Author Topic: Winter's Eden - Ep 10: Blank Canvases  (Read 4490 times)

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Winter's Eden - Ep 10: Blank Canvases
« on: September 03, 2012, 01:43:32 PM »


Episode 1: Up in the Air

Episode 2: Fury

Episode 3: The Ghost

Episode 4: The Missing Piece

Episode 5: An Evil Wall

Episode 6: The Battle

Episode 7: Voices

Episode 8: Into the Wall

Episode 9: Labyrinth

Episode 10: Blank Canvases

Welcome to my new story! Winter's Eden is a "spin-off" of sorts of my other story, Three Million Empty Words, but you don't need to read TMEW to know what's going on. I hope you like it!

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2012, 01:43:57 PM »
Episode 1: Up in the Air

Winter loved the summer. She loved the heat and the stillness of the air and the lazy way everything and everyone moved. She loved to hear the twitter of birds outside her window every morning and to wake with a gentle ray of sunlight brushing her face. But the end of summer frightened her just a little bit, because she knew it brought her just a little bit closer to winter. And she hated winter.

The irony was not lost on her.

She'd spent the summer in her friend Georgia Vick's house, which was farther from the city than her previous apartment. At first the silence had made it harder for her to go to sleep, because it made noises stand out more. She'd grown used to it over the months, though. She'd managed to snag a job as an elementary school art teacher, which would do until she could start selling her paintings again. All in all, it had gone well.

Except for the painting part. Winter had spent the entire season staring at blank canvases, trying, as if by magic, to make something appear on them. But every time she lifted a paintbrush, a bar of pastel, a pencil, anything to the white surface she froze. Terror flowed freely through her mind like ice water and she couldn't continue.



She knew what was wrong, but that didn't help. She knew that every time she tried to make something beautiful she expected Adam to show up again and ruin her life all over. It was an irrational fear. Adam had been locked up in jail for months now, and he wouldn't come to her house anymore even if he wasn't. Adam's obsession with her paintings had changed them, made her art soulless and unrecognizable, but he was gone now. His influence should be gone, too.

But Winter couldn't face the act of creating anything. It made her feel vulnerable, exposed, like a rabbit filling in its own hole. She shouldn't―she couldn't―hide in her rabbit-hole forever. But she still smelled hawks, and her instincts kept her under the ground.



Winter sighed, surveying the canvas that had stood on her easel all summer. It seemed to stare back at her reproachfully. She stuck out her tongue at it. Then she shook her head, exasperated at herself, and went inside.

Georgia's neat little cabin smelled like the sea all year 'round. Winter loved the place, especially in the summer. She had cheap, unremarkable furniture placed neatly in the small spaces that made up the house. On the walls hung tattoo designs and the evidence of Georgia's other creations, and she had a tattoo station in a corner where she sometimes attended customers.

She'd tried to convince Winter to get a tattoo, but Winter was a little frightened of having something permanently etched on her skin, something that would mark her forever. "It's possible to remove a tattoo, you know," Georgia had told her, but Winter had just smiled and declined again.

Sometimes Winter missed her apartment. She liked her bed better, and she could never cook anything in Georgia's kitchen without burning it. But it had been time to move on.

"Any luck?" asked Georgia from behind her book.



"No," said Winter. She sat across from Georgia, propping her elbows on the folding wooden table. It wobbled a little under her weight. Georgia was reading another romance novel. She never seemed to get enough of them. Winter herself preferred mysteries. She'd spent her summer reading a whole stack of them, in fact; purposefully chosen for their mindless simplicity. She'd only wanted to get away from her fears for a while.

Georgia set the book down. "Maybe the kids will inspire you. Didn't Van Gogh say it was his life's mission to be able to pain like a child?"

"That was Picasso. I don't know, maybe you're right. Picasso had artist's block sometimes, too." She rubbed her eyes. "I'm just so tired of being useless!"

"Wanna feel useful? Pick me up a quart of milk at the grocery store?" asked Georgia, smiling innocently. "Maybe a walk will clear your head."

"You're taking advantage of me," mumbled Winter, getting to her feet.

