest of these, the only one specifically designed for the purpose of profession rather than residence.
Ilmeni sighed, but she had to smile at the irony. Her greatest fear appeared to be within the building that she had always claimed drove her crazy. The building that the SPP employees jokingly referred to as “the hellhole”. Ilmeni hovered in place as she looked at the unaesthetic edifice. Under normal circumstances, she wouldn’t really have many qualms about poking around a little bit and seeing where her Triangulation led her, but the entire building was owned by the regional government. The security - especially security against SPPs - was impossible to bypass. She probably had access, but she needed her card. Besides, it probably wouldn’t do to go in the nude.
Ilmeni turned back. The night was long and she was in no hurry. Her Triangulation scratched at the back of her mind, still tugging her toward the hellhole, but she suppressed it. She’d be able to dig it back up when she needed to. What was in the hellhole that could ruin her dreams and desires - besides the bureaucratic monotony that made her want to end it all? Was the government purposefully creating the divisions she hoped to ease? Would she be able to change anything from the inside where she was? Ilmeni shivered as her thoughts ran back to the well-trodden path of self-doubt. Was power truly necessary for unity? Volty was strong, yes, but was it really just his strength that had brought those armies together? No, the generals, they saw, I saw something else. He wasn’t nearly as strong then and yet he was still mobilizing/unifying (?).
Ilmeni debated with herself all the way back to her apartment. While her body was still feeling restless, her dread had subsided somewhat and her mental sparring had left her exhausted. As she flew down, a Jiyan waved to her. Ilmeni waved back and smiled.
Ilmeni landed back in the alley and reopened the window. She slipped in and latched the window shut behind her. She headed to the bathroom and turned on the full body drier. She lay down in it and let out a contented sigh. The mist had melted, but she still felt frigid.
She’d been away from work for long enough. Tomorrow she would have to get back to work and see exactly what her dream seemed to be warning her.
She heard a knocking sound on the closed drier and Ilmeni’s eyes shot open. Volty was smiling and Ilmeni could see a bright blue sky outside the small bathroom window. She quickly pressed a button and opened the drier.
“Was the blanket really that bad?” Volty said.
Ilmeni laughed and rubbed her eyes. “Sorry, something was on my mind and I went out for a bit. Must’ve fallen asleep.”
“Are you ok now?”
Ilmeni nodded and stretched her arms and legs while sitting on the drier. “Yes. I had a... dream. You know, one of those ones, but it wasn’t a good one.”
Volty twitched. “Ah.” His shoulders slumped a bit and his eyes moved away from Ilmeni.
“No, it’s nothing.” he said and he offered Ilmeni his hand to pull her to her feet.
Ilmeni got up and slipped past Volty, brushing bare shoulders with him and feeling a small jolt of power from him. She moved into the bedroom and got dressed, Triangulating her ID and slipping it into a back pocket. She glanced at the door where Volty was watching her. “What?” she asked again.
“You’re going to work?” Volty asked.
“Aww come on, I asked my question first.” Ilmeni said as she pulled on her second shoe.
Volty snorted, “Yeah, I dunno. Just a lot of things running through my head.” He paused. “I guess I just don’t like staying cooped up here, that’s all.”
Ilmeni smiled and gave him a kiss as she slipped past him. “Trust me, things should blow over soon. We’ll be free.”
“It just feels like forever,” he said.
Ilmeni grabbed a breaded pastry from a container next to the fridge and grabbed the front door’s knob. She looked back at Volty who’d put on some clothes in the interval of time since she’d reached the door. She wanted to say something, but she’d already turned on her Triangulation and it was buzzing toward the hellhole. She couldn’t focus.
“Don’t worry about it.” Volty said. “You don’t have to say anything. Just go.”
Ilmeni nodded, put the pastry in her mouth and waved as she closed the door behind her. Ilmeni traced her nighttime flight path, smiling in the warm light. Many other SPPs flew below her, some in pairs yelling their conversation over the speed of their flight.