Disclaimer: Ummm…I think the only things I own her are the characters and the plot.
Author's Notes: hehehe…you'll see one of my favorite sins in action here! Yay!
Clank. Clank. Clank.
Her footsteps echoed as she made her way down the cold, gloomy stone steps of the Pronteran dungeon.
"I… have a confession…"
She stopped. Second thoughts ran through her head like grassland wildfire. She shook her head; trying to clear her mind of any of those unwanted second thoughts… they'd only make her job harder to do. She tightened her grip on the two weapons she held with each hand.
"God… you are said to forgive even the greatest of sinners though how cruel you may be… Please, bear witness to this…"
She didn't realize that she was holding her breath till her chest hurt. Slowly, she started to exhale, trying to calm her tense nerves. This was getting hard to do…
"This is my first- and possibly last- confession…
Sadistic Lunatic Presents:
Dawn to Dusk: Twilight Secrets
I was the child of two runaway rogues. Pitiful, isn't it? I remember a time when I would watch the other children play with each other, not minding the Morroc's scorching sun. I would seethe with envy at their antics. And when the time comes for their parents to pick them up, that jealousy would grow. But as always, there was a reason why I'd stare at that heart-wrenching sight each day...
"Come here, dear." A sweet mother beckoned her child with a warm smile as both arms wrapped themselves around the little boy.
"Mommy!" the little boy cried gleefully. Unknown to the pair, a small, shady figure walked passed them.
As soon as the young silver haired boy was within a safe distance, he unfolded his arms, bringing forth a small brown bag and started counting the money he stole.
I was four years old at that time.
For as long as I can remember, I've always wanted to be loved. Not simply needed for gain nor just plain feeling. Pathetic, to think a sin would be craving for that. But some things can't be helped; it was like a powerful drug, as soon as I felt it, I would be starving for even more. I always brought home money, feeling guilty that I was the one who stole it.
But it was easily washed away.
As I've stated before, I was born of two runaway rogues. I would arrive home happily whenever I brought home lots of money. Whenever there's money, my mother, sweet angel that she is, would embrace me in that warm, sense-tingling hug. I can still remember that wonderful feeling of my stomach fluttering; she was showering me with her maternal love.
But then again, I was born of two runaway rogues.
That man, oh how much I despised that bastard. It was because of him that mother would do the things she did. My mother loved that thing dearly, going to such great extents to keep him happy. Whenever he's happy, she's happy. Whenever she's happy, I'm happy. It must've been the most pathetic cycle in Midgard.
I would steal money to make her make him happy. Oh, that damn, gambling, drunkard. My steals were never one hundred percent successful. A friend of mine, before, once said that, with just a flip of a coin, one hundred percent was possible. But he was proven wrong. As I was saying, my steals weren't a hundred percent. Sometimes I would come home bloodied and beaten, filthy and extremely tired. But I always did my best to make those steals work, coming home with lots of money. Why? The answer is as plain as day.
He was her world as she was mine…
"If only… I didn't get pregnant…" the woman buried her face against her hands, sobbing loudly.
"Don't worry, mah…" a filthy boy with silver hair approached his mother, pale blue eyes, seemingly blind, filled with concern. With a soft voice of hope, he continued. "Everything will be alright, mah. I'll eve-"
"If only YOU weren't born!" she spat with venom, slapping the young boy hard. The thief fell down, clutching his reddening cheek with one hand.
"If only you weren't born!" she continued to slap him in blind rage. She started pulling his hair violently.
"M-mah…it…hurts!" the little thief groaned painfully.
"He would've been happy!" she continued beating the boy, kicking his stomach and slapping his face, hot tears continuously streaming down her face. "We would've been happy, damnit!" rough, feminine hands made their way to the young boy's neck and started to tighten its grip. "If only…you…weren't…born…"
I was three when I realized what needed to be done.
I recall waking up later, midnight I think. My head was cradled on my mom's lap though we were still at the same place. Her face…it was like an angel crying… tear-streaked… it was then that I knew no matter how my mom treated me she still loved me tenderly. I could never bring myself to hate her. She was the only one who genuinely cared for me… though most of the time it came at a price.
But my upbringing isn't an excuse for the sins I've committed. There is no excuse for the sins I've committed. I guess that's why we're called the 'Embodiments of Sin'"
Her legs gave way as she fell on the cool, mossy floor, her back automatically leaning back against the wall. The streams of thoughts were starting to get to her, making her even more depressed than she already was. The tightening of her chest was getting even more painful by the second, whatever mantra she kept reciting no longer helped to strengthen her initial resolve.
A lone tear slid down her face, making its way down her porcelain face and through her armor and down her quivering body.
