Feck it: Roleplay showcase day!

Disclaimer: Today’s blog is quite long… but if you are in the mood for some awesome writing, please continue.

I had a heck of time trying to figure out a topic for F and, even after I figured one out, as I sat here trying to get started I realized I didn’t want to write about that topic, either. So I said FECK IT (yes, I actually said feck. It’s a thing) and decided today would be a showcase day for one of my favorite hobbies: Online roleplay. Yes, you will often hear me refer to roleplay in my posts. Sorrynotsorry.

I am surrounded by talented friends in this community. Whether it’s the art of writing, in itself, or building our home sites through coding and graphic design, creating complex characters, or figuring out entertaining and incredible plots for us to play with, the people in this community are some of the most creative and talented I have ever met. Today, I would like to give some of my favorite posts– from myself and a couple of awesome friends– the spotlight.

To start with, one of the best posts I’ve ever had the pleasure to read comes from my dear Unicorn, Amber, who is not only a fellow roleplayer, but a fellow author as well. She is currently in the process of finding an agent so let’s all send her those amazing vibes, yes? I know she will have a hell of a fan base when she gets published. (YES, I SAID WHEN, AMBER. Put the matches and kerosene away… NOW!)

Keep in mind, these specific posts are taken from a Harry Potter-themed RP site so you may see things from the HP universe within the posts. This is like a fanfiction with original characters. All creatures, places, spells, objects, etc found in the HP-verse belong to JK Rowling and Warner Brothers Inc. Likewise, I claim no rights to the images provided. They are merely to be used as a general visual representation of the characters’ appearance. All rights and credits to the owners of the images.

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Rylann Olive O’Rourke

Oldest child of the O’Rourke Clan

Protective, introverted, Struggling to find her place in the world

The moon illuminated the pathway, peeking through branches of trees showing the first signs of spring, and allowing the girl to sneak back onto school grounds without the use of her wand. While she was grateful for the dim light, the girl wasn’t sure she was grateful that she had survived what was supposed to be the grandest night of her life. But in typical Rylann fashion, nothing did.

As she moved further up the path, the castle came into view, and if she stood still she could hear the strains of music drifting through the night air. Rylann was supposed to be there, supporting her sister and Clover, and for the first time, she had an actual date to a ball. Nothing went as planned, though, and she shouldn’t have been surprised when an owl with a howler attached had entered her room moments after Aisling had left, howling about something she had done for money. Money that had paid for new Quidditch supplies for her brother and formal wear for the ball. Money that the sender always squandered away on booze.

Her gown, simple yet elegant, had been left draped across her bed as she headed out of her room, dressed in the jeans and t-shirt she had worn while attempting a hair-do for her sister befitting a champion. Family first, and in this case, Rylann would have to deal with her father first before making an appearance at the ball. That was her intention, at least.

As she had done with Maddox, Rylann used the whomping willow to sneak out of school and head to the shrieking shack where she apparated back to the family home to deal with the problem she created. No one knew that she had left, and she was pretty sure, no one would notice which was just fine by her. By the time she had reached the family home, she had worked up a plan on how to explain to her father so he would understand why she did what she had done, drunk or not. It hadn’t gone as she had planned, though. Nothing ever worked out for Rylann O’Rourke, at least where her parents were concerned.

Tonight was no different as she entered the family home and spotted her father sitting in a chair, whiskey bottle in his hand, the air perfumed with the scent of the cheap swill he liked to drink. It didn’t take long for him to realize she was there and start the same old song and dance that they went through on a weekly basis during holidays at home. Rylann stood her ground at first, explained her side as logically as possible, but the result was the same. Same result as always.

When she finally left, clutching a bag against her chest, the acrid smell of smoke clinging to her skin, clothes and hair, Rylann headed back to the only real home she knew, Hogwarts. As always when she snuck out of school and back in, she was careful not to be noticed, even in her current state. The trip seemed to take longer than on the return trip, but it could have been merely because every movement she made, even breathing, caused shooting pains through her body. And while the bag she carried wasn’t heavy, she struggled with every step back to the gates.

