The silver blade I clasp between my fingers, glimmers in the moonlight. A ghostly hue fills the air as I step towards the boy huddled in the corner. I stroke his sandy hair and stare intently at him. Terror dances behind his eyes as he begs me for mercy. I bend down until my lips are almost against his ear.
"You had your chance," I whisper. "And you blew it."
I take a step back and look deep into his eyes one last time, and I smile as I plunge the blade into Marco's chest.
I wake up screaming with my heart pounding, threatening to explode from my chest. As I try to catch my breath, loud sobs escape my mouth and tears gush down my sweaty cheeks. That's when I notice the empty space at my bedside, for the first time my mother isn't here. Then I hear it. Muffled sobs from down the hallway. I freeze, then throw back the covers and sprint down the hall until I'm standing outside my mothers bedroom. I throw the door open and see her lying there on the bed, weeping into the pillow, a crumpled piece of paper lying at her side. It was the first time I had ever seen her cry.
"Mother," I croak, rushing to her side. "What's wrong? What happened?"
"It's Pierro," she snivels. "He's dead."
"What!?" I gasp, not believing the words that have escaped her mouth.
"He was visiting his brother, Matteo, in the army," she stutters. "They were attacked and-"
She breaks down into tears once more and I feel salty droplets rolling down my own cheeks.
"And there were no survivors," she sobs.
I stay with her for the entire night watching her go through the stages of denial, anger and finally bitter acceptance. That's when it happens. It all suddenly becomes to much and the bottle of rage held within me explodes. No one has the right to make my mother feel this way. No one. Suddenly, before I realize what's happening, I'm screaming at the top of my voice and flinging any object within arms reach across the room. The words that burst from my mouth are filled with fury and menace. I swear that I will slaughter every soul that's responsible for Pierro's death, even if it kills me. My mother desperately tries to calm me down but to no avail. I slam my fist into the wall until my knuckles bleed. I can feel my soul beginning to apart. Then I say five words filled with such malice, that I will regret for the rest of my life.
"You promised you'd protect me!"
That's when it stops. My heartbeat slows and I begin to think clearly again. I look up at my mother and see her wounded eyes brimming with tears. This time tears that I have caused. I turn on heels and run. I reach the front door and then the front gate and then I just keep running. I run for what feels like hours until I collapse at the side of a narrow stream. The guilt and humiliation consumes me as I lie there, curled into a tiny ball. I can't accept what I'm becoming. A monster.
I kneel over the stream, letting my long raven hair touch the crystal clear water. I look fixedly at the face gazing up at me, but all I see is darkness. I smash my palm into the water watching my reflection shatter into a million pieces. A part of me wishes that Marco was at my side but another part of me simply couldn't bare to let him see me here, so vulnerable, so weak. Then I let it out, years of pain and sorrow explode out of my body with every heartbroken sob.