chapter 8 : Capricious
It was morning, I open my eyes and realized I was the only person in the bed. It seems Aria got up a lot earlier. I wonder if I was still holding onto her hand when she woke up.
After rolling from side to side I finally got up from bed. I opened the windows to let the fresh air in and folded the blankets.
This isn't so bad, even though the place was a bit run down, the change of pace was good in a way. Being a merchant's daughter, me and my father was always travelling so we didn't have a place of our own.
I went down stairs looking for everyone and what greeted me was the sweet smell of freshly baked bread and the aroma of roasted meat. Suddenly, I could hear the sound of my stomach grumbling, remembering the food from last night I'm glad I could finally eat my fill.
" Good morning Kim. "
I look at the direction of the voice and I saw Lotte arranging the plates.
" Good morning " I replied, before making my way towards the table.
" Wow, there's so much food! are we celebrating something?
" I'm not really sure myself Kim, when I got up from bed I saw Aria cooking and she was already done cleaning the house.
" Hmm... where is Oneechan by the way?
" Aria said she forgot to buy something else so she went to the grocer, I believe she's on her way back by now.
" Is that so... Oh well I guess we're gonna have to start without her then.
" Kim! Stop that, Aria was kind enough to wake up early and prepare these for us, it would be rude to eat without her.
" But I'm starving already...
Just then the door opened and Aria came dashing in, she was breathing heavily, with sweat running down her forehead.
" Speaking of the devil. " I said, looking at her.
" haa... haa... ( panting ) Good morning Kim. ( smiles ) sorry I took so long getting back, did you just wake up? your face is a mess you know.
Realizing how unkept my face may have looked at that time, I proceeded to wash my face with water.
" Puwah.... cold, umm..... huh?
" Here, use this to wipe the water off.
Aria was handing me a piece of soft fabric, I looked at it for a while before taking it from her hand.
" Thanks... " I said to her.
" Your welcome. ( smiles ) I'm sure your hungry, lets go back to the table and eat.
" Umm... sure... lets... ( whats up with her... she seems unusually cheerful today )
Seeing the food in front of me, I lost all ethics and started munching down on everything. It was so good! The bread rolls had a bit of cheese in the middle and the melted cheese complimented the bread by making it so that when eating it, left a soft and heavenly mix of cheesy goodness with every bite. The apple pie was also good, I was able to eat two slices before taking a bite of the roasted wild boar. The fat oozed out everytime I used the knife to cut it into smaller pieces.
It was going great until...
" Whats wrong Lotte? you seem a bit distracted. " I said this while taking a glance at her face.
" Hmm?... its probably nothing. I'm just worried a little. Sorry for ruining the mood, the food tastes great its just that.
" Its been three day since my husband left and he still hasn't returned. He's an adveturer, his group should have been back yesterday but... never mind...
" Well, if thats the case then maybe the guild has given him a quest and its just taking a lot longer.
" Your right, Its probably just as you said. I'm sure Gavin is doing fine.
Just then, I could swear I heard something break. The next thing I knew I was making my way to Aria's side and slapped her hard on the face. My hand hurt and a little bit of blood was coming out of Aria's lips.
I knew by then that I had completely caught her off guard, she was laying on the ground and shivering.
Picking her up by grabbing the collar of her dress. I wanted to punch her, but I didn't. She was smiling,...... her eyes were closed and on the verge of tearing up.
I watched her as she slowly opened them infront of me. By then, I had already lost all interest.
" You know what? I dont even know why I even bothered. " I said to her, while looking at her face. Afterwards, I then let go of her dress and turned to leave however she suddenly grabbed onto the edge of my clothing.
" Let go... " I said to her slightly annoyed. But instead of letting go, she now had both hands wrapped around my waist.
" I,... I'm sorry Kim...........
" Forgive me Aria, I thought I could change you, but...... your nothing more but a rotten person....
She finally let go of me and I moved towards Lotte, looking at her straight in the eye, I spoke.
" Lotte, I may have an idea on what might have happened to your husband... ( shit! ) I'm going back to the labyrinth, to search for some clues ( damn it! what am I doing... ) please Lotte, until then could you stay here while i'm away. ( damn it! ) everythings going to be alright.... I promise.... ( Damn it!..... I lied,.....I lied to her,..... )
" Kim?.... whats going on?...... what happened to my husband?........ " Lotte had a panicked look while asking me this.
" I'm sorry, Lotte but.... i'm not sure what to tell you, .... for now just stay here......
" uhm.... okay, I'll stay.... " nodding her head in agreement and glancing at Aria, who at that time was sitting on the floor while hugging her knee's.
" Okay then, I'm going... " after taking one final look at Aria, I turned around and headed towards the door. My next destination would be the labyrinth, hopefully I could find some form of memento for Lotte, its the least I could after what we did.
I was lying on the floor, my face hurts, and my lips had blood trailing on the side. Looking at Kim as she walked out of the house I thought to myself...
" heh... guess I'm all alone again... why do others always have the tendency to leave just when I try to make things right.
My body suddenly felt weak, Cold, It was cold.... I slowly stood up, managing to support myself by using the chair infront of me. I took a few steps... my legs were shaking, and before I even noticed it, Tears were begining to escape from me.
