Between rivers and mountains there lies a unique village with habitants. They sing every night before they go to bed and every morning before they go to do their chores. Kids play with wooden toys and go to school without paper or pencils. Instead they use their inner intelligence to learn more every day. Women stay at home to do domestic work: take care of their kids and prepare food for their husbands. Men work as farmers, own their own businesses or even serve as teachers who teach the kids basic elementary topics and the history of their village. The lessons about the village include how it was founded, who founded it and an explanation as to why they need to pray every day before they start the day. Although some men take on the role of teacher, the ones that are really qualified to be the teachers are selected from the day they are born because every natural-born teacher has a birthmark of a butterfly. The special people with this mark will ward the sacred temple under the village. They are the chosen ones, sent from God to keep the harmony in their village. THe only people in the village who have emotions are the chosen ones with the butterfly birthmark and their families. Those without the mark seem really happy because they don’t know pain and don’t have emotions. There are many rules to follow in the village.
One day, Mr. Anderson Williams, one of the chosen ones, went to the temple and told the sacred stone that is secretly hidden inside the temple that the day that everybody is afraid of is near. He confessed to the stone that the people in the village have the right to have feelings, emotions, and to make their own decisions. But the sacred stone couldn’t communicate with him and after a while Mr. Williams left the temple and went home without an answer. As Mr. Williams left the room of the temple where the sacred stone was located, the stone shone without him seeing its glow.
Weeks had passed, many changes had occurred, many diseases were being contracted in the village and the villagers didn't know how to cure them. The rainy days were almost all gone and winter was near, many animals had been found dead for unknown reasons. Mr. Williams called all the guardians of the temple and told them that they didn’t have too much time left. He was coming for them and he would not stop until he got what he wanted and therefore, they should be aware. Mr. Adams and his son said, “But we took away their emotions and even if they die they won’t feel anything because they don’t feel pain and lack emotions.” Mrs. Vita answered, “ But we all know that when that rock that we have been protected by breaks up, their feelings will come back.” All the elders remained quiet. Mr. Williams said, “ The change is coming and you all will pay for it.” and with a worried face he left and went home.
Mr. Williams made the difficult decision to tell his family what was really happening since they all can feel and share their worries. He began. “This village has a life cycle. The story goes that every 100 years the founder of the village will come and take revenge on those who offended him when he was alive. All the elders of the village know that the day will come but before he appears in the village many abnormal things will happen. For example, drinking water will turn to blood, the fields of flowers will suddenly die, the villagers will suffer from a lot of pain, sadness will be much stronger than love, everyone will doubt the choices they made and some will even give up on their own lives in order to save their beloved family and friends.” Mr Williams continued, “Mrs. O’Hen thinks that this winter will be the most devastating one and the monsters will come only on the rainiest and coldest days. On those days, many flowers of the garden will perish and vanish. There will be no daylight anymore and children will cry in the dark, the birds will sing sad songs and many people will die.” “But how can we prevent it?” Mr. Williams's daughter asked. Her dad explained the history with even greater detail. He explained that 25 years ago, the elders closed the temple because they were trying to prevent the same thing from happening again. They turned the temple into a “red castle” by closing and preventing the white stone from being broken. They knew that the stone had to be protected at all costs because the spirit that is inside of the white stone is the only hero that can save a small amount of people and bring them back to life. In addition to physically protecting the white stone, we have to keep it alive by taking away the villagers’ emotions so that the people and stone will be safe for generations. It has now been 50 years since the life cycle of the village was interrupted. It's been 50 years since a boy was trapped in the stone and it's been 50 years since we made a wrong choice.
The owner of the red castle is the owner of the stone and the one who is trapped in the white stone is his son, the son of the founder of the village. From what we know, he was killed and 5 years ago Mr. Sam saw a stone bleeding in front of our temple which was a signal to remind us of the tragedy that would occur this winter. So the leaders have decided that the only one that can help us now is the boy trapped in the stone and all our faith is in him and the five chosen ones that were born 25 years after the calamity and terror.
Mr. Williams then addressed his daughter directly, “One of the five chosen ones in that year is you, Phiona and your cousin Bradley so you guys must study hard and practice your cultivation at the temple starting tomorrow. There you will meet the other three chosen ones. However, don’t tell them your real last name and don’t make them your friends. Just be aware of every single move you guys make.
We don’t know the origin of the white stone or the origin of the founder of the village. We only know that the only one left is the boy in the white stone. If he can save us, we will all be thankful to God.”
Weeks passed. As each day passed, the terror increased.
December 29- Winter Begins
With the cold morning, wind blew, making echoes as if the wind was trying to say something. The coldness prevented people from leaving their homes. “There are dark clouds in the sky and heavy wind in the air as if there is somebody manipulating the weather,” said one of the old women.
“He is dead! He is dead!” another lady said out loud yelling and making all the people gather together in her house. All the habitants were watching the pale body with purple lips and tears of blood coming from the man’s eyes, lying on the floor, while he was holding between his hands a white flower from summer.
