Judith Payne

Light shadows have long been the rulers of the shadow realm. They protect it from all beings of darkness and keep the balance within. This story follows a light shadow who was born a half-dark elf as she discovers her true nature and what she can offer the realm.

Фентези Темная фантазия 18+.

#siblings #weaktostrong #shadowrealm #multiplelives
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Chapter One

Ariel laid in the middle of a near perfect clearing. The wind blew the grass that tickled her. It was as if the wind and grass had teamed up to remind her that there was such a thing as laughter. The tall trees surrounding the clearing were her guardians. They protected her from most of her outside worries. Finally, the full moon and stars provided her light in her darkness. While in the clearing, she could feel safe again. She could see her mother again.

Her mother had the softest long brown hair that came down to just below the small of her back. Her dark brown eyes seemed to see into her soul to find anything that was bothering her. Her gentle touch could sooth any pain. Her voice was so gentle and healing that all of her worries would fade away.

Ariel missed her mother dearly, but it had been years since she left. She was called into action against the beings of darkness, and it appeared she was never coming back. Without confirmation, there was no telling what had happened, though. She could have died or been captured. Both options were horrible. The few light shadows who escaped the prisons told stories worse than death itself.

"Ariel!" her step-father, Eric, boomed drunkenly, breaking into her thoughts. "Get in this house, NOW!"

Ariel groaned as she stood up. Her shoulder still hurt from the last time he had caught her. She wished her mother would make it back safely. The longer she was gone, the worse things became.

She had never been accepted by anyone in the village, but they had mostly just whispered about her being different. Since her mother had left, the village had gotten loud, and Eric's uncaring nature had turned violent. She tried to ignore the village and stay away from Eric, but it was getting harder.

Ariel crossed into the woods, feeling the familiar sense of dread settle deep in her skin. She almost felt like a zombie as she passed the trees. She actually couldn't tell if she was just on autopilot or if she was moving her own feet. After a minute of walking, she decided that she was on autopilot because she really didn't want to go back to that horrible so-called home.

She was only going back because of her half brothers, Chris and Daniel. If she knew they were actually safe, she would run. However, she was the oldest, and she felt like it was her responsibility to keep them safe. Eric had never hurt them, but he knew they loved her and that they knew where the clearing was. She couldn't risk him hurting them to find out where she was.

Eric did not know where the clearing was because their mother had only ever brought Ariel and her brothers out there. It was their safe place to escape when things got hard. Even though Eric had accepted his own sons, the rest of the village hadn't. They whispered about them as well because their sister was considered a freak.

It was tolerated if a light shadow was half human like her brothers. However, Ariel was half dark elf. They refused to believe that she would not risk turning evil by any means. She even refused to use any dark elf powers if she ever found them. No matter what she said, the hate still poured out of the village.

"Ow!" Ariel yelped when she walked directly into a downed tree.

She rubbed her shins and looked back in the direction of the clearing. It seemed to be calling her back. It promised her safety from everything. She was so tempted that she caught herself taking a couple of steps back. She wanted so desperately to be free that it was hard to ignore the call.

Ariel shook her head. She could not abandon her brothers. They would worry about her even if Eric left them alone. Also, they were all that she had left after her mother was sent away. They tried to be there for her. They would sit with her on bad nights. They even tried to stop the beatings. However, Ariel told them to stop after Eric threatened them. It was bad enough that the village wouldn't accept them because of her, she wouldn't be the reason their father hurt them as well.

She turned back and climbed over the tree. She had to face Eric. She could not just run away. A new determination was starting in her chest as all of these thoughts went through her head. It was time she stood up to Eric. It was clear that her mother couldn't save her. She had to save herself.

Her pace quickened at the thought of finally putting an end to the beatings. The trees almost became a blur as she reached inward for her power. She let the energy fill her as she tried to figure out how to use it.

She could manipulate the energy around her. However, she had never tried to do more than make a slight breeze. She felt like it was her light shadow power, and it should have been alright for her to use. However, the rest of the village swore that it was a dark elf power. They thought that she was just working with nature and wouldn't listen when she tried to say that she could feel all kinds of energy, not just nature. She knew her mother could have probably told her more, but she had already been sent away before she could find the power. So, she just didn't work with it for fear that the rest of them were right.

That didn't matter to her anymore though. She was eighteen already. She was tired of being pushed around. She certainly wasn't a punching bag. She wasn't going to stand around being beaten any longer. It was time to stand up for herself.

Before long, she could see the lights from the house. The trees started to thin as she grew even closer. As she stepped out of the tree line, she stumbled to a halt. Something felt really wrong. The normal darkness was even thicker around the house than normal.

She saw the same two-story house she had called home since she was an infant. The white panels were turning yellow. The black shingles were turning gray. The windows were fogging, and one of the attic windows was cracking. Everything was just the same as the day before, but the energy was different. Eric's drunken rage was worse than ever before. She could also feel a bit of fear though.

Her blood started to boil when she realized that the fear was coming from her brothers. Daniel was only fifteen. He was still learning his power and struggled to use it at all. Chris was sixteen. He knew his power but also wasn't very good with it yet. If Eric came after them, there was a chance that they could get hurt. Eric might have been human, but he was strong. He could easily overpower them if they couldn't use their powers.

She sprinted across the yard with determination singing through her. She threw open the door and came to a quick halt again. She was met with the largest death trap Eric could have possibly built. Every piece of furniture was smashed and tossed into the middle of the room. Wood and glass filled the trap, and the couch was tipped upside down behind the pile to expose its metal bits.

She shook the ice from her limbs while trying to find her brothers. She found Daniel in a fetal position against the far wall. He was also trying to cover his eyes with his shaggy blond hair. Next, she found Chris slumped on the stairs right beside Daniel. She tried to run to them, but Eric cut her off. He stepped in front of her growling, "Glad you finally decided to join us."

Ariel glared at him as the air spun around her. "Enough of this Eric! They are your sons. How could you do this?"

"If you hadn't taken so long. I wouldn't have needed to find you. It's not my fault they wouldn't tell me," he said, shrugging as if it was obvious. Ariel growled as the wind picked up. Eric just laughed. "Do you really think I'm afraid of your little breeze?"

He leaped forward. She tried to block him, but he got around it, landing his hit to her stomach. She gasped and doubled over while trying to get air to her lungs. Before she knew it, Eric picked her up by her throat.

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Chris and Daniel had started charging forward. Eric just batted them to the side before he pinned her to the wall. He closed his hand even tighter around her throat and started repeatedly punching her side. She was already barely getting air, and it wasn't enough. Her vision blurred, and she absently wondered if she would pass out before he could break her ribs.

She wouldn't go out like that though. She used a burst of energy to send a rush of wind at him. He stumbled just enough for Chris to tackle and pin him before shouting, "Run!"

Ariel tried to stand as she sucked in air, but her legs gave out. She tried again, this time leaning on the wall. She was almost up when her arm gave out. She lost her balance and fell hard resulting in a small scream of pain.

"Dan, help her," Chris said as he continued to struggle to keep Eric down. "I'm not sure how long I can hold him down."

Daniel ran to her and scooped her into his arms. She shrieked at the sudden jolt. "I'm sorry," he said when she shrieked again as he struggled to open the door.

He ran down the four stairs and across the yard. He turned back to look at the house just in time to see that Eric was throwing Chris down the four wooden stairs. "Don't come back!" he yelled as he slammed the front door.

13 марта 2024 г. 1:45 0 Отчет Добавить Подписаться
Прочтите следующую главу Chapter Two


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