Where did it all go wrong? How had she wound up in this intolerable situation? Leticia Morris stared into the distance with such thoughts roiling through her head, standing on a cliffside ledge.
What she stared at represented raw, untamed power so incredible it terrified anyone caught outside the shelter.
“Maybe I should become one with that danger,” Leticia murmured. “What harm would it do?” A storm loomed in the space with bulging black clouds in the near distance.
Distant strikes of lightning lashed out threateningly. Hither and thither, the purplish-white jagged shards of electricity hit various mountaintops and trees, sparks flew, but no fire rose. Just steam because harsh, heavy rain unleashed from those clouds. More troubling yet small slender funnels lowered to the seething foaming waters rising against the base of the cliffs where she stood.
Yet not a drop touched Leticia. She felt as though something covered her. Insulation that suffocated her. Oh right. She was inside a glassed-in prison where she awaited an inexplicable execution. “When did I ever receive a chance to explain my side of those events?” Perhaps this was one of those times when nothing would save her.
Leticia laughed harshly. “This isn’t some stupid story where a long-lost lover would appear outside.” She placed her hands against the glass. It was cold but warmed to the touch of her hands. Her face peered back at her. “Huh, once more, I have a fever.” She snorted in disgust. “Bad enough that I became impregnated through that ungrateful bastard’s tricks. Now he seeks to murder both the child and me. He can’t have traces of his infidelity known to the world!” She struck the glass with her hands.
Cracks appeared, shocking Leticia. “Hmm, what better way to ruin his plans.” Or maybe he wanted her to do something desperate such as jumping off a cliff? No, that was not within his realm of dealing with unwanted nuisances. “Hah, he wouldn’t want to renovate this part of his place. It is the perfect way to remove unwanted reminders of sins committed.” She sighed.
On the other hand, why not go through the window. Not even the child she bore would survive the birth. There was no viable heartbeat. Even the doctors said that man wasn’t alive. “Yet he wants me to go through the entire ordeal. I think I will not.” There was no point. Besides, as far as Leticia was concerned, she had taken all the preventative measures. So how had this happened? That was the most puzzling part of the problem she faced.
A sigh escaped Leticia. “Right now, my mental state is so clouded that I don’t even remember what happened in the past two weeks, let alone something occurring nine months ago.”
Leticia shook her head angrily. “No, I think I’ll just do what he doesn’t anticipate from me.” Her mouth quirked. There was someone else she’d loved. Though sadly, it wasn’t meant to be. He’d married another man who shocked the entire city. Leticia had known and given her blessing. She’d stepped back from announcing her feelings for him. “Damn good thing I did otherwise. I’d looked the fool if I had done such a foolish thing.”
Now that Leticia thought about it, her so-called best friend, Henrietta, hadn’t even stood up for her. Not when her not-so-pleasant newly wedded husband, Ralph Morris, made accusations about her. Leticia sighed. “No doubt she was part of that entire fiasco.” She reflected. “It makes sense. She knew about everything that happened.”
Leticia’s shoulders slumped. “Pah, what am I doing wasting time moping about something I cannot defend myself against?” She scoffed wearily.
Those fools actually thought they could keep her caged? Leticia shook her head furiously.
“Well, I know that I can do something to avoid whatever method of execution he has in store for me,”
Leticia recalled that she’d been asked a few peculiar questions by some greasy individuals that confused the hell out of her.
“Weirdos, I think they intentionally poisoned the child and me.” Right after speaking with them, it did seem odd that Ralph insisted that she take some foul-tasting and horrifically smelling decoctions. In fact, he’d forced them down her throat despite her spitting them into his face. Enough had gone down to render her unconscious for the better part of two weeks.
“Hmm, that’s right. Henrietta never showed her face once after the questioning began.” Leticia reflected on that unpleasant memory. She shrugged dismissively. “See if I ever call that wench near me again.” She shook her head with disinterest. It was past time she took decisive action. Otherwise, she wouldn’t have another prime opportunity such as this one.
“Well, it was the last clear thing that I do remember. The questions and those individuals, I don’t recall them at all.” Too bad, she would’ve loved shoving them right into the maw of the incoming storm. “Now to ruin whatever Ralph’s nefarious plans regarding me and the corpse rotting within.”
A slight draft wafted through the cracks in the glass. The freshness made Leticia feel so much better. As if she renewed a connection to nature that was lost some time ago.
Leticia had no desire to remain on the earth right now. Bound to an unpleasant man in a forced marriage, no, that wasn’t something she enjoyed. She glanced over her shoulder at the book series she’d been reading half-heartedly. “Oh right, I guess I should finish them.” She shook her head. “No, they’re part of my problem.” It was such a cliched set of tropes that made her want to gag in disgust. “Why did they want me to read that trash anyway.” She shook her head. “I suppose I could complete it. After all, I was almost through the second to last book.”
