In the hallway were at least a dozen Palace Guards, Ronin, the Queen, Song, and her parents. The King stood in the middle of the group. His eyes moved to the basin and there was no stopping him next. A roar slice through the air. A chill ran down my back. The wind whipped through the room. Raiden pushed me to General Takashi who had his sword drawn. Aika, although not carrying any weapons, flanked the other side.
“Seize them.” The King ordered, his voice dropping dangerously low.
Palace Guards charged. General Takashi pushed me behind him and clashed his swords with the first Palace Guards.
The King flashed before Raiden and gripped his throat. Lifting him in the air, his eyes glowed red. His teeth lengthened into sharp canines. His face molding into something monstrous.
“You are despicable!” He scorned, flashing his canines at Raiden. “You are my blood, but I will kill you today for your insolence.”
The King pummeled Raiden in the face. His head whipped back before Raiden countered his next blow, sending the King flying back. He crashed into the centerpiece, snapping the marble piece in half. Disappearing, he reappeared in front of Raiden and the two began a dangerous game of fighting.
General Takashi plunged his sword into one Guard’s body before turning it and swiftly twisted his body so that the sword severed the spine. The Palace Guard died instantly. Another charged at General Takashi. He placed one foot on the dead Palace Guard’s stomach and kicked hard to release the sword from its body. He skillfully deflected the charging blow with his own sword.
My eyes were on Raiden. The King was able to get through Raiden’s defenses and punched Raiden in the stomach. He went flying to the altar, breaking the marble flooring.
A slow red light glowed in the King’s hand. It grew as the second passed. Raising his hand he threw the ball of fiery glow at Raiden. It hit him square in the chest. Raiden’s body trembled in pain. He coughed up blood. The King didn’t waste another second. He walked up the steps of the altar towards me.
“You!” He accuses. His eyes zoned in on me.
General Takashi lost his balance when he saw that the King was coming from me. It gave the Palace Guard the opportunity to attack. He barely deflected the blow.
Raiden disappeared and appeared between the King and me. In Raiden’s palm was a blue light. The King’s eyes fell on it before a snarl left his lips.
“Stay away from her,” Raiden warned, his body swayed slightly before he threw the blue orb of light at the King. The King blinked in surprise. His body flew back and hit a pillar. It cracked under his weight. He, too, coughed up blood.
The King flashed before Raiden and grabbed him by the collar, throwing him across the room. A loud crash can be heard. He grabbed onto my throat and squeezed hard.
“You! You will die today.” He threatened. I felt claws. They dug into the skin of my neck and I felt blood seeped from my wounds. I scratched and kicked him, but it didn’t do anything. General Takashi killed the last guard and made a move for me, but Ronin was quicker.
My vision blurred from lack of air. From underneath my eyelashes, I can see the King lifting his free hand. Claws lengthened, and I knew he was going to plunge it into me, rip my heart out and end my weak existence in this world. I thought about my life. My family. Raiden. Tears streamed down my cheek and I did everything I could to be released by him.
Slowly, everything around me started to disappear. Voices were becoming distant like I was in a bubble. My peripheral vision cloud with darkness. My body became weak.
If this is my fate, I am glad that I at least got to experience love, friendship, and family. I have no regrets. I can’t have any because everything was meant to be.
Bright red light pierced the darkness that was surrounding my vision. Loud gasps can be heard. A dangerous and ominously loud roar ranged in my ears.
It sounded like a beast.
One that can’t be contained.
One that can’t be controlled.
The floor shook. It felt like the building was falling to the ground. I can hear the breaking of rocks and ceilings. Another roar silenced the screams of people.
My body was flung back and I hit the wall. Two guards appeared on my side and gripped my arms. Slowly, I lifted my dizzy vision to the beast before me.
It was magnificent and I knew who it was immediately. The King made a quick move to detain Raiden. His powers streamed out of his palms like red lights and wrapped around Raiden’s towering form. The beast growled and opened his jaw. His hands swiping out and slammed several people back against a wall. Underneath his weight, the floor cracked.
The King’s detainment didn’t last long. It broke, and Raiden swung his head in his father’s direction. The beast seemed to not recognize his own father. His eyes were red and threatening. He took a step toward him.
“Raiden!” Ronin’s voice brought the beast attention to him.
My eyes snapped to Ronin who held a woman in his arms. The woman looked up at the beast, unafraid. Her hands dug into Ronin’s arm that was around her throat. A dagger hovered over the woman’s heart held by Ronin. A few guards came running in. Streams of glowing light released from their palms as they tried to restrain Raiden’s beast.
