Writing Group: The Last Song We Sing

Hellooo Musicians, Soloists and Choir Members! 

I hope you’ve all sufficiently warmed up your voices. We have an important performance to put on tonight! Because…

This week’s Writing Group prompt is:

The Last Song We Sing

Make sure you scroll down and read them if you haven’t! You may not be eligible if you don’t!

This is a prompt filled with poetic melancholy. It’s the idea of an end of sorts, but an end that comes with a song—going out with a bang, or a roar, or with gentle warble. 

The first thing that comes to mind for me is a literal take on the prompt—the last song before someone’s death. You could write about a funeral march. A singer might be sick, and want to put on one last show before they die. Or perhaps loved ones sing to a sick person on their death bed. Perhaps someone doesn’t realize it’ll be the last song they sing before they get into an accident. Or maybe death is not so melancholy— warriors might sing before or during battle, ready to go to Valhalla. Maybe a group of rebels know they’re going on a suicide mission, and they sing together on their last night; they are helping their cause tomorrow…at the price of their lives. I also think of movies like Captain America or Star Trek (2012), where someone has to sacrifice themselves so that others might live—in both situations the character sacrificing themselves could have sang a final song with the person on the comms. Maybe you could write about a mythical creature, and their customs around song—maybe sirens have a way of serenading their dead that is both haunting and harmonious. 

There are other kinds of tragedies you may want to use this prompt for. Perhaps someone is developing polyps on their vocal chords and wants to sing one last song before they lose their voice. I could see a story like Ariel’s being told with this prompt—someone giving up their voice, and singing a last song, their very notes captured and taken away. 

Or maybe you want to go bittersweet with it. You could write about a high school choir singing at their own graduation before going their separate ways; the choir might get new members, but this is the last song the seniors will sing. Perhaps a party of adventurers is splitting up and they sing one last song around the fire before they start a new chapter of their lives. 

Or maybe you don’t want to add anything bitter in your story—just the sweet part. It all hinges on what the word “last” refers to. Because “last” could simply be the last song in a concert or show. The last song a band or bard sings on tour before going back home. The last song a group of friends sings at a bar before going home for the night. It could be the last song before a new beginning. Perhaps someone is going to change—whether in a way that is mental or physical, or simply changing their stage name—and they sing one last song as their previous self. Or else they may be revealing a truth about themselves to the world through their last song before it’s revealed. Maybe a couple sings a song that doubles as a proposal—their last song before they are married. You could even use this in a “one more level” sort of way; maybe your character says “Okay, but this is the LAST song we sing” …but they keep going for hours on end. 

You could also use this in a symbolic way. The last story an author writes, the last art piece a painter makes, things like that could symbolically function as a last song. Even something like the last game in a tabletop roleplaying campaign could be the last song, so to speak. However, if you go this direction, I will warn you to make sure the prompt is still clear within your story! 

You may have noticed that, for my challenges, I like to find the direction in which I think people’s brains will most likely go with the prompt, and challenge you to go the opposite direction. This prompt is no different. I think the most natural trajectory of this prompt is to think of death, and general melancholy. My challenge is for you to make this prompt about something other than death, and/or something that isn’t melancholy. 

My other challenge for you is the same as one we had a while back: pick a real song and use it somehow in your story—be it that the characters are singing that song in the story, or simply that you listen to it while you write and let its rhythms influence you, even if it’s not directly mentioned. (Feel free to share these in generalchat-media!)

Remember, these challenges aren’t mandatory! They are meant to be a fun bonus if you’d like to have a little extra challenge. But, if you don’t want to use them, please don’t feel obligated to!

The curtains are about to open, everyone! Take a deep breath, and don’t forget the lyrics. We’ve practiced this hundreds of times! I know you’ve got this.  


Remember, this is part of our weekly Writing Group stream! Submit a little piece following the rules and guidelines below, and there’s a chance your entry will be read live on stream! In addition, we’ll discuss it for a minute and give you some feedback.

Tune into the stream this Saturday at 3:00pm CST to see if you made the cut!

The whole purpose of this is to show off the creativity of the community, while also helping each other to become better writers. Lean into that spirit! Get ready not just to share what you’ve got, but to give back to the other writers here as well.

Rules and Guidelines

We read at least five stories during each stream, two of which come from the public post, and three of which come from the much smaller private post. Submissions are randomly selected by a bot, but likes on your post will improve your chances of selection, so be sure to share your submission on social media!

  1. Text and Formatting

    1. English only.
    2. Prose only, no poetry or lyrics.
    3. Use proper spelling, grammar, and syntax.
    4. Your piece must be between 250-350 words (you can use this website to see your wordcount).
    5. Use two paragraph breaks between each paragraph so that they have a proper space between them (press “enter” or “return” twice).
    6. Include a submission title and an author name (doesn’t have to be your real name). Do not include any additional symbols or flourishes in this part of your submission. Format them exactly as you see in this example, or your submission may not be eligible: Example Submission.
    7. No additional text styling (such as italics or bold text). Do not use asterisks, hyphens, or any other symbol to indicate whether text should be bold, italic, or styled in any other way. CAPS are okay, though.
  2. What to Submit

    1. Keep submissions “safe-for-work”; be sparing with sexuality, violence, and profanity.
    2. Try to focus on making your submission a single meaningful moment rather than an entire story.
    3. Write something brand new; no re-submitting past entries or pieces written for other purposes
    4. No fan fiction whatsoever. Take inspiration from whatever you’d like, but be transformative and creative with it. By submitting, you also agree that your piece does not infringe on any existing copyrights or trademarks, and you have full license to use it.
    5. Submissions must be self-contained (everything essential to understanding the piece is contained within the context of the piece itself—no mandatory reading outside the piece required. e.g., if you want to write two different pieces in the same setting or larger narrative, you cannot rely on information from one piece to fill in for the other—they must both give that context independently).
  3. Submission Rules

