I never divided chapters for this story, just parts, so that's why it's so long. It is complete and I am writing a sequel to the Guardian, The Girl. ENJOY
My country is dying. Vicious wars spread through out the land. Not that a war would faze me much since my father. My father the ambassador of our country, Willolonia, was with the king further south to keep the Chez Republic from coming after us. I cared deeply for my country and only wished it the very best with my life. Anyway, with my father being ambassador of Willolonia means I have developed a skill of fighting strategies. My father also being considered royalty it means the eldest would marry in my case this is where my problem kicks in.
My name is Sara, I am seventeen, and I am due to be married. Hopefully, it’ll be delayed for the sixth time. I didn’t want to marry especially to an old friend. His name was Jason Skeleington. He was an old childhood friend, nothing more. Now he is nineteen and he is over aged to be married, but we were able to have exceptions. I don’t like him, I haven’t seen him in eight years then my father and mother announced that I am betrothed to him. This was unfair to me. The very thought of my name to be Skeleington made my stomach drop a thousand miles.
The Patrick’s, my family, consists of: my fifty-six year old father, Philippe Patrick, who is at war, my mother, Elena Patrick: red hair, fair green eyes, and a perfect healthy body for a forty-nine year old. My two sisters, the twins, Jessie and Jessica: each seven, red, fire hair, hazel eyes, and cute smiles. Jessica liked to paint, and Jessie liked to sing. And last, me: Sara Patrick, black hair, popping, sky, blue eyes, white skin, and the one who doesn’t want a royal life.
You hear of little girls saying, “When I grow up, I want to be a princess.” When you grow up to be the ambassador’s daughter, you are counted as royalty, but I don’t wish to be saved by a dragon and get carried away on a white steed and live happily forever after with Prince Charming. The way I act is my own way, I don’t wish to be royalty but I do pay my debt to my country by marrying my father’s choice, that is the only thing princessy about being me.
I would take my father’s side on the warfare. Hey, I’m his first born daughter, I’m his little girl, no matter if I have sisters or not, I was his favorite secretly. He taught me how to use weapons we were allowed to have in the mansion. Our weapons would be hidden or told that they were artifacts from previous victories with wars. I knew how to shoot an arrow, I knew how to throw a star, break a thick stick with my knee and head-butt somebody. This is my side of royalty.
I tied my black hair in a tight round bun and clicked my engagement necklace in place and prepared as dawn was about to break into day. I got from my padded stool and my white dressed flowed behind me with thin layers of a flower design pattern in the lace. I opened my door and down the green hall with a purple carpet floor I went. To the stairs where I placed my hand on the winding staircase and the other hand holding my dress up. I kept my face serious. Today I was meeting my guardian. It was probably an old guy who would tell stories that would begin with, “When I was a boy…” yeah, yeah, yadda, yadda.
As I approached the end of the stairs Jason was waiting for me in a navy blue suit with gold buttons in two straight lines down his chest. His black hair was pulled back in a neat sophisticated manner. I took a light hold of his arm and he led me to the front door where Mother and Jessie and Jessica stood. Mother in her white, full-length dress with pink flowers on a curving branch down her shoulder to the opposite thigh, Jessie in her white puffy dress with a plastic white rose in the middle of her collar, Jessica in a white dress with a plastic flower with blue pedals and a white core. As to my surprise of my thought of an old man as a guardian was young, may as well be my age: seventeen. Only his face and eyes say he is young and strong, he had white hair that stretched down to his waist, his eyes were strong, a strong color, his eyes gray.
A determined gray, he was serious, yet a slight enlargement in his eyes when I came in the room. I assume it was because it was so cold of the environment. It was negative thirty-two and snowing. It always snowed here, it never stopped, not ever, but there was only six inches of snow here; it was unusually low. His skin was sun kissed; I could tell he was not our usual color skin. I could see it in him, in my mind he was pale, white skin, as white as the snow on the ground. But he had, sun kissed skin, gray eyes, and his wardrobe were red, heavy harem pants, a white pirate-like shirt, and a red robe that was tied around his waist, and the robe ended at his shins.
I stilled my face and kept it neutral as Jason stopped me in front of my guardian before I could trip on my white heels and fall flat on my face in front of him. I couldn’t for two reasons. One: I couldn’t and wouldn’t display myself in a visitor and not embarrass my family. Two: I didn’t want show I was clumsy like my usual self and Mother says it makes our family proper. I faced my guardian trying to keep my face strong and not interested.
“Sara Patrick,” Mother announced, the way you announce something when you give a speech. “I would like you to meet you guardian, who your father has chosen for you, Taylor Gore. Guardian,Taylor, do you wish to serve my daughter? Will you fight, kill, and die for Sara Patrick?” Mother asked placing her hand on top of the other in a secure way. “I do.”Taylorsaid bowing his head. “And Sara Patrick,” Mother continued. “Will you take Taylor Gore as your protection, security, and guardian?”
I looked into his gray eyes; I did not want to have a guardian. I was perfectly in security with my family in my house—technically, palace as a Buckingham-look-a-like; only smaller. I did not need protection. My father has the mind of war strategy, he has taught me well enough to fight in war, his own plans, the plans that has help our King James III win more than thousands of battles. He was the one who taught me everything of how to fight in battle, let alone a few assassins who could sneak past our large black steel gate fifteen feet from our doorstep. I could fight, I knew the fake and real weapons in the palace, I knew how to use them, and I had the gut to kill if I needed.
I looked down to my sister’s feet to my right and said, “I do.” But I wasn’t pleased. For the man who taught me everything in battles and even wars could have fetched me a guardian. And for only me, not Mother, not Jessie, nor Jessica; was it because I was betrothed? To Jason Skeleington? I was safe from any harm. “I welcome you.” I continued. “You may have my honor in you, Taylor Gore, my guardian as you protect me from the dangers that wait.”
I even put in a fake smile for Mother. I furrowed my brows in anger of Father thinking of me as a weak piece of the family. Mother and Jason saw my reaction with my response. I was no weaker than Jessie or Jessica, I was stronger. The sisters thought the weapons were just of plastic. Mother reacted quickly to my action and rescued my behavior towardsTaylor. “Thank you Taylor, my daughter, Sara is very thankful to have you as her guardian. Please you may sit at your position.”Taylorbowed his head towards Mother then with a quick glance turned to me and bowed his head. I kept my eyes down and my brows furrowed asTayloropened the large door and closed it behind him and from the large window from our sitting room that was open to our left, I observedTaylorsitting at the trunk of our Family Tree. No, not some paper diagram made for family history. Our tree was a secret hold of our family’s history of how long we have ruled by side with our kings. This tree is three hundred thirty-eight years of our family in royalty. I watched in my disappointment of Father’s decision.
Mother looked like she was disappointed with my behavior; Jason observed my reaction the whole time, and Jessie and Jessica stared at each other. I just lowered my head and closed my eyes in a squint with displeasement. I lifted my head to Mother’s gaze on me and hardened my expression more. “Let us have breakfast now.” She said only glaring at me. I had my hand still placed on Jason’s bent arm as he led me to the Dinning Hall. Mother led all of us to the long table able to seat sixty people. We sat where we usually seat. The first chair was left open for Father, Mother on the right side with Jessie and Jessica beside her. Jason and I sat to the left. The servants brought in our drinks.
Hot chocolate imported fromSouth America, for Jessie and Jessica. Coffee for Mother, Jason and I. It was silent as we drank. Then I wanted to avoid the awkward silence. I turned to Jessie, “Jessie?”
“Yes sister dear?”
“Have you written your letter to Father yet?” I asked taking another sip of my coffee. “No, not entirely, but I have been working on what I think I may say to Father when he is on the Chez Republic Border. Here.” Jessie answered taking out a folded sheet of paper and tossed it to me.
I read the only sentence on it.
“Dear Sir or Madman,”
I looked to Jessie. “That’s all I have so far.” She admitted. “Well,” I said. “I think you are doing a superb job.” I didn’t want to hurt my sister’s feelings but it was a little humorous I had to admit to myself.
Mother spoke out to me, “Oh, so now you wish make conversation?” I glared at Mother as she asked me the question. I did not wish to respond but I have to. “I just felt awkward whenTaylorwas in my sight.” Mother pretended as though she did not listen to me. “Sara,” mother began but I interrupted her. “No, Mother, I do not even wish to haveTaylorhere. What value is he to me? What value am I to him? Father knows I can fight. The question that only needs to be answered in this conversation is: How come I have a guardian, but you, Jessie, Jessica, and Jason do not have one? Please explain that to me Mother because I missed the point of why Father only wishes me to have a guardian when I am clearly the strongest in the family.”
Jason and the twins fell silent in my point of the disagreement. “Sara Patrick,” Mother reacted. “You should not judge what your Father’s concern for your safety.” I widen my eyes in surprise of her words. “Mother, there is only one reason why Father would get me a guardian. Now we may not know what that reason is, but I guarantee you, Mother, that reason has nothing to do with the safety of Jessie or Jessica, the two youngest in the family. Unless you know the reasons…do you?” I glared at Mother while she had her head bowed between her intertwined hands. I continued, “Is it because I am betrothed?” Mother’s head popped up in shock and her eyes were blazing with an anger I have never seen.
“Sara Cecile Patrick!” Mother exclaimed. “How dare you dishonor my and your father’s decision?” Jessie and Jessica were frightened scared and held each other tightly by shoulders and arms. “Now, you know Jason loves you and you have loved him since you were nine years of age. You remember you also have a duty to your country and King James III wouldn’t be pleased with a young woman by his side.”
“Who cares for King James’s side?” I snapped. “Sara!” Mother yelled but I ignored her. “And I am capable of fighting for my country as well and determined as Father. I don’t need King James III to bring me down so I could marry and have a family for a man to rule, it’ll be his fault for ignoring the capability of what I can do. And I don’t need you to judge me for asking you a question why the hell Father had gotten me a guardian.”
“Sara Cecile Patrick!” Mother screamed and pushing her chair backwards and her coming forward from her anger. “I have had enough of your words of Taylor, Jason, me, your father, and King James.” Mother did not faze me with her risen voice I took it like a professional keeping my face straight. “Now, I want you to go to your room until we call you down to discuss the argument later or we’ll discuss the wedding details.” I gotten from my chair and closed my eyes lightly as I turned around and left the Dinning Hall. Then without looking back and my eyes still closed I gripped the handle of the large entry door between here and the Sitting Room, I said to Mother, “Has it ever occurred to you that Father only gotten me Taylor because I was heir to control of our country’s armed forces?” and I walked my way to the stairs and jogged my way to my room not afraid to slow down. I jerked opened my door and slammed it shut with force. I refused to cry but my body was against me.
I wept for the reason of a profanity in front of my young sisters, for I have argued with Mother, and I miss Father deeply much. I cried because I was different from everyone in my past and present family. I was not the same as them, I yearned for the actual thrill of a fight, and I yearned to be by my father’s side right now just to see him in action. I wish I could undo my actions towards my family, toTaylor. I do not know what came over me when Father never told me I was to have a guardian until the letter came last night. I apparently hadn’t gotten my frustration out last moon.
Sometimes I pretend I have a choice, either I could have me thrilling life I desire so badly and help the safety while they suffer with the Queen Mary and help her with the politics in Willolonia; or I can stay here and rot in this palace and not live my biggest desire but help my family with politics.
But I live with helping my family and try to forget my desire and switch it for my duty to Willolonia. That is my princess life. I wish to wash this away; I need a reason to fill my hole in me that I need to full to keep me from going under everything else. I know I am right for I do not care nor even wish to care for my country’s politics; I care for protecting everything in this war. Without an army there is no country to have politics. I perfectly think I have a winning mind.
I sat on the edge of my window where a bench built in the wall I watched the snow fall like ashes in a fire. I shivered from my coldness I lived in. I never quite exactly knew why I lived in such a cold environment; call it destiny I guess.
What Mother said, “…Jason loves you and you have loved him since you were nine years of age…” it was not true. I have not seen Jason in eight years for some reason of disappearing and then re-appearing with my father and mother’s blessing to marry me without my consent. I do not love Jason, only old time, and a distant friend. I do not know how Jason is on behaving of this decision but I at least know he must think I am different. If I thought it, put it out, then people know.
From the angle of my window and my body position I hadTaylorin my sight. All he does is sit in place under our Family Tree and watch from head turn to head turn. He was alone in the snowing winter of here, he did not seem cold but he did know he was…and I knew very well too. I maybe stronger but that did not give me any reason to be selfish ad turn my back on people. I wanted to help my family, my country, but there was a lesson my father taught me once when I was ten:
* * *
“If you wish to protect something you make sure of the two things you must always remember: You never let the person get hurt… and… you must never get carried away with something. Cocky-ness turns to carelessness. Be careful.”
I was on my father’s lap, sipping my hot chocolate, under the palace with a thunder storm above us, by the fire place in the Sitting Room, Mother was asleep with the twins and it was as late as one in the morning. He was reading me The Three Musketeers. Athos, Portos, and Armais. It was my favorite childhood bedtime story. I ask Father, “Do the Musketeers swear to never let a person get hurt and never get cocky with a plan?” Father chuckled and smiled, “Yes, this is every hero’s duty to keep these promises when they protect something.” I thought wondering what Father does in battle. “Father,” I ask. “Do you keep these promises?” I looked up to him with my egger child eyes. “Yes. The only four persons I am protecting though while I am in battle is you, your mother and your two sisters.”
At that moment I knew he was protecting us. He still is. I ask him questions still; the exact same. Over and over; never stopping and that is my way of reminding I who I am and who I protect. No person could, would, or should get harmed while I am still standing. My family, my country, and to do this I will follow Father’s saying in life: “Put others before yourself; think of others before yourself.” This I follow as well.
