Torment

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Chapter 14

All things must come to an end. People, Cities, Countries, Planets, Galaxies. That’s always been the idea. That everything must have a beginning, middle, and end. But the end isn’t always coincidental. Maybe there’s a war. An asteroid. An explosion. A being.

A being so powerful, that only legends tell about him. Legends that have been forgotten over the centuries, because the thought of something that powerful, and that dangerous existing, seemed all but impossible. But the beginning, and the middle, have already long passed. Now, the end is coming. And it is coming, with a vengeance.

~

Kuron

“Please, just let me speak with him.” Me’rite sobs in front of me. I glare at her. If she were any other being in existence, she would be as good as dead, right after I flogged her until nothing was left but flesh barely hanging to her bones. But I can’t kill her. I must send her back to her home once we return, for her father to decide her fate. Our marriage had promise, even though we didn’t know each other, I felt for her. But she never gave me the chance.

Even after we had our son, she took him in the dead of the night, and never returned. She stole the rightful heir, and my pride and dignity along with it. Furthering sullying my name when she reproduced with the lowly being of the 3rd plane.

“You had centuries to speak to him. Yet you tampered with his mind, ruined his self-awareness, and manipulated him to your will. You will never be able to speak to my son, again.” I snap. She drops her head, sobbing even more. The crying may have melted me in the past. But now, it only sharpens my irritation.

Remus is suffering beyond comprehension. Now that his memories are back, he can see each and every time his mother has sabotaged his life, and taken his thoughts, all for her own selfish gain.

“Please, Kuron... at least let me as your wi-”

“You are not my wife!” I hiss.

“You are no longer my wife, you are no longer anything to me. You will be exiled, and punished for your crimes not just against me as your husband, but as your king, and your people! You have no say here, you have no voice, you have no right to speak your son’s name. You will be shamed for what you have done, and when he is ready, Remus will decide your ultimate fate.” I growl. She wraps her arms around herself, hugging her body and cries. I turn away from her.

Remus is no longer hers to control. Pretty soon he won’t be mine to control either. He’s finally reached his maturation. He’s stronger than me, even though he doesn’t realize it yet. I make my way to where I have him held.

The chains I’m using to keep him held are energy cuffs, but pretty soon they won’t be enough. I round the corner and find him, sitting. His gaze is empty. His skin is flashing. It’s his energy trying to gain control. But something it holding him back.

“Remus.” I say his name, and he doesn’t respond. He takes in a deep breath, and his gaze locks with mine. I feel a chill up my spine, but try not to show him my uneasiness.

“What do you want from me.” He asks accusingly. I can sense his hatred for me. He stands, walking towards me until he is standing directly in front of me. He’s glaring into my soul, trying to read me.

“I want you to take your rightful place on the throne.” I say. He glares at me, with no emotion.

“Why did you wait all these years to find me.” He asks.

“Your mother kept your location a secret. She was hiding your trail, your conscious stream. So, when we searched the planet you were on, there was no trace of you.” I say. He looks away.

“I’ll take my place on the throne... on one condition.” He says. I can’t help the smile that crosses my face.

“Anything, my son.” His gaze meets mine, and I see it. His energy has merged with him. The chains I had keeping him at bay dissipate, and the cell around him is gone within an instant. He’s remembered everything. He is ready. A powerful wind whips around us, and the energy begins surging through his veins, he seems to be lighting up from within.

“Let me kill them all.” He growls.

“The whole damn planet.”

~

Iris

It’s hard keeping secrets. Watching Ezra and Xion’s pain, knowing their father is here kills me. But I can’t say anything. I’m not supposed to. I’ve been spending time with Ezra and Sky, since they are the only ones down here that tolerate me. Or rather, Ezra does. Sky lets it be known that she doesn’t really care for me. And I understand why.

My mind is going a mile a minute. The fact that everyone here is resting their hopes on my shoulders. They’re hoping that I will have some kind of effect on Remus. And even then, they are wanting me to convince him to spare this planet. How could I though? These people are inhabiting our planet, willingly a part of taking it over, and destroying others. Why would I help? Why should I?