Just inside the main gates, she paused and wiped at the tears that still streamed down her cheeks. She needed a breather, a place to hide out until she could control her emotions and deal with what had happened before heading to the castle and her dorm room instead of to the ball she had desperately wanted to attend. The path leading to the castle left not many hiding places, but she walked on until she couldn’t take another step. Taking shelter next to a tree, Rylann slid down the trunk and leaned her head against it. Time for her to figure out a plan.

Rylann wiped away the tears and took stock of her injuries. One black eye, one busted lip, on ripped shirt, and more bruises on her arms, back and legs. Not too bad after dealing with her father, really. Simple things she could cover with make up and bruise cream if she could get back to her room unnoticed. It was her ribs that caused her the most concern as she wasn’t skilled enough to know if they were bruised or just cracked. Not that she had time to figure it out, though. A plan was forming in her mind. If she could get back to her room to change, pack a few items, she could drop the bag she was holding in Declan’s room and sneak back out of the castle before anyone knew she was gone, or able to call the aurors on her.

Get in and get out, that was her plan. Her first thought had been to act like nothing had happened, to say she had been ill and that’s why she hadn’t attended the ball, but if someone got a look at her, caught a whiff of the acrid smoke still clinging to her, and they would put two and two together rather quickly once the news that her parents were dead and the house had burned down. So she was down to one plan: get in and get out. Rylann had decided to head to Knockturn Alley and start at the brothel early. If she could work a bit and then move on to another brothel, in another country preferably. She wasn’t sure how she was going to pull it off, running from the Ministry and still help out her family, but maybe Pearl would be able to help.

Rylann sighed and wiped her face again, ready to finally make the rest of the journey to the castle. Get in and get out. That was her plan, and so she pushed herself up, grimacing in pain as she went from a sitting position to standing, and pulled the bag against her chest once again to cover the damage. That wasn’t the only reason for the bag, no, it was far more important than that. Declan would need it for him and their brother and sister. Important documents concerning their birth and family information were inside, along with a few drawings each of the younger ones had done of the years and an album of baby photos. Things that Rylann had been secretly collecting over the years while her parents were passed out or fighting.

Once again, she walked down the path, the lights from the castle calling her like a beacon. In and out, she reminded herself as she struggled up the path.

And then there is the mastermind of all of it. My favorite cuban squirrel, Jae, who started Hogwarts School Online (the site on which you can find all these posts and more!) and has kept us on our toes with all sorts of shenanigans and chicanery. Her amazing brain for twisty plots is rivaled only by her amazing talent at coding and graphics, which she uses to create a beautiful world for us to play in. In honor of her character, Oliver Gibson’s, retirement as Headmaster on HSO, I will be showcasing one of the most heart-wrenching posts he ever made.

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 Oliver Gibson

Former Headmaster of Hogwarts School Online

Family-man, Stern, Powerful Wizard

Oliver’s soft blue -green eyes gazed upon his wife as everyone’s attention was either turned towards the forest or at their own company capturing that happy count down moment towards the new year. He counted down towards midnight with his wand pressed softly against his throat, his voice bombing throughout the castle, lake and live feed the wizarding radio station was picking up for all those not in attendance to hear. “ONE! HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!” he cried out as confetti and balloons were let lose in the tent, his eyes losing sight of his wife for a split second as a couple blocked his view to kiss at the count down. Dropping his wand, everything was perfect as he thought of the kiss he would receive from his beautiful loving wife. However everything paused, as if in slow motion. Luciana had practically jumped on stage, a worried expression on her face as she turned towards the crowd in front of Oliver, that’s when his eyes found the source she was looking at.

In that second Oliver fought time and space it seemed, his mind instantly said, no no no! As his body reacted to catching Luciana when she fell backwards in to him. Oliver was brought to his knees, holding his wife on his lap as he looked up at the crowd to spot the person responsible for this, to no avail. His heart stopped, there was blood all over his beautiful wife. How can she be bleeding so much, picking up his wand that hand landed a few inches away he pointed it at her chest wound first and cried out in tears, “EPISKEY!” the wound stayed wide open and seemed to be expanding Oliver gasped and looked at his wife as she began shaking, holding her against him and kissing her lips as he cried over her and holding it all together he gasped out once again pointing at her stomach, “EPISKEY!” This was no ordinary hex, his mind was reacting quickly as he tried the next healing spell that came to his mind, “Vulnera Sanentur!” he cried out in a hoarse voice now. This spell would definitely heal a cutting curse a deep wound. But it did nothing but close up the gashes slightly. Luciana looking up at her husband now.

