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Chokecherries - Takuma AKA Qualm Advancement Contest Submission

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Chokecherries - Takuma AKA Qualm Advancement Contest Submission Empty Chokecherries - Takuma AKA Qualm Advancement Contest Submission

Post by FantasyBound June 6th 2021, 12:02 am

Character in use - Qualm

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Energize field

Takuma can allow some of his stored energy to passively leak from his body in very small amounts. Because of the sheer mix of variable energy types, it simply empowers everything within his 'field', a 5-meter radius. Well this ability is active, within it color appears more vibrant and people tend to get more emotional from multiple forms of spiritual energy, the part that applies its proper application is everything within is magnified by 50% of its original state. Be that the heat from a flame to the locomotion of things within the field. Objects that require to be charged get charged within the field at a very slow rate, and things acquire better fuel efficiency due to the enhanced output vs what's actually fuelling it.

No man is an island

Takuma, due to being both the supplier and such an energy-filled vessel already doesn't acquire anything other than the emotional spikes and physical enhancements from this ability, his energy manipulation is not enhanced. It appears that energy doesn't distinguish between friend or foe, as at the moment this ability applies to everything in the area, only working as an off/on switch. Despite enhancing some objects considerably it doesn't enhance the material in its current stage, meaning this ability also wears down equipment and bodies faster, muscle stress is always a problem with this ability or malfunctions with equipment. This ability doesn't stop charging batteries in the area, meaning it can overcharge and ruin them, finally because how it enhances everything upon entry ranged combat to people within the field is enhanced, sound is louder, light is brighter.

'Chokecherries' - Short story

Click here for music

It wasn’t supposed to be much of anything today, but it appeared one of Takuma’s socks went missing.

Takuma’s dirtied hands, fumbling around his bag of supplies with the hallmark shakiness of someone who just woke up tried to find his right sock, his eyes tried to seek out the red and white woven warmth but he continuously stumbled across what he thought was it but moments a growing sigh of disappointment and annoyance as it would have been either a hand towel or another article of clothing.

Going on for far too long Takuma grabbed a blue sock and put it on his right foot, unable to find the pair he decided today would just have to be a little bit out of sorts. He sat up, the crunch of the tarp that was folded in an angle around his body and clothing keeping him slightly warmer than if he was to rest in the open. He also before heard bits of how it was supposed to rain on this slow Saturday, he didn’t know when, just that it would at some point, so keeping caution close he set up for just that if it was to intrude on his already barely kindling amounts of sleep.

Takuma gathered his strewn about clothes and set his feet outside the tarp, putting on his worn stained white shoes he slowly got up and overlooked his position, an hour walk from the city he camped out in a bunch of trees out in a farmers field, concealed by the closed brush in the area far from most civilization. That would be an adventure all on it’s own for later today, right now it was still pretty early for Takuma, and he had his last bits of food ready for breakfast.

Takuma opened up what bits and pieces he had left, a bit of orange marmalade, butter in a little tupperware container, sugar packets from coffee shops, and some bread. Perfect for today before he went to go find more. He pulled out his small portable stove and linked the gas, starting it up with a few clicks he got to work.

He grabbed the jar of orange marmalade and opened it up, but something foul stung his nose as he looked within, blooming with life the jar was filled with mold, Takuma tossed the jar, gagging.

“Agh… C’mon, I was actually excited to eat that...”

He looked infuriated with his jar of what was supposed to be a semi-sweet orange goodness, he was going to sandwich it all up with a bit of sugar and bread to caramelize a little on the outside and make a nice soft texture and little crust for a nice fruity breakfast, instead he had just the bread at least. He opened the bag up and looked within, the smell may not have been but the visual was the same, moldy food. Takuma got up and picked the pieces up, tossing them on the ground before throwing the bag, slowly drifting to the ground as he saw his food disappear like the flame on his little stovetop. He knelt down and slowly began packing up, his stomach growling the whole while.

