The Island


delia2_icon.gif russo_icon.gif

Scene Title The Island
Synopsis No man is an island, sometimes it just takes a wayward wanderer to let herself in.
Date November 22, 2010

The City by the Sea

Twisted spires of pearlescent hue climb high into the sky, fashioned to look very much like giant horns of various species. Some are twisted, some straight, all fit together like a giant puzzle. The swirling towers on the edge of the cliff are clustered together so that travel by land is unecessary, unless of course, you decide to travel outside of the walls. No one ever does that. It's just silly.

Under the light of the pale moon, the city on the Sea, so far distant from the kingdoms of the shadow and all, is ruled with an iron fist by a harpy of a queen. At least, that is what the rumors would have one believe. From one tower, a man gazes out onto the white waves and watches the dance of mermaids and unicorns as they try to reach the land. There is no beach here, only desolate walls of rock to crash into.

From the outside, a minuature figure approaches by boat. Though a tall from the standpoint of an average person, the people from the City of the Sea are rumored to be very willowy and statuesque. The average height of one child is supposedly the same as a grown adult from any other land. Everything about the City on the Sea is larger than life.

Delia's blue eyes widen as she stares up at the wall of stone. At it's top the pearly colors of the kingdom shimmer in the silvery moonlight. From an outside perspective, this approach might not have been the most intelligent… but a circle of the city from the tiny sailing vessel proves that every entry point is the same. An island kingdom.

The tower itself sheens almost like pearl, a simultaneous haven and prison in which its occupant dwells alone, watching the outside fanciful creatures in the anarchy of the world outside; it's a world beyond his control. But here, inside this place, little comes in and little goes out. In solace here he dwells, able to watch without needing to partake.

Contrasting Delia's, a similar pair of blue eyes narrows at the figure on the water. The thick band of dark eyelashes close together drawing creases across Russo's forehead. His teeth graze his lips, whitening the skin below through applied pressure. He shuffles from his spot at the window, the figure pulling him out of his solitary reverie. His clothes themselves meld with the ambiance. A green tunic paired with brown pants and brown leather boots conceal the sword fastened to his belt. Whether hero or villain, the man is equipped. But even then, neither of these roles are particularly for him. Instead, on the opposite side of his belt he has a giant horn at his side— he's a watchman.

Quiet steps carry him down the stairs of the tower, closer to the shore, yet still far away thanks to the endless wall of rock. Once outside, his eyes narrow again. The horn is brought to his lips and he blows resounding a loud blast against the echoey water.

The tiny sailboat drifts toward the rocky shores, the woman inside uses both hands to control the rudder. Letting the sail drop, she uses the power of the waves to allow her closer to the shore and the tiny nook in the slate wall that seems to be the only entrance by sea.

The horn that sounds her passage, is a welcome noise, at least from her perspective. Looking up, she lets loose the rudder with one hand to wave upward, perhaps for a helping hand or just to show that she means no danger. Then again, a single woman on a handmade boat… It's absurd to believe that she could do any harm to a city such as this.

The hand does its work, drawing the gentleman out of the watchman. Leather boots pick at the rocky shore, light footed and haphazard, moving from one ill-balanced rock to the next, finally come to aid the woman approaching.

Russo reaches out to steady her while warm recognition twinkles in his eyes. Yet, even with that recognition, something unsettled lays waste in his countenance. His lips quirk downwards, his forehead creases, and his gaze, however momentarily, turns back onto the island, looking upwards to whatever dwelling Delia may find this assumed queen.

His blue eyes return to hers, wrought with some unspoken warning, even as he attempts to help her out of her handmade boat.

"You shouldn't have come," the words are cracked in his raspy throat.

"Why not?" The traveler's confusion is more than just words, the curious quirk to her eyebrows and the frown on her face would point toward this very simple fact. Her white dress, scarred with dirt and grass stains, was once white and very pretty. Now it's dull and in great need of a wash. "I came all this way…"

Reaching into her pack, she pulls out a small bottle of an orange-yellow liquid and uncorks it. Offering it up to the man, the scent passes by his nose, a delightful bouquet of different fruits. "You're thirsty, drink that."

It may not be what he's thirsty for, but the crack in his voice may stop if he drinks it.

