‘Why is this taking so long Cornelius? We need to stop and have a break’
‘Stop that whining Romulus we had a break an hour ago. I can`t be letting you take a break every five minutes we will get nowhere if I do. Besides all this walking will be good for you in the long run when we really face a proper challenge.’
‘But, but …’
‘No buts you hear me you foolish boy’
It is a few hours after sun rises and we have only sat down to rest once. Over these last few hours the heat has become almost unbearable to the point of where I am carelessly dragging my feet along the forest floor. I think by now Cornelius want to just kill me for being a pain in his arse walking around the forest. Some questionable glances have gone o Cornelius when he has swatted me with his tail and muttered cryptic things under his breath. Howling in the distance has slightly concerned me because the further that we area walking into the forest the more that this particular howling is just getting that tad bit louder. Either we are walking towards it and whatever is on the other end of the howling is coming towards us. In the far distance something tall is poking out of the trees. Curiousness got the best of me and I veered towards it.
The closer I got to it something in my gut told me to turn away and to run as far as possible not looking back. When I did in fact arrive it is a towering in the sky wall covered thick in poison ivy. No brick was left unturned as the poison ivy has grown over the whole of the brick wall. Searching around the trees have stopped a certain distance away from the wall. More or less the wall could have been placed inside of a sort of clearing. Traveling the length of the wall on my right it seemingly turns a corner. Maybe it isn`t just the running of one wall.
‘Romulus we haven`t got time for this we need to get going to find somewhere to stop and this isn`t such as good place to do so’
‘Hold up Cornelius I want to know what these place is’
‘It is just a rundown graveyard that is all’
Freezing still I recoil at Cornelius`s words. Shaking his words out of my head I stride down this new corner it stops halfway at a broken gate hanging off its hinges and the carries on after that. Virtually the gates are rusted beyond repair nevertheless the design of it is still clear. Iron poles go through the middle with little arrow heads at the top and woven through the iron poles is some thin iron branches with some leaves directed off them. At the bottom and the top between each iron pole is some iron in the form of a circle. Not really sure what it means but with a little touch to the standing side gate it topples backwards with a large bag to the floor. Cringing at the sound of the bang a group of birds are startled themselves and fly out of the tops of a few nearby trees behind me.
‘Don`t go in there Romulus otherwise you won`t be coming out of there alive’
‘What’s that supposed to mean Cornelius?’
‘That graveyard is filled with murders, rapists, perverts and may other killers that will take advantage of you the second you step through those gates. You already have caught their attention when you crashed down that gate a second ago’
Going against everything that Cornelius just told me I stomped my way over the gates into the immensely large graveyard. Nothing out of the ordinary is noticeable at first, Cornelius is calling me from beyond the gates and everything is virtually still within the graveyard. On either side of me there are row and rows of headstones of all different kinds crystal clean and shiny to the point where they are sparking in the sunlight brightly. At the end of the path it leads to a small church nearly as small as a town story house compared to the towering height of the walls around the graveyard/ Benches are dotted around the place and a tree is seated in each corner of the graveyard. An eerie silence is layed thick in this place, with no wind floating about the place and no sound of nature from any birds or insects from either inside or outside the graveyard. A bit confused I continue to walk down the neat stone path admiring the work of the different headstones on either side of me. A tall Cornelius appears beside me is pissed as anything.
‘Look there is nothing here at this well-kept graveyard. I just want to go and have a look within the church to see what is looks like from in the inside and then we can go on our merry way if that makes you happy Cornelius’
‘Something doesn`t feel right here so I think we should not go look in the church and make our way out of here before something bad does in fact really happen’
‘Why are you so worried anyway? Nobody is here and besides why come in if you know something is seriously wrong?’
‘As your guardian I am supposed to …’
Cornelius was unable to finish his sentence because the earth beneath us gave way. I screamed falling down the newly opened hole in the earth while Cornelius tucked himself into a large ball of fur. Not taking the him from Cornelius I landed in a battered heap at the bottom of the hole we got ourselves into. My ankle busted under my weight one way or another it is sprained or broken.
‘Now do you see what you have gotten us into. This graveyard guides sucker like you in here to trap you, kill you, and lastly dissect you into small chunks’
‘And why didn`t you yell me that before we entered the graveyard or better yet why didn`t you physically stop me’
‘You need to learn that every action has a consequence added on to it’
Frustrated beyond belief I run my hands through my hair and down my face. Twirling about in a circle the whole isn`t very big squishing the two of us together. Surprisingly Cornelius changes appearance from the giant wolf beast to a six ft. ten male. Plastering myself against the wall I studied him from head to toe more curious than terrified of the man in front of me. Bulging muscles rippled underneath his short sleeve grey t-shirt as his cargo shorts hung low around his hips sculpting the toned legs of his. Cornelius’s coffee coloured hair crusaded down his back shaping his face nicely as his black eyes bore into my own. My eyebrows knitted together as my jaw dropped and I speechlessly looked at him like a fish out of water.
“Speechless aren`t we Romulus didn`t expect that coming from me did you?” Cornelius Spoke out loud for the first time.
“What just happened here? I don`t understand what the hell is going on here Cornelius.” I replied.
“I promise I will explain as much as I can to you when we get out of this hole, away from this ungrateful graveyard, and back into the forest.”
Silently nodding at him together we put our heads together and formed a quick plan to get out of here alive and in one piece. Standing back to back the tow of us linked arms and hoisted our feet against the crumbling mud walls. Using out muscles and pure strength in our legs we walked out way up and out of the hole in record time. As we reached the top we launched ourselves to the ground landing swiftly with a roll. Out of breath I layed on my back with my eyes closed. Yet soon enough a shoe came in contact with my side causing me to roll over and groan.