The band began to play one of his favorite songs, a song that reminded him of his Luciana. A Muggle song that he so often thought about when he thought about his wife. “At Last” by Etta James. Oliver couldn’t help but hold his wife now as her beautiful smile tried to filtered through the pain she was obviously in. “No.. no Luciana, honey.. baby please. Don’t say that, we’ll dance soon. To this song.. can you hear it? At last..” He choked out in tears as he sang along, “My love has come along…. my lonely days are over… HEALER!” he cried out as he held her close to him, kissing her blood stained lips again and pressing her close to his chest.

Her body began to convulse and with that came the pain that Oliver felt, this wasn’t real, this was all a dream. Anger made him growl, he shook her shoulders slightly as he gently pressed his palm to her cheek to get her attention, “My love… this is nonsense, you cannot leave me. You’re going to be ok. HEALER! HEALER! FIX HER!” he yelled out to the crowd as a random healer came to kneel besides Oliver and his wife on the stage to Attempt to heal her and the screams from the people in the tent began to happen as they tried to escape. Luciana then spoke trying to get words out that Oliver could only hear her and no one else.

“Luciana?” Oliver tapped the side of her face gently with his palm as she spoke her last words of their children. There was no breathing room here, between the joy of their kids and the pain he was now feeling. Luciana’s eyes closed shut as she gave her last shuttering breath. “NO…” he grabbed her in to his arms as the healer was saying something about stepping back so she could try, but it was too late. Didn’t the healer see that? She had done nothing she was trained to do. She could not fix Luciana who lay broken in Oliver’s arms. No. Gut wrenching sobs escaped the strong man as he held his wife in his arms and rocked back and forth, “Please Luciana.. you owe me a dance. Not yet… it’s too soon!”

Yeah, I could not help but tear up when I read the RP that was posted in. Maybe it’s a had to be there moment, but I love the emotion Jae was able to purvey.

This next spotlight is for a new character that I am currently growing to love more and more each time he is posted. Our dear friend in New York, Dani, has always been an exemplary writer and is even in the process of writing her very first novel. So, defintiely, be on the lookout for her! Her way of stringing things together goes being poetry. She has the uncanny ability to romanticize every post with her wonderful use of language and really stir those emotions,

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Jackson Hunt

Former friend of the O’Rourke boys, Current Love interest of Aisling O’Rourke

Remorseful, striving for acceptance and forgiveness

Jackson’s fingers closed around his wand at last. He was congratulating himself on finding the only weapon he was allotted for this task when he realized that the walls of the pit were closing in on him. He stood, panting while his eyes darted around him and he held out his hands as if to stop the walls from crushing him. Panic was just about to settle into his chest when the walls ceased mere inches from him; trapping him in. He gazed upward. ”Put the damn lotion in the bucket!” the lunatic entrapping him screamed. Dumb-stricken from the fear he had just experienced, it took longer than it should have for him to register what was being demanded of him. In those lost moments, his worst fear materialized around Buffalo Bill as Declan, Clover and Aisling appeared around the mouth of the pit.

Although he’d never admit it, Jackson had always looked up to Declan O’Rourke. Despite being a year younger than Jackson, Declan had a confidence and reckless abandonment that was admirable. Whereas Jackson had a natural inclination to bury himself in a multitude of books – constantly thirsty for new knowledge – Declan had an innate cleverness and the uncanny ability to bring out the best in others – even if it was for his own benefit more than anyone else’s. He also had siblings; he wasn’t alone. Granted, Jackson lucked up a million times better in the parent department, but Declan’s brother and sisters were fiercely loyal. No matter what had happened throughout their lives, they always had each other to lean upon for strength.

The Hunt’s and O’Rourke’s had been neighbors since before Jackson was born. Declan’s mother would often leave Declan and his siblings at Jackson’s – sometimes for days. His mother and father would whisper at night about how unstable the family was and Jackson would strain to get more details, but his mother would unfailingly put up a silencing charm around their room. As the boys aged, Declan had divulged to Jackson the horrors that the O’Rourke kids were dealt on a daily basis due to their alcoholic parents. As time past, Jackson grew to feel like a third brother to the group and it felt right. He found himself becoming vehemently protective of the clan. This loyalty was the very cause he was torn from Ireland and from them.