"Other people had had even darker childhoods. A friend of mine I trained with in the assassin's guild was an amnesiac orphan and an outcast all because he was thought to have been possessed by an evil spirit or born of the Dark Lord. Though he turned out as an assassin just like me, at least he wasn't as tainted. But still, there are people out there who were able to rise from a devastating fall, emerging with successful lives with clean- compared to us- reputations.
I am an assassin. We are the embodiments of sin, sin spawn. Mercenaries of death. It is our job to kill, whether for glory, money, or to uphold the balance, and do so without remorse. I've killed so many people that their sheer number can fill a house. But, truth be told, as this is my first and last confession, I feel regret in only two of my kills.
The young silver-haired thief dragged his feet against the sand. A maelstrom of thoughts ran in the pale-blue eyed boy's head. Part of him, primal instincts perhaps, screamed that he run away, flee to some other town and leave his family.
But no… he knew he shouldn't run away. What would happen to his mother if he did? He fully believed that, sometime in the near future, he would be welcomed home with a loving smile, a warm hug, and an affectionate pat on the back. He believed that his parents would finally give him the drug called love without any strings attached. At least, the masses he'd attended since he started four years ago mentioned that a mother's love was selfless.
How stupid, a thief believing in God. But then again, somebody had once said that religion is the opium of the poor. It provides relief, as his young mind understood it. Pitiful, a young mind already corrupted by social drugs.
The young thief continued his slow, monotonous trudge, walking through the same route he took on his way home. A familiar clinking sound alerted his senses. In the blink of an eye, his head shot from side to side, his ears desperately trying to decipher where that familiar sound of jingling gold was coming from. At last his pale blue orbs settled on a man about to round a corner towards a shady alley. He knew it was risky but he was desperate enough to do it.
Exhaling deeply, the thief followed the man with cat-like grace.
"Come out, messenger of death." The man spoke aloud. The thief patiently waited in the shadows by the corner, making quick peeks to see if the time for stealing was right.
"What is it you want, Wizard." A voice suddenly came from the shadows. The thief nearly squealed in surprise.
"I have a proposition to make, assassin." The man spoke, facing a particular shady area. He eyed it suspiciously then spoke. "Reveal yourself, sin."
"Very good, indeed." A body seemed to materialize out of the shadows. "But then again, I should've expected no less from you, Ian DeCroue, top graduate of Geffen's most prestigious wizardring school."
"Let's make this talk quick, assassin." The wizard became all business. "There is a couple I want you to take care of. I will gladly pay you ten thousand, five for each head. Do we have a deal?"
The eavesdropping thief's eyes bulged. 'T-t-t-ten thousand!'
"Ten thousand?" the assassin stated unfazed. "My average fee is fifty thousand per head."
'F-F-FIFTY THOUSAND PER HEAD!'
"I will not pay you one hundred thousand, assassin." The wizard stated definitely. "This couple isn't worth it."
The assassin merely walked passed the wizard with an air of confidence. "I don't care if they are or aren't worth it. As long as you won't pay the amount stated, I will refuse this assignment. However…" the sin stopped in front of the thief's hiding place, piercing eyes bore into the thief's own pale-blue. "There seems to be one here who is willing to accept."
The assassin left.
The boy was stumped. Him? Willing to kill? For money? Was he? It was a sin! It defied the Church! But then again… he had no money to bring home… and ten thousand was a lot… and he'd be loved….
The thief made up his mind. Stepping out of his hiding place, he faced the awaiting wizard.
"I…ah…I agree to um… to take the…ah…the assignment."
"Are you sure, boy?"
Second thoughts started racing but the need for money was getting stronger. Gaining more confidence, he replied.
I remember that day clearly. After all, every first is like immortality. That day was my first kill, my first manhunt with me posing as the hunter. It was also the fateful day that changed my life…and one of the kills I regret…
The silver-haired thief dropped his bloodied dagger, panting heavily. He killed…he actually killed…and he couldn't feel anything. He killed for money and he still couldn't feel the slightest bit of remorse! The thief stood unsteadily, not knowing whether he should be proud of his actions or not.
Sudden pains from various wounds brought him out of whatever musings his brooding made. He grabbed his dagger, severing the two heads and placing them in a sack. He slowly made his way out of the site, limping, not noticing the two pairs of eyes that overlooked his ordeal.
The assassin from before smiled and left, intending to report to the guild…
While the other, a female swordsman, fell on her knees and sobbed uncontrollably.
