Memories fade because of the convergence of time, except for mine. Not only do I hold every single moment of this life inside my mind, but since the moment he pressed his lips against mine, giving away the last bit of his soul, I cannot lose anything inside my mind. While most would agree Hell is the worst place to live, childhood was the purest documented torture I have ever faced.
Being reborn came with its own challenges and for my parents who undoubtedly did not deserve such a demon of a child, I truly felt sorry for the way I was. In my defense, on a basic level, none of this was my fault. I never asked to be reborn, in fact, I wanted to die and go back straight to Hell where Hades kept me safely hidden from the world.
Becoming an infant with the memories of your past life, it is no surprise I remained discontent all the time. I couldn’t do anything for myself, speaking was impossible. To make everything more difficult, I couldn’t understand the language anyone spoke around me. Life in those early days still echoes into the core of my being. If I understood what was happening, then perhaps I would have been a better baby, a better daughter.
Childhood came as a roller coaster with many inconveniences. As I learned to speak their language, things became more problematic. Not only did I question them about everything, I tried so hard to tell them the history of pictures haunting my mind. When a three-year-old cannot communicate complete thoughts into sentences, she resorts to drawing.
I can still see the grim shock of fear in my mother’s pale white face as I covered the kitchen floor with colored wax. The body of a child does not have the motor skills of a full-grown adult, but I tried my best to show her the things I held back from my past life. After trying several hours to fill the paper with the images of him, my face is the only thing to exit my fingertips.
Looking back on the image, it truly was a frightening appearance portrayed on the kitchen floor. Beaten and ruined. My bruises and blood sprawled over the white porcelain tile. In truth, I wanted my parents to understand the life I lived before. I held no interest in the variety of toys they bought me or the cartoon characters inside of the television. I wanted nothing to do with this life.
Being the good Christians my parents were, I spent more than half of my years inside of a church. They searched for an answer to my mental disposition with prayers, but when that didn’t help, they turned to the Catholics. When I was six, the religious order tried to exorcise the devil from within me. What else are you supposed to do with a young girl who claims to know the devil personally? I mean so directly that it was him who ended my past life and brought me to this one?
I tried to explain my life and the mystery of the God they trusted. While they continued to pray to for help, it became incomprehensible the thought of their daughter having a direct connection between the light and dark controlling this world. My parents, bless their souls would never turn from the God they faithfully followed all of their lives.
These people surrounding me had to know the truth of the Gods and the devils hiding in plain sight, but they refused to listen. Their God did not have a heaven waiting for them when their souls departed from this world. Although I already said I spent time in Hell, it doesn’t exist in reality. The place where Hades took me to hide me from the world, it is a home, his home. No magical world exists full of light and love. And no deep pit of raging fire to consume everyone who sins. It is all a fable created by their ancestors.
Before the God my parents worshipped came along, the souls of the dead went straight to the underworld where Hades kept them safe. It was there when he brought me back to life. At the time, I thought he did it only to torment me, but in reality, now I have seen the truth of the God I loved, the one who killed me, twice. Hades only tried to save me from the vile creature.
When he first ended my life, I didn’t truly die. My body did, thankfully with no pain, forcing me to end up in the Underworld. Seeing, knowing the difference with my soul, Hades kept me safely hidden from the souls wandering. The ones looking for another body to possess. Whereas, when most die, their soul travels while their body remains firmly planted on Earth. Because of the gift I received in my death, my body followed my spirit.
Genuine hell over took my body when this new God took over the Earth. He came to Hades demanding all the souls to be reborn. Unable to allow me to be reborn, Hades handed me back to the world. With no control, my soul traveled straight to the one who owned it. The God I swore my love and loyalty to. The one I gave my life for. Decayed, persecuted, and plagued by the world it didn’t take him long to kill me.
So now, after my parent’s abrupt death and seeing this new God for myself, I did the only normal thing I could think, search for other’s like myself. By my own dumb luck, I found him, and I must say, he isn’t what I imagined.
When I felt the instant jab into my ribs, an urgency of my demise drove through my heart. The sudden fear of death stopped it for a few seconds until my brain recognized the earnest prodding. The result would be me landing the back of my hand across his face. “Jesus fucking Christ!”
