Original Stories Fan Fiction ❯ VIRUS ❯ Pippin, Light in the Darkness ( Chapter 2 )
[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
By: Melissa Norvell
Chapter 2: Pippin, Light in the Darkness
Rosario slowly opened her eyes to a hazy image of white and tan. It appeared to be some sort of figure. She wasn't quite sure of what the image was but it appeared to be human-like even through the haze. The girl blinked a couple of times and as her vision clarified, the features of the mystery figure had become more and more distinct and she soon found herself looking into two large, round eyes that were of a bright blue. They were innocent and curious in nature; much like the eyes of a child.
"Who…Who are you?" The drowned girl asked through a groggy voice as she propped herself up. The texture of the surface was grainy against her elbows and very pliable like sand.
"I was about to ask you that, but since you asked me first," a young, tanned girl placed a hand to her chest. "My name is Pippin! Let me help you up!" She seemed cheerful enough as she offered her a hand.
Rosario gazed at the strange girl for a few moments to take in her features. She had tanned skin and short, snow-white hair cut in a pixie cut. She was adorned in short, white shorts with high stockings of the same color and simple black loafer-like shoes. Her shirt was very bizarre and unlike anything she's seen before. It consisted of two large straps that were placed over either shoulder and ran down her body. They covered her breasts but left everything else exposed. The material was very light and almost seemed like the equivalent of bed sheets. They were navy blue in coloration and two rims that consisted of a gold and crimson triangle pattern that ran down the length of the fabric on either side. The fabric was long, nearly like a knee-length skirt and fluttered about the young girl's knees as she moved her legs. Pippin also wore a bizarre head piece that appeared to be some type golden band worn across the forehead with two loops. On these loops were very long, shiny pieces of metal that were in the shape of small blades. She wondered how Pippin didn't get irritated with them hanging in her face like that. The young girl appeared to be no more than fifteen years of age. It was a very young age for being out in the pitch of night by yourself without guardianship.
She took the girl's small hand and allowed her to pull her up from the ground. Rosario's clothes were wet and clung to her body like shrink-wrap. She decided to introduce herself as well. "My name is Rosario. What happened?" The girl glanced back up towards the place that she fell from. "How did I get here?"
Pippin's gaze followed the other girl's as she responded. "Looks like you fell off of that cliff up there."
She could see that it was a cliff?
"Cliff?" The wavy-haired girl continued to gaze up. She concentrated as hard as she could in order to see the aforementioned cliff but it was so dark that she could barely see an outline of it. "How did I live from a fall like that?"
It really was incredible considering the cliff was nearly three stories tall. It was lucky for her that she fell into the water instead of falling to her death on the ground.
"The water probably broke your fall. It's a good thing that you didn't hit the side of the cliff on the way down. It's very jagged," Pippin informed.
The very scenario unnerved Rosario even more.
"How can you tell? It's hard to see," the soaked girl wondered how anyone could see. It was nearly pitch black and the only thing that could be seen was silhouettes and shady-looking figures.
"Well, the sun isn't really out yet. It's kind of like night time," Pippin educated.
"Then that's the moon?" Rosario pointed to a small round light that illuminated a small portion of the water that she had just submerged from. It didn't look like much of a moon at all. No wonder it was so dark in this place.
"I guess, I'm not really sure. I call it the moon because it's smaller and makes less light. There is a larger one that makes it look like twilight outside. You can see everything…Well, nearly everything," the dark-skinned girl explained.
"Are you from this place…Pippin, is it?" Rosario was a little unsure of her name, considering she had only heard it once.
"Yes and yes, I'm Pippin. I can show you around Versailles if you want," the friendly girl offered.
"Versailles? Is that what this place is called?" Up until just now, she had not known where she was. Versailles didn't even sound Japanese at all. Wherever she was, it was very far from Japan.
"Yeah, I can tell you all about it!" Pippin was eager.
Rosario clasped her hands and smiled. Thankfully there was someone around to answer all of her questions. "Thank you so much! I really appreciate it! You know, you're the only person I've met here besides an angel on a cross," the girl stated as the two began to walk.
