Meet Dirk

 So here is a flashback of my character Essence when she was small, having story time with her father. It’s adorable and one of my favorites of her father because he is awesome and there is so much meaning beneath the story he tells for many reasons, that which I can not disclose because it hasn’t all come to light yet in the RP Shadows of the Forgotten. The bits of dialogue that are in bold are usually when a telepath is using some form of power of suggestion. This is noted here for clarification because unless you have read what is posted so far, you wouldn’t know that Ess’ father was a telepath of sorts, more specifically in being like a muse and that gift with the power of suggestion. Many of the things said here, in this flashback, for example, are quotes Ess uses later on or morals or beliefs that are applied to her life later on. She’s only just making the connection because it’s almost like a hypnotic suggestion. It’s subtle, nevertheless. Anyways, Enjoy.

 

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Twenty Six Years ago…Whirlwind..

“Da?” Ess whined, rubbing at her sleepy eyes and dragging her sheep’s blanket behind her. “Da…” She continued, not finding her father in his room but in the living area before the fireplace.

“Essy…it’s late…what’s wrong Sweetness?” Dirk whispered, putting down his pen, kind blue eyes looking over the tiny four year old with concern. “Did you have another bad dream?”

Ess answered only by squirming her way onto her father’s lap and covering both him and herself with her blanket. “I  dunno..” She muttered, bouncing her feet that hung off of  Dirks knees. “I didn’t know where you were..”

“Aww, sweetie..I’m always Here.

What you doing?” Ess asked, staring down at the table where Dirk had left his pen beside a small leather book, torn pages sticking out from beneath the journal.

“Writing stories, Essy.” Her father smiled leaning in and kissing the top of her head.

“What kind of stories? Are you going to read to me?” Ess’ eyes widened in interest as she looked up at her father.

“Maybe when you’re older Essy. Some of them are scary.” Dirk half played, suddenly hugging his daughter tight and pretending to shiver in fright.

Ess giggled, tiny dimples appearing at her cheeks. “Don’t worry Da…I’ll keep the monsters away..” She stated proudly and wrapped her arms around her father’s neck. “I won’t be scared, promise.”

“My brave little girl, so sweet that she would put herself first for her old man.” Dirk winked, absently tugging on Ess’ curls and running his fingers through her hair to loosen a few snarls. “It’s ok to be scared though, Ess. You being brave just shows that there is something more important out there than your fear. But it’s late and you’ll have nightmares, so how about I tell you  a story about your Mother, hmm?”

Ess started to protest, glancing down at the journal as she began chewing on her bottom lip.

“Ok, Da…you  tell me scary stuff when sun is out..and…” She sighed, snuggling up as close as humanly possible to her father, closing her eyes to listen. “I want to hear about mommy being little…” Ess commanded with a tired nod.

Dirk chuckled at his daughter, leaning back with her close against his chest. “Yes, M’am..”

“Let’s see…..when I was around your brother’s age, I first visited this town with my father. Your mother was born here in Whirlwind but I was born…”

Ess chimed in, “Oakstone!”

Dirk chuckled, patting the girl on the back. “Yes, very good Essy. My father was what we call a peddler but he wasn’t any ordinary tradesman because he acquired rare items for people besides the normal everyday stuff we need to live.”

“Like food and fur, but what are rare items?”

Dirk nodded. “Don’t forget the little wooden figurines my mother would carve.”

“Like the dragon!! But if grandma had never seen one, how did she know what a dragon looks like?”

“Now you are distracting me, Sweetness..patience. Daddy will get to that…”

Ess pulled the blanket up to her neck and closed her eyes as Dirk backtracked a bit. “I was not sure what was meant by ‘Rare items’ as they were always kept a secret from me because my Da said it was dangerous to speak outloud of such beauties. If everyone knew about them then everyone would want them and when that happens people fight and destroy those beauties.”

“Why?…If they break them and make them go away, then no one can have em’.”

Dirk leaned in and kissed the top of his daughter’s head. “You are very right. How did u get so smart?”

Ess peeked through slit eyelids and gave a tired smile and shrugged. “Ok, Da. Was this where you met Mommy? How old was she?”

“Oh, right right…Yes, this was when I met your mother. She had to have been a few years younger, so maybe around ten. I didn’t know it then, but your mom had a very special gift and it had just started to show itself. See, my Da set up shop for the day by the Cherry Blossom trees where your mom was playing in the fallen petals.”

Dirk took a slow breath, closing his eyes a moment as if to get a clearer picture, his smile fading as he fought to remain upbeat. “Symphony was the most beautiful girl I had ever seen.” He opened his eyes again and nodded. “That is saying a lot too because my Da and I had been all over Valcrest. She was dressed in white, small pink blossoms embroidered along the sleeves of her gown, the folds of material flowing in the summer breeze. Her hair wasn’t as long as it was when she had you, but it was past her shoulders; straight, dark red hair. Your mom was singing as she danced beneath the blossoms and it looked as if they moved to her voice. It seemed like she was controlling them with her song.”

“Was she?” Essence opened her eyes to look up at her father.

“No, Sweetness. As I got closer I found that I couldn’t take my eyes off of her…and now that I think on it, I can’t remember the words of her song.” Dirk fell silent, quirking a brow as he thought, his handsome smile returning. “It could have to do with what I found out years later from your mother. Symphony believed that everything happens for a reason. Some things are within our control and some are not, but we always have a choice..even if the choice is one we don’t like to think about.”