Raiden roared and took a few steps towards Ronin, fighting against the restraints. The marble floor cracked some more underneath the beast’s weight. He growled and snarled, his eyes focused on Ronin. He killed and crushed anyone that was in the path, uncaring. One of the Guards twisted my arms behind me to stop me from struggling.
I whimpered at the piercing pain. The sound seemed to have drawn the beast’s eyes to me.
Our eyes met and it blinked.
For a second, it stopped it advances and just stared at me.
“I command you to change back or I will kill your mother in front of your eyes.” Ronin brought his attention back to his mother. Raiden’s beastly eyes whipped to Ronin. He fought against the restraints. The beast was unwilling almost like he didn’t understand what was going on.
The King appeared behind me. He held the dragon dagger that Raiden and I have used earlier for the sacrament ceremony in his hands. He pressed it to my throat.
“Raiden!” He roared for his son’s attention.
Raiden’s head snapped back toward the authoritative voice. He roared and stomped his feet. The beast did not like to be ordered.
“Change back or they both die!” He commanded.
Raiden stopped his assault. His eyes landing on me. Again, time stopped and then it happened.
The ropes of containments wrapped around his human body. His chest, arms, and legs were tied. His eyes landed on me. Another Guard hurried over and threw chains on Raiden’s body. The minute it touched his skin, they lit red. Raiden roared and fell to his knee. Pain shook his body terribly.
“Stop!” I shouted, struggling out of my arms, unable to see him in pain.
The King dug his knife deeper to keep me in line. He leaned forward and whispered in my ear, “You have a choice, human. You either make your way back up to your world or I kill his mother in front of his eyes.”
He was manipulating the situation to his favor. He didn’t care who he hurt in the process. He only wanted to end it before anything else happened. He wanted to end it before Raiden and I could have a chance to even be together.
Raiden’s tormenting eyes landed on his mother who was kicked to the ground. Ronin took pleasure in beating the woman in front of Raiden. Raiden roared again. His body shaking but the magical chains around his body held him in. He collapsed to his hands and knees.
“Please! Stop!” I struggled some more.
“I need your answer.” The King demanded. Raiden’s eyes snapped to me and everything in them was pleading for me to not leave him but I saw the love he had for his mother. If I stayed, he will be broken. If I left, he will be broken. My heart told me to stay but I couldn’t bear his mother’s death on my hands.
“Sending me up there will be useless. He will come after me.” I tried telling him.
“He will be detained until we can control him. I have my ways, human.” The King sneered.
“Anna...” Raiden said weakly, his hands on the ground. His eyes are on me.
“I will go.” My voice cracked and tears streamed down my cheeks. The beating of his mother never stopped. We can hear her cries of pain.
“Anna, please,” Raiden begged, crawling on his hands and knees to me.
“Let me talk to him first.” I struggled out of the King’s arms.
He released me after a minute. I ran towards him, dropping to my knees. I cupped his cheeks.
“Please don’t leave me.” He pleaded through his tears.
I cried, and my vision blurred, “I can’t...she’s hurting. We can’t do that to her.”
Raiden closed his eyes tightly. His hands moving to cup my cheeks. He pressed his forehead against mine.
“I love you, Anna, please.” He begged through his tears.
“You have thirty seconds.” The King’s raised his hands. My body tingled and little white lights began to surround us. Raiden’s eyes fell to my legs and I looked down to see that my body was slowly disappearing.
His eyes snapped up to me and he shook his head in agony. He moved closer and pressed his lips onto mine.
“Anna! Please!” He pleaded.
“Listen to me, Raiden. I have to tell you what I need to tell you.” I said with a stronger voice. My tears were running down my cheeks. I wiped my tears and used these last few seconds to memorize every detail of his face. How he feels in my arms.
“These feelings I have for you have grown to an immense height. To the point where I know it won’t end until my body ceases to function and my soul is released from my body. I hope that even though we are apart that my love for you will never end. The memories you and I have created, I hope that it rides with you and you find comfort in it on your dark days as I know it will mine.” I cupped his cheeks, pressing a rough desperate kiss to his lips. “I love you, Raiden. I love you so much.”
“Anna, please!” He cried out. Half of my body was gone now. He clung to my shoulders.
This was it. The end of what Raiden and I have had.
Memories of my time here flashed through my mind and I have never felt so much pain in my life.
Who knew happiness will be so fleeting. It felt like clouds. No matter how much I try to catch it. It will always slip through my fingers.
“I love you, Raiden.” My body shook before everything around me disappeared and unconsciousness fall over me.