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Day 18: Song

a guest Jun 18th, 2017 15 Never
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  1. Aleksander used to be quite a singer. His voice was deep with a rauchy edge and it played in harmony with everything from jazz to blues to the more eccentric variants of punk. Sometimes he could still hear it, humming in his mind or swirling in his heart, but they'll never be able to leave his lips. All they are for now is to feed the shadows who live inside his lung.
  2.  
  3. He had thought he'd be fine with it---losing his voice was nothing to saving her life---but occasionally there'd be nights like these.
  4.  
  5. The elves had set up a makeshift stage, the fairies had put on lights. The snake charmers, mice pipers, and a tree-armed octopus-faced man were at the back setting up their instruments. At the end of the alley, where the rest of the city began, a crystallian woman was watching the Barrier. The monsters rarely hold parties in the city, for fear that the ruckus it made would break the Barrier and caused the humans to take notice, but, he supposed, it was about time.
  6.  
  7. He had a seat, a stack of discarded crates, all by himself off by the edge of the party. Music was playing, creatures were dancing. There was a spider woman and a tiger man and a centaur and a banshee, even. Up the stage a winged, red-skinned deviless was singing jazz. No one else in the alley was human, but not one of them thought him out of place. There were the shadows inside his lung, and it went up as he smoked, forming intricate shapes above his head. He supposed he would be singing now, if he could sing, and it was the shadow's way of letting them out. Or of making fun of him.
  8.  
  9. Creatures were streaming in and out of the alley as the night went on, from the humanoid to the grotesque to the formless to the winged horrors. Among those, Aleksander almost missed the only other human to visit the party.
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  11. The shadows whispered to him in a sound that isn't a voice: the other human had a ghost on his shoulder. It didn't take Aleksander long to recognise him: he was the hunter he'd met and helped a couple of weeks ago. They took down a Ripper together, didn't they? What was his name, Marion? The shadows nodded in a gesture that's almost like a voice.
  12.  
  13. Heads turned in the hunter's direction, but he smiled easily, and the creatures of the party smiled back, some more in sneers and glares. So, he was a well-known hunter.
  14.  
  15. The hunter took to centre-stage quickly, dancing with the banshee and a crystallian and all manners of non-human ladies as if it was nothing. Aleksander almost envied him. He would have danced; more, he would have gone up that stage and sing, but the shadows was swirling in his lung, caressing his desires. He's not one for the crowds. Not anymore.
  16.  
  17. Aleksander, he leaned back and stared at his pipe. Maybe a dozen years of this and he'd be able to rid his lung of the singing smoke. Or die trying, whichever come first. His life has always been a gamble.
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