I was beside grandfather when he caught the illness. We were playing chess when he suddenly started to get into a cough fit. I asked him if we should stop, I was losing anyway and there was no reason for any farther to play. But grandfather just pushed it off and said that it wasn't anything that needed special attention to, so we kept on playing. I'd destroyed two of grandfathers pons, but he had already captured many of my walls, knights, and pawns. All seemed like I was going to lose, nothing could be done about that, than, grandfather started to cough again. This time, it was a horrible cough and I could see blood dripping from his saliva when he coughed.
At any moment given to anyone, I froze up and thought up of only one thing. Find help. I raced out of the room that we had been and into my father and mother's room. Father seemed to have known what I had come about. He rushed out of the room without me saying a word and bolted away to my grandfather's room to help him. Mother kept me aside though I wanted to see what was going on.
When grandfather had been raised into bed, a local priest came to see what had happened. He didn't do much, and he much didn't do anything that would make grandfather well again. He just said that grandfather was terribly ill with a sickness unknown to him. But he did prescribe a medicinal herb that would kill any pain that grandfather was having.
Days passed and each day, grandfather's condition worsened. At night, I would sneak into his room, my father, asleep by the edge of his bed and worried about his father. Grandfather would be awake, his eyes wide and red, and his face all pale white. He seemed not to notice me every time I entered. But I didn't mind, I checked up on grandfather until the day I was called into his room.
Father had told me that grandfather requested my presence. At first, i didn't know what was going on, but I obeyed. I went into grandfather's room and to my surprise, he was sitting upwards, but his face was still pale with death and his eyes were a blooded red mess.
Grandfather motioned for me to come close, and so I had. I sat beside him and looked up to his face. Sadness and regret welled up inside me up knowing that it would be the last time I was going to see of my dear grandfather.
Grandfather spoke to me in a small, soft, and weak voice. "Dear boy, you must never be afraid to join the afterlife." he said.
I was confused at those words. I didn't know what he was trying to tell me.
"Hope can never be lost. even if one is in great poverty, you must look up to the skies and earth and ask the gods to have faith and mercy upon you," Each word grandfather had mustered to speak, I knew was very painful. I'd pressed my lips together and looked up, unflinching at his state. "they will guide you if you allow them to guide you...now...I must pass..." Grandfather breathed in a shallow breath and then, his eyes rolled in his head and then flopped down.
I cried, and cried until mother and father came into the room. With them, they had grandmother. When she saw that her husband had died, she fainted, later to be awaken in bed, but with the same type of illness that grandfather had.
Grandmother later died and was buried alongside grandfather. Friends of grandmother and grandfather came to the funeral. There had never been a sadder day than when grandmother and grandfather both died.
A few months after grandfather and grandmother died, mother and father had news that I was going to have a baby sister or brother. At that time, when my joy and hope had been overshadowed by grief, something had swelled inside me that gave me hope for a brighter future. I thanked Isis for this blessing for which she gave our family.
A while passed and everyone, including me, were in total happiness, but then, the royal court issued that any able men be enforced into the royal army for war. My father had to leave us, not knowing that he was never going to return to see his new family member.
Weeks passed and weeks became months. Mother had gone in total disarray and was constantly asking where her husband had gone. Praying to the gods and asking them mercy upon her. She had already lost four children before me. her mother and father had been caught in a flood and died, and her father-in-law and mother-in-law had both died. Now she was losing her husband.
But even if the gods had heard mother back then, they couldn't have done anything to get father back. When war finally stopped, news came of father's statues. The news was awful. Terrible on my poor mother who had prayed for father's safety. Father had died in the last battle, but before he had passed on, he had requested to someone saying that his wife's newborn child be named Yu. A foreign name meaning reason and understanding.
Mother was devastated at what had happened to father. She fell into deep depression and was had to be put in bed for the remainder of the time she was expecting Yu.
When the time came for Yu to come, there were terrible shouting and screaming throughout the house. I prayed to the gods to help my mother out of this. Hours passed on what had seemed like years and it seemed like my prayers had helped my mother. By dawn, I had a younger brother. Yu.
Yu was keen and reasonable, like his name, beyond any other baby I ever met. He loved to be cheerful and laughed a lot. I was happy, and so was mother and Yu.
But, a month after Yu was born, mother collapsed all of a sudden and by mid-night, she died.
Yu and I were orphans now. We had nowhere to go and no one to take care of us. I gathered a few supplies and thick blanket for Yu and I and left the house, just after we buried mother into the ground. We disappeared into the little desert forest where life there seemed hard for anyone, but not for us. I took care of Yu and myself pretty well and when Yu turned two years of age and I was just five, we started to learn new things together, and Yu still had his bright and carefree nature as he had as a baby.
But, even though we lived away from the others in the little desert forest, it didn't mean that we didn't go into town once in awhile, and whenever we did, we went to the graves of our family. Sometimes Yu would ask me how they were when they were alive.
At best, I could only answer that they were very nice people.
And wished that he could have gotten to know them.