I looked up to see that Wisteria was right Kunichi's arm melting away like water. I dipped my brush back in the water and wiped at the paint again this time along his other arm, it too melted away. Kunichi stood there armless and screaming in Japanese. I let out a sigh of relief.
"You did it," said Carmine excitedly giving my shoulder a squeeze.
Now that the excitement had passed, everyone was heading back to the house to find something else to entertain them. I looked up to see Jenera come outside and move to Kunichi's side. He was still angry and he looked at me vehemently when I moved toward them. Jenera placed her hand reassuringly on his chest in order to calm him down, then moved over to me.
"You can't leave him like this, Cobalt." She said tears beginning to well up in her eyes.
I shook my head, refusing to do what she was suggesting, "I can't give him back his arms, he'll kill somone, besides the paintings ruined now."
She nodded and a tear slipped down her cheek, "Then I'm afraid you must destroy him completly."
I took a step back, apalled at what she was suggesting, "No, I can't do that." Fear gripped me and I felt like I couldn't breathe.
"You must, Cobalt," she screamed at me, "You have stolen his honor, the least you can do is take his life as well. Do not make him live his life without honor."
"But I don't know how to destroy him," I yelled back at her.
Her face relaxed and she smiled sadly, "I think you do Cobalt, you did it once before."
I looked at her, tears welling in my own eyes now. She knew? No one knew about that. Of course she was my creation, a part of myself, they both were. "If I destroy the painting, you'll be destroied too."
She nodded, "Yes, but it is obvious that we do not belong here. I will sacrifice myself to save Kunichi's honor."
I shook my head, swallowing back my tears, "I can't do it, Jenera." Anger was welling up inside me again. I had promised myself I would never paint again and I had broken that promise, I couldn't break it any farther.
"You must, Cobalt." She was angry, which surprised me. Her voice softened as she said, "Do it for Rachel."
I nodded, tears sliding down my cheek as I moved toward the painting. I looked over to see that Jenera had moved to where Kunichi kneeled, armless on the ground. He looked at me vehemently but I could sense that he was glad that I would be in a sense, restoreing his honor. I caught eyes with Jenera and she nodded. I grited my teeth and gripped the painting in both hands, lifting it above my head, and with a scream, smashed the painting down on a rock.
I looked up to see Kunichi and Jenera turn to dust and blow away on the wind. I closed my eyes, memories now flooding back. I picked up a fragment of the painting a portion with Jenera's smiling face. I looked out into the beckoning woods, they were calling my name, just like they had that spring day four years ago.
Without a second thought I ran towards the wood, still clutching the fragment of the painting. I didn't stop until I was a good distance from the house. I fell to the ground underneath a tree and wept. I stayed there until the sun began its decent and that's where Carmine found me.