These two new chapters will be integrated into Butterfly Dragon II: Dragon Butterfly.
The Mind Of The Butterfly
She looked across the city from her perch high atop the First Canadian Place tower. She'd often come here in the midst of a patrol, just to collect herself.
Below was a city that sometimes didn't need her. Didn't want her as the Butterfly. But she still gave what she could because what drove her was beyond what other people thought of her.
She'd never been a people pleaser in the sense that she'd do anything for approval. She'd do something and if others liked it, that was just her good fortune (and their good taste she'd joke). Her designs and fashions had been much the same. Never trying to do exactly what people wanted, but to challenge it mildly as her competitors had noted of her.
She'd been used to from a young age. Her parents had taught her that the road paved by the multitude of minds, often meandered without direction. Their Chinese wisdom that had found home in one of North America's capital markets. A city of prosperity, tradition and new beginnings. If you could find your way through the meandering path set out by the multitude. She'd learned that by staying away from what she thought people wanted, and what she'd set out to do, that the path was often very direct. North American common sense meets the wisdom of the Far East. Sometimes they'd clash. Sometimes they'd meet and make love.
From this height there were many whom would have a hard time seeing the city below, but her eyes were more than just what she saw. Weltherwithsp had taught her about the shared sight. To see though to what everyone saw at that moment. Not to be there but still to see.
She looked into the night and saw the echoes of their sight below. No sign of her. The one who'd put this great weight upon her shoulders and though she was capable of carrying much, it still pained her to be known as the protector of that which she sought to liberate her city from. The other one. Her enemy. Mortal enemy like none she'd ever known. Even Zek was mild though slightly cantankerous by comparison. She was just as deft in manipulation as she was in combat. An expert martial artist of the likes she'd not seen on this mortal earth. Was she even mortal or was she of the spirit legends of which her Mother and Grandmother would tell her stories. Like a risen goddess here to claim the world by her ways.
The press had been cruel to her since the mysterious Dragon Lady had arrived. The most recent encounter had pit her against the Dragon in verbal combat. There, Heylyn had learned that she was most agile and deceitful. She'd even manipulated her prey to side with her. Together they'd fought the Butterfly in a battle of wits rather than fists.
Heylyn the next day had read the headlines that their bodies had been found by Police. Each of them murdered and left as a trophy display for the city to see. Even signed by the Dragon herself in an indelible marker on the shirts of each of the victims:
Butterfly = nothing. Dragon = results.
Like she was running for office. If you vote for me, I'll clean the city of every rapist, abuser and crack cocaine dealer that ever was. The Buttefly? She'll just protect them from me? Who do you want?
Heylyn had managed to hide it. Her feelings about this character attack upon the Butterfly Dragon but it still left scars without breaking skin. Some of those scars were sometimes deeper than any that could be rendered by weapon or fist.
Monique had began to feel nothing but contempt for Heylyn since that night. Warai had even been spending more time with Monique. It was like she was losing bits and pieces of her. Heylyn had tried to make it up to Warai, pulling out the photographs and videos she'd taken in Japan before the stage play they'd attended together just outside of the Emporer's Palace. Warai on the stage hiding behind one of the characters of the play, laughing and giggling. Warai had seemed to lose interest though and found it more in Monique and this had hurt Heylyn deeply though she never let it show. Warai was free and Heylyn respected that more than anyone but she also had a bit more life experience than Monique. Monique would never admit that.
Monique had learned a much different truth than Heylyn would even understand. Not that Heylyn wouldn't comprehend it, but it was a pride that those who'd grown up in much more earthy circumstances might delude themselves with. A shield against the privileged. A prejudice much the same as the privileged might hold against those who weren't. A wall built of bricks provided by the ignorance of each side. Never realizing they were looking at a mirror at each other. Though as a result instead they were looking at a wall. The same wall that separated Monique and Heylyn. Upon which Warai was poised as each side pleaded their case.
Warai's little mind could see far beyond what they'd imagined though she'd often purposely limit that potential for her own sake. When things got too scary, like when the big people would stop being themselves and get all mean and not understand. Her protection. Weltherwithsp might have said that no matter the age no matter the size, few of us do realize. What we know is built of sand. It might seem solid but does not stand. We make this pile, there is no doubt. Don't put in what you can't take out. Warai understood Weltherwithsp's words. Whimsical but sensible. Not like the adult people sometimes spoke. Like Monique. Like Heylyn. Like she was a trophy they were competing over. Two friends made enemies. By the Dragon.
Warai had no concept though of the Dragon Lady and could not distinguish her as being the killer of her parents. Instead to Warai, she'd become a symbol much like Welly. A symbol that grownups did not understand like Welly. She was doing something. Monique maybe knew. Maybe she didn't. But something was changing and Welly knew. She trusted Welly so Welly had to be right. Welly likes Monique and Monique must be right too.
Below on the street below, something shifted. The mood had gone and the night had become imperiled. People panicking somewhere and she struggled to see. The Butterfly looked and saw panic.
She leapt off the building spinning mid air into a dive into the source of the fray. Her aetherial wings opened leaving a sparkling trail behind her and she stormed down upon the unseen turmoil.
The Dragon's Mind
She walked, and her heels clicked. Marking the pavement with each step. Even if the pavement did not yield to her step, she'd make it. It would notice. They would notice. Her mark upon the world was her step, each in turn. Like a path. Each step placed indicated a future step at some point. One by one they painted a path that the Dragon would take and each for this Dragon Lady.
