Welcome to the Tenebris. You died and something went wrong! You were meant to ascend to the Heavens, walk the path of Reincarnation, be food for Worms, however that did not happen... Instead you took a solemn boat ride across darkened waters, together with other lost souls. Desperately trying to retain memories from your former life, you realised that you died and cannot go back. The light at the end of the watery tunnel revealed an endless desert, known by its inhabitants as the Tenebris- the dark.
Yet the sand does not scare me, not like the truth. The truth is that my memories are gone and I do not know what I did to deserve the Tenebris. Destiny itches under my skin, it pushes me forward, the end is calling me. I search for my Requiem, the end to my journey, clinging to the hope that something waits for me in the Beyond. I only truly fear Stagnation, the death of that hope, the knowledge that I will be part of the Tenebris forever.
There are four things I know to be true; I am dead, I am heading to a place I do not belong, There seems to be no escape and I cannot remember how I died…
I was awoken by soft rippling water, I am not in the water it seems, for I am not soaked or submerged, I am in a boat. As I slowly open my eyes, I am greeted by four others who have either opened their eyes, or are in the process of doing so. This is when I notice that I am cramped up in the middle and I am rather small in comparison to the others sitting next to me. Though the figure that stands out the most is a sixth figure, who is tall with a large black cloak and hood, no face to be seen. They are pushing the boat into what seems like nothingness, just pure darkness. We are only lit by a faint lantern at the front of the, rather small boat and it is difficult to see ahead or behind us.
The figure is quiet for a long time, leaving behind this awkward silence, as no one else dares to speak up, we were probably all mortified, I sure was. After what seemed like an eternity, a deep voice began to speak, it is unclear where it originated from, yet we all instantly looked over towards the tall figure that I named the Boatman , because they steered and pushed the boat.
‘You all have died… You are now heading to a place you do not belong… You cannot escape this boat…’ The Boatman spoke with a deep, monotone voice, pausing awkwardly long in between sentences. One of the others on this boat was in the middle of attempting to stand up to get out, go for a swim perhaps. As they jumped out, it was like they were phased back into their seated position.
‘I have some things to help you Wanderers upon your journey…’ They spoke up again, their voice trailing off at the end as they reached within their cloak. I could just see the tiniest bit of their body, or rather lack thereof. It was a bit unsettling to see nothing but a slightly transparent shadow in the form of a chest.
The Boatman handed each of us “ Wanderers ” a glowing ball of clay and I reached out to grab mine. The moment I touched it, the light almost became too bright to see and it shaped into a beautiful crystalline bow that seems to be made out of Amethyst. I looked at my weapon for a long time, it was like it was a part of me, a part that I could not remember.
They then pulled out of their sleeves, two objects and they turned to me, holding out the objects in each of their shadowy hands.
‘These are metaphors for powers I could gift you… Choose the one that resonates with your soul best, choose wisely…’ The Boat man said, it seemed like they said so with a grin.
Placed in their hands were two objects, one, a glass eye, the other an emerald feather. Though the glass eye looked intricate, the choice was quickly made the moment I looked upon the feather. It was like I could not keep my eyes off it. I took the emerald feather in my hands, holding it up and inspecting it. Meanwhile the Boatman moves on to the rest of the group, handing them their objects. As I hold my object, I feel this strange itch upon my back.
I look down on the floor of the boat and notice this compass, as well as two pointe shoes. I picked them up and took them with me. The compass spun in circles.
‘So it is probably not very usable’, was a thought that ran through my mind.
The pointe shoes were a little old, but for some reason I connected with them, they felt like a part of me that I had lost, that I could not remember. I looked down at my feet, they were bare and dirty, so I opted to put on the pointe shoes. They were not the most comfortable, but they would have to do.
Slowly there came light at the end of the tunnel. A bright, white light that was almost too intense to see. We all sat there with squinted eyes. Some of us seemed to have hope that this was all some elaborate joke, that we would not get sent to a place we did not belong, left to fend for ourselves. This hope was quickly diminished as our eyes adjusted to the light, to find desert, sand as far as our eyes could see. There was nothing there, not even cacti, only sand… Here was where we were left and soon after, we did not see the Boatman anymore, nor ever saw them again…