Excerpt

“I’m sorry, Elaine.”

The old midwife said sorrowfully as she gazed down at the pale woman lying on the dirty mat. Splotches of dark blood were pooled around this pale woman, and she appeared to be on the verge of her last few breaths.

 

Gently holding the stillborn baby in her bloodstained hands, the old midwife slowly laid the child into its mother’s arms. Meanwhile, a small wiry boy was currently kneeling next to the dying woman while firmly grasping one of her hands.

 

It was as if the boy was afraid that he would lose her hand’s warmth forever.

 

The young boy had hair the color of midnight, and eyes equally as dark. With streams of tears rolling down his cheeks, he scrunched up his childish face in an attempt to look brave, but his facade collapsed immediately when he saw his mother struggling with her next breath.

 

“Mother…”

The boy choked on his words, causing his voice to croak.

 

Tendrils of light blue essence slowly coalesced around the old midwife’s hands as she desperately tried to heal the dying woman with her element. After a few seconds, the blood seemed to cease to flow out from the pale woman, but it was clear that there was no preventing the inevitable outcome that would soon occur.

 

 

“Calron, come meet your little sister.”

The pale woman gently whispered as she slightly tilted her head to look at her sniveling eight year old son beside her.

 

Reaching out a trembling arm, the woman warmly grazed her palm against her son’s wet cheeks. She felt her soul starting to crumble from knowing that she would soon be leaving her son as an orphan in this cruel world.

The boy stopped crying the instant he felt his mother’s touch on his face.

This was the woman who brought him into this world and the one who showed him the true depths of love and compassion. Noticing the motionless blood-covered baby within his mother’s embrace, the boy felt his heart being slowly crushed with agony.

Robbed of the chance to take a single breath in this word, his sister would never know who her brother was, or experience what it felt like to be alive.

Suddenly, the boy’s mother started to cough uncontrollably as she struggled to breathe.

 

“Mother!”

The dark haired boy frantically yelled in panic.

 

“It’s alright, Cal… mommy’s fine… she just needs to rest a bit.”

The woman said softly, trying to reassure her son. With her quivering hand, she reached out to wipe away the tears from her son’s cheeks.

 

“Cal, leave this place after mommy’s gone…those people will soon come here to torment you… just like they did to your father…”

The boy slowly nodded in response to his mother’s wish, but a fierce determination began to spread across his face when he thought about the people his mother was talking about.

 

After the death of his father a few months back, the boy had already experienced the sensation of loss at a tender age, and the grief in his tiny heart could not bear the pain of another loss so soon.

How could he simply leave this place?

Those people had not only caused the deaths of his parents, but also denied his little sister to ever feel the warmth of her family.

 

Fate was cruel.

Destiny was worthless.

Only strength was everlasting.

 

The dark haired boy tightly clenched his tiny fists together, drawing blood as his nails pierced into his own skin.

As the small drops of crimson liquid dripped onto the floor, a seed of vengeance started to take root inside the boy’s heart.

 

“Keep the locket safe, Cal… it was the heirloom of your father’s family…”

His mother’s soft voice abruptly shook the boy out of his raging thoughts.

 

The dark-haired boy tightly gripped the dangling bird-shaped locket on his neck, and slowly nodded his head to his mother while wiping away his tears on his shoulder.

The pale woman tearfully hugged the small baby to her chest, and then slightly raised her head from the mat to tenderly kiss her son on the forehead.

Lovingly gazed into his eyes, the woman gingerly patted her son’s head for the last time. Slowly closing her eyes, the boy’s mother drew her very last breath of life.

 

All time seemed to stop.

 

Silence.

 

A heartbreaking cry of a young child echoed throughout the area, as it shattered the silence of the world.