Prologue: Ending, and Beginnings
Like every morning, my eyes opened to find a dark room. The world around me was indiscernible through the shade, however I could tell that there was another presence in the room with me. Paying it no mind, I stretched what muscles I could given my current position. It was at that moment however that the curtains keeping the blinding light at bay were cast open. Unfortunately, I could not cover my eyes, and try as I might, I could not lift my arms to block the assault on my retinas. As such, the best possible outcome was that I could squint my eyes into the dazzling light and watch helplessly as a shadowed figure walked up to my bedside. My eyes adjusted to the new lighting in the room quickly, allowing me to make out the other person’s features. Long brown hair running down her back and equally brown eyes that glow with a sort of kindness. I smiled when I felt the gentle aura emanating off her person, filling me with peace. That person was my mother.
My attention was drawn back to the current situation when I heard her speak in a language unfamiliar to me. This was nothing new, and I could tell by her soothing tone that nothing bad was going to happen. It was then that she lifted me into her arms and began to rock back and forth, cooing softly.
Ah, it is likely that it is important to note that I was a newborn child.
I suppose that it would be best to start at the very beginning.
What seems now like a very long time ago, I was a 30 year old office worker. I had lived a rather average life. Dull and unassuming for the most part. I finished school with middle of the line grades and got a job as a desk jockey right out of high school. Truly a waste.
Alright, I’ll be honest. My life was dull. The only highlight in my otherwise boring life was that I was particularly close to a certain woman. She was called the belle. A real beauty that stunned most everyone she met for the first time.
We had known one another in high school, and quickly became close upon entering the same company. My proximity and perceived intimacy with her was obviously a source of jealousy for some of my male counterparts. Anyway, she was the reason that my life was not a gray, lifeless mass. She brought out the light in an otherwise dull world. As such, I felt that I needed to make my move before someone could snatch that joy right out from under me.
It was Christmas, a time of joy and giving. We had known one another for years now, and the reason that no one in the office had yet made a move on this beauty was because they assumed that we were already a couple. That would not last forever though, so now was just time to make that dream into a reality. At the yearly office party, I found her standing in a separate room beside a window. The snow was falling just outside, setting the mood perfectly. Now was the time to strike.
“The truth is. . . I-i’ve always loved you!”
Ah yes, I still remember those words finally letting loose from the deepest part of my heart. I was so ready for her to jump into my arms so that I could truly begin my rose tinted life.
This however, was not the case.
Instead, after the initial look of shock passed her complexion, she didn’t look joyed. She didn’t look happy, embarrassed, or even flattered. Instead, her eyes were filled with panic.
“Look, you’re a nice guy and all. . . but I don’t feel that way about you. You. . . really aren’t my type.”
Despair. Dream shattering, soul crushing agony befell me then. But no, no it would be fine. At the worst, we could just go back to the way that it was before. Friends. She would invite me out drinking on Friday after a long week of work and we would complain together. Hang out once in a while. It was no big deal right? Maybe some day in the future, a chance would open itself to me once again.
Unfortunately, this was also very naive of me. After that event, she started to avoid me. When I spoke to her at the office, she would make up something she had to do, and when I invited her out, she would just give me some excuse. In the end, she spoke those words I will never forget. She approached me after work, and I could feel the hope inside me surge. This again however, would not go my way.
“Look, stop trying to hang around me so much. People will get the wrong idea about us. It was my mistake to get your hopes up before, but you can’t keep harassing me like this.”
And just like that, the light in my life had gone out. I was no longer welcome.
The days after that passed in a blur for a long time, and I spent much of my time remembering those days past. Thinking back to the signs that I must have missed. She had clearly flirted with me on many occasions, and often invited me out alone. It was already like we were dating, so how had I misunderstood to such an extent? Even the people around us had made the same mistake! How much a fool had I been?
This same train of thought that had run through my head again and again was doing so once more while I walked back home from work. It was lightly raining and I was crossing over a bridge at the time. Cars passed back and forth, kicking up the water on the ground, spraying around them. I stopped, and leaned over the edge, pondering but making no headway. The same words running through my mind endlessly. I do not know how, and I do not know why, but it was at that moment that everything for me would change forever.
“Why are you standing out here all alone in the rain?”
A soft voice called to me off to the side. Barely paying attention, I had cast my gaze over and froze. Before me was the most beautiful girl that I had ever seen. She couldn’t be more than 20 and her figure was perfect. Curves in all the right places and a luscious head of red hair that fell down her back. She wore a designer looking black coat and had a black umbrella. That sight was definitely something that would last in my mind forever more. At the time, all I could do was mumble and stutter some words out.