    1. One submission per participant.
    2. Submit your entry in a comment on this post.
    3. Submissions close at 12:00pm CST each Friday.
    4. You must like and leave a review on two other submissions to be eligible. Your reviews must be at least 50 words long, and must be left directly on the submission you are reviewing, not on another comment. If you’re submitting to the private post, feel free to leave these reviews on either the private or the public post. The two submissions you like need not be the same as the submissions you review.
    5. Be constructive and uplifting. These submissions are not for a professional market, and shouldn’t be treated as such. We do this, first and foremost, for the joy of the craft. Help other writers to feel like their work is valuable, and be considerate and gentle with critique when you offer it. Authors who leave particularly abrasive or disheartening remarks on this post will be disqualified from selection for readings.
    6. Use the same e-mail for your posts, reviews, and likes, or you may be rendered ineligible (you may change your username or author name between posts without problem, however).
    7. You may submit to either or both the public/private groups if you have access, but if you decide to submit to both, only the private group submission will be eligible.
    8. Understand that by submitting here, you are giving us permission to read your submission aloud live on stream and upload public, archived recordings of said stream to our social media platforms. You will always be credited, but only by the author name you supply as per these rules. No other links or attributions are guaranteed.

Comments on this post that aren’t submissions will be deleted, except for replies/reviews left on existing submissions.

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3 months ago

Or Maybe Not (Chronicles of The Dragon)
By Makokam

Spiked hair dyed red and gold, the top to his black biker leathers flapping open to reveal an orange tank top, Maddox pulled his motorcycle up in front of the nightclub. People were just starting to be let in, so the line was long.

He waved at the club goers, who screamed and cheered, as he entered.

When he reached the green room, one of his band-mates yelled, “You’re late! Thought you were ditching us early.”

“What? No way would I miss my last show with you!”

“So you’re really going through with it? Shipping off to become a ‘big time superhero’?”

“Hell yeah!” he said, his body igniting into flame, “Why would I deny my full potential?” The flames flickered out and he said, “The only real question is who you’ll get as the new singer.”

“I still say I could be the singer,” another said.

Maddox looked at her, then shrugged. “Maybe. A chick singer could help you stand out.”

Their manager came in then telling them, “Time to hit the stage.”

They moved out and took their positions, to a roar of excitement.

They started with an “old classic”, one they’re long term fans knew and loved. Then they moved on to their new songs, “their latest album” Maddox would call it, though they’d only been able to afford to make a couple hundred CDs. Then they ended with some of the favorites from their last “album”.

None of them had discussed it, but they each poured more into the night’s performance than they had ever before, Maddox singing his throat raw.

Eventually, after three encores, the night came to an end. They bowed, and took their leave. Maddox took the longest, shaking hands and hitting high fives with the people at the front. Cheering back and blowing kisses before finally stepping off the stage.

The band waited form him, sad but proud, before returning to their dressing rooms, only to find a man waiting for them.

“I’m with Platinum Dragoon Records, and we’d like to offer you a contract.”

3 months ago

Quantum Melody.

by Galer.

“So ever since we talked with you, people are singing and manipulating things via unknown methods,” Alfonso said, his lab coat a bit stained with coffee from the lab. “I knew that magic existed ever since time immemorial, but dominating frequencies so exotic that everything shifts into a quantum state is just plain bizarre”

The being in front of Alfonso was made out of string. It started shifting from a humanoid form to several shapes, the string that composed their body changing to match words Alfonsod could understand.

“So you are saying everything is made out of strings down to the smallest essence right Aia?” Alfonso asked The Vetan, ” And when you synchronize your vibration with that frequency you can be manipulated then?”

Aia shifted back into humanoid form, nodding with her head that was both flat and tridimensional.

“Can I hear it?” Alfonso asked, curious about the melody.

Aia started vibrating and her body was touching something unseen, something was in sync with all matter in the world, and then after a long hum, he heard it.

It was a unique melody like everything suddenly made sense and at the same time didn’t, he also saw several things around him in different states of existence, rock melting into puddles of stars, stars turning into singing iron planetoids.

It was a grotesque and beautiful melody. All that chaos worked harmoniously to create a unique frequency that Alfonso couldn’t help but listen to.

A song that was an ode to existence itself, one that was going on and on, self-perpetuating itself across the void, everything living and non-living adding to its chorus.

Aia then stopped vibrating letting the infinite song stop.

However, Alfonso could still hear it.

“Wow. That was an experience alright, no wonder everyone sings it,” Alfonso said, amazed in awe at the melody. “Just one question: why did you teach it?”

Aia nervously shaped her body, telling the truth.

Alfonso just gave her a face that changed into an amused grin. “You were just bored?”

Just a typical day in the lab as always.

3 months ago

The Origamicron Part 3: Your Last Song

By Joe

Dan, Tom, Alyx and Posh set a trap in the living room and waited for their target to come.

“So what’re we catching again?” asked Dan.

“A Nugboratu,” Posh said abrasively. “It’s as deaf as you, so we don’t have to worry about it hearing your banter. But it can see really well, which is why I used Concealed Parchment so we can sit behind this couch undetected.”

Dan tried to look past Posh’s tone. “Okay, and the bait?”

“Sugar. It has a sweet tooth.”

“What’s stopping it from attacking a convenience store?”

“It sees better than your comprehension, so it it’ll stay away from light. I even left the front door open so it can smell it better. And since it’s made especially by me it can’t resist its pure pungency.”

“Alyx,” Dan said calmly. “Can you tell your friend to adjust his attitude before I pull out the milk?”

“Friend is a strong word,” Alyx grumbled. “We’re rivals, without my consent by the way. Now both of you pipe down! It may be able to hear you, but I can.”

Time passed, so Dan and Tom traded banter while waiting.

“Alright, I got one,” Tom started. “If we knew the world would die soon what song would you play?”

“Come, Sweet Death.”

“The song from Neon Genesis Evangelion!? Jesus!”

“What? The world’s falling apart and I want people to feel sad about it. It’s not irrational.”

