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Fading Until

You Can't Tell

Anymore

By Falcon, for Shine's contest.

****Note: The different colored pieces are Seawater in the present, normal text is her in the past. The present parts connect, so you may have to reread all of that text together to get the full meaning. It's worth it, trust me. :)****

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I...LOVE IT!!! :D Please continue and keep continuing! also my fave part is the fact that her worst part is the shortest sorta part of her life..sleep. Again, please continue! Thanks! --Shadows Are Dark Mirrors OfYourself 05:01, February 14, 2014 (UTC

Love it please continue Rainfury 

It's a great story so far :) I love the way Seawater is unstable and she can't seem to get ahold of herself. It's a creative idea! Here comes the sun, Here comes the rain, Standing in the eye of the hurricane 03:12, April 18, 2014 (UTC)

Prologue

I wasn't always me.

The real me.

I have met cats who have said that that past me was just the real me, that spiritless lump of fur. They have said that my attitude was just wrong, that my moping was wrong.

No... it is them that are wrong, not me.

I harbor no spite as I say these words.

This is a confession, and it is a relief to release it from inside me, where it was getting awfully heavy sitting in the bottom of my soul.

I am not taking anymore blame, or passing it on.

No...no longer.


Chapter 1

Everyone has only one thing in the world.

One thing that no one can take away.

One thing that is not yours to give.

Mine was my thoughts.

Free-widescreen-wallpaper-ocean-cliff-nature-picture-cliff-hd-wallpaper








The world seems to swirl beneath my paws as I gaze at the azure surface beneath me.

It has always captivated me, those dancing froths of white tipping the waves that lap casually at the beach shore. And the way that that kind of serene water can turn volatile with the flip of one second.

The ocean is not something to fool with. It can start dredging up seaweed and tossing it carelessly onto a beach with just a flip of its mind.

That seaweed has been betrayed by the ocean. Cast out of the only element it is comfortable in, water. Cast into the stifling air, where it has never been before.

This dismal scene is a metaphor of my life. Maybe it is not healthy to be here, if this place makes such sad thoughts out of my mind. But it is certainly cheerier for me than back with my patrol.

There, chants of 'Seawater, Seawater, loner of the Cla-an! No fri-e-ends, no fa-mily! So ugly gray our eyes hurt! I don't know why the leader won't ba-an her!' await me. The cats of my Clan think they are so clever to be able to rhyme, and hurt someone.

Really, hurting is not a skill. Just mindless taunting. All you do is stick a cat's flaws into a sentence, and laugh out loud.

Comforting is a real skill, one no one in my Clan possesses. You actually have to know the cat you are talking to, and when to back off. I wish I had once been comforted. It sounds like a wonderful thing. StarClan knows I needed it. That is, StarClan would know if they were really helpful, and not just some random ancestors that talk to "prophecized" cats, and not those who really need help.

I'm wandering off again. Sighing, I get up from my safe spot. I give it one more look as I turn and start to walk away, smiling at the beautiful ocean cliff. It is as much happiness as I will get in this world.

Still smiling softly, I walk back into the forest. I am on a chattering -uh, I mean hunting- patrol, so I may as well do something 'productive' for the Clan.

I pull myself across the ground, weaving in between the thick foliage that blocks my path. Scenting the air, I notice a squirrel, the same gray as me.

I really should have been born a squirrel. I would have fit in in at least one way. But then again, apparently it was my character that cast me out of the group. Sigh.

Really regretting killing the poor, innocent squirrel that is just looking for food, I anyway jump and catch it with a painless nip to the neck.

Noticing the super fatness of the squirrel, I decide that that is enough hunting for the Clan, and that I have met my quota for this hunting patrol.

You heard me right. I have a quota for each hunting patrol, or else I am yelled at for slacking off. No one ever said I have to hunt the entire time, however, so I milk it, and sit at my cliff.

Plan:

1.Get on a patrol and get out of the way of cats.

2.Sit at cliff.

3. Hunting is easy, so hunt a piece of prey at the last minute.

4. Find the patrol, and get taunted, which sucks.

Yes, patrols are supposed to work and stay together, but there is an 'exception' for me. I hunt alone. It is allowed, apparently. They make it look like they are doing me a favor by allowing me. Actually, it's not like I have a choice.

Once, I tried to go with the patrol and make some friends, but they yelled at me so loud my ears fell off. They didn't even stop their senseless hollering when I left, ears flat, resigned to hunt alone.

Muttering to myself, I eventually found the stench of OceanClan and followed it.

The trail included several sets of paw prints, and a lot of broken twigs, so I guessed it was probably the right one.

OceanClan is so easy to track and attack, I'm surprised we haven't been annihilated yet. Then again, we don't have any enemy Clans nearby.

Or foxes.

Or dogs.

Or two-legs.

Or hawks.