Fortunately, they weren’t all that long and were mainly composed of images. The artwork wasn’t half bad either. The writing made Leticia think the author hadn’t meant to bring that much embellishment to the story. If anything, many details were missing, such as what the characters actually looked like. Leticia shook her head. “No, I shan’t waste more time on that series. I doubt it was ever truly complete in the first place.” Despite everything that happened, she only pretended to read the paperbound books. She’d read the entire series through an electronic device, both the comic and the light novel. It was pretty decent in that mode, but it hadn’t translated well at all in the physical bound copy.
Leticia wrinkled her nose. “Hmm, ah yes. I want to get rid of this thing as well.” She scowled at the lacy robe she’d tossed on earlier. It had been stuffy and gross inside the room. Colder air seeped in and made her realize she was covered in sweat. “Disgusting.” She growled in irate hatred of her own ineptitude.
Determined not to think more about what she would do soon, Leticia went into the bathroom and washed thoroughly inside the shower. Then she carefully stepped out and entirely dried off her body before deciding what to wear. Leticia chose a black gown that was loose-flowing and fit her mood perfectly. Then she styled her hair, put on makeup, and gradually approached the cracked glass.
Much to her horror, she heard voices outside. “Oh no, I won’t be hampered in my desire to leave this earth,” Leticia growled.
As she faced the glass. Thunder rumbled. The storm was upon them indeed.
Sharp pains tore through her lower body, making Leticia curse in frustration.
Seriously? What kind of timing was this? Had they known when her labor would begin?
Leticia sighed. “Little one, though I know your physical form wants to come out. This life isn’t meant to give you choices. You’d be expelled and then torn apart in a horrific manner befitting a beast.” She rested her hand against the rounded part of her body.
Nothing. No indication of life.
“Hah, why am I even trying to do this?” Leticia had known it was futile.
She turned her attention back to the glass. It was time to put an end to this ridiculous situation. “I will die on my terms, not anyone else’s.” Leticia declared.
With that, she struck hard against the glass. Larger pieces broke off but pierced into her body.
Leticia yelped in pain, staggering slightly. She leaned against a dented pillar. “Well, now, that’s slightly discouraging.”
Still, she wasn’t going to be defeated in her actions.
Leticia punched through the glass.
Only this time, she fell through it and into the air.
She looked backward and saw the men gazing at her in horrified shock. Leticia flipped them off. “See you in hell, bastards!”
Then she hit the rocky base below and felt all the bones snap. She lost consciousness with pleasure.
Stupefied at what he witnessed, Ralph swore. “Since when did she have that kind of strength?” She was infuriated because she’d intentionally defied the orders he’d given to keep her restrained until the babe birthed. He kicked the door. “Well, send someone to find the body. Do what you can to preserve the child.” He wanted to make some profit from getting rid of an unwanted wife. He gave Henrietta a cold stare. “Did you put her up to this?”
Henrietta shook her head. “We haven’t talked since the judgment passed down.” She shrugged languidly. “I fear she was rather angry at me for not standing up to her.”
Ralph rolled his eyes. “Well, she got nothing for her pains.” What a pathetic way to react to his decision. “I don’t think she read the entire thing. Otherwise, she would’ve realized she’d predicted her own ending. how truly pathetic.” He threw the books out the broken window. “Seal this off immediately,” Ralph ordered. “There’ll be no further discussion about the events occurring today.”
His people did as ordered.
The others sent to find the body finally appeared, but they looked shocked and frightened.
“Sir, the body is gone. I found this, though.” One of his people spoke.
Ralph looked at the disgusting thing in the man’s hands. “What is that?”
It had horns, a small tail, gold eyes, and distinct fangs.
“It is the child.” The one holding it told Ralph. “This is the result of that decoction forced down her throat.”
Ralph grimaced. “On second thought, throw it out the window as well.” He shook his head. “That was a complete fuck-up of epic proportions.”
A single snarl escaped from the child as it flew through the air. It attacked Ralph, tearing out his throat before it was pulled off him.
The damage was done. The child was thrown out as ordered, and it died screaming on the rocks below.
Henrietta smirked. “A little late, but you’re avenged, dear Leticia. May you have a better life wherever you wind up next.” She turned with the men following her. “Now then, it is time to develop a believable story about how all this happened.”
That’s when a knife was thrust through her back. “We’re all going to die.” The attacker informed Henrietta. “After all, you’re the one who orchestrated everything. There’s no reason for you to remain alive. We only lived to serve Leticia and were forced to watch her fall apart.”
Only corpses and a flooded building greeted officers that came to the house after the raging storm passed.