" Are you alright? Aria? "
I looked towards the direction of the voice and I found Lotte staring back at my figure. Wearily, I answered her with a calm voice.
" I'm fine Lotte, you dont have to worry. "
" but.... your crying.... " she said.
" no... its okay, My cheeks just hurt from the slap earlier, It will be fine afterwards... I'm just gonna go outside for a while to get some fresh air. "
Going outside, I was immediately approached by Athen. Barm was at the side eating some hay.
" Mistress, did something happen? Kim went off with Centor, telling him it would be faster if she used him as a mount. after he agreed they just went away.
" Oh that... well I guess she's right, Centor is quick on his feet. they would reach the labyrinth in just two hours and get back to the third level in another thirty minutes... anyway, just continue on with what your doing. I'm just gonna go head on over to that tree, right there on top of the hill.
" Mistress..... what happened between you two? "
" Its fine Athen, even if she doesn't return... " walking past her, I didn't look back and darted off, dragging my feet.
I headed towards the top of the hill and leaned on the tree with my back. Staring at the vast sky while trying to hold back myself from crying...
" It was fun while it lasted, but it seems I was the only one enjoying it... what happened to me?.... was I always like this... a monster? A rotten person?.... If I ever get back to my own world, would things change for the better? hmmm.... no.... it wont, nothing will change... I was alone back there, and i'm still alone even in this one... maybe I should just return her to her father... I'm getting tired of playing house... I was surpised back then when the bandit knew how to use illusion magic, and pretended to be her father, if I was a bit late he would have used her as a hostage and at worst, she may have ended up dead. I didn't bother explaining it to her, thinking it would be better if she thought he was dead. That way she would have no choice but to follow me... I guess things dont work out that way...
" I'm finally 15 years old... I really wanted to spend it with people important to me... but in the end, It was just me playing pretend family... no parent's.... no friends.... all I have are just a bunch of talking birds... heh... i'm hopeless....
I take out my terminal, opened a bunch of files and folders, trying to find the mp4 file hidden in the bottom of my saved documents.
Aria: " there... I finally found it... its been another year... "
[ open file folder? ] yes/no....
[ play music file? ] accept/decline
~ happy birthday to you!
~ happy birthday to you!
~ from me to you,
~ a happy happy birthday!
~ today is the day of special smiles.
~ the moment that wishes come true.
~ the greatest gift is that we met.
~ come on, blow out the candles.
~ happy birthday to you!
~ happy birthday to you!
~ from me to you,
~ a happy happy birthday!
~ from me to you, ~ a happy happy birthday!
Aria: " happy birthday to me... happy happy birthday....... hik..snif......sniff..... ( sob )... uwaaah!....
as the song ended, so did my hope of ever becoming happy. this time the tears just kept on pouring from my eyes, I didn't bother holding them back anymore. I cried everything out, my despair, my pain and suffering. feeling my strength getting weaker, I closed my eyes and allowed myself to sleep.
Empire of Deneriv, human teritory, inside Cristovalria Castle.
A man was steadily walking towards the room at the end of the hallway. He was wearing full body armor, and his cape was dragging along the red carpet inside the glorious hall, decorated with vast amounts of art and all forms of metal armors were lined at each side. after walking for a good amount of time, he has finally reached the end of the hall. Infront of him was a golden door, roughly 30 feet high. As he approached it, the door began to creak and open, which revealed the room inside.
The room was filled with light that seem to be coming straight from the walls itself, giant pillars were supporting the ceiling that was made with gold and had intricate decorations carved into it, which depicted a battle that happened a long time ago in the history of the empire.
Looking straight ahead as he walked further towards the center of the room, He was greeted by the person who was currently on the seat of power.
" I see you have returned, my loyal servant. " the voice echoed in the entire throne room.
" yes, my master. I have finished my part in collecting the soul crystal from the labyrinth in the territory of the dark elves. "
" My time is quickly running out.... cough....cough..... "
" Master!!! " the man yelled.
" I'm almost at the end of my life...... for the continued glory, and prosperity of the empire I cannot allow it to end this way there fore in order for me ensure that the empire doesn't fall into ruin I must obtain Immortality, using the soul crystal's power. I have given my blood and my entire life on this one purpose... do not fail me. "
" I give you my word. Empress Victoria, the 18 sacred blades of the Empire of Deneriv and the might of our Army will not fail. We will trample everything that stands in our way. All for the Glory of the Empire!!! "
" Make haste... cough....cough..... burn down the other kingdoms that protect the seal, feed their souls to the cystals and let its essence add to my own. Do this, and let us laugh at the gods that sit in the heavens once we have obtained eternity. The magic circle has been long completed, all that is left is to obtain the necessary sacrifice..... for eternity and for the glory of the empire.... "
" for the glory of the Empire!!! " the man shouted
" Glory to the Empire!!! " the men surrounding the entirety of the throne room answered, Generals, Knights and Nobles in unison.
Empress Victoria: " Go forth, and lay waste upon all who stands against us.... Destroy them!!! Kill them All!!!
" chapter end....