One day, Jackson and Declan had come home early from primary school. Alone in the O’Rourke house for the first time, they decided to sneak into Declan’s father’s den where they found his naughty magazines and personal effects. The boys were so busy devouring the images in the magazines that they didn’t hear the front door close or the footsteps coming down the hallway. Declan’s face had blanched, eyes wide, when he registered that his father had caught him. A furious Mr. O’Rourke screamed at the boys while removing his belt, wrapping it around his fist, stepping closer to a terrified Declan. Jackson, filled with fear for his best friend and hatred for the man who caused him to scurry across the floor like a frightened mouse, had launched himself between the two. ”RUN, DECLAN!” He screamed as he started to throw whatever he could at the towering man. Mr. O’Rourke had given Jackson the beating of his life that day. He was eight years old. If Declan hadn’t gotten Jackson’s father, who knows if he would have survived?

A week later, Mr. and Mrs. Hunt led their hysterical and bruised son down the road away from his best friend and family. NO! He’ll kill them! NOOOOOO! YOU CAN’T TAKE THEM AWAY FROM ME! DECLAN!!!! Jackson struggled against his parent’s loving, but stern arms, watching Rylann, Declan, Seamus and little Aisling stand huddled together hugging each other at the edge of their lawn, waving goodbye to them. That was the last time Jackson had seen them until a few weeks ago when he returned to Ireland, Hogwarts and the O’Rourke clan, but by then, things had changed between them. Aisling and Seamus had been so young, they could barely remember the boy that spent every waking hour with Declan and Rylann had borne the brunt of protecting and caring for her siblings – it was difficult for her to feel anything anymore the numbness was almost a part of her now. As for Declan, how could they ever be close now that Clover stood between them?

Clover Ravenbrook had been Jackson’s first love. She had enchanted him with her cleverness and how deeply she could feel. He felt like he could fall into the well of emotions that engulfed her – when Clover felt anything she felt it more acutely than anyone else he’d ever known. She was real, intense and not just a little bit dangerous. They had dated for a year – a year of delirious abandonment. If he closed his eyes, he could taste the salt of her tears when he would kiss her cheeks after she had cried in his arms. He could hear the sweet melody of her laugh just as it had been that day they spent at the beach being licked by the waves of the Atlantic Ocean. He could feel the silky smoothness of her hair as it trickled through his fingers when she would press her cheek against his chest and he’d play with her hair as it fell down her back. He could still see her eyes – so deep and green that he felt like he could fall into them and float in the blackness of her pupils forever. Jackson had spent a year drinking up everything that made Clover herself and when she had made the ultimate sacrifice, he had ruined her.

He couldn’t please her how she needed and deserved to be pleased. He knew it. He couldn’t measure up. When she told him that their relationship could not continue to delve into that area of intimacy again, all of the old fears of inadequacy had slapped him into delirium and he lashed out. He projected his fears upon her; he had told her it was her fault when he knew it was his. Jackson regretted it immediately, but the damage had been done. Desperate for a confidant, he had confided in three of his closest friends and they betrayed him. They had stolen from his side table drawer a picture of Clover topless and had posted in an online forum for the entire school to see. They told everyone she had lose morals and was a bad lover. They called her frigid.

When Jackson woke up the next day to the realization of what had happened, Clover wouldn’t take his owls. She had left school early and before he could see her again, her house in Salem was up for sale. The guilt wore heavily upon his heart, but it was intensified when he arrived at Hogwarts to find out that Clover had moved to Ireland and was now dating Declan. Declan, who once called him brother, refused to see Jackson now. He could barely utter a single word to him in any medium. The loss of Clover had been nearly impossible, but the loss of Declan had incapacitated Jackson with pain and guilt. He had hurt them both immeasurably.
It was while Jackson struggled with his guilt that Aisling O’Rourke had come back into his life. She had blasted a fresh sense of life into him; buoyed him up in the sea of his guilt and misery. Just when he thought he’d never love nor be loved again, he had found Aisling and he had not yet expressed his feelings to her. How could he trust himself with the beautiful creature that had become for him an angel of mercy? Albeit, she was strong and could handle her own. He knew that, but he couldn’t risk hurting her, too. He cared too deeply for her already. Although he longed to feel her body pressed against his and her lips part to accept his kisses, he wasn’t able to abandon the sense of responsibility for causing Clover and Declan so much pain and thus was unable to risk hurting her, as well. But even Jackson didn’t comprehend his true feelings for her until now.