The liquid is taken and promptly examined. Russo's lips twitch to the side in careful consideration of the fruity fluid given, but he follows the directions, even if unsure about the nature of the drink. The bottle is brought to his lips bringing refreshing as he swallows. Another glance is given towards the island. "Not everything is as it appears," he answers cryptically. In a way, he's an odd watchman, set to alert residents as well as visitors.

"You need to be kept safe. Innocent angels don't belong here. 'The innocent and the beautiful have no enemy but time,'" he quotes Yates. "This place, it will rob you. When ignorance pops, innocence can't linger."

His gaze moves to her eyes again before he's nodding his head to her, "I wouldn't send you away." There's a long pause as he adds, "But I wouldn't have had you come. It's not safe here."



The shriek of a harpy echoes through the small cavern they stand in. Matching blue eyes meet before they both avert to stare up the staircase again. "That…" Delia doesn't want to say it, slowly her hands curl around her pack like she's hugging a security blanket.


The island shakes and a few rocks tumble down the staircase toward them. Their eyes meet again and the redhead wrinkles her nose and grimaces a little. "Is that what makes it not safe?" Slowly, she begins to pad up the stairs, her bare feet clicking up the bare stone pathway as she tries to reach the top.

Russo winces at the sound of his name; his own cringe a telltale sign of his blatant repulsion for this prison that he's made, and the apparent harpy who runs it. "There's more than that," he returns as he reaches a hand out to her pack— he'll carry it, if she'll let him.

"Places of beauty tend to be places of treachery. And the more beautiful something is, the easier it is— " he cuts himself off and shakes his head. "Be careful," he admonishes before issuing her a lopsided smile. He follows her up the stairs, only to try cutting in front of her with a shake of his head, "It's better I go first."

With those words, his leather boots clip up the stairs two at a time.

The young woman's pack is held tightly to her chest and she slowly shakes her head no to the man. With her back glued to the wall, Delia allows him to pass by. "Are you Bradley?" There's a little flicker of recognition in her features, thanks to the gift of unusual memory from the oracle, she's been able to retain a little more for a little longer.

Though it's dying.

"So, it's better to be ugly?" According to him, the beautiful things are horrible… Like chocolate covered maggots. Better to take the raisins in that case, even if they are the ugliest of the snack candies. The harpy's call has calmed some, at least it's not shaking the island anymore, but a dark shadow passes over the stairwell every once in a while. Blocking the moonlight, it makes it difficult to see.

"I used to be," Russo answers quietly. "I let Bradley die a few years ago. He drowned." As he reaches the top of the stairs he turns to look at Delia, "It wasn't in water. Anyone that knew him could tell you that." The faint echo of his steps draw him back into his watchtower. "You can call me Brad. I think I already said that," Only he didn't.

"Beautiful things get destroyed, leaving only ugliness to be admired. The little good and beauty a person can offer to the world almost needs to be hidden. The ugliness, the darkness, and the void… those things last— besides, in the words of Hemingway everything truly wicked starts from innocence." His lips press together uncomfortably.

Twins, or a doppelganger, it's the only conclusion that Delia can come to in regards to the depressing bit of chiseled flesh in front of her. Handsome, yes, but hopelessly mired in a bog of unforgiveness and self loathing. "You didn't," Delia echoes his thoughts with words. Stepping in time only two steps after him, the young woman climbs toward the top.

When they break the surface, her blue eyes widen at the sight. The giant spires that reach for the heavens seem more beautiful, larger, that anything she has ever seen. They are also more barren.


Aside from the watchman and the shrieking voice, there is no one living here. Like the palace of the King of All, this place … so very tall and so very lonely.

When Delia's eyes widen, Russo interjects, "I never let anyone in here." Yet he didn't hesitate to lead the redhead up the steps. Irritably, his fingers run through his hair. He hasn't even called back, hasn't acknowledged the death harpy screaming his name— as far as he's concerned no one except him belongs on this island; it had been that way for so long.

His gaze turns to the horizon out the window for a moment. But his name and the constant hollers beckon some action. He doesn't yelled— hasn't yelled for years. There was nothing worth yelling about. In many ways, this room, this place is an empty shell, beautiful but hollow— wholly concealed and solitary. A glance is given to Delia and something switches in his mind. Haphazardly his head tilts one way and then the next, silently weighing consequences in his own mind.

His gaze turns upwards as if aiming for the heavens themselves, "WHAT?" His yell is so unlike hers. The words are metallic, cold, and empty as he addresses the harpy. But then the word was never really for him.


