Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Day Five Hundred: In Foramine Mundi, Part Eight

A child ringed in light sinks to the ground.

To him, flying is second nature. He's been manipulating the winds since he was a babe. The air is his plaything. He can twist it howsoever he chooses: in one moment he can carefully blow a piece of parchment off of a desk, and in the next he can pull the air out of a man's lungs. It is all so easy.

Just as easy as killing things that slink about in the night. Just as easy as tweaking your uncle's brain.  Just as easy as reclaiming the one you love most. Just as easy as -

But something's wrong. Something is off. Moments before, he was mighty. He held the world in his palm, spinning in place and never tilting. But now it tilts, and skews, and wobbles, and when he plucks the world from his brow and looks at it -

- it's gone. The world, the remains of the world, the thing he was supposed to protect, fades. It falls away into squares of useless dust and vanishes into the rain.

He should care about this. It was the child's duty, his sole duty, to protect that world. That lock. With one lock still in place, the edge of the map would forever remain a pit. A curiosity barely noticed by those living near it, despite its grotesque enormity. With that lock gone, the pit will be filled. 

But he doesn't care. The child is barely phased. So I used the lock's power to kill Non. So what? It doesn't matter. I'm strong enough on my own. I can take out the rest of them under my own strength. And if I fall short, well, I can always fall back on my fathers for more power. I'll do whatever it takes -


The boy's head lolls, peering over his shoulder with a broad smile. "I'll do whatever it takes to save you, mother."

She is there, waiting for him. The falling water drenches her clothes, matting her hair. The boy suspects that she stinks. He, too, probably smells - they haven't changed in weeks. They've been asleep together.

He misses that time. He will thank the witch for tricking him into sleep. It was the kindest gift she could ever have offered him.

Still invigorated, the boy turns to his mother and shambles towards her, arms outstretched. He wants a hug, an embrace that will never end. A mother's love, her tender, unquestioning affection. The planet can go to hell, he thinks, this silly old game can burn, so long as I have this, so long as this one special person -

In his rapture, he misses the growing horror in his mother's face. So, too, does he miss her incoming fist. It catches him in the cheek. He flies back and falls, slipping into the grass and mud, so bewildered that it takes several seconds for his dopey smile to leave his face.

Love. Affection. Is this a new way of expressing these things?

As his head rings and his body aches she looms over him, gloved fists clenched, the rain mixing with the tears that fall from her eyes. There is so much pain, the boy realizes, and he's sure that her pain is mirrored in his own face. Surely, now, it is breeding in his heart, clawing at his emotions.

"NOT AGAIN!" she screams, pointing down at him. "NOT ANOTHER FUCKING FREAK! IT HAPPENED AGAIN!"

She falls to her knees. Still off-balance, he tries to rise and comfort her. Instead he falls back, head slapping against the ground. The ringing in his ears won't go away.

"AND YOU WERE EVEN WORSE!" She picks up a small heap of mud and throws it at her son. Her sobs shake her entire body. "I KNOW! YOU FUCKING TRIED TO SPLIT US UP! YOU… YOU… YOU FUCKING…"

Yes, he thinks. I did that. I may have been on orders to bring out the weapon, but yes. I did that. And I will do it again, if I get the chance.

More mud. More sobs. More pain. She screams at her child, rising angrily to her legs and assaulting him with frustrated kicks. He deflects the blows with small gusts of wind as best he can, but one gets through… and another… and another… his ribs…

She towers over his broken body at the end, her face ugly and contorted. "GET OUT OF HERE! I NEVER WANNA SEE YOU AGAIN!"

The word 'never' nips at his soul.

She leaves. He stares at the sky, crying quietly, wondering where it all went wrong. A voice in the back of his head whispers vicious suggestions, but he ignores them. He can't ignore them forever, but today… yes.

A bat swoops overhead. It has orange eyes. Even in this pain, the boy finds this curious.


  1. Is the game going to crash now?

    1. It better not. I just finished planning out the days for season three. That would be most inconvenient.

  2. You're playing with my emotions. I don't like that. I want to hate Grayson, but I can't hate a little boy who just wants his mommy's love.