~Chapter 14: ERROR~
Am I broken?
But I still want to breathe
Can you see it?
Like my dreams,
Finals words are stuck
"Sebastian is surely to be a strong demon in the future. He is a prodigy!" Mother says happily to Father as I watch from where I sit on the rug in the room. I'm only four, meaning Sebastian was fourteen at the time.
"Yes, if only we had two prodigies instead of this disgusting thing!" Father snaps and turns his attention to me. His foot swings back, then straight towards my gut.
The pain is excruciating. I gasp loudly, causing blood to fly out of my mouth and onto the carpet. My small body slams against the wall before falling onto the ground. I just lie there in pain and cough up more blood. He hit me so hard.
Mother sighs. "Look at her. She's staining my precious carpets." she walks over to me and grabs me by the back of my now stained blue dress. Mother continues to hold me like that as she walks down to the basement. Finally, she let's me go, but only to throw me across the basement into one of the cement walls.
I cry out in pain this time, a huge mistake Sebastian has told me countless times not to do.
"Oh, you screamed? So that's painful to you? Pathetic!" Mother shouts and walks over to me. She grabs me by the front of my dress this time and holds me up in the air. "You should be able to take much more pain! Disgusting!"
Mother bashes me into the floor as sinister chuckles leave her smirking lips. Her hot pink eyes are just as evil as she stares down at me.
"It truly disgusts me that you were born with my eyes. I hate it!" she growls and reaches for one of my eyes.
I shut my eyes tight and shake my head. Father has already taken an eye out and I don't want to go through the pain again.
"Stop! Mother, stop!" I cry.
"Silence!" she screams and forces my eyes open so she can rip the left one out.
I bite my tongue hard to control the scream I so desperately want to let out. Mother laughs and flicks my eyeball away.
"Now for the other one," she mutters.
No. No more. I don't want this anymore!
"Enough. She is not worth the trouble anymore," Father says, seeming to appear out of nowhere.
Mother nods and gets away from me. "You are right. I can not believe I wasted some of my energy on her."
They both leave me in the basement and go back upstairs. I curl into a tight ball as they shut the door behind them and even lock it. Not good. I screamed out twice. Mother and Father get angrier when I do so. Sebastian told me not to scream, but I did, now they're going to leave me here for a few days.
I cry silently as I struggle to create a new eye. Since I'm only four, I haven't mastered the spell yet and it still takes me a lot of time to regenerate.
Hours must have gone by as I sat there, because my eye was starting to feel dry and weird and I was starting to feel tired. Sebastian told me I can't go to sleep like this. He said I need to regenerate first or else I might not wake up.
But . . . Maybe it'll be good to just die. Mother and Father would be happy that way, and I won't feel anymore pain . . .
I gasped, my eyes flying open. There were tears in the corner of my eyes, most likely caused by me remembering that time. I sat up in bed and let myself finish crying.
"I'm scared," I whimpered when a sudden gust of wind came through my room. I gasped and glanced at the window that was open. "Who opened that?" I asked and went to close it. As I did, I noticed something shimmer in the moonlight in the corner of my eye. I glanced down and gasped.
A silver . . . pocket watch.
I reached down for it and held it tightly to my chest, a single chuckle escaping my lips.
"I'M NOT A TOOL!" I shouted and threw a glass vase at Break's head, unfortunately, he dodged it. "I am not some tool you can just use! We already got Oz back, so my job is done!" Break promised me that once Oz was back, I could sit back and relax here at the Reinsworth house for as long as I wish. Now he wants to use me again!
"No, it is far from over," he said and chuckled.
"But . . . But what am I needed for now?"
"You are connected to many things, Claudia-kun. You will become useful, very useful, in the future."
I growled and glared.
"As a demon, you witness many things over the years, which also connects you to many things. Claudia Michaelis, no, Mary Baskerville, witnessed many things living with the Baskervilles."
"Yeah, but I never saw anything bad, like you would think," I said and crossed my arms over my chest. "Glen kept me away from all of that."
"But you were around them. Raised by them. Even if you don't notice it, you share some of their instincts," Break said and chuckled before popping a lollipop into his mouth. I got a glimpse of the wrapper and chuckled cruelly to myself. It was a lollipop made by the Funtom company, what a coincidence.
"Instincts he says," I whispered under my breathe and shook my head. "So I'm being forced to stay here?"
"I suppose you could say that, Claudia-kun~."
"Fine. As long as you continue to let me use the records you have on the tragedy one-hundred years ago."
"Actually, I have bad news about that, I'm afraid," Break said and frowned. Oh, crap. When Break frowns, it's never a good thing.
"Bad news?" I asked.