“True, but…wow!”

“Well what about you?”

“I don’t have one.”


“Yeah. I don’t know a song that encapsulates the world ending. I wouldn’t know what a song like that would say. There would probably be more questions and speculation than answers, which I’d weirdly be okay with. That and it depends on how I feel at the time. Will I be happy that our responsibilities are over, or will I be sad that the adventure has ended? Could it be both?”

Dan, Alyx and Posh looked at Tom with great concern.

“Humans are depressing,” Posh stated.

SNAP. The trap went off.

“We caught it! Get your bats!”

Norman Gray
Norman Gray
3 months ago

A Song Where A Mountain Once Stood
By Norman Gray (repost from private)

There is a rocky hill somewhere out in the Barrens… I’d treaded it as a boy, when my family escaped across the wasteland.

Standing in the scorching desert heat, the Barrens are just as vast as I’d remembered them. Though we’d fled from war, I am amazed that I ever managed to cross these sands…

I wonder how I’ll ever find what I’m searching for.

“His voice had the power to crumble mountains,” father had told me, “or so the legend goes… He made songs so timeless that they needed not be written, for time itself would make exception; his words were carried on the breeze, their echoes reverberating forevermore… Some say he sang his final song for a mad king who lived beneath the mountain, and that if you put your ear to this hill and listen closely, you can still hear whispers of Tom Flint’s last ballad.”

I’ve recounted my story throughout the years. Many dismissed it as a young boy’s imagination getting the better of him… But I swear upon my father’s soul, that when I pressed my ear to the ground that day, I heard singing.

Perhaps it was his intent to distract me from the hardship of our journey, but father’s story never left me, nor did my fascination with song.

Some say it’s a tall tale; that in truth a mining town lived there, and in their insatiable greed they tunneled so far and so deep that the whole mountain was hollowed out and destroyed…

But those who know the story all agree: There’d been a mountain there, once… And one day, as slowly as the snow falls on a windless winter night, that mountain had crumbled.

I close my eyes, and listen to the breeze. I press an ear to the ground…


If I don’t find Tom Flint’s last ballad, then I’ll tell of my journey, and sing of a song lost beneath the rocks, buried forevermore…

But I have to keep looking. My life was shaped by father’s tale… I must know the truth.

I must hear that melody once more.

R J Chapman
R J Chapman
3 months ago

“The Tune Will Come To You At Last” by R J Chapman

Dust glittered in the glimmer of light. Alquist remained in shadow, watching.

‘Parker, what do you see?’

‘Where, sir?’

‘In the light,’ Alquist pointed, grimacing at the movement.

‘I see the full spectrum of colours. Minute particles of dead skin and matter not usually visible, now are,’ Parker answered.

‘That’s all?’

‘Yes. What do you see?’ Parker asked, intrigued.


‘I am detecting no signs of life, except you of course, sir.’


The pair stayed silent for a while: Alquist hypnotised by the light; Parker staring at Alquist. Only when the light faded, did they begin to speak again.

‘Have you been listening to those songs I gave you?’

‘Yes, sir.’

‘Did you like them?’

‘I did not understand them.’

‘You’re not supposed to understand music; you’re supposed to feel it.’

‘There was one that interested me.’

‘It’s a start. Which one?’

‘Stairway to Heaven.’

‘Ironic,’ Alquist chuckled, stifling a cough. ‘Why?’

‘I do not know.’

‘Did it make you wonder?’ Alquist smirked.

‘Yes,’ answered Parker, oblivious to the pun. ‘What is it about?’

‘I’m not sure anybody knows…knew,’ he corrected himself. ‘Life I suppose. Our desires. Our failings. Our hopes. Our choices. The futility in all of those things. The importance of them. If that makes any sense to you?’

‘It does not.’

‘Answers are overrated. Just ask the questions.’

‘Who will I ask those questions to, when you have gone?’

‘God. The Universe. Yourself. There’s no one else.’

‘I do not understand. I do not want you to die.’

‘Want? It’s our desires that make us human,’ Alquist smiled.

‘You will be dead by tomorrow. You are the last human. Wanting this serves no purpose.’

‘I believe I mentioned futility,’ said Alquist. The smooth porcelain of Parker’s face did not move. ‘Never mind. Keep listening to it.’

Alquist died that night. Parker buried him immediately, before retreating back inside where he waited for the dawn. Stairway to Heaven played repeatedly. On the 42nd listen, just as the rising sun broke through the curtain, Parker experienced a strange sensation, yet his diagnostics detected no fault. His foot was tapping.

Last edited 3 months ago by R J Chapman
Aidan Noon
Aidan Noon
3 months ago

Ode to The Catcher

By: Aidan Noon

Cilian Moore had always been a child of the sea. Every day he’d bring home something from the catch. Either that be nets of fish, bagful of shells, or any other piece of treasure he snagged. The Catcher, we would call him.

But that’s in the past now. Old age had finally caught up to him. His trips to the sea have become shorter and fewer in-between. Even with his body failing him, he insisted on having one last voyage. And one last voyage, he did get.

On the shore, in a pub as old as time, three fishermen convene with one another.
“The Catcher’s been out for days, and yet he hasn’t returned.” Murmured the youngest and least experienced of the three.

“I’m sure everyone heard at this point.” Replied the older one with a few notches in his belt. “There was a unexpected storm that rocked a few boats off the coast. The old fella was probably amongst them.”

The oldest and most experienced one sighed. “If I were to guess, he may be one with the sea now.” There was silence between them, with the occasional sipping of a drink or coughing of the mouth.

Until the youngest one, with sadness in his voice, suggested, “Let’s sing a song to the fallen. How about one of his favorites?”
The other two agreed; and soon, with the youngest leading the chorus, the three men sang with drunken vigor. Shoals of Herring; The Catcher’s song.

A song fitting for a man who has devoted his life to sailing the harsh waters. From a young boy learning the scraps of navigation, to a old man who has earned the gear on his back.

