This chapter contains violent scenes
"Come on, Mama. The store will close for the day." I drag my extremely amused mother through the busy road. We've been taking a stroll through the market under the bright, warm sun since sunrise, and I'm still super hyped up.
We had just finished buying Some foodstuffs for the house, enough to last us a week. My mind has been overflowing with different ideas for the beaded jewelries we make for her store.
But, she just won't walk faster. She's clearly entertained by how excited I am. I mean, can you blame me? If we don't get to the shop for the beads, they'll close the store. And my mind won't let me rest until I've made that idea a reality.
"It's not even past noon, Inna. I'm sure we can take our time, and enjoy a little bit of fresh air." I ignore her, causing her to chuckle. But, she follows my lead any way.
At Grandma Lucy's shop, I can't stop the smile that arrests my lips and face, as I behold pearls and beads of different sizes, colours, and shapes.
" Now tell me, Olivia. Why is she so overactive? Did she take in too much sugar?" Grandma Lucy asks Mama.
That's what everybody calls her. At 1400 years, she's the oldest woman in Eoth. But, she refused to stay put and let her children handle things. She says she has too much life in her to waste just lying down in her too noisy home.
I ignore them and let my eyes feast on the pearls glistening under the sunlight.
"She says an idea is killing her. And that I'm assisting it in murdering her if I don't get her the beads." Mama explains, making Grandma break out in fits of laughter.
We leave Grandma's store after our purchase. I got some blue and pink beads along with lots and lots of sea shells. Our house is by no means big, it's actually quite small and old and sometimes smelly, that is, after papa drinks so many bottles of alcohol. But it's our home.
"Let's hurry with lunch before your father comes back." There's just a flicker of fear in her eyes as she says this, but I ignore it knowing perfectly well that speaking of it will do us no good. I'm also aware of the consequences if we fail to get lunch ready before papa comes back.
I nod and place the foodstuffs on the counter when we enter the house through the old front door. Mama and I maneuver our way in the small old kitchen, taking care not to be too rough since most of the appliances and utensils are old and can easily break.
She takes care of the sauce, and I prepare the vegetable rice. We work in harmony, humming a lullaby she used to sing to me as a child. But, we sing it together this time around.
We're done after a few minutes. Papa walks in just when we're setting the table. His presence makes the peaceful atmosphere run out the open window, a tense one taking its place.
Papa takes his seat at the head of the table. My heart beats in fear as I set the food infront of him with trembling hands, careful not to make any mistake. Mama and I are careful as we take our seats at the table, she on his left and I on his right, all in silence. No one intends to break it. It's mostly like this everytime we sit down to eat.
The only difference is Papa is not drunk this time. He's completely sober, that in itself is a shocker, he's usually so drunk he passes out before touching the food. I don't know if it's because he has no money.
"What is this?" There's obvious anger in his tone of voice. "Where's the meat in it?"
My heart beats faster, trying to win a race against light. I feel sweat trickle down my forehead, and I can't stop my hands from vengefully shaking.
"That's all we could buy with the money I had. You didn't give us any." Mama mumbles, making sure not to look at him in the eye. We never do that.
A slap echoes through the house, Mama's head snaps to the left at the impact of the slap. I bit my lips to keep any comment I have at bay, I'll only make things worse if I talk.
" You expect me to house you and your daughter, and feed you as well?" He exclaims, eyes wild with anger.
The chair falls down with a thud as he abruptly gets up. He holds Mama by the neck then throws her against the wall. I try to push him away from her, but get punched in the process. Her cries of pain can be heard as he pierces her chest with his claws, drawing thick red blood from her.
"Please papa don't hurt her" I shout out at the top of my voice. But my pleas are met with deaf ears, as I watch my father, the man who is to love me unconditionally beat the living daylight out of my Mama.
I watch helplessly as her life source flows from her, through the cut across her chest. The pain and hopelessness intensifies in her eyes as she struggles to keep them open.
At age 117, I'm still as weak as I was when I was 112. The only difference is my black curly hair has grown to my waist length, and my skin is just as tanned as Mama's.
Mama said I'm as pretty as papa, but I didn't understand her because I look nothing like him. She said I look exceptionally angelic with my purple eyes, which is a very unusual feature.
I have been called a freak of nature because of my eye color. But, I know they are wrong, because them being able to shapeshift makes them the the most freakiest of nature (doesn't bother me saying this cause I can't shapeshift).
My family and I live in Eoth, the capital of Zhanton. Mama sells beaded jewelry, a trade I learnt from her and enjoy doing too. As for Papa, he is unemployed, he feeds of the money mama and I make from her trade.
He used to be a doting father to me, and a loving mate to mama until I turned 112. The age all shifters are able to trade their skin with their beast's fur, but had still not undergone this change. He started to hit mama and I, saying all his efforts in raising another man's child has been put to waste.
She says he's her second chance mate, after she lost her true mate in a battle with rogues.
I run as fast as my wobbly legs would allow and push him with my small arms, I watch as he falls on his ass with a low thud beside our worn out couch in the living room.
Papa turns to me in fury and I see a madman in his eyes, at that moment I know I have indeed lost the father who treasured me as a child, and paniced at the slightest pain he saw in my eyes.
"You whore. You insignificant piece of trash, you are just like her!" he shouts, spittle flying from his mouth in his crazed state. It hurts me to hear these words from the man I have grown to call Papa.
He runs to the kitchen and I let out a sign of relief, thinking the torture session for the day has ended, that he will no longer return to hurt her. I crawl to Mama's side whiles ignoring the pain in my body when I move.
"Please, don't close your eyes." are the words of desperation I cry out to the only being that loves me. The Goddess Selene and the Fates have already forsaken us, so I see no need to cry out to them.
"Inna, my baby girl, please forgive your father." Mama says with a smile. She can decieve anyone with that smile but not me.
I see the pain in her eyes, I see how the simple act of talking and breathing feels like death to her. But, how foolish and naive I was to think it was all over. Papa comes back holding a knife made of Aeds sylv'r, with plastic as it's handle so it doesn't burn him.
How I wish the gates of hell would open and swallow him whole. That Hades himself would come for his soul. The man I now see is not my Papa.
"No papa please, I beg you don't do this." I plead with tears stained eyes and snot coming out of my nose. I ignore the headache all this crying is causing me. I ignore the stabbing pain in my heart and let him see the plea in my eyes, and let him hear pain in my voice.
"I have had enough of you, you look just like him. Don't look at me with those devilish eyes!" he exclaims in vexation. He does'nt see or hear my pleas, anger and fury has clouded his eyes and made him blind to my pain. He hits my temple with the knife's handle, pain explodes in my head and my vision gets blurry as I crash down beside mama on the cold floor, all strength has left me.
"P...Please.. no" I whimper, not having the energy to speak from the throbbing pain in my head, not having the strength to even move my finger to reach out to her. My vision gets blurry and my eyelids get heavy.
"No, you don't! you will open your eyes and watch as the life leaves her." papa says and slap me across the face. But, I couldn't feel it, desperation is all I feel.
I watch helplessly as he pierce her heart with the knife.
"N...NO!" That is the last thing that comes out of my mouth, that is the last word I will ever speak, the last plea I will ever make.
I watch the life drain from Mama's eyes and the blood from her veins. I loose consciousness from exhaustion and pain with Mama's lifeless eyes all I see.