Suddenly one of the farmers was running from his farm towards the place of the dead man and as soon as he arrived he yelled, “My.. my.. my cows are bleeding and my dog’s crying blood!” This incident made all the elders from the temple worry. Mr. Williams said to his family, “He is here and we need to prevent the chaos for the future. Quickly call all the chosen ones to gather together in the temple. We will wait for the stone to open. I will go to the temple to talk with the elders.”
Phiona went to her uncle’s house looking for Bradley. Once they were together they headed toward the temple and on their way they found an unfamiliar person who did not belong to the village. While the man was trying to talk, he seemed to be in a lot of pain and full of regret. Between lips of agony the man said, “I have been so tortured for so long. Dying on the inside but smiling on the outside. Wishing to die but still keeping on living. “ How much irony in a person when dead is part of the life cycle”. After Phiona and Bradley saw the man dying, they left him and went on their way to the temple.
Once they arrived at the entrance of the temple they were waiting for the other three guys and as usual waited for the elders to call them in.
Later they were summoned to enter the temple. The elders gave them an explanation of what was happening and how they would help and contribute to the current situation. Suddenly there was this sound as if the earth was breaking up. The entire temple started to move, making the things fastened to the wall fall to the floor breaking into numerous pieces. While the entire temple was shaking, the speed of the wind got stronger making the trees move from one side to another as if they would break in half.
The elders headed to the secret room in the temple to see what was happening with the white stone and prevent it from falling down and breaking, but when they arrived at the room it was too late. The stone was already broken and a tall man, all in black, was standing in the middle of the room, wearing a scarlet mask and a black cape long enough to reach the floor. His face was covered with a hood. His back was to the door until they entered the room. Quietly, he turned around slowly. Taking off his hood, showing his splendid hair color covered with diamonds and through the holes in his scarlet mask his light blue eyes.
Alfred, one of the elders approached him, saying to him, “The day has come and YOU are the only hope. You won't be alone. Your followers are here. Those five guys in there will help and serve you all the time.” The five chosen ones added, “We pledge our oath to you and swear to heaven that we will always be by your side in good and bad times. We will overcome all together. This tragedy that will come to your shoulders, share your burden with us and being able to help is our honor. We are Phiona,Nolen , Isabella, Bradley and Daegan.” “What’s your name?” Mr. Williams asked the hooded figure. “Zayn, like your last son’s name who died a while ago,” answered the guy. Mr. Williams reacted in a very sad and weird way and the only thing he could say was “It's a good name isn’t it?” Upon hearing this, Phiona was confused because she didn’t know about that brother. From what she knew, she only had two sisters and one younger brother. Zayn said, “Everyone besides the five chosen ones can leave. The storm will soon stop. The chosen ones will pass the night here.”
Once the others left Zayn addressed the five, “From today on you will not do anything without my consent. You will follow my orders and do not go against my actions for the future since we know that the only way to stop this calamity is to accept the fate sent by God. Respect my dead father’s last words on taking revenge in this village and it will be so.” Since Phiona and Bradley didn’t help the man dying on their way to the temple there would be more people dying from sadness and confusion, especially since the habitants have their emotions back. Zayn continued, “Although everything seems to be normal, they will suffer what I suffered being trapped in this rock. As the elders said that they need my help and I am the only one that can help them, let's wait for an important guest to come here and have a talk.”
Phiona, nervous that she and Bradley didn’t do the right thing, said, “But the man was already dying and we couldn’t do anything for him. Who is coming?” Bradley added, “Besides he is not from our village and he does not form part of our land. He was more dead than alive.” Zayn turned to Daegan, “What do you think about it Daegan?” Daegan answered, “We all don’t belong to this village, and at the same time we do belong here since we were born here!” Another of the five, Isabella, asked, “Zayn, why does your father want to kill the people in the village? What did the ancestors do that was so bad that we have to still pay their debt now?” Zayn answered, “We all accept our destiny but when we don’t follow the rules, punishment needs to occur. Sometimes we have to pay for them in the future, present or in another life. If we don’t experience the consequences, our blood relatives must do it for us.” Zayn elaborated, “My father at that time was trying to help the village from going into chaos and suffer at the hands of the devil. Since this land didn’t belong to us and we just claimed it for ourselves. So he decided to sacrifice himself to save his people and bring them happiness. At that time my mother was carrying me in her arms. I was 3 years old, when suddenly a fire appeared in front of our gate and people started to blame my family as the cause of the bad luck of the village so then they tried to kill all my descendents. It was then that my father decided to use black magic to take revenge on those who betrayed him, becoming a monster himself. He couldn’t control himself and was consumed by the black magic turning himself more monster than human, with red eyes, long, gray hair, purple lips and stronger than ever.” Another of the five, Nolen, asked, “How did you end up trapped in the white stone?” Zayn replied, “Since my father founded the village, he knew everything about the village. Under the house where we used to live there was a tunnel that led to this temple. This tunnel still exists today. At that time, my father’s brother helped my mom escape through the tunnel and brought her to the temple. At that critical moment when we arrived at the temple, the devil appeared in front of us, looking for his reward and payment from my father. The devil suddenly decided that my father’s payment would be his child. I was then trapped in the white stone.” Zayn added, “In order to torture my father and make him realize that people do not appreciate what he did, the devil gave me black magic so I wouldn’t die but rather live forever in the white stone as punishment. Still my father gave up his soul to him and asked for revenge, but something tells me that he is alive and he is already here in this solace, somewhere. As a result of my father’s mistakes and to ensure that they do not continue to curse the village, I am here to make the people that are disgusting, ungrateful, selfish, egoistical.evil as evil and bad as his spirit and soul to pay for what they did. You guys will help me more now than ever since 25 years ago they prevented me from coming out and went against the curse of nature or rather, the curse of revenge.” Zayn turned to Mr. Williams, Thanks a lot. I hope you won regret helping me this time. I hope you are grateful for my father, whether he is alive or dead, who saved you and took care of you as if you were his brother.”