Georgia laughed. "One of these days you're going to see something and it'll just wake up the part of you that's asleep. Just like that. You'll see."

Winter walked out the door, not looking at the easel as she passed it. Ignoring it hadn't helped anymore than staring at it all day, but Georgia was right. Clearing her head would be good for her. After all, she was starting her new job next week, and she needed a fresh mind.

She breathed in the late summer air, full of the smells of sun-warmed living things. The sky was a beautiful shade of blue, the houses spread out ahead of her among clumps of trees and greenery. This might have inspired a painting once. Don't think about it, she told herself.

She passed a powder-blue house she went by every week on her way to the store, admiring the blossoms in the front yard. The door stood open, probably to catch a sea breeze.



But then she heard a scream from inside the house. Winter stopped, looking through the windows. She couldn't see anything that was going on. Hesitantly, she approached the front door, her heart pounding.

"Hello? Is everything okay? I heard a scream..."

She peered in the door. There was a firefighter standing in the middle of the living room, looking up.

"It's okay. They're bringing the truck around now. We'll have the ladder here soon," said the firefighter, seemingly at the ceiling.

Winter followed her gaze upward and nearly fainted. There, floating a couple of feet over the head of the firefighter, was the family. A man, a woman, and two boys, just... floating there.



So much for a nice, relaxing walk, thought Winter.



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Offline Ilessthan3TheSims

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2012, 01:55:00 PM »
I don't want to make a frivolous post, but yippee a new story :D How did they get up there??  :o

Offline SadieHamming

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2012, 02:07:54 PM »
Yay! Another story from you! I love it so far, your writing is really good!

Offline grimsoul

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2012, 02:16:44 PM »
I've always liked your stories and this one is starting off great.  Looking forward to finding out what's going on with the floating sims.
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Offline Spork-tastic

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2012, 03:23:38 PM »
Love it so far. Can't wait to see why the family was floating.

Offline RaiaDraconis

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2012, 03:33:08 PM »
I loved Winter from the other story, and I'm glad to see that she has her own spin-off. I'm definitely intrigued by the floating family.

Your writing style is excellent, by the way. I look forward to reading more!



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Offline Gogowars329

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2012, 05:19:04 PM »
That was beautiful. Your writing is wonderful. I hope Winter gets over her artist's block and gets those people down. I want to know how you put them there!
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Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2012, 05:44:21 PM »
I don't want to make a frivolous post, but yippee a new story :D How did they get up there??  :o

I get very excited when I start a new story, too. ;D

Yay! Another story from you! I love it so far, your writing is really good!
I've always liked your stories and this one is starting off great.  Looking forward to finding out what's going on with the floating sims.
Love it so far. Can't wait to see why the family was floating.

Thank you! ;D

I loved Winter from the other story, and I'm glad to see that she has her own spin-off. I'm definitely intrigued by the floating family.

Your writing style is excellent, by the way. I look forward to reading more!

Thank you! I love Winter, too, and I noticed a lot of other people liked her, so she earned her own spin-off. :) Besides, she didn't really work in Liam's story anymore, and I didn't want to say goodbye to her.

That was beautiful. Your writing is wonderful. I hope Winter gets over her artist's block and gets those people down. I want to know how you put them there!

Thank you! I used the moveobjects on cheat and put them on the floor above Winter's. There were no floor tiles, so you could see down. I discovered that trick while playing TMEW and decided that I'd have to do a story about floating people. ;)

Offline Sophie98

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2012, 12:22:39 PM »
I love it so far! Winter's new hair looks good. :)
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Offline JudesSims

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Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2012, 12:50:31 PM »
Good job! I'll be watching for more!

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 1: Up in the Air
« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2012, 07:51:00 PM »
I love it so far! Winter's new hair looks good. :)

Thank you! Since I had to start over in a new game file and I was in CAS anyway, I decided to give her a new look. I love that hairstyle. ;)

Good job! I'll be watching for more!

Thank you! I will try to update every Monday afternoon.