* * *
I think of helpingTaylor. I got from my seat and the thought hit my brain like a bullet. I could not leave my room; Mother’s orders. I removed my hand from the doorknob and hugged it in my other palm. I glanced out once more atTaylorand followed my mind. I opened my door with caution and peered around to see an empty hallway. The servants just love to gossip and soon enough the gossip would leak into Mother’s ears. I walked to the stairs and jogged down as I skipped two steps. I made my way to the Dinning Hall and discovered it empty. I slow runned my way across the room to the Kitchen opening the double doors into a metal and tile room. Cooks, bakers, soup specialists paused their busy work to see me in their sight. The boiling water over the stove filled the Kitchen almost over powering the baking bread in the oven with butter and garlic. I let down my arms and made my distance as far as the drinks. Over the large counter I stood on my toes to see what it was like. Then around the corner of the counter a lean, tall, skinny-to-the-bone man with a white coat black trousers and a green band around his neck.
He stood incredible for his size, maybe as well as almost seven feet; my guess was as good as anyone else’s. “How may I help you, Lady Sara Patrick?” His voice proper and raspy little. “I would like a cup of tea.” I ordered and he stood with a smiled and his head jerked back to the counter, “Hurry!” he ordered his crew. “Don’t stand around shocked, Lady Sara has requested a cup of tea!” then people resumed to their work. I sat waiting for the leaf tea to be prepared in a wooden chair pushed under a wooden table.
Suddenly a figure with a firm hand was squeezing my shoulder and came around to sit next to me in chair. My eyes widened in shock from a startling action preformed by the lean tea maker. He looked tired and he sighed heavily. He looked me in the eyes, “You know Madam Skeleington—” I stopped him there, “Please, Lady Sara.” He nodded his head. “Yes, Lady Sara, I know it may not be a Tea Maker’s business but if you do not mind, Lady Sara,” he asked his voice worried. “Are you really truly happy with your life here?”
I looked to my hands that were pressed together tightly in my lap and sighed. “For my position in heir to Armed Forces of Willolonia I have to speak of truth. I am not happy with my life. I do not wish for it to end though, only that…only that it would be more exciting.” I lifted my head to the Tea Maker and asked a question that would be improper to Mother but she was not here now. “What tis your name if I may ask?” Tea Maker smiled and replied, “Pepe`. I was named after my father who’s name was Pepe` and named after his father who’s name was Pepper.” He chuckled and I did not want to chuckle with him if it was offensive to his and his father’s and his father’s, father’s name.
“Forgive me, Lady Sara, I speak of fathers and Ambassador Philippe, your father, a great man at war. Please accept my apologies.” Pepe` pleaded. I took my hand and placed it on his shoulder and saw his soul in his never empty eyes. It was cheery, giddy, one of an only kind to bring anyone up to their spirits. “Pepe` you needn’t worry for I like to hear my father protecting my family at war. That is why he is there, is he not?” Pepe` smiled and looked back to his station, then to me again, “Your father was a great man of heart, and I hope he will be here in time for your lovely wedding.” He got to his feet and started towards his station. I turned around quickly and said to Pepe`, “I only wish there was another reason my father would come back from war.” Pepe` turned around and said, “What is more important to him than you?” he continued to walk and brought me the tea. “Here you are Lady Sara.”
I carried the cup in my hand and hovered my other hand over the top of the cup as I made my way carefully and remotely to the Entrance Door. I stepped out to the merciless cold and treaded lightly through the fluffy light snow to the gate and felt the cold ice water from the snow that melted in my hair. I treaded onward forgetting my shivering nerves, my freezing veins, my body turning into a frozen piece of ice. In the snow nothing held me back; it was fluffy light snow, not heavy and hard and made a low-pitched crunching noise. When I reachedTaylorhe stared at me with those strong eyes of his. He said no words to me. I would understand why: of my behavior earlier. As I noticed I stood and he sat, I kneeled to my knees in the white snow and with my hands on the top and bottom of the cup I reached it out towards him.
He did not take it. He looked away from me off into a distance beyond the trees to the forest in front of our palace. His white hair matched of this lamb snow, his skin was the color of warmness; then again, he was cold, hard.
I set the cup of tea on the ground where I was afraid it may be cold before he could take it. “Please,” I said. “I would very much like to apologize for my behavior earlier. I should not have treated you the way I did.” He turned his head towards me and kept his face still. “I forgive you.” He said, his voice, so…so…so warm. It was gentle. It soothed every thing in me that pulsated. It was all he said. I did not want to argue with him because I no longer wanted to be rude than I was before and plus it would be over how he forgave me so easily.
I gently nudged the cup with my two fingers towards him and only watched how he kept his gaze on me. “Please accept this kind gesture, for what I have done in anyway to offend you.” I pleaded wanting him to forgive me. He just did not know how I felt. “I will accept, but I only wish for one thing.” He said. I looked gently and fast left to right confused, “And what would that one thing be?” “Tell me why you act the way you do? Your father says you are gentle.” He requests.
I looked beyondTaylor, I looked for an answer I could find somewhere in the forest beyond here. I replied, “I thought that when you came it was unfair and that my father thought I was the weakest in the family.” “There is no reason why a father—any father really—would give something to his daughter; does not matter whether first born or last or middle, a daughter to a father is like the purest treasure a king would die to have.”Taylor’s voice still gentle and it made me feel like I was floating.
“So you say I should not judge my father’s opinion and be thankful for he has hired you as a guardian, and that he loves me?” I asked letting my shoulders droop down my bones. It just didn’t make any sense. “So,” I asked. “How come my sisters’ did not receive a guardian? I am sure a father would love more than one daughter.”Taylorstared at me with an expression that seemed, confused, bewildered, happy, yet like he was looking at something he admired. It couldn’t’ve been me. I was not worthy ofTaylor. What was I saying to myself? Have I gone mad?
He put his head down with his eyes closed and answered, “That I do not know the answer to.” He opened his eyes again and shifted his head and gaze towards me. I was stilling my knees and I repositioned myself where I sat with my knees bent towards my chin. I crossed my arms around my knees with the light snow fall on me. I was cold, my eyes tired, my body was numb against the winter season. I couldn’t believe howTaylorcould sit here for so long. I felt my shiver uncontrollably, but I was only releasing little by little in me, I had to let it out of my body all at once. I took in a breath and opened my body very little and let it flow out of me; it came again. I felt my eyes water either I was crying or the water from my hair was in my eyes. My eyelashes felt heavy like lead, my brain felt like it had ice cycles dangling from it, my chest was cold and my heart was still beating but slowly. Of all times I have been outside of the palace I have never been this cold.
Then I closed my eyes then I felt my body fall into the snow. I had never felt a weakness like this before.
I was curled in a ball and was blazing hot, boiling to the bone. I jerked up in a sit and slapped my hand to my forehead in a rush. Beads of sweat were on my forehead, cheeks, neck and my legs were sticking together with the heat. I opened my eyes and saw I was in my room. I was fine, but my veins bubbled. I tried to get to my feet before I realized I felt a heavy presence on my shoulders and back. I was in a red large robe that was about seven inches taller than me but the extra robe fell past my feet; and a brown thick rope was tied around my waist. My long black hair was falling from its tight bun and I made my neck sweat more.
The robe was heavy and dragged and held me down. I fell to the bed weak and just tired from the heat. For once in my life I wanted to be outside and be shivering cold. I fell in defeat of the robe and I tried to reach my arms to untie the thick rope but the long sleeves were like glue to my arms and the sheets of the bed. I gave up. I closed my eyes soaking in the heat that pressured me, then taking in a cool breath I opened my eyes and out of the corner, standing by my window where I could perfectly see him.Taylor. I was breathing heavy and my chest was like an up-and-down hill.Taylorquickly and steadily made his way towards me.
Taylorput his hand on my head easing my breathing and my heart slowed. His strong gray eyes had me in his soul, he was determined, worried, hurt, and I felt a sort of hatred in him that burned inside. I laid in my bed, mesmerized, confused, and had an unknown feeling that made me think of a silver crescent moon underneath thousands of bushes of purple roses.
“If you may please remain calm and slow your breathing.”Taylorsaid his voice claming me like an Angel from Heaven; his voice that of a strong man and also of a free singer. I was eased and I breathed through my nose slowing my heart rate.Taylorkept his gray eyes on me as his hands glid down my shoulders to my arms and on my torso. He untied the knot from the thick rope and the robe fell off my sides. “Sit up please.” He ordered calmly. I obeyed. He slid the robe down off my shoulders, releasing my arms from the glue. I felt the weight ease off me as my sore arms and shoulders were in air once more. “Thank you.” I replied for taking the robe off. Then I wondered how I had gotten in my room, I was outside freezing.
Taylorsaw my expression and said, as though reading my wondering mind, “You were outside and you fell to the ground. You have been unconscious for about eight hours. It is seven in the evening. Your body was not use to the extreme cold while you wore that light dress.”
“Then you put your robe on me to keep my body from freezing and you brought me inside.” I finished for him. He grinned, “You are smart; at first I thought it was stupid of you to go out in the cold just to bring me tea.”
“I am not selfish, no person has a good reason to be selfish, I think of people I wish to help before myself.” I explained.Taylorgrinned with his head down from me. “You know sometimes it is best to think of your safety when you are the weakest in a battle. Every now and then you think of yourself and your safety.”
“But I wanted to help.” I proclaimed.
“Think of it this way, Sara,”Taylorsaid lifting his gaze to me. “This was a battle, me, you and the cold. I am stronger than you, and you know that, and the cold was stronger than you and you were weaker than the cold. You join me, you work under me, and in return I protect you, you are the weakest in the battle, I’m stronger than you and the cold is stronger than me, you are the weakest, when you are the weakest you think of only one thing: your safety and I’ll think of yours. Sure cold wins but you are alive and warm, but you lose. What is more important to you: Warm and alive or cold and dead?”
Taylorwas right and logic. He convinced me of another theory of battle strategy. “Warm and alive.” I answered.Taylorjust smiled.
“I have a question,” I said noticing how easilyTaylorcould slip on his robe. “How much does your robe weigh exactly?”Taylorlifted and let down his shoulders repeat-edly and judged. “Precisely forty-five pounds.” I lifted my eyebrows in shock. “No offense to you, but that is stupid you wear a robe that heavy.”Taylorchuckled at my reacti-on.
“You just like to see me in shock or—or I don’t know, what about me amuses you? I would like to know.” I demanded. “It’s the way you take things. You think there is a reason for every thing. Everything has a reason for happening. There are some things in the world that cannot be explained. Example: I am here. You do not now why and I cannot explain it to you.”
I cocked my head in bewilderment. “You cannot explain why you’re here? You can’t or…you won’t?”
“More like can’t.”
“Why? What are you hiding? What is there to hide from a person you protect?’ I asked.Taylor’s eyes faded to hatred,Taylordespised something in him, and his eyes were nothing but anger. “I keep secret from you my past. My past is more danger than what you are in for. If you should know what I am you will be dead much faster than you are on death road.”
“What if I want to know?” I asked. “If you want to know or if you figure out what I am, you will die.”Taylorreplied. I blinked; my eyes went down, my head spun, for my kind of wondering mind,Taylorhad me hooked on his secret. he made me interested, it was like he wanted for me to want to know his secret he’ll try to keep from me so I’ll be interested in what he doesn’t want me to want to know.
Taylorheld his thumb and finger under my chin and made my eyes fall into a gaze with his. “I swore to you, your mother, your father, the rest of your family, and on my soul I will not let you get hurt. That is where I find my problem. If I should even dare to hurt you I will leave.”
I was more bewildered than ever in my life. I wish Father were here with me, to explain everything confusing.
“Why would you even wish to hurt me? And because I do not know what the hell you are, what makes you think you can hurt me?” I asked my voice so scared and confused it cracked.
He had me hooked why does he want to intrigue me if he doesn’t want me. It seemed as though he wanted me but I could not hurt Jason, nor my country and Mother and Father. I had to resist him, he allured me, was it his eyes? They way he touched me? I didn’t know, but was it the way his eyes allured me into his soul, that was how I was able to see him. The way he touched me, the tips of his fingers gliding down my arms, the thin sleeves, so thin, I felt his skin glide against mine. His skin was warm, so was his gaze, but when he said words about himself the very way he spoke about, him being a danger to me, a hazard to my safety.
What could he possibly be talking about? He is my guardian for crying out loud!
Maybe he did have something in him, something that was deadly. I couldn’t see it clearly in his eyes but he may be right about some danger, but I could not see him as dangerous.
“Why are you doing this to me?” I asked. “Doing what?”Taylorasked bewildered as I was. “Why are you making me interested in you and why are you making me want to know your secret you keep intriguing me about?”
“I’m not making you do anything. You have a free will of your own, you feel what you want to feel.” He smiled then got to his feet and began towards my door. I turned my head to the wall my bed was against and jerked it toTayloras he reached for the knob. I jerked off the covers on me and basically ran toTaylorand slammed the door shut in front of him.
“Now, hold on there.” I said. “You think you can just smile after you say I feel any likeness for you and just leave?”
Taylorshrugged like he didn’t care what I thought. “You feel what you feel and yes I can.” I felt my mouth drop to the floor and my eyebrows furrow in shock. “What is wrong with you? What are you trying to do? Because I am confused scared at this point and I am—”Taylor’s lips were to mine in an instant. I felt a spark of a delight of like a pink and white…Boom...kind of thing. I fell deep into his grip of his hands tightening around my arms just below my shoulders almost cutting off my blood circulation.
