"Shh." Fate hushed the little bundle in her arms. "They'll find us if you keep wailing like that!" Even though Shao's screams and moans had died away, tears kept pouring from the infant's eyes. Fate rocked her baby gently and kissed him on the forehead.
She let out a sigh of frustration. Where is Raiden? Was her only thought.
The war had been raging for years now, and she feared about the consequences of a young soul witnessing bloodshed and grave sin. Surely Shao Khan wouldn't be affected? By the time he would've grown into a man, he would've forgotten. Wouldn't he?
"Mother…" she turned around to find the God of Thunder approaching her. "I have found a place…" he began, but was cut-off by his pants. She felt bad. Days before, she had sent him to find a safe haven for her and Shao, and she could see the days of endurance had worn him slightly. But it was not a task she could have possibly done herself. Shinnok had won the allegiance of half the Angels and Nephilim-and they were all seeking her and the child. "But it is past the borders of Zion…"
Where it all began. She wanted to say, but held herself. She hadn't been past the borders since…since she had read the Prophesies. She had never even thought of going back.
The baby had fallen asleep, his snores faintly heard in the silence.
"We won't make it that far. Not without-"
"Help. Fujin and Reminiscence have agreed to 'escort' you there as well." He saw her look down. "Mother…please-" she raised a hand.
In the distance there was a blood-curling shrill.
"The Fey… no…that's impossible! They are too sinful to be-"
"We should leave before they find us." She looked up to see Fujin. They exchanged smiles. Reminiscence stood next to him, his eyes wide with awareness.
They turned to Raiden. "Where is our refuge?"
It was exactly as she remembered it. The walls, the mosaics-everything. The Caves of Prospect hadn't changed at all. As they reached the centre of it, her fatigue enforced sleep onto her.
She opened her eyes to find that there was no-one around. She arose and began to wander through the Caves—and if it wasn't for the Angel Light, she would have lost herself in the darkness.
Shadows crept along the walls, making the Caves feel eerier than they were. She found an entrance to another part in the region, and entered it to find the mystic illumination she knew so well.
Across the room was her future. She had seen it before, but never noticed the detail and words on the left of the scene.
The words were written in Niadic—an ancient language of magick, but she could faintly make out the meaning…
"Dark to light and light to dark.
The angels cry to whom art thou hark.
Blood be shed on this very day,
The boy be taken by the fey.
The vines of the future hang above,
You effort be worthless, all your love.
The child be dark and dark he be
A boy of evil—you will soon see."
She gasped at the last line and backed away…into something wet but thick. Fear gripped her heart.
She had stepped into blood.
She screamed and ran in a random direction. Somewhere, she could hear the clashing of swords. Instinctively, she ran towards the sounds—not out of curiosity, but out of her motherly protection. She had to find Shao.
However when she arrived at the sight, she found Raiden battling a…gladiator…
At least, that's what she thought he was. The man had Dragon's Armour on him, and wore a cow's skull as a mask.
She watched as he slowly struck down Raiden. She wanted to run to her son, but felt as if she were being restrained.
"Raiden!" bellowed the man. He laughed hoarsely and towered above the God. Just as he raised his hammer to deliver the final blow, she could hear Raiden's calls:
The man laughed once more and hit him.
"Mother!" she awoke to Raiden shaking her hardly. "Mother! Quick! Shao Khan said his first word!"
He won her attention.
"What?! Where is he?" Raiden grabbed her by the arm and led her to Shao Khan-who was sitting in Fujin's lap. A series of tiny giggles erupted from his throat.
"Raiden!" he cried, smiling at the attention that was being laid on him. Though the way he pronounced the name was "Wee-dn", his young mouth still incapable of formal speech.
Fate cupped her hands and ran towards him. She lifted him from Fujin and wrapped him in her arms.
"Ray-den" she cooed "Rayy-den"
"Wayy-dn… Rayy-dn… Raiden…"
It was impossible to not notice the grins that had dominated their faces. Seeing this, Shao began another set of giggles. "Raiden!" he said proudly. They gathered around him and exchanged smiles.
"Now…" they turned around. Fate froze in shock.