I was seven at the time. I met the wizard, Ian Decroue, in the same dark alley later. I got the money and, as usual, made my way home, albeit limping. Every step I took seemed even more painful than the last my heart couldn't feel anything. It was only a few weeks back, now that I think of it, that I started to regret that kill. Anyway, I arrived home near dawn already, and I was very surprised to see that my mom was waiting for m with puffy eyes and a reddish nose; she had been worried sick. I allowed myself a grin, that time, so happy that she actually cared. I thank you God, that time when she embraced me and cradled my head against her chest. And I thanked you once more when I handed her the money I earned. And I thanked you for the third time when all she did was clean my wounds and not ask where I got the money. For the first time in years, I truly felt like I was in heaven that day.
After that, I continued stealing. There were also times when the wizard, Ian, would hire me for another kill. I'd happily accept the offer, and I'd be even happier as soon as I arrived home. Of course, my parents would never know about this. They didn't need to know. They also didn't need to know that I was also hired by Ian's acquaintances that were rejected by that mysterious assassin.
It was on my birthday, two years after the incident, when I saw that sin once again.
The young thief whistled on his way home from an assignment by one of Ian's friends, beaming as he jingled the coins in his pocket. Today was his birthday and what better way to celebrate it than being showered by his mother's love? He already got over the post-kill guilt and depression ages ago. Because of this, the young boy already considered himself a pro. Plus, with all the money he gained today, he was sure to receive more of his mother's love than usual!
So why did he feel the cold tendrils of dread creeping in from each step he took closer home, he wondered. Upon his arrival home, he noticed the serious aura emanating from the kitchen.
"Um…I am ah…mah, I'm home…" the little boy gulped, entering the small room. He quickly noticed his parents sitting near the table accompanied by a strange yet familiar looking man.
"Ah…here's the boy right now." His father announced proudly, pointing a finger at the young thief moving towards his mother.
"Happy birthday, my child." His mother greeted lovingly, wiping a stray trail of blood running down the thief's cheek with back of her hand. The young boy, in turn, beamed brightly and quickly hugged his mother. He gave her the money but, to his disbelief, she just set it aside and enveloped him in a possessive hug.
"Ahem." The other man interrupted. "Back to the topic, I see potential in this boy, to do what is classified information, mind you, and I am willing to take the boy off your hands-"
"But I've already said-" the only female tried to interrupt but was silenced by her husband's hand on her shoulder.
"Let him continue." He instructed.
"As I was saying, I am even willing to pay you a large sum of money for him." The stranger concluded.
"Wh-what…?" the boy in question was utterly confused.
"How much?" the male rogue asked business-like.
"DEAR!" his wife gasped and tightened her hold on the boy.
"Five million zenny, no strings attached. Is that acceptable?"
"I'll agree if you make it six million." The rogue bargained.
"How about five fifty?"
"Five seventy-five, good fellow. Remember, I am losing my boy here." The rogue smiled back cheekily.
"Fine…" the other man sighed. "Five seventy-five. Here." He handed the greedy rogue a large bag of money.
"B-but…d-dear…" the female rogue pleaded.
"Don't worry!" the male rogue cheerfully comforted his wife. "I'm sure he's a good man… and we no longer need to take care of him and…" the male rogue took his wife's hand in his, pushing away the young thief, and smiled genuinely. "And it's about time the boy did something useful. From now on, you and I will both be very happy."
The woman turned her sights downward at the teary-eyed boy hugging her leg affectionately. "You're right…" she scooped the young boy in her arms and hugged him tightly. "My child, I'm sorry. It's already time to let go."
She placed a warm kiss on his forehead and set him down. "Go with this man." She nudged her son towards the stranger.
"Go, boy!" his father barked.
"Come here." The stranger motioned the boy with his hand. It was then that the thief finally realized who owned that pair of cold, soul-churning eyes.
"Go now." His mother commanded. Her face suddenly softened and she continued in a hushed tone. "Please go."
Hours later, the assassin-in-disguise and the platinum blonde thief were trudging their way out of the desert city.
"Boy, what is your name?"
I arrived in the assassin's guild a day later. Every step I took away from the city, those cursed daggers stabbed me. It numbed me all the way. And that didn't change until the second week into the guild.
As soon as I stepped in, the brutal training began. Every time after an exercise, I'd feel like dying. The whole training screamed torture. I was told that we were trained as a different kind of assassins…the perfect killers. We were supposed to be able to fail at least one out of five hundred suicidal missions. And that's how part of the training began. We were tasked with one hundred suicide missions from hired customers and we were supposed to fail only one. Those lowlifes… paying us just to fulfill their sadistic pleasures.
There were also other kids like me, trained to be the perfect killers. Prodigies of Death, we were called; children doing professional assassin jobs. Imagine my surprise to see girls there, eyes bloodshot and lifeless or cold and heartless. But then again, there was no such thing as man or woman in the guild, there was even no such thing as human. Only harbingers of death…
I use to sob every night, wanting my mother; after all, I was only nine when I entered. There was no remorse in the training. In between missions, we were given harsh exercises. There was no such thing as affection; I used to believe, because we were all supposed to have the hearts of a mercenary. Those feelings made me consider running away.