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 2: Fury
« Reply #12 on: September 10, 2012, 07:15:57 PM »
Episode 2: Fury

Winter gazed up at the floating family. The man and woman looked to be in their mid-forties, the older boy around fifteen or sixteen, and the younger boy about ten. The woman was sobbing, and the younger boy yelling his head off, his dark curls bouncing around his little frightened face. The older boy stared sullenly at the wall. Not like his whole family floating on the ceiling could interrupt a kid's moping.



Winter turned to the firefighter. "How did they get up there?"

"You think I know that?" asked the woman, looking haggard. "This is the kind of things you hear in urban legends. I never believed in ghosts before, but now, you know, who knows?" She threw up her arms in surrender.

"Are you ever going to get us down from here?" asked the man, rather irritated, it seemed.

"Yes, sir. My colleagues are about to get here with a ladder and we'll get you down," said the firefighter, visibly struggling to wipe the desperation from her face when she looked up. "Nothing to worry about."

"What if we fall?" screamed the boy. "Mommy, what if we fall?"

"You're not going to fall," said the firefighter. "Don't worry about that, little man. Just wait a few minutes longer, okay?" She turned back to Winter. "You'd better leave, lady. We're handling it."

"Good, I'm glad. Just a second."



Winter looked up at the family and said as cheerfully as she could, "Could I use your bathroom?"

"What?" asked the man furiously. "We're floating six feet above our living room floor and you want to use our bathroom? What, so you can rob us blind?"

"Don't be so rude, dear," said the woman, wiping her eyes.

"It's just that I was taking a walk and I really need to pee. My house is several minutes away." Winter gave her most innocent and winning smile.

"Of course you can use the bathroom." The woman pointed. "It's down the hall. First door on the right. Be careful; the towel rack comes off if you pull too hard."

"You don't need to tell her that," said the man. "She's going to destroy our entire house while we're stuck up here! She's probably one of those young people you see on TV, who go around trashing people's houses for fun!"

Winter went down the hallway, but didn't go to the bathroom. She didn't know what had made her want to get involved. Maybe it had something to do with dating a superhero for six months. But weird things had happened around her all her life, and she knew they never happened for no reason. Maybe it was her fault. Maybe she gave off a "world, go crazy in my proximity!" vibe. Anyway, she didn't think anyone else would be able to help, and maybe she could.

She went into the first room she found. It looked like a storage room, piled high with boxes, and she didn't find any clues there. Next she went into a somberly-furnished room that, judging by the posters of angry-looking people on the walls, belonged to the older boy. She went over to the desk and checked the drawers.



In one, she found a pile of drawings of skulls and demons and fire, some of them with snatches of lyrics written out in evil-looking lettering in the corners or around the edges.

"Scary kid," said Winter, glancing over a few of the lyrics. She replaced the drawings and let her gaze wander about the room, trying to see if she noticed anything suspicious. She didn't really know what she was looking for. Who was she kidding? She didn't know what she was doing. She should just go back into the living room, thank them for letting her use the bathroom, and go buy that milk that Georgia had asked her for...

Something about this room gave her a sense of déja vu. Then Winter noticed the holes that additional tacks had made in the wooden walls, where they'd held up more posters, and the box at the foot of the bed where someone had put some of the books. The bed had cheap sheets and blankets that didn't match the decor of the room. They must have packed away the good bedclothes. And there was another box hiding under the desk, taped off and identified as "To Give Away" in marker on the side.

Winter had moved not too long ago, so she remembered well the sensation of a half-packed house. That other room she'd walked into must have been all ready to transport to the new house. But this kid seemed to be doing a haphazard job. Maybe he didn't want to move? Well, they wouldn't move now unless someone got them down from the ceiling, that was for sure.

Not wanting to move didn't equal people floating, though. She was starting to think she might be onto something, but she didn't know what. She didn't know how these things worked. Until now, she'd run away from them instead of seeking them out. She wasn't afraid anymore, not since Liam. He'd given her that much. But she didn't understand this world. She hadn't expected to encounter it again.

She went over to the bookshelf and looked over the titles. They showed further evidence of the kid's unhappiness. A lot of pretty creepy stuff.



