I have been here for over a week, lying in a puddle of inky black nothingness. My body aches. My mind begs for an end. My stomach begs for something to enter it, my mouth wishes to taste food or drink, but I have denied myself both, despite them being offered to me by an unknown party. Not that it matters, considering that everything I have been given has been heavily drugged.
I was dead. Now I am alive.
Clearly this is how anyone would react. I was finally at peace with myself. I could close my eyes and sleep forever. Even as a defender of Kinigi, it wouldn’t be me, just the Vethic aspects of my soul. The rest of me would no longer exist, floating forever in the depths of my new Vethic mind. That would have been an acceptable fate. But no, the universe decided that I wasn’t allowed to have any sort of peace. Even Death rejected me, telling me it wasn’t time yet.
So here I am, rotting away in this pitch black cell, starving myself to death. I don’t want to be here. Death will have to accept me eventually. And it can’t send me back here if my body is decaying, can it?
Still, the pain is excruciating. Like my insides are burning.
A light floods the room. I shut my eyes, the pain already unbearable. But it isn’t the light from the small hatch, blocked by unwanted and spoiled food. A door has opened up and something has entered. All I can do is groan, I am too weak to put up a fight.
“Thank the shadows I found you…”
My eyes are still closed. I can’t face the light. Whoever this is, they pick me up, throwing me over their shoulder. I can feel their body, the rubbery skin and hard, almost plastic-like armour of a Rethan. But there are wings too.
“Come on, stay with me, Kayel. Stay with me.”
I don’t want to. I just want to sleep. Their voice though, it sounds familiar. Like they have done something drastic since I last heard them speak. Still, their words are persuasive. Maybe I will just sleep, rather than die. The pain will go away no matter what.
Their grip around my chest and legs tightens as we leave the room. I refuse to open my eyes at all, feeling the light creeping in from every angle. My saviour, or perhaps captor, starts making heavy steps forward, only to abruptly stop.
“Give him back.”
This voice, I do not recognise at all.
“GIVE HIM BACK!”
Things quickly escalate. One hand lets go of me as we both move backwards, and I can feel a familiar dark energy fill the room. I realise who my saviour/captor is.
“You want me to give him to you? With your sick plans?” Psivee-En shouts, holding me more delicately now.
“You are the one who created that god-killing monster. I need him to create something to destroy your evil spawn!”
“And how do you plan on doing that? By taking the same unholy route I mistakenly took? That I have spent the last twenty four years trying to repent for?”
“If need be, yes.”
Despite my weakness, I suddenly find the strength to stand on my own and open my eyes. Psivee-En puts me down and I stare down my new enemy. He is identical to Psivee-En in every way, apart from the fact that he is white and gold, rather than Psivee-En’s mixture of black and red. Whatever the fuck this Rethan is, he seems to be of the impression that my kid is evil.
“How dare you speak of my kid that way!” I bellow. I have no idea where this strength is coming from. “And how DARE you suggest harming me to create your own twisted nightmare!”
Psivee-En knows me. He steps back, giving me space. I bring my hands together and mutter those most useful words, before shouting out against my enemy. The force from the blast knocks me over, but sends the Rethan flying through several walls.
“I am so, so sorry!” Psivee-En immediately starts explaining. “I heard you had died. I witnessed your funeral. I went the next day to place a parting gift but your grave had been defiled. I tracked you down to here, via the connection we shared. Ayvee-En wanted to use you. He wanted to make you have another child and use that child to kill all your children, not just Arkay. Knowing him, he would have killed you again once he was done with you. Or worse, kept you as a slave.”
I blink in confusion. “W-why?”
Psivee-En looks down. He doesn’t know. He seems different. Not the monster that tore me apart, but not the tattered, broken wreck I forgave. Someone else.
“We must go, before he wakes up. I have a safe place, with a proper bed, proper food, proper water. If you are willing.”
I sigh. I hurt all over and want to sleep. But my desire to die has… faded. It’s not what Veeyel would have wanted.
“Fine. Let’s go.”