He nodded. "It seems you will not be able to use the records anymore."
"What? Why?" I shouted. "You promised me access!"
"Yes, but things came up," he said simply and shrugged his shoulders.
"What things?" I hissed.
"Unbelievable!" I shouted and stormed out of the room. "DUMB CLOWN!"
I walked out into the garden and sat by a rose bush. I can't believe this! Damn Break! He has a hunch about me, maybe? But how? I've been so careful as to not trigger him, but maybe he's sharper than I thought. Damn albino.
I reached into my shirt and pulled out the silver pocket watch. Just staring at it made my heart flutter and images of him flooded my brain, even though I tried so much to lock him away into the deepest place in my mind.
It disgusted me.
I placed the watch back into my shirt. Damn it. Why do I still feel this way towards him? He doesn't give a damn about me! He showed it when he slept with that nun. I need to stop these emotions and move on. I need to give him up! I won't even think his name, no matter how many times his image comes to mind. I hate him! I hate him! I hate him!
I sighed and got back to my feet. Might as well pay a few friends a visit. I wonder how Gilbert's doing after Oz found out who he really was. I hope he's okay. That little boy . . . No, he's a grown man now.
I chuckled. "But he's still afraid of cats."
"Oi! Open up!" I said as I knocked on Gilbert's apartment door. "It's Claudia!"
Gilbert opened the door and sighed. "You just missed Break."
"Eh? Break was here?" I asked.
"You didn't know?"
I shook my head and stepped into the house. I glanced around. A small bouquet of red roses lie on the coffee table while Oz and Alice sat on the couch.
"Eh? It's what's-her-face," Alice said.
"My name's Claudia," I informed and placed my hands on my hips. "Don't forget it, got it?"
"Don't boss me around!" Alice shouted.
"Then learn to remember other people's names!" I shouted back, but inside I was laughing. We were bickering over something dumb, just like old times. It filled me with nostalgia and glee.
"Now, now," Oz chuckled and separated Alice and I. This also gave me déjà vu, and also filled me with a bit of sorrow. When Alice and I would argue, either Glen or Jack would break us up. Oz doing it reminded me of that.
Alice and I huffed and turned away from one another, our arms crossed over our chests as we glared off into the distance.
"Oi, Claudia, we were just going out to the markets, are you coming?" Gilbert asked.
I nodded. "I guess," I mumbled. "Let's go!"
We all left into the city. The bustling city. Luckily, Break had me out the house so much, I actually was a bit used to being in crowds. I had managed to teach myself how to block out most of the thoughts around me, but I was still working on blocking everyone out.
"Oz! Oz! That man is selling meat over there!" Alice called and ran in front of Oz.
"What? What? You want to eat?" Oz asked cheerfully and chuckled.
Alice clutched the front of his shirt and blushed slightly as she puffed her cheeks out. "I want . . . To eat."
"No," Gilbert said simply.
"Why not?" Alice snapped.
"Buying ingredients is cheaper than buying ready made food. Everyone knows that," he explained.
Alice huffed and turned around. "Tch, you coward," she said and cracked her knuckles. "Fine, I'll just take it."
"Wait!" Gilbert shouted. "I got it, I'll buy it for you!" He was about to run off, but turned to face Oz and I.
"I'll be fine," Oz chuckled. "I'll wait here."
I nodded and leaned against the barrel Oz was sitting on. "Me too. I'll stay put for once."
Gilbert looked at Oz with worry in his butterscotch eyes. So he was still a caring person after all these years. Always carrying about his precious master.
"Are you worried about what Break said?" Gilbert asked and placed a hand on Oz's shoulder. Before Oz could say anything, Gilbert got loud and started bad mouthing Break. "Most of that guy's actions are just pointless harassment! But over the past ten years how much have I-"
"Gil," Oz said, cutting him off. The blonde smiled warmly at his retainer. "I'm fine so . . . Why don't you hurry up and go?"
Gilbert smiled and placed his hat on Oz's head. "I'll be back soon. Claudia, stay out of trouble!" he said as he ran off.
"Trouble? Sheesh, what does he take me for?" I muttered. "Right, Oz?" I glanced at the blonde and frowned.
Oz was staring off into space, it looked like something in his mind was bothering him.
"Oz?" I asked and reached for the blonde's sleeve. I tugged on it a bit. "Oz?"
He glanced at me and smiled. "I'm sorry if I'm worrying you, Claudia."
"What did Break say?" I asked since I wasn't there when he paid them a visit.
Oz continued to smile and shook his head. "It's nothing important, don't worry about it, Claudia. Kay?" he chuckled.
I couldn't help smiling a bit myself. "Fine," I chuckled.
