Deep Into the Depths of Despair

Alister, a citizen of the Veil struggles with the overwhelming revenge of the death of his only love. Created for the 24 hours City of Bones Competition.

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1. For Love

She was tiny, the size of a young fae but with a sturdier build like a human child. Alister crouched in the bushes, blade in hand ready to fend off an attack. He had come to learn that when a human child was near the parents were never far behind. Yet no one came or called for the child as she tried to scurry up the trees like a scrury, a possum native to the Veil. Like the possum she managed to get up several hands but slid back down due to the lack of grip she possessed but yet she never discouraged only pouted and then leaped up for another try. Alister found himself amused by her antics only to hiss to himself. This was a human child, a child of the people who searched far and wide for his kind, a child of killers and yet he watched on as she jumped up the tree.

Alister fought against the wall of haze in his mind. He struggled and pushed with all his might, desperate to return to consciousness and ever so slowly like a Seal of John the haze began to melt. What had happened? Where was he? Questions blossomed within his throbbing skull and made him hurt all over again. Struggling he lifted onto his side where he panted for breath, his sides ached and he wished he could die all over again. Alister's chest pulled at the thought of dying. Why? Lily! He remembered everything now.

He remembered the fight against the humans, the struggle of watching his own perish before him, the pain of fighting against what they should have been able to demolish and the promise. The promise he made to her about surviving, about keeping her safe throughout the battle. Ignoring the mind numbing pain, that he was beginning to welcome, Alister stumbled clumsily to his feet gripping the air for an invisible hold. He felt drained and the nagging pain in his gums reminded him that he had not refuelled since before the battle but he pushed all rational thought aside, he would not rest until he found Lily. His mind reeled, her halo of blonde hair could not be spotted around him; in fact the bodies around him were disfigured and covered in filth and blood to such an extent that none recognisable. And god, the number. They littered the field like trash, thrown across ungratefully and left to decay. The field which was once considered holy ground in the Veil had now become a graveyard. 

Several others like Alister himself were beginning to pull themselves up, the survives of their kin. His mind urged him to attend to the living, continue with the code they lived by 'Stand Strong Together' but the continuous ache in his heart forced him on passed the dead into towards the centre of the field where the battle had been strongest. His registered, but ignored, the sight of the slaughtered, children thrust into a fight they had no part in, mothers still gripping their blades to protect their children and families hungry to protect their lineage.

In what would have been only a few minutes felt like a lifetime to Alister, who scoured the fields for the child he had come to cared for. His head had ceased throbbing but wounds that had not had the chance to heal began to bleed. They hurt almost as much as the pain in his chest but something in the back of his mind, a whisper in the wind told him that his physical wounds would heal. As he moved closer a mound of bodies began to shape, they looked as though they had been used to make a fort or were protecting each other as they died. The idea of his people doing this to survive, to live even for a moment longer had his heart swell with pride. Even if it was only for a moment. In the wake of the bodies a single hand gloved to the wrist stuck out reaching for what would never come. In the sunlight, shielded to his kinds needs, Alister caught a glint of sliver from the pile and upon closer inspection he found the gloved hand held a ring of the middle finger. The ring was intricately laced with two ropes that wrapped and wrapped around each other like a lifeline, a symbol of a noble family. Alister's family. 

A mangled cry, much alike a wounded animal, escaped passed his chapped lips and his heart leaped into his throat in grief. Crossing the space to the hand with such speed Alister gripped it tightly within his own. He felt for any sort of movement; there was none. He felt for any sort of reaction; there was none. He felt for a pulse: there was none.

'No,' he croaked. Clawing through the dead Alister wasted no time retrieving her body from the mound.

'Are you a monster?' She asked innocently, not aware of the dangers soon to come. She swung her hands back and forth as she cocked her head to the side staring up at Alister with such a gaze. 'Mummy, told me about monsters.'

Alister gave a thick laugh, 'really, did she warn you not to tread these woods?' He had inched closer the blade hidden beneath his flowing cloak and his canines slowly extending.

The little child suddenly gave a heart wrenching sob before she flung herself forwards. Her legs trembled beneath her and stumbled while her arms wrapped around the stranger's legs tightly seeking comfort. Her little body shook with loud sobbing tears, such a sound could have woken the city. Alister gripped her insuring that she wouldn't fall, his heart clenched at the sight of the sobbing child but the only thing he could think was how this child. This little human child had just crossed the Veil.

Alister rocked her stone cold body close to his chest, tears that he had not known he could shed poured like waterfalls from his raw eyes. He closed his eyes, pouring his heart and soul into wishing upon the Council and any God he had ever heard of but nothing would wake her, nothing would wake his child ever again. He sobbed and sobbed loudly, his body shaking violently as grief over took him; filling out ever fibre of his being. Nothing had ever felt this horrible, not even the many times that he had almost died in his life, not even the time when he thought he would lose her to the Abyss all those months ago. Another sob racked his body, he was in agony. His transition into one of his own kind had not made him want to rip out his own non-beating heart out. He peered down at her from glassy eyes and sobbed harder, she lay in his arms unblinking, staring into the sky which she would never see again. His little girl, the child he had raised and loved and cared for from her time beginning at the Veil now lay limp never to grow into the woman he had envisioned. Alister could do nothing more than sob and clutch her closer, brushing the crusting blood from her lips and hair. The horrible scent that used to entice him now made him ache and burn with fury, worst still that it was everywhere on her and it burned it's way through his senses. The man who had took her life had not been forgiving. 

The man! The vermin that had massacred and taken away everything he cared for in this world. His kind, his daughter. Unquenchable and undeniable fury shook his body to the core, the rage he had suppressed and buried now crawled it's was to the surface. His face contorted in pain, his nails growing and canines elongating dangerously. Facing the sky he let out a roar that shook his body, pure rage echoed around him as many of the survivors called back to him in the same pain and fury. They gathered around him with their blades in hand and snarling fiercely. Alister placed her body on the ground and closed her eyes before turning away. He faced the crowd and snarled for silence which he was greeted with.

His eyes raged red, 'no more.' He said. Accepting a blade from one of the survivors he thrust it into the air and snarled, 'NO MORE! TONIGHT THEY DIE!' With that they moved out at a steady pace. No need to rush when the humans would meet their end for the countless numbers that died, for the families that were lost. For his Lily.

'What do you think dying is like?' She asked him as they moved about the council halls, towards their meeting on her fate to come. She walked slowly by Alister's side and gripped his hand tightly fearful. 

Alister looked down at her, from her golden locks that had grown so much, due to the magic in the air, that they now rested down her back in long curls and her childlike face that brightened his days to the flowing white dress that once used to belong to his own daughter. And in that moment, he saw not what Lily was but what she would be. He had faith that the council would make the right choice, that he would raise her and she would as much apart of their kind as the children they breed themselves. He stopped outside the oak doors and crouched down in front of her, looking directly into her crystal eyes full of life, and curiosity.

'You, may darling Lily,' he spoke stroking her cheek like a loving father, 'will become the best and brightest of those in the Veil. I have faith that this will be your future.'

She bit her cheeks unconvinced, 'and I'll live with you?'

'Yes.'

'Forever?' She held out her little pinky and Alister smiled affectionately wrapping his own around to seal the promise.

'Forever.'

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