And that's when she came and brought with her light.
"Hey, baby boy, you're gonna bawl, sniff, and cry." A young brunette girl stated plainly.
"I'm not!" Taryn glared, building up an intimidating front. Weaknesses in the guild were never good. Too exploitable.
"I knew it. One of the top students is just a measly cry baby." She continued.
"Take that back!" he barked, his hand unconsciously snaked its way to his stiletto.
"Why?" the girl asked indignantly. She didn't seem to notice the way he was glaring or the hand grasping a hilt. "What're you gonna do, run home to mommy?"
"Don't you dare involve her in this!" he hissed back. One more… just one more…
"It seems I have hit a nerve…" her voice suddenly became a little bit softer. "Are you… well?"
"What's it to you!" he growled, drawing his stiletto into a battle ready stance.
"Ah…" her eyes grew a bit then suddenly narrowed as if she was thinking. She bit her lip, clearly shocked by his outburst. "…sorry." She said quickly.
"What…?" the pale blue eyed youth dropped his stance, confused by her sudden change in mood.
"I said 'sorry' okay tear-boy! Some people… Yeesh!" the black haired preteen repeated exasperatedly. She rubbed her forehead with her palm then turned around, ready to stomp away.
"Hey you, wait a sec!" the male thief quickly grabbed her hand.
"What!" she quickly snatched her hand from him then glared hard.
"Spit it out already!"
"Wanna be friends?"
"Humph." The girl folded her arms and started to think. Tentatively, she unfolded her arms and tried her best to suppress her smile.
"Call me Fai."
I was nearing ten when I met my first love. Fyer Trasker was a stubborn girl who couldn't express her feelings well. She tended to act tough and, most of the time, say the wrong things. I'm sure it was due to her childhood upbringing. Damn her bastard of a father. That was also one of the reasons why she kept on flinching whenever a male touched her. It took me a long time to be able to touch her without having her recoil or wince. But it was well worth it. She loved me dearly as I, her. We both were happy, basking in each other's love and our friend's company. Though Fai and me were still young at the time, we both were able to identify the emotions because of our backgrounds.
We already knew what love felt like…
"Hey, she-flinch." A male's voice called out, his bluish-silver hair glittering in the sunlight. The girl turned towards the approaching boy and fixed him with a powerful glare. "Humph, don't get cute with me, girl, coz you ain't even my type."
"Yeah, you the almighty, too cool for any girl." She remarked sarcastically. "What do you want, grass-eyes? I doubt you graced me with your presence just to say how beautiful I am."
"Got that right, flinchy." The boy stopped in front of her and stared. "The last mission. You almost failed."
"Thank you mister up-to-date. That last mission was like only three weeks ago." She attempted to dodge the question. Seeing he wasn't about to give up, she continued. "Besides, that mission was for two. We did have partners."
"Yeah, you and the great lover boy." He sighed. "Listen, Fai, I'm just worried. If you don't meet the guild's expectations, you're toast."
"I know that."
"So you better be more careful."
"Easy for you to say, you're not like us 'chosen'."
"Which is exactly why you have to do better than me. I'm even older than you. You make me look bad."
"Humph, not me anyway."
"FAI!" another male voice cut through their conversation. The two turned to see a silver haired individual jump off a ledge to land between them. "Fai, glad I found you."
"Hey Ter." She acknowledged, smiling at the boy.
"How're things going, lover boy."
"Nice to see you too, Kaize." Taryn nodded at the older sin-in-training.
"Yeah." Kaize replied. He turned to leave. "I'll leave you two lover-kids for now. Got to find ol' weird-eyes. Talk to you later, lover-boy, and say hi to the mute twins for me." And with that, the emerald eyed fifteen-year old left the pre-teen couple.
"So…" Fai started. "What?"
"Umm… wanna go to the roof?"
"Fine." Her voice seemed mad yet it had an underlying tone of happiness.
"We're here." She stated plainly. They both sat down by the ledge of the roof, staring at the vast expanse of never-ending sand across the water around the guild.
"Yeah…" Taryn sat down close to her, shyly lifting his arm to loop around her shoulders. Fyer saw his attempt then smiled. She leaned her head onto his shoulder and sighed happily; he was the only man whom she'd fully allow to hold her in such an intimate position. Taryn blink-blinked then smiled, wrapping his arm around her shoulder, pulling her closer.
"Are you okay?" his voice broke their short silence.
"Hmm?" She pulled away slightly so she could look at his face.
"I mean… that last mission…"
"Oh that." She stated, annoyed. "Kaize was also whining his ass off bout that."
