[Noxxi] The Man and The Raven
"Geez! I cant seem to find that book!"
"Which one would that be?" the girl next to me said.
"It's called Fear."
"Ohh! I saw it near the Fiction Section."
"Thank you."I reply.
I went around the where the Fiction books were and there were a lot, as you would expect from a book store of course. I search around for that book but I spend more time than I thought looking for it. So I gave up looking for it since it wasn't that important anyway. I notice that there were less people in the store so I check my watch to see that it was already getting late. I went out of the book store and crossed the street, in a hurry, to my apartment. I walk around the streets, passing by people who are also in a hurry to get home. I get lost in thought as I think about how the sun is already setting. I really want that book but it's not worth risking being outside at night. Even if at night, you can see the stars clearly, because there's no pollution and street lamps would light up.Though, this is considered as a warning for "light's out" and only the Night Watcher would be left to roam the streets to protect us.
The Night Watcher, why would we need someone like him when there are people like the police to protect us? It's because of the dangers that lurk in the dark, that only a night watcher can handle. So what are these "dangers" that lurk in the dark? Psychopaths? No. Rapists? Rarely. Criminals? Not even they have the guts to stay out at night either. So what is it? Is the suspense killing you? Speaking of which I just arrived at my apartment, going up by elevator walking towards my room. Anyway, as I was saying, it's not a human you should be afraid of. It should be...Shadows. Shadows? Hah, I bet you'd laugh or think that this is a ridiculous thing. It's no joke, let me tell you that. Shadows are amazing... well, creatures. During the morning, they just like our friends. They show up whenever they are called or whenever they need to. These shadows have their own personalities which, I guess to say that, is also dangerous about them. At night, they walk on their own, lurking in the dark. I don't know what caused this but I do know that something happened many years ago on this island.
Well, anyway, I've arrive at my apartment. It's bigger than most people expect it to be. There's a relatively small kitchen along with a dining area. The living room isn't big but it's enough to fit 4 people and a TV. There two separate rooms, the bathroom and my room. The bathroom is pretty decent and somehow it always smells like lemon in there. As for my room, well I'll talk about it some other time. Also, I live alone. This is because I moved out from my parents. I had to continue my studies even if they are not here with me. I read a bunch of books during my free time, eat at cafes, go to the park and hangout with my friends. You know, the usual stuff that humans do, draw, write, eat, sleep, study, and work. Procrastinate. All that junk. It can get really boring doing the same thing every day and every night. I get so tired easily and that is not a good thing. I take a cold bath and got to bed early but after a few hours, I wake up to a sound of a bird. A bird? I ask myself. I made sure to close the windows and lock the doors. So when I turn on my bedside lamp, I see this bird. Everything felt dreary and I felt chills on my back. I couldn't see the floor either, it was just darkness surrounding me. What made this even scarier was that fact that bird was a shadow. I didn't know what to do, I was so scared that I just clutched on to my blanket. I check my bedside clock to see what time it was. When I saw it, the numbers were backwards but I recognized it was 6:51 AM. It was dark outside and the bird kept staring at me. I waited for a while before it said anything...and yes, it SPOKE. Birds, and even more so, shadows cannot speak.
"Poor girl, so lost in the dark. Always trying to find the light and when you do, it blinds you. You burn at it's presence yet you continue to keep searching and hoping that someday you can grasp it. You don't see it but you belong in the dark and one day, you will accept your fate."
The room became pitch black and the raven became huge.Everything was silent except for the screech of the bird before it disappears. The room was no longer there and I was stumbling in the dark. Then things got bright as I shield my eyes with my arms. I was back in my room holding a letter. It was a black envelope with a skull as the seal that letters in the past which they had used before and my name...my real name, written in the front. Innox. How could it or they, who ever, know my real name? The only name I ever used and said outside, was Noxxi. Which probably isn't the best idea I had but it's a good nickname which I held on to. I am not feigning my name, I just tell everyone to call me Noxxi. If anyone every asked why, I would tell them it's a personal thing and they would shrug it off. Anyway, I am unsure of whether I should open it at all. It was still too early to go to the park so I did somethings to distract myself until then. After using my computer and reading a few books, I take a shower and went to the park using my bike. It takes me a while to find an isolated spot to stay where no one would be suspicious of my letter, especially whatever's in it. I sit down, under the shade of the tree, with good weather.
It was cloudy and there was a gentle breeze that touched my face. I couldn't help but think about what the raven had told me. I really didn't have a shadow but I thought maybe I was a "late bloomer". People would usually have their shadows when they become thirteen, when they become a teen. Or unless you're special and get them earlier...or later, like me, which is rare. It's REALLY weird and confusing to think about but it is what it is. But the raven was right, I have no shadow. I didn't have it for two years now. I don't know how good or how bad this was but either way, nothing has really happened to me...until today. After a while, I take a deep breath and open the letter. There it was written:
"In darkness you shall find your light
Betrayal and smite shall be your might
Friends and family will be your foe
Only when your enemy shall arrive
Will you learn the destiny you hold"
Nothing else was written, not even a name. Instead, at the back of the paper, which this was written in, was a logo. A logo of an "I" with , what looks like, raven wings. What could this mean? I think to myself. As I ponder about this, I notice someone watching me. He's wearing a lot of black and gives off this evil aura. He's not too far away for me to see. So I walk towards him, unknowingly, with the letter still in my hands. He looks at me like he wants me to follow him, which I do. I know, I know, it's a bad idea to follow strangers, especially a guy who actually wants you to follow him. I just have this weird feeling about him, something compelling me to him. It was as if I am under a spell or some kind of trance. I cross some places which I recognize, Marty's Mart, Sean's Shoes, Carl's Comics... all those really lamely funny and catchy store names. Suddenly, he stops by this building which I've never seen before, because I've probably not come across this side of the island, which is not too far from the park. I was about to follow him inside until someone calls out to me.
"Noxxi!" he shouts. "Ack!" I yell in surprise.
I turn around and see my close friend, Orthans. Weird names, huh? Maybe you'd laugh but in our island, having the same name as someone is kind of shameful. I guess not really shameful, but it doesn't approve of "uniqueness".
"Noxxi! what are you doing around here?" he asks me suspiciously.
"Ohh, I was...umm, just looking around." I tell him nervously. "And leaving your bike in the park? Really?"
"Oh my-! I totally forgot about that!... Wait, you saw me in the park?"
"Well...I was actually passing by the park and saw your bike just parked there. So I came looking for you."
"I'm sorry for the trouble! Thanks for bringing me my bike-" I said trying to change the subject.
"So! Who were you following there?" He asks with this smile on his face.
"Uhhh I don't... er, really know."
"You don't know?"
"No. I don't."
"You don't know?! Then just WHY are you following him then? And WHY do you have a black letter in your hand?!" He shouts, intent on knowing the truth.
"I- well, I mean- can we just not talk about it here?" I beg him as my voice faltered.
We head back to my apartment, but as we left, I feel that someone is staring at me. A certain gaze that gives me chills running down my spine. I felt quite uneasy so I served cookies that I baked a few days ago. For a while we couldn't talk, all we did was drink water from time to time. I didn't know what to say to him, I was too nervous and shocked by my letter. I kept thinking about the raven, the man, and what any of those words meant. I was thinking so much that I didn't even notice that Orthans was staring at me. I didn't know whether I should tell him about what had happened today. He is my... friend, I HAVE to tell him but I couldn't think well because my mind was all jumbled up.