The room was dark and freezing cold. The paint peeled off of the once blue walls. The floor was filthy and infected with mold. It was the only color on the floor. There were no windows and no other light source, just a large rusted metal door offered an exit.
A woman cowered into a corner, crying and screaming through her teeth. She was here alone and felt abandoned in this unknown room. She experienced pain as she never had in her 20 years of life. This she had to endure alone and in shame of what had happened to her.
She needed to rip that thing out of her. It was the only way that she would be let out of this nightmare.
“W-why me?” she cried weakly.
She was hunched on the ground with her arms over her head. Just then, she felt another contraction in her womb, and she was ripped out of her miserable thoughts.
“WHY ME!” she screamed with so much strength, not caring if her vocal cords tore apart.
Everything hurt. She could no longer tell where the pain was coming from. She wanted it all to end. She wanted that thing to be ripped out of her body. She wished to kill the child she carried.
But just aborting a child of rape was not enough for her family. Her family was anything but ordinary, honor, and pride were everything to them. The baby will not be aborted but will suffer for the rest of their life. Tortured until they begged for death. This was not an ordinary child she bore in her womb. This was a child she was forced to conceive by a monster. The kind of monster that children were told stories about to scare them into obedience. The same kind of monster that her family dedicated their whole legacy to exterminate from the face of this world.
To carry and give birth alone was her punishment for being weak and being defiled by the enemy. Their honor was everything. That monster dishonored her family by forcing her, their only daughter, to carry a monster in her womb. To regain their honor and take revenge on the monster who fathered the child, the family would torture the child their whole miserable life. Even monsters had pride and were angered when their spawn was harmed.
But they were only angered. They never come to reclaim their spawn from the hunters whose daughters they defiled. Despite fathering these wretched creatures, the children had a weak bloodline due to having a human mother, and so no effort was made to save them. Decades of torture awaited any child born out of such union. The children’s only reason for such agony was being born.
The woman’s pain only increased as time passed, and the feeling of the child emerging strengthened her heart. She fought through the pain to continue to drag and push the baby out of her birth canal.
Minutes felt like hours, and hours felt like years. But then she had succeeded, and the baby was out. She was beyond exhaustion, drenched in sweat and blood. She suddenly began to laugh hysterically and cry. She laid on her back and stared at the dirty ceiling above her. Her ears felt muffled as if they were underwater. Even her heartbeat sounded foreign and strange to her ears.
Slowly she turned her head to the creature that had emerged from inside of her. Disgust was the only emotion she felt and crawled away from it. She waited in the corner, feeling minutes like hours pass. She waited for someone to come and take her away from that thing.
Soon, the heavy metal door to the room opened and entered three men. All were heavily armed with guns. The three men were members of the Vaughan clan. A clan of hunters. They were dressed in black shirts and black cargo pants.
Behind the two younger men who entered first, was a much older man with a cold expression. He had a scar that ran from the left corner of his mouth to his hairline. Many other scars littered his muscular body. Each scar held a story about a hunt. He had a commanding presence, and the two younger men immediately made way for him.
“Is it done Ferwin?” The older man asked the woman who soon crawled to his feet.
“y-yes father!” The woman cried. Her face was a mix of tears and dirt.
“Good, you return to us now daughter, the seed of that filthy monster is no longer within you. You may return home now.” The older man put his hands on her head and stroked her hair.
“Thank you, father,” Ferwin cried in relief, her nightmare has now ended, and she can finally be allowed to go back home to her family and be with her beloved.
“I will take this thing back to the dungeons. Your brothers will help you home. Your mother was very anxious for your return, so go back quickly and take rest.” The older man’s cold expression softened, and he helped Ferwin up and into the arms of her brothers.
The baby cried helplessly on the ground, but no one cared or even looked.
Soon they left the room, and the man’s expression turned ice-cold again as he gazed at the bloody lump on the ground. The baby’s cries never stopped. Upon inspection, the man found the gender.
“A fucking girl, huh? You will pay for forcing my precious daughter to give birth to you!” The man shouted in disgust.
He picked up the baby by her left foot and held her upside down. His gaze burned into her eyes.
