|More from Kyra+Kuzon||Adventure||PG||None|
The task that Destiny had bestowed upon me
Lightning lit the sky, thunder quickly followed with a deep rumble. Thick rain drenched my clothes, wind whistled through the trees making the grass appear like waves in the ocean.
Even in the weather I wasn't cold, I had more important things on my mind. Revenge. Death.
Many would question my sanity, but you would understand me better if you knew my situation. My situation. Ha! Many had suffered my same fate, many wouldn't be as lucky as me. The fact is that there are murderers out there; most people are too weak to bring them to justice. Not me, I'm going to make sure those murderers never walk freely again.
"Again!" Zosime commanded, raising her arms above her head in frustration. Her robes billowed in the wind and rain dripped from the sleeves, "More ferocity!"
I turned to another rock, and bended the water around my head like a whip. I whipped the rock; the water appeared to come out the other side. I waited a moment and the rock slid off the base in three congruent slices. I smiled.
I had been living with Zosime for a little more than half a year. Zosime was an elderly woman that lived in the Unda Mountains. She specialized in herbs, healing, and cooking. Thanks to Zosime, I had already learned more about Bending the water than ever before. She said she had a special duty for me, but only after hard training and practice could I complete the task, that destiny had bestowed upon me.
"Very good," she accepted with a nod, "now let's go inside and have some warm stew."
I followed Zosime inside to the small table. She had a humble little cottage, a kitchen and two bedrooms. It was very homey; she had plants everywhere, mostly spices and herbs that needed special attention. Zosime gestured to the bowls by the pot of steaming stew. I jumped up and poured the stew into the brown wooden bowls.
I was ten years-old, then. My birthday had just passed a few weeks ago. I loathed my birthday, no "loathe" wasn't a strong enough word. "Hate" I absolutely hate my birthday, it was the anniversary of the worst day of my life.
Memories flooded back, ring, fire, black, age nine.
My parents surprised me with my favorite meal, hazelnut soup and white bread rolls. My mother gave me a beautiful ring, inlaid with a medium size, purple gemstone with the carving of a flower. It was expensive just like everything else my family owned. My father was an Unda ambassador, but hadn't been to neighboring Elements since I was five years old. When I was little my parents decided to try to give me a not-so-normal humble life, we moved to Baja, a small village by the Unda Mountains. But neither of my parents could completely abandon the elegance of noble life.
I gleefully slid the ring onto my left ring-finger. I happily hugged my mother and landed a kiss on her cheek.
After supper we climbed the grass hill next to our humble cottage. My favorite thing to do was climb up the hill, lie in the long feathery grass, and look at the stars.
I felt my eyes droop, but I fought to stay awake. Soon I drifted off to sleep curled up between my devoted parents.
I woke to screams; the smell of smoke filled my nose. My father must have already left to help fight the fire. My mother held me in her arms. "Mother? What's happening?" I asked groggily.
"Just a fire, honey," she replied as if to convince herself, but I saw horror shining in her deep blue eyes.
"Can we go home?" I asked as fear gripped my heart and a longing for my bed appeared.
"Yes, honey, but we must hurry," she agreed nervously, obviously longing for the cottage as well. We both stood and ran down the hill. As we came through the grove of trees at the bottom of the hill we saw what the commotion was about. The whole village was on fire.
Village fires happened often in the summer, but were quickly taken care of by the men. Who bended the water from the creek onto the fire. From the thickness of the smoke I could tell this was no ordinary fire. No, something or someone was fighting back, with fire.
I looked around frantically for my father among the men and women scrambling around. There! Limping into a clearing, my father clutched his side.
"Macto!" my mother yelled my father's name, and left me by the grove as she ran to his side. He collapsed before she got to him. She knelt beside him tears pouring from her fearful eyes.
My mother looked like she was encouraging my father to stand, but he just shook his head and pointed a shaky finger at a black horse and his rider trotting toward them. The rider stopped just short of crushing my parents. My mother stood to confront the rider, but he just struck her across the face and she crumpled back to the ground in a heap. He shouted a command and several others, also in black, came. They nodded and bound my parents and took them away. "Mother!!" I sobbed clutching a low branch of a tree.
My mother looked back at me, but so did the black rider. He slid off his horse and turned toward me. As he walked toward me, I turned and ran. When I got to the other side of the tree I skidded to a halt, two other men were there searching the forest. I immediately turned again, but the rider was already leaning on the tree, leisurely. He grabbed a fistful of my hair and pulled me inches from his face.
The pain was excruciating, I was just touching the ground on my tippy-toes. He glared at me a moment as if sizing me up for a snack, "Don't cry little one this is the beginning of a great and powerful empire, Flamma will prevail." He looked at the two men in black and laughed. He threw me against the tree, knocking me senseless. The men in black picked up my arms, "no," commanded the rider, "we will get her later, go and take care of the others. She won't go anywhere."
I heard the crunch of crisp autumn grass and silence. It was in the silence that I fell. I fell into the blackness, the blackness that still haunts my dreams...
I took a deep breath before I entered the dimly lit room. Murals of Flamma history covered the walls, mostly filled with war and violence.
My father rarely called me to the throne room. He was too busy with leading Flamma in the war to concern himself with the matter of his children. And even when he did need us he usually called my sister, Zena. She was older than me, more polite, more advanced, and better at everything; such was life as the youngest.
I knelt before my father, respectfully. "Son, Raydin of Flamma," my father acknowledged my presence. "I have a proposition for you."
I repeated the proper response Zena had said, "I would be honored to serve Flamma."
"I have had a vision, an assassin killing Flamma generals. Using a form of bending that we have never seen. You must dispose of this assassin quickly and quietly," he informed me.
Adrenaline raced through my body. I, just a boy of twelve years, was going to rid Flamma of a dangerous assassin! I almost jumped up and down in excitement, but my sister's advice ran around my head. Do not act childish. It will prove everything he has suspected, that you are too immature to carry out missions. I took a deep breath, "how do you wish me to carry out such a task?"
"I will have a messenger bring the plans to your quarters," he answered dismissing me with a wave of the hand.
"It will be done," I promised and left. I strutted down the hall to my quarters. I imagined the look on the assassin's face as I put away with him. Quick and simple, I thought, this will be the easiest I ever do. I didn't know how wrong I was.
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