She'd hidden her tattoos, for they were ancient and none had known. More ancient than time could be measured. Like the constellations in the sky. Would any dare decry the stars themselves? How they spoke volumes of the future? The many farmer's she'd felled over two thousand years ago didn't. It was like screaming at the wind. The clouds were and the tattoos upon the earth. In motion and telling a story to the stars, who'd cry their interpretation back to us. The rain will come. The sky will fall. Women will be fertile. No seeds sewn. Death and famine.
Her tattoos would whisper to her for they were ancient enough to have voices. Every single one of them spoke to her, Protected her. Each a Talisman beyond the understanding of these Western ideas. It was merely ink to them. Tainted skin. Like a bruise. A mark that had been rendered in pain. Their ignorance of ideas they could never comprehend. Like pictures in a book, the pages could be torn from their bindings. Gone. Like their ideas from generation to generation. They had no concept of time and agelessness of the skies. Like her tattoos. They were real.
Not like the falsities of stories of the West. Movies. Books. Fake realities made to fuel and need in the soul that few could understand and never quench. The real performance was before the Gods of all. To risk it all before the glory of the spirits as herself. Might they be amused?
With every kill she'd accumulated she'd heard them. Sometimes silence. Laughter. Crying. Oration. Swearing in the ancient tongue? She'd never know who or what. Just that they would notice and they would respond. They would never steer her path, for perhaps they were beholden to bear witness to hers. A prison. An audience. The show at a dinner feast? Like watching dogs fight over scraps of food? Spirits were odd, and though she might be considered as such by mortals, she was far from. Heylyn had been right when she'd determine that she was more like a force of nature. Though a force of nature with a mind and ego all the same. Beyond understanding. Just the click of heels for now. A flower? There in a planter the city had made. Trapped in a cement container. All these things were made. By the city. A God of sorts. A spirit of its own. And like spirits and Gods, it needed protection. Protection was a word few understood. Complicated by laws. Rights. Freedom. Compassion. Like a meandering path woven through everyone else's misgivings. They were all guilty. Some more than others. Her tattoos told her. Those on her breasts spoke much of the time, for they represented those of carnal sin. Those who'd lust after her with desires she'd seen often. Men. Women. It was natural. When she'd become a symbol to them, it had increased a thousand fold.
Then there were those who'd lust after death. Theirs. Someone else's. Sometimes they'd plot murder. Their own. Someone else's. And it would be done. Sometimes failed. Sometimes not. Hey tattoos would laugh. The spirits would cry. But blood was spilled. It was the way. But not her path.
It spoke to her. The pain of those who the Butterfly had missed. Somehow that mysterious beauty had made a mistake. Did (the) spirits really make mistakes?. She'd secretly ask (Warai). Welly would reassure. She wouldn't say anything. Her tattoos would just smile and watch. The Butterfly.
In the night.
In the sky.
You missed another.
Now tell me why?
This Butterfly spirit. A mess. The city (spirit) needed (protection). She thought.
Her tattoos laughed. Dead.
You'll see. You will really see.
Bruises. On her face. How?
Them. That one. You see? A mark on his Aura? There. They all do. A mark. You'll know it.
You prod them enough. They will. The bruises and their place upon their rendering.
This mark? Upon all who...?
A mark. Not the same mark. But yes. Like a stain upon the soul. An etching of their deeds upon their unseen nature except by the likes of your tattoos. And (ancient) you. Dead (they'll be). All (of them).
When I feel that mark. It hurts. Not because I feel it. But because I know the myriad creatures will feel. A push.
Then I'll pull. Understand?
Maybe. Aren't you?
No. Know. Can't you feel the timing? The tempo?
You speak mysteries spirits. I do not understand.
You will. Like the wave in a pond. Your prey does. So will you them.
Her tattoos laugh. Then they cry and scream.
That should be them she thinks.
Then speak spirits. You have your audience. Though my heels etch a path that is my own.
Your path is already set. They lie in your path for all is happening at once. Can you not see the wave is everywhere and nowhere?
I see them cheering my name. Then they cry.
Her tattoos cry and then they laugh. Then they tell her that they're lying.
This is madness. You make no sense. She says.
Then you must. They must die.
I knew that. Not because you said as such. But because I knew by the path of my heels and the voice of my tattoos. Dead. And they will like it. All of them. Like the waves in the pond. They will fall low, and I will crest high.
Like the rhythm?
Like my own tempo, but still like the rhythm.
Ripples have direction too.
They only have one direction. Outward ever expanding.
Then so should you.
Like the path of my heels upon this artificial stone they've made.
She remembered the same ancient conversation she'd had thousands of years ago just as she walked into the alley.
"Who in the heck are you? You better going unless you want some of this..." the man who'd been in the middle of a deal pulled a small metallic piece from his belt.
"Maybe you want some of me instead of this child's play your selling to?" she spoke stealing the show.
"Who are you calling children b#tch." one of the purchasers asked her voice waivering as if she spoke in unfamiliar territory.
The Dragon Lady did not hear. Her tattoos swooned.
Just as the girl had spoken, a group of nine males entered the alley.
"Hey! That's that b#tch from the news!" one of them spoke in revelation.
"Now so many needlessly have to die." the Dragon Lady said as the dance began.
From a building blocks away, the Butterfly saw.
The Dragon's tattoos screamed: She comes! Hurry! Take them all!
As two had advanced upon her their guns drawn, the flying black snake dug into their soul.
They tried to (scream) but they could not (scream).
Then the Dragon's fists and legs flew as did their bullets. Death like their bullets always comes in numbers.
They were not fast enough and the Butterfly approached while the Dragon killed (them) each.
To be continued...
Copyright © 2015 Brian Joseph Johns
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