This war has waged for many centuries. Always, have we been the same. Our mates are always set, always the same. Our love is always set, always the same. We change bodies, but not hearts, not souls. And it is there, within our souls, where the pain resides. Now, as we approach yet another battle in this bloody war, our relationships become strained; a history between us that can not be ignored, or denied. This is when love becomes a cell, where kindness hurts others, and the only relief is the brief period we can call our own, the grey dwelling where we reside between lives.The same scenes play again, without falter. I could recall to you the tale of a thousand lives in the space of an hour. In this life, for me, the battle began early. It was an accident. A stupid accident. It never should have happened.
It was the night of the new moon, and I had stayed late after school that day. A sophomore in high school with high ambitions; I took every chance I got to better myself and my education. I had simple plans in life: get into a good college, get a career, marry, have babies, and then die in my bed as an old woman. I had always felt like more was in store for me when I was a little girl, but by the time I entered high school I had realized that the feelings that I got and the powers I thought I had were all a dream and I had accepted, although reluctantly, that I would have a normal, boring life, just like everyone else. The entire night had a strange, uneasy feel to it. The tension practically buzzed in the air, and I found myself pausing in intervals to glance around. It was fully dark by then, and shadows draped over the land. A vision flashed behind my eyelids as my eyes drifted slowly shut, as though something had taken over my body.
A man, tall and slim. He had dark, black hair and eyes, and the palest skin imaginable. He practically glowed. God, was he beautiful! ‘The darkness always swallows the light.’ The man murmured. But the words, although the opposite of the murmurings of normal couples, were whispered into a girl’s ear, like a vow, sweet nothings between lovers. The girl was beautiful, truly a female Adonis. Blonde, short and slim, but well endowed. She looked like me, but she was far more beautiful than I could ever hope to be. She was more lovely than any other creature I had ever witnessed with my own eyes before that night. Then he took the girl into his arms gently and kissed her. Jealousy bloomed in my chest like a bright yellow hyacinth.
My eyes flew open when I collided with something. “Sorry” Instantly left my lips, until I realized that no one was there. I had a bad feeling settle in my gut, like a heavy stone, cold and hard. My eyes scanned carefully in the dark. A creature crouched there sinisterly. The thing was black, its arms were long, reaching past its knees with legs just as long. Its fingers were tipped with long, sharp, glistening claws It was thin, and the ebony was streaked with dark, wet, crimson stains. It growled at me with hard eyes. A scream built in my throat, and it bubbled forth into a scream any banshee would be proud of. The thing leapt to its feet and swung it’s long arm. Blood, thick and red gushed from the wound and streamed down my arm in a steady stream. My eyes filled with tears that begged to be shed as my legs were unable to bear the weight of my body and dropped out from beneath me. It was upon me instantly, bloodthirsty eyes searching for the softest, fleshiest parts of me to devour first. I witnessed the monster come to a decision. It was going for my throat first.
The monster leaned in, the stench of blood on its breath. I attempted to escape the smell by retreating, though I soon discovered that there was no escape from this creature, this demon. My eyes sought the moon, sheathed in black, as I accepted my death. When I had thought of my death before, I had never once pictured dying at the hands of a horrible beast. I closed my eyes as wet droplets dripped upon my cheek, and then a river flowed over my torso. The smell was sharp and iron-like. Blood. But not mine. A high pitched squeal followed soon after, and my eyes flew open.
My eyes met a pair of darker, black ones. Just like the eyes in my daydreams. The wind lifted black hair and tousled it gently. He glanced my way, and I locked eyes with him. I could see the pain in my eyes reflected in his. He offered me his hand that day, and when I took his hand in mine, an electric jolt slid up my arm and down my spine. Then I knew. This boy would be someone very special to me one day. He rescued me that night, and still somehow managed to kill me at the same time. Given the choice, I probably would have chosen death the quick way, the painless way; at the hands of I know now was a dhura. I fell in love with my partner, even before we bonded to become what we are today.
To become true partners, a bonding ceremony is held. We cannot marry or have children; it is explicitly forbidden. The bonding ceremony between partners serves somewhat like a marriage of the two souls, till final death do we part. But once bonded, there is no such thing as a divorce, as you are bonded at the core, at the soul. Those whose bond is broken go insane, as a part of themselves is ripped away with the other. It has been many eons since a bond has been broken, as the results are far too terrible, leading to the other executing the “broken ones”, as they are called after going insane, simply to put them out of their misery. Such a fate would never stand for my partner and I, we would be together forever, as we are meant to be. We were perfect for each other, designed as two halves of a whole. So much has happened since that day…