Hey. How's it going. This is probably the last thing you'll see for a while, so...well, don't get too upset when I say this but I have to admit that I'm not a big fan of Twilight any more. That said, I was cleaning out folders on my computer and came across this. The last time it was worked on was sometime in November 2008. I was what, 15 then? So I guess we'll see what you think of this. All I did presently was fix a few errors and add a little bit more to it including giving it an ending. Most of it is unchanged.
But still, I think a lot of it is... not so hot.
I probably won't be writing any more for this fandom, but it was fun while it lasted.
I am fire and air; my other elements
I give to baser life. -Cleopatra, Act V, scene ii
I rolled back on my heels in boredom, toning out the rambunctious rant of my father and the angered cries of his followers. I shifted again, feeling the dull numbness of my foot begin to spread toward the back of my leg. I yawned inconspicuously, letting my mind wander farther than the drab town centre we stood in the general vicinity of.
The grey tones and hues of the dim sky and buildings blurred together a bit as I thought back to other activities that would have better held my interest. Grumbling a bit I remembered the medicinal literature that had so rudely been torn from my grasp by my father only a short time earlier that very evening.
Surely I might as well have gone off down to the local apothecary shop to browse the local remedies, or wandered through the town, searching for some ill fated fool that required my assistance.
An abrupt yell in unison from the people clumped around me disrupted my train of thought as some men jostled one another, smirking maliciously. One nearby brainwashed citizen raised an old farm tool that had been dangerously sharpened into a point as he shouted loudly to the heavens above.
"I dare any cretin of the Dark to come forth! I will smite them as soon as they draw near, and the Devil will have back his Soldiers of Night!" Those around him laughed haughtily as he said this. My nose wrinkled slightly as I smelled the dense stench of liquor nearly rolling in waves off of this man.
My father smiled at the man in satisfaction, displaying his yellowed and worn toothy grin.
"The denizens of the Dark have survived for far too long! This is our city, and we shall do what we must to protect our women and children!" He shouted loudly in his hoarse voice, referring mainly to the many women he had drunkenly wooed.
A similar cry sounded from everyone near me, mostly coming from the drunkards joining us from the nearby tavern, swaying in an invisible breeze as they threatened the 'Creatures of Night.' As they outcry grew in tenor I allowed my foot to find purchase on the stone street, inching it slowly behind me so as to provide some cover to the notion that was I darting from the square.
One man elbowed me then, narrowing his eyes at my unyielding expression, obviously annoyed that I did not share his patriotic spirit. My shoulders slumped in response as I thought of the duty that would be placed on my shoulders once my father left his position or passed away, as horrid as that thought sounded. It was not a distate for my father, but rather his positions and views. Even as a grown man I found myself still yearning for the approval or absence or a haughty glare that had plagued me since childhood.
Seeing as the man who had joined with my mother was a priest, one would think that he would reject any and all violence or at the very least attempt to condone it. Instead, he chose to pursue it in his old twisted manner, and ending the lives of so many unsuspecting—and innocent—beings in the process. He had chosen to trade his holy robes for an angry cloak of brutality after the passing of my mother, who had not survived my birth. The guilt of that time settled in my stomach like a heavy stone and I again found my footsteps retreating.
At dawn our group dispersed to our lodgings for the remainder of the day in an attempt to build 'strength' and 'agility' for the upcoming battle with our horrible 'Creatures of Night'.
The cot in which I was to rest was quite uncomfortable; the stitching of the fibers were loose at the seams, threatening to give out if I were to roll the wrong way during my slumber. It smelt of rotting meat, and the dark odor of a disease I had grown accustomed to after being around my father for so long, reaking horribly of pure liquor.
For the next few hours I lie awake to my father's inconstant snorts and fits as I found new and intricate designs in the cobblestones lining the floor around me.
Once the sun was finally highest in the sky –or noon as one would also refer to the time as—I shut my eyes, blocking out all the sights and sounds from the streets and rooms below and simply prayed.
In only a handful of hours I would awake and venture out into the Night with my father and his faith, and in doing so I would possibly end not one, but two of the lives of innocent citizens. I would bathe and scald myself latter, but would remain forever burned by the blood on my hands and cries ringing in my ears.
Horrid images of future happenings dotted my fitful sleep during the day, vibrantly coloured by the foul stench of death and weapons glistening in the moonlight. The absence of crickets was substituted with miserable screams of by standing citizens… A child cried out for its father and mother, a woman begging for the released of her wrongly accused husband, pure and innocent maidens being carried off by men, impure thoughts presumably running through their minds.
I awoke abruptly a few hours later, blinking through the twilight sky seen through the window opened in a vain attempt to draw out the musty air and replace it with the calm sounds of night. I frowned as I stood, unaccustomed to no longer hearing the sounds of my father as he shifted or snored in his sleep as accompanied most nights.
"Father?" I whispered to the air surrounding me, peering toward my father's cot in the dim lighting engulfing the room. "Father, are you all right?" I questioned, slowly making my way toward him, watching my feet so I would fail to step upon any mouse unfortunate enough to be found in the upstairs loft of Lady Kenton's home.
"I said, are you all right?" I asked again, reaching out to shake my father's shoulder. I immediately retracted my hand as he limply rolled to his side, his mouth hung open in an unspoken laugh. A sound I cannot describe passed through my lips as I stepped back and stare before me, unable to tear my gaze away. A feeling of dread began to fully sink in alongside the sorrow swelling in my chest and yet I pushed it aside as I reached forward again, slowly this time. Extending two of my fingers toward him I gently pressed against my father's throat, waiting to feel his pulse.
