Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Overlord Legacy - Chapter Thirteen - A Different Life
Then she has the problem that none of the men she captured are humans. She originally intended to rule over humans first (much easier, of course), then made an exception after she learned Jakkson was a werewolf. After dragging them to the dungeon, however, along with a werewolf and a fairy, Midnight has made the dampening discovery that even Oliver is a supernatural. She has a lot more work on her hands now.
Fortunately the drugs have worked enough to keep them thoroughly unconscious for a while, as she needed the time to implant the chips into the back of their necks. She only has a limited handiness skill so they're not the most sophisticated of technology, but they're at least programmed to vibrate when she needs to summon them and inflict excruciating pain if she discovers her new minions missing.
Having had enough time to think (and tired of waiting), Midnight summons the werewolf first.
Jakkson: "...I can't...I can't believe...."
Midnight: "I know, I know, I'm startlingly beautiful and you just can't believe your eyes. But we don't have time for pleasantries now. Now that you're under my service, it's my duty to inform you of your new responsibilities and some rules. First, you'll be allowed to leave the house, but if I discover you missing for more than twelve hours, I have the power to inflict some serious pain on you. Would you like me to demonstrate?"
Midnight: "Good, you're a smart one. Secondly, you have responsibilities around the house because I don't care to spend the money to hire a maid. You're in charge of recycling the newspaper, cleaning up clothes, and doing the laundry."
Midnight: "Beautiful woman, I know. Don't worry, I recognize that you're able to do much more than laundry. That's why I want to use your skills to earn me money too. You're a werewolf, which makes you a valuable hunter. I want you to start bringing in collectibles. Rocks, gems, insects, whatever's valuable. Start cutting and smelting unique rocks and gems you find, then sell the rest."
Midnight: "Excuse me?"
Jakkson: "No. I'm not doing anything for you."
Midnight: "...Hmm. Well, that's too bad. Remember the serious pain I mentioned earlier?"
All it takes is one press of a button on a tiny remote to send Jakkson to the floor, writhing in agony. Mercifully, Midnight releases after a few seconds, waiting patiently as Jakkson staggers back to his feet.
Midnight: "Have you reconsidered?"
Midnight: "Oh, I play around lots. But not in that regard. The way I see it, you can submit willingly and we'll all be happy and pain-free, or you be stubborn and I can make you submit painfully. Either way, you'll still be doing what I want."
Jakkson: "You are pure evil. I've never met anyone as...as..."
Midnight: "Oh, don't be silly. My dad helped me think of these concepts. Trained me well, didn't he?"
Jakkson: "I never knew who your dad was."
Midnight: "Mm, I guess I would expect that. You've lived in seclusion for quite some time, haven't you?"
Midnight: "Well, it's not my job to expose you here. You keep me happy, I stay nice to you. Things work wonderfully that way."
Jakkson, feeling defeated already, follows Midnight's command and fetches Oliver. He ponders to himself: who is he to really fight back anyway? It's not as if he had much control over his life before. Living in seclusion is pure, unadulterated misery. How much more miserable could servitude really be? It's just another form of pain, exchanging one for the other.
Oliver, seeing Jakkson's expression, dreads every step as he makes his way to meet Midnight inside the castle.
Oliver: "I don't feel the need to hide them from you. With my current state of emotion, I really could care less if my fangs offend you."
Midnight: "You'll learn to care soon enough. As I was telling Jakkson, you'll be allowed to leave the house. In fact, I've heard quite good reviews about you as a stylist. I expect you to keep your job at the salon. The money, however, will be delivered straight to me."
Oliver: "And what if I don't wish to return here? Because really I don't."
Midnight: "I've implanted a device in your skin that will inflict serious pain if I discover you missing for more than twelve hours. I had to demonstrate to your werewolf friend what it felt like. Do you wish to have a personal demonstration as well?"
Oliver: "I don't, but thank you kindly for asking. Your hospitality is really too much, I must say."
Midnight: "Very well. You will also be expected to perform duties around the house. Clothing and laundry is up to Jakkson, but the rest of the cleaning is up to you. I will not tolerate smelly dishes and dirty toilets any longer. It's your responsibility to clean them."
Oliver: "I do not stoop to cleaning toilets. I have a maid for that and I highly suggest you either hire one or clean what you want cleaned yourself."
Midnight: "I hope I won't ever have to repeat myself with you. I don't want to 'accidentally' run out of plasma juice in the fridge because of your snippy attitude. Now go get me the fairy and then clean the kitchen sink. There's a nice thick layer of grime waiting for you."
Silently, Oliver leaves and gives the message to Phantom. He doesn't know how far to push the fight for his own freedom. He knows of Rufus Overlord, and if his daughter's anything like him, Oliver surely doesn't have the strength to overpower her. The reign of Emperor and Overlord has been passed onto Midnight, a title that naturally puts much power into her hands. Oliver has suppressed his vampire abilities so much that he's not sure he could tap into them to overthrow her.
Midnight tries to prepare for meeting the fairy. She doesn't even know his name, much less his personality. She's come up with some duties for him, but she has absolutely no experience dealing with such playful creatures. She wonders what she's in for.