"Angel?" Pippin looked at her with a perplexed face.
Her cohort stopped momentarily. "Yes, why are you looking at me like that?"
"Do you know that there are very few people who have ever met him?" The girl began to walk again.
"How am I supposed to know that, Pippin? I just got here," Rosario continued after the young girl.
"Oh, right! I forgot," Pippin felt a little dumb for mentioning the very thought of the subject now. She was used to everyone she knew being from Versailles, so foreigners were a completely different concept for her.
"Can you tell me about him?" It would be a good idea to know why exactly this angel was so important.
"Sure, his name is Iga. He's the pillar of Versailles."
"Yes, his power alone keeps everyone in Versailles alive. If something happens to him the people die," the tanned girl informed with a slight incline of her head and sorrowed expression on her face.
"Why is he on that cross? Does he have to suffer to keep everyone alive?" Rosario felt a little sorry for him. When she had first met him, she couldn't get him down. She had vividly recalled all of the blood that had been flowing from his open wounds. Even the flowers below him were tainted in the angelic substance.
"I don't really know. I don't know that much about him. Only the Virus and the Queen really know everything about this place."
"Virus and the…Queen?" Rosario inquired. This place was getting very strange.
"Yes, the Queen of Versailles is named Ambaralla. She created this place with her powers. She's the strongest person here. She's even said to have the ability to pull people from other worlds into Versailles." That must have been why she was there but why would the Queen of Versailles want her? She was just a normal girl with a normal life. There was nothing special or sacred about her at all. Why was she being summoned to a mysterious and eerie place such as this?
This place so plagued with darkness and haunting visions of crucifixes and roses.
It was like a beautiful macabre image burned into a horror novel.
"The angel told me that someone pulled me here and that the answers to my questions were in this place. Do you think Ambaralla was the one who did it?" This got Rosario to thinking. She wanted to find out why she had been selected to go to a place like Versailles. Surely, there was some reason.
"Wow, Iga spoke to you? You really must be special!" Pippin was in awe. It was very rarely that the crucified angel spoke to anyone other than the Queen, Virus or any other high authority figures in Versailles.
"Why is that such a big deal?" Rosario was a little confused on the issue. It would have been rude if he had not spoken to her and it was only common courtesy to be spoken to.
"Well, Iga doesn't usually talk to anyone who doesn't live above. Iga is really quiet and most people think that he's mute. Then again, most people have never met him," Pippin was quite intrigued with Rosario's tale.
"They haven't? Why not?"
What was the big deal with the guy anyway?
"He's the entrance to this land," the tanned girl informed.
"So that's why there's a gate there."
"Yes, once you go in, you can't come out."
"What!?" Rosario exclaimed. "Are you serious? You mean I'm stuck here!?" Not only was she in a land full of uncertainty, she was stuck there with no way out.
"The only way out is to get to Queen Ambaralla and see if she'll let you leave," Pippin explained.
"How do we get to Queen Ambaralla?" The watermelon-haired girl was very worried now. She didn't want to be stuck in Versailles, away from the only country that she'd ever known. She wanted to be able to go back to Osaka and visit her friends and what little family she had left.
"No one knows where she is but I can help you find her," Pippin felt a little bad for the foreigner. She knew that this strange girl didn't belong here and she was even a little worried that Rosario would kill herself trying to get out.
The odds were clearly against her but that didn't mean that she would give up.
"Yes, I'd like that," Rosario was very grateful.
"Okay, I'll be your guide," Pippin pointed to herself and smiled brightly. She liked feeling so useful. "Just leave it to me!" She winked at the other girl.
"So, who is this Virus that you mentioned?"
"He's one of the most powerful people in Versailles. No one really knows what he looks like. He kills in the dark and is said to be trapped in a mirror that Queen Ambaralla has with her. He's her personal servant and if you mess with the Queen, then you mess with him. If you live through the infection then you might be lucky enough to face off against her majesty." Pippin educated her new found friend.