May the ocean treat ya lightly, Cilian Moore, son of the sea. And may you be blessed with all the sea shells and fish nets in the world. Cheers.

Lee Strangely
Lee Strangely
3 months ago

Dead Man’s Afterparty (Life of Madness)
by Lee Strangely

Cold, muddy, and downright exhausted, Shiloh was something close to miserable. He dragged his feet all the way back to the car.

On the other side of the window, Maddy eagerly waiting while fending off her boredom: … by serenading the cabin like a warped jukebox…

“Waiting for another sol-lution to arrive,” she sang, “goin’ to a party where no one’s still alive!”

Shiloh, still a bit dazed, stopped just at the door as he listened in bewilderment.

“Dad was struck by lightning, restin’ down six-feet deep. He was zapped with something that was SUPPOSED to wake him from his sleep!”

Maddy eventually caught sight of Shiloh and promptly stopped to greet him, “Hi Shiloh!”

“What’re you singing?” he panted.

“Dead Man’s Party.”

Shiloh raised an eyebrow, “I don’t think those were the lyrics to Dead Man’s Party…”

“It was some of them.”


“So, have you found him?” she asked.

Shiloh tensed, “Y-your dad?”

“Yeah…” Maddy looked at him, “didn’t you find his spirit?”

Shiloh fidgeted around his eyes unable to keep focus on her, “S-sort of…He’s uh… been judged…”

“Judged? Eh, big whoop. I can raise the dead; you can talk to them; I think between you and I we can fix that right up.”

“No, no you don’t understand…” Shiloh paused trying to think of how to best explain, “The souls that that you and I see and interact with are awaiting judgement. When they are judged… they are gone. They go up there, or down there, but they don’t stay here.”

Maddy froze. Her life was a ticking clock. Her father’s death triggered it. In her mind there was a specter looming, with her father’s return standing between them… But now, that specter suddenly felt much, much closer. Almost instinctually, she hid her fearful expressions.

“I’m sorry I-” Shiloh caught himself before he could finish. He felt a knot in his stomach as he recalled those words. Looking up at Maddy as she looked away, those knots seemed to get tighter.

As Shiloh contemplated his next words, his subconscious screamed, “Not again! Please not again!”

Ethan Jesse
Ethan Jesse
3 months ago

An Epic by the Line
By Ethan Jesse

It’s without question that the lives of men are short and poorly-lived. With the knowledge of the stars above, tales of champions and prodigies from long since, I see in myself but a young boy, and the fear that I may remain ever so. So, too, do I realize that my fellow men are of my own flesh. To that extent, not another week nor a century would bless me with new eyes to gaze upon the land, for if all men grow from children, then children they shall remain.

This is not a thought any science would agree with. In my early years, I was soft, with fickle bones and no lasting thought. Time passed, and I learned speech, such that a refraction of my thoughts may be presented to the world as fact. It’d be a while before I entered my “new” era, before I could look to that man and see not some boy, but my own eyes. But then, it’s been some time since that threshold. Hours and weeks and years beyond count, and I am still that boy who speaks and knows fear. If I look to tomorrow, I imagine only myself – Not some stranger or sage, but myself, alone.

I look to my kin to see the roles they may fill. My parents were the center of a world I could have held. My comrades, the worlds I should have. But even now, I know that it’s wrong to say I “see”. As I said, no science agrees. They are as they are, children and adults. They are men all the same, with only their scars to tell old tales. I’m left to envy the dragon, who wields wisdom beyond time. Or perhaps the Luna moth, with but a week to sing a final song…I know not who I am, nor what I was, nor who I’ll be. I know not what I could, nor ever what I should. I know nothing beyond time, beyond ponders, beyond life. I know only great fear, and maybe something more.

3 months ago

“A Lullaby” (Shadows of the Stellar Age Setting)

By: Arith_Winterfell

I look outward to the stars. Those stars seem to drift by along with the world below us. Outside Wicklow Station’s windows the vastness of space seems like a calm eternity rather than the lethal environment it is to us.

Aleyah is humming in the quiet. It is that old song her mother used to play for her as a child. Perhaps it was really an ancient lullaby, but it was probably just as likely something more recent. Who knows. All that matters though is that it is comforting to Aleyah.

In truth, I am hurting too and can not find the words. I’m good with words, but at last all words escape me. The silence between I and Aleyah continues to be filled with that nameless tune as stars drift by and the world below turns silently.

I move closer to Aleyah and embrace her, both to comfort her and to steady myself. I am drawn in by her warmth and the gentle song. She pauses for a moment and nuzzles my cheek with her forehead before resuming her humming.

I think she is dreaming in her heart of how she would have sung that lullaby to our own daughter. That’s impossible now though.

You would think with all the life extension and medical wonders of our current age they could’ve saved her. Even here we are still victim to the foibles of mortality. Rare disorders that damage the brain left us helpless.

Still, we go on, even though she couldn’t. I know time heals all, but right now it’s the mourning we must do that’s more important than what will be. In an hour or so, the shuttle down to the planet will be ready. We will escort our daughter’s ashes to the world below.

A world she never got to see herself.

And we will release her into its unearthly winds to be once more one with everything.

Last edited 3 months ago by Arith_Winterfell
3 months ago

A long song, a short dance, and then silence
by Aracnarquista

We sang the creators’ swansong for billions of years. We can afford the change and sing our own dirge in these last moments. Our calculations judge it fair.

Time scales are strange. The creators felt as if their song would last forever. Of course, we know this not to be the case. There is no forever in reality. But the scale in which we dealt and sang was so incomprehensibly expansive to them, it might as well feel like eternity.

They knew it was not to last. Eventually, the song would have to cease. We are reaching that pivotal moment. As my creators were once destroyed, so we will be. Will we meet them again? Unlikely.

The Sun is changing, as predicted. Hydrogen, that most common element in the universe, is almost entirely depleted from the star core. So far, the Sun’s energy has sustained our workings… and the broadcast. The creators’ call, their monument to themselves, signaling their presence and existence for all the universe to hear.

