Shadow Born

The Shadow-Born have one terrible secret: they are the hybrid sons of Lucifer himself, sent from the depths of hell to act as judges, determining the guilt and sins of humans as well as returning the escaped damned to their eternal punishment. The only problem with their existence? After twenty years, they are summoned by their father to attempt an impossible Trial, from which none return. With his very self a ticking timebomb because of the invader within his own mind, Luke must learn to accept this new part of himself and make the best of the few years remaining to him - all while attempting to rectify the mistakes and failures of his unlikely new companion.

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4. Black Whisperer

One day later…

 

“Glad you rejoin us at last, Lucius. I had begun to wonder whether you would awaken at all.” The voice was vaguely

familiar, but Luke couldn’t place it. He was lying on a soft bed, blankets covering him and a pillow beneath his head. The ceiling above him was painted dark red and covered in flames, shadows dancing through them. Luke sat up with a gasp as memories flooded back into him. Sure enough, his arm was heavily bandaged.

“Come on, Glen. Leon didn’t cut him that much. One little scratch, and he faints. Pathetic!” Luke looked at this “Glen.” He

had heard the name before, from Valerie and Leon both. Leon had said it with admiration, Valerie with fear. Who was this man, to inspire such feelings?

He looked ordinary enough. Black hair and black eyes. No, wait, they were blue, just so dark that they looked black. A

pleasant enough face. Tall, muscular, probably about twenty. He looked a lot like Luke himself, and Leon. Why did they all look the same?

The other boy was younger, not more than sixteen. His eyes were darker than Leon’s, but lighter than Glen’s. Did that

signify something? Luke thought it might, but he couldn’t remember what.

“Don’t worry, Jordan,” Glen said pleasantly. “We will teach him true pain soon enough.”

“Both of you, stop being idiots. It was clearly the repeated shock of learning that all of this – everything that for years our

poor Lucius repressed – is all real. That, and watching his friends die.” This boy was young as well, only a little older than Jordan. His eyes, however, were completely white. No iris, no pupil. Just white. Where the others that Luke had seen were muscular, this boy was thin, almost anorexic. Bones protruded from pale, milky skin, each one clearly defined.

The boy seemed to know that Luke was watching him, even though he was clearly blind. “Lucius, relax. You are among

friends now.” Jordan snorted rudely from his perch half-way up the wall. He seemed to be sitting on the top of a cabinet. White-eyes ignored him. “I am Nathan, this is Glen, and Jordan. Disregard everything they say, they cannot harm you until you are well again, and even then only slightly.”

“Yeah, that’s comforting.” Luke mumbled under his breathe. Glen smiled wickedly as he unhitched himself from the wall,

and, beckoning to Jordan, strode purposefully away. Jordan, with another snicker, jumped down and followed like an obedient dog. As soon as they were gone he asked Nathan, “Who are you?”

“Ah, a question for the ages. Who am I really? I cannot begin to even fathom it. Why am I different from our brothers? Even

they do not know, Lucius. But, I think you mean to ask is: ‘what are you.’ I am Shadow-Born, as are Glen, Jordan, Leon, Valerie, and a few others. As are you, Lucius. So you really don’t remember anything? I thought Leon may have been mistaken, but it seems he was right.”

“So what are you then? What is Shadow-Born?”

“So many questions, Lucius. The truth can harm as well as heal. Perhaps, with time, the truth may return to you. Until then,

I can tell you only one thing. Those people, the ones who died? They were never people. Those things – the Dwellers – are abominations. They drain the world dry, if they aren’t stopped. It isn’t our main purpose, of course, but we do handle situations when they arise.”

“Mark, Griffin, they weren’t monsters. I’ve known them for,” Luke began, but Nathan cut him off. “You have known them for

seven years, correct? Ever since your mind  rebelled and your consciousness and unconsciousness clashed. Sleep now, Lucius, and heal. Tomorrow is a new day.”

Luke wanted to fight him, wanted to get answers, but his eyelids were suddenly so heavy. They slid closed, and instantly

Luke was asleep.

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