Chapter 15: The Past is a Terrible Thing
Cahin and I walked around town for a bit. We seemed to fit right in. No one gave us any strange looks, and everyone passed right by us, despite the differences in my clothes and that Cahin was. . . well. . . Cahin.
“This is so different from my time. The buildings are way different than before. Seriously, who puts houses on legs?” I said, looking at the houses as they are on legs and stood tall above me. I held out my hand to touch the pillars, but then Cahin slapped my hand.
“Don’t touch anything or I’ll do something. I don’t know yet,” Cahin said.
“So threatening. Why?” I asked.
"Because I said so. Duh.”
“But, that’s not a--”
“Don’t make me burn your soul so badly that you will no longer exist in this world, the next world, or any world.” I clamped my mouth shut and obediently followed Cahin’s side. He gave me a tour of the town, showed me all the parts of it. There were more slums than I remember. A lot more. I couldn’t imagine how much there was. There were probably sections of the whole town that were ridden with disease. ”The death rate here is higher than ever before, and he does nothing about it,” Cahin hissed venomously.
“Who?” I asked. I looked at him, and he looked like he was about to burst into flames and destroy the entire town.
"Him. C’mon, you can piece it together. He should be passing by here any moment according to my memory. Understand?” Cahin asked me.
“Still doesn’t answer who he is,” I said.
"You’ll get your answer in just a moment,” Cahin said to me.
“Ugh, fine,” I rolled my eyes as I waited. Then I heard the familiar clanks of metal in the streets. “Is this him?” I asked as I went to the side, pulling Cahin with me out of instinct. I started my usual disappearing act with the crowd as soldiers came right on through. They marched without noticing me or Cahin, and I finally saw who he was. He was quite older than me, and he was uglier than anyone I had ever laid eyes upon, and yet, every girl was swooning over him.
Cahin rolled his eyes as every bowed down to him. He and I stood tall among the rest of them, and somehow the soldiers didn’t pay us any attention. I thought myself lucky as they went on with their merry way and we were just standing there.
“Is it my hair or something?” I asked Cahin as we were standing in the crowd.
"What?" Cahin looked at me as if he were about to burst out laughing.
“Well, I’m wondering if my hair is so blinding that they can’t see us because they are now blind,” I said.
“Are you crazy?” Cahin asked me.
“I don’t know, but that’s the only thing I can think of why they’re leaving us alone. Oh, wait. My clothing. Is it foreign to them?”
“You are crazy. That’s the only reason you can think of?”
“Oh, they know what you look like.”
"You are naive.”
“What did I say now?”
"How about this reason—” Cahin was cut off by the sudden explosion. We both looked over, and there was a woman on the ground, holding her hands over her head.
“I beg for your forgiveness!” the woman shouted out.
“Forgiveness won’t get you out of this! How dare you!” The Lord of Fire of this time yelled.
“What did she do?” I asked Cahin.
"She didn’t bow fast enough. I know. Petty.” Cahin was seething by just watching this scene.
“What?! This guy needs to be taught a lesson! From five centuries in the future!” I rolled up my sleeves.
"STOP!” Cahin yelled to me. He held my arm back and twisted it so it was painful to say in the least.
“Cahin! Stop that! I just need to horribly disfigure him! That’s all!” I tried to struggle my way out of his grip, but Cahin had the upper hand.
"Trust me! You can’t interfere!” Cahin yelled at me.
“It’s an illusion! It’s based off of my memories! You can’t do anything!” I stopped resisting. Everything started to make sense. “You understood. Good. I thought for a second what I just told you would go in one ear and out the other,” Cahin said.
“You’re very rude,” I glared at Cahin. He just shrugged. “So, why are you showing me this illusion?”
"Because I want to teach you a lesson.”
“You’re a horrible spirit sometimes.”
"I don’t want you to turn into these assholes. Someone with actual potential shouldn’t turn into people like him. Oh, there’s also this warning. This is when Pyra was in war with Aquaria. So, watch out,” Cahin warned.
“What? War?” I said. Then I realized.
“Hello! Forith!” I looked over, and I saw a man standing on a huge wave of water.
“Horain! I was thinking you wouldn’t make it!” Forith shot a fireball at the water wall, dispersing it everywhere. The Lord of Water, Horain, gathered all the water and shot the pillar at Forith. The people that were already there, they dispersed as the water shot down onto them. I looked down at the people running in the street, just trying to stay alive.
“Don’t they care that there are innocent people being hurt?!” I yelled.