For the first time since the harpy first attempted to land, there is stillness. No sound save for the crash of the waves hitting the cliffs. For those few minutes, peace fills the room and the heart of the man by the window. All the while, the young redhead watches on with eyes as wide as saucers.

It begins as a low keening, the tiny whine from the harpy. "Why won't you visit me? Why don't you call?" The quiet crooning from outside the window, an attempt to lure him out. "I'm not like that anymore. I've changed." It's always the same, this harpy, the next, they're all the same. All of them needy and insistent, none of them strong enough to stand on their own. Proudly.

Delia eyes the moonlit water through the open portal in the wall. The shimmer of the waves so pretty. "This place is like paradise… it could be." Her words will either strike true or ring false. "Why don't you let anyone in?"

The words actually cause Brad to cringe. No man is an island, but there's no denying Russo tries his hardest. He sighs as his hand rakes through his hair. "I… I don't know," he admits to the harpy, he doesn't. He couldn't explain it if he wanted to. Not to her. Yet, someone else is here. And he let her inside.

He turns to Delia, his voice low and soft, "No one gets in here because this place, this beauty, it was never mine in the first place." He swallows. Heavy laden steps carry him to the window. "It was hers" he says to the sky. "I just borrowed it. And to let someone inside…" He places his hand over his heart and recites Shakespeare:

So dear I love her that with her,
All deaths I could endure.
Without her, live no life.

"When you've experienced love like that, how could anyone ever feign to enter that which belonged to her?"

One true love. Delia can't argue with it, it's something she believes very strongly in. Giving him a smile, she reaches into her pack and digs around in it until her face lights up. From its depths, she withdraws a small pearl that lays flat like a puddle in the palm of her hand. "It's a teardrop from the moon," she explains as she pads over and lets it slither from her palm into his hand. "I don't think she'd mind if you let someone inside to visit… even if it's not to live here."

When she leans out the window, she balances herself on the sill and cranes her neck to spy the harpy. "You shouldn't shriek for him all the time," she begins, whether she's listening or not is unknown. "I know you're probably lonely, but you can't force anyone to let you in. Especially when you're screaming at him all the time. Why would he? So shoo bird, fly away home."

"Visitors could ruin it," Brad counters as he paces around the silent room, his steps making that faintly echoey shuffle sound. "You can visit though. Even if it's not safe." It's an invitation rarely extended. "You and I are cut from a similar cloth. You're smart, fiery…" he attempts to meet her gaze, "But you didn't let yourself die."

His shoulders slump against the heavy sigh he emits. His lips purse against his next thought, the sheer notion of it making him uncomfortable. "Do you think people can come back from the dead? That a person could resurrect some former version of themselves? Or is death the end? When you let yourself drown, can there be any happy ending?"

"I don't think people ever really die…" The honest admission comes from some personal instances of witness. "Somewhere they're always alive, in your mind and in your heart." Delia gives him a little smile and glances at the tear drop in his hand. It glistens under the silvery light of the moon, sparkling and shedding a bit of light of its own.

"I think that if you've let yourself drown, the first step would be to come up for air. Breathe." Laying a hand on his shoulder, she squeezes it once and then lets it fall away to hang limp at her side. "Visitors won't ruin your paradise unless you let them. They'll learn to protect it just like you did. You just have to trust someone…" Maybe it starts with the person he let into the room. "When you have one, then it's easier to let another one in."

"Trust doesn't come easily, but sometimes it's innate," Russo admits as his hand closes around the tear. He holds his fist close to his heart and closes his eyes. When they reopen, they glisten with moisture, "And that's why I trust you, isn't it? You're… this isn't…" They shut again as he murmurs quietly, "Because you're — "

With a gasp of breath Russo sits up in his bed. His cheeks moistened with real tears, bitter tears melting underneath that sparkle of trust, that twinkle of recognition. " — my sister…" His breath turns raspy in his throat as his heart pounds in his chest. His hands immediately rub against his cheeks, catching the stray moisture lining them. A glance is given to the half drunk glass of whiskey beside his bed.

The blankets are thrust off the bed as he bolts to his feet, bound to the kitchen in search of his phone. He dials all a tremble, yet he knows there's no chance he could call even if he knew the number. Yet one fact remains: something is wrong.

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