Back, Into The Light (Part 1)
I’ve wanted to try writing fantasy again, and I’ve also wanted to write a serialized story. So here it is, my serialized fantasy story! Any feedback is greatly appreciated. Without further ado, onto Part 1!
Back, Into The Light (Part 1)
“Tell me a secret. Something you’ve never told anyone.” Even when he whispered, the gravelly heaviness of Law’s voice filled the room. He and Maki were laying in the bed, resting. The pain in Maki’s abdomen had finally subsided, but the cramps left her drained. She was content to lay there in silence until tomorrow. Law wouldn’t have it. He was a talker.
She thought for a moment. There were too many secrets to choose from. Past lives and old friends clouded her mind with a thousand insignificant and monumental memories. She’d never confessed to blaming her sister for not locking the front door the night that their dog ran away. Their mother favored Maki openly, and her word was as good as gold. Juva received no dinner as punishment. Juva and her mother were both long dead, but Maki could still imagine how hungry Juva must have been as she stood in the corner, watching them eat roasted chicken.
Or she could tell him how she got her favorite dress. It was a burgundy gown which stopped just above her ankles. Gold trim traced the collar and snaked down the left sleeve, ending in three tassels which hung from the wrist. The man who stole it for her told her that the rings had a special meaning, but she’d forgotten what it was almost as fast as she’d forgotten his name. He was a poor lover and an excellent thief, and she needed the latter skills more than the former before she’d met Law.
She could tell him about the boy from Ilna. No, she thought as she touched her own protruding belly. That secret never happened. She’d convinced herself that nothing so cruel could happen to a child, mostly to convince herself that nothing so cruel could happen to her child someday.
“I don’t want to,” she said. “My secrets aren’t youthful mistakes or embarrassing stories. I keep my secrets because they hurt too much to speak out loud.”
“Are you afraid that I would judge you?”
Law sat up in the bed, staring straight ahead. He placed a warm hand on Maki’s shoulder, then moved slowly to stroke her curly hair. “I know enough about you to know that your secrets are darker than most. But there’s so much I don’t know about you. I want to learn, and I want to carry some of those burdens for you, if you’ll let me.”
Maki turned to look at Law. She’d feared his kind for most of her childhood. The Calans were the go-to boogeymen for parents who wanted to scare their children into obedience. Her mother had used stories about Calans liberally. There was the purple beast with razor sharp hooks at the end of his hands that came for little girls who didn’t eat all of their dinner. A three-meter tall, fire breathing Calan would snatch her out of bed in the middle of the night if she wasn’t kind to her sister. Most terrifying was Boe, the only Calan monster her mother gave a name to. No one knew what he looked like, she said. He would appear out of the shadows and take bad children to The Darkness.
Law didn’t resemble any of those terrible stories. He looked more like a man than a monster. His black fur was short and well groomed, shimmering in the low light of the afternoon. His ears were atop his head, pointed and canine-like, twitching constantly at the slightest noise as if independent of the rest of his body. Maki’s mother was right about their height though. Law was easily over two meter tall, though not quite the three meters her mother had invented to frighten her. His chest was broad and the muscles of his back rippled beneath his fur. His eyes were like superheated coal, blacker than night and red hot when he wanted them to be. She looked at him, this Calan, who treated her better than any human had. He returned her gaze, and it was soft and warm, like him. It made her want to tell him the most painful secret she had, the one which undid everything she’d wanted in her life before, and that she’d finally found with him. The father of her unborn child needed to know.
“I’m immortal,” she said finally.