"Really? What did he say?"
"He said I made him look bad, not that he already is." Taryn raised an eyebrow. "That and to be careful."
"I have to agree with him on this one. You do have to be more careful."
"Well excuse me mister top student but I'm not exactly the fighting type. Remember, I poisoned my father, not stab him." She pulled away from him and brought her legs closer to her chest, wrapping her arms around them. Seeing his discouraged look, she sighed and unwrapped her legs. "Listen, I'm sorry about that last mission. So I got a little bit careless, big deal. You were there to save me and I survived. That mission was for two anyway and you know it."
"Yes, but you could've seen that attack. Why didn't you attempt to block?"
"Feh, I survived, happy? If it makes you feel any better, I promise to be more careful next time."
"Fai…" he placed her hand in his and stared into her violet eyes. The wind blew, making her shoulder length black hair sway in the Morroc wind. "I'm not saying I'm mad or disappointed in you. I'm just worried. If the guild finds out, who knows what will happen to us?"
"'Us'? Ter, that sounds so much like we're a couple." She stated satirically with a hint of amusement.
"Aren't we?" Taryn replied confusedly.
"Well… a couple would kiss each other senselessly. So far we haven't done that so we aren't a couple yet." She pointed out with a blush.
"Wait a sec, you want me to kiss you?" Taryn blinked then blushed.
"Hey! Don't get any ideas! I didn't say that!"
"So you don't want me to?"
"I didn't say that either…" the violet eyed brunette mumbled, her blush matching the color of a rogue's upper clothing.
"Hmmm…" Taryn suddenly grinned. "Fumpkin Fai…" He teased. Lavender eyes narrowed menacingly at his smirking face.
"What! And didn't I tell you not to…mmph…mmm."
"So how did that feel?" asked a tomato red Taryn as he pulled away from their kiss. He smiled at her red face, eyes still closed as if expecting another kiss. Tentatively, she opened her eyes to reveal beautiful sparkling lavender orbs. Her eyes tried its best to glare menacingly as she forced herself not to smile from ear to ear.
"Th-that was…u-uncalled f-for…" she stuttered.
"So…are you gonna punish me?" Taryn gave her the cute-puppy-that-got-kicked eyes.
She finally succumbed as she beamed and wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him closer. Seeing his questioning look, she answered.
"Turnabout is only fair play, you know."
That happened when I was twelve years old. We were happy, Fai and me. We would sneak up to the roofs at midnight, talking about our life's experiences and dreams, our pasts and futures and more promises under the moon. It was times like that when people tend to live in the illusion that things would actually last forever.
But the guild's rules tore us apart. A year later, I experienced those familiar invisible daggers of hated.
Once more, I cried.
"H-hey! Get you hands off me!" the silver haired teen shouted angrily at the large man dragging him towards the guild master's room. "I said let go!"
"Keep quiet." The man finally said. "The guild master wants to see you."
"About what!" Taryn snapped back, trying to free his arm.
"About how you broke the most important rule in the guild."
"What! I didn't break anything!"
"We'll see." The man pushed the doors open, pushing the boy forward. "Master, this is the boy I told you about."
"So this is young Taryn…" a man sitting on a throne observed. "Last I saw you, you were but a petty thief."
"What the hell am I doing here!" Taryn asked impatiently, glaring at the older man.
"Direct to the point, eh?" the man seemed amused. "Just like that girl."
"TARYN!" the platinum haired teen's head snapped to the direction of that well-known voice.
"FAI!" There, on the platform, stood his chained lover, bloody with a man that had an executioner's axe by his side. The teen panicked. "LET HER GO!"
Taryn bolted towards her location. Two assassins suddenly grabbed both his arms, restraining the pale blue-eyed teen from reaching Fyer.
"Let me go! What the hell are you planning to do to her!" Taryn frantically screamed. He turned towards the guild master. "Let her go right now!"
"Let us go you bastards!" Fai willed her already abused body to pull on her restraints.
"You see, Taryn, this is the rule you have broken." The guild master ignored Fyer's shouts. "You have shown a clear weakness in this guild. We have clearly instructed that all such type of weaknesses must be eliminated."
"I DIDN'T SHOW ANY WEAKNESS!"
"Then what's with the extra effort on your missions with this young lady? What's with the extra heroics? Why are you acting this way?" the high assassin suddenly became serious. "In this guild, we must try to avoid showing clear weaknesses. If you are incapable of eliminating such weaknesses, we will do it for you."
"Why not me!" the silver shrieked, doubling his efforts to free himself from his restrainers. Another assassin came to hold him from moving forward. "Let her live! Kill me instead! I'm also her weakness!"