Our lips melted into each others with everything around us turning black and in the space I felt…BoomsandBamsbetween us. I forgot everything, then with a kiss I have never felt before, then I just suddenly had a picture in my mind of a future kiss. Jason. Jason came into my mind. Suddenly I found myself pressing my palms with my stren-gth againstTaylor. I realized thatTaylorwasn’t even trying to resist my struggle, he was stronger, he didn’t even try to press me against the door, and to him it was probably easy as a child moving a stick. He probably thought of me as a weightless person who was easy to fall for him and he could easily have control under like a snake charmer. He was right.
I gave into him and I felt nothing on me but his body against me and my body pressed between a door and a being who kept me interested in secrets he kept and the danger he held. He seemed so gentle with me, not now with his lips still playing with mine but the way he touched me, the way he talked to me, the way he—I believe—he cares for me. As much as he could and would warn me he knew I would want more of him.
WithTaylor’s hands on my shoulders moving to my neck and then my head. The way he held me was unusual. It felt awkward to be held the way he held me. One of his hands was half on the side of my neck with his thumb on my beating pulse and the rest of his palm and his fingers behind me, pushing my neck spinal cord against my neck pushing me more againstTaylor. But it didn’t just feel awkward it felt sensational. It felt like I had a bomb in me and it exploded but it didn’t hurt me.
In the midst of Taylor’s embrace on me and what I have given back, Taylor parted his lips from mine and he saw my eyes that I’ve done something wrong and that he knew I had no idea how I felt about him. The air between us—which wasn’t really a lot, about three inches—had grown thick and it had become carbon dioxide instead of oxygen.
“I am sorry, I interrupted you. I could not control my sin of what I have put on you. I beg for your forgiveness.”Taylorpleaded. “I seriously do not know what to think. I don’t know what I think if I like you or if I hate you. I can’t weigh my options correctly, I liked it yet I committed a sin and basically a crime in Willolonia. I should be the one begging on my knees for forgiveness. I am sorry.” I said, no—more like pleading for forgiveness to Mother, Father, Jason, the All Mighty Good Lord.
“Taylor,” I said. “I am betrothed. I assumed you knew but obviously, you did not. I—I—I will not tell but you do not make any thought of me unless you are thinking protection. Because I kind of like you yet kind of despise you, I will be able to talk to you and spend time with you but if my mother or Jason gets suspicious I will have to stop—stop talking to you. I owe my country a duty to help them. I get nothing in return, I hope not to, but to only get one “Thank you.””
“You have your will; you do not need me by your side only to protect you. I am sorry for my action towards you.” He apologized again.
“Yeah, you really caught me on surprise there.” I commented.Taylorlet his head down but kept his gray gaze on me, “I probably should resume my position as a protector.” I didn’t say a word, I let Taylor out my room and I felt…lost…I don’t know what to feel, I do know how I should feel, confused, mad, full of anger, but I didn’t feel wrath, I felt something, but I don’t know what I felt. Something I hadn’t felt at any moment in my life. It was a completely different, whole new feeling. I felt normal but I had never felt this way before. I guess I was ever normal.Taylor…what had he done?
Midnight was covering the sky in black, and the cold-ness sheeted the ground with white snow, and the snow falling gently by my window kept me awake even though it was silent and it calmed the night to only a cat’s crawl. I lay in my bed staring at the ceiling with the only light of a crescent moon and the shining fluffy snow.
You know how some people say “The world will end in Ice” “The world will end in Fire”? Well I think it’s clearly to say that our world will end in Ice. I had never seen a fire that was not used for warmth. A fire for light, heating, and just for fun, has never been in my sight. I had never suggested our world ending in Fire, I may be wrong because not everything we see is how it seems. The eye sees what it wants to see. Illusions are easy to come by in life. Magicians are very good at illusions. I had seen a magician once; he was very charming and very funny, I remember he would guide your eyes away from what he was really doing. He showed us a sliver sphere in one hand and he opened it…gone, while his other hand was behind his back while others stared at his empty hand then he presents the sliver sphere in his other hand.
Taylorwas driving me away from him yet I can tell he wants to tell me his secret. He tells me I die, he doesn’t tell me…he stays with me…as a protector in the case.Taylorknows I’m smart, he said so himself and he keeps feeding me intensity and only puts out in his words how much if he tells me the secret.Taylornever said I could know the secret but he won’t tell me. I had to find out on my own to know his secret.
I yanked off the blankets over my body and silently made my way down the hall and to the stairs, and lightly jogged down to the Sitting Room and as my hand was as close as to gripping it I couldn’t touch the knob. I couldn’t go outside again. I sat on the bench that was nailed in the wall with an open window to my side, I sawTaylorsit where he sat, he seemed to keep his sense of not shivering, andTaylor’s expression was so sad; he looked in pain. His gray eyes were weaker, his body seemed to be numb, no wonder he could stand the cold. He didn’t feel the cold, he felt pain. I couldn’t do anything but watch as I felt a throbbing pain that was like a child playing with a light switch, “off” was no pain, “on” was the pain of a short shock in my muscles. And for a strange reason I began to cry, silently and down my cheek. I didn’t know why.
Suddenly I thought of my father again. The last time I saw my father.
* * *
“Father if I may ask, why do you go so far away when you wish for nothing to harm us?” I asked. Father put down his book he was reading, and replied, “Sometimes when you love something but you don’t want to let them go, that is counted as selfish dear daughter. Now if you love something and youhaveto let them go for them to be happy and safe then that is counted as caring for others and loving others.”
“But Father, if you want us to be happy why would you give up your life for us? Being out in battle is too dangerous for you.” I asked scared of losing Father again. Father smiled and patted his knee and said, “Come, let me explain something to you Sara.” I got from the seat to the chair where Father sat and sat on his knee.
“Now Sara,” Father explained. “I love you, your mother and sisters; I would do anything for my wonderful daughters and your mother, and because I love you four so much I would be a mindless idiot to think it was not good enough for me; so Sara when someone you love takes you for granted then goodbye to them because there won’t be a damn fool in this world who thinks you are different from being your beautiful, wonderful, and strong self. Because I love my family I would give my life to protect them from any harm. I’ll be the lion and you and your sisters will be the cubs, and if anyone dares hurts any of my cubs then off with their heads.”
Father said “…off with their heads.” Because I was reading Alice in Wonderland a novel that kept my child ima-gination alive in me and with imagine with me I had the whole world in my hand. That was another thing my father wanted to have with me while I was not by his side: imagination.
I smiled at my father, “Thank you for the lesson Father, I appreciate every word.” Then I kissed his cheek where his mustache tickled my lip. I got from his lap and sat in the chair that was large enough to hold three of me in perfect placement and I resumed reading Alice in Wonderland.
* * *
I was fifteen when I last saw my father. The last time I sat in his lap. Father always did say I would always keep my child in me. He thought every man and woman had their child in them even in adulthood.
As I stared I only wished I would go out and bring him inside. Why would he be outside if he knew he could freeze to death? He was strange, the way he talked, the way he moved with me. It was awkward how he moved his fingers on me, how his body language makes me wonder. I don’t know what about he kept me thinking about him. When I was with him I thought of nothing but a whole new world we lived in; that was how I really felt: nothing but him and I in a whole new world by ourselves. Every time I was with him or I thought of him I thought of my father and I. Was it because my father protect my family and Taylor is my guardian? I don’t know why but I felt like I knew Taylor and that he understands me, how awkward I feel in the world, how I know how to fight, learn quick, but he knew I felt different, how? I knew he felt different in the world as well. He knew what it is like to feel so out of the way of the world and only wish for it to be yours. That was our connection, the same connection I and Father had.
I felt my eyes swell up and explode in tears and down my cheeks. I did not dry them because tears are memories, if we wipe them away we don’t know who we are. These tears I shed are part of me and my father and what we’ve shared within my tears I held my father and I do not even wish to wipe my father away from me. With my eyes shedding so many tears, it made my eyelids lead and I fell into a deep, peaceful, black sleep with what was suppose to be a blink.
Something was wrong. I knew I had not slept long because it was still snowing, even in my blurred vision I knew it was still dark out. But there was something odd in the air. Maybe it was where my hand had fallen. I traced my arm to find it in a bloody mess. Without a single scream I jerked away my hand and curled myself in a ball out of shock and a fear that ran through my veins.
There was a dead man, below my feet, he had appeared to be stabbed in the chest and my hand fell into the wound. It was bloody and was staining fast from no healing, he was dead. He was dressed in black like—like I dare think...an assassin. I swallowed hard and looked both ways like crossing the streets only this was in my living room. I cautioned my steps and I felt my heart th-th-thumping against my ribcage as I came more towards the stairs. I licked my lips to keep them from drying in my scared senseless crap.
I hugged my wrist with the bloody hand with my palm and squeezed it to my chest. I kept looking side to side still frightened like a little girl with a monster living with her in her dreams. I turned my back to the stairs and cautioned my step backwards as I was sweating from the hot fear wrap-ping around my veins and my heavy but silent breathing not helping the slightest to calm me. Suddenly I was gripped by two arms, one around my mouth and around my waist. I was pulled underneath the staircase where I was forced down into a crouching position where I was breaking everything in my throat from trying to scream but the fabric was too thick over my mouth for me to even make a faintest whisper. I closed my eyes afraid of what is to be next for me. Then I heard a voice, “Sara? Oh, Sara.” Then I was being hugged, tightly in a grip that felt so familiar, could it be? “Taylor? I asked. He let me face him where I could breathe again and I recognize that sun-kissed skin anywhere with that white hair.
“Sara I thought you were sleeping.”Taylorsaid. “I was but then I kind of woke up from my hand being covered in dead-man-by-my-side blood.” I explained.Taylornodded, “Yeah, about that I killed him—” “Hey, I know you did but I need to know why and give me a good reason, not just because you’re my guardian.” I demanded. “He tried to poison you, are we on the same page now?” he explained quite quickly. “Wait there’s a page? I didn’t even know there was a book in our Sitting Room worth of value.” I said.
“Clearly I know why he would poison you.”Taylorsaid looking away. “I don’t get what you mean.” I said confused. “Of course you don’t that’s why I said It.” he said in a rush. “Now Sara I need you to please, please be quite. This could be a mess with more than one assassin.”
“Of course it’s more than one assassin, why do you think I got from my seat so cautionly?” I asked sarcastic. “I didn’t see you get up; hence the comment of me thinking you was asleep.” He said with a rush and sarcasms in his voice. “Ok, this conversation is over.” I said getting to my feet and about to walk from the stairs but when I was just and inch from the stairs and into open view I was pulled back withTaylorand his grip again making my arm go numb. “You will sit here and remain here until I come and get you. Are we clear?” he asked with determination and instinct in his eyes and voice.
Without my reply he disappeared and I was alone—well not completely, I believe I know why some people are afraid when they’re alone: you’re not. Did I mention that I don’t listen very well to instructions? I leaned against the underside staircase as I got to my feet in a wobbly stance. I felt my chest puff in and out from fear of what be behind the corner.
I crossed the street and I felt like I was hit by a freight train. I felt like I was airborne only I was flying backwards and against the wall I felt my spine crack and felt hard on my skin and pressing it to the wall. It wasn’t too dark to see but to my left was a dagger. I grabbed hold of it and stuck it in the assassin’s back in-between the shoulder blades. He let me fall to regain my stance I stood in shock in the shades of darkness and the moon light that shined from the large window. The assassin fell to the floor, dead. I jerked my head to the stairs, basically stumbling on the stairs running, skipping about three steps with each leap.
Reaching the top of the second floor I took hold of a bow and arrow slipping the pack around my shoulder for more arrows. I readied myself for anything that could happen. Jerking and turning back and forth down the hall of my sisters. No one was going to hurt them. Not now, not ever. As long as I am still breathing here in this palace they don’t get harmed. Sweat coated me, it was smothering me to where I was hearing things move and seeing things with my playing eyes. I dropped my paranoid aim and wiped off the heating beads of seat from my forehead and let out a breath I held from the staircase.
Nothing was being heard. That was what scared me. No smashing, no cluttering. It was silent, no sound of Taylor. I carefully side stepped my way down the stairs and aimed again but nothing to hit, no one underneath the case. I let my arrow drop again and I was unable to scream. My mouth was covered by a hand and I was turned around pinned to the assassin and he held a knife to my throat. My bag of arrows fell as so did my bow and I felt weak. The assassin blocked my breathing nose too. I couldn’t breathe in any air; he was cutting me off from the oxygen. I felt like I was drowning in the sea. I suddenly gave up fighting and resisting him.
Then a figure came into my sighting. “Let the girl go.” It commanded. The assassin was silent. The figure came forward more into the moon light.Taylor. Half his face was silhouetted and the other half I could barely make out, he looked wild. He looked like an animal. His eyes, glowing red, not a dull red but the whole eyes were red, illuminating. He bared a sharp set of teeth like fangs of a mythical vampire. I was just scared from observing him. “Give me the girl and you just might get away alive.” He said his voice different; it was more like a growl. I swallowed hard afraid of what might happen.
I closed my eyes and I felt my body was free of any grip. In an instant I felt like nothing happened except I was free from a hold. I jerked my head back to see what happened.Taylorhad the assassin pinned to the wall. He was snarling and growling like an animal, it scared me so much. I ran for the bow and arrow and I released the arrow. Then it fell silent in the atmosphere again. Even my breathing wasn’t a sound problem anymore.
Taylorrelaxed his shoulders as he turned his head with heavy breathing from his mouth. He looked tired, he looked too exhausted to even move but incredibly he kept walking towards me. I ran to him and supported his arm on me. He seemed normal but I was now frightened of him. I set him on the long coach and kneeled by his being as he was about to fall into a slumber. He looked to me in pain and said, “Sara I am so sorry you saw me like that.”
