• Published 17th Mar 2018
  • 1,095 Views, 19 Comments

Aftermath - Rose Quill

Sirens are apex predators. But when they lose for the first time, they don’t know what to do.

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Pain. All I could focus on was the pain. My hunger had always hit me harder than my sisters, never really knew why. But beyond the haze of pain and shock I watched as Adagio slumped against the wall, tears flooding down her face.

I had never seen her cry before. No matter what we went through, she always had a plan and always seemed confident, but now…

I felt even more afraid seeing the hopelessness in her face. My stomach was roiling from my anxiousness and I turned to the side, retching. I dimly heard Sonata say something but all I could hear was the rush of my panicked heartbeat.

Adagio was the leader. I may have made moves to take over on the occasion, but deep down I knew that she had the motivation and natural talent for taking charge. But if even she was saying it was hopeless, then what chance did we have? Feeding had been hard enough with the gems, and they made it easier in this world with such low ambient magic.

I looked back at the lights of the stage, and immediately started back towards them, still hunched over somewhat from the twisting feeling in my gut.

“Ari?” I heard Sonata whimper. “Where are you going?”

“To collect what shards I can find,” I rasped. “Maybe there’s enough residual enchantment that we at least won’t starve.”

Adagio swiped her tears away roughly. “Don’t do it now,” she whispered. “They’re still playing down there, can’t you hear them?”

I stopped, trying to hear through the pulse in my ears. Dimly, I heard a guitar strike a few notes hard. I hung my head and cursed. Mentally, I berated myself for being so desperate. I pressed a hand against my chest as a hollowness began to spread now that my panic was subsiding. A throbbing, clawing numbness that threatened to subsume me.

I sank to my knees, trying to draw on the rage that had so often flowed through me to beat the numbness aside. I slammed my fist against the pavement, and the pain actually driving it away momentarily. I felt the sting of tears in my eyes but I forced them back. One of us had to stay strong, keep it together.

But as I looked at my sisters again, I knew it wasn’t going to be me. Not this time.