"But you are one of our top students." The old man replied calmly. "Although she is brilliant in creating deadly venoms, that sort of skill may be taught to any of the mage classes. Further more, her combat capabilities are only that of an average assassin unlike yours. In conclusion, you are more useful than her."
"You…damn you bastard!" the pale blue teen thrashed even harder. The guild master noticed that the three assassins restraining him were having a hard time with each passing second.
"Interesting…Taryn Laike, this is a lesson for you. You are among the chosen so we expect so much from you." the old man turned to the executioner. "It is time."
"NO!" Taryn started to flail even harder, trying to shove the three sins keeping him down. A lone tear slid down his frantic face.
"T-Taryn!" Fai shouted as she was forced onto the floor. Small crystalline tears slid down her face as she resigned herself to her fate. "I'm sorry, Taryn."
"Let go of me!" The young teen managed to free one arm. He smashed his elbow against the face of the assassin behind him, grabbed his stiletto, then stabbing the arm of the other assassin holding him, and slashing the chest of the assassin trying to get hold of his arm again. Once free, he sped up towards Fai.
"LET HER GO YOU BASTARD!"
"Taryn…" Fai forced herself to smile as the executioner raised his axe above her head. "I was so happy…" Fyer Trasker put on the most beautiful smile she could muster, knowing this would be the last time. "I love you…"
"FYER!" time seemed to slow down as the executioner's axe descended upon her neck, the sickening sound of blade against flesh and the deafening pumping of his heart in his ears the only thing he could hear as a head flew in the air.
He caught the bloody yet still beautiful raven maned head. He slowly, tremblingly, wiped the tears off her cheeks. The smiling, peaceful tearstained expression on her face was all he needed.
He cried, pressing the head closer to his chest, his tears bathing her raven hair.
I was thirteen when she died. God, she was still young when you took her. She was only twelve! But at least, I hope you're taking good care of her…
I think… I still love her…"
She gasped, her eyes wide. He still loves her? That thought ran through her mind. Were all those times they spent together…did he just see her? She shook her head, trying to get out of that train of thought.
She brought up her weapon, still clutched in her right hand. She saw how miserable her reflection was. Her hair framed her head; her eyes puffy red, her cheeks tear stricken… she spent so much time crying. Her heart ached…
Suddenly, she saw another face in her blade. It was still hers yet not.
She slammed her armored fist on the concrete wall.
She saw a pitiful, little girl deprived of her childhood affection. That little girl stared at her pleadingly, as if asking her not to continue with her original intentions…
Then she saw another face, filled with rage. Rage at him for what he had done. Rage at him for what he has done. And rage at herself for what she might do. Her reflection shone eyes of fire, the burning desire for revenge threatening to outweigh her mercy.
All the years of mourning, those long months of careful planning with him, those days spent training hard with her sword, and those painful weeks of loving, the end result was also hers to decide.
She stared those fiery eyes squarely, trying to incite the familiar red aura. Another mantra was made.
"…I remember mentioning that I was the son of two runaway rogues. I'm sorry. Almost every assassin doesn't deserve any pity. I don't deserve any pity. We, sins, have at least one kill we regret. That's why each of us has a so-called tragic past…
"This is your final mission. After this kill, you don't have to return here. You're already a top assassin." The guildsman gave the young silver haired assassin a scroll.
"My mother…! You want me to kill my mother!" Taryn shouted. "No way!"
"Why not? She sold you, didn't she?" the other assassin stated.
"I don't care if she sold me or not!" he barked angrily. "You've already taken Fai two years ago, isn't that enough!"
"…Very well." The man turned to leave. "if you can't kill your mother, at least kill your father. This is for your own good."
"Wh-what do you…?"
But he already left.
"There he is…" the platinum haired assassin found his target. Currently, he was perched on top of a low roof, hidden in the shadows, waiting for his father to come out. It had been so many years, six in act, when he last saw the face he loathed so much, but he couldn't forget it. "So far so good." He observed. His mother was nowhere in sight so he assumed she wasn't home. That meant his prey was all by himself. Perfect. Placing his sakkat on his head, he leapt off the roof to land a few meters away from his father.
"Mister Laike." Taryn addressed the rogue in a cool voice. The man addressed turned, damascus at the ready, and glared at the shadowy intruder.
"What is it that you want, assassin?" the rogue took up a fighting stance as he saw the intruder equip his katars.
"Isn't it obvious? I'm here for your life." The young assassin sped forward, clearing their distance in mere seconds.
Taryn made a quick dart with his left hand, managing to stab the rogue's shoulder lightly. He suddenly twisted to the left, using the momentum as an extra force, right hand stretched to cut the spinal cord of his opponent, intending to end the fight quickly. The outstretched arm was caught by the rogue who used his attackers momentum for a shoulder throw, slamming the sin on the ground. As soon as the assassin's body hit the ground, said rogue gripped the same arm with both hands, tossing the intruder towards the opposite wall.