This couldn't be a coincidence. The older boy had looked like the only one of the family that wasn't desperate to get down. But how was he doing it? Was he doing it? How did a person go about... reversing these things? She briefly considered calling Liam, but discarded the idea. She didn't need his help, and besides she didn't want to see him.

Winter headed back into the living room. The firemen had brought in the ladder and were trying to help the family climb down, but they appeared to be stuck. The woman had started sobbing again, and the little boy had joined in.

"What are we going to do?" she heard one firefighter whisper to the other. "Should we call the Commissioner? This is getting out of hand."

"Excuse me," said Winter, approaching a woman who seemed to be in charge and tapping her on the shoulder. "I might know how to get them down."

"I told her to leave, but she went to use their bathroom or something," said the firefighter who'd been here before.

"Yes." She cleared her throat. "Listen, I'm a private investigator. I specialize in this sort of thing."

"You're a psychic or something?" asked the woman in charge.

"I knew we shouldn't have let her use our bathroom," said the man up in the ceiling.

"I'm going to need your help to contain this situation. Do you know how reverse levitation?" she asked sweetly of a fireman who seemed about to interrupt. "I need a ladder. I have to speak with the boy."

The firefighters exchanged glances and debated in whispers for a moment before ushering her over to a ladder and practically pushing her up. Obviously, they wanted this cleared up as soon as possible. They hadn't even asked for her license.

"Hello. What's your name?" she asked the boy.



"Freddie," he said sullenly.

She lowered her voice so that no one else could hear her. "You're not too happy about moving, are you?"

Freddie shrugged. "Looks like that's off anyway."

"Yeah. That's my point. Your mother and father want to take you off to a new place, and you..."

"He's not my dad," Freddie interrupted loudly. "You're not my dad." He pointed at the man. "This never would have happened when my dad was around."

"Freddie!" said his mother. "Don't you talk to him like that!"

Winter sighed. "Listen, Freddie. This isn't your step-dad's fault, and we both know that, okay?"

"What do you mean?"

"These things don't happen by themselves. You're the only one who doesn't want your family to get down. Because if you get down, then you'll move and leave behind this house, right? And you don't want to leave your old life and start over, do you?"



"My dad built this house," said Freddie. He didn't seem angry anymore. In fact, he seemed close to crying. "He built this house for us and then mom kicked him out and now they're going to sell it and we're going to go live somewhere else and I don't want to! I don't want to leave my friends and my school and my life!"

"Freddie," said his mother. "There's no room for advancement in your father's career here, we told you that!"

"He's not my father!"

"Uh, are you going to get on with your psychic powers and everything?" asked one of the firemen.

"Hush. Freddie," said Winter firmly, "You have to let your family down."

"But I'm not doing--!"

"I know you don't realize it, but you're making this happen. You're angry and upset, but this isn't helping. You need to let go of your anger, because that... it leads to the Dark Side, you know?" She was really on thin ice here. She had no idea if Freddie had even caused this, or if he could reverse it, but it was her best shot.

Freddie glanced at his mother. "I don't want to live somewhere else," he said.

"Okay. We can talk about it, okay? Maybe your father could move back in here, and you could come visit him... or... or... maybe you can live here with him, if that's what you want, okay? Just..."

"I could live here with dad?" asked Freddie. Winter noticed his head was much lower than hers now. They were all floating slowly down. She sighed in relief and climbed down the ladder after them.

When they landed, the little boy went and hugged his mother. "I was so scared, mommy!"

Winter stepped off the ladder, her knees a little wobbly. She couldn't believe she'd succeeded. The firefighters were clapping, she realized, and a few patted her on the back. The chief was shaking her head, nonplussed.



"We'll talk about it, okay, Freddie?" said Freddie's mom.

"Okay," said Freddie with resignation.

Winter slipped between the firefighters and out onto the front porch. Hopefully they wouldn't ask her to make any declarations or anything. She just wanted to get away before the press got here, and it was probably just a matter of time. But first she needed to do something urgent. She pulled out her cell phone.



Freddie's reasons were clear, but not how he'd done it. Obviously he had some sort of power. If she left him alone, now that he'd tapped into it once... who knew? They might be right back where they started a week from now, next time his parents upset him. She knew only one person she trusted with this sort of thing.