“Don’t worry I barely saw a thing.” I lied. I don’t know what I saw, it wasn’t even two seconds but I remember his eyes, voice, his snarl. “Taylorhush and shush or the Beldam may here.”
“What the hell does that mean?” he asked in a struggle. “It means if you don’t shut the hell up I’ll tape it closed, so now rest and go into a slumber.” I explained. “So hush and shush for the Beldam will surely hear.”
* * *
“Father will the Beldam really come after me in a locked door?” I ask. “No, absolutely not. I won’t allow it to happen. No person takes my child, I don’t care if it’s your other mother or not but no one is taking my Sara from me.” Father answered.
I am scared. I didn’t want the other mother taking me and eat up my life like those other children Coraline saved. At this point of time I’m eight reading Coraline. I never thought a book could be a thriller like this.
“If it’s too scary for you, Sara, you know you can put it down and read something more…joyful.” Father reminded me. “But I don’t wish to stop. I know you are scared when you are protecting me and Mother, so why can’t I be scared for a girl who had her parents stolen from her by the other mother? I don’t really see a difference in being scared. And if I am heir to Willolonia’s Armed Forces then I must not be afraid no matter how big the situation. Like you Father.”
Father smiled brightly at me. “You know, when you grow up Sara, you will be the most beautiful, and the strongest in heart and mind girl anyone will be blessed to meet. And let me tell you another thing. You don’t have to prove anything to me. You have already made me proud in you since the very day you came in this world.”
* * *
I saw myself sleeping on the couch instead of findingTaylorresting. I fluttered open my eyes and foundTaylorwatching over me by sitting beside my tired body. “You were dreaming.” He commented. “You—you—I can’t even explain, I can’t put words into you.”
“No one usually can by how strange I am.” I responded. “No I mean how grateful I am to be protecting you.” He said. I wondered like usually did when I spoke to a person. “You shouldn’t be grateful because I just brought you tea and laid you on a couch. You have done more for me than I could even count.” I doubted.
“Sara, you don’t realize the one most important thing that I am grateful for.”Taylorsaid rubbing my hair down my head.
“And what is that?” I asked.
“You’ve let me plant a kiss on you. Sure it was wrong but what you’ve given is more than a—a—a drug to strengthen a warrior. You are more than that to me.”Taylorsaid.
“So to you I am like a drug?” I cocked an eyebrow.
“You pay too much attention to the details.”Taylorsaid. “Sara the point is you give me two things in my life. You’ve given me strength.”
He stopped. “That is one thing, and the second?” I asked. “I can’t tell you.” He replied. “Stop doing that.” I demanded. “What am I doing that gets under your skin?” he asked. “You keep me under your spell, it’s like you sounds like you want to let me go but you keep me wanting more of you. Why?”
He gazed into my eyes then shut his tight in a squint in rage and anger then replied, “I can’t.” I laid down my head and stared to the ceiling. “You can’t or you won’t?” I ask again. “Half and half.” He replied. I shut my eyes not wanting to cry. Last time I had gotten a reply like that…it came from my father.
I asked Father if he really wanted to go to war while Mother was still holding Jessie and Jessica. He answered, “Half and Half. I need to be at war so you can be safe along with Mother and the girls. And I want to be here with you and Mother. Half and Half.”
Even with closed tight eyes I felt tears run down my cheeks. I didn’t know howTaylorwould make me even feel. ‘What value is he to me? What value am I to him?’ those words I said to mother yesterday morning; now broke my heart. I felt my breath stammer silently through my throat. My salty tears felt hot like a wet fire down your cheeks. It was weird how a simple thing can change in a day.
Lightly gliding across my wet cheek was the back of his hand. I opened my eyes and I fell into his gray gaze. “There’s something else inside you about me that bothers you. Tell me.” He said his voice so gentle and I felt like I had to confess.
“You remind me so much of my father.” I said.Taylorclosed his eyes for a moment then re-opened them and said, “Continue.”
“Ever since you came here I thought more of my father than when he left. Everything you do while you are with me I have a thought of my father. It’s like you brought him here with you.” I admitted.
Taylorshook his head like he was shaking something from his thoughts. “Here,” he said. “Let me get you to your bedroom and I can resume my position.” He glid his hands to his arms under my legs and upper back where he carried me to the stairs and up, to where I felt secure in his arms; feeling the security being surrounded my—no, just Taylor we wasn’t mine. He was not mine to being able to kiss me without it being illegal. AsTaylorwas about to step up the last step I asked him, “How do you feel when you are with me?”
“What do you mean? I am only to protect you; I am supposed to feel nothing for you only that you will live.” He answered. “That’s not the reply I wanted.” I said. “I mean what do you feel? Not what you’re supposed to feel. You certainly feel something for when you kissed me.”
“I can’t admit. As much as I want to I can’t. Full all the way.” He said. I played with my fingers as we kept carrying me to my room then from the warmth sent fromTaylormy fingers found his red robe and played with it. I didn’t really notice anything until I was in my room. I realized I was smiling for no reason. Well maybe not for ‘no reason’ but for some reason I didn’t know could exist in my life I was smiling.
Maybe I was going mad. I do not know. I didn’t know there was a reason I didn’t know existed in me that replaced that ‘no reason’ that made me smile for…some-I-did-not-know-was-in-me reason. Father did say that I would be mad someday but he said that the people in the world that are mad are the best people in the world. I thought he was mad.
I just fell deep intoTaylor’s secure hold.
“What do you feel about me?”Taylorasked. “I can’t tell as much as I want to but I can’t. Full all the way.” I replied with a sigh. “Sounds to me that you keep your feelings inside you a lot often than I would expect; please tell me why.”
I hesitated. I raised an eyebrow in the way he placed his words. “You want to know why I keep my feelings inside me and confess them in a confessing-feeling way. You must be mad.” In a way it was a confession to me. “You think you are mad as well as your father. Why?” he caught. “Because,” I answered. “The best people in the world are mad.” I gazed into his gray eyes as he was paralyzed by my blue gaze on him. Then I realized that he still held me close to his chest and even though he was in that heavy robe I could feel his heart beating. From where my fingers played I moved my hand to his heart and feel the steady beat of life in him.
In him I felt a life that was steady, goods, bads, and in-betweens. He set me on my bed where I was in a sitting position where my hand could never leave his beating heart.Taylorsat beside me and he pressed his hand over mine that felt his heart. He did the same. I saw that pain in him that disturbed me to see him in. how could he have a pain and he not tell me and I could help. I wanted to help him. As he felt me heart he said, “Just making sure you’re real.” In his eyes he seemed sad. The pain he felt inside him made his eyes intriguing to sad and depressed where it seemed not only he could cry but I would to.
I didn’t know what to think. How could I think when my mind was spinning and my head racing? I couldn’t describe this incredible feeling being so close to him and in a feel that I did not have with anyone else…not even my father and I had this. I was somewhere in the world right now and I felt nothing, I heard nothing, saw nothing, and touched nothing at all but one thing…Taylor. He was with me somewhere in a world that was too unbelievable to even exist in somewhere in my heart I did not know I had. This was something I have never felt. I felt like I was floating, flying, soaring through the night air and it was warm. The new horizons that I never knew, I could never know anything like this unless I was withTaylor. Each unexplored wonder by wonder I felt like standing on the sea and swimming through the desert, climbing the floor and crawling the mountains. I kept this inside me and it was busting to come out of its hiding place.
I wish I could but if I did I would’ve commented adultery when I don’t really…I can’t say it. I was with Jason and that was it: nothing more important now than my country now. Nothing more…and I was made of sand and while I thought more of protection and my father andTaylorand Jason and everything else I needed in my life weren’t by my side I would drift away in the wind and never be remembered.
“Sara,”Taylorsaid breaking my trance. “You have to understand the dangers that you will bring on yourself if you are not careful and don’t listen to me. You nearly died earlier because you were being cut off from the world’s oxygen. I could be much worse if I get too attached to you. I am preventing something you should never be in. please listen because I know how stubborn you can be. Please, I am begging you, stay away from me when I am protecting you at violence.”
“Yes. I will.” I said. “I will let you sleep now.”Taylorsaid getting to his feet and my hand glid away from his heart. “You need your rest.”
“Wait,Taylor,” I pleaded. “If you could would you tell me why you are here and what you are?”Taylorclosed his eyes and as if he struggled to talk he replied, “No. I would not. I would not even think about telling you. You wouldn’t understand and you would be in more danger than what you are in already. Goodnight to you Sara.”
“Taylorto let you know, before you go back out there,” I said my voice so timid I could barely feel the words come from my throat. “Because of you I would like you to know that I am afraid.”Taylorwas already at the door when I spoke and he replied without looking back at me, “Good.” And from his word I let tears roll down my cheeks while asTaylorleft as he turned on the side of his face from the cascade of his white hair I saw on his cheek a tear. My door closed and I felt nothing at all now. I went numb.
He wanted me to be scared. Why? I felt so numb I couldn’t hold my balance on my bed. I fell onto the floor in a fetal position. My vision blurred, my throat burned, my head pounded, my heart skipped beats, everything went aching in me. I felt my hair fall from its messy bun it was already in. and I felt it over my face and neck, like a drape covering a thunderstorm from a child’s room. I tried to rise to my feet but it was useless I could get to my feet. I was weak. I was weaker than the snow. I was weaker than the cold. I closed my eyes and fell into what seemed a thousand years of slumber.
“Sara!” I shot up. I was in a field. Was I dreaming? I couldn’t be. It was so realistic. The field was green grass but where I stand it was ash and burned ground. It was day, and the field was surrounded by wood and I was alone with nothing around me. I found myself wondering my way into the wood and ducking every branch and moving every twig that grew on a tree out of my way as I wondered mindlessly into the unknown wood. Then I must’ve known where I was going because I didn’t hesitate to go back or go anywhere else. Out of no where a strange girl, maybe my age comes from behind a tall bush and had an expression that said she was looking for something, something important. When she turns my way I am shocked to see her. It was no one I ever met before but she was different from a lot of girls I do see often. She looked excited, happy, eccentric, she seemed as though relieved to have spotted me.
“Sara!” her voice calming and glad. I didn’t know who she was. As she came towards me with open arms I opened mine and prepared for a hug. When her arms were around me in a python grip she kept swinging me back and forth and side to side. “Sara! Sara! Sara!” I felt my arms go limb and then everything began to blur again. It went black then the black faded to a white light.
“Sara! Sara! Sara!” it was man’s voice now and from my woozy vision I could see black hair and a white sun from my left. Snow. Only snow could be that white. I shook my head and saw Jason with his arms around me and shaking me awake. “Sara! Sara is you alright?” his voice worried.
“Yes I am fine Jason.” I responded. “Oh, Sara you had me so worried. What were you doing on the floor?” Jason asked. I was confused. “What do you mean?” I asked. “You were on the floor Sara, I found you and I thought you were dead. You scared me half to death.” I thought.
“How was I positioned when you found me?” I asked. “What does that matter what were you doing on the floor in the first place?” Jason demanded.
“Answer my question and I’ll answer your’s.” I compromised. “You were on the floor like this:” and Jason placed my gently on the floor on my back with my arms outspread and bent with my hands towards my head.
“Now Sara I need my answer.” He demanded. That wasn’t how I was positioned last night. “I must’ve fell when I was in bed.” I lied. Jason looked to the bed then to me. “How in the hell could you get all the way off the bed five feet from it and you not wake up?” he asked. “I must’ve rolled.” I suggested. I seriously didn’t know what happened last night but meeting that strange girl. Blonde hair, large blue eyes and my age and very full of spirit and soul.
“Sara you are starting to scare me. You are probably right, but I care for you. Mother wants us down stairs now and she wants to discuss details with you.” Jason said breaking my concentration. That girl, who was she? How did I felt like I know her and how she knew me?
I had gotten dressed as Jason left me in my room. I dressed in a sky blue dress with a black lining creating the pattern of small daisies. I wrapped around my arms in a black thin scarf that was held by my inside elbows. I slipped on a black ribbon that fit on my arm below my shoulder. I braided my hair that reached my waist over my shoulder and over my heart. On my neck I had my engagement necklace on, a gold layered out chain that grew to my collar bone and just below my collar bone hung a diamond heart. I shaded one more tear escape my burning eyes.
I looked up to the mirror to see my reflection.
* * *
I tied the pink ribbon around my neck and observed in the mirror. What really was the point in a mirror? Looking at your self and checking to see if you are correct with everything about your appearance seems selfish. I wonder if Father knows why? I exited my room and went to the hall mirror at the end of Jessie and Jessica’s future hall, since they hadn’t been born yet. I felt my throat clench as I paced from green wall to green wall wondering.
When Father came out of his room and noticed me pacing he picked me up by my under-shoulders and carried me towards the mirror and placed me with my back to my reflection.
“Sara, dear, what are you doing?” Father asked kneeling down to me sight. I stared him in the eyes and spoke, “I don’t know the purpose of mirrors. What are they for? And I know making sure that my hair is not tangled or anything is not a purpose.”
Father answered with such confidence, “The mirror is used for reflecting your soul. So when you look in the mirror what do you see in your soul?”
“A whore?” I asked. Father cocked his head and raised his eyebrow. “What the hell do you mean?” he asked his voice cracked. “Mom said that Princess Julia is a whore and has no trouble with her bed being filled.” I replied. Father chuckled and looked to the floor then raised his head to me again. “I need to talk to your mother but you are not a…whatever you said—”
“A whore.” I corrected.
Father looked at me with an I’m-not-playing-don’t-say-that-and-you-knew-what-I-meant look. “You are a candle in the cold darkness in the world. The world will be black someday and you will illuminate and light everyone’s way to hope. Despite you slight child-humor you will be a fine woman I know you will be when you grow up. Sure you will have the men chasing after you but you belong to only one person. Well make those two persons.”
