"Merda," I swore under my breath as Rhea fled. She'd been grasping at excuses - I knew it: she didn't.
I recognised her now. She had Scarly's eyes but Sam's mannerisms. They were good people. I owed them everything.
I figured that helping Rhea would pay that debt.
I headed back to camp. Raz and Nicoletta crowded me the instant I appeared; both ignored my scowl.
"What was it?" Nicoletta demanded.
"Who was it, you mean," I corrected with a stern glance. Nicoletta rolled her
"Answer the question, Monny," Raz nudged me.
My eyes flickered around. I noticed some of our comrades were listening anxiously. I smiled reassuringly at them as I pulled my best friends to one side. I met their gazes solemnly. "It was Rhea (Greenway?)."
They gaped at me. Only they knew of my story.
When I was nine, I was 'discovered'. My parents fought actively but they'd wanted to keep from the fighting. They were well aware of the casualty statistics and constantly lived in fear of me joining the numbers.
Unfortunately, even then I had a flair for mischief. I had a run-in with one of the Supernatural Creatures military leaders. Instead of being angry, he appreciated my talent for tactical thinking at such a young age as well as my natural leadership capabilities. I was a dream come true for the fanatics at the top. I could lead. I could fight. I could plan. I wasn't afraid.
But I was still raw. They took me away from my parents and began training me. By the time I was eleven, I was ready to enter the field - actively. A soldier at such a young age was uncommon amongst creatures but not unheard of.
I was placed in my parents unit for two years. Ivory and Jet Redpath: reknowed for their ability to get all their unit out of tricky situations alive.
Except one time, they didn't.
There are no words to decribe how I felt watching my parents cut down along with my 'aunts' and my 'uncles' in the unit. The humans slaughtered every last one.
I tried to slip away but one of them spotted me. I can still feel the bullet slamming into my back. I'd cried out but continued to crawl away even though the pain was blinding me. I still remember the humans debating whether or not to kill me.
"Let her go."
"So she can grow up to be a killer bent on revenge?"
"She's a kid!"
"Everyone was once: that's no excuse."
"Forget her, guys, the wound's deep: she won't last the night..."
They'd let me flee. I think I'll always regret that in a way. They burnt the bodies of my family. Rhea was lucky in that respect; after all she got to visit her family and find closure. I couldn't.
However, the humans were right: I should have died that night.
Except Samuel (Greenway?) found me.
He was a Supernatural Human and he truly was humane. He carried me back to his home so his wife and he could nurse me back to full strength. There is no equal for Scarlett and Samuel's compassion.
Sure, they'd believed in the war but they disagreed with many aspects of it: the senseless killing for one. They believed in mercy.
That's what got me thinking about the war. They were second parents to me: if we could show mercy - even love - towards one another, couldn't we all?
I didn't stay long which is probably why Rhea doesn't remember me but I remember all three of them vividly. I even attended the funeral.
Raz and Nicoletta had wanted to know my reasons for persuing my cause. I told them because I believe in honesty.
"Monny... you made an oath that you'd protect her if you ever crossed paths again," Nicoletta said, uncertainly. I sighed.
"Yeah, I know but..." my voice trailed away.
"What?" Raz peered into my face.
"I also took an oath to protect these people," I finished, "I have to stay to ensure the wards are strong."
"This is true, I have to stay for a similar reason," Nicoletta nodded.
I looked at Raz. He knew what was coming and was already shaking his head.
"No, Monny, no way," he said emphatically.
"C'mon, Raz, this is the only way I can fulfill that oath! I can send you
to protect her like no one else except me and Nicoletta. Better even: you're so good at the human facade that you can get close."
"Monny," Raz groaned in defeat. I grinned and threw my arms around him.
"You're the best, Raz!" I exclaimed, kissing him on the cheek.