Ess sighed, shaking her head in a bit of confusion. “Da..I don’t get it..”

“ What I mean Essy, is in my case, I had caught her eye one of the times I visited town but I had never seen her before this day. She chose to invite me into her life, even if in the most not obvious way. Her song was about me..so she said and it..brought me to her.”

Essence’s brows furrowed, a somewhat cranky look in her eye. “You saying, mommy’s song made you love her?”

Dirk chuckled, reaching down to lift his daughter’s chin to look directly into her eyes. “Your mother, only made me notice her. No one made me love her because that isn’t something that can be forced. It just…happens. We can’t control it but…we can control what we do with it.”

“..I still don’t get it..” Ess pouted, causing her father to laugh louder.

“You will..but there you go distracting me again..where was I..?”

“You just met Mommy…”

“Right, right. Your Grandpa, my father had been watching me with your Mother and tapped me on the shoulder to get my attention and passed over to me discreetly a couple small Iris flowers…the color of her eyes…of your eyes, Essy. She allowed me to place them in her hair and that was the moment I really first saw her eyes. It wasn’t just the color, but the way they flashed brightly when she laughed. It brought out an intricate pattern…I mean you know with lots of lines and zig zags…like the veins of that Birch Tree you watched me cut down yesterday.”

Ess nodded, once again closing her eyes as if she were trying to picture her Mom in her head. She listened for some time as she stayed quiet and her Father went off on the fine lines of her smile and the kindness in her touch when he held her hand. It was soothing to listen to the description, making it almost as if her Mother was there with them in that moment.

“Da..You miss Mommy a lot…” She whispered sleepily.

“Yes, Baby girl, I do..She was…the strongest woman I have ever known.” He answered, an obvious tone of sadness in his voice.

“So, what happened next? When did you move to Whirlwind?”

“Aren’t you getting tired yet?” Dirk poked his daughter in the side playfully.

“No..” Ess giggled through a yawn.

“Well..just as my Father was closing up shop and packing away the wagon, a stranger came riding on his horse. He was dressed in black and was carrying a curious package under his arm that he was looking to trade with my Father. Your Mother and I watched as the man revealed a large rock like object, rough to the touch but sparkled as if covered in gems and sapphires. My Da’s eyes lit up instantly, weighing the object in his hands, clearly stressing some under the heaviness before placing upon a table. Without a word he went into the wagon and retrieved what I saw as a dagger. It didn’t seem special but the stranger looked quite excited to trade his object for the dagger. After he left I asked my Da what he had traded the dagger for and he said..it was a Dragon egg.”

“Really? Did it hatch? Was there anything in it? How heavy was it?!” Ess sat up, spewing forth an array of questions.

Dirk leaned in close as if he was about to tell a secret, exaggerating his smile as he continued. “Well…I never found that out. See, I didn’t really believe it was a real Dragon egg, but not that whatever it was, wasn’t valuable. Yet, your Mother looked scared.. She said,  “‘Get rid of it..Dragon eggs only bring death..’”Dirk whispered, clutching Ess tight as if he were afraid, but Essence’s eyes widened, jaw dropping in awe.

“So, I tried to get my Father to listen to her but naturally why would he indulge someone’s fears based on stories alone and no real facts. We can’t go by Myth alone..”

“What about the Twins? They are Myth..” Ess objected.

Dirk nodded. “Yes, Baby girl but they are also a guide. I want you to learn from life and make your own decisions and not just fear something because someone tells you to..”

“But, was it really a Dragon egg? Why haven’t I seen it?”

“..That night, after we had returned  to our home, my Mother and Father and I were sitting down to dinner when the screams began. Outside, the town was burning in bright flames that seemed to spread from nowhere.”

“Was it a dragon?! Did it come for the egg?”

“That’s what I thought, Essy. My Father and I never saw what was causing the fires but we didn’t stay to find out.  We escaped, leaving the egg in fear of taking it with us. My Ma swore the fires came from the sky and she kept telling my Da over and over she saw large shadows that resembled a  winged creature but my Da would never admit to believing it.”

“That’s when Grandma made the wooden dragon.” Ess added, Dirk confirming with a nod. “Why did you leave? Why not build a new house?”

Dirk hesitated, finally stretching back and propping his feet upon the table and snuggled Ess closer. “We were all afraid. Many people died Ess and there were rumors. Rumors of what had happened to the town and who had caused the fires. The few who survived, after that, slowly disappeared. Or so I heard.”

Ess’ eyes widened again. “Did someone kill them? Steal them?”

“I don’t know, Sweetness. But that’s why we went to Whirlwind and made it our home. Wasn’t so bad because then I got to be with your Ma all the time.” Dirk sighed, “But now, little Miss, it is off to bed before all this talk of dragons gives you nightmares.” He stated, rising to his feet with his daughter in his arms, carrying her to her bed with little to no effort. Moving to leave after tucking her in and giving her a goodnight kiss, Ess cried out to her father.

“Da..can you stay in my room?” Essence asked sweetly, somewhat half asleep. “I miss you already…”

Dirk was silent in the darkness, an adoring smile crossing over an amused expression. “If that is what you want, Essy. I’m going to get a blanket, ok?” He shuffled out and back in the room in seconds, only taking the time to put away the book and torn pages first. He settled beside her bed, in an upright position upon the floor.

“I like it better when you’re here…” Essence mumbled almost incoherently.

Dirk rested his head next to her hand and  watched her for a bit before falling asleep to the sound of Ess’ soft snores.   “I will never leave you..”

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