The weightless slumber was slowly fading.
It felt like my soul had separated from my body and was floating in an abyss. But it felt like I was returning back to my body.
The stiffness in my hand and elbow made me twitch. But strangely I was feeling a lightness too. The air was warm, artificially warm and the strange beeps in the background was disturbing me, making me pinch my eyes together. I took in a deep breath, my lungs filled up to the brim and an involuntary sigh left my lips.
I fluttered my eyes open, squinting at the dimmed light in the room.
I was in an unfamiliar room, but it looked luxurious. I shifted my head and looked around, a couple of monitors beeped on my left, a drip connected to my arm and two clips on my fingers. I lifted my hand, frowning at the unnatural lightness in my body. A paper brown blanket was wrapped over the lower half of my body as I realised that I was dressed in hospital scrubs.
I turned my head to the right, a groan slipping past my lips at the soreness due to the awkward position of the pillows.
“Ariel,” I almost jumped out of my skin at the voice, the heart rate monitor shot up and my eyes fell on mom who stepped forward to sit on the stool and clasped my hand in hers.
I took in a deep breath and took in her familiar green eyes underlined with dark eyebags. The warmth from her hands were seeping into my skin.
“Ariel,” she breathed out my name again, her eyes searching mine. I blinked at her, parting my lips to speak. “Mommy,” my hoarse voice made my throat itch.
Mom closed her eyes, tears slipping down her cheeks as her hands shook around mine. “Mom?” I whispered gently.
I remember everything, every detail. And I know what I am going to hear.
As opposed to what I expected she broke down in sobs, clutching my hand to her face. “Ariel,” she sobbed, her tears wetting my hand as she hugged it close.
“Mom, it is alright,” I whispered quietly. I have destroyed everything. By now everyone must know that I have three colours. What are we going to do?
She sat up straighter. I whipped her tears with my thumb gently. She sniffed, her face pinching as she tried to hold in a sob. My own throat constricted. I don’t want mom to cry because of me. I don’t want to be the reason she cries. After everything she has sacrificed for me, her tears are too much to ask.
The beeping jumped again and mom stilled in my arms.
“Oh, I am so sorry, I know I shouldn’t have started crying, the doctor said not to give you any stress or any unwanted shock. I am just being too sensitive. I can’t do anything right. For god’s sake I was enjoying my days while my children were out there fighting that monster. I-”
“Mom!” I placed my hand on top of hers and curled around her waist, placing my head in her lap. She blinked at me, stopping abruptly. Her hands didn’t move, didn’t caress my head.
A drop of liquid touched my cheek and cascaded down in a sad trail. Another followed as I soon felt her body shaking as she wrapped her hands around me tightly, crushing my head against her stomach. The safest place I have ever been, I realised at the moment.
“Mom I am okay,” I whispered hoarsely, my throat itching at the dryness.
“They- they sa-id that, tha-t you-u fell from fif- fifty feet, and I saw e-everything thing on the v-video. The T.v- and- ” mom shuttered, hunching over me and kissing my cheek repeatedly. I gave her waist a squeeze in return, letting her know I am still here.
“But you are okay right?” mom gently brushed her hand through my hair.
“Does it hurt anywhere? You are on painkillers so it shouldn’t hurt much. And they did say that they checked you for any wounds or injuries and dressed everything properly. It was nothing life threatening and luckily nothing was infected,” she said with a sniff.
I curved my lips in a small smile. My eyes moved to the bedside table, to the glassed and the water jug. I pulled myself from her embrace, slowly detangling myself. I sat up on the bed and leaned towards the water jug. She immediately sprang up from her seat and poured water in a glass, bringing it near my mouth. I smiled, it has been so long mom. It felt like I was a different person then and I have returned, years later to the home I once knew.
I placed my hand over hers and she tipped the glass, cool water filled my mouth and I gulped it in desperation. I sighed when mom removed the glass and placed it back on the table. Mom sat back on her stool and I looked around, noticing the flat screen, the couch placed before a ceiling to wall window and the clock on the wall that read 3:20 am. My eyes fixed on a figure, wrapped up in bundles of blanket, snoring softly. If I were someone else, I might have dismissed it as a bundle of blankets.
“Ash refused to sleep and wanted to stay up all night to keep watch on you. He said he won’t go home without you” mom whispered softly. I smiled fondly at his chubby little arms and legs folded together as he slept with his mouth open. I sleep with my mouth open too, that is how my tooth fell out of my mouth while I was sleeping when I was eight.
