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Thread: The Ice King

  1. #1
    Registered User FREI's Avatar
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    The Ice King – 1: The Chamber

    Deep inside the glacier lives The Ice King, supple and smooth. His skin is aglow with the cold and unbelievably soft. He should be milky white but there’s an olive tint to his hue and no sooner do I see it than I want to touch it. Without gesture or words, he demurs.

    He is wearing no clothes but it’s clear that he’s warm; he’s in his element: he is The Ice King, and he doesn’t beckon or smile: he stands at the end of the hall that is lined with blue-sheened green walls of ice. They look soft, insubstantial, but they are hard as stone, centuries of gravity have worked them into solid rock. I close my eyes for a moment, the smell of the ice is clean and pure.

    I slowly move towards him and as each step feels heavier with uncertain awe, my head gets lighter. I realise for him I'll have to be all or nothing. Already I’m feeling the heat and I’m twenty, thirty feet from him yet. There, at the end of the hall, tall with ice and nothing else, is a passage, a gateway, in which he stands; he has no need for me, but I am now beholden to him. I slowly advance and as I do so I have to let go, I have to, have to let go.

    I half expect servants to take off my coat and my woolly hat, but there are no servants and no attendants, there is only he and he looks at me unsmiling but kind. He is ageless, of course, he is dark-eyed and strong. The Ice King waits for me to come to him, he knows that I must, now. For a moment I’m tempted to look back to see what’s behind me, to confirm that this is the path I have chosen, but something tells me that for that it's too late; now there is only forward, and so the snowfield, the mountain, the moon, the cavernous void of the night, the narrow, low gap that I happened upon and through which, more curious ever than brave, I had entered, fall away and become immaterial. There is no echo in the glacier and no breeze. There is no fire and so there's no smoke. There is air and the air is still. Cold as it is, it doesn’t move; it envelops me and so it feels warm. The Ice King knows that I am now in his power, and he turns and walks ahead, I follow.

    The gateway, the passage, the transition. A corridor of light and dark, of shapes and patterns. It neither narrows nor widens, it extends. The Ice King, naked, not tall, not short, of a human-scale build, moves ahead and each step he takes on the ice, the ice seems to light just a little under his feet: it may be in my imagination. It may be just a reflection. There is no other life in here, only he and I. And there's the light that plays on us. Deeper into the glacier we go and the deeper we go, the narrower the corridor through which we pass must become now, but it doesn’t get lower, only less wide, until it is possible, just, to walk in a dead straight line, just about, without your arms or your shoulders touching the walls. He walks ahead of me, and I now follow closely; I sense the warmth off his body, and the icy walls look as though they glow just a little as he passes. It may be just my imagination. Maybe a reflection. Every surface is smooth but not flat: the curvatures of natural ice.

    We arrive in the chamber: the chamber is empty and neither dark nor bright, there is a greenish whitish blueish light that comes from all directions at once, and in the middle of the chamber there is a large elevation where the ice rises to knee level, just: is this our bed? There is no fire but I am not cold and while the Ice King reclines, I loosen my scarf, I take off my gloves. I want to touch the ice but his eyes are on me, and I take off my coat and my jumper, my shirt...



    from EDEN by FREI at www.EDENbyFREI.net
    -----------------------------------------

    The Ice King is one of several self-contained short stories, connected story strands and random (or nearly random) vignettes that feature or will feature in EDEN.

    EDEN sets out from the simple, oft-posed, question: what do you say or do if, halfway through your life, you happen to bump into your younger self? It then goes off on wildly tangential meanders of observation and ponderages on meaning before reaching any sort of conclusion. (Though it does reach some sort of conclusion...)

    Also on here in the Short Story Sharing Forum are The Snowflake Collector and Pyromania.

    Thanks for lending your eyes and mind and:

    Enjoy.


    Last edited by FREI; 08-03-2016 at 05:24 PM. Reason: Corrected Post Title

  2. #2
    Registered User FREI's Avatar
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    Oh: I actually wanted to call this new thread "The Ice King", and the first post in it "The Ice King – 1: The Chamber" – if anybody knows how I can do this, your help is much appreciated!

    Thanks
    FREI

  3. #3
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    When you enter the thread choose "go advanced" and edit the title of the thread, FREI.
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

  4. #4
    Registered User FREI's Avatar
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    Thanks so much, Danik; that seems to allow me to change the post title but not the thread title... (either that or I'm being somewhat slow about it), so right now, it's actually the reverse of what I'd like it to be: the thread has the title of the first post and the first post has the title of thread.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FREI View Post

    We arrive in the chamber: the chamber is empty and neither dark nor bright, there is a greenish whitish blueish light that comes from all directions at once, and in the middle of the chamber there is a large elevation where the ice rises to knee level, just: is this our bed? There is no fire but I am not cold and while the Ice King reclines, I loosen my scarf, I take off my gloves. I want to touch the ice but his eyes are on me, and I take off my coat and my jumper, my shirt...



    from EDEN by FREI at www.EDENbyFREI.net
    -----------------------------------------

    The Ice King is one of several self-contained short stories, connected story strands and random (or nearly random) vignettes that will feature in EDEN.

    EDEN sets out from the simple, oft-posed, question: what do you say or do if, halfway through your life, you happen to bump into your younger self? It then goes off on wildly tangential meanders of observation and ponderages on meaning before reaching any sort of conclusion. (Though it does reach some sort of conclusion...)

    Also on here in the Short Story Sharing Forum are The Snowflake Collector and Pyromania.

