He was a little dark-haired boy, of about six years old, with deep blue eyes and a terrified, wild look written across his features. He had a dagger in his small, clenched fist, the cruelly sharp edge making his hand bleed. Tears diluted the blood on his face to a swirly pink.
“I want my mommy! I want to go home! I DON’T WANT TO DIE!”
On the word ‘die’, the boy’s voice became a deep roar, not like the temperamental screeches of a child, but the bellowing of a wounded bull. The boy had been lying spread-eagled on the floor, pulling himself forward on stick-limbs, but now he was pulling himself to his feet and running swiftly towards Caden with the dagger pointing towards him.
“Hey! Stop that!”
Caden tried to sound firm. He grabbed the boy’s wrists, but the child had the strength of a full-grown man, and twisted free, landing the dagger into Caden’s leg.
Caden winced; face paling with agony, as he watched the blood pour out. He would have to find some medical supplies afterwards. The boy was running forwards again, aiming for Caden’s chest this time.
Caden raised his gun and fired a single bullet into the boy’s head. He watched with horror as the small skull collapsed and more stains leaked onto the white painted walls and tiled floor in smooth rivers, too slow after the initial hot burst.
“I killed a child.”
He said to himself; as he pried the dagger from the tightening little fist, beginning to clench in rigor mortis. He examined the dagger – short and silver, with a purple stone in the hilt – before pocketing it.
“Where does a kid get something like this? Somebody must have given it to him!”
Caden mused; forgetting that Jude wasn’t with him. Right now, time was running out for him. There was still blood gushing from the wound in his leg. The kid knew exactly where to aim. He tore a strip from a thick towel that hung on a silver railing at the other side of the room (next to a pedestal sink) and wrapped it tightly like a crudely-fashioned tourniquet. Caden cursed himself for laughing off Jude’s suggestion to bring medical supplies hours before they had been deployed on the mission. Jude knew what she was talking about – Caden had been trying to act cool.
That’ll keep me from bleeding out while I find some proper supplies.
He thought to himself; not talking aloud again. Ten minutes by himself and he was already in a bad state. Stabbed by a little kid with unnaturally adult strength; his clothes had red stains on them, his class-ring was caked with drying blood and he was using a bit of an old towel as a tourniquet.
There was another door at the other side of the room, a white-gloss painted one to match the rest of the room’s colour scheme. Caden didn’t want to go through but he had to. He was already regretting his decision to separate from Jude. She was probably fearlessly charging through hallways, shooting monsters effortlessly while she cheerfully hummed her favourite rock anthems. Or at least that was what she did in training…