Guiltless

On the 11th of January 1937 Johnathon Ignes is born. He is a suitable weight, in good health...but different from all the other babies in the ward, because he is born immune to guilt. 2 years and 235 days later, worldwide war breaks out.
Sent away as an evacuee, Johnathon grows up away from his mother, and meets Erebus, a cheeky paperboy. Erebus too, has no guilt, and under his influence, Johnathon grows up into a monster.
This is the story of how that monster, became a leader.
- The prequel to 'Souls' (but will make sense if you haven't read it) -

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56. Chapter 55

Adele was rushed to hospital, and fortunately suffered no long-term injuries. In fact, the doctors and nurses couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her.

19/10/1999:

Two days had passed since Adele was admitted to hospital, and still no developments had arised. It was the most frustrating thing in the world for Johnathon, but also the most relieving. Adele and their baby were both safe, and even if he didn’t know why they were ever at risk, he at least knew whilst she was in hospital it wouldn’t happen again. Adele too, couldn’t piece together quite what had happened. All she knew what that she felt sick, ran upstairs, vomited, and started coughing up blood, after that she passed out. Johnathon had tried to steer clear of her bedside whilst she was awake, because he looked more ill than she did. Unable to sleep, his eyes were bloodshot and saggy, and his resting expression was so gloomy his ghost-white skin seemed grey. He didn’t want to worry her with his own concerns, and so he tended to visit her whilst she slept, and spend most of his day pestering the doctors for more information.

No-one knew anything though. It was a mystery to everyone why Adele had a funny turn, and they were beginning to call it a one off, if they hadn’t found anything by the third day, then she’d be discharged. This, however, only nerved Johnathon more. What if it happened again and he wasn’t there to help her? What if they were wrong? What if there was something seriously wrong with her? He couldn’t help but worry, and he wasn’t the only one. Eloise too, spent hours contemplating what to do. At first this shocked Johnathon, after all, she wasn’t all too pleased about the baby, when he asked her why she was so concerned she simply answered,

“This may come as a shock to you, but I’d like Adele to live a long and happy life.”

It seemed that Eloise’s words had been truthful, for after two days of nothing, she brought in someone who might actually be able to help, her nephew, Peter.

The last time Johnathon had seen Peter he was just four years old, and still clung to his mother’s leg as if it were a walking stick. Since then a lot had changed. Now twenty-eight, Peter had become a young adult. According to Eloise, he was currently a medical student, but in her eyes he was already a doctor, he’d ‘read enough books on about everything to do with health to put even the most experienced of doctors to shame’, though he did detect some hyperbole on her behalf. Peter was her nephew, of course she’d try to big him up. Still, he was Johnathon’s best bet. Adele would be discharged soon, and he needed to know what was wrong with her.

Peter didn’t exactly leak confidence. With all his lip biting, eyebrow raising, and hand shaking...and his eyes never seemed to relax, always alert and analytical. Just standing next to him made Johnathon nervous. He tried to focus on other details about him. He had the same blue eyes as when he was just a boy, and his hair was the same pale blonde shade as Eloise’s. He seemed to think checkered shirts and dark wash jeans were a good combination, despite the looks he received from people as he passed them by. He was just your average student in Johnathon’s opinion.

As soon as he was taken to Adele, Peter got to work. He looked back over her test results, took her blood pressure, and asked her a bunch of questions which all seemed to be irrelevant to the matter at hand. Adele lay there patiently and let him study her, whilst Johnathon stood twitching and twiddling his thumbs. When Peter was at last finished, he bore a dumbfounded expression on his face.

“I can see why the doctors are confused,” Peter said to Johnathon, once they had both left the ward, “Nothing like this has ever happened before.”

“Do you know what’s wrong with her?” He asked Peter, tried of hearing the same thing over and over.

“I have a theory.” Peter nodded, “But I’ll need my aunt’s help to test it.”

“What do you need me to do?” Eloise inquired, intruding their conversation. Peter jolted, and Johnathon sighed, neither one of them had realised that she had been listening.

“I need you to look into Adele’s soul” Peter announced. Johnathon’s brow creased, why would Peter need her to do something like that to a normal?

“Why? Everyone knows she’s normal.” Eloise was just as confused as Johnathon was.

“Yes, but how normal?” Peter phrased his idea carefully leaning in closer to the two of them, “When you look at a Soul you see different things for different people, like how Johnathon’s is a lighter shade that Erebus’s, or how Tao wants to be alone whilst Hannah likes to live in a pack. Can’t you do the same for normals? Can’t you see how evolved they are? Some must be more evolved than others, or else Souls wouldn’t have been born in the first place.”

“I suppose I might be able to rate it on a scale of one to ten,” Eloise decided, “But why?”

“I think I know what’s happening to Adele, and if I’m right, then Johnathon’s going to have to make a very difficult decision.”

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