Taryn righted himself in midair so that his legs would touch the wall first. He propelled himself back into the fray, spinning as he glided through the air towards the surprised rogue, both katars stretched.
"You're pretty good, kid, I'll give you that." The rogue held his bleeding arm with his right hand as more blood seeped out of his other numerous slash marks. "Guess all those flashy moves aren't just for show."
"Talk all you want, old man, cause when I'm through, you'll be begging!" Taryn appeared uninjured as he charged again but wasn't quick enough.
"We'll see about that, kid." The rogue disappeared. The assassin leapt high into the air, doing an extra flip to land farther away from the battle site and closer to the shadows. As soon as his feet touched the ground, he, too, disappeared.
"You think that's wise boy? I have unlimited space unlike you." The rogue's voice boomed in the surroundings. "Well, I can see you. Can you see me?"
The assassin bit down his remark. Any sound he'd make might be used against him. After all, the rogue was right. He could only hide in the shadows.
"Aww…what's this?" the rogue taunted. "Can't speak?" the pale blue eyed sin strained his ears hared. "Cat got your tongue?"
"There!" his mind shouted. Large spikes suddenly appeared on the ground, rushing towards the rogue's hiding spot. The assassin did a triangle flip into the air, moving in sync with the spikes.
Though he couldn't see it, he knew the male rogue dodged to the right, in the exact same spot Taryn was predicted he would be.
"Die old ma-" his left shoulder screamed as an arrow imbedded itself into it. The sin fell in a heap on the ground. He slowly stood up, pulling the arrow out of his system and tossing it away, as he saw his father reappear with a familiar woman right beside him.
"Are you okay?" he heard the female rogue ask her husband worriedly. Seeing him nod, she turned to the intruder and glared daggers at the sakkat wearing individual. "Who sent you?"
"…" Taryn couldn't reply, still shocked that his mother was standing there, right in front of him, her bow aimed at his head. Taryn unconsciously took a step forward and stopped as an arrow whizzed by his cheek. "M-mom…"
"What…?" the female rogue asked, caught off guard by the reply. The male rogue, however, took the opportunity with haste.
"COVER ME!" he made a mad dash at the sin. The latter, in turn, reacted on honed instinct, mimicking the dash with a katar raised. Just as he was about to bring it down, another arrow struck his arm followed by his chest being smashed against the charging rogue's buckler. The fray started once again.
Before the sin's body could touch the ground, his uninjured hand planted itself on the ground, flinging its owner the side to avoid the upcoming dagger, pulling the arrow out of his arm in the process. He did another flip into the air, narrowly avoiding getting struck by another arrow. He brought up both of his katars to deflect two more incoming arrows, wincing as more blood erupted from his numerous bleeding wounds. He landed a fair distance away from his target as more arrows flew towards him. He sped forward, dodging and deflecting the projectiles as he went, trying to kill the target before more complications occurred.
The male rogue brought up his buckler, hiding his damascus. Taryn, expecting a hidden strike, was caught off guard as his father slammed his buckler against his chest. A familiar tingling came and he automatically brought his injured arm to parry the hidden follow up slash. Being injured, he was only able to block the slash and not the force; this was proven as he was flung backwards. Another tingling came, this time the sin's body bent backwards, slamming into the ground due to the lightheadedness brought by blood loss, as two arrows flew by him, one cutting his cheek while another hit his sakkat. His body landed with a loud thud similar to a thrown rag doll except this was a bloody excuse for a person.
His breath heavy, body bleeding, he pushed himself off the ground and his mother finally recognized the face of the attacker as another arrow struck his chest, making stagger backwards as he pulled it out with his remaining good arm. Her heart broke into a million pieces. Her son, her sweet, loving son and only child, the same boy that she sold because of her selfishness stood there in front of her, covered with blood just like the many times he returned home. And now…now everything made sense. He killed just to keep them alive those many years ago. Wounds like that and the almost haunted eyes were made in a struggle for survival. Why hadn't she noticed this before?
Taryn staggered forward, trying to right his footing. His senses flared and a flash of red later he was hurled once more into the air. He landed with the grace of a rag doll. He struggled to stand, coughing out some blood while more streamed from his wounds. He saw his father charge again, this time his damascus was pointed at him.
