The early morning light trickled through the glass of my old room, pooling on my face and arms. A heavy yawn passed my lips and I sat up, my sleepy eyes taking in the scenery. Scents filled the air, both old and new...even Scarlet's smell lingered about the old place. SCARLET! I jumped up from my bed and began to search the room for her presence...nothing, not even a-. I cocked my head seeing a sticky note discarded on the desk.
Sorry to leave you so suddenly but I have urgent business at home. Please don' t worry about me. I'll be fine. I know that you still mourn Hunter's death but do not despair, I have a feeling he is closer to you than you could ever realize.
My hand lightly touched the note, as if I expected it to crumble under my fingers. She...left, without saying good bye...she...she wouldn't. Why would she leave? Scarlett where are you? Leaving the note, I turned and walked to my door. The house was silent, an eerie ticking of the old grandfather clock my only companion. I wasn't sure where my mother had gone, maybe she had left early for work. It felt weird being in my house after all that had happened. The pictures seemed so full of life, holding many promises for the smiling boy who had been in front of the camera lens.
I jerked my head away, holding back my tears and an angry scream. How could I have been so blind! I thought that my life was dull, boring, and destined to continue that way....I was a fool. I had everything to make any normal person happy. I had a mother that loved me, I was about to graduate high school, and I had the greatest friend (almost girlfriend) any man would have wanted. I was blind to all the good, only seeing the bad. I threw my everything I had, away....and for what?! So that I could steal the souls of people who were just like me? Taking their life when they focused on all the bad and wrong...never seeing that their life was perfect.
I shook my head and ran out the front door, maybe Scarlet would be at her house? The world seemed to fly by as I sprinted, my legs burned from the motion and my heart throbbed in my chest. When I finally reached her house, my fist pounded on the door. Minutes passed and no one answered, I was beginning to become frantic until the door handle trembled and swung open. The putrid stench of alcohol filled my nose and made me take a step back coughing.
"Yea..." the man slurred, taking another swing from a brown bottle. "What 'da you...want...cha' brat?" Scowling at the drunken man, I took a breath, trying not to breath in his stench.
"Is Scarlet here?" The man gave a chuckle, hiccuping a few times in between his cackling. Pointing a finger at me, his eyes lazily rolled in their sockets.
"You mean my little bitch of a daughter? Nah' she ain't here...prolly sleeping at some guys house...lettin' him fuck her...you know?" He laughed some more. I clenched my teeth and balled my hands into fists. This was Scarlet's father?! Why hadn't she told me?! All those words he called her, making her out to be some slut...it made something snap within me. Tightly grasping the pendant around my neck, I whispered my name and shifted into a soul stealer. I flared my wings and snarled at the man.
He yelped and fell back, dropping his bottle to shatter on the steps. His eyes were wide and bloodshot, quickly he rubbed his eyes thinking it might make me disappear. I shook my head and took a step forward. The man leaned back then unsteadily stood and tried to stagger back into the house. Before he could escape I grabbed the back of his shirt and tossed him back to the floor. He began sobbing and begged for mercy as I pointed my scythe at his neck.
"You call your very own daughter and my girlfriend a bitch and make her out to be some five dollar slut?! What kind of father are you?! Drinking yourself into oblivion while she picks up after you! You disgust me!" I pushed the blade against his cheek making a small cut, a rivulet of blood streaking down his skin. "You are no father, Scarlet deserves better! I brought back the blade, watching as his eyes clamped shut and he sobbed into his hands. Snot, tears, and slobber dripping across his stained shirt.
Then reality reached me, What would Scarlet think of me if I killed her father...she'd be free but...she'd hate me. Despise me and cast me aside. Repressing a heavy snarl, I picked the man up by his throat causing him to make jerky movements a gag.
"Sober up, stay sober or I will come back and I will steal your soul! I dare not think where it might go, Heaven? Hell? Or someplace in between?!" The man nodded and whimpered, his eyes shut. I tossed his against the couch and turned, shifting back into my human disguise and leaving Scarlet's home.
"Lovely job...I'm shocked you didn't kill him." A sinister voice teased. My eyes burned as I noticed Cain and two other guys standing 10 feet away, I could tell that the others were soul stealers as well. One was very tall and skinny, the other short and buff.
"Where's Scarlet?" I growled, taking a step towards them. Cain wagged a finger.
"Come back to the pond, with the lake and willow tree nearby. We can talk there. Be there by midnight tonight. Not a second later or she dies." In a sudden rush of air, the three seemed to evaporate. I narrowed my eyes and wanted to scream to the heavens but now I had to keep a cool head. They had Scarlet and I had to save her.
I walked slowly and cautiously up to the spot Cain had described the meeting. An uneasy quiet and calm seemed to envelop the place, no crickets chirped and no birds sang. Then the willow tree came into focus and I released a horrified gasp. Two unconscious figures lay against it's trunk. Scarlet?! and my Mother?!