    Thanks for lending your eyes and mind and:

    Enjoy.

    A new short story: hurrah! I am beginning to see a pattern between them. And they all are related...Beautifully written.

  6. #6
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FREI View Post
    Thanks so much, Danik; that seems to allow me to change the post title but not the thread title... (either that or I'm being somewhat slow about it), so right now, it's actually the reverse of what I'd like it to be: the thread has the title of the first post and the first post has the title of thread.
    That´s because your edited the post title instead of the thread title.The thread title is separated and above the whole post(look for the line above called title).
    Beautiful descriptions and creation of the icy-hot atmosphere!
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

  7. #7
    Registered User FREI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dreamwoven View Post
    A new short story: hurrah! I am beginning to see a pattern between them. And they all are related...Beautifully written.
    thank you dreamwoven! :-)

  8. #8
    Registered User FREI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danik 2016 View Post
    That´s because your edited the post title instead of the thread title.The thread title is separated and above the whole post(look for the line above called title).
    Beautiful descriptions and creation of the icy-hot atmosphere!
    thanks again, danik: i think i'm either being abysmally blind to this, or i don't have the right permissions for it. here is what i see when i try to edit the post:

    Screen Shot 2016-07-31 at 09.59.12.png

    if i then click on the thread link, that just takes me to the thread, where, incidentally 'thread options' also don't appear to allow me to change the thread title...

  9. #9
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    FREI,
    I think I know what's the matter, it has bothered me often enough. If you don´t mark remember me, when you log in, the page expires while you are still editing it and then you get that friendly message. Try checking the "remember me" box I think it should work then. If it doesn´t contact a monitor, Logos or Sherezade, I believe are both monitors.
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

  10. #10
    Registered User FREI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danik 2016 View Post
    FREI,
    I think I know what's the matter, it has bothered me often enough. If you don´t mark remember me, when you log in, the page expires while you are still editing it and then you get that friendly message. Try checking the "remember me" box I think it should work then. If it doesn´t contact a monitor, Logos or Sherezade, I believe are both monitors.
    that doesn't do the trick either, but it's a handy tip nonetheless, thanks! – i'd sent a message to the admins, but they haven't replied, so now i will follow your advice and contact one of the monitors. i'm sure it can be done somehow... :-) thanks for all your help!

  11. #11
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    Your texts are beautifully written, it must be annoying to have to grapple with this issue. I should open a thread about it too, asking for help.
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

  12. #12
    Registered User FREI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danik 2016 View Post
    Your texts are beautifully written, it must be annoying to have to grapple with this issue. I should open a thread about it too, asking for help.
    thank you so much danik, it's most generous of you to say so; and thank you also for your input and help: logos has now solved the problem for me! the story may continue... :-)

  13. #13
    On the road, but not! Danik 2016's Avatar
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    Glad to know that you have solved it!
    "You can always find something better than death."
    Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, The Bremen Town Musicians

  14. #14
    Registered User FREI's Avatar
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    The Ice King – 2: The Kiss

    The Ice King doesn’t speak and I don’t ask; the questions are too many, too small; too trivial by comparison. I feel my body tremble, not with fear, not with cold; with unfamiliarity? I look him in the eyes and their glint reassures me: I want his power to be benign, if absolute. As I take off my heavy boots and both pairs of socks, I expect the ice under my feet to sting or to burn me, but with my eyes on him still and his gaze still steady on me there is only the glow that expands from inside my spine.

    I take a step towards him and his presence feels no longer silent, it hums, or so my mind makes me believe, in truth he lies still and alert and my breathing is no longer shallow: I want to melt into him, meld with him, and as I step closer he sits up just enough to extend his hand and bring me into his orbit.

    Now the colours, the touch, the sensations, the heat from within the cold from without: this surface I lie on is as hard as polished marble, this skin that I breathe is softer than ermine but his grip and his hold and his motion are firm, no longer can I tell what am I and what he, my focus is gone, the ice and The Ice King, the light and the scent are all one; I dissolve into it into him into the fire of him in me, into the ice that is no longer chill but a mould of clean edges that envelop us like multiple layers of soothing gauze, like everything ever imagined but more, and more real, like losing myself, my thought and my fear, like everything ever felt but not known, like owning the universe through being owned, desiring only being desired, like being The Ice King through being his, not wanting not pining not longing not hoping not dreading not doing not acting not willing not giving not taking not talking not buying not selling not looking forward not thinking back not imagining and not dreaming. Being and ceasing to be all at once in the now and forever.

    The Now. The Forever. We breathe. We hold on to each other. I think I smile but I can’t be sure. He tilts his head back and exhales. I feel his breath on my neck and bury my face in his shoulder. The light is orange and blue and a little bit purple too, and we are embedded in the ice that feels now as if it has melted and made a pool of clear water that seems to flow warm, although this may just be the pulse in my temple and the beat of his heart and the tender embrace of his arms and the comfort, the comfort of him.

    We lie thus for hours or so it seems as I drift in and out of awareness and The Ice King is deep in my mind, quiet and quite majestic. I know I can’t stay here but nor can I leave. I bathe in the silence but words are bubbling inside me. I want for nothing now, but I wonder how deep, how old, how immaterial the ice is. I lift my head to look at his face, in repose. His lips are not of this world. I hesitate. I pause. I cannot ask permission. I cannot resist. I kiss him.



    from EDEN by FREI at www.EDENbyFREI.net
    Last edited by FREI; 09-05-2016 at 05:02 AM.

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    I just love your stories, FREI. They lead me into them and here I am.

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