He closed his eyes and remembered tastes of jam toast in the morning, a rushed breakfast that often bothered his father with how little protein it actually contained, and Takuma only really eating it because it was easy to make, not a massive fan of the flavor he found to even be rather gross or bland. He would give up so much for that again, all this superhero stuff was far from glamorous, he wanted home cooking, not stopping good people from doing bad things or bad people from worse.

Something picked up on the side of his sensory abilities, a series of bright dazzling dots in the distant bushes. Takuma carefully set his stovetop to the side and approached cautiously, peering into the bushes, he found a branched plant with a bunch of dark berries covering its surface.

’Take a bite… Just a few… Food… Calories… Survive… Survive…’

Takuma was in a stupified state, reaching gently outward without much thought, he began picking the bunches of small berries, and chewed on one. There was a pit within, spitting that out he felt his mouth numb a little bit, but they didn’t taste bad at all, rather pleasantly sweet. His mind slowly started to grasp what he was doing, and thoughts poured in from inside.

’This can’t be good. Clearly there is something a bit wrong, but at the same time, do I have a choice? Maybe a bit...’

Despite his understanding of the lack of necessity, Takuma still continued to eat away at the berries, something within him questioned further and came up with wild solutions and reasons for his actions, inexcusably consuming presumably poisonous food.

’I heard before that some plants produce chemicals that cause an effect like a drug, making you high. I heard people who get high have an easier time coping with bad things, maybe if I get high, I can make it through today to tomorrow. And then come here tomorrow to come back the next day...’

His logic for the situation was all he could comprehend, he didn’t really feel much doing this, he wasn’t in the depths of despair, neither was he all that mad, it was just a series of actions leading to this moment, red juices surrounding his mouth as he ate well over two handfuls, satisfied, he wiped his mouth and continued to pack up. Green tarp being cleaned and tied to the back of his backpack, pulling his bicycle out he did a few checkups, tires needing to be filled since several days ago but he couldn’t find a place to do that for so long, but it was still good enough to ride. He pushed his way through the brush and made his way down to the dirt road, starting a slow melancholic ride as he continuously thought about the concept of getting high.

Click here for music

Takuma was just on the outskirts of the city before he noticed peculiar changes in the world around him. Vibrant hues slowly filling the area around him, the cool air seeming to warm up on his skin, he felt rather fantastic, but that brought back his thinking, he noticed an unnatural level of clarity as his multiple layers of thought tore away the world around him. The street he was pedalling down past these suburban areas began being pulled apart, lines running down paleing concrete, the rough grainy texture of the ground below him turning into what he imagined a railroad-like pathway. His pedalling slowed and he hopped off his bike, taking it with him as he seemed to lead it down this trail he went down. He stared enthralled by vibrant colors as peoples lawn ornaments seemed to explode with colorful designs, hell maybe they were even moving.

‘Is this it… This is weird but just so nice. I feel...’

Takuma teared up a bit walking down the path, it was unexpected, a small gasp from the boy as he looked at his tear stained fingers, the dirt being slightly washed away. An expression of shock turned to relief as he felt at peace. Wiping his hand on his shirt he kept up his slightly hobbled steps, getting easily distracted by everything around him.

’Amazing, this is amazing.’

It took Takuma a good two hours before he got to where he wanted to be, he was constantly stopping, just enjoying being enthralled by his emotional takeover causing him to wander and wonder at the world around him. This had to be the berries' effects, there was no other explanation.

Time flew by with that walk, he had the time of his life, whistling and hearing the sharp pitches and switches of his tune tickle his ears with the sound, the sound of peoples car radios coming through he picked apart the instruments. He found a pack of gum on the sidewalk and pulled one of the three remaining pieces out before putting it back, enveloped in a minty rush that chilled his body when he took a bite but tasting a slight ‘dirt’ taste from the tear in the packaging and being soaked in rain, he assumed. Every step he took was an adventure, he shouted at a man who drove by too fast, he felt immensely saddened for a whole ten minutes after seeing someone get rejected after a proposal on the steps of a new house, life was explosive and colourful, this was everything he wanted and more.