"He sounds scary. I hope I never run into him." Many frightening thoughts ran through her head of what the Virus could possibly look like and the results even made her more edgy than before when she knew nothing of him.
"I heard that you only see him when you're being punished or you try to escape so you'll probably run into him." It was creepy how that girl almost seemed to insure the fact.
'How do I win against someone like that? I'm just a normal girl.' Rosario fretted before she spoke again. The look of unease was clear on her face. "Pippin?"
"How long have you lived here?" A good subject change was in order. Rosario didn't like that path that their conversation was headed that was for certain.
"Huh?" The girl blinked. She seemed thrown off by that question. Pippin had thought that Rosario would have inquired about something else that pertained to Versailles, not something personal regarding her.
"You seem very young. Did you grow up here?"
"I don't know," the tanned girl looked as if she were attempting to recall memories but none came. There wasn't the slightest thought that jerked her in one direction or the other.
"What do you mean 'you don't know'?" That was a very strange answer. Unless this girl had amnesia or something then she should at least know something about her past.
"I don't remember," Pippin still struggled to think. "All I know is that my name is Pippin. I'm fourteen and I live here in Versailles." The girl smiled up at her.
It was clear that this conversation was going nowhere.
"Doesn't this place creep you out?" The other female's green eyes scanned the horizon. Her eyes had still not become used to such conditions and she felt as if she were nearly blind in this dark place.
"Creep me out?" Pippin didn't really see what there was to be afraid of; then again, she was used to it.
"Yes, it's so dark in here. There's never any sunlight. The skies haven't even cleared up either. It's like it's always gray here."
"I've never seen a clear sky," the white-haired girl responded. For as long as she could remember, the skies had always been gray.
"Really?" Rosario was amazed at her answer.
"Yeah, it's always been cloudy outside. The lightest I've ever seen is where you can see for a while but if you come to shaded areas, then you can't see at all."
"Yeah, like just before the sun goes all the way down or when there's a full moon out. You could see everything even in the dark where I come from," Rosario explained.
"Where you come from?" Pippin had forgotten that she'd never really questioned the strange girl's origins.
"I'm not from Versailles, I'm from Osaka," the wavy-haired girl sat a hand on her chest. She had many questions running through her head and it was hard to resist from asking something every minute.
It was nothing like Osaka.
"Osaka?" The ever-curious girl asked again.
"Yes, I come from Osaka, Japan."
"Where did you come from?"
"Here!" Pippin exclaimed happily. It was all too natural for her. Some things, however, didn't make any sense. How could she be so dark-skinned and come from such a dark, dank place. Surely the deprivation of sunlight would fade it, especially if it wasn't much lighter when their version of a sun did come out.
"Well, where is Versailles at? Is it in Japan?" After all, Pippin did speak Japanese. Rosario didn't know of any places in Japan that stayed dark all of the time but she figured that it wouldn't hurt to ask.
"I don't know," the girl put a finger to her lips in thought.
"How can you not know where you live?" Rosario was a little irritated that her conversation with Pippin was getting nowhere. For someone who lived in this land for a long time, she didn't seem to know anything.
"No one knows where here is, really. To everyone who lives here, it's just Versailles," Pippin really didn't know how to explain it any better than that.
The watermelon-haired girl continued to glance around occasionally at her surroundings. Everything looked the same in this place. Barren land with the occasional tree or field of grass, cliffs and uncertain drop offs and lots of bodies of water.
"Versailles sounds Italian but you seem to know my language," she threw out the lack of language barrier as an issue. If she were in a different land, then wouldn't it be difficult to communicate?
It was incredibly odd that Pippin spoke her language.
"Everyone in Versailles speaks the same language," the girl noted.
"That's really weird, you know?"
Pippin nodded. "I don't think I've ever seen a blue sky," then she reverted her answer back to the previous topic at hand. Seeing a clear sky was an interesting concept to her. Since the topic had been brought up, her mind was now fantasizing about seeing a clear sky and what one might look like.