It’s perfect. The perfect revenge that has been dropped right in my lap. If Remus remembers me, and if I have some kind of affect over him, I can stay silent and let him destroy the people that were a part of taking my home. But can I? I always stood up for what was right, can I let the innocent die? Be homeless? Have to inhabit a whole other planet? Or worst-case scenario, cease to exist?

I still remember Acacius telling me that Remus spared the Earth all because of me. That is why they believe I can convince him to keep his own home planet. But even then, if what they say is true, and he’s been through all of these horrible things, do they really even have a chance? Do we? How would I even reach him? With the power he extrudes, it seems like I wouldn’t even be able to reach him in time.

I’m sitting in the room on the bed, just letting my thoughts consume me. My arm is still broken as well as my leg. I can’t even move fast if I wanted to. I look up when I hear footsteps, half expecting it to be either Sky or Acacius, but to my shock and dismay, it’s Xion. She’s glaring at me, and takes a step into the room. I automatically try and shift myself backwards away from her. She’s a terrifying being. The last time she spoke to me, she threatened me. and from that point she has never been kind.

“It’s ok. I’m not here to harm you.” She says as she steps inside the room. She takes a seat in the chair across from me, and just stares at me with those bright purple eyes. Just like Remus’.

“How old are you?” She asks out of nowhere. I blink in confusion, and actually have to think about it.

“I don’t know.” I say. She raises a brow at me.

“I lost track of time when your people took over.” I say. She looks at me, and doesn’t bother to hide her irritation.

“Sooner or later someone would have. Or you would have killed each other with your ignorant bickering. Be glad we stepped in when we did.” She snaps. I roll my eyes laying down. She obviously wants something.

“Why are you here.” I murmur. She’s quiet for a moment before responding. She lets out a deep sigh.

“I was the first person Remus told about his bonding to you. He called me, and he was... different. Confused. He’s always been so calculating. So, I thought that surely it was something big if he was feeling doubtful about himself. And then he told me he bonded. At first, I thought he was joking. That could be the only explanation. Remus doesn’t get close to beings, let alone bond with them. But as he spoke more and more about you, I could see it in his eyes. The adoration he has for you. He was so fascinated by your ”

I roll over and look at her, and she’s gazing at the floor. My eyes widen when I see the tears rolling down her cheeks.

“I know this, because the way he lit up when he spoke about you, it’s the way I get when I think about Chris.” She looks up at me.

“Regardless of the fate of this planet, I love my brothers more than anything in this world. I want Remus to be happy. He deserves to be after everything our mother has done to him...”

“How-”

“Acacius told us everything. It was hard to believe, but it was the only explanation that made sense as to why he tried to kill us. No matter what happens to me, Remus can only be truly happy with you. So, I’m putting aside my feelings for you to ask you this... will you take care of my brother. Will you teach him to love again?” She asks. I stare at her wide eyed. This woman has never spoken to me, not in such a kind manner either. And now she is here, begging me for her brother’s sake. Everyone is begging me for survival, as if everything rests on my damn shoulders. I don’t respond to her. I turn my back to her, laying down facing the wall.

“What is love?” I ask. The room is quiet.

“It has different meanings for different people... You’ll just have to find your meaning with my brother.”

“You must come quick!” We both look up when we see Acacius in the doorway. His eyes are wide and full of fear. I feel my heart rate rising in anticipation and fear of what he could possibly be scared of. Xion is up in an instant.

“What is it.” She snaps.

“It’s Remus. He’s made his move.”

~

I don’t think I’ve been this scared in a long time. My palms are sweaty, my heartbeat is erratic. I’m afraid. And I’m not the only one. Xion is wrapped in an embrace with Chris, and Ezra is too weak to even stand, so it will be just Xion and I heading out. And he might actually kill her this time. He may very well kill the both of us.

The last time I saw Remus when he was in a rampage, was the most terrifying day of my life. And now, according to Acacius, he is even worse since recognizing who, or rather what he really is.

“Remus has begun with the destruction of this world. Xion will protect you long enough for you to get into close proximity with him, and once you do, well we can only pray that you can do something about him.” He says. I don’t respond, only keep my gaze down. He grabs a tight hold of my hands.

“Think of it this way. Your brother is somewhere on this planet, alive and well. If Remus destroys this planet, your brother is going along with it.” He says low, and I see the desperation in his gaze. He’s right though. I hadn’t thought about Andrew, and if I let Remus destroy this planet, Andrew will die along with it, and I can’t let that happen.