“Why do you say ‘two persons’?” I asked.
“Because you belong to me darling Sara…” he paused. “You will be long to me forever. Then you will be with someone and they will love you all eternity as I will and then when you’re older…much, much older…you will grow the feeling of expressing yourself to him and you will feel comfortable enough with him you will—” “Father!” I interrupted before he could go on. “I am ten years old. I don’t need this conversation right at the moment.”
“All right but I’m just saying—”
“Father, I’m still a virgin.” I quickly said. Father smiled and patted my shoulder. “You are a funny girl. You know that Sara? You are so priceless; I would give away anything for you to be safe and by my side.”
* * *
“Now Jessica you need to get away of the habit of licking people’s heads.” I over heard Mother and Jason trying to convince Jessica out of her bad habit of licking the servant’s heads. Now this girl is a funny girl.
I came from the winding staircase and steadily walked to the long couch that Mother and Jason sat on while small, tiny Jessica stood with her arms behind her back. I came around and sat beside Jason. “Now I don’t know what is with you and the licking. I’m not sure if it’s because they taste good or something but some people like having people I suppose like licking their heads but some people need their personal space and that means they don’t like their heads being licked by seven year olds. Do you understand me Jessica?” Mother finished. I tried my complete hardest to not show the slightest clue I thought this was humorous.
“Yes Mother I understand.” Jessica said. “Very well, please leave so your sister and I could discuss wedding. Jason could you please escort Jessica to her room?” Jason nodded his head and got from his seat and held out his hand for Jessica. I turned my head back towards Mother.
“I wonder about you children in this palace.” Mother commented. “I worry about us too.” I said.
“Sara,” Mother said. “How do you wish to live your life?” I spoke, “I wish to speak my words from my lips and want the sun to illuminate the sparkling rain falling on skin with happy smiles on my peoples’ faces. I wish to have my life with arms wide open for people to come in.” I explained.
“You confuse me Sara.”
“I confuse a lot of people Mother.”
“You are supposed to be happy with your life. Your father has given so much for you…for us...I don’t want you taking this for granted.” Mother said. “But I am not. I appreciate everything in this family; I am blessed to have you all being in my life. I only wish to be more out going. I already am, why not take it my way?”
“You have rules. We all have rules to follow. Without rules there would be—”
“Chaos, misfortune, everything but order; I’ve heard this from Father I am very familiar with what he says to me.” I finished.
“Sara that is what worries me.” Mother said. I jerked my head towards her and my eyes widened. “What do you mean Mother?” I asked. “All your life you have been with your father. You’ve learned nothing but how to fight, and use your mind a lot of time. Every time there is a thing the reminds you of Father you go into a trance of memory. You are nothing but your father. You need some of yourself in you.” Mother explained.
“What is so wrong with feeling love for my father? I see nothing wrong and he gives me a reason to be me. He doesn’t drive me away from anything he pushes me further into myself. I am who I am. Mother I want you to accept that I am different from the family and I wish to be myself in my family. I only wish for to accept my DNA. It’s set in me, the kindness of my father and he is in me. Accept me and my father in me in my DNA.” I said my voice strained, on the verge of cracking.
“Sara let’s put this behind us and let’s just plan this.” Mother said. She gave up because she knew how stubborn I was with arguing. Even though I might be wrong I kept going to trying to win of what I knew was right to me.
“What’ve I want to be with someone I never have met before?” I asked. “What do you mean Sara?” asked Mother. “I mean that it is unfair I have no control over my life. I want to do something before I could be that wonderful woman Father knew I would be. Just something that had had an impact on my life that I would remember forever. I have not done anything like that. I wish I could. I don’t feel ready to settle down.”
“What do you wish Sara?” Mother asked her voice stern. “I wish to postpone the wedding until I feel ready to marry Jason.” I wished.
Mother looked out to the window and beyond that, beyond the gate, beyondTaylor, beyond the wood, beyond what laid beyond the wood and beyond that and then at the end she saw her thinking room. “Sara I feel you don’t know that you and I don’t have much time left to run the country’s armed forces.”
“Mother you are still young. You are not old until you live to be exactly one-hundred and thirteen years old. And that is the age you will be deceased. You are young Mother. I need the time in my life to wait.” I convinced her.
“Fine Sara Cecile Patrick; you have your wish granted.”
My goal now is to keep myself from falling. From the grace in the world that drifted over me like wind I was at peace and I had nothing else to loose. I was still trapped, but I am closer than I was before.
What I find hard to believe is how I can’t admit to myself what I feel. What I bled was something more than any emotion I felt before in any time in my life. I didn’t bleed memories, those were tears. I didn’t bleed blood that shows victory. I didn’t bleed anything like this before.
“Sure the future is frightening but people like your writing you show. Everyone is a natural in their world.” I say to myself. I smiled at having a conversation with myself.
“I’ll admit, I do likeTaylor—no I have strong feelings for him—I’m hiding again. Why do I do this to myself? It’s weird. I’m weird. I want to go all the way in my life. Not only would I fight in life I want to win.”
Father did say sometimes loosing can be a greater victory than winning. I didn’t know what he had meant but it was what kept him alive in me, he made me wonder with him in my being.
“Maybe loosing to the cold was a good thing for me. If I hadTaylorwith me, I would loose every time to the cold.”
That is it.Taylor. He kept me going. He was…he is…in my life…no he is my life. I couldn’t be without him but Mother would get to suspicious if I would be byTaylorevery second of the day. Night was my key toTaylor. I would listen to my heart this time more than ever. I wouldn’t follow my instincts unless it called for it. I was too caught in thought to not notice anything around me.
When everything was wrong just hours ago I moved along and my pain was gone.
Anyway with me being so distant from the real world and caught in my thought I closed my eyes and sat up in my bed. I smiled brightly.Taylor. I re-opened my eyes and looked to my left where I would sit andTaylorwould be under thy tree.
“Taylorwhat are you doing here?” I asked getting to my feet and walked over to him. “Sara you must think I am mad but I—I can’t get away from Heaven’s Light. You Sara, I can’t get you out of my head.” I smiled, I accepted him with my wide open arms I said to Mother. “I accept you.” I nearly screamed. I huggedTaylortightly as I could. “I know you said that the best people in the world are mad but I never thought you would really accept me.”Taylorsaid lightly putting his arms around me. I felt his chin and cheek on my head as I sunk in his grip.
“I’m not blindTaylorbut I wish to see you everynight, outside under that tree, just you and me, only us. No one else.” I said. “Please tell me you promise.” I pleaded. “I promise.” I felt his hand on the back of my head pulling me closer into him.
Later in the midst of the beginning of the black night…
I dressed myself and prepared for what everyone thought was sleep but I would sleep for an hour then go outside and be withTaylor. He kept me alive. I stepped each step carefully down the stairs and reaching for the doorknob of the Entrance Door I opened it and closed it as I loved being outside.Taylorgave me a reason to be outside the gates of this palace. I had never been out the gates before. He gave me things I couldn’t explain because I could only feel them and I can’t explain this feeling for him. He waits under the tree for me.
Though the night was cold I knew I hadTaylorto keep me warm. I ran to him and fell on my knees to him, sliding in the light fluffy snow and I slid intoTaylor’s arms. “You should be careful who know where you’ll slide next.” I smiled and hugged my arms with my palms.Tayloruntied the thick brown rope that was around his waist and he opened his red heavy robe. As he was taking it off his shoulders so easily than I could ever have, I stopped him by putting my hand on his that was pulling it off his shoulder. “Keep it open.” I said. I lifted the robe and made myself under it, underTaylor’s arm and I lightly hugged his chest and my head fell on his chest as his hand rubbed up and down on my back making me go into my world.
There comes a day that I will make myself realize what I should be feeling but I can’t. I won’t loose this opportunity. Every day I will tellTaylorhow special and important he is to me… because he is. It was easier to breathe; I never thought I could feel warmth like this. I knew there was something missing in me…it was something in my heart that had never been there before. There was no where else to run but to him. I surrender my heart, my body, my soul to him. I gave into him; I had no choice if I wanted my arms open.
“Sara?”Taylorasked pulling me from thought. “Yes?” I replied. “Tell me something.” He said. “Anything.” I said my eyes still closed and my head resting on his chest. “Have you ever loved somebody before…and they hurt you. Like stabbing you in the back and leaving you in the dark?” he asked I sat up and saw his eyes. Pain. Nothing but that pain that was killing me too. “Why do you ask?” I asked curious. “I just need to know.” He replied. I thought of my past… what has happened in my past of someone I loved who had hurt me? “No person comes to my mind.” I say. “Are you sure?” askedTaylor. “I am sure I have never been hurt before by a loved one…or by anyone. Besides those assassins that came last night. But other than that I am perfectly safe.” I say.
“Sara, I need your promise on something.”Taylorsaid. “What is it?” I asked. “If I were to kill you and the last thing you would see is me, would you be disappointed in me?”
“TaylorI hate to say this but…you’re scaring me. Why are you saying these words?” I asked. “I just want to know.” He responded. “If I were to be killed by you, I would it be you in a thousand life times. I don’t care if it is indented or not, but as long as you say these last words: ‘I love you’.” I answered. “I don’t want to hear you ever talk about you hurting me. I couldn’t really be hurt.”
Under the warmth and security ofTaylormy eyes felt like lead and I couldn’t keep my eyes open any longer. Falling in deep under his spell I had that indescribable feeling I had in my chest. Today I felt like it was a fairytale. I was released from being married on a date I was not ready for and I was with my prince. Before I did go into the black slumber I knew I had a smile on my lips as I held on tight.
“Goodnight Sara.” I heard him say as I felt his hand on my shoulders.
“I missed you so much Sara. You wouldn’t believe how hard we fell since we thought you were gone.” That girl again. She was hugging my shoulders with her palms and she was tearing in her eyes. She had blonde luscious hair and dazzling blue eyes. She hugged me tightly in her arms and it felt secure being with her and yet not knowing her made it a little less awkward than what it should’ve been. I blinked confusingly then slowly let my arms lightly hug her. I put my head to her shoulder and I felt like we were connected by a strong string that twins felt. Now I know how my sisters feel when they are not together.
This girl who hugged me…who said she missed me…she felt like one of my sisters and I felt like I could admit anything, with Jessie and Jessica I couldn’t admit everything. But with this girl who hugged me…she showed she cared for me. I never wanted her to leave me and I knew she wasn’t.
“Sara?” I heard a faint child-voice I fluttered my eyes open to in my vision I saw Jessie near my face. “Jessie? What are you doing outside?” I asked her. Her face confused and wondering. “Sara, we’re not outside. I’m in your room. I wanted to ask you whereTaylorwas.” Jessie asked twisting her fingers together. I looked to my side and no one was there and I was in my bed under my gold-colored covers. “Jessie I do not know whereTayloris. Why? Is he not under our Family Tree?” I asked propping myself with my elbows.
“No he’s gone. I was hoping you knew because he is protecting you.” Jessie replied. Now she got me wondering. “I do not his ware-abouts. I never really do.” I admitted. I don’t know what he really does when I close my eyes or when I do not have him in my sights. “Shouldn’t you be worried?Tayloris supposed to be protecting you and he’s not here. I would be worried if my guardian was not here by my side to protect me.” Admitted Jessie in her sweet innocent voice.
“I’ll be fine and I’m sureTaylorwill come back in an hour or two. Now Jessie have you done your singing lessons?” I asked.
“No, not yet; why do you ask Sister Sara.”
“Then how about we do that now and I can see you sing. I haven’t seen you perform in a few months.” I encouraged. “Alright Sara, but can you sing with me? I like performing with you.” She asked. I smiled, “Well of course Sister Jessie.”
We entered the Ball Room where Jessie would practice her singing. Every morning and sometimes the evening there would always be men here in neat black suits with instruments by their sides. There was one with a guitar and one with the piano. Jessie’s instructor, Madam Casella, an old, tight-skinned woman with gray-bluish hair and green eyes that I kid with Jessie that if you stared them too long you would catch fire, stood by the piano with her hands cupping one another and she had an impatient look to her expression. She didn’t stare into her eyes more than five seconds. “Good morning Lady Jessie and Madam Skelei-ngton.” Madam Casella greeted. I didn’t want to discuss the names, because it was morning, I just woke and I just didn’t want to speak at the moment.
“Good morning to you as well Madam Casella.” Jessie and I greeted. “All right we left off with Jessie reaching low notes and Jessie if you would demonstrate.” Madam Casella ordered. Jessie nodded her head and she sung ‘La’ for a low note in a manner that could only be Jessie. She was a singing natural, only she could have the fairest voice in any land.
“Good, very well Jessie. Now we’ll pick up on the song we left off. Madam Skeleington I understand you are singing with Lady Jessie, please if you would come around to the piano and read the lyrics and sing along with Jessie.” Madam Casella demanded in a clam way. I nodded my head and made my way to the piano and observed the lyric sheets.
Madam Casella snapped her boney fingers and said, “Ready…begin.” Jessie and I began at once and it was like our voice melting into each others’.
“Find the words you’ve left unspoken
Forgive the apologies you left unclosed
Begin this new day
Away on the ship that will sail and start your blank page
Searching for the words you need to speak
Denying your grief and keep your tries on your age
Don’t lock away and feel the only thing you can feel
Live your life on life’s mountain peak
Release your emotions from your locked door
Relieve yourself with words unspoken
Prepare for arms wide open
Staring at the yellow sun’s illuminations
Don’t fall for hallucinations
Always make mistakes
Learn from what it takes
Go for the distance
And take you own stance
For this will be your life’s life”
As the piano began to slow and Jessie and I faded our voices with the word ‘life’ I kept it in a long note’s length I shifted my eyes to the door that was opened to where I saw Taylor observing with his balance slightly on the door.