Food was a long gone memory to him now, barely feeling the need to eat it was like he was facing some form of uplifting experience, was this really all from just eating a few berries? He hoped so, but so utterly disappointed by the fact such a trade was not as uncommon. Imagery of fighter jets bursting into blooms of flowers in the air appeared as he looked at bright blue skies contrasted with dark steel colored clouds in the distance, leaves flying by his face he visualized them as a flurry of flower petals and feathers, an explosive array of color and softness brushing his skin, the sun's warmth mixed with this sweet ideology and the tune playing in his head lead to just a wonderful wonderland in watercolor overtop this unglamorous world of current suffering, but if more people joined his mission maybe he could cause something new?


Takuma looked down at his shoes, dirty and scuffed up.
It was hopeless with him, he thought, to even consider that he could bring that change would be devastatingly unrealistic. He was simply this kid looking for peace, and he found it, he should stay happy with this! What made him sad, he continued on, hand placed on his chin, his bike crashing on the ground as he was enveloped within his small space.
He hated to see people hurt, especially if they were good and didn’t have anything to do with the events, which happens so much. Perhaps, it was best to leave this hero stuff to people who wanted to do it. Takuma didn’t want to do it, he pictured back of his dreams to be a caped crusader for the innocents but those dreams couldn’t be further from reality, sure he was weird and stuff but that didn’t mean he should go risking his life for people who didn’t need him, they needed someone stronger, tougher, faster, and hell of a lot handsomer then himself.

He stared hard and long at his bike, people brushing past him occasionally, some asking questions to simply be ignored, he saw the color drain from his bike and the world dissolve into a big swirl like a milkshake being blended up, everything catastrophically dissolving into a bittersweet flow. It was a while before he picked up his bike and carried on, like nothing happened other than he left his heroism behind, he was going home.

Click here for music

Takuma in the middle of his stroll looked at an empty basketball court, a small bucket in the middle was filled with colorful pieces of chalk, the ground around the bucket had very small drawings on it. Takuma put his bike against a chain link fence blocking the side of the street he was on, locking it in place before stepping in and investigating the drawings. He placed his hands and knees on the ground, taking a deep close look over the drawings, reds, greens, yellows, and a little blue being used to draw a car, a smiling man, and a flower. Takuma heard whispers overcome his mind, it was like before but with everything else, these were more vivid and clear.

‘Draw yourself.’

Takuma without a form of hesitation or second thought took out a piece of blue chalk, taking a few steps away from the children's drawings, kneeling down once again he began making a series of outlines, a humanoid head was starting to take shape before he froze up.

He got up again and wordlessly went right back to the drawings in the middle of the court, the drawing of the smiling man, his one little round hand was in the middle of the court, Takuma began working.

Curves and twists and spirals, the centerpiece had no discernible or visible end, Takuma scraping some of the chalk away to make a finer point, until the limitation of his tool took place and he had to stop, he began working outwards. The design was alien to say the least, it’s third-dimensional surface making it appear to sink into the ground and curve around, as this long branching spiral kept going, Takuma went back, more blue chalk, more spirals branching from the first. Eyes began to be shaped from overlapping spiralling patterns, faces and hands being shaped, inexplicable organs or random things being placed here and there overcross the court spanning artwork, Takumas fingers started to slightly bleed, every time he needed a better angle his hand scraped against the rough ground and it was starting to build up. He drew over his blood, a slightly purpled layer of blood and chalk being mixed into this swirling mass. His mind sinking and the voices growing to a conjoined chorus.

’Infinity, never ending, always present.
Infinity is too much for this universe alone.
Infinity is uncontainable, a single system of the universe is too small.
Infinity punches holes through everything, it is all worlds, all times, all little spaces dark and decrepit, bright and blooming.
As every universe expands, infinity chases it down, it fills these new gaps, it grows with the universe and multiverse constantly, infinity is not neverending in the sense that it always has and will be, it just grows with everything around it.
Infinity has a limit to its smallest size, this court determines that, but… the sidewalk and these walls, they grow with my work.’

All the voices silenced or quieted.

’My work...’

