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Chapter 6 The Milky Palace

by ThekingsAdvisor


The stone-paved road was covered in thorns, overlapping in a zigzag pattern. On both sides, lines of roses created a border between Edward and the encompassing darkness. Edward stood in the middle of the road, trying to move his arm, but it was stuck to his body like a brick. His feet, however, moved on their own, stepping on the thorns. Blood gushed from his feet with each step, leaving a trail as he walked. His face became pale from the blood loss, and to his shock, he realized he was moving towards a black mist, the same mist that surrounded him on the left and right.

In just a few steps, he was in front of the mist, his legs now unmoving. Edward heard laughter coming from the mist, a slow, gurgling laugh that sounded as if the person laughing was choking on something. The laughter grew louder and closer. Edward braced himself, knowing what was to come.

Amidst the black fog emerged a human head. Blood flowed from its eyeless sockets and throat. It was his father's head, submerged in dirt and dried blood. His golden hair was knotted in a messy fashion, with locks overlapping and sticking together. The blood falling from his throat echoed through the place. His father's face bore an ecstatic look, one of excitement and euphoria. Edward's face showed no emotion as he stared at his father, but inside, guilt flooded his mind. He breathed slowly in and out. _Calm down, it's a nightmare,_ he reminded himself.

Slowly, his father's face and the darkness dissipated like smoke, and Edward awoke. His head was covered in sweat as he frantically looked around the dark room. He got up from his bed and, with a snap, lit all the candles in the room. He noticed the tobacco holder on a podium in the corner of his room.

He shuffled to it and picked it up, trying to smoke from the long part but realizing it wasn't lit. Again, he snapped his fingers, lighting the holder. He slowly inhaled the tobacco and released the smoke in a relaxed manner. The smoke clung to the ceiling as if stuck. The more he smoked, the more relaxed he felt. After just five inhalations, Edward felt as if his body was floating in the sky, with all his guilt and fear washing away.

He felt _clean,_ as if he had taken a shower. After some time, Edward tried to inhale again, but the tobacco was finished. He attempted to inhale again and again to no avail. In a fit of rage, he threw the tobacco holder at the wall and cried out.

Abruptly, the main door to the Light's bedroom opened, and five maids entered. One of them picked up the tobacco holder and refilled it. Edward grabbed the holder from her hand and started to smoke again. His angry face was replaced with euphoria. "Uh, you have done your job wonderfully. Now tell me what you saw." The maids shook their heads, indicating they saw nothing. "Uh, now tell me what you heard." The maids shook their heads again, indicating they heard nothing. They closed their eyes and looked at the ground, waiting for orders.

A giant smile plastered on Edward's face as he exited the room and entered the hallway.

The hallway sprawled in front of him as he walked. Paintings covered both sides, depicting historical events that the Lights had caused, from the ending of the Great Chaos to the start of the Year of Light. Edward kept inhaling as he walked.

After a short walk, Edward entered the royal dining room. The room was filled with the scents of meat and herbs, the aroma tingling his nose with hints of spice and citrus. He averted his eyes from the grand table in the middle of the room to the maids carrying the food inside. Each carried the food delicately and elegantly. Some hands trembled while others were as firm as bricks.

Edward sat at one of the tables surrounding the grand table and began eating. He started with the delicate and spicy meat of wild sheep, followed by the juicy meat of wild cow. He ate elegantly, his expression revealing neither happiness nor displeasure. His hand moved from one plate to another.

Upon seeing the Light eating, the maids left the room, shuffling behind each other like ants. Before leaving, they closed the door. Edward's face changed, his cold stare replaced with a soft expression filled with guilt and sadness. Since the day of the ritual, he had been in a constant tug-of-war with his emotions. He tried to balance his mood with the addictive feeling of tobacco, replacing guilt with euphoria and happiness with sadness. But he realized he had trapped himself in an addiction. His hand shook as he restrained himself from taking another puff.

From the corner of his eye, he noticed a menacing figure behind him. Edward looked back but found no one. Then he looked at the tobacco holder again; it looked tempting. His hand shook as he restrained himself and finished his meal.

After finishing the dishes, he clapped his hands. The maids reentered and began cleaning. Edward got up and walked out of the room.

The tobacco holder faced the ground as he walked, bits of tobacco falling on the carpet. Maids cleaned the tobacco off the floor. Edward watched one maid whose hands shook as she cleaned. Anger rose inside him, though he didn't know why. His abdomen felt like it was exploding. His left hand shook. _I want to see her head pop,_ Edward thought.

Edward's golden eyes now contained a trace of madness as he observed the girl leaving the hall. _I want to strangle her,_ he thought. Slowly, Edward was spiraling into madness, his right hand violently shaking as it held the tobacco holder. More bits of tobacco fell on the carpet.

-Slap-

Edward slapped himself, and the trace of madness disappeared from his eyes. He looked at the ground, quickly inhaling the tobacco. Again, the sense of euphoria rushed into his veins. He felt as if he was floating above the clouds, with nothing concerning him.

Edward returned to his room. Inside, a group of maids dressed in gold awaited him. They stood with palms on top of each other, their eyes covered by cloth. When Edward entered, they surrounded him and began to undress him. One of the maids delicately held the tobacco holder.

Once undressed, another group of maids entered with new clothes: a golden tunic and a long robe, white on the inside and gold on the outside. Memories of his father wearing the same robe flooded Edward's mind. A frown appeared as he looked sadly at the cloth, his eyes fixed on the emblem on the robe.