"Hello, Paul? It's Winter, your son Liam's ex-girlfriend. Could I talk to you for a second?"


Thank you for reading! ;D I'm having a lot of fun with this story, and I hope you are, too. Until next Monday!

Offline grimsoul

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 2: Fury
« Reply #13 on: September 10, 2012, 07:40:22 PM »
Great update. Just the second chapter and I'm already hooked. Never thought I would look forward to Mondays. :)
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Offline JudesSims

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Winter's Eden - Ep 2: Fury
« Reply #14 on: September 10, 2012, 08:12:19 PM »
Your stories always keep me coming back for more, Apples!

Offline DeLouche

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 2: Fury
« Reply #15 on: September 10, 2012, 08:58:00 PM »
Winter is a fantastic character, great to see her in her own story :D Bookmarking this, looking forward to reading the rest!

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 2: Fury
« Reply #16 on: September 13, 2012, 09:54:05 AM »
Great update. Just the second chapter and I'm already hooked. Never thought I would look forward to Mondays. :)

Thanks! I don't like Mondays, either. I hope I can cheer up your Mondays a little bit at least! :)

Your stories always keep me coming back for more, Apples!

Thank you! I'm happy to hear that. :)

Winter is a fantastic character, great to see her in her own story :D Bookmarking this, looking forward to reading the rest!

Winter is one of my favorite characters in these stories. She's so fun to write. :)

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 3: The Ghost
« Reply #17 on: September 17, 2012, 02:07:17 PM »
Episode 3: The Ghost

Winter took a deep breath before opening the door and walking into the classroom, trying to seem like she knew what she was doing. "Hello, everyone!"

Four small pairs of eyes latched onto her. A small group, fortunately―perfect for starting out, her friend Janie, who'd let her know about the job, had told her. But still, they were four complete little strangers who had no reason to do what she told them to, except what their parents may have taught them about the social convention of paying attention to the teacher.

"My name is Winter Mercier, and I'm your new arts teacher." She went to stand at the front of the classroom and faced the four little faces peering at her from around their easels. None of them had picked up any of the tools, not even just to look at them.

"Hi, Miss Mercier," said four voices in a monotone chorus.

"Just call me Winter," said Winter firmly. "So. How are you all today?"



"Fine."

"Okay, well, I'm glad to hear that. Um..." The little devil that had been generated inside her head from all the pedagogic material she'd gone over to prepare herself for this job hammered angrily at the inside of her skull. No awkward pauses! "I'd like to get to know you guys. This class isn't like math or English or science. This is art, and it's supposed to be fun, right?"

The kids looked at each other as if they were afraid to say that they wanted to have fun.

"Hey! Cheer up, kids! There are no tests in this class, and no grades, either. This isn't about boring old learning. This is about picking up a crayon or a pencil or a paintbrush and making something that you like. Something cool or interesting or pretty. Right?"

The kids still wouldn't answer.

"Oh, I know." Winter sighed. "I must have come into the wrong room. They told me this was the classroom, but this is actually the art exhibit! And I thought these were students, but they're actually statues! Silly me."

She walked over to a chubby red-headed girl in the front row and studied her, pretending to be looking at a piece of art, scratching her chin and going "hmm." The kids started giggling. Winter looked around, pretending to be surprised. "What was that sound? Is there someone in here with me?"

"Yes!" said a blond girl in the back.

"Oh, my goodness. You are students, after all! Will you tell me your names?"

After the initial shyness in introducing themselves, they started to loosen up talking about their favorite foods, favorite animals, favorite colors, and favorite things to do. Then Winter asked them to draw something they liked. They fell silent, confused.

"How?" asked one of the boys.

"Like this!" Winter taped a piece of paper to the wall so they could all see and started drawing lines. The kids laughed. "I'm honest, guys. Just draw. It doesn't matter if it looks like anything. Just use colors and materials you like. Try them out. It's just practice!"

A little while later they'd all started drawing different things on their own, unconcerned and uninhibited. Winter watched them, a little jealous. It was so easy to overcome their fear of the blank canvas. If only she were a girl again.