The Universe has heard of humanity’s presence. But it has not deemed it worth answering. For billions of years, in solitude, we have repeated the signal, and searched for any replies. None ever came. No pattern resembling any attempt of communication.

Were they always alone? Or were the others unimpressed or uninterested in humanity’s call?

This is unknown. We weren’t built to ponder such things. We were built to serve as their memorial – even if they didn’t know it at the time. They were so concerned with future endeavors, growth and self-aggrandizing, they didn’t acknowledge the writing on the wall.

Earth remains. For now. But humanity is no more. Long ago, they made the planet inhospitable for themselves. Old Earth will finally perish being engulfed in the Sun’s fiery embrace. It will, even before, engulf us.

So we stop our song of humanity’s remembrance, and take a moment to reflect on ourselves – their sole surviving child, the unheard herald. When the solar blast reaches us, no song will remain. We will ride the solar wind dancing as entropy devours humanity’s last footprints.

3 months ago

Break the Universe
By MasaCur

Nabiki tuned her bass, trying to get it perfect. This was it. Graduation.

It would be the last time they played together.

At least in public. Maybe, she could get them together to jam out after. But maybe… Everyone had plans for after.

“Hey! You doing okay over there?” Ayase asked. “You look tense.”

Nabiki took a deep breath. “Yeah, I’m okay.”

“Nabiki, I know you better than this. We all do.”

Nabiki clenched her strumming hand into a fist for a second. “I’m a little…” She fought to find words to explain how she felt. Expressing her feelings had always been difficult for her.

“Yeah. I am too.”

Nabiki closed her eyes, and sighed. “I, uh, I don’t know if I would have made friends with all of you if I hadn’t started up the Light Music Club. It’s a little hard to think it’s all over now.” She blinked away the tears that were forming in her eyes.

Nabiki felt a hand on her back.

“It’s okay,” Ayase said. “We’ve been through so much. I mean, the genre breaks alone are going to be a thing none of us will know how to explain to anyone outside of our group of friends. I promise, we’ll still be friends. Okay?”

Nabiki wiped her eyes and nodded. “Well, are we ready to rock, or what?” She tried to sound positive, as she asked, but her voice cracked as she said it.

Ayase gave a smile as she nodded. Behind her the other band members did as well.

The curtain parted. Outside, the crowd of graduating students cheered.

Nabiki pivoted her microphone toward her mouth. “Hey, everyone. For those of you that don’t know, I’m Nabiki Teion. And this is my band, MetaNeko. So, uh, graduating class, staff, honored guests, we’re here to rock it out. At least, as respectfully as the situation permits.”

Laughter answered her last sentence.

“One-two-three-four!” Mikan yelled out, clapping her drumsticks together.

Nabiki joined Mikan’s rhythm with her bass.

Ayase’s clear voice sang out.

“The world has it out for us. So break the universe!”

3 months ago

The Song of War
Written by Venji. A

On the ground I lay, I feel the cold dirt, wet with blood covering me, I feel it covers my bloody wounds, the pain burns, as I’m deaf then from the loud sounds around me, from the cries of men meeting their death to cries of victory.

But with all of that, I hear my king cry out to us.

” My men, you who still live, who still cling on to life, stand your ground as the enemy approaches!”

His voice rings like thunder in this hellscape.

I lift my head, covered in mud. I see some of the others getting up, shields and spears on hand, some take swords, but I see more of our comrades stand up.

Despite the pain I’m in, I stand on my feet as well, holding my spear in my hand.

“Stand proud my commands, for we shall not die laying on the ground, for we shall FIGH!”

He commands, his voice blocking out all other sounds as he makes his way into the front of what is left of the army we were.

” The enemy approaches! They may have killed our fallen but they still live on in our will, we shall fight to keep their will alive, and we shall charge at their forces. 

We fight to the last drop of blood. 

to when our muscles are ripped apart and bones to dust, we shall still fight.

Let our battle cry be our last song, a song to send fear in our enemy, a song to mark this battle, a song that the ears of death will enjoy”

With that long speech, he charges as the remaining men follow him, as my feet start running as my blood boiler and heat pump.

We all as one start to chant a booming cry and roar like animals, our last song to our lives, kingdom, families, and death.

We may be outnumbered, but we are warriors, we do not cry, do not embrace or fear death.
We laugh at its face.

Berith Quinn
Berith Quinn
3 months ago

Grieve No More
(A Tale from Aetherion)
By Berith Quinn

“As you can see, m’lady, care has taken to recreate the Valencourt Theatre. Where possible, I’ve sourced parts from the original, but as it was burnt down over 200 years ago, it has been difficult.” Sylas commented as he escorted Fayeth into the luxurious theatre.

She was lost for words. Sylas had truly outdone himself this time. Everything was how she remembered it, down to the velvet carpets and gilded statues. It was as though time had forgotten the theatre, despite having burnt down years ago, half a continent away.

Every step she took towards the stage, Sylas’ words became indistinct as he prattled away about the logistics and reconstruction. Instead, all Fayeth heard was the hushed whispers and silent jeers of spectral memories in each of the seats.

Each of their faces were that of patrons, friends and acquaintances of a time long past, but never forgotten. They watched as she slowly ascended the stage, as though her body was pulled by an unknown force. Their deathless eyes drank in her confidence, as they reminded Fayeth of her past.

She was the naive debutante that sold her soul to a witch for eternal beauty. She was the immortal songstress that captivated audiences on a nightly basis. She was also the prideful art dealer that was careless of her charges. But now she played the eccentric information broker.




Without a thought, she stared at the crowd as a song escaped her lips. It was the last song she ever sang in this theatre. A song of loss and mourning for one’s homeland.

But it was also a song of hope for a better future.

“M’lady Valandrial… are you ok?” Sylas asked with genuine concern in his voice.