The maids dressed him, starting with the pants and then the robe. Edward felt the warmth of the robe wash over him, as if his father was patting his shoulders. He then picked up his tobacco holder and left the room.

Soon, he stood in front of the door leading to the discussion hall. He cleared his expression, putting on a fake cold look, and entered.


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Thu Jun 27, 2024 10:22 pm
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EllieMae wrote a review...



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Hello friend! Ellie here to leave a review for this lovely piece of yours! Let's jump right in:

Amidst the black fog emerged a human head. Blood flowed from its eyeless sockets and throat. It was his father's head, submerged in dirt and dried blood. His golden hair was knotted in a messy fashion, with locks overlapping and sticking together. The blood falling from his throat echoed through the place. His father's face bore an ecstatic look, one of excitement and euphoria. Edward's face showed no emotion as he stared at his father, but inside, guilt flooded his mind. He breathed slowly in and out. _Calm down, it's a nightmare,_ he reminded himself.


Okay first of all, I noticed that you use _ multiple times throughout this chapter in different places. What was that used for? I just don't understand it it means or represents something or it is was a type :) Okay but besides that, you do a wonderful job with visual descriptive words such as 'eyeless sockets' and many more. Awesome work on this!!! ^^

Edward's golden eyes now contained a trace of madness as he observed the girl leaving the hall. _I want to strangle her,_ he thought. Slowly, Edward was spiraling into madness, his right hand violently shaking as it held the tobacco holder. More bits of tobacco fell on the carpet.

-Slap-


I LOVE THE -SLAP-! Personally, I would write it as... well...

Edward slapped himself, and the trace of madness disappeared from his eyes.


How you wrote it on the next sentence. Having the visual of the leap be by itself feels more like a script or screenplay or something like that, which I don't think this is. It was funny like that, but the way you describe the slap ion the next senetence was wonderfully detailed. But besides that (my opinion) I really like how you apply these visual aspects to your writing. It is unique and exciting to read!

Overall, wonderful work and keep writing! Looking forward to getting to read and review more soon.

Your friend,
Ellie

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Tue Jun 25, 2024 5:56 pm
RavenAkuma wrote a review...



Hello Again, My Friend!

It's been some time! It's great to see this story get an update though. It's me, Raven, and I'd like to review the next chapter in this great story using my Familiar method! Let's dive in, shall we? Heh heh heh...

What The Black Eyes See...

Alright, so we're back in the perspective of Edward! It sounds like the heavy burden of guilt I remember from this character has come back with a vengeance, forcing a nasty new habit that comes with risk. Let's get into the details though.

Where The Dagger Points...

Not much to put here! I only wanted mention that the use of underscoring to mark where thoughts start (_insert thought here_) was a bit of an odd choice compared to the traditional italics (insert thought here) or more rarely single quotation marks ('insert thought here'). But it is a subjective formatting choice and you won't see me complaining. Good writing job ~

Why The Grin Widened...

I like that you gave us another chapter from the perspective from Edward, since we haven't heard much about him since the Prologue (unless I'm forgetting something sorry if so). The staging of his nightmare was awesome, from the thorny path to the wake of blood. And with this...

Amidst the black fog emerged a human head. Blood flowed from its eyeless sockets and throat. It was his father's head, submerged in dirt and dried blood.


Oof -that and the staging added a neat touch of horror to the story! And it's obvious that Edward still feels a strong sense of guilt for what he's done. I wonder where it will lead him...

A giant smile plastered on Edward's face as he exited the room and entered the hallway.


Ooo, an interesting twist of emotions after hitting the pipe hard. It felt like there was a patronizing, maybe even intimidating tone he took with those maids, and followed by this smile, it paints a somber picture for a wonderfully flawed character, hiding his grief and guilt under a tobacco-induced haze ~

Your descriptions were very nice and I loved the sensory notes, as well as the fine details that helped build the overall mood among the characters. Like how some of the maids' hands were shaking. By purpose or not, it sounds like they are intimidated by Edward and it's hard not to empathize with their position.

But he realized he had trapped himself in an addiction. His hand shook as he restrained himself from taking another puff.


And sure enough...The fact that he is cognizant of this and even tries to limit himself is an encouraging sign that he may pull through, maybe knowing that he's less stable due to this substance. Either way, as far as writing goes, it builds an amazing foundation for his character. This is a very human quality albeit a sad one, and -again- it's easy to not only empathize with this character, but understand some of the struggles they're facing to a certain degree. It's a great way to get us hooked on their story and eager to read more.

Anger rose inside him, though he didn't know why. His abdomen felt like it was exploding. His left hand shook. _I want to see her head pop,_ Edward thought.


Oh man, brutal...This shows why they're all so afraid, and one of the risks associated with Edward's struggle. Immediately builds a sense of anticipation and anxiety.

I like the sense of comfort you described in the robe and its link to his father. Nice character moment.

Soon, he stood in front of the door leading to the discussion hall. He cleared his expression, putting on a fake cold look, and entered.


Ooo, I wonder what's going on here!

Our Mad Thoughts...

Overall, that was a great chapter to give us more content on Edward! The writing quality was great and I loved the revelations provided here. Nicely done! :D

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What's the point of being a grown-up if you can't be a bit childish sometimes?
— 4th Doctor