I heard more so than felt a minute pass.
Another few slipped by into nothingness and all I could do in that moment was remain where I stood and work to keep my thoughts mournful rather than spiteful.
My father had passed in his sleep, which meant that I was to lead the band of rogue vigilantes on their hunt in only a matter of minutes.
As I retracted my hand, the worn leather around his neck brushed beneath my fingertips, and perhaps it was more out of memorial for the man my father had once been before the night and drink plagued his heart that I removed his worn cross, wrapping it around my own neck and offering him prayers of my own.
I slumped back against my own cot, watching the ceiling above shift back and forth before me. I knew that I should have been more saddened by the sudden death of my father, but he had been what one might very well imagine as an ideal head-of-house…
A quick rapping on the door below caused me to sit up suddenly, blinking into the eerily silent and desolate world before me. Already dressed in what my now deceased father had deemed acceptable for the night's activity's, I stumbled down the stair way, fumbling for the latches used to open the door and hoping that Lady Kenton would not be disturbed by the noise and praying that she would not be the one to find my father's body before I was allowed the chance to explain.
I found myself greeting our unwelcome guests with a general lack of emotion, partly still stuck in the state of utter shock.
"For the bloody fourth time, I demand to know where your father is; we are to leave at once!" The man—whom I soon recognized as Sir Henry from Queen's Gate, only a short walk from where we now stood—inquired, waving a blazing torch before my face. The tip of my nose felt as if it were burnt as he repeated the action and yet I was glad for some form of feeling in that instance.
"I am able to tell you where he resides at the moment, but I regret to inform you that he is not in the right state to lead your band on a hunt to-night." Sir Henry grimaced angrily at me as I said this, the vein in his throat throbbing as he once again threatened to scald my face with his torch without even saying so.
"He is dead. Gone in his sleep." I concluded in a rather monotone matter-of-fact tone, watching the shift of emotion and expressions of the crowd before me in brief interest as a few men shifted uncomfortably, unsure of what to do now. Perhaps it was then too much of me to believe that they would simply let it be and disperse, returning to their previous lives and the activities they had once immersed themselves in.
"Then you will lead us." Another man—Nicholai, one of the most peculiar men to join my father's troupe as of yet—said nonchalantly, his fingers twitching in anticipation. His upper lip curled as well, exposing his gleaming white teeth as if he were holding back a snarl. I found myself staring into his darkened eyes, unable to look away as a shadow passed over them. A brute cheer erupted through the small gathering of brainwashed men as I repeatedly shook my head negatively.
"N-No, I honestly couldn't. I don't know, er, know enough to do so." I offered, taking a few steps backwards into the doorway of my lodging. I searched my minds for any other arguments to aid my plight, instead met with the malevolent clutches that were ill-minded men seeking leadership and solace and all too terrified of being alone.
In the pre-dawn light I had grown accustomed to the faces of bloodthirsty men.
In the torch-lit night I grew accustomed to the faces of monsters.
The darkness of the streets had never before felt so foul, the stones stained with innocent blood. A man cried out, begging for mercy, his yells accompanied by his lone wife's wails of terror. I turned away, making my way down a narrow alley, in a vain attempt to put distance between myself and the echoing screams around me.
The metal of the blade hanging from my belt thumped against my thigh, sending a shiver down my spine. No. I would not do another man harm. I would not draw my blade, would not strike him down with it. I panted now as my steps grew all the more hurried.
The cries behind me stopped short, making me break into a run. This is not right. Morals have been thrown to the wayside, and life has lost true value.
My run came to a halt when I collided head first with the wall of a stone building. Landing on my backside, I stared blankly for a moment before truly realizing where I was. I stood quickly, bringing a shaking hand to the base of my neck. I clasped the cloth of my shirt tightly with one hand, feeling the sharp outline of my deceased father's cross. I closed my eyes firming, drawing it from its cloth sheath to my dry and cracked lips. I uttered a silent prayer, oblivious to the slums around me.
"Heaven help us."
I mourned those traumatized by this night, those strangled by their words and screams and metals flashed before them. I prayed for those with blood on their hands and those whose thoughts ran thick and clouded by wrongs and the beliefs that they were doing right. I prayed for my father and I prayed for myself.
As I opened my eyes I once more found myself in an area that I had never been overly familiar with at night, let alone during the daylight hours. My breath came out in hard bursts and I had to remind myself to breath normally and work to calm my mind before I became too overwhelmed. I stood slowly, trailing my hand up the worn wall beside me, using it to brace my weary self as my legs shook uncontrollably.
I murmured further prayers and stared blankly before me.
It took a few moments for the gentle moans and cries to reach my ears and I let my head whip around if only to locate the source of the sounds.
Withholding the urge to cry out on my own I took in the terrible sight before me—an older man lay slumped on the street only a few faces away and from what I could tell in the general lack of light seemed to be in very poor condition.
I struggled to maintain my footsteps, stumbling toward him and deciding to offer him aid before one of the others came upon him and chose to end his life. I fell to my knees, unsure of how to address him and all the same knowing that if I didn't do something for him soon he would surely not live to see the break of dawn.
I don't know how long I knelt beside him, simply speaking to him before I extended my hand to his soiled tunic, reaching through one of the tears in it and eliciting a hiss from him.
It isn't until after I apologize and attempt to come up with another course of action that I realize there were no wounds on this man's body.
Looking up into his face I move to speak, wanting to question him and only gasping to find these eyes staring down at me and I cannot move.
He stared at me with those reddened irises and laughed.
I don't remember if I screamed.
I awaken, and I burn.
And yet, I am free.