You get the picture-ultimate safety, except from each other. You probably also figured out that I am not the most loyal of cats.

I guess being isolated with a bunch of clanmates on a little deserted island has its perks.

Anyway, I finally come across some more signs of my patrol.

Ah-ha! I can see flashes of pelt color through the brambles.

Silently, I join the back of the patrol, who are headed back to OceanClan camp. Maybe if I don't make any noise, they won't notice me, and I can escape into my thoughts again.

I shouldn't have bothered. I barely have the time to put one paw in front of another, before I am met by a barrage of comments. Actually, make that insults.

"Hey Seawater," taunts Rockfall, "is all you could catch a little squirrel? How come you aren't an apprentice then? Awwwww, Seawater needs hunting lessons!"

He tosses the scrawny rabbit he has in his mouth onto the back of one of his cronies, Dewdrop, to free up his mouth to talk to me. 

Dewdrop staggers under the weight, but ever loyal, calls out, "Yeah, Seakit! And if you have to be a warrior, why couldn't you be called Uglypelt? I can't believe Icestar didn't name you Deadbrain or Muteface at your warrior ceremony! What was it, a week ago?"

The rest of the patrol breaks into sniggers.

I'm not going to answer, given I still have my squirrel and that would just give them more amusement. This will never end anyway.

Oh well. They can't hurt me.

One Clan's opinions can't hurt me.

And this is only 5 cats.

Yet, logic won't stop a little part of my mind, the little part that knows that the only way to stop them is to tell them. But the rest of me knows that I can't.

Perhaps I would be more truthful to myself by admitting that I just won't. And maybe just a little of that is out of fear.

Chapter 2

Something that is so exclusive to you can be cruel.

It can warp.

From your special thing, to what stops you from moving.

It can become why you can't keep going.

My thoughts become nightmares.

But they are not nightmares.

They are events that have really happened, that I can't forget.

Because of my thoughts turned nightmares.

Smoke.

Darkness.










Nightmares wrack my dreams through the night, like usual.

I never liked the warriors' den. Or the apprentices' den for that matter. They are much too cramped, and in the presence of all the other cats.

Last, but most importantly, it is where we all go to sleep.

Where my torture begins.

That is why I never try to go to sleep.

That is why I try to stay awake.

Long after the shuffling of my Clan mates has subsided, I lay awake.

I am used to sleeping short hours, and staying awake long ones.

But even I can't stay awake for forever.

I don't even need to try tonight.

A cloud is starting to cover the moon.

The light is turning foggy, and I can see much less of it.

My pupils widen until they take up most of my face.

I have to get as much of that light as possible.

I start to hyperventilate into my tail.

It's not much comfort, but at least it is something.

The light has fully dissipated.

And with it, my last hope.

There is no way to escape the darkness tonight.

I curl tighter into myself, on impulse.

Curling in does not warm me at all.

It makes me colder.

I am not sure if that is because of the inky blackness descending, or because I am soaked to the bone in my own sweat.

It is the darkness, isn't it?

I can feel it grasping the very edges of the den, then swirling in on me.

Just me.

I alone attract this darkness.

All of it concentrates around me, closing in.

Like a curtain of water, blocking out what I need to survive.

It makes the air so heavy to breathe.

Until I can breathe it no longer.

I try to hold my breath.

Swallowing the darkness is like swallowing poison.

I can't let it get to my thoughts, my emotions, my soul.

I can't let it get to my organs, where it will burn me until I am forced to scream.

But I have to breathe.

The air is rank, with the scent of fear and death. Sour, and tainted, so that I choke on it.

But it is not something I can spit out.

It is already inside me.

I no longer need to breathe.

That wisp of darkness that has tortured its way inside me will sustain my life.

Only sustain my life to torture me more.

I don't know what it wants, just that it comes every night.

Every night it varies in potency.

This night is one of the lightest.

It only reaches inside of my mouth.

Grasping for my throat with tendrils of fire.

It can't be over quick.

Slowly, cruelly, as if it does this is nothing remarkable, the wisps burn my throat.

They take away the life it has, charring and scarring it.

You have no idea how it feels to burn from the inside out.

To not be able to see it, but feel it.

To be able to visualize the melted black drops fall onto your tongue.

I want to put my paw inside my throat, claw the darkness out of it before it can go farther.

But I don't even try.

I know that I cannot move.

I know from the times I have done this before.

I have done this every night of my life.

I have had this dream every night.

It is the one that blurs the line between my dream world and the real one.

The one that pulls my into the real nightmares.

Except they aren't really nightmares.

They are memories.

They are shadows of events that I have experienced.

The events that I can never forget.

The events that have scarred me the most.

I know only one thing.

Tonight has only just begun.

Chapter 3

Your thing can absorb you.

In its good form, or its bad.

It is usually safe when you have control.

After all, it is a gift.

But it has its costs.