Still clutching the lotion bottle in his right hand and his wand in his left, Jackson gazed stupidly up at Declan, Clover and Aisling. His heart raced and his breath rattled out of his chest in short bursts. A sense of dread overtook him as he locked eyes with each of them. Suddenly, Buffalo Bill stabbed them in rapid succession. A howl of despair and panic erupted from Jackson’s depths as he watched blood pulse out of the gashes in their throats. ”NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!” he screamed as he dropped the lotion, shoved the wand into his pants and began to claw at the walls of the pit. His nails painfully broke on the sharp angles of stone as he scaled the pit and threw himself over the lip. ”It’s all your fault. I’ll never forgive you.” Clover sighed with her last breath and Jackson’s heart split into two. Kneeling on his knees, he sobbed as he took her hand between his. ”It is, Clover.” He sobbed. ”It is all my fault. I am so sorry. I’m sorry, Clover. Oh God, I’m so sorry!”

”Feckin’ arsehole, luk wot yer did to us.” Declan and Aisling choked next to Clover. Jackson rocked back and forth on his knees in convulsions of sobs. Guilt wracked his entire body and plagued his soul. ”I’m so sorry!” He repeated as he laid Clover’s hand upon Declan’s – the only kindness he could give them after taking so much from them. When his eyes set upon Aisling’s, Jackson felt acutely the loss of what could have been. He crawled to her lifeless body and cradled her head to his chest, rocking her as he conceded to his sobs. They had only spent the one time together huddled in the enclave of the first floor, but he knew it in his soul the moment his eyes had locked upon hers. She had gazed up at him and he knew. ”I love you, Aisling.” He whispered into her ear. ”I have loved you since I first met you as a baby and I will love you until my dying day. You deserved the world and I have taken your very life. I will never forgive myself and I will never love again.” He kissed her on her forehead, closed her eyes and laid her head softly down on the ground.

His sorrow suddenly morphed into intense hatred and his pain into a fierce desire to kill Buffalo Bill. Jackson stood slowly and pulled his wand out of his pants. He pointed it between Buffalo Bill’s eyes, but before he could cast a spell he was thrust into the air with a rope around his foot. It took every ounce of his mental strength to will himself not to let go of his wand as he flew through the air for what seemed like ages.

Jackson soared through the air, hanging by the rope at his foot. By the time he could collect himself through the inertia, Buffalo Bill was gone and Jackson was falling. Again, he fell in a heap on the floor with a loud thud that echoed in the bright room. Frustration, guilt, fear and anger swelled within him and he lamented. Jackson shrieked a terrible wail until his throat went dry and his vocal cords could no longer produce a sound. Then, he laid there on the glossy floor. Several of his fingernails had torn off completely as he had scaled the pit and every finger bled profusely. He took a deep breath, consciously told himself that to end this nightmare he would have to battle his mind as much as the many horrors this hospital had in store for him. Then he sat up, pointed the tip of his wand to each of his fingers in turn, staunching the blood flow and poorly sealing the wounds. Unfortunately, he had not taken enough of an interest in healing charms to research them himself. Instead, he had assumed what was taught in the standard curriculum would be sufficient. It was only now that he realized how vitally important they were. ”I’m never leaving the library again.” he mumbled to himself as he sat cross legged on the floor. The bruises would require more extensive charms than he could produce so he reconciled himself to the fact that the rest of his time locked in this forsaken place would be full of a great deal of pain. This didn’t exactly improve his mood. It was at this moment that a shiver went down his spine: he was being watched.

