Hello. Welcome to Ember. This project started out as a simple idea for a gift, and has become so much more than that. This nine-part story is dedicated to my favorite musical artist in the world: Kubbi.
On February 5th, 2015, he released the album Ember. This story is a response to that very soundtrack. Each part of this story correlates with a song from Ember, and is correspondingly named. Ember is an adventure that I hope you will enjoy. Thanks so much to Kubbi for releasing this amazing and inspiring creation. If you enjoy what you hear, please go give your support to him.
I’d also like to thank Emily Pineau of Nilly Writes for reviewing and helping me edit and being very supportive throughout the process of writing this.
The story corresponds with the soundtrack. I highly encourage listening while you read. The line breaks indicate the pace you should read with the music. Longer groups of words should be read with more energy and speed. You will get a natural feel for it as you listen (although don’t obsess over it, this isn’t necessary to understand the story itself).
This is part seven of nine to a progressive story, which will be updated once a week. If you wish to see all of Ember so far, it can be found here. If you wish to see the individual posts, they’re listed below:
Part One – Pathfinder
Part Two – Ember
Part Three – Firelight
Part Four – Cascade
Part Five – Compass
Part Six – Overworld
Let us fly into Ember, Part Seven: The Cairn.
Thank you eternally, dear souls, for sharing this with me. ~<3~
The ground began to flatten out;
Rocks were forming a disc.
Grass sprouted between smooth stones;
The trees made room for the obelisk.
Here, now, at the base of the cliff,
The tower ascends to the clouds.
The height, even to them now,
To their minds, confounds.
Pyra began to relax;
It would be okay.
She wanted to feel like
She didn’t have to hide away.
Zeina seemed calm and honest,
And he was kind to her.
Maybe even something more…
Or was it her who felt something more?
He had soft expression,
Black hair that fell straight down,
Shorter than her, by a small amount,
Amber skin, eyes umber brown.
The way he spoke was calm,
Now that he wasn’t as scared,
Because in the warmth of her firelight
Was someone who actually cared.
Zeina whispers, “Well, I suppose
That I’ve said this a lot as of late,
But this sight is absolutely amazing.”
To that, she could relate.
They approach the massive structure.
“Alright,” she says, “Here we are…”
And as she set foot on the stones,
It activates The Cairn.
The ground then softly shook.
The two of them advance.
The symbols begin to glow.
The Cairn holds them in a trance.
Zeina notes, “It feels a lot like the Compass”
Maybe it has similar power?
Taking us to our next destination, that is,”
As they each lay a hand on the tower.
Cracks begin to form in the ground
As the shaking begins to intensify.
“Are we rising again?” Pyra asks.
Zeina says, “I suppose we’re destine to fly.”
Quicker than they’d thought would happen,
The Earth they stand on starts to rise.
The stones pull straight up from the ground,
And everything else is pulled away from their eyes.
Zeina and Pyra fall to the ground
From the sheer force of the rising islands.
The overworld below them is out of sight,
To keep balance, they hold each other’s hands.
The stones, etched with symbols, were realigning,
All starting to form one large array.
The wind blasted down, but the stones remained suspended,
Dancing around each other in every way.
They began to form a path spiraling up The Cairn,
But the thin ledge didn’t suggest stability.
She yells, “Are we supposed to climb that!?
It seems way beyond our capability!”
As she said it, the ground around began to fall.
“We have no other choice! Come on, Pyra!”
He began to lead them up the precarious path,
As the stones kept spiraling higher up.
Zeina nearly slips,
She catches him quick.
“Are you sure we should do this?” she queries.
They both look down,
No longer any stable ground.
“I think we can do this Pyra, no worries!”
Half of the way up,
They pass through a cloud.
Her heart is beating
She is scared,
And slips, nearly falling,
And can’t help but show this,
As she screams out loud.
“It’s okay Pyra! Just hold my hand!”
She listens to him, but at herself is upset.
She’s supposed to be brave, what’s gotten into her?
She doesn’t need help, she’s independant!
It’s times like this that she really wondered
Why and how she was here right now.
She loved to be here with him, but didn’t love the danger.
How much more could her body allow?
Beneath their feet,
The Cairn began
To crack into
She tries to hasten
Her pace for Zeina,
But her body
No longer condones.
To fall again.
The world is spinning,
She watches him,
As he saves her.
She’s too weak now,
Zeina pulls her and him to the top
As the rocks from the Cairn realign themselves again,
They form a wider platform as the bottom dissipates,
Zeina tries to take the situation in.
The rising steadily slows its pace,
And Pyra hits the ground.
She curls up, and he can’t see her face,
As silence takes the place of the sound.
Zeina sits down;
His head hurts from the rush.
Pyra looks up at him,
Eyes teary, softly blushed.
Zeina tries to comfort her.
“We’re safe now. It’s okay.”
She sees that he’s scared too,
But that, he doesn’t say.
Feeling guilt, she looks down again.
And for the first time, sees now inscribed
An image spanning across the platform,
Movement made it feel alive.
Pyra slowly rises to her feet,
Zeina sees, decides to follow.
Etched in stone, a large mural,
Inside a large triangle’s hollow.
A maze to represent the labyrinth,
The Compass in it’s center, it was clear.
It showed the overworld that was below
And arrows marked their rise to here.
Above the platform, illustrated,
Were two birds that flew to the airborne crystal.
Looking up, they saw it’s shining.
Larger than before, she could tell.
“But how are we supposed to get there?”
Pyra asks, but Zeina has no words.
Thinking for a moment, he gets an idea,
And without a word, points down at the birds.
Pyra feels the wind pull at her again.
“It’s crazy, I know Pyra, but we must.”
The wind became stronger, it felt like a gale.
“Okay,” she says, “I’ll trust.”
They jump, and in seconds, the wind takes them free.
They rise with the force of a hurricane.
Spinning, swirling, looping, twirling,
The energy and feeling is completely insane.
Pyra feels she controls the winds,
And uses her thoughts to let them fly.
Zeina lets go of all his fear for her,
And lets them embrace the open sky.
The rocks too rise then, swirling around them,
All entering the crystal’s orbit.
Pyra heads above, and makes a downward dive,
And sees Zeina’s face, by the crystal, firelit.
She slows a little for Zeina,
So that she can take him in an embrace.
Together, they revolve around the crystal,
Looking now, they’re face to face.
Around and around, with the world they danced,
But unlike any other, it was truly enhanced
By the feeling of flight, it feeling so free,
And the clouds were all that they could see.
Together, they let themselves fall to the crystal.
Barreling toward it, like a missile.
She wondered where it would take them next.
She knew it would be nothing that either expects.
The intensity extreme, as the edge of reality cracks,
The energy was reaching an ultimate climax.
She tried to speak, but the wind sucked it out of her.
So to get her message across, they tightly hugged each other.
They fall through at the end,
Once again out of this universe,
The one in which she lived her passion
And finally broke out of her curse.
Pyra finally relaxed, because now
It would truly be okay.
With him, she honestly felt that
She didn’t have to hide away.
Zeina gave her something else, too:
She’d finally found her warmth.
The firelight she’d finally found,
Her reason to explore.