Imagine being in the shadow of a strong, silver-hearted man, cursed into butchering his own Horde and his own mate. Imagine over 700 years of isolation burning in the absolution of that day he killed everyone he loved. Imagine finding that man and healing him. Learning him. Loving him. Only to raise his children and years pass just for the blood curse to come back and raise it’s ugly horns. A Blood Raven’s revenge is eternal, yet you think by killing the Raven it’s a fix. Only to find, years later, your mate’s eyes burn blood red, forced to hunt down his first butchered mate and murder her again for second time, to send her to eternal death. That mate, also happening to be my twin sister.
I didn’t spend years of my life learning tragic circumstances could be avoided. I only learned they were inevitable. Just like mistakes.
I told Storm years ago, when he showed me how to switch off all emotion for life and death occasions - that I didn’t want to know. I didn’t want to know the feeling of numb indifference that could allow me to murder without a single wink of an eye.
Yet I had seen him become that monster when necessary and I had chosen to become that monster my Silver Breed could become, for a single selfish moment.
I didn’t want Storm to murder Jinx again.
I didn’t want fate to keep torturing my mate like that, so I made a huge sacrifice.
And I regretted it, but I couldn’t change what I had done.
I stand in front of Storm, by the lake, watching my reflection and fighting the urge to throw up again. Storm’s reflection is behind me, his burnt golden eyes are exhausted, in pain, tormented. His aura is full of a depleted fire. Something I had never seen him express.
Never had he felt like this before. Disappointed. He was disappointed in my decision.
“I gave you reason to believe that murder was necessary to save the ones you loved,” Storm growls out behind me, fighting back tears, “I instilled that belief in you. You could have stayed safe and did nothing. But you willingly sort out a babe and took her life.”
“I feel I should die for it,” I whisper, “In the moment it was about keeping you safe, now, even though she lives - I am not worthy of this life I’ve been given.”
“Don’t speak such nonsense. You also completely misunderstand why I’m disappointed. Blood Ravens entice us to break our moral boundaries. Once we break, the karmic forces can be manipulated by their hands only, to dish out punishment, for those of us who willingly seek out destruction and evil. Only our breed can experience complete innocence and complete corruption. I am disappointed in myself for teaching you that corruption.”
“I just wish we could go back in time,” I murmur.
“Useless musings,” Storm tugs on a strand of my hair and I turn around to face him. He grabs my shoulders and I stare deep into his raging eyes.
“...then what is not useless? What can I do or say that is not pointless, to fix what I’ve done...?” I ask, raising a brow.
“She is alive, the babe is breathing and well,” Storm holds my arms so tight I think he might bruise me, but he’s trying to get across this point with desperation, “You. Are. Lucky. But you have spent your entire life by my side, doing good. Choosing kindness. Your one moment of evil, in my eyes, was saved by your true intent. She breathes as the Sky Gods commanded it.”
“But what if I break and I do something like that again, what if a situation arises in the future where it’s suddenly an option for me to commit such an atrocity because I’ve already done it once before. What if -”
"You will never do such a thing again!" Storm leans in, touching his nose to mine, his forehead also against mine as he snarls the command, “Never. Or you will never forgive me - because I taught you how to switch it all off... I was the one who taught you to kill if you needed too. You will never have to, nor will I allow you to ever give into that kind of eternal darkness again.”
“I hear you... but what of me... how I feel about what I did -”
“It is my fault, pipsqueak, shut up,” Storm raises a hand and covers my lips, “Shut. Up. Please,” Storm’s aura is radiating hurt and grotesque disgust - this time, I do believe, it is at himself, “If you ever say it’s your fault again I will tie you up for an eternity. Understand, ill-advised pipsqueak?” Storm slowly slides his hand across my mouth, his finger resting across my lips so I don’t speak. I only nod, as a tear falls down my cheek. Storm growls from deep within his throat when he witnesses my tears, “Not. Your. Fault. You listen to me too much. You should spend time away from me so you don’t become consumed in this corruption. Your soul is too beautiful to be tainted by the life that has burdened me. That is my burden - not yours. It never will be.”
I reach up my hands and weakly grip his wrist of the hand pressing a finger to my lips. I dig my nails in until he almost bleeds, my eyes blazing with emotion.
“I will always be in your shadow, protecting you however I can,” I whisper out, licking my dry lips, “I will always be hoping you realise that, that all you have to do is turn around and I’ll be there.”
“You know I know that,” Storm grabs my face, running his thumbs along my cheek bones to dry my tears, “I will always know that. But that doesn’t mean you won’t make stupid reckless mistakes. Anything dark, bloody or torturous falls on my hands, pipsqueak. Mine alone. You will never know the pain I have because I will not allow you to withhold it. Jinx gone does not bother me - she knows I was ready for her choice. Jinx was always a snarling curse on her own accord. Uncontainable fire. You, on the other hand, are like sweet holy water... and I will keep you as such no matter what I must do to keep you that way. Purely. Perfectly. You. My greatest love will not be tainted.”
“...I feel a bit better... considering I just murdered a - ”
“She is alive,” Storm cuts me off, “Don’t speak of it again.”
“Oh... but,” his furious gaze warns me not to continue down that path, so I gulp and try to change the subject, letting out a shaky breath, “...perhaps you can distract me instead?” I ask, meekly.
Storm finally loses his serious mask, which melts into a smirk and a promising wink, “I do not call it distraction, pipsqueak. I’d call it your everyday reality.”
“Oh, really?” I ask, playing along even though I know what he is going to say.
“When you’re not skipping around our Horde, you’re pleasing me, aren’t you, little one?” Storm’s eyes rage with the passion he has for our sex life and I can’t help but roll my eyes - knowing it will piss him off, “...it is not a game to me, Silver... do not roll your eyes.”
“You always threaten a rough time in the sheets and then you end up serenading me into blissful lovemaking, tickling me into my peaks,” I can’t help but laugh by the way my words completely offend him.
“I got the impression, cumming from blood was too much for you, little one,” Storm growls this low, watching me like a hawk, “Or do you secretly crave torturous sex?”
“I think you should think about cleaning that damned horder’s cabin of yours, instead of fucking all the time, ‘legend’,” I scoff, “You’re not even...”
“Don’t say it, pipsqueak.”
“...you’re not even that impressive in the sheets, but I guess I am bedding an ancient old man who’s imagination has started to dwindle into what, a couple of positions,” I let out an almighty sigh, completely exaggerated and my eyes sparkle with the rise I get out of Storm. He knows I lie but he takes the bait.
Storm reaches out a hand to my neck and I dance back a step, too quick.
“I don’t believe I’ve fucked you in front of the whole Horde yet, have I, pipsqueak?” Storm asks, too casually.
“No!” I can’t help but giggle a bit and I almost trip back into the sand of the lake as I stumble back another step. As I watch his Broken Fire intensify, I know he is about to mist - so I mist first - flying away into the forest.
Provoking the legend to prove himself was an extremely dangerous game - but to me, by now, it was just second nature.