"Hey Claudia, are you really Sharon's sister? You don't look like her."
I glanced at Oz and he suddenly got worried. He waved his hands. "I-I'm not trying to be rude," he said quickly. "You don't have to tell me if you don't want."
I chuckled and smiled down at the ground. "It's fine, Oz." I looked up at the afternoon sky and continued to smile. "You're right, we don't look alike. That's because I'm not actually her sister. You see, Oz,"—I smiled over at the blonde—"Sharon adopted me."
"Adopted you?" he asked.
I nodded. "See, I used to be a maid for a different noble until Sharon adopted me. Do you want to know why she picked me?"
"If you don't mind," Oz muttered.
"Not at all," I chuckled. "I might as well tell you the truth since you already know about Gilbert."
"You knew his true identity too?"
I placed a finger to my lips. "I know more than anyone else."
"What does that m-"
I flicked my finger against Oz's forehead. He winced and then rubbed the area. "That hurt, Claudia."
"We were talking about me, remember?" I smiled. "About Gilbert, I won't tell you yet, or even him for that matter. Maybe later, kay?"
Oz nodded. "So why were you adopted?"
"Because I'm . . ." I looked around and then leaned in towards Oz, my lips at his ear. "Oz, I'm a demon," I whispered.
Oz gasped and leaned away. "D-de-"
I placed my hand over his mouth quickly and put a finger to my lips with my free hand. "Hush. Don't say it out loud. And yes, I am. But I'm different from most demons. I was born with a soul."
I took my hand away from Oz's mouth slowly and watched in shock as he smiled and laughed. "That's so cool. So you're a unique person. Really unique."
"Unique?" I asked. No one ever called me that before, not even him. He would always call me 'rare' and 'irreplaceable', but that always made me feel like some kind of object. Unique, huh?
Oz nodded. "You are. You're unlike all the other ones. But, Claudia, why were you born with a soul?" Oz whispered the last sentence.
"Because I was born on December 25th."
Oz's emerald eyes widened. "That's the birthday of Jesus Christ."
I nodded. "A day demons despise. Me being born on that day made me more pure than any demon and gave me a soul. I mean, don't get me wrong, I can still kill and do other bad things, but I have a bigger conscious so I'll feel more bad."
"Have you ever killed someone?"
I shook my head. "Never. I can't go through with it, which is why other demons consider me a disgrace."
"So . . . Does that mean you were all alone?" Oz asked and stared at me sadly.
"Don't look at me like that," I said and struggled to keep smiling. "I wasn't alone, I always had . . ." I stared down at the ground and let my smile fade, I just couldn't keep it anymore. "I mean, I used to have someone who always stood by my side. I had many people, but they were human so they died, but that one person . . . he was always around because he was a demon too."
"What happened to him?"
"We grew apart," I whispered.
The two of us sat in silence for a few minutes. I tried to control my breathing and keep myself from crying. I kept blinking to keep the tears at bay.
"Well, I know I won't be around long either since I'm human, but I won't leave you alone."
"Huh?" I looked up at Oz and was welcomed by his warm smile. My eyes widened and Oz placed a warm hand on the top of my head. "Oz."
"I'll make sure you're never alone again," he said.
"How?" I asked sadly. "Like you said, you won't be around long since you're human."
"But my family name will. From my children to my grandchildren and so on, you'll never be alone."
I chuckled and flicked Oz's forehead again to lighten the mood. "Cheesy much?"
"Hey!" he laughed.
We both stopped laughing and stared at each other in confusion. "They've been gone for a long time," we said in unison.
"Give it back! Wah! Stop!"
Oz and I both looked over towards an alley way where the cries were coming from.
"What's that?" I whispered.
Oz and I walked over to the alley way and peaked inside. Three kids were picking on one kid.
"Why those little-" I said and was about to stop things when Oz placed his hand on my shoulder. I glanced up at him questionably. "Oz?"
"I have a plan," he said and winked at me. "Follow my lead, alright? Just act like me."
"Um, alright," I said and Oz placed his hat on my head.
"It makes you look even more rebellious," he said.
"I already look rebellious?" I asked myself and glanced down at my off the shoulder, long-sleeve purple shirt, gray leather mini skirt with chains, and black lace-up boots. Well . . . I guess.
Oz walked into the alleyway, me following close behind.
The kid being bullied lunged for another kid who was dangling a locket in his hand. The bully flung the locket before the kid could get it, but Oz caught it in time.
"Wow. It seems you guys are having some fun," Oz said cheerfully. All eyes were suddenly on the two of us. "Won't you let me join in?"
"Huh? Who are you two?" one of the bullies asked.
"Just two evil passerbys," Oz chuckled. He suddenly got this dark look in his eyes.