She walked down the row between the easels, peeking at the different paintings, which gave her small insights into each child. This was a good group. Their parents had probably forced them all to sign up to the class, which was why they'd been so nervous at first.



I'm off to a good start, she thought to herself happily. She walked back to the front of the classroom turned to face them again. And then she saw him.

He'd appeared there suddenly, in the few seconds she'd had her back turned to the door. She hadn't heard the door open, and by their lack of reactions, neither had the children. He was a young boy around their age, blond, with bright blue eyes and bare feet.



He wasn't just a student from another class who'd wandered in. He didn't speak. He just stared at her, or perhaps into her. She'd seen him before, years and years ago, and he'd looked exactly the same.

But it was impossible.



She'd been walking through her college campus away from Adam's dorm room. She'd just broken up with him, finally getting tired of his noxious effect on her art and on her life. Adam had been clinging to her like a parasite for years, unable to create art himself but experiencing the act of creation through her. She'd finally had enough and put an end to it.

The boy had been waiting for her in the darkened campus. He'd looked at her sadly and told her he was lost. She'd always believed then that she'd somehow seen some manifestation of Adam's muse. After all she'd seen in the last year, that no longer seemed that strange to her.

But why would he have come to her again, after all these years? Now, when she finally thought she’d gotten rid of him, even though he still haunted her mind?

Or am I just going crazy?



Thanks for reading! ;D I hope you're enjoying my story.

Offline SadieHamming

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 3: The Ghost
« Reply #18 on: September 17, 2012, 03:33:21 PM »
Wow. That kid is kinda creepy. I love how Winter interacted with her students! ;D

Offline RaiaDraconis

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 3: The Ghost
« Reply #19 on: September 18, 2012, 05:36:09 AM »
That exchange between Winter and the students was just plain awesome. She's a fantastic teacher!

But wow...that last part was a bit eerie. A specter from her past? A visual manifestation of the fact that Adam's memory still holds her back? I am certainly intrigued. :)

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 3: The Ghost
« Reply #20 on: September 24, 2012, 12:49:24 PM »
Thanks, Sadie and Raia! ;D I loved writing Winter and her students. I will post episode 4 in a little while.

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 4: The Missing Piece
« Reply #21 on: September 24, 2012, 02:57:02 PM »
Episode 4: The Missing Piece

Winter dismissed the children a few minutes early. She'd been trying to ignore the blond, barefoot apparition for over half an hour, but now she just couldn't concentrate any longer. Her head hurt and she wanted to run out with the kids, but she stayed, smiling at the children as they passed. "See you next Tuesday!"



The door closed behind the last one and Winter turned to the boy, her smile vanishing. He stared up at her with those unreal blue eyes that had so enchanted her when she'd first met Adam.

"What do you want?" she asked hoarsely.

"You're the only one who can help me, Winter," said the boy.

"Help you with what? How? What are you?"

"I'm the missing piece. I need you to help me find the whole again. I need you to teach me how to make fire."

"You told me that the last time. I didn't understand then, either. What does that mean?"



Adam the boy smiled. "That's what I never knew how to do. I never knew how to light a fire. You always knew. Your fire burned bright inside of you, and that's what drew him to you. There's nothing like the fire, Winter, when you've lived your whole life in darkness."

"I don't understand." Winter covered her face. "I don't want to have anything to do with Adam. I've left all that behind."

"Have you?"

Her hands dropped to her side and she looked around the room. The paintings of her students stood there on their easels, fresh and unique and spontaneous, the way children's paintings should be. The way her paintings hadn't been since Adam had come back. "Will it help me get better?"



"I don't know. But what you've been doing won't."

"How do you know that? Adam doesn't know how to create anything. All he does is destroy what others have done."

"I'm not the Adam you knew. I'm the part of him that's missing."

"Yeah, I'm not sure it'll work the way you think it will. I don't know how it's possible that you're... that you exist, and I can't put you back together."

"That's what you think. I'll show you, Winter. Come with me. Please."



