The War Of No Hope

Every tyrant has to start somewhere. Especially the most terrifying and violent ones. This is the story of how one became one, and fell from grace at the same time...

Book 1 in the Chalson Chronicles. All rights reserved. Cover designed by Literia Lia.

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2. Visit's Of A Deathly Nature

I stood at the end of my father's grave, rain falling like my tears on the fresh soil. It felt like a dream almost. I was barely aware of anything as I placed my single rose down and left the graveyard. Death. It was everywhere as I walked through town. Weeping mother's, orphaned children and hardened father's. The bodies of their loved ones were carted down the street, bursting boils coating their faces like a failed mask. I had to take to the alleys in the end. I had too much grief of my own to be able to deal with theirs. Grief seemed to be a permanent part of me now, always there and always hurting. It had been there since mother's hanging ten years ago, and had never gone away. Not really. This time seemed different though. Watching someone you love die a slow and painful death from something that you know about...it feels like you're the one dying.

My small, three roomed apartment that I had once shared with my dad felt even more empty to me now. The kitchen was just as bare as it had always been, my room just as private, the living room just as messy. Everything was like it had always been, but not. Sinking down on the mattress that served as my bed, my body was soon racked with sobs. A loud knock at the door interrupted me. Pulling myself up, I yanked open the door. A boy stood at the door, his brown eyes full of concern.
"You ok, Opeh?" he questioned softly, pulling his black hair away from his face.
"What do you think Xela?" I shot back, turning back in to the house. The door was about to shut when he caught my arm and yanked me out. I knew him well enough just to go with it. I was still barely aware of anything as we walked. Thank Saulaf that Xela was holding my hand so he could pull me out of the way of other people. We didn't stop or speak until we reached the borders of Granld. He helped me over the wired fence and we made our way slowly down to the deserted beach. You would think that a beach like this one would be packed, but it never is. No one else has been down here since the war. Too many memories I guess. So many men had died here I suprised the golden sand hasn't gone blood red. Xela pulled me down on the sand and just looked at me.

Tears began to run down my face again, slowly at first but getting more voilent and fast by the second. My head rested on his shoulder and I wept like a child. He didn't say anything, just let me cry on his shoulder. Nothing needed to be said. We just sat there, me weeping and him staring out at the sea. It took a good few minutes for the tears to dry up and for my head to leave his shoulder.
"Sorry, I got your shoulder all wet," I spoke up, wiping it gently. He smiled at me, his eyes sparkling for the briefest of moments.
"Don't worry, it's waterpoof," Xela replied comfortingly, passing me a small raspberry pie. My favourite. A small bracelet of purple and blue bells was wrapped around it, jiggling like church bells. I slipped it round my wrist, making it jiggle even more.
"Thanks," I sniffed, breaking in to the pie. The berries burst in my mouth as I ate, the pastry crumbling like sweet tasting sand. I looked out at the sea and was struck by the sight of two dolphins leaping high in the air as if they were dancers. Maybe one of them was Mum and the other Dad. I'm sure they would of liked that idea, being turned into dolphins after their deaths. The sight seemed to rouse me, and I stood up to leave.
"I need to go and do some hunting. Think you can get back ok?" he asked, following me up to the fence. Concern was written all over his face and I could tell that he wanted to walk me home. However, his family is more important than me.
"I'll be fine. Just don't get caught ok?" I tried to laugh, but it sounded more like a whimper.
"I'll try not to," the boy smiled at me reassuringly and ran off down the beach towards the secret cove. I slipped silently back under the fence and made my way back home. I was so tired from all the weeping that, as soon as I was home, I crawled in to my bed and was fast asleep before my head even hit the pillow.

 

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