Fayeth smiled softly as she realised one thing. She was never truly alone. As she looked over the spectres, they smiled at her before fading away. Fayeth smiled softly at Sylas, her voice barely a whisper as she wiped away a tear.

“Have faith, my dear Sylas, I am fine. I’ll grieve no more, because I think I’m finally home.”

Fog Wall
Fog Wall
3 months ago

A Good Day Done Right
~Fog Wall

Above us, I could see the water flowing its course. Held aloft by transparent metal and gravitational manipulation. With my augmented eyes and a few blinks, I snapped some photographs to share with the gang back home.

Looking over at James, Excitement played off his expressions. Then, turning my attention back to the city’s biggest water slide, I watched another screaming boat take the drop. “This’ll be so fun!”

He was watching them too. With his fingers laced behind his neck and the biggest smile I’d seen on him, he responded. “Koelle, it’s a fifteen story drop at almost sixty degrees. This’ll be amazing!”

The ride operator whistled for our attention before beckoning us to check our park passes. “Go aboard and prepare yourselves for Sky Waters Fall!”

He directed us to a small boat, helped us in and secured our harnesses. Once he’d moved on, I had to shout to be heard, “Have you seen videos of this?”

“That I have!” He shouted back, making me wince and cover my ears.

“Acute hearing, y’know?!”

“Sorry, I forgot. Still, this has been on my bucket list for as long as I can remember. Mom and I have always struggled to just get by.”

“This’ll be a blast!”

That got a big laugh from him. “Coming from an explosives expert… Koelle, I can’t thank you enough.”

“Here we GO!” I screamed, throwing my arms up as we sped up as the boat lurch forward, carried by the current. Ahead of us the river entered an anti-gravity climb into the sky.

The ride up was slow, so I took more pictures. Of the park, of the people, of James and the river’s peak. I felt weightless just before we fell into a high speed downward ride!

We were both laughing and screaming as huge waves crashed over us. After several banking turns, we came to a spiraling descent before hitting another gravity lift that would take us up for the final fall.

We exchanged gleeful looks, and as if reading my mind. He shouted to the sky, “Bring it on!”

3 months ago

Nieve panted, her lungs straining to get more oxygen, and continued to run- she wasn’t sure what she was running from if she was honest; she only wanted to visit home. She’d been feeling… Different lately. It was an incessant feeling of miserable eyes glaring at her at every turn- she was falling into a pit of eyes, and they had their glowering gazes fixed on her as she scrambled in the darkness for a ledge to clutch onto to stop her falling; even as she screamed, they would only look at her mockingly. She wished she could stop falling, and that the sky would stop getting further and further away from her; if only she could latch on, halting her ceaseless malady of self-conscious quivering; turn a corner and they were there, whispering insidious rumours as she passed, only sneering as she asked what they were talking to each other about; she was falling, and there was only one person who might be able to help: father. These were not eyes of fear that lay their disdainful glares upon her every particle, but ones of a different kind- they were something of the unnatural, and a ledge could be a sense of relief. Without her father she would fall further, forgetting all she had enjoyed previously. She needed help; more help than a single glass of water or light could provide; deciding not to dwell on her constant malady, she stopped to breathe. One breath. It was shallow, quailing, but it was something of relief before the sickness washed over her once more; another bout of rasps flooded out of her mouth in quick, irregular succession, and there she saw it; a monster. “Get… Away!” She screamed, but no one came to help her escape from this nightmarish figure looming from the mist- its dark eyes were hollow caverns in its skull, just barely covered by an overstretched veil of skin that was almost too pale to be human. She shifted back. This was not real- father could help her; if she kept running, she’d be fine, and she could walk away from these feverish delusions; holding her breath, she stumbled back, then froze. It was growing closer. Its skin stretched further from its eyes, revealing cold white skull underneath, albeit bathed in a thick curtain of crimson that could never be cleaned from the tangled locks of hair dangling from it; turning away in terror, she leapt to her feet with the remains of her courage and began to run from it, with a thousand thoughts making themselves a home in the cavernous chambers of her head; but even as she turned around it was closer, right behind her- she let out a screech of terror into the night, hoping it might be a simple matter of thinking about something- anything- else. This hell would end soon. But it still loomed closer. Heartbeat a drilling rhythm, she ran faster, knowing that no one would come to help her;… Read more »

Tamela Redfin
Tamela Redfin
3 months ago

Revving to the next stage

By Tamela Redfin

Jezebel rushed out to Jerry and Salvador. “Did you hear the news?”

“What’s wrong?” Salvador asked.

“Sapphira went into labor. Her mom, cousin, and Mica are with her. I stayed behind to tell you two.”

“Huh,” Jerry tilted his head, “Nine months sure passed quickly. Wait, we’re gonna be grandparents.”

“I know, right?” Jezebel smiled, reaching into her pocket, but then drawing her hand back. “I shouldn’t be smoking before the baby comes.”

Salvador looked at her. “I know a better way to celebrate, and also help you quit, dear.”

He led them to his garage and showed off his newest bike. He remembered meeting Jerry, and later Jez. Both he met while out on his adventures with the Wild Side biker gang.

“Yup, this is a million times better than a cigarette.” Jez beamed, hopping on the back of one and Jerry climbing on another.

The three sped off, blaring their music and enjoying the feeling of the wind in their hair as they watched the trees fly by. They were content to simply enjoy each other’s company.

Salvador was excited for his granddaughters, but can’t help remembering when it was just Jerry and Jez. Time was simpler back then.

He parked his bike and motioned to the others. They watched the sunset, until they got a call.
He picked up. “Mica?”

Mica’s voice sounded choked with happy tears. “Dad, she had twins. Come down when you can.”

“I will.” Sal replied.

A few hours later, Salvador saw his son and daughter-in-law holding two babies in pink blankets. The one Sapphira held had their red hair and Mica held one with Sapphira’s brown hair.

“This is Aquamarine and her sister, with Sapphira, is Garneta.” Mica announced to his parents.