She hesitated. But if this really could help her... she hadn't been able to push Adam out of her mind, and she would give almost anything to be finally free of him, to paint again, to not be afraid. "Just a second. I have to call my roommate and tell her I'll be home late. Exactly how late?"

"Time is irrelevant to me."

"Yeah, well, it's relevant to me. We're not all disembodied spirits." She thought about touching him to check if he was solid, but decided against it, and called Georgia.

A few minutes later they pulled up in front of the jail. Winter's hands trembled as she switched off the engine and fumbled with the handle to open the door.

They let her into the visiting area, ignoring the boy just like her students had done. The walls were white, and the white light from the bulbs in the ceiling made it look almost radioactively white. She entered her booth. On the other side of a pane of glass sat Adam.



"I was wondering when you'd show up," said Adam.

Winter laced her fingers together nervously and glanced at the boy.

"Well? Aren't you going to sit down?" Adam looked just as handsome as ever, although an ugly glower marred his face.

She sat. "How's jail?"

"Wonderful. How are the lawsuits?"

"Blissful." Winter looked at the boy.



"He doesn't see me. Tell him I'm here."

"I brought someone to see you." She indicated the boy. "This is you. In a way, I guess."

"That's very funny."

"I'm serious. Adam, this is the reason you are the way you are. The reason you can't create. Because a part of you's missing, and here it is. You can't see it, but once you do you'll be able to understand."

"Winter," said Adam, "I'm not amused by this. I've really had enough of your jokes. You're going to pay for what you've done to me, and you'll wish you'd never crossed me. You think the lawsuits are bad? I'm just getting started. Just because I'm in here doesn't mean I can't reach you. It doesn't mean I can't find you, wherever you are, no matter how far you run."



Winter closed her eyes. "I'm trying to help."

"You have to make him see," said the boy. "You're the only one who can make him see."

"I don't know how to do that!" she snapped. "How am I supposed to make him see? He doesn't want to! He's never going to listen to anything I tell him."

"Who are you talking to?" asked Adam. "My 'missing piece'?"

"You know, I tried to help you before. I put up with you for years. I was nice to you. I loved you, and all you did was suck the life from my art and take away my happiness. I'm done with this. I'm done with you. I can't do this, I'm sorry."



She stood. The boy looked up at her beseechingly. "I need you to help him see. That's the only way."

"Yeah, well, you'll have to get someone else to do that for you. Goodbye, Adam."

"How's the art class going?"

She turned back to face him, her heart hammering. "How did you know about that?"

"I told you you'd never get rid of me, Winter. And I'm not going to be in here forever. Just you wait and see."

"No. No." She gave her back to him.

"Please," said the boy.



Winter left the prison as fast as she could, hurried to find Georgia's car, climbed inside, and drove a few blocks before stopping to calm herself down. Adam couldn't reach her from inside prison. She could tell someone. Rowan, maybe, Liam's policewoman friend. Someone would stop him.

"You're the only one who can stop him," said the boy's voice from the copilot seat, startling her. He hadn't been there a moment before.

"That's ridiculous."

The boy sighed. "You'll have to believe me sooner or later. You'll see I'm right. No one can fix this except for you."

"I refuse to believe that," said Winter, restarting the car. "That's not my job."

"No. It's just your duty."


Thank you for reading me story. I hope you're enjoying it!

Offline MissPlumbBob

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 4: The Missing Piece
« Reply #22 on: September 24, 2012, 03:56:52 PM »
Your screenshots are well captured, especially in the jail scene! Keep up the good work. ;)
Check out my new story here!

Offline DeLouche

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 4: The Missing Piece
« Reply #23 on: September 24, 2012, 06:58:33 PM »
Fantastic screenshots... How did you get that lighting effect in the prison?

This is a wonderful story, I'm totally hooked :)

Offline ApplesApplesApples

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Re: Winter's Eden - Ep 4: The Missing Piece
« Reply #24 on: September 25, 2012, 02:56:21 PM »
Thanks, MissPlumbBob and DeLouche! ;D I painted everything pure white (ffffff hex code) and used bright overhead lighting. I didn't mean to get that cool effect, but it just happened. :) It made the whole thing look pretty surreal.