Takuma froze up, only now stopping to really pay attention to his bloodied and scraped hands, he lost a few of his fingernails from the constant scraping sensation. He dropped the pieces of chalk in his hand, stained with the blood from his hands. The entire court and even a bit beyond was covered in blue spirals, all conjoined into a single massive spiral. The world was dull now, the picture he spent so long working on lay before him, little bits seeming to disappear in a blur.

Takuma felt the few wet drops of rain drizzling on his back, all his work around him starting to disappear. He held out and looked at his stinging hands as the drops of water started to clean the cleaved flesh colored blue. Times when he was a little kid with a scraped knee came back, almost everybody has memories like that, his included his mother patching it up, setting him by the tv and watching the Simpsons with his dad, he never knew what was going on he just liked to be with his dad and laugh with him.

Takumas expression, for one of the first times in many weeks, grew into a smile as he stared deep into the dripping purple mess.

Memories recollecting cookies from his mother, best friends on fishing trips, thinking they found diamonds in a tree stump. Memories of camping, memories that included his series of misadventures, resolved fights and some unresolved. His hands rising to his face he covered his eyes with the bloodied digits as he started to feel the weight of his actions, recurring memories of sad events and of unresolved arguments. His behaviour that led him all the way to here, and the lightning strike that should have killed him.

But it didn’t, and he was still okay. He started to remember the stuff that happened after he left, the interesting people he met on the roads, the cool and dangerous things he tried. He was still around despite all that, he was around and still free. His face leaning up into the slowly growing downpour, he rubbed his eyes a bit trying to get some of the blood off, it slowly leaked down as he looked at the world. It wasn’t all that bleak, maybe a little sad in spots, but that just made the good days even better. He didn’t need drugs to keep him up, he had himself and his mission. He was going to make everyone see that day of peace, that point of jets turning to flurrying sweet rose petals and dove feathers in front of their very eyes. But right now, he was cold, he was getting more wet, and this may be the perfect spot to rest well the rain lets down.

Takumas walked his way to one of the corners, setting his tarp down like a triangle overhead. He leaned the front down to run the water off in front of him, bringing the bucket of chalk with which he would find it sad to see such a plentiful supply wrecked by the rain. Pulling out his small stove again he started it up, a single click and it hit him, a burst of heat alongside a vivid orange flame, a return of the vivid thought, as he wrapped his hands in sterile bandages.

"Well this is new."

A small red and white sock was later found in the bottom of the bucket, covered in purple and brown chalk.

Click here for music

Pallette cleanser song XD

Social media seemed to have one of it’s explosions, a picture of this surreal chalk art shown only after it rained was taken, in the back the presumed artist, being a young man with injured hands sitting under a tarp which blocked his face from view, but a few claim they have seen what he looks like, they wonder if the image is a self portrait. Suspicions of the reason behind it are still everywhere. People continue to question how such a creation was possible, as the chalk seeped into the surrounding area creating a big blur, but within those cracks ran the image, and when viewed from a certain angle, revealed the face. It has now since been washed away.

Chokecherries - Takuma AKA Qualm Advancement Contest Submission Takuma10
Might spoil the short story, explanation of some things below.
So chokecherries can be a little mouth numbing but they are safe to eat, Takuma simply started to build up a huge theory that they were not, putting himself in a mind over matter state where he started to act weird because he thought he was getting high, this inadvertently influenced an ability that does cause him to become very emotionally unstable which is what he thinks a symptom of being high is, all snowballing into the following events.

Takuma was terribly homesick.

The chorus of infinity is referring to how he seemingly holds infinite energy, an explanation of how it works for him I weaseled in, better explanation to come in with the Black Sabbath advancement.

He didn't feel his hands falling apart because his ability grants him crazy focus, focusing on making the spiral art he wasn't noticing how his hands were doing.

Finally, the message 'draw yourself' and the picture ending up going from a picture of Qualm to his body was not his own or Qualms actions, something in the background asked him to do that at that specific time to see those specific events come to pass. This is an upcoming part of his story.

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