The door flies open and Phantom zooms up to Midnight's face.
Midnight: "...Excuse me?"
Phantom: "That trick where you sneaked up on all three of us and knocked us out and then dragged us all the way here. How did you do it?"
Midnight: "And why should I tell you that?"
Phantom: "My big brothers always bullied me and called me 'baby glowworm larvae.' If I could pull that trick off on them, ooh, they'd be so sorry..."
Midnight: "...Hate to burst your bubble, but you're not going to be playing such a prank any time soon. You're staying here with me. You'll be allowed to leave sometimes, but if you're missing longer than twelve hours, I have the ability to inflict some serious pain on you."
Phantom: "Can I learn that trick too?"
Phantom: "How long do I have to do this?"
Midnight: "Potentially the rest of your life."
Phantom: "Oh. In that case, I don't want to do it."
Midnight: "You don't have a choice."
Phantom: "Why not?"
Midnight: "Because you're my servant now. Your life is going to be very different. That's just the way it's going to be."
Phantom: "Can we order a pizza and watch a movie tonight?"
Midnight: "Wha--?! No!! It's your job to cook and there's no movies!"
Phantom: "Do you like to play tag?"
Midnight: "No! What kind of childish--"
Phantom: "When are you gonna show me that trick where you sneak up on people and knock them out?"
Phantom: "Whoa...don't look now, but I think there's a swarm of ladybugs on your head."
Midnight: "It's a hair decoration, you idiot!"
Phantom: "My brothers once tried to put ladybugs in my hair, but they squished them and you know they get all stinky, and my hair reeked for weeks, and Mama Pixie wouldn't even listen to my side of the--"
Midnight: "GET....just get out of my sight. Find some seeds and start gardening before I rip your wings out and drown you in a bucket of chicken fat."
In a huff, Midnight changes clothes to get ready for her interview for the military career. Sure, she could just walk in and demand they hire her lest they get wiped off the map, but she decides to be a little more classy.
She has a lot to think about though. She's asserted her dominance and she has the pain device on her side, but she can already tell dealing with three supernaturals in the house is going to be an annoyance. Why did she not just knock out the fairy and leave him on the side of the road? In fact, why didn't she throw him in front of a car or something?
After adjusting the dryer settings and turning it on, Jakkson heads back upstairs and finds Oliver in the kitchen, mopping up a puddle on the floor.
Oliver: "Midnight told me you're a werewolf..."
Jakkson: "...She's right. I guess there's no use hiding it at this point. She expects me to go out and hunt for valuable items, which I can only really do effectively in my wolf form."
Oliver: "That explains your clothes."
Jakkson: "Yes...I don't bother changing them anymore. They just get torn up anyway."
Jakkson: "...I don't care if you judge me. I am what I am and there's nothing I can do about it, as much as I want to."
Oliver: "I'm not in a position to judge you. See?"
Oliver: "Sorry. I've gotten used to making faces while showing them."
Oliver: "You know that girl, Bailey Swain, in town?"
Oliver: "Ah, right, you hardly know anyone. She's this really awkward young lady who discovered I was a vampire and seems to come into the salon every day to ask for a makeover from me. She won't quit nibbling on her lip or calling me Edward. I...have to stoop to making faces just to get her to go away."
Jakkson swallows. He's never transformed in front of people before - he's always made sure to escape somewhere so no one will see him. How will people react when they see him in werewolf form out in the open? ...Will they even know who he is, after secluding himself for so long?
Regardless, he can't refuse. The electrocuting pain he felt in his neck earlier was too excruciating to bear repeating. Taking a deep breath, then another, he lets out a howl and lets the beast come out.
Oliver decides to wait until tomorrow to begin returning to the salon. His nerves are too shaken to return just yet. Trying to steady his hands, he sketches some fashion designs he's researched.
To get his mind off the pain and swelling, Phantom begins working on making autumn salad for dinner. Mama Pixie always did the cooking back at the fairy house. Anytime Phantom tried to help, she'd smack away his hands. His only job used to be just washing the table after dinner was done, but after he lit the washrag on fire and attempted to throw it into the water in the sink for fun (and sorely missed, nearly burning down the fairy house), even that was taken away from him.
As he finishes making his first dinner without destroying anything, Phantom smiles. Maybe he'll be of use here. Maybe he'll be a good fit. Perhaps he'll grow a wonderful garden that Mama Pixie would be proud of.
This new life could be kind of cool!
Author's note: I had to find a way of including the picture of Oliver showing his teeth. It's so out of character for him, but I couldn't stop laughing at it.
Emphasizing everyone's personalities is quite fun and hopefully I'm representing everyone well. Midnight is Evil and Insane, so I kind of had to make her a different "form" of evil than what Rufus was, but on the other hand, I didn't want to make her entirely merciless. She has some ability to show grace. And I just had to build upon Phantom's personality. I love writing more serious roles for Oliver and Jakkson, but I feel like I have to balance such serious roles with the goofy childish humor of Phantom.
Feel free to leave a comment! This second generation should have a slightly different feel, but I'm very excited to play through it all the same!