Outside the hospital, Cain sat impenitently waiting, his glance turned to me. He looked a bit perturbed when he stood and gestured for me to follow him. It was hard to keep up with him, he seemed to just teleport form one place to the next without any warning. I had no idea where we were going till we reached the park at the outskirts of the city. Cain stopped allowing me to catch my breath while he spoke.
“I’m going to show you what a Souls Stealer is and what we do. From there you will start your first assignment and we’ll go from there. First, shifting from your human disguise into your true form.” True form, I cocked my head at the statement. Wasn’t I already a Soul Stealer? Cain must have sensed my thoughts, his hand moving to a pendant around his neck. Under his breath, he whispered his name, I gasped at his sudden change in appearance.
The once normal looking 17 year old was now something I had never fathomed in my wildest dreams or darkest nightmares. His eyes proceeded to shift in color, keeping their normal green but the whites of his eyes became dark as onyx. Wings, black as a raven’s, grew from his back and he smirked at my expression. His shoulders shifted and his wings stretched as a scythe manifested in his waiting hand. He had become a Harbinger of Death.
“Well?” he asked, looking expectantly at me. “This is what you gave up your humanity for.” My breath hitched in my throat, I couldn’t find any words to voice my excitement, fear, and horror. It was as if someone had knotted my stomach up into tight little bundles. This is what I had become? What would Scarlett think if she saw me like that? I shook my head. I wasn’t even supposed to be thinking of her, as far as Scarlett knew I was dead. Cain pointed his scythe’s gleaming blade and me and smirked.
“What are you waiting for? Take the pendant in your hand and say your name.” He then rested the weapon lazily on his shoulder as he waited. My eyes looked down to the pendant around my neck and my shaky hand clasped it. My breath wavered in and out as I whispered my name.
“Hunter.” Electricity shot through my body and drove me to the ground on my hands and knees. My face contorted as my body ached and writhed. It felt like someone was driving nails into my back, while my wings sprouted, grew, and feathered. My eyes slammed shut and I gasped for air, trying my best not to scream and cry out in agony. Finally the shift was over and I lie on the ground, sweat poured off my face while I felt the weight of my new appendages lying against my back.
They were exactly like his, black as the night. In my hand a tall, lustrous scythe appeared. The blade was shaped unlike any other weapon I had seen, the handle intricately carved with black ribbons bound around it. A warm sense of pride filled me as though I had completed something very important and had been rewarded for it. Cain stood over me, laughing as I tried to recover from the shift.
“Don’t worry Hunter, it only hurts that bad the first time.” I smirked mockingly back at him, using a hand to push me from the ground so I could stand. My feet locked into the ground as I uneasily stood, growing used to my new body.
“So now I’m a Soul Stealer, eh?” I asked Cain, rolling my shoulders and stretching my wings. “Do you mind if I just take a night to stroll, I don’t think I’ll be able to start just yet.” When I finished the last word of my sentence, Cain’s blade was just centimeters from my throat. His shadowy green eyes peered into mine, searching and watching. He sighed and drew away, allowing me to swallow the lump in my throat.
“Not in that form, you need to shift back into your human disguise.” He shrugged and turned away his wings lifting him a few feet in the air. “Just repeat the process.” Cain’s eyes met mine again. “Do not go looking for your friend, lest she pay dearly for your mistake. Understand?!” There was no kindness in his voice, only a dangerous ice that chilled my insides. I nodded, not letting a word pass my lips. Cain turned and soared off into the night. Leaving me at the park, not too far from where my house was.
I bit my lip and mulled over running verses flying, I’d rather get there faster. With a large swoosh; I was in the air and marveling at the feeling of flight. It was amazing, one of the greatest things I had ever experienced. Scanning the glowing houses, I finally recognized mine, the only problem was landing. In the end I just skidded to a halt on my shoes, using my scythe to steady me.
Cautiously I moved to the window, a small smile curling on my lips at the sight of my sleeping mother and Scarlett. They were surrounded by empty tissue boxes and used tissues. Go inside? Stay here? Again I felt the battle raging inside me, one side telling me to go inside waked them and tell them everything. The other half wanted nothing to do with them. I sighed and compromised.
Slowly, I opened the door and stepped inside, tucking my wings behind me so I could move freely. My mother was resting against Scarlett as the two slept soundly. I moved around the couch and wrapped my arms around Scarlett, cradling her like a child. She looked so beautiful when she was sleeping. I kissed her lightly on the forehead and placed her in a seperated chair. Grabbing an adjacent blanket, I wrapped her up and ran my hand along her cheek. A heavy pain and saddness burned in my heart while I looked at her.
"Scarlett," I whispered, turning away and placing a blanket on her. "Good bye mom," I said softly. My hand went to the pendant, I whispered my name and I was back looking as if I hadn't died. Except that my skin kept the grey hint of death. With one last look at the two most importaint people in my life, I shut off the lights and stepped back out into the dying night. I just wish that I could tell you Scarlett. I thought moving away.