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17thday ofJulyin the year2012
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A lone, hunched figure sat on a hill, protecting itself as much as it could from the elements. A quick glimpse of its face showed a young man with short black hair, an angry expression, and glowing yellow eyes where a human’s whites would be.

And his iris— a bright, blood red.

He had been exiled because he was different. Exiled by the blood castes, exiled by the Underworld, exiled by even his own self. The only one who could love him— who had ever loved him— was his jade-blooded guardian, and she had long since been taken from him.

Now he was alone, waiting to die. There wasn’t quite anything else he could do.

A small, female figure began to climb up the hill towards him. He didn’t notice her. She stopped in front of him, curiously eyeing his slouched, desolate figure with her green eyes. They roamed over his body posture and ragged clothes, and stopped in surprise at the sight of a symbol branded into the side of his neck, rather than an Heirloom.

“Hello.”

He twitched a bit in surprise, and then slowly looked up, meeting her eyes. She didn’t flinch at the sight of his eyes; rather, she actually seemed to lean closer, as if fascinated with the alien hue. At the sight of the color, she knows who he is. She knows he is an outcast, and yet, she does not care.

"What do you want?” he replied defensively, leaning backwards, a wary, questioning tone to his dark, gravelly voice.

“I’m Nepeta,” she purred, a catlike lilt to her voice.

"…Karkat,” he grumbled, annoyed.

Nepeta giggled at his sullenness. “What are you doing here?”

“You haven’t answered my question.”

"Which one?"

"What do you want from me?"

"I would be lion if I said I didn’t need anything. So I’ll just say that I’d like some furiendship. It’s kinda lonely where I am. So, Karkitty, what are you doing here?"

"Don’t call me Karkitty."

"Fine, Karkat. What are you doing here?"

He paused for a moment, looking away. “Hating myself.”

“That’s…” Nepeta trailed off and frowned, tilting her head. “That’s not quite right.” Then her face brightened. “Well, do you want to come and live with me? My best friend Equius… well, he’s really caught up in all the higher blood stuff…” For a moment, she looked as if she was about to leave, as if in search of the friend that had left her. Karkat hesitantly stretched out his hand in unseen comfort, unsure of the gesture.

Nepeta sighed, startling Karkat’s arm back into the cloak. “Well?” she asked, looking at Karkat with an amazingly bright smile. He was a little surprised to see how cheerful she seemed to be, while his own life was in such despair.

“…Sure,” he muttered, standing, revealing hismself as quite average sized, though gangly. Nepeta patted his shoulder, ignoring it when he flinched from the physical contact.

Together, they began walking towards the future of Eden.

¤

She listens to the tales of her predecessors with wide eyes, almost disbelieving the stories they speak. A kind of oral tradition, passed from the old to the young. They tell her that once upon a time, long before she was born, each and every one of them had beautiful, glowing horns in shades of red, orange, and yellow.

"Why don’t we have horns anymore?"

They reply that they don’t know. The whole tale, they say, is shrouded in mystery.All they can tell her is that generations ago, the horns suddenly vanished, leaving only the pale grey skin and the blood colors, and the eyes that came with them.

They continue on, telling her that their ancestors had quite a peculiar society. They name a few of the strange things they had for her: the mother grub, imperial drones, and something called a lusus.

"What are those?"

They laugh a bit, and she notices a kind of a sad edge to their laughter. They pat her head, and tell her that they will tell her later if she reminds them to. They sigh and whisper among themselves, obviously dissatisfied with the current state of affairs. She hears snatches of their conversation, and thinks she hears them saying that being forced to take care of the baby grubs themselves wasn’t what they wanted to do all the time, even if this child was the sweetest thing they had ever seen.

She doesn’t quite understand, but accepts that she will when she grows older. Her elders have never lied to her before.

Rose closed the old tome in her lap and chuckled a bit to herself. “So, Dave, our subjects once had horns, and the original Librarians took them out of their genes using magic so that they could fit in better. So kind of them, don’t you think?”

Dave looked up from his lap, a disarray of wires and scrap metal making a mess of his legs and the seat under them. “Lovely,” he replied sarcastically, returning almost immediately to his project.

16thday ofJunein the year2012
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The Underworld began as a nonviolent revolt against the highbloods and the Librarians. It was not operated in secret—everyone knew about it. The Librarians saw no threat of any kind in the Underworld, nor did they believe the lowbloods could do anything to undermine the system, other than plunder goods in an effort to own something. They did not object to this, because they knew that, in the end, all that was taken would eventually make its way back to the system in some way or another.

The majority of the Underworld was comprised of the yellow, brown, and red bloods, and because of this, its leadership was not by those who were high in blood rank, but by those who were cunning, intelligent and manipulative, and therefore able to seize power for themselves. Among these lowbloods, there resided a small number of green bloods, but these were rare in the Underworld’s ranks, since the shades of green could live comfortable lives under the system, and often did not feel a need for change in their lives. In contrast, the lower bloods were treated as servants to the rest, at best. To the lowbloods, the lure of the Underworld lay in the fact that if they could make a name for themselves in the Underworld, they could live in luxury that they could never enjoy as a low blood under the system.

If they could stay alive.

10thday ofJunein the year2012
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The Librarians found the planet in a search for happiness. They named it Eden, after the perfect garden of biblical times.They found their own happiness, certainly, but the same could not be said of those who came after them.

First were the Librarians, their true blood colors shrouded in mystery.

Then was the Queen, with a beautiful imperial purple blush on her cheeks.

Below her, the noble class, of shades of violet and blue.

The middle class; the craftsmen and skilled workers—shades of green.

And the lowest class, the poorest of them all, yellow, brown and red.

Eden was beautiful. When the Librarians first arrived there, they set aside areas of land for use as cities, leaving the rest of the planet to be a vast nature reservoir. They imposed but a few simple restrictions on the people who came after them: stay inside the boundaries and live within the system.

The system was an intricate establishment set into place by the Librarians in an effort to keep Eden as perfect as its people could keep it. The system became the Librarians’ namesake, for it was a kind of a library, in essence: a system in which everything one had, except for oneself, was owned by the government. Everything that could be needed to live one’s life was borrowed from the government, but to be able to borrow, the borrower must also contribute to the system. To contribute to the system, one had to borrow the materials from the system in order to create, and whatever was created was returned to the system, to be borrowed yet again by another. It was a cycle, one that was fiercely prejudiced in the favor of the higher classes.

Despite its flaws, the cycle still continues on.

But a new threat arises from the lowbloods, a threat largely disregarded by the Librarians.

They call themselves the Underworld.

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