I pull my hands out of his grasp, stepping back.

“Ok.” I murmur. I look up when I hear Xion coming. Her demeanor is cool. Collected. But I know she’s afraid. Especially since the last time she saw Remus, he almost succeeded in killing her. And if it weren’t for Sky he would have succeeded in killing Ezra.

“Let’s go.” She murmurs stepping past me.

Since my leg is still healing, I have to be carried on Xion’s back as we exit the underground caverns. The journey to get out of the caverns takes a while, seeing as we were several feet underground. And even then, Xion doesn’t seem tired as we emerge. The sun is shining down on us, and I can’t help the smile that graces my face when I feel it.

Xion continues walking with me on her back, not saying a word. I look at the world around me. The trees are looming over head, and the sun is high in the sky. There are some kind of bird like creatures chirping above our heads.

It’s hard to believe that Remus is somewhere causing trouble when it’s so peaceful here. I think back to the world that Remus created and lived in for so long. The snow and the palace he resided in. It was amazing, and beautiful. I wonder if I’ll ever even see it again, or if these are my last moments.

For all I know, once we reach him he could kill us both on the spot.

“What was Remus like as a child?” I ask. Xion doesn’t respond, and I half expect her to ignore my question. But she doesn’t.

“He was quiet. Wasn’t too trusting. It was just me and him for a while, before Ezra was born. He was always so advanced when it came to learning things. Now I know why.” She laughs bitterly.

“He didn’t like me at first. He used to fight with me, and push me to do things I didn’t want to. He did the same with Ezra. I guess at the back of his mind, he always knew that mother was doing those things to him.” She looks down.

“I can’t believe I never noticed. I’m a terrible sister. I’m supposed to protect them, and all along he was being used by the one person we thought to trust. He must hate us so much.”

“He doesn’t.” I respond automatically. I think back to that time when we were on Earth, when he told me I could see my brother.

“He talked about you and Ezra. He told me that you guys are his weakness. He loves you both very much.” I say.

“The only reason I’m doing this is for my brother.” I add.

“He’s somewhere on this planet... If I get Remus to spare this planet, you have to find and release my brother.” I say. She’s quiet for a moment.

“Ok.” She says softly. I smile, resting my head against her. A small victory for me, and it feels amazing. I may not have been able to save my planet, but at least my brother will be safe.

“You’re a strange human, Iris.” she says out of nowhere.

“You’re nothing like them. Your people crash landed here years ago, and Christopher was among them. They betrayed him, and they tried to hurt me. They put their lives and the lives of their planet in danger for selfish reasons. And since that encounter, we have seen the root of their existence. But you are different from them. I can see why Remus fell for you.”

“Humans aren’t bad. We just got lost for a little bit... and never found our way back.” I say. I know she hears me, but she chooses to ignore me.

We walk for what seems like hours, until we finally come upon the destruction. It starts off as a few, but then more and more Leviathin are running our way, screaming in terror. Some are bloodied and bruised, while others are dragging their unconscious loved ones.

I look ahead as we reach the city, or what’s left of it anyway. At the center is a mass of dark clouds and lightning. And I know immediately that at the center of it must be Remus. The ground around him is dissipating, disintegrate ng into nothing as he destroys the city. Xion falters, and I can feel her shaking.

“Xion?” I say her name trying to pull her out of her gaze, but she’s stuck staring at the destruction. I take note that there is a cloud of matter coming towards us.

“Xion!” I shout. She finally realizes and moves just in time, as the ground beneath us quakes and rises.

“He’s going to devour the planet.” She whispers.

“We have to stop him, how can we get to him?” I ask in a panic. She shakes her head.

“We can’t. The air around him is dangerous. If you touch it, you could vaporize instantly into nothing.” She explains. I look at her in shock.

“Well we have to do something, Xion we can’t just watch him devour a planet.” I say. She shakes her head.

“I can’t even see him.” She whispers.

“It’s like he’s something else entirely.” She says in horror.

“Did you people not have a plan when you dragged me out of that cave?” I say. She shakes her head.

“We did, but I wasn’t expecting this... He doesn’t just want to kill everyone, he wants to make them suffer.” She says in horror. She turns away from the destruction, and makes her way with the running crowd.