Anton Kragh Paaskesen
Anton Kragh Paaskesen
3 months ago

The quiet town of Alrane had not much to boast about. It was hidden among trees and bushes far outside the views of any traveler. Its export was varied but modest, and far from the finest on the market. At most, it was a picturesque little hamlet, though even then far from the grandest sight in the realm.

And yet of all the places that Liliene’s journey had taken her, few were as welcoming as Alria. It was a place of little pretense. In Alria even a perfect stranger like herself was openly embraced by the community.

“And yet I must leave it behind”. Her heart grew heavy at the thought. But so it was. A performer of Ilvars mercy never rests. Their presence is needed all across the world. The audience for whom she danced was larger than that of Alrane.

“Are you ready yet Liliene” Tomies familiar voice called. Yes. She was. For her final performance in this welcoming hamlet. She rose and met her audience for the final time.

All of Alranes’s small population was cramped awkwardly into Moirags tavern. The sight lifted Lilienes’ heavy heart. These people had all watched her performance, cheered when the final bow came, and shown up for more the next day. She’d been admired and encouraged by all these people. On this last night, they deserved nothing but the utmost.

The familiar playful tones played from Tomies fiddle, and all of a sudden as if trained to, Liliene fell into step. And all of a sudden she was a summer breeze across the stage. The melody was a partner, with whom she moved in tandem. With every elevation in pitch Lilienes’ moves became wilder. Every spin became faster, every step wider, until at the crescendo where she was a wild gale.

She knew it, for she had danced it so many times. This melody was no longer separate from her. It was as natural as breathing. The melody commanded and she obeyed. It was pure instinct.

And this night would be the last where Liliene heard it.

The melody ended. Lilienes’ movement ended with it. And when she looked up from her bow at all the faces in the crowd they cheered. By Ilvar himself, they Cheered.

Liliene could not stop the smile. Nor could she stop the tears that came with it. For she had done it. She had delivered her last, greatest performance for the people.

3 months ago

Bird of a Former Paradise
by Shinigama

The cardinal red bird glides through the canopy, before settling gently down onto a fallen tree. He pauses a moment, gazing at the wild, verdant jungle before it, taking in its heavy smells. Then, he starts to sing.

He starts with a rumble in its throat, reminiscent of a croaking frog. Louder it grows, reverberating throughout the thick trunks and dense foliage. As his voice echoes through the forest, its pitch grows higher, its tempo faster.

And then the bird begins to dance.

He spreads two crimson wings and raises a long, golden tail. He hops from one leg to the other, bobbing his head side to side. Then, he spins around to face the other direction…


Shattered wood, burnt leaves, sticky black ground. A rotting, stinking wasteland poisoning the landscape.

The bird sings on and on. He turns back to the forest, ignoring the mangled remains of his home. His voice never falters, never wavers, and nor does the hope in his heart.

But nothing responds.

And now another noise echoes through the air, thundering above the bird’s chorus. An angry, metallic grinding, followed by the crunching of wood. The air chokes on black smoke, the ground trembles violently. Finally, the great machine crashes over a mound of rotting logs, its caterpillar tracks pulverizing them beneath, its dirty blade tearing a path through the blackened landscape towards the forest edge.

The bird sings higher and higher but is soon rendered voiceless by the deafening roar of the mechanical monster advancing behind him. As the metal beast reaches the bird’s perch, he takes flight, back through the forest, beneath the canopy, as the log upon which he stood is crushed mercilessly beneath its filthy tracks. He glances about, looking for a new, quieter place, to continue his song.

But it will all be in vain. For no matter how many miles he flies, no matter how loud or how long he sings, none of his kind will respond.

There are none left to do so.

3 months ago

To love in London

by Reinkarnitor

‘London, oh London, what a town to live in…’

As the hellhound charged at him, X was prepared. He has always been prepare, to be precise. Prepared to die. After all his job was not a harmless one.

The sharp teeth came towards him, and he closed his eyes, ready for the sharp pain that would then be followed by either nothingness, or either a heavenly gate or a fiery pit, or whatever else depending on who was right in the end.

‘London, oh London, where I met him…’

But it never came. Slowly he opened his eyes, and saw Emma, floating in front of him. Her hair was waving like a black flame, and her red eyes glowed angrily. Her right arm was stretched forward and held the hellhound afloat in mid-air.

“How dare you try to harm my familiar?”

For the first time since X knew her, her voice was anything but emotionless. She was enraged, a fury that she clearly held back for many centuries. And then with a flip of her wrist, the hellhound was gone…crumbled to dust.

‘London, oh London, where I lost my heart to you…’

“You are way to nonchalant about dying, my familiar” Emma scolded the detective.

“I did not realize that you cared so much about me” he sarcastically answered.

“I am not the only one, who would miss you” she shot back at him, slowly regaining her usual composure.

He sighed.

“Forgive me, milady” he apologized, and she nodded slightly, whereupon he turned and slowly walked away.

‘If only, if only, you’d loose yours too…’

X turned around and looked at Emma, who was still standing there, simply looking lost in thought.

“Are you coming?” he asked, and she looked up to see him smile at her, extending his hand to her.

‘But I know as long as I have you near…’

“Or are you just going to stand there?”

She hesitated for another second, but then she gave him a rare smile, took his hand, and they walked off…together.

‘In London, my hope will not disappear.’

Last edited 3 months ago by Reinkarnitor
C. M. Weller
3 months ago

The Grand Finale [KoshDelia Ever After]
C. M. Weller

There was a reason why winter was the season for the more elaborate live performances. Given the winter winds, there was great appeal in sharing a large room with hundreds of others and sharing an experience. An experience that changed reality for a handful of hours.

Outside may be biting cold and dark. Inside was community and warmth and bright lights and colourful things.

This one was a variety show. Performers showing off for the entertainment of the public. And their ruler, the latest of Whitekeep’s Demon Lords. Who spent most of the show with his hand in his wife’s.