The silver-haired sin's body screamed at its owner. Why wasn't he listening? He'd been in assassinations before and he knew the rules…and why did he keep pushing his body to stand? Why wouldn't he fight harder? He knew that he was going to die if he didn't do anything. He knew he was bleeding profusely. He knew his left arm probably wouldn't work as well as it should after this battle…if ever he survived. And he knew that, subconsciously, he was allowing this to happen…just like those long years of pain he experienced in his childhood…it somehow felt…natural, with his mom just watching there, letting his pain happen. His father was closing in on him fast…was he going to die? He could just disappear. He could just block with his right hand. His mind already thought of fifty ways to counter. And none of them would be executed…all because of his mother and the trauma she brought… he couldn't think anymore…
Taryn closed his eyes as the male rogue was just a few meters away. His ears picked up a gasp followed by the familiar sound of metal against flesh. He opened his eyes wide and brought up his right arm to catch the falling slender form of his mother. The added weight forced them both to the ground with a thud.
"M-mom?" her eyes were shut painfully, her breathing labored. Beside them was his father's corpse, an arrow jutting out from the left side of his chest and one from his forehead. His nose detected the all-so familiar irony scent and brought up his right arm to see blood. Her blood. His eyes widened and his heart started to pound painfully against his chest. It was the Fyer Trasker scenario all over again. "Mom!"
The woman groaned and coughed out more blood. Taryn didn't know what to do…the damascus jutting out of her chest was at a dangerous position. If he pulled, she would bleed to death in less than thirty seconds.If he moved her, the dagger might cut an internal organ if not her heart. He was brought out of his thoughts as she coughed once more. Her eyes opened, albeit painfully, as her sea blue met her son's pale azure.
"You…came…back…" she extended her hand to wipe a stray tear that slid down his cheek. "You…needn't…cry...my son…" she coughed out more blood. "I'm…so happy…I knew you'd…return…"
"M-mom…" Taryn cupped her hand and pressed it softly against his face as if trying to keep her warm. "Please…" the sin pleaded. "Please…don't speak…"
"Don't bother…I won't last…anyway…" she smiled sadly as her eyes drifted to her husband's dead body. "I killed him…"
"Why do you love him so much!" Taryn nearly screamed, more tears streaming down his cheeks. His grip tightened around his shoulders until he realized he was hurting her even more. "Why…?"
"Why do you…love me…then…?" she gave her son a kind smile through blood red lips. "Our reasons…are the same…unconditional…"
"But what about me…?"
She paused, as if to think. "I know that…I haven't been…a good… mother…I'm sorry…"
"I'm the one that should be sorry!" his anger flared. Ignoring his mom coughing out more blood, he continued. "If I hadn't been so weak…if I'd have been stronger you wouldn't be like this!"
"It's not… your…fault…" her coughs became more violent as her breathing slowed. "At least…I did something…a …mother…should…do…"
"D-don't speak…" his voice was already shaking. He pressed her icy hand harder against his cheek. "Please…mah…I love you…"
"I love you…too…" he saw her taking great intakes of air; she was having a hard time. She forced her droopy eyes open. "I'm…glad…"
"M-mah…?" she wiped away a stray trail of blood running down his face.
"You…grew…up…to be…so…beautiful…" she closed her eyes and smiled.
"Mom…?" her grip on his hand faded and he panicked. "Mom! MOM!" he shook her shoulders as hard as he could. She still wasn't moving…wasn't breathing! "MOM!" he started to shout.
"Leave the dead alone. Let them rest in peace." A man melded out of the shadows. Taryn's head shot up as he recognized the figure. It was the same assassin that gave him this assignment.
"You knew…didn't you?" he gently lay his mother down on the ground then stood. He glared murderously at the newcomer. "You knew she was gonna die, didn't you!"
"Yes. I did know."
"Damn it, why!" he rushed at the elder and make a reckless slash. His right arm was caught and Taryn found himself pinned to the ground. "Damn you bastard!"
"If you survive this test, you are a true assassin." The elder applied pressure on his arm till he heard an audible pop followed by signifying the dislocation of Taryn's right arm. The latter gritted his teeth. "This is the final test. The haunting."
"The man left the broken teen, bleeding and mourning the death of his remaining loved one and cursing the heartlessness of the assassin's guild. Slowly, he lfted himself from the ground with his bleeding left arm, tears still streaming down his grief-struckface. With a hole in his heart, a numb body, and a shell of what he once was, he popped his right arm back and proceeded to bury his mother.
I was fifteen when I was truly orphaned. This is why we assassins don't deserve any pity. We brought that so-called 'tragic past' upon ourselves, killing the one we hold dear to us one way or another."
Author's Rants: Please…somebody…be at least a bit confused? Feel free to ask questions, I'll try my best to answer. Here's an apology in advance in case you might think of killing me for an update (or just want to kill me ).
So…there you have it. Official end to chapter one. So, how was it? Comments on the fight scene against the parents would be very much appreciated. As stated above, feel free to as questions.