Becoming the Beast
T: some mature themes, though nothing truly major. Rated mostly for language. No sex. Rating is subject to change.
This story is a bit dark, but I figured it had to be dark in order to properly handle the personality involved. Remember to review, constructive criticism absolutely welcomed and wanted.
This evening a little girl disappeared. Her mother lived in a small house in the docks. The little girl was the result of one night between the mother and a sailor passing through. And then he took to the blue seas again and never said goodbye.
And now the little girl is gone.
I will find her. I'll tear the docks apart, plank by plank, tear it apart and search through the ashes until I've found the little thing and brought her home. And those who took her I will tear apart until there is nothing left and they will know what true pain is, and they will know what its like to hurt and to beg for mercy.
I'm sure they've seen it so many times before: a victim, frozen, fearful, small, crying to god, crying to everything, for help, for compassion, and they kill them with their cruel hand in the coldest of blood…the gentle, ugly trickle staining cobblestone red...their sin marked forever in the streets.
When I find them I will stain the ground a bright, bright red, so that everyone can see where justice had been served. Sweet, beautiful justice.
In streets covered of filth, bad people in the dust, I'll walk forever until nothing is left but the beautiful and good.
My sister once said, "Those are dangerous words, Kaiyel. What if you become the villain yourself? What if you become bad? You can fight monsters; tear each and every one apart, until the only monster left is you."
"Then I'll kill myself with my own sword and the world will be cleansed."
"I beg you to stop this. Please, please repent. Selune can always accept more followers…no matter what."
"Have you even bothered setting foot in the docks?"
"Why does it matter?"
"Because then you'd understand and see. It's easy to live in your gilded tower, seeing nothing of evil. But try wading amongst scum and see how it changes you, Issildra."
She had no answer.
Issildra is supposedly a beauty, with her black hair and big, blue eyes; a regular doll. I don't care about physical beauty; it does nothing for anyone. Oh, but everyone says she is beautiful without knowing—truly knowing—that beauty is a weak, weak thing; like a flower, shining at its peak in summer, dying in the harshness of winter.
But she loves Selune purely with fervor I haven't seen her give to anyone else. It's probably why she took a vow of chastity…but it is fitting for her. She never has been interested in the carnal, seems to never be tempted by the base, the crude, always on a high, high pedestal…
My mother is beautiful too. They're all so beautiful. But what do they say of me? "A…rough looking woman." Sometimes they call me a monster, a hulking beast not fit for womanhood.
"What a shame…she's wasting her child-bearing years."
I don't need children, or love, or romance. I wouldn't bring a brat into this idiot world for anything. My womb will stay cold and barren for as long as I live, devoid of life, unused, until it shrivels up. Life will never pass through me…I shall be empty of it, empty of my own womanhood, as I put all my energy into my sword arm. Until the very end. It's just the way of things for people like me.
I don't need my womanhood anyway.
"But children can be a gentling experience," my mother had said once. She looked at me through her thin eyelashes, her eyes a deep, endless brown. They always said my mother had the sadness of many weary years in her eyes; it was what was so enchanting about her, apparently.
"I'm sure," I said.
"It could change you for the better."
"Yes, so I become docile, with no thought in my mind but a damn brat, who I'll bring up in this ugly, wretched world. Take your damned 'change' and send it to hell."
"All right. You win. But something needs to change. I fear for you."
How many children would I have to bear, anyway, to make up for all the bodies I've left behind me? I suppose fifty or so. That's far too many for any woman to handle, even me. I'd rather allow other women to have children to make up for the many lives I've taken.
I have contacts. You don't work in a place like the docks for long without them. There are so many hidden crevices, so many rocks for scum to hide under that sometimes you need someone there who can prod you to just the right place.
One contact told me where the little girl might be, so I followed his instructions to a broken house, made of timbers rotting, the roof falling in, the windows curtained. I tried turning the knob, but it would not turn. So I kicked the door in.
Inside I saw darkness and heard nothing.
"Why did you have to come back?" came a voice. It was a little voice, fit for a little girl, fearful, cowering, a voice made shrill by fright. "Leave me alone, leave me alone, leave me alone, leave me—" and the words chocked on broken sobs. It seemed as if the sadness was as deep as the dark, as pitiful, as sad.
"Who?" I said.
My voice must have been new to her, for I heard scrambling. "Help me, help me."
"I'm right here."
"I can't find you! Oh…" I heard her little body plop to the ground and the sobs wrack her body.
Following the sobs, I gently crouched and held my hand to the ground, trying to feel for her. I came across her soon enough. "Stand up."
She stood, shaking as if a little earthquake were inside her.
"Are you all right?" I said.
"H-he's going to send me to s-slavers."
"No, he's not."
you with him?"
"I'm a guardsman."
"You're here to help?"
She threw herself at me and set her tears on my shoulder. "I want a hug…"
I-I-the little thing seemed so sad and small, like a wounded bird. I put an arm around her, but didn't let her cry long. There was no telling when he'd be back.
"Now do as I say. Go into that corner over there and stay quiet as a mouse. No matter what happens, don't speak."
She scampered away.
And I stood in the middle of the room, covered by darkness, watching the door and waiting, waiting, for the first sign of movement. Light streamed through the open doorway ahead of me, white and gold.
And there he was, standing, entering into the place, coming closer to the darkness.
"Hello, little girl," he said. "I'm taking you to some people who would like to see—"
The moment he came into the darkness, I was upon him, my hand on his neck, my other gripping his hair, pulling, pulling as if I was ripping his scalp off.
There was a gasp; I know the sound of fear, of shock. And so I knew why he sputtered unintelligibly and didn't struggle, why his first words were a cry to some god he didn't deserve to even know.
I cut him through. I spared the world another piece of filth. I wiped out the scum clean. I hope the gods don't forgive him. I want to see the bastard in hell.
"You can come out," I said. I heard soft footsteps across the floor. A couple times I heard a fall. But she came over and clung to me.
"Why'd he scream? Why?"
"I'm taking you home to your mother."
"The scream? Why? Where'd he go? What?"
"People scream. Now go home."
Her hand must have felt the blood, for she cried "It's blood!"
"I'm so scared," she said. As she retreated into the light I could see her widened eyes, set in her child's face, but filled with a fear too strong for any child to feel. "You're an orc. A monster. Don't hurt me." She broke down and all came pouring forth as fresh tears.
"Just go. Your mother's worried."
She left as fast as she probably could, sparing me no glance.
I didn't care. Thank you's are useless in the long run, anyway. I don't want them and people can stuff them. I want JUSTICE. For there is one thing that matters: the scum had been cleaned out.
I left the house, leaving my mark behind, red upon the house's floor, of justice that had been served.
There will be more of this story.