The glowing light seemed to be getting brighter with each step, the darkness around it keeps getting slightly more foreboding. It seems as though the path I had turned down was the wrong one. Grassy hills blocked me on both sides, and the moon was hidden behind clouds, which made whatever path I should be following even more impossible to find.
My boots had been completely demolished by the terrain, the muddy marsh had consumed the top half up to my ankles with mud and water with the rest seeming to be become increasingly wet with the shower of rain that had just started. Just my luck. The hour was late and the moon was full, a dark night to be out on my own but I had no choice.
My fortunes had not fated me well this year, it was nearly the end of this hellish time and my fortunes seemed to be getting worse. If that was even possible. The howling in the distance was making the hairs on my skin stand up, like soldiers preparing for battle. Something was clearly going to happen, or so my spider senses were telling me.
The growling of my stomach was loud enough so that whatever was out there could probably hear me coming. Then again I wasn’t making an effort to be quiet, stealth had never been my strong point and I was always one for making my good skills better and procrastinating on my bad skills. The world had taught me the hard way that in this life you needed a talent, something for people to rely on you for. Otherwise you are useless, feelings and emotions don’t matter to those out there that only seek money and wealth. By those out there, I mean everyone I’ve ever met so basically I haven’t met many people. Although… I wasn’t one for being nice to others either. In this world you climb the ladder of life alone and everyone around you is climbing the same ladder and they will do anything to stop you reaching the top. Only one person can be on the top at one time… That person used to be me but in this life the person at the top doesn’t stay there very long. My power struggle took me centuries to reach the top yet I reigned for only a few years. A good few years they were. Ask anyone and they would agree. My throne was stolen from me.
That’s how I got myself into this dark situation, I needed to be here and I was determined to complete my mission yet that didn’t make it any easier. The rain was at full force currently and the wind was picking up speed too, yet the grassy hills were sheltering me so they did have an advantage yet their disadvantage was that anyone could sneak up on me down here. I was completely vulnerable and that made me shake in my soggy boots. I had no protectors out here.
The clouds weren’t clearing. The darkness was spreading and the night would be long. The ground was damp and my feet were sinking which made it impossible to stop; I was forced to walk and quickly, otherwise I would lose my boots. Losing a boot isn’t something I would want to risk, especially because I had no idea how long I’d been walking or how long I would have to continue walking; also, these were the only boots I owned. Each step was hard, the ground seemed to be pulling me in. Grabbing at my ankles and trying to drag me down so I had to keep moving, my pace was a quick one and it was tiring. I had been at this speed since I had started this hill path and right now I was really feeling the pain. My legs were burning, the trousers I was wearing were sticking to me, my top was doing the same and the general weather seemed to be a metaphor for my mood…
I sighed, a heavy one that allowed my breathing to come out in a large puff of white smoke, clearly the night was cold and if I didn’t get a move on I’d be out here all night. That was a situation I really didn’t want to put myself in as the stories or myths the people told to me were enough to make anyone’s skin crawl.
The stories were dark and of the old ways, the ways long before me and my kind and long before the people who came before us. The old ways were interesting and I was curious but they were banned upon my own decree. A stupid law.
At court, I was desired and praised for simply breathing, my wit would fill the room with laughter and not the horrid kind. My smile would bring tears to the people’s eyes and my heart would be wanted by women and men alike. I was at the top of my game, someone to be feared and loved, someone to want, someone to aim for and someone to be taken down. However, now I was completely alone and some would say rightly so but is it anyone’s true nature to be alone or are we all searching for the second half of ourselves that cannot be found. The part of ourselves that lies within another. I thought I had that. For decades we roamed the wilderness with each other, two parts of a soul. Or so I thought.
I’m not sure if it was the rain pouring down my face or tears from remembering the past. It stung my heart to think of the good times because they were gone. He was gone. Time seemed to slow and memories danced in front of my face. Nights spent gazing under the stars with nothing but my scarf and each other’s body warmth to keep from freezing. Long walks within lost woods and undiscovered trails that were completely untouched by mankind. Everything gone. He’d gone. It was chaos yet clarity when I was with him. The old memories faded and the more recent of him flooded into my brain. The silences held for hours between us only to end in yelling and fighting. Fist to fist, heart to heart, mouth to mouth. It would always end the same. He thought he could tame my destructive nature and I thought I could bend him to my will but really we would not fit together. Our blood did not share the same colour. We were not one of the same puzzle but instead two broken pieces that when pressed together chipped away at one another. We ended. It was inevitable but still I didn’t want it to happen.
Now I realized I was crying. I’d stopped in the middle of the path and I was beginning to sink, my hands were covering my head as the tears poured from my eyes. I was weak. I began to scratch, a coping mechanism I’d developed as a teen and kept all through my years. The flesh began to tear away. My sobs grew louder but I assumed no one was within miles of me. My nails were short to prevent the flesh tearing so quickly but it didn’t make a difference. The blood fell in puddles first from my arms. They were scarred and bruises and now bloody. Without hesitation my hands began clawing at my face, ripping the layers of skin of – allowing blood to mix with rain and tears. I was howling in pain but not from my cuts simply from the internal pain that was far worse than any other. He was gone and I blamed myself yet I could not change. You cannot change the colour of someone’s blood and that is what he was asking. Not directly of course and I never asked him but to live alongside each other we needed the same blood colour and we although close shared not the same. He bled a sweet, wild blue, like the colour of the southern seas in the summer. I bled a darker more destructive blue, like northern sea, corrupt and controlling, ambitious and pedantic. We may share the name blue but our souls were not aligned, the gods did not make us together and then half us like many true soul mates. We belonged to difference halves but that didn’t mean I would accept it…
I’d fallen to my knees, the mud mixing with my blood and tears. The world seemed to be spinning and my head felt light, the thoughts of him racing through my mind. The mud was cold against my skin; little bumps had formed on every part of my skin. I felt utterly alone, my journey it seemed had come to an end.
“Venture?” a familiar voice said…