"No. That’s why the Spirit of Water and I hated our ‘vessels’ per sé.”
“Is there any way for me to talk to them?!” I yelled. “There’s gotta way to stop them! Right?!”
"No. In one ear, out the other.” Cahin chuckled.
“I’m so gonna kick your ass,” I growled.
“You’d have to get good before you could lay a finger on me.”
“So, how long will this idiotic fight last before ours start?” I asked.
“Ah, just wait until a hundred innocent civilians die, then it’ll be over.”
“A hundred?! Is that a lot?!”
"Meh. There have been worse battles. Such as the time when Water and Fire faced Earth, there was at least a thousand deaths across the entire country.”
“WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE?! AT LEAST SAVE THE INNOCENT PEOPLE!”
"They don’t have the same morals as we do today. Unless it was their own life, these people did not care,” Cahin growled as he watched Forith and Horain attack one another, and people rushing out of their houses, as they either collapsed due to flooding or flames engulfing them.
“I will beat you today!” Forith yelled as he shot another fireball at Horain.
“Unlikely! Your fireballs are smaller than usual! Getting weaker already?! Has old age finally caught up to you?” Horain said as he made the wave he was standing on disperse into tiny little droplets, and made them gather around Forith’s body. He clenched his fists and the water droplets turned into tiny ice needles and they struck Forith’s body all over.
"Who’re you rooting for?”
“They can both go straight to hell for all I care. They both don’t deserve to have you or the Spirit of Water inside them. But then again, I don’t either. Are we done here?”
"Eager to get out of here, aren’t we?” Cahin asked me.
“Yes. Can we return to my time? I want to get the training done with,” I said.
"I will show you more of the past, because you need to learn, obviously,” Cahin said to me.
“But I don’t want to see the past! I told you, I like to be ignorant!”
“But you have to learn from idiots. Then you don’t have to make the same mistakes as them.”
“I don’t want to watch innocent people die! Okay?!"
“How dumb do you think I am?!”
“Do I have to answer that?”
“Get me out of here!”
“But it’s just starting. Oh, the next battle, over two hundred people die!”
“Is it fun for you just to watch me freak out while these two go on a killing spree?!.”
"Yup. What else am I supposed to do? I’m bored for centuries. You’re the first person I am able to talk to since I had my own physical body. You know how boring it has been for the past centuries?”
“I don’t—” I started, but then the eruption of water and Fire raining down on the city stopped me. I looked at the sky filled with steam and smoke.
“Go back to the fiery pits of hell!” Horain yelled, burns covering his arms.
“And you go back to the depths of the ocean, which are as deep of my hatred for you!” Forith yelled.
“Both of you stop it! You’re both dumb bastards!” I yelled. I knew they couldn’t hear me, but it made me feel better at least.
“Look at your populous, and look at their deaths!” Horain yelled.
“Let us see who is laughing as we go to your country!” With that, Forith blasted off toward Aquaria, with Horain following. I was left to see the utter destruction left behind the two.
“Just look at that destruction. Look at the deaths. Look at what you can prevent.” Cahin managed to lift us up with Spirit power or whatever. I looked at my home five centuries in the past, all in flame. I looked at the families trying to wake up their loved ones; even though they knew that they wouldn’t wake up. I looked at all the children, dead or without parents. I looked at the dead people, some still smoldering. I tucked my hands into my elbows as if that would prevent them from killing anyone else.
"This is the price the people pay for war. I know you like fighting, but remember the people. That is what—”
"Stop talking. I don’t want to hear anything right now.”
"Kaira? What’s the matter?”
“Listen. If you wanted to set me straight, congratulations. You did. Happy?!” I shouted the last part.
“I was just warning you about what—”
“I don’t care. Get me out of here. Get me out of here right now!”
“Did my plan work? Are you going to be a good Lord of Fire?”
“Get me out of here!” Tears were burning my eyes. I knew I shouldn’t have been thinking how evil these people were. I was probably no different. I was probably worse than them. I could have been even more evil than them. I could be the worst Lord of Fire there ever was. Or worst Lord of Anything ever. Just seeing what they were like in the past, and seeing no difference in me.
"You aren’t them yet. You have a chance to be different. That’s why I chose you,” Cahin said. I looked at Cahin, looking for that smirk. Cahin gave a warm smile before nudging me. “C’mon. I’m going to make you control fire so well you’d only be second to me.”
“I’m going to kick your ass.”
“Ah, you’d have to actually land a hit on me first.”