“Very well Jessie, you are marvelous.” Madam Casella complemented. She turned her head to me and saw my eyes were onTaylorthen to not increase her curiosity too high I let my eyes fall onto the piano’s keys. “Sara, have you taken singing lessons before?” Madam Casella asked crossing her arm across her waist and let her other elbow rest there and her hand cupped her chin in curiosity. I moved my blue eyes to her and replied, “No, I have not. This is actually my first time singing.” I licked my dry lips and titled my head down to continue staring at the keys. “Are you sure? You sound like a true prodigy.” Madam Casella commented. “I assure you I have never sung before and I sung with soul. I only sing with my breath and what my mind tells my voice level to go to. My mind controls how I sing, not my breath, or practice, but my mind controls everything when I just sung.” I admitted. “Now,” I continued. “I will let you continue with Jessie’s lessons. I have to prepare for the day.”
I walked towardsTaylorwhere he held open the door for me and he closed it with him outside the Ball Room with me. “You were amazing. You mesmerized me while you sung.”Taylorcomplimented. “Thank you. Where have you been?” I asked him. “What do you mean?”Taylor’s expression confused and his arms crossed. “Jessie says you were not under the tree and she was looking for you. Where have you been?” I repeated myself. “You do not need to know.” He replied almost a snarl and he began to walk away.
“What if I want to know?” I asked crossing my arms.Taylorstopped walking away and his arms fell to his side and balled into fists. “Believe me you do not want to know.” He said. “What is with you?” I asked angrily. “You always keep these secrets away from me. I wish you would just realize that you push me away by doing this and I guarantee you that I’m not going to deal with this mess you’re giving off. You’re just going to have to deal with it because I right now don’t care if I die, but at least I’ll die knowing.” I said.
I stormed off to my room and where I slammed the door so loud it could be heard over an earthquake.
Why does he do this? On my floor, in a corner I curled into a fetal position and I tried to hold back tears but they came anyway. I leaned my head against the wall. It was like at night everything was perfectly flawless then in the morning he says words that makes me wish I was outside and loose to the snow. He was gone this morning. Had he put me in bed before he left… after? What was he even doing leaving me? Meeting…someone? I didn’t want to think he could break my heart so quickly and easily. I buried my head in my knees and sobbed inconclusively. He talks about killing me…hurting me…he describes himself as a monster…what I did see that night of the assassins, that savage look in his eyes that glowed fully red, his fangs like a wolf’s. If he is breaking my heart, I might as well not wish for anything else really.Taylorwas my opportunity, and then I guess it was a sign that my wish wasn’t meant to come true. I would go along with my parents’ original plan. This way…I can see Father once more. Below was the Ball Room. I heard the guitar playing loudly…smoothly…lovingly… slowly…and it kept my thinking.
I wish for one thing in my life to go right—just for once, once my own. Hopefully it will be one day—someday in the near future. I wonder so much about the world around me so frequent that it’s like wondering about things will be my only thing in life worth having stuffed in my mind besides Father-and-me memories. I listened to my room quietly. The clock ticking…taking life away it is so unfair how people can’t see what the really need to see. People see what they wish to see. I see reality. I see what really happens in the eyes of people who have seen it too. Broken heart, one victor, the real victor death, stolen, abandoning, forgetting, hope-less wishing, imagination, real walks, real talks, fake dream.
I can’t see. My tears were watering my vision and with a wipe to my eyes I saw I was alone. There was never enough time to ever do anything while I could have, never was any time I could’ve really done anything I wished to do. I laugh at my own misery because it is just so damn funny. My life was nothing I wanted it to be. Freedom is what I desired. Freedom is a gift, freedom is a land, freedom is spirit, freedom is life, and freedom is the only thing I do not have. My body ached all over, my muscles tensing and tightening; my body cries for that freedom. A secret place to be my own being, a sweet escape to begin a new, I needed the sun to be on my side for that adventure—well more like dream. To refresh myself in a place would be my scream of victory. Then again…the supposed victor is the last one standing… the real victor death. Where the warm rivers flows where no one discovers the end, to the fields the slaves escape to, to the mountains that can never be climbed, to the villages that lay at the mercy of the earth. Dreams are a sign of hope.
This horrid place…no match for an escape; this cold snow…no match for the warmth of anything; this aching, crying feeling…not match for how I knew what really happened last night. Just take me away from this place, a secret escape, take away from here, to Planet Dream.
Resting my head on the wall and my sobs shadowing my dying heart I had fell into a dreamless sleep.
Finding into the world from mine I stared out the window. Night had risen and had covered me since morning. The snow continued as always. I didn’t suspect it to stop anytime while I was in life. From that far corner I sit in I saw the snow outside the window. My face felt like it was smothered with kisses of tears, my body had calmed from its shaking.
Noise was dead in the atmosphere. Everyone had fell in temporary slumber, all except one. Suddenly a jolt of something below me hit my foot. Below was the Ball Room. Unable to contain my curiosity I had gotten to my feet and following the sound down the stairs and then the Ball Room. I reached for the knob then with a jerk it opened but I went to the side out of the door’s way and waited for a moment. I slipped my feet carefully close to the door where I could see nothing then…nothing more. It was silent again. It was like my ears playing tricks on what I believe to want to hear. I entered more into the Ball Room to the piano. I sighed heavily and glid my fingers lightly as I circled it. Sometimes I wish I could only write my ending the way I wanted it to be, but some stories do not give the characters fair chances. Writing the unwritten parts of my life, painting my life, makes me wonder if I am not the painter or the author, the story would probably be stuck here how it will be.
Shifting my blue eyes to the left of the Ball Room there was an object on the floor. Consuming me curiosity led me to the side of the Ball Room then with the silence finally breaking there was a loud crash that hit the floor. Before I had gotten to the object I started my way to the right side of the black Ball Room. Was it another object I couldn’t make out from the blackness? With me coming closer to the object there was a sudden gust of wind passing me again and again. My curiosity was dimming and was being shadowed by fear; eyes unable to follow anything around me; then… it stops. I was turning around and jerking from side to side confused, lost in something I did not know.
It had stopped for little over a long thirty seconds. Dead silence was the loudest thing in the Ball Room now and death is not an option. I stayed in place lost I didn’t know what to do in a strange situation.
In a mille-second I had a hand over my mouth and an arm around my waist and suddenly saw blurred passages being pulled backwards. Nothing caught up to my vision for me to see anything clear. I made out that I was being dragged out the Ball Room in super speed, below the winding staircase where a secret door was wide open and down the wooden old stairs where crates of wooden boxes passed by me and before I could have a second to scream I found myself sitting in a corner where I was shielded by crates. I was scared in a shaking nerve-filled body. Everything was black except there was a small illumination that was a glowing candle. It was set on a crate that was taller than me.
Getting to my feet in a timid state of mind I widened my eyes and saw an assassin in black clothing andTaylorwith his glowing red eyes, his bare fangs. He looked like an animal, savage. I was so stricken by the clear vivid scene I had stumbled backwards and onto more wooden crates. My breathing became heavy and fast.Taylorturned the assassin’s back to him and his fangs went into the assassin’s skin on the back of the neck as his eyes glowed redder. After a long few seconds Taylor let the body of the assassin fall onto the floor as he began to calm down and his eyes went to their strong gray and he looked like the Taylor I see every moment at day and part night. He was breathing for air from exhaustion and in his gray eyes he was in his pain again.
“I’m sorry Sara.” He apologized. Silence consumed me and I was unable to speak words that lingered on my lip. “I was—you shouldn’t have been—you’re supposed to be up—I’m sorry.” He stuttered. “For what?” I asked. “For prote-cting me?” “For bringing you down here and let you see what you just saw.”Taylorsaid. “Taylorif I saw…I need and explanation. Tell me everything. Please talk to me.” I asked in a pleading voice.Taylorturned away from me and hesitated. I came near the assassin and as I began to bend down to see whatTaylorhad done my foot it something sharp as a shredded piece of glass. “Ow!” I exclaimed. I flopped on my butt on the floor and there was a needle in my foot. I yanked it out and the veil portion of the needle had a green-blue substance that reminded me of this bush father said to use for treating wounds.
“Sara!”Tayloryelled when he found me on my butt examining my foot. “There was a reason why I killed him.” “Oh, can it!” I snapped. “It’s no big deal this came form a plant that numbs the body named, The Sleeping Body. It just fazes me temporarily.” I explained. “How fast does it work?”Taylorasked. I observed the veil and saw the amount in it and the amount I estimated was in my foot and it traveling through my veins. “Considering the amount that went in my foot it should work about—” and my back fell to the floor where I couldn’t move any muscle in me. “Now.” I finished.
“Taylor,” I said. “While I lay here, unable to move, you talk to me about everything that you are keeping from me.”Taylorcame to my side and sat with crossed legs and put his hands together in a ball and asked, “Where would you like me to begin?” “Start with what you ‘can’t’ explain to me why you’re here.” I commanded.
“Your father was so concerned with your safety, so one day while I was traveling in a village—let’s say I’m not fully welcomed in—and when he observed how I was able to… escape from a Chez guard he asked me if I could do a major top secret favor for him. He asked me if I could look over his daughter. At first I thought he was a little mad but when he said I would serve a country a duty I and my friends I was traveling with would be handsomely rewarded. My friends pursued me into coming and I met you.
“Now the reason for it being acan’texplanation is what had happened when one of your father’s soldiers made a comment about my friend, Anna and my other friend I travel with did not appreciate it and he killed the soldier. How he killed him was because of what Seth and I are. There is no official name for our kind but because of what we do we can be considered monsters. What we do when we are angry or hungry, we feed on human life energy. The life energy in a human is what makes us the most deadly creatures on the entire earth. Your father did not see this and when I came here I did not want to be feared by the family who trusted me with their life for protecting their eldest daughter.
“When I saw you I thought you hated me instantly and I thought both:This will be easy to keep the secret…andI really wish I had left the deal undecided.Because I thought when you did hate me you wouldn’t want anything to do with me and that was where my feeling for you became serious and the money was not important anymore. I was making sure you were alive. What else would you like me to confess?”
I hadn’t realized how he kept that a secret but it was his choice to keep so it would make it a‘won’t’,‘can’t’means a whole different this. “Were you forced to keep that secret by someone?” I asked.
“My kind is extremely dangerous that we have a leadership that had been around thous-ands of years to keep order or we would be slaughtering people here and there and that leader, Felix, made these rules for all of our kind around the world. He made these rules so we can be secret for us to live a normal life as possible. The rules were: 1) don’t reveal to a human what we are. 2) Don’t fall in love with a human. 3) Feed no more than three people a day. 4) Changin into a human would require you to be a human for only five days then the Clan of Satan will have no choice but to execute you.
“If anyone should disobey these rules there would only be execution. Seth and I were lucky for getting out two times. Now obviouslymostof my kind would follow these rules…others like I and Seth don’t really follow rules one and two. He has Anna and we revealed ourselves to her. Anna and Seth are soul mates. I…am too…care-full of you that I won’t admit what I really, truly feel about you, Sara, because I won’t put a target on you anymore than what you are now.”Taylorexplained getting to his feet when I noticed as he got to his feet his dagger. I yanked it out of his pocket and stabbed it in the wooden floor.Taylorsat back down and I asked, “You said ‘Clan of Satan’…is they located onSatanMountain?”
“Yes, and they work for Satan and the clan believes we were made for him. I would have to agree. I’m doing this for only to be as near you as I can without wanting to kill you. What I have done in the past with other humans I don’t wish to put in your mind. Sara I worked for the devil. I do not want to but that was who I was made for. I want nothing in the world but the most two important things in my life: out of Satan’s grasp of control…and you. I cannot have either one for many reasons. The first, you are betrothed, you are royalty, and I do not want to hurt you. The second, I cannot leave his grasp because I have him in me, and all the rules prevent me from having you. Sara you do not understand all the pain I have in my body because it desires your human life energy because I can sense it is strong, and I want to love you but I cannot.
“We transform into what we are which is mostly considered monsters. Most people would look at the victim’s body and assume vampire but we are no where near blood-sucking. The best place to feed on a life source is at the back of the neck where the soul is more in the back part of the body and the back of the neck is the pressure point of the life energy.”
“You don’t wish to tell me about the people you have killed but while I am numb and basically glued to the floor, you still have to tell me everything I need to know.” I pleaded. I needed to know so I could understand him better instead of wondering. He doesn’t need to say he is a monster because he isn’t.
Taylorsearched for those memories full of pain and told, “Seth and I were just about to meet Anna when we found out she was betrothed as well to someone else, but she actually loved him. What Seth did was not necessary but Anna was poor and she was marrying a man who could save her family in her eyes, but the truth was that her fiancé was only into having…a trophy wife. Seth wanted her to have better so he had killed the fiancé. And what I did I would make sure his death would be a mystery I slaughtered his family. Sara do you know what that family consisted of?”
I shifted my eyes to my right then back to the left andTaylorcontinued.
“That family had a mother who was forty-six, a young son who was six, a new born daughter about three months, a grandmother about seventy and a grandfather around the age of eighty and an innocent young lady who lived there because her house had been burned. Anna thought there was a plague and she left with us and years later she and Seth had each other. That may have been the end of the problem but after that a new problem came: Anna’s family was searching for her. Seth would’ve been devastated if Anna was gone and she would be forced into marriage again. So I had to kill off her family. Her mother, father, little sisters and little brother were found dead in a creek fifty miles away from Anna’s village and that was the end of our problem.