The questions started swirling when I glanced back at the clock.
“Where is Skye!” I yelped suddenly, eyes wide as I realised it is past midnight. Skye was shot, he was wounded. We need to bring him here. Marina said they would try to treat him, but what happened?
“He is in the next room. The bullet was already removed when paramedics reached Urydale and his condition was stable. Kayden and your dad are with him.
I slumped back on the pillows at her answer. Oreana did make sure that he was okay.
“Mom, what happened?” That is what I wanted to know the most, what happened?
Mom lowered her eyes before speaking in a whisper, “we were at home, about to move to Maven’s apartment to hide just like you have said and I saw everything on the T.V. You were fighting against the officers, you with your friends and it was all in the news. And I was so scared about what was going to happen, Kayden kept reassuring me about everything but I-,” she paused taking a deep breath.
“And then they displayed those videos that were playing on the screen and oh it was just horrible. So cruel what Sorin was doing to all the colourless and their families. But then a creator created a large bird-like creature and I was already having a bad feeling about all this. I didn’t want you to go. But you just left so suddenly and I, I- was barely able to think. I was so scared with what happened with those officers and then everyone knowing about your colours. I-,” she covered her face with her hands, shaking her head.
“What happened after that mom,” I wanted to know what happened to Sorin, I know I am alive and in one piece so I was saved somehow but I want to know what happened to him and all the colourless that were with me. I waited, trying to hold back the jumpy feeling in me that was urging me to rush out that closed door and look myself.
“You used your colours to save yourself, but you were getting weak and you fainted mid fall. They were showing that on the T.V. too. But I don’t know, something happened and you were floating mid air, it was like magic, a miracle. Your colourless friends saved you,” mom whispered the last part. Her eyes closed as another tear slid down her face.
I wanted to know if that bastard was at least jailed. But seeing mom, something in me suggested not to ask her that.
I glance at the T.V. remote lying on the bedside table. I stretched a little and picked it up. I switched it on and browsed to a news channel.
Harsh colours flooded the dim room and I winced at the bright colours.
’Some shocking new discoveries have been made against Nanthanal Sorin, a reputed board member, in the Clauferry AceCrest game this Friday. In the incident that was previously being considered an attack on the government is now being as a rebellion against a government conspiracy. Through the videos and documents that were released in the public at Clauferry, it is now concluded that the government, especially Nanthanal Sorin was involved in a brutal conspiracy against the people, who are now being recognized as the 4th race of colours.’
Video clips of our fights were displayed in the news with the commentary along with the evidence that we had exposed.
I skipped to the next channel and there was a clip of Sorin being arrested, another news on how criminals have infiltrated the ranks as officers and another channel was walking through Urydale and its people.
There were paramedics and ambulances in the street. People being guided somewhere. A scene of Urydale’s prison cell. ‘People of Urydale are being escorted to the capital and will be kept under the government aid.’
That means Nanu and Nana will get here too.
I took in a deep breath and rubbed my eyes, switching off the T.V.
I can’t believe that it’s done.
That it is finally over.
“Ariel? You are awake,” I snapped my head at Ash’s voice, he jumped from the couch and bounded to my bed. I patted the space beside me and smiled as he pulled himself up on the bed. I hugged him close to my side, wrapping one arm around him and pulling the blanket over us.
He curled his small body around me, purring his face in my side. “I was so scared. I was shaking you but you wouldn’t wake up. And the doctor was saying that you were stressed and didn’t sleep and…. Something like that,” he mumbled, wrapping his small arms tighter around me. I chuckled, snuggling closer to him to ward off the memories that flashed whenever I tried to blink.
I can still see that man holding a gun at Ash’s head. Him trembling, reaching out to me. His face red with tears and mouth screaming in desperation.
I squeezed my eyes shut, eyelashes wetting as tears moistened at my eyes.
“I was scared too,” I whispered back to him.
Mom came closer to us, stretching her arms around us and holding us close. I sniffed, inhaling the soft smell, like a warm homemade bread, the smell of home and family.
I rested my cheek on Ash’s shoulder, tilting my head to the large window.
It is strange, really.
My family is right here, with me, wrapped in my arms. Safe.
But somehow the shadows in the room appeared scarier.
This is sort of like a prologue, I will start on this book after about a week or two when I get over with my exams!
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