“Lena, fucking, Turner!” Roman laughed when my wrist was caught in his grasp. Turning in the barstool his amber eyes gleamed in the dusky room. A smile stretched across his face with utter excitement from stopping my heart.
Ripping my hand back I balled it into a fist plunging it deep into his gut. The devious smile disappeared briefly. When it came back it didn’t have the same thrill as before. “You really need to stop that!”
“So do you.” Taking the bar stool next to me Roman spun it around to stare at the despondency of the night.
With the club now empty and filthy after the long night it lost all its wonder. I hated this part of the early hours. The world would continue on to start a new day. When the lights are flashing and the live music fills the room with the reverberation of the drums drawing a beat, that’s the paramount time to be here. This emptiness though, to say the least, is depressing.
Still thoroughly unamused, Roman’s smile lingered, “You were thinking about him again.”
“What would make you think of something like that?” I questioned turning back around to stare at the pile of cash strewn over the bar.
Roman started spinning around in the chair while I regathered my tips and sorted the dollar bills into their respective piles. “The record has been stuck at the end for over an hour now, and when I left nearly two hours ago, you were still counting the money.”
Taking in a deep breath, I sighed, knowing full well everything he said was true. I lost track of the time, and the record, like he said skipped in a horrible growl protesting the end of its role. Had I really been so far out there in my mind I lost track of reality itself?
Roman stopped spinning in his chair and leaned over the lacquer covered pennies making up the bar top, “You aren’t any closer to finding him so long as you stay here with me.”
Shoving my shoulders into the air I looked over to see him pouring himself a shot of Crown Royal, “I don’t have the money to run around searching all the dark corners of the Earth looking for him.”
“If you would just use your powers, then you wouldn’t need money.” Roman threw the liquid down his throat and choked, trying not to make a face. Pouring another shot in the glass he slid it towards me, “He gave you those powers for a reason. Don’t you think it is time to use them to fill your soul?”
“Fill my soul?”
“You will never feel whole until you find him.” Rolling my eyes, I finished stacking my money. I would have counted it except Roman poured me another shot. After forcing both the glasses in front of the money, he picked up the pile of twenties to count them for me. “I think I found her, Lena.”
With the news, I found the need to gulp down the poison in front of me. The news of a phoenix did not excite me like it did with him. Then again, the phoenix would be his soul mate. He searched for her, just like I searched for mine. Although, remembering everything, the pain, the fear, and the possibility of death, finding my soul mate did not thrill me. My soul cried out for him with a hopelessness I could never possibly understand.
Roman’s need to find this girl grew deep within his soul, eating at it, crying for her. Life destined them to be together. Their powers together could unlock the implausible ways of the future. Which is the exact reason I did not want to be near either of them when they finally found each other. Her powers would match his, and together they would have more potential than the god who created them.
With the god who created me, my god Apollo, we weren’t exactly soul mates. He placed inside of me a part of his soul, forever connecting us together. This piece of him always cries out for him and there are times, like a few moments ago where it would take over me, always searching for him.
I could feel him out there in the world, but I don’t know where he is. Hiding in the dark, away from the world, I feared his survival without me. My heart belonged to him since the day I first came into the world. This blessing placed on my soul, cursed me for more than several lifetimes. I’ve lived, died and felt the sting of the longing stuck inside of Hell.
“Lena, fucking, Turner.” Roman blasted again, this time at the vacant expression on my face. “Get your shit together!”
Coming back to reality, the awful scratching of the record stopped and the room now lit up with the florescent lights from the ceiling. All the money I stacked neatly in their respective spots disappeared. Roman now stood behind the counter clearing out the rest of the register.
“Go upstairs and get some sleep.”
Shaking my head, I stood up to go get the mop in the closet, “I can’t sleep like this. I need to keep myself occupied. Tell me about the girl.”
“Her name is Devon.” It didn’t take much convincing for Roman to begin about the girl he hoped would be his soulmate. I only caught his first sentence before my body took over in some hypnotic sense following through the motions of cleaning up the mess left behind. My mind, however, wandered to a small church where I could almost see him sitting in a darkened corner waiting for his next meal to walk in the door.