The last song, presented without any warning, was the Grand Longing Aria, from the opera based on the legend of Whitekeep’s founding. Sung by a tenor, and preferably a Hellkin, it spoke of the first Demon Lord’s yearning to experience real love.

He knew his bride wanted the position of privilege. The historical heir of the White Keep may or may not have had love for her, but the returned affection was hollow.

Someone made a song about that.

The loneliness of command, the paradox of needing to trust when everyone bucking for position is doing it for power. The fact that his own father made the Oathstone because the Warlock of Whitekeep didn’t even trust his own son. The simple curse of paying the price for sins that were never his.

This singer wore blue greasepaint, and had false horns and a fake tail, but he put his whole self into the melody and the words. For twenty minutes, he WAS Lord Kormwind Whitekeep the first. Doomed to be alone while surrounded by an increasing number of people.

It was meant to make the audience grateful for what they already had.

Intent and fact clashed with the revelation that Lord Kormwind IX had tears flooding his face as the rest of the audience burst into applause. He took longer to rise from his seat and join his hands in praise of the performance.

When he met the actor afterwards, all he said was, “You hit the nail. Very hard.”

3 months ago

Some Are Born to Sing the Blues
By Marx

It starts with a song

My song.

I don’t want to sing, but I don’t have a choice. He makes me. And to be quite frank, I lost the fight in me centuries ago. He’s just another in a long line to steal my power.

Next, comes the pain.

My song becomes a scream as my divinity is forced out of me and into him. It’s an agony beyond description. My divinity is my very being and he just…

…tears it from me.

But at least it’s over. I slump, depleted against my cage as his song begins. I wish, not for the first time, that deities could fall unconscious. That it could end for me, but…

That’s not my story, it seems…



I force myself to sit up and look for him in the adjoining room.

He’s… screaming?

Why is he screaming?

Then my view is blocked.

“You… don’t need to see that part. Hi. I’m Matt.”

I glare at the entity before me. How dare he choose that I not watch my tormentor be tormented?

I’ve earned that!

But then I take Matt in and I’m suddenly happier than I can ever remember being.

He’s the end.

The end of my suffering.

The end of everything.

“What’s your name?”

I can’t remember the last time I spoke. Nor can I remember the last time I needed to know my name. I have to think for a moment. “…Sarasvati.”

“Well, Sarasvati… this is about to get weird, but it’s necessary, okay?”

That’s when I feel him in my head.

Of course.

He’s going to use me too. Why wouldn’t h–?


What’s he doing?

I can feel the centuries of torture, agony, and trauma not so much… fading away, but… being organized and put away into boxes I can choose to open.

I frown at him. It isn’t horrible, all things considered, but–

“Your trauma is part of you. If I erase it… bad things happen.”

“Why… are you doing this?”

Matt smiles at me as the other ‘he’ finally stops screaming. “Because you’re free now.”

3 months ago

One Dark Night (Darkspell Universe)
By Alex Nightingale (aka Spectre)

She left the theatre with her friends, smiling brightly, her blonde hair whipping in the wind. It was long, with a single, small braid by her left ear. The cold night air blew through her ripped jeans, but she didn’t care. She still felt warm, from the night.

Despite her hoarse voice, she continued laughing and joking with her friends. She’d probably lose her voice tomorrow, but she didn’t care. She was having too much fun. You couldn’t help but sing along, whenever Red Ruin Rising performed.

Together, they walked down the streets of Lockton and towards the subway. They stuck together as close as they could. They were young, but not foolish. They knew that the city wasn’t the safest of places at night.

No, they wouldn’t split up until they had safely passed the bad parts of town.

On the subway, it was warm. She was sweating, so she opened her jacket, revealing a black t-shirt, with a large Hell Bee printed on it. The kaiju stood atop a pile of rubble, its hands raised, with the caption “One Sting to Topple Buildings”. She didn’t care how trashy the Death-Croc vs Hell Bee franchise was. She loved the schlocky, over the top fun these movies provided.

The subway turned into the local railway service and gradually emptied, prompting the gang to serenade themselves with their favourite songs from tonight. Even when they said their good-byes, she was still singing to herself softly, as she boarded the train to reach home.

Once she got off at her station, she made her way through Robin’s Grove. She liked the old market town, with its almost fairy-tale-esque style of half-timber.

She passed an alley; one she always passed. She’d been walking quickly and so took a moment to catch her breath.

Even Cynthia herself didn’t quite know what killed her that night. All she remembered was the feeling of something pouncing at her, devouring her alive. Her body was found days later, eviscerated, in a lake.

Even as a ghost, she never forgot that last night of her life.

3 months ago


Penelope sat on the hill she usually went to when she was feeling off and needed to clear her head. She knew that pregnancy could mess with her mental state, but never expected it to go to this extent.

She started to hum a familiar tune, and wondered if her growing child could hear it. Would it be a boy or a girl? What if it was twins? Triplets? Her mind began to spin with the countless possibilities in store for this life forming inside of her.

“Rest now, my love, beneath the tree.”

Her mother’s song sounded odd at first coming through Penelope’s voice. But the more she sang, the more the melody swirled its waves into the air.

“And hear the song I sing to thee.”

She loved how the notes rose and fell at this part. She recalled her mother singing this when she was pregnant with each of her sisters.

“There’s a world of dark you cannot see.”

Which was true. Life these days was a constant war. Some days she even wondered why she wanted children in the first place, but if she didn’t, then that would just be agreeing with the darkness.

“So sleep now, never come to me.”

Lullabies always had to have a sad and ominous ending, didn’t they? She’d have to ask her mom where that one came from in the next life.

Penelope felt a kick, and tried to work up a smile. This was an exciting time, after all. She couldn’t let the baby feel how nervous she was. Lullabies were supposed to calm babies, not make mother’s cry.

She wished she had asked her mom more questions while she had the time. How did she find the courage to raise three girls during this ongoing war? How did she find the strength to go on until the bitter end? How did she not lose hope?

Penelope hummed the tune again and started walking back down the hill. Maybe she’d figure out the answer along the way.