“Cry and wail all you want, your monster of a father will not come for you, blame him for your miserable life. He should not have gotten involved with my family.” He growled at the baby, who did not understand and continued to cry.
With the baby’s foot in hand, he left the room and made his way to the clan’s manor. The place his daughter gave birth in was only a few minutes away from the manor. Clan members he passed did not stop him but instead looked in disgust at the child he held. All around, there were whispers about their relief that the clan leader’s daughter was now free from that abomination. She could now marry Hans, they had been sweethearts since high school.
He walked down a long hallway towards an old grey door. Behind it was stairs that led deep underground. He proceeded to go to the basement and into the dungeons. There, a dark and cold room was waiting to be claimed. It will serve as the cage that would hold this child until the day she died. She will never know the light, only pain and suffering. At least that was its intention.
He left the baby on an old dirty rag that was left there on the cold cement floor. He then walked out of the jail cell and slammed the door behind him with a loud bang. The baby girl was left there in the cold and darkness. Caged for the years to come.
She will not die because she was no ordinary baby. She was to have half the strength of a full vampire. She had a vampire’s cursed blood, as well as a hunter’s blood. Both make her stronger than any human child. But this strength was a curse in this place, this meant that they could starve her longer and beat her harder without worrying she would die off early.
The child cried for a long...long time. She cried for years of the torment that members of the Vaughan clan gave her almost every day. She has beaten over everything that went bad in the life of the clan. All that time, she was not told the big why. Why she had to suffer this way? They blamed her and called her a monster, accused her of a crime she had no knowledge of.
She became empty and soulless. Her thoughts were silent. She never saw the light, never known kindness or love. Her only knowledge of the world beyond this cage was that it was the domain of her torturers. Her hearing had become so sensitive, she could capture all the sounds occurring in the home above her even through her cold metal prison.
It was this way that she was able to hear the most familiar woman’s voice. The woman was speaking very kindly to others.
‘mama...’ The little girl thought too afraid to speak lest they hear her and come and beat her.
The little girl had no memory of the woman’s face, only her angry and disgusted voice as she all but dragged her out the womb. That woman never came to beat the little girl. In fact, she never set foot in the basement in these five years since the birth of the little girl. The only one who came to beat and torture her was her grandfather and uncles, who would always bring their friends.
The little girl could hear all that happened in the house, all the laughter, and celebrations. But also, the mourning as a member of the clan died. The little girl would always feel joy whenever someone dies in the clan. There would be plenty of fighting to lay the blame and the sound of crying. It also meant one less person who would come to beat her.
The cold no longer bothered the little girl who only had a sack to wear in these frigid conditions. She no longer felt her own body. She was like a silent ghost below a house that silently observed everything but could see nothing.
Only a month after the little girl got the sensitive hearing ability, she heard something that tore her already frozen heart. The sound of her mother’s labored breathing as she was giving birth. There were several other voices around her mother. All of them were encouraging and loving. Telling her to push harder and that she will be blessed with a beautiful, healthy child if she worked hard. And soon enough, the cries of a baby were heard.
“Its a girl! Oh, she is so beautiful Ferwin!”
“Oh, my sweet child! She looks just like you!”
“I say she looks just like Hans.”
The little girl was burning with jealousy, so hot it burned her eyes. Tears poured down her cheeks. She wondered why this child received such different treatment, they had the same mother and were both girls.
The little girl sank to her knees and dug her already broken nails into the ground enough to draw blood. She ground her teeth together. Anger made her see red in the darkness of the cell. Hatred filled her.
She had built a little fantasy in her head that her mother would one day forgive her unknown crime and take her to live with her in the upper house. But as time passed, that fantasy crumpled little by little. Today was the final blow that shattered to a thousand pieces.
“I will name her Gabriel.” The new mother named her baby girl and filled with joy, completely unaware that her actions had broken the mind of another child of hers.
The little girl was never named. She was only referred to as it and that thing. No matter how much she cried, nothing changed. Slowly she retreated and sank down into a corner of the dark room and waited. But she did not know what she was waiting for. She did not see an exit, she could not imagine what death felt like and whether it would’ve felt better than living in this nightmare. She believed that she will continue to be locked here forever.