“There was another time period where the first time Seth and I had got captured by the Clan of Satan, they starved us nearly to death to the point we were about to kill each other then while on that breaking point Felix brought in a peasant girl form a village that was haunted by Satan’s Mountain. She was beat up and dirty and when they released Seth and I we were fighting over that girl then we attacked her without warning, Seth bit her wrist I had her neck. Even when we were done with her we had torn her to shreds, literally, with our teeth and hands we tore out her arms and neck and every little joint in her was disconnected. There was nothing left of her.
“Damn it!”Taylorscreamed as it would’ve normally made me jump back I was still numb and only gained feeling for my arms.
“Sara,” he said. “I don’t want this to happen to you. Ever. I don’t want to hurt you. If I am out of control I cannot stop myself from hurting—possibly killing you—there is no cure for what I am. I cannot be tamed. It is impossible for us to even control ourselves. I have just made you a target for any of my kind to kill you; as if it wasn’t enough my kind is hard to fight off. Not easy to destroy and almost impossible to kill. If I get too comfortable around you I will let my guard down and that is when more harm will be aimed for you. Sara I don’t have any choice but to be who I am and that is a piece of work from Satan. There is so much hurt in me to fight whether to feed from you or to stay away as far as I can. I won’t risk your life anymore than this.”
“Taylor,” I say. “You still have to answer one more question of mine and the numbness in m body will allow me to move again.Taylordo you have any abilities that strengthen you while you are in your transformation?”
“Yes, there is this ability that allows us to move at incredible speed called Flash-step and we are just naturally strong in both stages.” He answered.
I curled my fingers slowly regaining my feeling and slid my legs slowly upward, bending them and rolling my shoulders and shoulder blades to where I could sit up. As my chin reached my bent knees and I wrapped my arms around my legs I could not feel anything but an ache in my stomach as it dropped and I felt my head go light where I could see in a blurry and fading-to-black vision, before I could fall I closed my eyes and surprisingly made it as far as my feet. I counted the seconds of how long I could stand up and I began to take my first step, in my seconds I made it to woo. I had fallen into warm strong arms that could only beTaylor.
He had gotten to his feet supporting me and I re-opened my eyes and everything was just crammed in my head. “I know,”Taylorsaid. “It is a lot to take in. I—I—I don’t know what to do now that you are a bigger target.”
“Stay here and protect me.” I said. “You really do make me laugh Sara Patrick.”Taylorsaid. “Don’t get used to it. I’m not even trying.” I admitted. “That is the quality I like about you Sara. You don’t try, you are yourself. That is what I admire about you, you can be yourself. Myself I have to deal with it.”
I felt woozy, not right. I collapsed intoTaylor’s arms again. He picked me up in his arms and took his time to walk up the stairs to the main floor. “You just enjoy me carrying you, don’t ya?”Taylorplayfully teased. “You could say that.” I said trying but unsuccessfully keep my voice blank. “You enjoy carrying me, don’t you?” I asked back. “You could say that.”Taylorreplied. “How is it though, I always end up carrying you to your room? Don’t you ever stay up there?” “Why? So you could keep me up there in safety?” I asked. “Kind of, if you promise to keep my secret a secret.” AsTaylorascended the stairs and reached the top stepTaylorstopped.
Instead of turning to the right where my room wasTaylorhad turned his body to the left where Jason stood. Jason’s black hair fell like a mop’s head in front of his face. His eyes and his taunting smirk cut through me like a blade.Taylorsat me down on my feet and kept his body forward but kept his stare and head towards Jason. “I know about the assassin thing, but is it really necessary for you to carry my fiancé everywhere?” Jason asked. I raised my eyebrows worried where the conversation would go. “I believe it’s necessary for me to protect your fiancé.”Taylorreplied. Jason furrowed his brows and even though it was still night out I could see an even blacker darkness in his expression. I had actually stepped back. Jason stepped forwards toTaylor’s side where there was an opening to me. “Why don’t you just go back outside and do what ever monsters do?” Jason’s words sent a jolt of electricity through me.Taylorlooked paralyzed, stunned, and felt like he was unable to move; his eyes wide with shock and surprise and his body frozen in still placement. Jason smiled a smile I had not seen on his face before. Jason put his hand onTaylorshoving him aside and started towards me but as he started to stepTaylorhad taken hold of Jason’s hand and in that Flash-step technique he had Jason pinned to the wall in a blink of an eye.
“You have no right to push me anywhere Taylor Gore.” Jason smirked asTaylor’s gray eyes darken into a black and his bare teeth in a bare snarl. “Why don’t you say what you want to say Jason Skeleington?”Taylorasked his voice harsh and threatening. “You are in no position to scare me Taylor.” Jason smirked. He shifted his eyes down to his hand where Taylor and I followed with our eyes to see Jason holdingTaylor’s dagger at his heart where it was just at the edge of cutting through his skin and impaling his heart.Taylorreleased Jason from his grip and stepped back two steps. “Like I said, you better get back to your position and stop playing with Sara. I think you’ve hurt her enough in more ways you can’t even imagine.” Jason threatened. “You will make this family so much happier if you left. Do you know the tears you made Sara shed already? In just three days she has cried and hurt more than any girl should. I don’t enjoy seeing her in pain, and don’t think I won’t do anything about it if she ever falls again.”
Taylorcalmed his expression but still kept it on alarm. I had the ability to move my legs again and walk towards Jason and lightly push down his hand that was tightly clenched on the dagger. The dagger left Jason's grip and I had it in my palm, flipped it where the handle was inTaylor’s grasp and he took it. I was silent. Jason took a tight hold of my hand and led me down the green walled hall and into my room. Before Jason could shut the door and he would go back to his room I whispered to him, “Please behave around him.” “What if he doesn’t control himself when he’s around you and you get hurt? I’ve known you too long for you to make such a decision that could end your life. I understand it’s weird for you but I am just as weired-out as much as you. It makes me uncomfortable to know I’ll soon be wed to an old-time friend, but I’ve known you long enough to not let you hurt yourself. I won’t see you get hurt. Promise me you will stay away from him. Please, for me.” Jason begged. “Jason I’ve tried but for you I will continue to try. I’ll try Jason.” I promised. Jason shut my door and I was in the blackness around my room surrounded by soon-to-be-haunting memories. Knowing whatTaylorhad just told and how he acts and moves around me, I know he’ll leave.
I can’t rest knowingTaylorwill leave. Observing the previous tearsTaylorhadn’t really left, if he did, I don’t know what I would do. I could be wrong. I don’t want to get myself worked up for something that couldn’t happen. All these flames burning before me could never be extinguished. And the fire was growing larger and even larger than before.
* * *
“Father is a fire really dangerous?” I ask still reading Coraline. I set the book down open in my lap and waited for Father to answer. Father set his book in his lap and replied, “Sara a fire just can’t be dangerous. Fire is life, but it can be dangerous. Fire can leave scars. Fire can be so many things to different people. Fire can be a thing of warmth, a… memory, life, some people can tell the future with fire and other things people can do with fire. How would you see fire Sara dear?” I thought, wondered, and believed, “Fire is scaring memories. How do you see fire Father?” I asked. “Life. Where there is fire there is life, like water, where there’s water there is life where there is life there is water… same thing with fire.”
* * *
From that rainy night I had always wondered how I could use fire. Flames of taunting, haunting, hurtful, undying flames of noting but scaring memories that was what fire was to me; scared memories just burning for the pleasure of scaring me longer.
As I slid my feet to my bed I felt a jerk to one side of my body then another yank. I felt like I was being pushed around but there was nothing here. I felt my body go numb again and as I was being pushed and pulled I fell to the floor and felt feet kicking me from all around. Attempting to crawl along the floor I realized it was pointless. The flames grew stronger because it was not yet a memory that will scar me but a knowing I will be scared. Under the heavy weight that fell on my shoulders I had fell into slumber.
I shot up. In a cool sweat I felt warm. I felt my head and patted my body to my legs and found myself in one piece. The story thatTaylorhad told me about that girl he and Seth had slaughtered while they were nearly starved I had that nightmare from me being that girl. I new it wasn’t real but I felt that hurt in me that was. Dreams can’t hurt you but something can if you believe it does hurt. I cupped my heart and felt it beat wildly, out-of-control, and like a throbbing pain that pumped hurt in my veins.
It was still night. I believe. It was around one in the morning when I had fell asleep so to see what time it was now I had gotten to my feet in a hurry and made it to the clock on my vanity. Roman time’s numerals and the twisted winding short hour hand said it was six. How long was I asleep?
Changing out of my clothes into a light dull yellow dress and brushing my hair to the one side of my shoulder where it fell to my waist. I had hurried my way to the stairs, jogged down to the main floor and to the window. Under-neath the tree wasTaylor. He had his knees bent and his face buried in them with his arms around them, closing himself in. As much as I wanted to go outside and just be there with him but I didn’t want to talk. After all that talk about him saying he was a monster and he worked for Satan, I felt like I am being watched, my every move was monitored.
If he was going to convince me he was a monster he needed to have a lot of proof to even me consider he was made Satan to cause more chaos in the world because all I see is a handsome, fine-willed, and peaceful soul in him. I sat on the built-in couch where I sat the first night and I found a body with a massive wound that had dyed my hand red.
Feeling unhelpful and like I couldn’t do anything, I could’ve only sat there in silence of a night that was new and the long old gone day that I passed with slumber. I knew he felt like a monster but he wasn’t going to tell me another word of he could kill me just because he was made for Satan. That was impossible. I believe in God and Satan but I worshiped God and knewTaylorhad God’s guidance in him.
If he was under Satan’s control he would have killed me by now for…my…life energy. It was scary to know that the one true person in my life was a…transformer into a stage that—that—that has killed people. His tales has sent jolts of fright in my being but it wasn’t enough for me to say he is a monster. It tells me he made mistakes for friends’ sakes that he chose to follow.
I wanted to set everything right for us two, nothing should impact us but…everything in the world wasn’t that simple. If I needed to understand him then I needed to see what he has seen and felt what he felt and I needed to know how he thought. This was a lure that was stronger than me, so I did not have to be weaker. I had jerked my legs to follow where my heart and mind wanted me to be.
Treading through the snow as fast as my strength could allow me I had quicken my stride to a run and when I had reached five feet ofTaylorI had stopped running and walked and let my legs fall that plopped me in the snow on my knees.
My arm reached forTaylorand brought his face to my view where I could see his gray eyes in hurt that was killing me. “Sara,” he began but I cut him off. “No,Taylor, you are going to listen to me and you are going to trust me so I can feel what you feel. I want and need to know what it is that bothers, hurts, and puts you in such pain.” “Sara you don’t need to see and feel what I have seen and felt. You don’t have to and I would rather you accept the fact that I don’t want you to see the things that have made me a horrifying monster.”
I shot him a look to show I was serious. “I don’t care, I need to understand and I also believe it may give me some-thing to keep thinking about when you’re gone.” “How did you know I was leaving?”Taylorasked. “I may not be as smart as you but I am not the stupidest girl here.” I replied. “Taylor,” I continued. “Please, I want to understand. Just one thing before you leave me for good.”
Taylortook his hands and held my face in his light grip and looked into my eyes. “I don’t want you to see what I have seen. It could hurt and damage you—you—you don’t know what—” “I want to know and don’t argue with me anymore. Because you will allow me to see.” I interrupted.Taylorlet his hands fall pass my neck and to my shoulders where he had fell silent. I slid my palms to his cheeks and glid further where I had crossed my palms over his ears and my index fingers over his tensing temples. He was scared for what I was about to see.
I closed my eyes and focused on one thing:Taylor’s past. Show me what I needed to see what he has done. A short moving image came into my head and felt like I was seeing it through my eyes.
“What do you see Sara?”Taylorasked. He must’ve felt the squeezing tension I made on his head from the image.
“I see, a man, about twenty, black hair, kind of dark skin sort of pale, and frosted black eyes, like they were black but they seemed frozen in ice. He brings up his arm, a stronger man comes in black hair, black normal eyes, and he is carrying a boy, blonde hair, dirty face and charming green eyes—”
“Sara no, not this memory, please not this one.”Taylorbegged but I continued to see.
“He is being held by two strong men, each gripping the blonde haired boy and the black frosted eyed man is walking forward with a frosted wide-mouthed glass with some clear liquid but not water. He is pouring it in the boy and he is trying to resist but—but—but” I felt my face wince in pain of watching this boy. “He drank the water.” I continued. “You are being let out of the cage and you are being ordered to take his…life energy.”
The pain in this boy’s eyes was frightening to see of how he could be so scared. He was struggling as much as he could but it wasn’t enough. His face was dirt and skin and his eyes were nothing but fear and scare.
“You are to him now. You are feeding from him. You stop. He is drained of his life source…wait he’s getting to his feet, slowly painfully, he is changing, he is…transforming. You changed him. The blonde hair turned snow white, like yours, his eyes is still green but duller, like a green and gray mix.”
I retrieved my hands to my side and the moving images disappeared. I opened my eyes and sawTaylor’s eyes were closed tightly. “Who was that boy?” I asked. “That boy you saw had just lost his life, his soul, and his freedom, his name is Seth.” My eyes widened in shock to know. “What happ-ened in the memory, what were you doing?” I asked as calmly as my voice could go.
“What you just saw was the Clan of Satan. Who you saw with the frosted black eyes is Felix the leader of the clan. What had happened was that we needed a new transformation, so they took me in because I was still new and Felix knew I couldn’t resist. So I was going to create a new monster. It’s where we take innocent people from villages and create them under the work of Satan. Satan believes that the more he has to control the more chaos and mayhem there will be and the human race will be only ghouls and ghosts and souls that he abuses and make them do whatever he pleases.”
“Taylor? What do you believe Satan has done to you? You’ve been on the run for about your whole life, what could he do to you that would make you want to die?” I asked.