Suddenly a man dressed all in white entered the room. With a quick glance he decided to take Phiona with him. Zayn granted him that permission and they left. Mr. Williams, the four remaining chosen ones and Zayn started to plan a way to save the women and children peacefully without regret or deception.
Once again Phiona was confused and didn’t know where she was going, but after a while she noticed that they were going to Phiona’s house. The white figure addressed Phiona saying, “I am your brother and from now on you will call me Tristan. Since you are my sister, you are part of the legacy. Your duty is to help Zayn with his plan before it's too late. One more thing, you will not let anybody know it, but we are connected to him by blood!” “Wait, but how?” Phiona asked. Tristan answered, “He is your brother. You were born 25 years ago from his blood and the devil’s magic at the same time. During the process in which he was being trapped your mother gave his blood. It was then when you and I were born by magic. But we were separated. I was raised by myself under Zyan’ś guidance all this time. You were sent to Mr. Williams.” As the time passed, they spoke about what happened and Phiona decided to help them. Phiona said, “It's getting late! We need to go back to the temple and make our plan of action.”
When they arrived at the temple the others were sleeping as if Zayn used magic to keep them paralized because it looked as if they were dead, lying on the beds. Mr. Williams knew what was going on and alerted the elders with the news that Zyan's father was not dead.
D Day came as Phiona and Zayn were using their blood to bring a plague to the village on the day that Zayn’s father decided to show himself. Tristan was using his blood to manipulate the weather and look for a way to save the people with the purest hearts and souls. The temple was turning red, the devil appeared, the people were dying inside themselves. Some of them were killing themselves because of the blame upon their shoulders and their guilt because now that they remember their actions and how bad some of them were before their emotions were taken away, it was making them regretful. Some others started to kill each other either because they went crazy or they decided to die that way. It had been two weeks since Zayn woke up and so many people had already died! On that rainy day and cold day, the unknown creature walked through the town dressed all in red heading to the temple. As soon as he entered the temple, the rain stopped and the sky turned black. Then after 30 minutes of being in the temple, he came back out in the direction of the village. The habitants that were watching him walk towards the center of the village were scared, and started to yell out in loud, terrified voices, “The monster is here!” running inside their houses.
The creature that was no longer human was killing people as he passed them with no remorse. He threw their dead bodies aside as if they were nothing but trash. Suddenly Zayn appeared in front of him and decided to kill him since he was no longer his father, but a monster without soul. They started to fight, both of them received injuries. At that moment, Phiona decided to use her blood to start the plague by reading the spell.
For about two weeks, the people were dying, the plague was going after all the people. No pestilence had been so fatal or so hideous. The village was bathed in horrible, redness of the blood from all the ones who had died. All the leaders were already dead and about 20 people were locked up in the temple, while, in the meantime, Zayn was still fighting with his father. Zayn was feeling tired and weak by the look on his face. While they were fighting, Zyan’ś father said to him that he would not be able to kill him and if he did, he would come back to life. At that moment, Zayn stuck the sword into his father’ś body and then cut his head. As his father’s head fell to the floor, Zayn fell to the floor in tears as his father’s body vanished into thin air. As he looked around there was no point in staying in a village that no longer existed. All the people were already dead and the only ones by his side were Phiona, Tristan and the four other chosen ones. At the entrance to the temple, Mr. Williams was gasping for air and uttered his final words, “Blood is its avatar and its seal. Blood needs to be paid with more Blood. He will come back!”
The chosen ones took the people that were locked in the temple and let them help clean the village while using specific medicine to prevent themselves from getting infected by the disease that killed their fellow villagers.
After the small village was cleaned, Zayn decided to leave the village. Phiona and Tristan went with him to look for a new journey in life. As they traveled, Zayn said to them, “The only way to live sensibly in this world is without principles.” Phiona added, “ We all die more times than I can count.” Tristan concluded, “Death is not a torment but the end of pain.”
Life is not always about happy things or full of sadness. Life and death are connected. If you do good, you go to heaven where everyone would like to go and if not, you don’t enter the pearly gates. We have no control of others’ lives and their decisions. We cannot choose for others. They create their own paths: good or bad and live their own lives with no regrets.
While they were walking to their new lives, on their way they found a strange man in an ominous voice that said to them, “This is not the end. Something else awaits. You will know when the day comes!”
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