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Lakewood Times

Lakewood Times

    “Gem Shell” by Zach Vardaris

    “Welcome, friend.” Welcome indeed. It’s so lonely in here. This crystal prison is a nightmare. A dozen centuries, at least, it’s been here, and it’s housing for about five. And, recently, more obstacles. A ‘pretty’ glass case, and a truly ugly cavern. Why does this happen to the quiet intellectuals? Never any boisterous entities bound like this…

    “I have you now!” the figure says. He’s roughly one-and-a-third meters tall, and wearing a heavy brown cloak. He looked like the captor’s minion, and sounded like him…

    But when he stepped into the light of the prison, it’s obvious that he is no human. He has three taloned claws on each foot, three fingers and a thumb on each hand– each with it’s own talon– and, his pale lemon colored beak. He was arresting. Slightly grotesque, but overwhelmingly beautiful. A powerful being’s dream would be to make such a sleek and effective creature, To get this far, to blend in with mammals, to mime their voice… will he break the prison?

    His eyes search over the prison, and… seem to… no. It’s too much to hope. But if he can see through it…

    A faint sound at the other end of the clay cavern stole the beautiful bird man away,  Two others showed up to eat up his time– and patience, from his body language– and he struck a light to signify himself as a beacon of hope. Is the end of this prison in sight?

    The now-trio came over to it, looking at the shell.

    The three use hand gestures and stern looks to communicate. Is the prison so old that language is obsolete? Will the power even… ?

    Oh… they… are they… the tall one is lifting the case… the outer perimeter… gone!

    The prison itself, lifted by the bird man… savior!

    Oh, what’s the metal fool doing? That prison looks stupid. It has bells on it! Bells…

    Oh, no… the jingle will set off the trap… has set off the trap…

    Savior made a funny little sound, like a musical instrument, and they are off, prison in tow.

    At the exit of the now-sodden cavern, they remove their muddied clothes. Savior doesn’t let the prison out of his sight; as he should, seeing as it imprisoned something as powerful as it did…

    Within minutes, they are out of the cave’s home, and into a giant basket. Savior pries the prison out of it’s casing… freedom is so close! He’s looking into it, into the depths of the prison.

    Into the prison Izprimix.

    His lackluster friends must work for the captor, because they cry out at the impending liberation. With only a little help, Savior is able to restrain his former friends. Then, he turns to his helpful loot. He stares deeply, his beady black eyes full of wonderment and curiosity, then… he croaks. A sad little noise… can he not…?

    Why wasn’t it obvious?! The noises he made, the different voices, the gestures… Savior doesn’t have his own voice! Well, lucky for him, he has the prison of the god who can help him.

    His desire, sorrow, and pent up frustration with humanity is enough to crack the prison, freeing Izprimix at last! First order of business, destroying the captor’s minions. Easy! A beam of light, and their screams of anguish fizzle out to gurgles of death, and those voices are stored in the glowing marble.

    These voices will make a fine gift for Savior… a parting gift, from the dying god…


    The gift bestowed, all that’s left to wonder, does Savior have a goal? How long will his mortal body last? No doubt afterlife left no room for a banished god. So, no home left, what better one than Savior?

    As the marble merged with Savior’s throat, I became We, and Clacks became Izprimix, the God of Expression. Joyous songs in stolen voices radiated out from the silly floating basket.

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