“U-uuuh, I-i’m just t-t-t-thinking. Nothing important!”
A slight smile quirked her lips upward just a tad, stunning me all the more.
“Oh? Is it that you are feeling dissatisfied with the world in general? Or is it on a more personal level?”
With every word, she took a step closer, until she was within just a few feet of me.
“Maybe it’s that the world around you feels dull and drab. Boring? Maybe you lost something you thought you had? Perhaps. . . . a woman?”
Every word cut deeper and deeper, directly into my soul. How had she known that? It was like she had watched a recording of my past. At that time, all I could do was stupidly nod at her, unable to even trust my voice to work. Before I could even react, she had closed the distance completely, and the rain had ceased to fall on me. Her umbrella covered us both. Her hand pressed against my chest. I wonder if she felt my heart pounding through my chest. It was then that she leaned into my ear and whispered.
“If this is all really such a waste, then why not just start again?”
Questions danced in my head that I really needed answered. Who was she? Why did she seem to know so much about me? What did she even mean by that?
Before those questions could be asked though, my lips were sealed. A soft, amazing sensation covered my mouth. Her lips were pressed against my own. To be honest, my brain was fried. An enticing aroma found it’s way to my nose. I felt like I was drowning in her. The shock didn’t even have time to register before the sensation faded and those same lips found their way to my ear.
“I hope that you really are the one to save us.”
Pain. My questions were cut short once again as pain shot through my body, originating in my gut. When I looked down, there was a blade of some sort driven into my body. Not a knife, or some sort of multi tool. It was a. . . dagger? Ornate and ceremonial in appearance. I gasped for air, but it wouldn’t come. What was this pain? I had never felt anything like it before. A river of red streamed out of my body and all the strength went out of my legs. My body crashed to the ground in a splash. My body was soaked to the bone, but I paid it no heed. No cars stopped. People passed by, seeming to not even notice this scene.
What had just happened? Why had I been stabbed?
I struggled weakly on the ground, but with every spasm and attempted movement, more blood flowed, and my limbs grew weaker with every passing second. The world began to fade. Where was she? Where was that woman? In the enveloping darkness, I saw her crouching in front of me. The droplets of rain no longer landed on my body, blocked by her umbrella. She was smiling softly at me. Like she was looking at a loved one. In the following moments, the feeling of the cold, wet pavement on my side faded to nothing.
Was this how it would really end? What had I even done with my life? The past three decades of my life flashed before me, revealing very little of interest. My parents. I hadn’t spoken to them in years. Thinking back, they had put up with so much from me. My lack of desire and no real drive. They took it all in stride, supporting me all along. I should have been better to them.
I should have done so many things. I may not have been the smartest in the class, but I could definitely have held my own with the upper portion of students. Maybe I could have even gone to a good university. Accomplished something. Or I could have joined clubs, played sports, anything! I had done nothing with my life! Why didn’t I do something? Anything? Why? Damn it all!
Truly if you looked back at my life you would think one phrase. Wasted potential.
. . .Why did I have to waste this life given to me?
Regret was really the only emotion that I had left as all feeling faded and the last of my lifeblood slipped from my veins. In the end, it all fell to black.
. . .
. . .
. . .
Why was I still here? I couldn’t feel, hear or see anything, but I could think. Was I in some sort of purgatory? I did exist though right? I think therefore I am?
While I was deep in my own sort of laughable existential crisis, I felt a sudden increase of pressure on my head.
Aaaaagh, that hurt. Why did the pressure just keep increasing? Was I in hell? Was I doomed to feel nothing but this pain for all of eternity?
Luckily for myself, that was not the case. After several agonizing minutes, there was a flash of light and a gust of cold air as I found myself delivered into the world.
There were people around me that I didn’t recognize. Who were they? An exhausted looking woman lying on a bed with a well built man holding onto her hand, a look of triumph on his face? Actually, who the hell was this old lady with her arms wrapped around me?
“Hey, what the hell is going on here?”
I tried to voice my complaints, but no sound came out. Instead, all I heard was a soft mewling. Who was that coming from?
Instead of my question being answered, the man spoke in a language completely incomprehensible to me, and I rapidly passed through the air before I found myself in his arms. I tried to struggle, but to no avail. The man bellowed in laughter and a gentle smile found its way onto his face while his massive hand stroked the top of my head. That moment was when it truly dawned on me. Words from the not so distant past.
“If this is all really such a waste, then why not just start again?”
I truly had been allowed to start again.
A/N: And there you have it~ Next chapter will be up Wednesday, please look forward to it!