“Take you away. Satan can do anything he pleases and one of those things he loves to do is play with me. He can take you away. The most popular thing he is known for, Sara, is getting people to do the most three evil things: 1) seeing with the eyes with lust, 2) feeling with flesh with lust, and 3) proud of life.
“Those three evil things are what gets people to Hell or as the villagers of Bridgingvill are familiar with:SatanMountain. He is most famous for this.”Taylorexplained.
He was right the Bible does mention this. The Ten Commandments also the ten real laws says this. “Taylor,” I said. “No one can hurt me; I am perfectly safe with—” “Don’t say no one can hurt you.”Taylorcut me off. “Anyone can hurt you. And I know and you know I can hurt you. You just need to accept the fact that I can kill you if I wanted to.”
“Then why haven’t you?” I asked.Taylorlooked at me silent. Without his reply I had gotten to my feet and began walking further out where I have never been before: the wood. As I began my walkTaylorhad gotten to his feet and grabbed my wrists with fury and wiriness. “And just where do you think you’re going?” he asked.
“To see what it is like.” I replied harsh and fast. I yanked back my wrist and began walking again. “If this is your idea of some kind of trick to see if I’ll come after you you’re wrong!”Tayloryelled but I kept walking.
I needed to be far away from here. I had to get away from everything and be on my own, at least until I felt like going back. I kept walking through the silent snow and let the snow sink in my skin as it melted from the warmth that was being taken piece by piece.
Before I had fully stepped foot in the wood I heardTaylorexclaim in frustration and slammed his two palms on each side of the tree. “Damn it Sara! You have to stop being so stubborn! Sara you make it so hard for me to be with you!”
As I treaded through the light fluffy snow I heard the snow crack behind me. I turned and as I did turn to seeTaylormy body was hit by a train. I was slammed against a tree so hard snow fell from its branches and onto us. When I had the courage to open my eyes I saw a black mask concealing the face of an assassin. I saw him raise a blade so close to my face and it glid on my cold, snow white skin and when I was pulled back for a tough impact the assassin flew to the side and I sawTaylor. He pinned the assassin to a tree causing the snow to fall heavy as well. His eyes full glowing savage red, his bare k-9 teeth sharp as blades itself and his impossible strength and speed was hard to keep up with see-ing.
Taylorhad snarled and growled at the assassin enough and had finally bit the side of the assassin’s neck and ripped out flesh from him. I was still pinned to the tree but at my own force.Taylorthrew the assassin across to another tree causing that heavy white snow to fall on the assassin andTaylorhad taken his dagger from his side pocket and threw it where it flipped several times then it was stuck in the snow where it had leaked out red. My face was calm but my heart was wild and my hair was in my face. I took a deep breath and dimmed the speed my heart and wiped the hair from my face and stuck it behind my ear for I to see clear.
I detached my racing-veined body from the bark of the tree and tried to glimpse atTaylor’s gray eyes. He looked to me and from that small distance between us I felt the frustration and anger that shocked to me from his being.
“I thought you said you weren’t coming after me.” I say as I walk closer to him. “I’m your guardian I have to protect you…not matter how much I was angry. And I couldn’t let you die; I promised your father, your family and you I would put your life before mine.” He replied.
“How do I anger you? You say I do so much to you but I don’t know what I’m doing. Please tell me. I want you to be comfortable around me; I want you to be able to talk to me. Please what do I do to make you so angry or so uncomfor-table?” I begged.
“Your life energy is so strong. The younger you are the more energy you have, you believe in everything and you’re not afraid of anything, you have a strong imagination, you are at this stage in childhood. Because you have such a strong imagination and you can’t let go of your father’s words, it keeps you imagining and you have the spirit of a strong child. And when you have a spirit that strong and imagination it is impossible for us to not ignore it.
“It drives me mad when I sense that much life energy and with it in you, I can’t hurt you. I won’t hurt you. Sara I can’t stop thinking about you; not matter how much I try I can’t get you out of my head, Sara you for just being…you drives my being insane. Do you know how hard it is to love someone and you don’t wish any harm comes to them but you want to have their life energy? I want you to live and because you haven’t dimmed in believing in such things a child believes in I will eventually drive me into madness and I can’t control myself and that’s when I can kill you.
“If I get that mad I can’t stop. It’s a struggle to keep even a shiver of weakness from your eyes—”
Taylor’s voice got louder to shouting and he did start to shake and his eyes were fading to a red and his teeth became sharper like a wolf. As scared as I was I had run to him and hugged him tightly with my arms around his torso. “Please don’t transform.” I wept. “I’m sorry! I don’t want to hurt you any longer. Just please don’t talk about your pain. I know it must hurt because I can feel it from your words. PleaseTaylor! I don’t want you to be hurt in pain anymore. Please!”
I felt cold tears freeze on my pale cheeks asTaylor’s hands lightly held my shoulders. His lips pressed to my hair where his hot tears mixed with mine and un-froze the memories. Tears are memories without them we wouldn’t have anything to remind ourselves of good and bad.
“Sara this is why I have to leave.” He said. His words crushed my heart and I began gagging on air. “Sara I have to leave today. I can’t hurt you if I am away. Sara you will be safe. If I stay in one place the Clan of Satan will come and they will destroy your country so much that there won’t be a Willolonia to rule. they want you and they’ll pick up my scent if I stay here I will lead them away. You just promise me you will stay here… marry…Jason, live with your family. Goodbye.”
He let go of me and my arms fell along with me.Taylorwas gone in that Flash-step and I was in the snow again. In the wood alone. I felt forgotten like an abandoned child with nothing left but their self. I only had myself, and I was alone in this cold trap. Too good to be true. Nothing that whimsical can last as long as I hadTaylorwith me. I could only imagine what it would be like if he was by my side. Don’t go to sleep. Don’t go to sleep. He’s gone.
On my knees in the freezing snow and tears frozen to my cheeks I felt myself get colder and colder as in this end nothing else matters. My heart was aching as my wounds never seemed to close. I sobbed in the alone-ness and I had screamed to the stars, “Damn! I hope you’re happy, you’ve watched me in agony, you’ve watched me in tears.” I was giving up. “All I’ve done is bark at the stars! And I couldn’t do anything to help myself.” But this time is different.
Feeling my insides rip from limb to limb and my heart in a slow dying beat as I knew there would be no turning back.
No, he’s gone. He’s never coming back to me. He says he’s protecting me but like he says “I made a promise to your family and father that I protect you from harm” I haven’t loved long but it was the—the—the I can’t even put it in words but it’s like—like I’m floating along with someone who is so perfect with me in the starry night and I can’t even talk from this love. Its toll on me has me in this state where I can’t help but fall deep into it. I guess I’ll admit it. I’ll admit it. “I’ll admit it!” I shouted to the stars. I loveTaylor. I loveTaylor. “I loveTaylor!”
He’s on his way, I only have one thing bothering me…I didn’t mean to hurt him.
I slithered my finger slowly through the cold snow and let my arms follow to where I had coated myself in a snow blanket. Feeling my heart die I might as well know how my world ends… ice. Never fire.
“You knew she had been in this condition for how long?” Madam Patrick asked Jason as they stood over Sara as she slept the day away while she only dreamed of one thing.
“Through out this week.” Answered Jason rubbing Sara’s forehead as she sweated nervously under her slumber. “You believe she could’ve known Philippe had been deceased during that time?” Madam Patrick asked worried if being so close to her father could have led to her strange behavior. She had been thinking a lot of her memories with him. Their ever moment together in her childhood was like gold to her.
“I suppose she could have considering her strong connection with him.” Jason replied. Madam Patrick shook her head with tears rolling down her cheeks and swelling in her eyes. “The girls will be devastated to know the truth. Philippe was excited to hold her arm down that isle. He was everything in her life. Now that Taylor left we need someone to protect Sara.”
Taylorhad raised suspicions for Madam Patrick. “Jason dear, has Taylor had any…effect on Sara?” she asks as she examines Sara’s sudden change in breathing. Her breathing sped when she said Taylor’s name. “I did notice that almost everynight he was carrying Sara to her room. Then last night I had encountered him and there was a little… disagreement but Sara seemed perfectly fine when I escorted her to her room.”
“Do you find it strange howTaylorleaves when the letter comes about Philippe’s death when it was sent the very dayTaylorarrived?” Madam Patrick questioned wonderingly. Jason took a quick glimpse of Madam Patrick then turned back to Sara. “Now that you mention this I suppose I see why you would have suspicions.” “Because,” Madam Patrick said. “I now worry about Sara. She has never had such tears like this ever in her life. She had never looked so destroyed. Do you suppose she has gone mad?” “I don’t believe she could be. She is never mad.” Jason replied.
Within that snow I heard something. My name. It couldn’t have. I was in the snowy wood to admit…something and I wanted to be alone.
“Sara? Are you coming through?” that voice said. Male, strong, slight accent…Pepe`. “Lady Sara? Oh, Lady Sara you shouldn’t scare me like that.” He said. I fluttered my eyes open and saw with new eyes Pepe` over me. “Lady Sara please tell me what you were doing out in the wood alone in the ground.” Pepe` demanded.
“I am in the cold wood.” I say as I realize I was in my bed; warmth over me but still cold. “Lady Sara you need to be more careful. You realize that Taylor Gore had just left and there is no guardian to protect you, if Jason hadn’t found you probably would’ve frozen to death if an assassin hadn’t found you first.” Pepe` said worry-full. “I didn’t really care at the time whether I had died or not.” I confessed. “Lady Sara,” Pepe` said. “Taylorhas left and we have just received a notification that your father has died of an unexplainable death.”
My body suddenly came awake and I snapped out of my blanking mind. Blue eyes began to swell with tears and my lips were pursed together from such—this—pain. Everything happens so fast. I couldn’t take it in no matter how much it pounded on my heart. I felt Pepe`’s arms around my shoulders as I lost all control of myself.
It wasn’t a loud cry; silence was the loudest sound in the room with tears dripping to my chest trying to mock my heart of these flames. I can’t breathe properly anymore; I can’t stop the rain of my eyes from falling. I softened my face as I cried silently of the still dusk of the dawning night. I escaped Pepe`’s comforting grip and wearily strode my way to Mother who was on the couch in her thinking space.
“Mother?” I ask as I sit by her side. A tear escaped from her destroyed eyes. “Do Jesse and Jessica know of this?” She replied with her voice stunned and tired. “I told them, ‘Father is never coming back. But he is still protecting us even if the war ends.’” “I wish I had gotten the news broken in that manner.” I confessed.
I had gotten to my feet again and sat in my position of the bench where I would watchTaylorfrom this angle and study his pain. Pain, pain, pain… pain. That hurt that destroys me. I leaned my head against the glass window and imaginedTaylorstill sitting there. This toll straining me and I’ll wear these scars for Father to see I have found someone who I really like—love and he really likes me too, I don’t care if he admits it or not I know he does. I closed up walls to be only in my mind in frozen time that my imagination would to see his gray eyes piercing me with wonder. I still have my goal with me since Mother gave me my freedom to decide to marry Jason: Keep myself from falling. I felt Mother penetrate my walls, patted my shoulder and stepped her way to her room on the second floor. My walls regained their stableness to keep me from the world and I was beyond thought at this point in frozen time.
I sought only two things: Taylor and the murderer of my father.
Over through the night I stayed wake and stared through the wood watching the tracks vanish underneath the snow. I had a dream, a never ending dream that I only dreamed of, it was only of him and being in his embrace and we were still as everything else moved along.
* * *
“You know Sara there is more to life than just to live.” Father said as I was in a trying wedding dress that was full-length, long sleeves, a long train, and a swirling pattern for the torso and the dress fell in layers of white. “What is more in life we need to do?” I asked. “You sacrifice for the people you love in life.” He replied. “You just need faith inside which I doubt you’ll ever loose. Even when we are thousands of miles apart you remember to not give up on love because you can’t… it’s all around you.”
* * *
I had actually revealed a smile that was small but smiles can go along with tears, they are memories, if we don’t cry then we don’t know who we are.
I met someone who I know I love and he came to me on a platter. I take it. I take it. I take it! I love you! I felt my spirit rise with the stars and I am making sure he is not getting away. I needed a plan. I’ll go all the way to get the win of just to see him.
Because it was still night and everyone was asleep I had all night to gather the few things I need. Actually getting to my feet without any drag it was like being energized in a matter of seconds when I needed it. I smiled and ran upstairs savaged thought my closet and yanked out a black cloak and pulled it over my head. Exiting my room and jogging down the hall and down the stairs I had actually made it to the front door. I gripped the handles and exchanged breathes claming my poor heart down. I might never see my sisters again or Mother. If Father was still alive I would have stayed but nothing was going to drag me down this time. I’m shutting off my eyes and hid my shame for my decision, with nothing to look back on. Everything I used to know I didn’t drag with me. I move on now and I only take regret with me if anything should happen to me or my family.
“Lady Sara,” Pepe` says to me from my side and he held out a small bag with some weight and presumably bread and a canister of tea he handed it to me. “I’ll say you are in your room and only I am allowed to see you. I’ll cover you for as long as I can.” “Thank you Pepe`; I am great-full and I know you are risking everything but I am so thankful.” I say as tears threatened to come but I held them back. “Go now Lady Sara and I am only doing this if your promise that you will come back.” he conditioned. “I will I promise.” I said not entirely sure about coming back…alive.
Treading through the silent snow was easier than I had imagined it is. Though the snow was light and it was twenty degrees warmer I could not see the last of my home. I knew that there was no turning back; just forward.
Not knowing how far I have traveled or any sense of where I was going I began to feel heavy snow pile on my shoulders. Brushing it off I thought of the consequences that will become of this. I knew one thing I had to resist is being my little stubborn self wanting to do what I thought was right. I knew that someday it will get me dead.
Black ate me.