I chuckled and smirked at the boys to add some emphasis.
"However, since you guys are bullying people, I just can't help it," Oz said in a dark tone. "If you are going to do it, you have to be thorough. You can't be childish like that." Oz began to approach the boy. When he was close enough, he slammed his hand onto the wall right by the boy's head.
Oz turned to me and smirked. He extended his hand towards me.
I continued to smirk and handed him the wrapped chocolate dagger I had. Good touch, don't you think? I hope those kids buy this.
"You have to cut off his fingernails with a knife," Oz said. "Here, I'll show you how." he licked the wrapped candy dagger and chuckled. "Will you cry out nicely for me?"
That really freak the bullies out and they all ran off screaming. When they were long gone, I burst out into a fit of laughter. I was laughing so much, I had tears in the corner of my eyes and my stomach was hurting.
Oz laughed too and unwrapped the candy to show the kid he wasn't in danger since he still looked freaked out. Oz took a bite of the candy and winked at the boy. "Want some?"
"Eh? Y-you two aren't going to hurt me?" the kid asked and kept looking between Oz and I.
I shook my head. "No. We came to save you."
"We just wanted to make a big show out of it," Oz laughed and turned to me. "Right, Claudia?"
I nodded as Oz opened the locket the bullies had thrown. He sat on the ground, the boy sitting next to him while I preferred to just stand and lean on the brick wall behind us.
"Wow, your mom is really beautiful," Oz told the boy cheerfully as he looked at the picture. I peaked at it too and agreed with him in my head. She was pretty.
"Yeah. She died, but she was really kind and warm."
"Are you lonely?" Oz and I asked in unison, then exchanged a brief glance.
"Nope, because I have my father with me," the kid said and smiled happily. "My house is 'ruined' so we can't live in a fancy mansion anymore. Our house has gotten smaller and we have no servants, but I got to be with my father a lot more than before! That's why, I'm not lonely!"
I looked away from the two and remained silent. A kind and warm mother? A father always by your side? I've never had that before. All I've ever had was him, but not even he was around 24/7. Mother and Father still found chances to abuse me.
Oz and the boy continued to talk, but I couldn't stand it anymore. I walked away when they weren't paying attention, but I made sure to leave the hat by Oz's side before I left.
I hugged myself tightly as I ran through the darkening streets. A mother . . . A father . . . How could any child love their parents? Parents are disgusting! They're ruthless! They're . . . They're . . .
But what if I'm wrong? Not all parents can be like mine.
I sighed and sat down in a different alley. Oz will wonder where I am soon . . . I'll go back later. I just want to rest a bit and get my mind off of things.
Am I really that bad? Why does being a Holy Demon have to be so terrible? Why couldn't I have loving parents? Why couldn't I have a happy childhood? Am I really that bad? Am I a bad girl? Should I have just given up life when I had the chance? I'm not but a mistake. A disgusting being in the eyes of the people she loves. Mother, Father, and him. They all hate me. They all kicked me aside! They all hate me!
"I should have never been born," I murmured.
Is this all you ever do?
I gasped and looked up, only to come face to face with a floating stuffed white rabbit in a blue dress. Alyss.
"All I ever do?" I asked.
It seems that since I've been watching over you, all you do is either fight with yourself about your feelings or sulk about your past.
"Hey! That's not all that I do!"
Alyss giggled and flew closer to my face Really? Then what did you earlier with the pocket watch, and what about now? And that nightmare last night?
"How do you know about the nightmare?" I gasped and placed my hands on either side of my head. "Stop stalking my dreams!"
Alyss continued to laugh and began floating up to the sky. Prove it. Become stronger. If you can't, then I have no need for you to protect me.
I gasped. "No! I-I'm not weak! I'm not!" I protested.
Then stop thinking of the past and stop lying to yourself! With those final words, she disappeared.
I sighed. I suppose Alyss is right. I should stop thinking about the past. But what if the past is important to cling onto? And what about the answers I want to find out about my past? The true answers about the tragedy of Sablier.
"Alyss, what about that?" I asked, but of course I received no answer in return. Alyss had already gone back to the Abyss. I sighed and stood up. Alright, I'll try and be stronger, but inside, I know I'll always feel like a mistake. An error.
Tada! Sorry for such a late update. I've actually been pretty stuck on this story, but I hope this is good enough. I know Claudia is contradicting herself in the end, but, that's what we do a lot as humans and Claudia is sort of more 'human' than demon, even though she isn't really human. I hope you all enjoyed this chapter and I will try to update sooner from now on!
P.S Song used for lyrics and chapter title: ERROR by Lily (Vocaloid) but I prefer the version by Ritsu (UTAU)