“Look what we`ve got boys finally some lunch to dive straight into. I`m sure that we can pull them apart enough to last long enough until the next lot of curious people con into the graveyard.” A raspy voice boomed.
Both eyes popped open as I am kicked a few more times in the side and the stomach. In the corner of my eye Cornelius is being held down by tow stocky built men. Three older men are standing over me smiling at me showing off their yellow teeth. Frozen on the floor I remember some bad memories of my past when I used to get beaten up a lot by older family members.
“Romulus don`t let them beat you up. Find it deep inside of you are let go. I know that you have it in you to fight back.” Cornelius shouted over to me.
Unsure what he meant I searched deep inside and let go of all the anger against those who beat the shit out of me as a small weak defenceless child. Souring through my veins something bubbled and boiled through singing as it went along. I didn`t know what I did but heat boiled through my skin and the older guys around me and Cornelius screamed terribly before all of a sudden they all just puffed into thin air. Gasping for breath the heat gliding over my skin died down and whatever flew through my veins disappeared soon after as well. Dazed and confused more than ever Cornelius the man helped me to my feet guiding me out of the graveyard in one piece. A short way from the graveyard back into the forest Cornelius sat me down on a log and began to explain to me some things. Apparently spiritual guardians have some unique power and in so one of his powers is to shape shift into whatever being he needs to most at the time. Furthermore, he continued to explain that the guys in the graveyard are spirits of rapists, murders, perverts and more that are forever bound to the graveyard looking for their next victims.
“Come on Romulus get up I am going to teach you how to hunt for your own food here on the island.”
In the next few hours Cornelius taught me how to hunt several types of species lurking around the forest at this time of day in the scorching heat of the sun. Hunting proved to be more difficult than I expected it to be but virtually I got the hand of it. Now we have been hunting together to catch our lunch. After that Cornelius sat back and watched me skin the animals we caught and put the meat on the small camp fire Cornelius was able to put together fairly quickly beforehand. Where we have positioned far away as possible from the graveyard I can see in the distance over the trees some mountains standing tall covered in snow and surrounded by pure white puffy clouds. I really didn`t like the look of them from way down here. As beautiful as they look those mountains they look as equally as dangerous further up they go.
“Those are called the middle mountains.” Cornelius said interrupting our silence.
“Why are they called that?” I questioned.
“They are the centre of the island of course and the way that we will be heading but not climbing. Those mountains have a mind of their own and will kill you with any natural disasters that they can muster up such as an avalanche or simply dropping the temperatures setting in frostbite.”
“Great that’s something I`m not looking forward to. Death by mountains.”
Eventually we ate the meant we hunted, dosed the fire and headed out way towards the unfortunate killing middle mountains. The forest seeming changed the more we walked through the forest. Quietening down about the middle mountains conversation the two of us changed the topic of conversation onto something more light hearted and eventful. Unconiously I rub the back of my neck almost as if someone is watching me from a distance with a burning heated and hatred gaze. Taking a glance at Cornelius he is doing the same thing as me. Without saying much, he knew as well someone or something is watching the two of us. Sweeping my vision across the forest I couldn’t see anything out of the ordinary. I didn`t realise I got off course because I can no longer hear Cornelius`s footsteps beside me. Stopping in my tracks I whirl around on the sport several times. Cornelius is nowhere to be seen even though he was just next to me a split second ago.
“Oh Romulus all by yourself now with no one left to turn too.” A voice slipped through the air.
“Is isn`t fun being left on your own is it dear Romulus? So many things just waiting to be unfolded and spoken aloud.”
The more the voice talked my pulse rose and quickened as I am constantly turning around in circles trying to find where the voice is coming from. With the lack of water, I may be just hallucinating but nothing is any different as it was a mere few minutes ago.
“Don`t you remember that time you were the one that allowed those fowl people into you home who the proceeded to take you little baby brother right of his crib.” The voice said.
“No none of that happened I didn1`t let them in on purpose. I believed their lies about being friends with my parents many years ago through their high school years. I didn`t do anything remotely wrong I was just a kid when Rocco was taken away as a baby.”
“But you were the one that let them in and on that note it is your fault that it happened.”
Screaming out, I gripped my hair at the false accusations and dropped my knees to the floor. Everything was spiralling out of control with the voice throwing vocal attacks at me in every direction. Curling up in a ball on the floor I screamed until my throat runs dry. Memories of that say flood my mind circling around and destroying their way through al; the emotions that I feel towards my parents and my old abusers. Not really sure how long it has been I came down from my screaming match and roll onto my back taking a large deep breath of fresh air. Through the trees the sun is boiling away high in the sky warming up spots of grass I am currently laying in. NO longer here the voice has disappeared and forced up some extremely bad memories that I didn`t want to ever bring up again any time soon.
“Well, well, well look who we have here already submitting to the torment of the island.” Lorenzo`s voice floats through the air.
Jumping up off the floor I put myself in a defensive fighting position towards nearby leaning against a tree. His posture and body language is the complete opposite of mine which concerns me. After our conversation last time I was pretty damn sure that he was going to attack me the next time that we crossed paths.
“What are you doing here Lorenzo? Go find someone else to play with maybe Gideon who I am sure would be pleased to mess around for a brief amount of time with you.” I said.
“Wow ok I just thought I would come and tell you that your baby brother is long gone off the island by now and no longer wishes to see you in any shape or form.”
“No Rocco wouldn`t do that.”
“He told me himself I’m telling you boy. Fingers crossed and hope to die I am telling you the truth Romulus.”