Finally, Jackson began to take in his new environment. Everything was glossy and superficial. Directly in front of him was a mirror that took up the entire wall of one side of the room. He caught his own eyes in the mirror. He took in the look of dried blood, puffy eyes and general disarray, when his reflection began to transform. Disbelief showered upon him as his blond hair grew to below his shoulders which narrowed while his form slimmed into a petite silhouette. As alarming as all this was, it wasn’t until two perky mounds protruded from his chest that Jackson reacted. ”You have got to be fucking kidding me! BREASTS! You gave me BREASTS!?!?” He yelled to no one in particular. Jackson threw his arms up in the air while standing. It was then that a white gown fell around his now voluminous hips. He sighed at his female reflection; cocking his head to the side. ”I’m not a bad looking lass.” He said while turning to check out his behind. He shrugged then submitted to curiosity and peaked down the front of the bodice. With quick little jostles of his shoulders, his new breasts jiggled pleasantly. Jackson subconsciously grinned.

The pleasantries of his experimentations abruptly ended as the rhythmic breathing of the room created a threat that could he could no longer ignore. Just as the familiar feeling of panic returned to Jackson’s gut, a door appeared out of nothingness and he dashed off through it, but the moment he entered the room, a noose tightened around his neck and the momentum with which he entered the room had set him dangling, swinging to and fro as the floor beneath him disappeared.

Although the room was empty and the floor had given away, the dingy stained glass windows revealed an old, tarnished hook on the far wall. He thought that if he could swing hard enough that he’d be able to reach the hook and get the noose off of his neck. However, before he is able to formulate a tentative plan, he hears the hiss of a man. He isn’t sure how far away he is or where he is within the room. ”Holmes.” The man purrs. Holmes? Holmes? Like, Katy Holmes? Jackson thought. The name Holmes did not ring a bell beyond his secret obsession with muggle television programing which he indulged in regularly while in Salem. During his struggles, an emotionless voice drones, ”Answer correctly and you shall proceed forward, closer to your goal young champion. ‘What belongs to you, but it is used more by others?’”

A RIDDLE! Finally, Jackson had an advantage. Ravenclaw’s had to answer a riddle every time they wished to enter the common room, and although this fact annoyed him to no end since he had arrived, it had given him plenty of experience to piece together this puzzle. He was about to voice the answer when the spot above the hook transformed. The images of the horrors that Clover was living through were displayed as if he were watching a movie, but even more painfully, what she felt seared him. With a strength he didn’t know he had, fueled by the need to ease her pain, Jackson kicked off the wall and reached for the hook, but with his hand outstretched he realized the images had changed and it was Aisling’s pain that he was experiencing. The hook dug into his forearm and sliced it open like a knife. Blood gushed out of his wound as he swung back towards the far wall. Watching Aisling crawling back to her sister’s lifeless body while being beaten – watching the fate that he knew his absence had caused in her life – filled him with a rage he had never experienced before and he launched himself, breathlessly as the noose threatened to end his life, clutched the hook and croaked, ”My name!”

Phew…. that woman… she has something amazing in her. I cannot wait for her and Amber to finish their writing journeys.

And because my friends tell me I have to include one, and I’d do anything for them, I am going to include one of my favorite posts of my character Aisling O’Rourke. You might notice it’s somewhat similar to Jackson’s up above. That is because both her post and mine are being taken from a sort-of contest where we are given similar writing prompts for our characters to react to. It is HSO’s version of the Triwizard Tournement, the Eternal House Championship.

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Aisling Ann O’Rourke

Youngest of the O’Rourke Clan

Loud, Foul-mouthed, Hot-tempered, naive

Aisling wanted to look away from the images, to block them out and pretend like all of this horror was not happening. It was fake. It was a nightmare. She would wake up soon and the blank EHC app would still be on her dresser (before being promptly dumped in the trash after all this!). She couldn’t keep her eyes closed for long though, as the fear that she might not open them again took hold of her, and each time her eyelids opened she would see a new horror played on the wall above. The competitors were all going through Hell, each one different and personal, but Aissy was able to remain detached from them for the most part… until she saw Jackson.

Her heart raced as she watched him, felt his panic, his dread… and then watched as his fears were brought to life. His fears hit very close to home for her. “No… NO…. NONONO!!” was all she could scream as she watched both Clover and her brother killed. Tears streamed down her face, soaking the rope snugged up under her chin. Her delicate skin was burning from the millions of tiny cuts and now the salty tears flooding them.

