Dyon silently and gently held the back of Little Lyla's head, making sure that even should she wake up, that she would never see this sight.
The kids noticed Dyon's arrival but were too distraught to move. None of the other caretakers were in sight… it was as though they had never existed.
Minutes passed by as Dyon burned this scene into his mind.
Taking a deep breath, and ignoring the consequences, he sent Ri into his spatial ring along with Little Lyla.
With Little Black by his side, he slowly walked to the group of children.
Taking a look at the children, Dyon's heart ached. Their faces were covered in soot and tears. It was a heart rending sight.
Kneeling down, Dyon patted the head of a boy sitting near the edge of the huddled group. The poor boy's face had snot running down it as he quietly sniffled, but Dyon's touch seemed to be the light of his day.
Looking up with his big black eyes, the boy cried, "Big brother, are you going to leave us too?"
The words of the boy nearly made the tears Dyon had only just managed to stop resurface again, "of course not, Nopos. I wouldn't leave any of you."
"big brother, y-you remember my name?"
Dyon smiled gently, "of course I do," then Dyon began pointing to each child, quietly speaking their names.
"Onas.. Nym… Ruith… Ryul…. Soora… Talila…. Nuala…. Aurae…."
Dyon rattled off every single one of their names. Many of these children didn't even have last names to them, much like Little Lyla. Dyon's heart was pained by the fact this was the best he could do to give these kids a little warmth in their lives.
With every name he said, another light of glistening admiration surfaced in the eyes of those kids.
With every name he spoke, tears of warmth replaced the cold and dried streaks of salt and dread that had once covered their faces.
With every name he whispered, he added another child to his family.
In the end Dyon kneeled before them and bowed his head. He had promised to never do this for anyone other than his master. In fact, in the western part of the world he originated from in the human mortal realm, bowing and kneeling was seen as nothing but a form of disgrace. But, that was exactly how Dyon felt now. He had let these kids down. Whether that be because of his arrogance, or because he didn't build their defenses well enough, was irrelevant to him. The mere fact he had allowed such innocent souls to experience something like this was something he would never forgive himself for.
The kids shivered watching Dyon's actions. But, his next words were ones they would never forget.
"Sorry is not enough for what I've put you all through," Dyon buried his forehead firmly into the ground, "but, I promise with everything in me, that from this day forward, I won't allow anyone to treat you like this again. You'll live your lives as children should. You'll laugh and smile. You'll only cry tears of happiness and maybe frustration… but never. Never again will they be tears of pain."
Just as Dyon finished, he felt a small hand on his shoulder. He looked up to find Nopos looking at him with tears streaking down his small face.
"it's not your fault, big brother. They were bad people… very bad people… they even tortured Ms. Everdeen to find where sister Lyla was hiding… in the end, only she fought for us. Everyone else ran… now we have you big brother. You're willing to remember our names and you're willing to kneel for us. You will always be our big brother."
Dyon's words caught in his throat, he hugged the little boy, and every child after. Silently sending them and Little Black into the spatial world.
Soon, he was all that was left.
Silently, Dyon walked to the tree Ms. Everdeen hung from, gently taking her down.
Dyon slowly and diligently repaired the wounds on the beautiful old lady's skin. Taking his time to repair her grey eyes and her disarrayed hair. Dyon knew this would never revive her, but he wasn't willing for her to have any blemishes even in death.
Afterwards, Dyon created a beautiful dress for her. An elegant and conservative silver covered Ms. Everdeen's body.
Slowly closing her eyes for the last time, Dyon smiled gently, "you truly are beautiful Ms. Everdeen. May you rest in peace."
Dyon's crystal will whirred to life as he created endless flowers, small birds, and butterflies, gently layering Ms. Everdeen's crystalline coffin with them.
She looked peaceful. Exactly like someone who fought to the end for what they believed in.
Her arms were crossed, and the countless crystallized flowers and elegant animals graced her in death.
Dyon took a deep breath, "when the time is right, I'll complete your perfect burial. The ones who did this to you will kneel before you in repentance. Forever."
With that thought, Dyon took out a new spatial ring… one that he would reserve for Ms. Everdeen.
Silently putting her away, Dyon closed his eyes.
It was still the early morning. Birds chirped, and the leaves of the forest rustled in the wind. But, aside from this, there was nothing but an eerie quiet.
The village that had once had many residents was empty. They had most likely fled in the midst of the disaster, not bothering to care for already parentless children.
Hours went by with Dyon in this state, but he still wasn't willing to move. He smelt the foul manure coming from the once vibrant orphanage. He felt the trembling in his heart as it continued to fiercely pound. He felt the dripping blood from clenched hands he wasn't willing to relax.
Soon, it was already the next morning.
Suddenly, Dyon opened his eyes, a dense fire burning within them.
Black flames danced across Dyon's face, erasing all traces of the tears he had ever shed.
His eyes were decidedly darker, dimming from their hazel-green, to a murky and dark brown.
With a wave of his hand, the black flames engulfed the orphanage. Not even sparing the trees and village around it.
Dyon stood within, untouched. His face without emotion and his heart calm as a dark and gloomy lake.
for those paying attention, it seems like Dyon's finally decided to tap into the fire affinity his demon qilin essence blood gives him... but black flames specifically are a special case as you'll all see...
I really hated writing these chapters, but I think it was important to not only remind you all but to also remind Dyon that just because you have problems we've introduced for the future, if you don't focus on the here and now, you'll lose everything you were working hard for in the first place. This isn't just a good lesson for Dyon, but a good lesson for everyone too! The jury is still out on if Dyon will be able to handle this trial well, but I hope that in all of our lives, we do better than he's about to do... cause in his defense, he's influenced by demon blood, while we're fully human, haha
I can't say I hope you enjoyed, but! I hope it was interesting
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