"Don't you want to? I mean, don't you want to see everything clearly and not just sometimes?" Don't you want to see something besides the dark?" Rosario asked. To her, Versailles seemed like a very depressing place to be. She'd be dejected staying there for too long. Rosario liked the sun and the animals and even the busy cities like Tokyo. She never found herself craving a sunny day as much as she did now.
"It never really bothered me," Pippin, on the other hand seemed nonchalant about everything. Nothing bothered her and Rosario found that fact very disturbing. To her, it just didn't seem normal for someone to want to be in the darkness all of their life and be fine with it. Humans usually got sick without some type of sunlight, unless they had a disease that prohibited them from going outside. "Versailles is my home. I've been here for a long time. I never left it and I've never really wanted to. As long as I'm here, I'm protected and nothing bad will happen to me. I get to live peacefully."
"Wouldn't you like to leave with me? We could go to Osaka together!" Rosario smiled brightly at the thought of returning home.
"Really?" Pippin's face lit up with joy at the very mention of seeing a new world.
"Really, you can show me how to get out of here and I can take you with me. Besides, if you're here by yourself, you must be lonely." This comment caused the child to become disheartened.
"Yeah, I really don't talk to anyone here at all. Nobody really lives around my area. It's just Pazusu and I," Pippin's voice was very quiet and low.
"Pazusu?" Rosario questioned at the mention of the other's name.
This caused the white-haired girl's emotions to do a 360 once more as her features glowed. "Pazusu is my older brother. Hey! Maybe he wants to come with us!"
"Uh sure," the other girl said a little unsurely. Pippin sure liked to rush things, "I'd like to meet your brother. Can you take me to him?" The girl agreed and informed her that her brother travelled around a lot and knew many pathways and trails around Versailles. Rosario told her partner to take her to her place of residence. Pippin agreed as the two of them continued to advance towards their destination.
On the way, the tanned girl advised her that it was dangerous if she didn't stay close behind her. Rosario obliged. She didn't want to fall off of another cliff like she had upon first arriving in this strange place.
"Tell me about it! I fell off of a cliff when I first came here and I'm lucky that there was water at the bottom or I would have died," she noted. 'But still...' Green eyes set their sights to the stars. 'I wonder where all of that blood came from...'
"How long does it take to get to a town?"
"We have a little bit to go before we get to my house," Pippin looked over her shoulder.
"The sky sure is pretty. I like how many different shades there are."
"Yes, it's pretty at night," the girl agreed with Rosario's statement.
"Why did you go out at night? Isn't that dangerous?" It was very dark in Versailles and it was easy to fall from the cliffs straight to your death, so why would this child's parents let her wander around in the dark? It seemed negligent on their part.
"No, it isn't. I've never had anything happen to me since I've been here," Pippin reassured.
"Your brother trusts you by yourself?" That was a little shocking to hear her say, and so carefree at that.
"He's only four years older than me," Pippin really didn't see the big deal. Her brother let her go out alone all of the time.
"So, he's eighteen and you're fourteen," Rosario did the math in her head.
Pippin confirmed the information and as soon as the agreement sprung fourth from her lips, a dark figure rushed past the two of them at a high speed, enough to make a motion blur and a small amount of wind brushed against the two girl's skin lightly as chills of uncertainty danced up their spines. They stopped dead in their tracks.
"What was that?" Rosario slowly turned half-way. She dreaded what she might see when she had stopped her pivot. As expected, there was nothing in sight but the same shroud of darkness that had hung in the air from the first moment that she'd been there.
"I don't know. That's the first time anything like that has happened," Pippin glanced around for any sight of the mysterious figure but she too, saw nothing but black. Rosario inched in very close to her; close enough to feel her body heat. A few moments later, the wavy-haired girl placed her hands lightly on her bony shoulders.
"What should we do?" Rosario's breath was a little ragged with fear.
"Maybe I can scare it away!" Her partner was all too happy with facing their new potential antagonist.