She felt as if her world was imploding on her, like she could not possibly hurt any more than at this very moment… and then one last blow hit her square in the gut. As Clover’s image replaced Jackson’s, Aissy not only had to watch Jackson die, now, but she had to witness her brother brutally murdered…. AGAIN… and then discarded down the well to land, broken, at her friend’s feet. A shrill, wordless scream erupted from her, no longer caring to listen to the calm voice that had conceded to her answer.

She struggled on the noose, her arm reaching out towards the image as she screamed, over and over again. She strained, her palm bleeding against the coarse fibers, choking herself even worse as she tried to get to the three people she cared for most. And then they were gone. A long-suffering sob wracked her small frame and she was within seconds of letting go of the rope and letting it end her but the task had other plans for her.

She slid from the noose and fell. Her eyes were nearly swollen from crying, her face wet, nose burning… and she fell limply downward. To Hell? It had to be better than this.

She didn’t know when she’d finally landed. Who could hold onto a concept like time during a thing like this? For all she knew, she could have been falling for hours… months… she didn’t even remember hitting the ground. Was she dead? Her soul felt dead. Can a body live without the soul? She supposed this must be what the dementor’s kiss felt like. It was almost peaceful… in a way.

Her body simply lay on the floor, unmoving, for an indeterminate amount of time until she smelled the familiar stench of stale cigars. And scotch. Her green eyes stretched wide, staring up at the ceiling, before she slowly turned her head to the side. Her father. He was here. Aisling shot up and scurried away from him, her hands and feet scrambling under her. His belt jingled as he slid it from his pants and wrapped the end around his fist, the buckled end swinging free. “No, Da! Please! Oi did nuthin’ oi swear! Oi’m sorry!” she pleaded, watching his arm raise up.

Before it could swing down, though, her sister appeared between them. Once again, as she had done many times before, Rylann put herself between an O’Rourke sibling and the violence of their father. So many times in their lives this girl had bore the brunt of things no child should have to endure, and she did it out of love of her brothers and sister. No matter how much Aissy said otherwise, she loved and admired her older sister and she owed her so much. There would be no way to ever EVER repay her… and yet, here she was doing it again.

Aisling swallowed down the lump in her throat. She wanted to help Ry as she’d helped her so many times before but her feet were frozen. She was frozen to the spot, her skin cold from fear and her stomach churning with outrage at what she was witnessing. “Stop it! STOP! Leave her alone!!”

Somehow, she’d finally found the strength to get up and lunge towards them, hoping to do something… anything… to stop this. But when she reached them………

“NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” she screamed with every ounce of energy she had left in her body. She fell to the ground next to her sister’s body, grabbing at her and pulling her limp form onto her lap. Her arms wrapped around her and clutched at her as she sobbed. Her heart was shattered beyond repair and the shards were cutting her from the inside. “RYLANN! Ry, oi’m sorry. Oi’m so sorry. It shud av been me!! Ye stupid girl… why?! Nooo, Rylann. Please dunnae leave me!! It’s all me fault!! Oi lurve ye, sissy, come back!! Jus’ wake up, sissy!”

Aisling crushed Rylann’s head against her chest, coating her with an endless stream of fresh hot tears. Her sister had sacrificed her life to keep her from getting hurt. Her sister was dead. Because of her. Because she couldn’t act right. She couldn’t stop pissing their Da off. She couldn’t defend herself against him. It was all on her.

Their father rounded on her and snatched her up by her hair, forcing her away from her sister’s body; which was the only thing she seemed to be trying to get to. She’d forgotten all about the task, the EHC, the people watching… she needed her sister. She needed to hold her.

He tossed her around effortlessly, using the buckled end of the belt on her between hits and kicks. Her body was bruised, fingers broke on her left hand, her forehead poured blood from two small lacerations above her eyebrow and in her hairline. Each time he threw her or kicked her away from him, she would try to use the opportunity to crawl back to her dead sister and, every time, he would snatch her up once more. A loud, almost feral, growl escaped her as she finally pulled her wand out with her good hand. This time when he raised his arm to strike, she screamed, “SECTUMSEMPRA!!!!!!!!” and pointed the wand at his throat.

So this concludes the roleplay spotlights and today’s blog. I hope you have enjoyed seeing some awesome writing from some awesome people that just may be the next book on your shelves!

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