While she had never seen the sun or moon. She found ways to tell the time. At night, the majority of the house would become quite as the clan slept. During these hours, she would feel much stronger. During the day, the house would be lively as everyone went about their business. It was during these times that she felt weak and sleepy. The clan would choose hours of the day to come and beat her while she was more vulnerable.
The older she became, the harder the beating she received and the fewer scraps of food she would get. No one bothered to explain to her why she was to be treated this way. And she did not speak a word in front of them. She could only scream in pain as she took their beatings. They would blame her for the pain her mother endured. She was told this repeatedly until she began to believe that she was something evil and had done something wrong to deserve this torture.
One day, the clan leader came to the little girl’s cell, who was now 7 years old. He came to beat her as usual, but this time he actually spoke to her. He may have had a slip of the tongue at that time, but he was smug when he saw the expression that emerged in the girl’s face.
“The scraps you are thrown are the bits of food that my grandchild Gabriel doesn’t want to eat, be grateful you filthy dog!” The girl’s heart was shattered yet again.
A few more kicks in the stomach, and he left banging the door behind him. Her sensitive hearing caused her to flinch away in pain. She could only cower into the corner, nursing her freshest wounds. The old ones did not yet heal, and yet more were added to them. More will be one the way soon. Her hatred grew more and more at a faster speed than her wounds.
This is how the little girl spent the next 8 years. Listening to the happiness of the family and the voice of her half-sister. Gabriel spoke with much love for her parents. Gabriel was now 10 and her older sister, 16. She was the older sister, but she was neglected both emotionally and mentally. While Gabriel spoke in fluent English, the older sister only knew how to scream. The older sister never learned to speak, read, write, let alone know what she looked like.
Gabriel never had a clue about what was taking place in the basement of her beloved home over the years.
As a tradition in the Vaughan clan, the children are taken on their first hunt at the age of 10 under the supervision of the parents. What was meant as a family bonding and teaching experience ended in disaster. As the family returned to the manor, The little girl sensed the storm. There was a lot of shouting.
“Gabriel! I am so disappointed in you! These things may look human, but they are monsters! You let your guard down, and your mother got hurt!” Hans, Gabriel’s father, shouted.
“This is unacceptable from a daughter of the Vaughan clan!” Ferwin shouted. She sounded like she was in pain.
“I am sorry, father, mother, but I can’t do it. No matter how I look at them, they look human to me. They bleed the same as us and feel pain. She begged me not to kill he-” a loud crack was heard. The older sister suspected that Gabriel was slapped.
The little girl was overjoyed. Her mouth curved into a wide smile.
“Silence, you foolish child! They are murders, and it is the duty if this clan to purify the world of these abominations. The sooner you begin to understand that, the better. Now go to your room. I do not bear to look at you right now!” Hans shouted.
“But father I want to help mothe-“Gabriel pleaded, but her father cut her off.
“Go to your room NOW!” her father boomed.
The older sister heard Gabriel’s feet running away, no doubt, to go to her room. At the sound of Gabriel’s sobs, her older sister felt smug and happy. But that happiness immediately disappeared when she began to hear a pair of familiar footsteps walking on a route towards the staircase that led into the basement.
She felt fear in the pit of her stomach, and as the door opened, she crawled on the filthy floor backward until her back hit the cold stone wall. She knew that this beating would be different as she had never seen the clan leader’s and Hans face so angry. And that anger will be vented out on her.
She swallowed, bracing for what’s to come.
The whips they held shimmered with a silver liquid that slowly dripped on the floor. When she smelled it, she immediately hissed and tried to retreat further but failed as there was nowhere else run.
“Even this precious silver is a waste on your filthy body.” Growled the clan leader as he made the first lash.
Pain like she had never experienced sliced through her mind and body. She almost passed out as dark circles swam in her vision. Unfortunately, she remained wide awake.
Each lash tore her skin open, and the silver burned her. She was able to smell her own burning flesh but could only shield herself with her hands. She could only scream.
But then, something unexpected happened. Something that the two men had never intended.