The Marking Of Mortality

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Mortality is defined as the state of being subject to Death. Since the previous year, a disturbing incident has occurred every time someone became an adult. When the clock strikes twelve, a smeared marking appears on the pulse of the right arm. By the end of the day, a timestamp with the individual's full name gets tattooed. This, however, is not created by people; rather, it is activated by a power from above. The important question is not where it appears, but rather what it represents. Unfortunately, more and more of these disturbing events are beginning to occur, and there is a reason for this sequence of disruptions, albeit no one has yet solved the mystery. This is due to a missing component, which is connected by two hearts that share a feature that sets them apart from the rest of the population. But what does it represent? It's straightforward. It represents when an individual passes away.

Mystery / Fantasy
Age Rating:

Chapter 1

A blanket of sordid debris carpeted the cabinets of the archaic building. An intricate web of spiders adorned the entire house, generating a discomforting ambience. The door, which was once crimson, remains the same, but the peelings are all different shades of pink that have been exposed to August’s heat.

The windows no longer welcome illumination indoors, nor do they elevate the darkness enforced by the walls. The only thing that exuded positive energy was the swing, which rocked back and forth while being surprisingly unrusted. Located in the backyard, encircled by unkempt grass shafts and withered flowers.

Perched on the swing, a lonesome boy peered up towards the sky, searching for just a glimmer of hope. Hazel eyes squeezed out a teardrop that cascaded down the tanned cheek. He shifted uncomfortably, tracing soft patterns over the veins on his left hand, before letting out a shuddering sigh. He was an attractive Parisian gentleman whilst clothed in tracksuit trousers and a white tailored turtleneck. A charcoal book with an inconspicuous exterior nestled adjacent to the swing, however, the message within became the focal point of significance.

Penetrating through the sheer silence was the distant vibration of a phone. Jerking towards the direction of the noise, his eyebrows furrowed in confusion. Black sneakers lead the way to a stack of discarded magazines by the broken chair. Looking around cautiously, he crouched down before grabbing the shiny vibrating asset. Despite the shattered screen, it was evidenced to be in functioning condition. Messages emerged one after the other, concealing the picturesque wallpaper of a rose.

As the emphasis transitioned from the vibrating asset, it was lured towards the mesmerizing panorama that London revealed through the second-story open window. Between clouds, that promise rainfall is a river with strokes of ochre, splashed with the undertone of lavender and a tinge of crimson. The sun, partially hidden, peeked out, making it the last fragment of art in the big canvas the world painted for humanity to admire.

Mouthing the abruptly typed texts, his eyes grew comically before slightly relaxing. Returning to the swing, he grabbed the booklet and wiped his face with the back of his hand. The only message that stood out to him said read the letter on page 152, flipping through the pages he finally reached the matching page. A blue piece of paper was attached to it, with his name highlighted in bold. Ripping the paper from the book, he quickly shoved it inside the jacket pocket before taking a deep breath.

Questions after questions arose in his brain, but he came empty for an answer. Who had sent that message? How did they know he would be here? Was someone watching him? Who could the person be?

He wandered inside the building, getting distracted before grabbing a small recording device from underneath the rug and inspecting it thoroughly before abruptly slamming it down in sheer terror. As a shudder descended his back, the realization occurred that the hand of tan complexion was now painted with strokes of blood. The recording device had the same name as the author of the booklet he was holding.

He fiddled with the device, forgetting momentarily about his hand. Finding the off switch, he clicked it two times before slamming it down on the table. The heaving of the chest, accompanied by the grinding of the made it evident that he was enraged. He produced a strangled noise when his eyesight blurred. “I really should have taken anger management” he muttered to himself.

Before he could create a theory, the phone in his hand began vibrating again. Through the corner of his eyes, he noticed a mahogany table that had a sequence of droplets that formed a bloodied design and the entangled footprints indicated that somebody sprinted from the chamber. As his focus shifted back to the phone he realised this time it was a call, hesitating he slowly swiped the answer option and held it to his ear. On the other side, he heard screaming and shuffling before pin drop silence settled the atmosphere.

“William” a gruff voice commanded.

The now identified boy froze at his name being called. Before he could utter a syllable, the unknown caller continued

“Kindly read the blue note from the book, and wash your hand before leaving” Building up the courage “ whose blood is this?” he asked in a feeble voice.

“alguien que me traicionó. eso fue una advertencia para ti” the man replied for an answer. {*Someone who betrayed me. That was a warning to you*}

“I don’t even know you” he whispered back feeling the confidence drain out. “Yes you do william Además,Solo una cabeza arriba, se espera que falsifiques un tatuaje”

A loud beep was heard, signalling the end of the conversation. {Just a head’s up, you are expected to fake a tattoo}

“Fake a mark?” he questioned before a string of gibberish rushed out. As the conversation rewound itself in his memory, the realisation occurred. “Wait he said I know him, was that father’s secretary” he gasped out loudly, rushing towards the partially hidden by wall sink. Feeling the cold water seep between the five fingers, his nerves relaxed. The ceramic sink was now stained with blood and though the oval mirror was broken it still reflected an image. Due to the cold winter and the events that had occurred, his cheeks were hollow and his lips were quivering looking quite grey and lifeless.

Snow had now slowly started descending, each snowflake appeared to sparkle in a playful swirl, as if containing light. It danced in the cold air, pure water made even more beautiful by her crystalline form. Winter had finally arrived with an icy serenade. In the cold streets, there seemed to be only two people. An old man sat on a wooden bench, reminiscing memories of happiness while holding a walking stick in his hand. And on the opposite side, a small girl ran around the patch of grass, with an adorable husky following her. The old man laughed at the scene, getting the attention of the girl. She ran up to him yelling “grandpa” he slowly lifted her from the ground before resting her beside him.

William stood under the flickering street light watching them quietly with a ghastly smile. Retrieving the paper from his jacket, he started walking back home. There seemed to be some sort of an encrypted poem written. The note pronounced that it was his birthday the following day which held true. While the rest of the lines required some serious thinking and freaking out. As the remainder occurred, he traced his left hand again before shutting down his entire thought process and focused on random objects that he passed.

Since the past year, eighteenth birthday’s were no longer a happy occasion. The theory had first been marked as a false testimony before newspaper reports and tv interviews were confirmed as an affirmative. Families reached out all in tears, but not able to hide it anymore. No longer were cakes being eaten, love wasn’t being passed around, instead, it was like a stormy cloud floated over every house.

When the clock strikes twelve, that very moment, he will be eighteen but with a dead soul.

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