And it becomes the curse of your life.

The bringer of your death.

What warps you into shadows.

You are fooling with fire.

When you don't have control.

When things get out of control

When things get out of control.








Those nightmares don't leave me a mouse tail of room to wriggle in.

No escape.

And they aren't satisfied with just that.

They know me. Exactly. Precisely. They know what gets me.

They know what is cruelest.

And they exploit it every night, over and over.

And I can't get used to it.

Every night it knows me more.

Every night it gets worse.

Every night I get more scared that it knows so much, it is me.

The most favorite two tricks it has is to let me get scared like this, and feel like it is over.

Then it pounces when I can't take it.

The other thing they do is do the same thing every night.

It is agonizing to know exactly what is going to happen, but not be able to change it.

Like dying that many times.

Feeling the same pain, knowing the same moves of your enemy.

But being rooted to the ground, each and every time.

Leaving you unable to correct the biggest mistake of your life, only watch it happen over and over.

Yet, every time the shock is the same.

The horror is the same.

The will for life is the same.

The thoughts are identical.

But tonight, it won't happen again.

I've done this too many times to fall for it again.

But I do anyway.

There is no way to resist.

My break is over.

The sweet sensation of no pain gripping my body will extend no longer.

I try to keep it for as long as I can.

But that is just lending a hand in my own torture.

The more I hold on, the more it will hurt to let it go.

And the more the darkness can do.

I have learned to let it go fast.

But I can't resist a last look back at the peace.

When that is over, it is time.

I tear my gaze away.

These seconds are precious.

It is my last chance to gather strong will, before I'm taken, completely against my will.

Taken to the last place I ever want to find myself at again.

But there is no way to resist.

There is no one to go with.

There is no way to avoid it.

Trust me, I've tried.

I do the last thing I can do.

It is the one thing I know that hinders the darkness even a little.

I balk in place.

It's a petty attempt, but at least it hasn't broken my will completely already.

Then again, it is impossible to break a will that is already non-existent.

How long until my will is the will that is gone forever?

I still want to survive, as much as I did the first day the darkness came to me.

But I feel tired, more so every night.

Too tired to fight, even with as little force as I could muster before.

That is my last thought of the night.

My mind goes blank.

A dark, blank canvas.

So just not there it is scary.

It is like I can't even connect to my own mind anymore.

But that is just the affect of the dark vortex.

The dark vortex is the last tool the darkness needs against me.

You take away my thoughts, you take away me.

Yet, it is certainly not the last tool the darkness has.

I don't want to know what is worse than this.

What is a worse way of being pulled into your old memories turned nightmares?

Worse than being sucked down in never ending circles?

That is what the dark vortex is.

Or at least what I think it is.

A whirlpool of the worst pieces of your life.

A compilation of the dustiest memories in your brain.

No, not those sweet kit-sy ones, of your mother and siblings.

The ones that are the ones you wish you could forget.

But you can't, because they are engraved into your brain.

The vortex is literally just memories.

Memories converted against you, turned into searing whips of fire.

Whips of fire that are relentless in their attack.

Damaging you by making you relive the worst parts of the worst memories of the worst days of your life.

The vortex is a spinning top of black fire lit in a dim, malicious red glow.

Each of the wisps making it up is a memory.

Each memory is made of fire.

Fire that burns you internally.

But, remember how I said that that is the worst way, at least that I know of and can imagine, to be pulled into your old memories turned nightmares was the vortex?

That also means that it is only the passageway, the thing pulling me in.

It has fun fooling with me on the way to the destination, sure.

But it is only the deliveryman.

It taunts you with the little, painful parts of your life.

But it gives only a peak.

A dangerous, hurtful peak, yes.

Yet it is not showing you the deepest, darkest secrets.

The vortex delivers you, and teases you along the way.

It delivers you to its leader.

The deepest, darkest secrets of my life are saved for the supreme leader.


Chapter 4

Sometimes, it appears that your path is one no one has taken before.

But really, they have.

Don't misread it.

They still can't help you.

Their path is not the exact same.

But they do exist.

Some have had your thing before you.

Yet, if you are thinking this, your thing is much worse in its malicious from than theirs.

And there is only one way to stop it.

One that I don't know of.

Dark vortex by Soterios








Legs trembling, eyes wide, I am finally dropped.

My pelt is even sweatier somehow, after the dark vortex is done with me.

It (thankfully) is a funnel, and has two ends.

The one the dark tendrils bring me into, and the one the vortex lets me out of.

After dropping out, I don't even bother looking intimidating.

No need to encourage the supreme leader to laugh.

It gets enough entertainment already.

Plus, maybe I don't try because I physically can't.

It's hard to fluff your fur out when you are shaking like a volcano about to blow its top you know.

I only have another few seconds, a minute tops, to gather myself.

Then, the leader will come.

And my pain will return, only excruciating this time.