"How can you scare it away?" Rosario asked. After all, Pippin was just a young girl, unless there was something that she was missing. Before she could start up another sentence to further explain her question, the same figure shot in between her and Pippin, which caused the two girls to shriek and be flung back in opposing directions. She called out to her team mate but she got no reply as her form hit the ground. The frightened girl held out her forearms to keep her face from colliding with the cold, dark ground as her body touched it. She glanced up and tried to ask if Pippin was alright but the girl was standing in front of her already. For that moment in time, Rosario felt stupid inquiring on the matter.
Pippin closed her eyes and smiled happily. "I'm fine," she reassured and extended her hand to help the girl up. "Need help?"
Rosario reached up to take her tanned hand. She thanked the other girl and as soon as the words of gratitude escaped her lips, a fierce rumbling sound could be heard.
Suddenly, a large spire plunged itself from the ground beneath Rosario and yanked her form upwards as it shot towards the cloudy-stricken skies. In a fright, the pink-haired girl let go of her friend's hand and screamed as her form disappeared.
Pippin called out to her but she knew that Rosario was too far away. The spire soon stopped and the helpless girl stopped. Her form flew up a little and for that split second, she felt the loss of gravity before her body came crashing back down on the hard rock and she was reminded all too well of it's consequences. She gripped the hard rocks as tightly as she could so that she wouldn't fall to her death and this time, there was no water to break her fall. Even if there were, she was a good seven stories in the air.
"Rosario! Don't worry! I'll get you down!" Pippin yelled from below and hoped that her voice would reach her friend's ears.
"Hurry! I can't hold on much longer!" The helpless girl called out as she lifted one hand and sat it back down again to get a better grip on the surface.
Below, Pippin closed her eyes and slowly brought one hand above her head and the other down below, then she thrust her hands to either side and streams of wind seemed to come up from the ground and encircled her. "Oh gentle winds I call upon you, become a binding chain. Caress this form with-" She tried to finish her spell but it was cut off as another small spire shot up from the ground beside of her and knocked her down.
"Pippin? Pippin!?" Rosario was worried about her friend's condition. She saw her fall down but she couldn't tell why. The frightened girl glanced up to her trembling hands again. She knew that she couldn't hold out forever and she was already weak. It wouldn't be too long before she plummeted to her death.
'What do I do? I'll die if I fall from this height! I can't keep hanging on...' The girl grunted as she so desperately tried to hang on. 'My fingers hurt...'
Soon after, her fingers released their grip and she began to fall. The fear-stricken girl let out a high-pitched shriek as her form fell from the skies. She tried to reach another place to grip but all she touched was thin air.
In a panicked frenzy, she attempted to cling onto any available surface. Rosario's heart pounded like a steel drum as her desperate hands tried to grasp any rock that came in contact with them. Her hands and fingers were covered in blood and her hands had several deep gashes on them but the girl didn't care. As long as they could catch something then she disregarded her own pain.
Tears streamed from her green eyes when it seemed as if she had no chance for survival. She was tearing her fingers to the bone and the girl was getting no results.
'I'm going to die! I'm going to die! I don't want to die! Please...' More tears came as did more cuts.
Death had her tightly in its grip.
This would be the end of her.
Then she felt her form came into contact with a thick, cloth and metal buttons as a wisp of black carried her off. Green eyes widened in the darkness as soon as she looked up to notice that the one who had saved her was indeed the mystery figure that had shot in-between she and the other girl before. It was very dark so she couldn't make out his face but she could see the outline of his long, spiky hair and long, thin ponytail that fluttered behind him like a five inch ribbon in the wind.
'Huh? I'm not falling anymore. What's going on?' Her gaze then shifted to the figure's chest. His outfit was black in coloration and he wore many black, shiny belts around his arms and across his broad chest. "Who?" The confused girl questioned as she glanced back up at his face.
On the ground below, Pippin slowly sat up and assessed herself. She had no wounds but she rubbed her aching head. It had come into contact with the ground when she had gotten knocked out by the spire. "Ow! That hurt..." She whined, then threw her hands down wearily to their respective sides and looked straight in front of her to see the figure, holding the foreigner in his arms.
Pippin gasped in shock.
The girl didn't expect him to show up, especially at a moment like this.
To Be Continued...