“What are you doing?” I shout. She shakes her head.

“There is no way we can get to him. He’ll kill us first. We have to leave. Get Ezra and everyone, and leave this planet. I know of a few we can take refuge on.” She says.

“What? No!” I shout, but she isn’t listening. She’s still running.

“Xion, stop!” I scream. All I can think about is Andrew. I struggle on her back.

“Xion!” I scream. She pauses, yanking me off her back so that she can look me in the eyes.

“Listen to me, girl. You have no idea what it is you are even up against. Remus is no longer here. He has become the being he was supposed to be all of those years ago. There is no way for me to physically get close to him, or he will kill us both. Just by being in the same vicinity. You will feel your flesh burning until it is falling off of your bone, and you are killed on the spot. This is beyond any of our comprehension.” She says to me. I feel tears coming on as I shake my head.

“That can’t be! There has to be something we can do!” I shout. She has her eyes narrowed at me, and she does not look happy. I can see the gears turning in her head. Her gaze softens, and she lets out a deep breath.

“I can hold back the rays. But not for long. I’m still too weak to do much. You must try and get him to see you before it kills me.” She says. My eyes widen.

“Wait what?” I ask. She shrugs.

“You said there must be another way, and there is.” She turns around.

“Now climb on.” She says.

~

With each cry of pain, my heart grows even more and heavier. Xion is literally giving her life for this world. For her brother, and her people. The closer we get to the massive cloud, the more in pain she becomes. I can see the skin covering her being slowly burned away as she places up fields to block the surges coming our way.

I can see the bodies of hundreds the closer we get. I feel sick to my stomach to think Remus is at the center of this. I tense as Xion lets out another cry agonizing pain. I gasp in shock when I see her cheek. It’s bleeding. Her skin has been burned away.

“Xion, stop! We have to go back!” I shout. This could kill her. She shakes her head, continuing to push forward and block the surges with her abilities. And all I can do is sit on her back, watching her do it. I watch in horror as she goes against all pain she is feeling, and pushes forward.

I look ahead, and my stomach drops. I can see him. Remus. I feel a myriad of emotions rip through me. I haven’t seen him like this before ever. He’s different. There is so much energy surging through his body, it’s as if he’s lit up from within. His hair is flying around him.

“I can see him, Xion we’re almost there!” I shout. She grunts in pain, and drops on the ground, causing me to tumble over with her. We hit the ground, and when I look up I see her a few feet away from me. Her gaze is dulling, as she stares at the sky, and blood is pouring from her mouth.

“No... no!” I gasp. I crawl towards her, ignoring the scraping pain against my arms.

“Xion!” I scream over her, but she isn’t looking at me. She’s trying to speak. I look down her body, and my eyes widen. There’s a massive hole in her abdomen.

“Tell...Ezra...” She trails off, taking a shuddering breath. I feel so helpless. This is all my fault once again. She tried to tell me this was all but impossible, but I was once again so caught up in trying to save someone I didn’t listen. This is what Sky meant. This is why she yelled at me on the beach that day. I don’t think.

“Xion!” I scream, but she doesn’t answer me. I’m screaming, and crying, and begging her to not die. Because even though I don’t like what she’s done, I’ve seen her interact with the ones she loves. There are people that love her, and want her to come back. She’s fiercely protective of them. She loves them more than anything and she said so, which is why she’s in this situation. She risked everything so that they can live.

I lay my head down on her chest, beginning to feel the effects of what she felt. I can feel the flesh on my back beginning to grow hot. And I can’t stand it. She endured it for the longest time trying to get me to Remus. I sob into her chest, in pain, and hurt.

“I’m sorry.” I whisper. Then, the world around me stops. It’s as if the wind stops, the crying stops, sound itself stops. I feel an electric shock rip through my body, and I immediately know he’s here. I slowly raise my gaze, and look up in front of me, my eyes gliding over his tall frame, to his flawless features, to that purple gaze that is staring at me without any expression. Blank. Emotionless.

I feel like I can’t breathe. Everything in me is screaming at me to run away, to hide. It’s as if looking at him is invoking fear into my very being. His gaze shifts from me, to Xion, to me again. And I finally decipher the expression on his face.

Shock.

“Iris?”

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