May as well look around, and see what is in store for me first tonight.

Yes, first.

I don't really have a accurate time sense in this place, but I've learned to guess.

It is my 5th season of being here every night, after all.

Anyways, I know for sure that the moon hasn't even reached the top of the sky yet.

The supreme leader likes to make sure he has plenty enough time to toy with me.

He's a bit selfish.

He told me once that since he causes more pain to me by himself than through darkness, he should get more time to cause hurt to me.

A lot more time.

I will open my eyelids now, that I never noticed I had closed.

No wonder I haven't been able to see so far.

I literally have to pry my eye lids open.

My body does not want to expose itself.

It begs and clings for the innocence it had.

But my brain knows better. No way can it just plain escape from the torture. And usually, it's much more pleasant to open my mind myself rather than let the darkness do it for me. When I do it it's just plain scary. When the darkness does...it invades the mind, making me let go of all will, and open my eyes even I don't want to.

It literally rips through the barriers I put up specifically for it. And it's not pleasant to have something in your mind that should not be there.

If I leave the darkness to do everything for me, it will make it way worse. 'It' meaning the torture. 

It will take apart the resistance I have to it. Don't get me wrong, I can't really resist the shadows, but at least it is something. I'd rather save the resistance and barriers for later. See, those types of barriers are a rather one time thing. When something punctures them, the wounds remain. Like when you claw at a cat in a battle, they will always have battle scars.

Yet these tears are wounds. They do not heal, or scab, or scar in any manner. They are left there, as big, gaping holes, reminders of what the shadows can do.

So far, I've been pain-free. But likely because it's only been a few seconds since I've been here. If I don't open my eyes soon, the shadows will do it for me.

But I just can't! I never can. I've never truly been able to open up before the darkness. Never truly been able to let down the barriers either.

And the worst part is that I don't know if it's because I'm not strong enough to face my fears, or if it's because the darkness doesn't let me.

I have no more time to ponder this. Really, these thoughts become trivial when the darkness comes.

And here it is. When my eyes are still closed tightly.

The shadow floods my brain, taking it by surprise. As it penetrates through the first shields I have, I can feel the lingering touches of destructive coldness. They have eaten their way through mental preparation, and as they touch the delicate layers of my brain and my memories that lie beneath they start to turn hot. As if getting to the most vulnerable parts of my mind makes them gain warmth.

No, suck warmth. They are taking it from me. The Antarctic cold they carried that sent my brain into shock is now instead becoming a raging fire, full of cruel, hot gases.

The shadows, now hot instead of cold, burn through my final, strongest shield. They knock it over as if it was nothing, not even a slight challenge to completely destroy.

These shadows are so much more powerful than me, than my shields.

They rip and tear and burn them. The gaping holes I talked about before are making the barriers useless. The edges are marred and black, fire leaping at the edges of each hole and destroying more and more.

Through each hole in flows the darkness and shadows.

And they mass into one being, in the center of my brain.

Who reaches out and grabs my memories, singing them with white-hot fire.

It accesses them. And here is where the worst of it begins.

Here is where my two problems combine forces, with a common goal to harm me.

One problem is the darkness.

The other is, ironically, the very thing I have been trying so hard to protect with my barriers.

My memories.

Here is where they combine.

And here is where the real torture begins.

Chapter 5

Your things feeds off of two energies.

One, your emotions.

And the other your memories.

My thing, my specialty, feeds mostly off of my memories.

My memories, I hide deep within my skull.

Somewhat because they are personal.

Mostly, because by keeping them close to the surface, I relive them.

Reliving them is the last thing I want to do.

Confederation-of-kittens-against-abaddon

Kittens.:)






A swirl of obsidian light twists its way around my body, interetwining itself with strands of my short fur. That one beam of dark energy is all that is left of the shadowy mass. Every single bit of it has been condensed into one tendril.

And that one piece that is left is that much more potent. I know the danger it holds. Somehow, it is much more scary to me than the great barrier full of shadows that was here before.

Why? Two reasons. One, I know it holds more destructive potential. Two, it knows my memories, and memories are what darkness uses to torture me. This single strand has knowledge. The larger mass of shadows did not.

While I've been distracted thinking abuot just how scary the thing twisting in my fur is, it has pried itself away from me, and instead focused its energy on the ground in front of me.

The edges of the shadow tendril twine together. The shape spins in a slow circle, as dark connections spurt between the ends. Slowly, the shape fills in.

I can see the starts of four legs-long, skinny, slender legs-come out from the main hunk of the shadow. Triangles poke out of the end of the shadow closest to me, and eventually the whole thing turns into a cat.

But no, not a cat. It seems like the shadow of a cat, minus the fact that shadows are not three-dimensional. Nor do shadows talk, or move of their own accord.

A/N: Chapter not done, more later (as in tomorrow.)

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